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Martin Audio MLA Delivers Power And Control For 3G Productions At EDC Festivals

Las Vegas, NV––3G Productions, Inc. recently provided audio for the Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC) festivals in New York, Chicago and Las Vegas. Their PA systems included a Martin Audio Multi-cellular Loudspeaker Array (MLA) to provide the power and coverage they needed inside the venue while controlling noise spillage to surrounding residential areas.

In business for nine years, 3G has quickly become a leading force in the rapidly growing world of Electronic Dance Music events, providing audio for numerous large festivals every year. The three-day Electric Daisy Carnival 2013 was the culmination of Insomniac’s EDC festivals with eight of the world’s Top 10 DJs, and more than 200 acts performing on seven stages for over 350,000 attendees at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

The combination of several stages producing hours of high SPL dance music in urban locales adds up to unique challenges for 3G. As Marketing Director Keith Conrad points out, “EDC events are really unique because they’re all in large open-air areas that aren’t necessarily traditional venues for concerts such as stadiums or amphitheatres. They’re in parking lots or racetracks, so the ability to control the sound is extremely important. A big reason why we looked at the Martin Audio MLA system was to control SPLs in areas surrounding the venue.

We also need a lot of bass, so the amount of subs we have on any one show is unheard of,” Keith continues. “Plus you’re doing multiple stages within one area at the same time, which is all about the configuration of the stage in terms of the coverage and direction of the loudspeakers.”

3G senior system engineer and designer Julio Valdez, a specialist in EDM events, provides more specifics: “I get site plans before the event for the areas that have to be covered so I can design systems suitable for what the client (Insomniac, who produces EDC and major dance events worldwide) needs, which is mostly to provide a whole lot of power and have the system sound good.

“Then we go to the location and make sure all of the techs have everything they need to complete the build and address the changing needs of DJs, artists and other performers. Sometimes we have to submit designs to DJ management for approval.

“Finally, I lay out the stages so they don’t have too much of an impact in terms of nearby homes. We have people walking around with dB meters before the show determining what’s acceptable at certain distances from the stage and referencing those SPLs at Front of House.”

The typical Martin Audio setup for EDC consists of a main hang of16 MLA and two MLD downfill cabinets per side with a massive complement of 32 MLX subs ground-stacked across the front of the stage. 12 MLA Compacts per side are used for outfill, and 8 MLA Compacts plus 4 ground-stacked MLX subs per side are used for delays. AVID Venue Profile mixing consoles and Lake loudspeaker processing are also part of the setup.

Given that the New York and Chicago EDCs are held at the Citi Field parking lot and the Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois, respectively, which are smaller and closer to residential areas, were there very different requirements for those two shows than Las Vegas?

“No,” counters Julio. “It really all comes down to getting as much power out to the audience as we can with as little sound out to the neighborhood as possible, which is a constant struggle. And, with that in mind, it’s definitely been helpful to have the kind of control that Martin Audio’s MLA is capable of giving us.

“Power is impressive coming out of the MLA, it’s definitely mind-boggling when you see the size of the rig that’s out there and the output you get from the system. In terms of sound quality, it’s very consistent and, as intended, one can really tailor the sound to what they want and MLA will do it.”

Considering that each stage at EDC features hour-long sets by up to eight DJs a night, do the artists have widely differing requirements in terms of the PA?

“Just like bands, the DJs carry engineers who are responsible for their sound,” says Julio. “And each one has different tastes and opinions about loudspeakers, but we’ve been able to satisfy them with MLA. It’s worked very well. A lot of guys who hadn’t heard MLA were definitely impressed.”

Fortunately for 3G, Las Vegas doesn’t present as many problems with noise complaints because the Speedway is quite a ways out of town, with only Nellis Air Force base nearby that makes its own kind of noise created by F16 jets flying in and out on a regular basis.

The Vegas site also has a large open area in the speedway oval and even though there are so many stages Keith tells us, ‘In terms of the DJs and what they’re playing, you can go from one stage to another in Vegas and you can lose the sound. All of the stages are facing in different directions with as much spread as possible between them, plus there’s a carnival in the middle of the festival with rides and attractions.

“Insomniac is committed to having a true carnival and festival experience and they want it to be the biggest, best and the loudest. They always push the envelope in terms of how much they can give their fans, but we are often walking a fine line with the surrounding communities. As such, we have to control sound to the best of our ability.

“The sound control was a big part of MLA’s initial appeal for us. And we really like where MLA is going in terms of control, ease of setup and quality of the boxes. We’ve had a great experience with MLA so far and there’s a very real application in other areas we are growing as well, such as corporate and TV broadcasting.

Concluding, Keith explains: “The audio quality overall has been stellar and we have yet to even run the system full throttle. More importantly, our customers and the bands/DJs have been really happy with it.”

For more about 3G Productions, please click to www.3glp.com

For more about Martin Audio and MLA, please click to www.martin-audio.com

First Presbyterian Is Covered by Iconyx

Tyler, TX, July 2013….  The majestic white columns and stately brick edifice of First Presbyterian Church have welcomed generations of worshipers in this east Texas town for nearly a century. Recently the church’s much-beloved 650-seat sanctuary underwent a major makeover that included new seating and décor, and a new sound system based around the Renkus-Heinz Iconyx digitally steered column array loudspeakers.

“It’s a beautiful, traditional, high-ceilinged space, and spoken word intelligibility has always been a bit of a challenge,” explains Derek Anderson of Longview, TX-based Sound Logic Integrations. As Anderson observes, until recently the technology didn’t exist to address the issues. “They put in a fairly elaborate system around ten years ago, and even though it was state-of-the-art for the time, it never really solved the problem.”

Acoustical design firm Kirkegaard Associates of Chicago were brought in to design a new system for the room. “Aesthetics was a big concern,” says Anderson. “The previous system clashed badly with the room’s architecture, and they were determined to avoid that mistake again.”

More than a dozen speakers in the previous system were replaced by a single pair of Iconyx IC24-R-II columns on either side of the proscenium. “The room is fairly deep, and we chose the IC24 because it gave us excellent control over directivity,” says Anderson. “We were really able to steer the sound to cover only the seating areas, without hitting the walls and floors and other reflective surfaces.”

Installation of the Iconyx system was simple and straightforward, a tremendous asset considering the tight schedule. “We had a window of only a few weeks to install the system, so we were quite happy with how easy it all went in,” says Anderson. “We finished literally only a few hours before the first service.”

Anderson says the IC24′s low profile certainly met the aesthetics challenge head-on. “The day we were finishing up the install, some of the church elders walked in and asked me where we were going to hang the speakers,” he reports. “They didn’t even see them until I pointed them out.”

Of course, the true test is in the sound, and the Iconyx has scored high marks there as well. “Everyone has been very happy with the results,” says Anderson. “They went from using more than thirty hearing assist systems to using about five or six.”

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Headquartered in Foothill Ranch, California, Renkus-Heinz, Inc. is the worldwide leader in the design and manufacture of audio operations networks, digitally steerable arrays, powered and non-powered loudspeakers, system specific electronics and fully integrated Reference Point Array systems. 

Greater Faith Gets Varia

Indiana Church is Home to One of the First Varia Systems in the US

New Albany, IN… The Church of the Greater Faith is an active and forward-thinking Pentecostal congregation that has been growing by leaps and bounds, thanks in no small part to their contemporary approach to worship. Indeed, Greater Faith’s rapid growth has been a source of both joy and challenges, and as their numbers have swelled, their modest 700-seat sanctuary now hosts two Sunday morning services, with a third service added in the afternoon.

The peaked, metal A-frame structure has long suffered from challenging acoustics, and as Jason Ryder, General Manager of Lake Charles, LA-based Porche Advance Systems explains, efforts over the years to improve the situation have only made things worse.

“Their original system was poorly designed and underpowered to begin with, and they spent the next 11 years trying to fix it,” says Ryder. “The end result was a patchwork of mis-wired, out-of-phase components, and a room with dead spots and really poor, uneven coverage everywhere.”

“They knew they ultimately needed to replace the entire system, but they had been reluctant to do so because they were looking at moving to a larger venue within the next couple of years,” adds owner Jacob Porche. “But with Varia, we were able to design an expandable, flexible system that would work for them now, and become part of their new system later. When they build the new sanctuary, these three cabinets will become the bottom three cabinets in a larger, eight-cabinet array. The fact that this was an investment that could grow with them was a huge plus.”

The new system comprises left and right arrays, each with three Varia cabinets. “The top box has a 90 by 7 degree horn pattern, the middle cabinet has the transitional horn that goes from 90 to 120 degrees wide by 15 degrees vertical, and the bottom unit covers 22 degrees vertical by 120 degrees wide,” says Porche. “That tapered approach enabled us to cover the entire space without resorting to EQ and processing, and to achieve a remarkably flat response from left to right. There is not a single dead spot in the entire sanctuary now.”

Ryder says the congregation’s response to the new system has been unmistakable. “They were all singing louder and moving with the music – the energy level in the room was fantastic.” And the message is getting across now too. “One of the church’s board members came up to me after a service to thank me,” adds Porche. “He said it was the first time he’d ever been able to hear every word of the sermon, and every instrument in the band.”

“With Varia, Renkus-Heinz has developed a system that can truly adapt to any environment,” Porche concludes. “The system’s variable coverage means it can work in any room, and its modular, expandable design means that the system will not become obsolete once the church moves to larger quarters.”

Capital Sound’s Martin Audio MLA Conquers Hyde Park

–Bon Jovi & Rolling Stones Get 10-day Festival Off To Flying Start–

A revolutionary sound system and reoriented stage provided the perfect recipe for the AEG-Barclaycard British Summer Time festival at London’s Hyde Park, as Bon Jovi and the Rolling Stones kicked off the ten-day season attracting crowds of 65,000.

Historically, Hyde Park concerts have been dogged by offsite noise pollution leading to neighborhood complaints and the need to reduce sound levels on site — meaning that the audience couldn’t hear the performances. So new tenants AEG/Loud Sound adopted Martin Audio’s award winning Multi-Cellular Loudspeaker Array (MLA) system to help solve the problem.

Knowing that its advance level of control would be the only scientifically proven system capable of maintaining an offsite level beneath the stipulated 75dB(A) threshold, there was the equal confidence of being able to raise the levels up by as much as 6dB from previous years to around 100dB(A) within the audience area, ensuring that the entire audience was united in the experience.

These figures were verified by Ian Colville, technical manager of Capital Sound, who designed and supplied the complete audio infrastructure. He had nothing but praise for the MLA system that allows a site to be mapped and areas optimized for audience, non-audience and entirely “hard avoid.”

As a result, neighborhood complaints were reduced to an absolute minimum.

Loud Sound had already received categorical proof of MLA’s capabilities at the 2011-2013 back-to-back Underage, Field Day and Apple Cart Festivals in Hackney’s Victoria Park, serviced by Capital Sound. Immersed in a densely populated neighborhood (as with Hyde Park), complaints about noise escapement suddenly ceased according to the event management.

This gave Loud Sound, the site managers for AEG, the evidence that MLA would be a perfect tool for the Hyde Park concerts.

But given the sensitivities of noise thresholds in the Royal Parks, a site simulation was first set up at Hatfield House in Herts for the promoters and acoustics consultants Vanguardia Ltd., who routinely carry out measurement and analysis at outdoor events such as this.

Ian Colville and Martin Audio R&D Director Jason Baird confirmed that this location was chosen because of its similarities in shape and size to the Hyde Park site, and evaluation took place against other systems.

The Martin Audio system is unique in its ability to place the sound only where it is required, unlike conventional systems, which have largely depended on trial and error. As a result the sound coverage pattern can be programmed into Martin Audio’s breakthrough MLA software to guarantee sound containment.

Vanguardia recorded near- and far-field measurements and asked Martin Audio to load in two different presets. which set coverage at 330 ft. and 165 ft. The measured SPL data over the site was then fed into their own environmental model before giving the system the thumbs-up. Vanguardia’s experience with MLA also caused them to believe that a better offsite sound could be achieved than with a conventional system.

The other key factor in the sound threshold increase was the reorientation of the Hyde Park stage by around 30° from north facing to northwest (directing it away from Park Lane). “The result is that fans positioned out at the perimeter have been able to enjoy an identical sound experience to those at the front of the stage,” said Capital Sound general manager, Paul Timmins. “But walk five yards outside the soundfield and it will vanish.”

With its rapid loudness drop-off, the MLA system was created for environments such as Hyde Park. According to one sound engineer who had earlier worked with the system. The ability to ‘taper off’ the sound at the perimeter “is as if an invisible ring has been drawn around the site.” It was this that will have impressed those monitoring the offsite sound at typical nearby locations such as the Grosvenor House Hotel on Park Lane.

As Ian Colville assessed, “The ability to gain an extra 6dB of volume onsite, while keeping within the off-site maximum level of 75dB(A), provides a significant advantage. MLA is such a different system, with all of its acoustic cells individually controlled to produce phase-coherent summation in the audience areas.”

So how was the Hyde Park system conceived? Sculpted into the oak shrubbery of the concept stage’s proscenium––the inspiration of set designers MDM working with Star Rigging––were left and right hangs of 16 x MLA elements (with a single MLD Downfill box at the base). Outfills were provided by 12 MLA (and a single MLD each side) with eight pairs of the small footprint Martin Audio W8LM Mini Line Arrays for front fills.

The subwoofer cardioid broadside array—made up of 32 MLX subs—is now a tried and trusted ‘electronic arc’ concept, with one back facing enclosure for every two forward-facing ones providing cancellation at the rear. “The beauty of this design,” says Colville, “is that you can adjust the horizontal dispersion and rear rejection electronically without needing to physically move anything.”

In addition there were ten delay masts. The front two arcs of four MLA masts each contained seven elements and a single MLD. For the larger shows, two further delay towers at the back were enabled, made up of eight MLA Compacts. Critical distances were 165 ft. (from FOH to stage), while the delays were set at 295 ft. (from the stage), 525 ft. and 688 ft. (for the MLA Compacts).

In summary, Ian Colville said, “At Hyde Park we proved how MLA technology allows us to significantly increase on-site volume while containing the sound within a strictly defined area. It’s a great result for everyone involved in the project.”

Martin Audio managing director, Anthony Taylor, added: “This is a significant jewel in the crown of worldwide events; we are thrilled that Martin Audio and our MLA technology has been chosen to tackle Hyde Park’s challenging sound issues. This is a win-win for everyone involved: artists, sound engineers and the paying public get the sound performance they deserve, while local residents are less impacted.”

In addition to system designers, Ian Colville and Martin Audio R&D Director, Jason Baird, Capital Sound’s support team included Al Woods (crew chief), Toby Donovan (system engineer and MLA technician) and eight other crew. Account manager was Martin Connolly and project assistant was Michele Conroy. Andy Davies and Chris Pyne, from Martin Audio’s Tech Support team, also supported the event.

For more about Martin Audio, please click to www.martin-audio.com.

Delicate And MLA Take Control Of Audio At BottleRock Festival

Far from your typical summer rock gathering, the BottleRock Napa Valley festival combined the best in music with exceptional food, wine, beer and comedy to provide a whole new multi-sensory experience for sophisticated concertgoers.

Fittingly, the festival was held in one of the country’s greatest wine regions at the Napa Valley Expo fairgrounds in the heart of downtown Napa, California, just blocks away from restaurants, wine tasting rooms, art galleries and hotels.

The eclectic musical lineup of over 80 bands was easily on par with the finest regional wines in terms of taste and variety, including Kings of Leon, The Black Keys, Zac Brown Band, Train, The Black Crowes, Jane’s Addiction, Alabama Shakes, Jackson Browne, Charlie Musselwhite, Primus, Richard Thompson, Mavis Staples, Blues Traveler, Brandi Carlile, The Flaming Lips, Violent Femmes, The Wallflowers, X, Dwight Yoakam and too many more to name here.

Delicate Productions of Camarillo and San Francisco was in charge of audio, lighting and LED for what was the inaugural run of the festival. Simply controlling audio in a fairground located in the heart of Napa with houses just across the street was enough of a challenge for any production company, not to mention supporting the festival’s five stages for four full days of music.

The need to provide exceptional coverage while eliminating noise spillage in such a tightly defined area was a critically important factor for BottleRock, which explains why the MLA (Multi-cellular Loudspeaker Array) system was chosen for the main stages along with a full complement of Martin Audio for the other stages.

Delicate’s design team for the system was comprised of lead audio engineer Brian Basilsky working with company President Jason Alt and General Manager George Edwards. The main (Sliverado/Willpower) stage consisted of a L/R hang with16 MLA and 4 MLD Downfill cabinets per side, a left-left side hang of 6 MLA Compact (no right-right side hang because of nearby houses); 12 W8LM for front fill; 24 ground-stacked MLX subs, and 16 MLA Compact enclosures for delays. The Monitor/Stage system included L/R hangs of 4 W8C; 4 W8CS compact subs; and two WS218X subs for side fills, along with four WS18X drum subs.

Rounding out the full complement of Martin Audio at the festival was a MLA Compact system with DSX subs at the second stage; W8LC systems for the third and comedy stages and a smaller trapezoid WT3 system for the local stage.

Commenting on why they chose MLA for this situation, Jason Alt says, “There’s no system out there that could duplicate what we achieved in terms of audio control with MLA. The way we were able use to steer the subwoofers and the system, our ability to determine an accurate end point and really have audio die off before the end of the property line was so important. The only audio that people heard at a distance was because of the immersion layer in the atmosphere. It had nothing to do with audio really spilling that far.”

Considering all of the challenge at the BottleRock event, what was the biggest specific problem Delicate had to face?

“The fact that the fairgrounds property line is literally 100 feet across the street from houses,” Jason responds. “And those residents were very concerned at the beginning that having a big rock concert going on that close would cause all kinds of problems in terms of the noise and even their paintings falling off their walls. But by the end of it, because of what we did with steering the system and especially the subs, there were no problems.

“Even though the stage was only 200 feet from the end of the property line,” Jason explains, “we were able to get the subs down to -35dB fifty feet from stage right––the low end dropped off that dramatically. If you stood across the street it was hardly even noticeable. But if you walked to the side of the stage feeding into the fairground, there was full-on 90º bass coverage. It all came down to really impressive calculations from Brian and Ferrit (MLA specialist Martyn “Ferrit” Rowe) that produced those results. We had interaction and worked with all of the people on that street throughout the festival and not one of them complained. Most sat on their porch and enjoyed the show.”

Looking back at the festival and the need to fulfill the needs of 80 acts within necessarily tight time frames, Jason acknowledges MLA’s many other advantages: “Besides the control, MLA helped us work much more effectively with all of the different acts at BottleRock. The system gives you such a blank canvas for what each artist wants the system to sound like; we were able to accommodate all of their sonic wish lists quickly and effectively. Deploying MLA and getting it up happened in a timely fashion so that every artist had enough time to set up and the headliners were all able to tune the system, take a good listen to it, and adjust it to their specific needs.

“Coverage-wise, we didn’t do a typical right-right hang because of the neighborhood’s proximity, but we did cover 30,000 people very well with a decent amount of boxes. I don’t think we could have achieved the same sonic goals with another system, especially with the county’s noise ordinances. One of the headliners, Zac Brown, carries MLA as their touring rig and their system tech didn’t make a single change to the way we deployed it. They didn’t even have to EQ it that much.

“We actually got very positive feedback from all of the artists and engineers,” Jason adds, “including those smaller bands who were opening up the main stage. Even though they were only playing to a few thousand attendees because it was early in the day, the crowd wasn’t getting blown away because the engineers didn’t have to mix too aggressively. MLA really did its job of working with every artist on every level.”

Asked to sum up about the overall performance of Martin Audio at BottleRock, Jason concludes, “As the largest Martin Audio house in the country, we’re fully committed to all of their products, especially for an event like this. Every place we deployed it, every version of every Martin Audio box we have was used, whether it was speakers on a stick, WT2s, WT3s or W8LMs, we pretty much used everything everywhere to fill in every need the festival had.

“The MLA Compact rig on the second stage was especially impressive. We debated back and forth on the distance coverage for that area, but the Compact outperformed even what we thought it would do and covered an area 300 ft. out. And once again, we could control it to keep the sound inside the property line, so it all worked out really well with MLA and Martin Audio, which was not surprising for us.”

For more about Delicate Productions, please click to www.delicate.com

For more about Martin Audio, please click to www.martin-audio.com

About Martin Audio®
Founded by audio engineer David Martin in 1971, Martin Audio pioneered the use of all-horn-loaded bass designs in world-class touring loudspeaker systems for groups such as Pink Floyd, ELP and Supertramp. Located outside of London, Martin Audio now embodies a sophisticated mix of acoustic design, research, mathematical modeling and software engineering for a wide range of products in the installation, cinema and touring sound markets.

Last.fm and Local Radio Station Hold Festival at Tinley Park

Elk Grove Village, Ill.—The First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre is located in Tinley Park, Illinois, forty minutes south of Chicago. Owned by Live Nation, the First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre is Chicago’s largest outdoor amphitheater with a capacity of approximately 28,000.

Celebrating over 17 years of music history, the First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre typically hosts 25 concerts each summer season. Last.fm, a music service powered entirely by its community of listeners, along with local radio station Q87.7 Piqniq, hosted a 10-act festival at the end of June using Gand Concert Sound (GCS) aka “the NEXO guys” for audio production. Festival line up included the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Bush, Silversun Pickups, AWOLNATION, and Atlas Genius.

GCS brought in a NEXO GEO T system along with assorted audio gear including a new Yamaha CL5 digital audio console and DME64 used as part of the front of house mix rig. Main hangs consisted of 21 GEO T 4805s and three GEO T 2815s per side, seven GEO T 4805s and one GEO T 2815s per side used for out fills, along with 24 CD18s, six PS10R2s for front fills, and eight NX 4X4 amps.

Vincent Casamatta, front of house engineer for AWOLNATION said, “I told GCS tech Adam Rosenthal that the GEO T rig was spec’d, implemented and tech’d perfectly. I had a slamming show, one of the best sounding of this year.”

President Gary Gand said, “This will be a record breaking month for GCS. Our investment in NEXO puts us at the top of the call list when the big venues and national acts need pristine audio to the very farthest seat.” Gand was an early adopter of the NEXO GEO T tangent array system and its associated software.

For more information on Gand Concert Sound, visit www.gandconcertsound.com.

For more information on NEXO and Yamaha products, visit www.yamahaca.com.

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About Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc.:
Celebrating 125 years of Passion and Performance, and 25 years in the manufacturer of high quality digital audio consoles, Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc. (YCAS) provides a full line of integrated professional audio products offering complete systems solutions for the broadcast, sound reinforcement/installed sound, touring, commercial recording, and post production markets. With the addition of NEXO to the product line, the company remains the official U.S. and Canadian distributor for all NEXO speaker models. YCAS offers comprehensive in-house and field product training for its customers, a dedicated dealer network, and 24/7 technical support.

RG Jones And Martin Audio Maintain Winning Formula For Glastonbury

After a one-year break, it was business as usual back at the Worthy Farm site for this year’s Glastonbury Festival. RG Jones once again turned to the tried and true Martin Audio W8 Longbow system, which again dominated the Pyramid Stage.

With visiting artists and sound engineers so complimentary about the sound system two years ago, specialist sound company RG Jones had no hesitation in fielding a similar PA rig, knowing that this would meet all compliances and propagation tests set by the acoustics consultants and organizer Michael Eavis while satisfying the vast crowds of around 150,000 who converge on the site for the four day extravaganza.

The Longbow hangs are now a familiar sight, book-ending either side of the iconic Pyramid, having fulfilled similar duties for the previous four festivals.

Once again dual inner and outer PA hangs comprised of 14 W8L Longbow elements per side, with two W8LD Downfills at the base provided the full range dynamic––making 64 boxes in total. However, this year RG Jones changed the subwoofer design from the Martin Audio WS318X (3 x 18in) subs fielded in 2011 back to 54 of the WS218X (2 x 18in) enclosures used previously––still maintaining an electronically curved, cardioid broadside array configuration.

With the subs delayed incrementally from the center outwards, the overall wavefront was tuned to fill the Pyramid Stage area, and ensure that spillage beyond the site perimeter was minimized.

According to RG Jones’ project manager Ben Milton, a Glastonbury stalwart who was taking on the role of project manager for the first time, “We have tried various configurations of the bass array and this solution––with two enclosures front facing and one reversed––works particularly well; the rejection from the stage is great and it enables us to bend, shape and steer the sound.”

In addition, two clusters of four W8LC Compact Line Arrays, situated at each end of the crash barrier, provided nearfield infills, and four delay masts each comprising a further 16 x W8LC’s were positioned 330 ft. back from the downstage center, split into an arc.

“This solution worked great,” said Milton. “The organizers wanted to leave nothing to chance when it came to maintaining levels and this was virtually a carbon copy of the 2011 system. We had plenty of opportunity to walk the field and conduct measurements to ensure the accuracy of the system,” he said.

One advantage was the additional zoning that could be applied for tighter control. “All the tops were on individual circuits so we could turn them down very discreetly if necessary and sculpt the system. When the sun goes down the air temperature changes and we back off the top boxes; and as it cools we can bring them back up again.”

This is the domain of seasoned PA system technician Mark Edwards, who has extensive experience with all Martin Audio’s premier systems. He was an essential member of RG Jones’ specialist team, which included Steve Carr and Damian Dyer at FOH (with the experienced Simon Honywill occupying more of a ‘floating’ role this year). Down at the stage logistical duties were shared by Ben Milton (who also mixed monitors for some acts) and Mark Isbister. Supporting the system throughout was Martin Audio’s R&D director, Jason Baird.

Summing up, Glastonbury veteran, Simon Honywill, could not have been more positive, “This year’s Festival was the most professional, slick, and calm, enjoyable experience I can remember at an event of this stature.

“The Rolling Stones sounded absolutely incredible, with all the requisite punch and fidelity you could have wished for. Coverage was superb––the Stones FOH team was extremely happy, and the punters were testament to that. As a neutral platform for all the acts, it would be very difficult to criticize the sound, and I was proud to be associated with such a brilliantly well delivered system.”

Ben Milton added, “We now have bands and their technicians fully confident in the system and happy to use our racks, stacks and control. It makes for a great British synergy: a British production company using a British PA system at the greatest of British festivals.”

The only thing Glastonbury lacked, reflected Honywill, was [sound engineer] Steve Watson, who sadly died the weekend before. “He is sadly missed, and the industry won’t be the same without him,” he said in tribute.

For more about Martin Audio, please click to www.martin-audio.com

About Martin Audio®
Founded by audio engineer David Martin in 1971, Martin Audio pioneered the use of all-horn-loaded bass designs in world-class touring loudspeaker systems for groups such as Pink Floyd, ELP and Supertramp. Located outside of London, Martin Audio now embodies a sophisticated mix of acoustic design, research, mathematical modeling and software engineering for a wide range of products in the installation, cinema and touring sound markets.

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Related Topics: Audio Playback, Line Array, Loudspeakers |

Nashville’s Riverfront Park Stage Stocked with NEXO STM, Yamaha CLs for the 42nd Annual CMA Music Festival

BUENA PARK, Calif.—This year’s CMA Music Festival took place June 6-9 in Nashville’s Riverfront Park, with Morris Light & Sound (Nashville) handling audio production for the event’s largest outdoor free stage with one of the biggest opening day crowds on record of 44,000. More than 162,000 fans passed through the gates to watch performances at the Chevrolet™ Riverfront Stage, outfitted with the new NEXO STM line array, PS15s, RS18 Ray Subs, 4×4 NXAmps, 45 N-12 line monitors, Yamaha CL5 digital consoles and Rio3224 input/output boxes all connected via a Dante network.

With nearly 50 artists performing, the Chevrolet Riverfront Stage was the hot spot for the daily concerts that took place over five days in downtown Nashville. The stage kicked off on Wednesday with the Block Party concert featuring headliner, Joe Diffie. Thursday was a full day of performances that began with a high energy show from CMA Award-winning recording artist Sara Evans followed by performances from Keith Anderson, Greg Bates, Blackberry Smoke, Craig Campbell, Mark Chesnutt, Brett Eldredge, Rachel Farley, Tyler Farr, Colt Ford, Gloriana, The Grascals, Steve Holy, Casey James, Kristen Kelly, Aaron Lewis, Lonestar, Love and Theft, Dustin Lynch, Jo Dee Messina, Ronnie Milsap, Craig Morgan, David Nail, Joe Nichols, Jerrod Niemann, Paslay, Maggie Rose, Corey Smith, Tate Stevens, Sunny Sweeney, Phil Vassar, Chuck Wicks, Gretchen Wilson, and Darryl Worley.

Eric Elwell mixed front of house for Joe Nichols and said, “I was really looking forward to an opportunity to drive the new NEXO STM rig. My good friends, David Haskell and John Mills at Morris Light & Sound, have ears I trust implicitly, and I’ve always had fantastic experiences with NEXO, so when they showed me the rig and the design behind it, I couldn’t wait to mix on it. Wow! It’s detailed, but not in a hard or hyped-kind of way. It felt like an F1 racecar… just so responsive. I worked there on the second day at the River Stage, and by then the Yamaha/NEXO team really had the rig singing. It was fantastic, with rich warmth and detail all the way to the top of the hill! Very hi-fi, which I love.”

“I was very impressed with the consistency of the definition of all the vocals, even with all the different engineers that mixed over the course of the four days,” states David Haskell, President, Morris Light & Sound.

Elwell also said he used the new Yamaha CL5 digital console once before, subbing for a friend on a tour last fall. “I was impressed then by the purity and clarity. The mic pre’s are fantastic, and the plug-ins give you everything you need to add ‘a little something’ extra. On the Joe Nichols mix for CMA Fest, I got to use the Rupert Neve Design Portico 5043 compressor across the stereo buss just to add that final “glue” to the mix. The sounds of the plug-ins are just like the real hardware I’ve used in the studio… glorious!”

Russell Fischer, freelance monitor and FOH engineer who has mixed front of house for Taylor Swift, The Mavericks and Toby Keith, to name a few, mixed monitors for several different bands at the Chevrolet Riverfront Stage, said he liked working on the Yamaha CL5 in this large festival situation. “I like the flexibility and ease of use of the Custom Fader Banks; it made for very quick navigation of critical inputs during the festival at the monitor mix position. Also, I found the Premium Rack devices very useful.”

For more information on the CMA Festival, visit www.cmaworld.com/cma-music-festival/2013.

For more information on Morris Light & Sound, visit www.morrislightandsound.com.

For more information on the NEXO STM and Yamaha CL5, visit www.yamahaca.com.

-END-

PHOTO ID: Eric Elwell

About Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc.:
Celebrating 125 years of Passion and Performance, and 25 years in the manufacturer of high quality digital audio consoles, Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc. (YCAS) provides a full line of integrated professional audio products offering complete systems solutions for the broadcast, sound reinforcement/installed sound, touring, commercial recording, and post production markets. With the addition of NEXO to the product line, the company remains the official U.S. and Canadian distributor for all NEXO speaker models. YCAS offers comprehensive in-house and field product training for its customers, a dedicated dealer network, and 24/7 technical support.

Iconyx Tames the Modern Art of Denver’s Clyfford Still Museum

Denver, CO – July 2012…  One of the giants in post-WWII American painting, Clyfford Still dropped out of the commercial art world in 1951. When he died in 1980, he willed entire collection to an American city willing to create a permanent home for it.

More than three decades later, the Clyfford Still Museum opened its doors in downtown Denver. The 28,000-square-foot steel and concrete building houses more than 2400 of Still’s works, as well as a collection of the artist’s journals, sketchbooks and archives.

Visitors enter the museum through a massive glass-lined lobby whose windows extend from its tiled floors to its concrete ceiling. The strikingly beautiful architecture, while visually stunning, creates a highly reverberant acoustical environment that is anything but conducive to the large-screen video presentation that runs in the museum’s entry.

Denver-based Empowercom was retained by the museum’s planning commission to address the lobby’s challenging acoustics. As Empowercom’s Vice President Terri Jackson explains, the selection of Renkus-Heinz’s Iconyx steerable array loudspeakers was a logical choice.

“The content management committee on the project had suggested the Iconyx system, and everyone involved unanimously agreed they were the only speakers that would meet the needs of the space,” says Jackson. “Being able to steer the sound away from the abundance of reflective surfaces was key. Using the Iconyx, we were able to focus the sound to a concentrated area directly in front of the screen, rather than create a cacophony across the entire lobby.”

Jackson adds, “The program material contains both narration and music, and the Iconyx delivers on both spoken word intelligibility and musical performance.”

The Iconyx’s low profile design also helped to make it an ideal fit, says Jackson. “It’s a very high-end space, and the Iconyx really fits in with the décor,” she notes. “It’s an elegant, low-profile design that actually blends with the surroundings.”

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Headquartered in Foothill Ranch, California, Renkus-Heinz, Inc. is the worldwide leader in the design and manufacture of audio operations networks, digitally steerable arrays, powered and non-powered loudspeakers, system specific electronics and fully integrated Reference Point Array systems.

 

 

 

 

CMA Music Festival Rocks Music City With L-ACOUSTICS K1

Sound Image delivers better-than-ever concert sound at Nashville’s LP Field for world’s largest annual country music festival and broadcast

NASHVILLE, Tennessee — The 42nd annual CMA Music Festival, the world’s largest country music festival and broadcast, recently stomped all previous attendance records at its 2013 event, which took place in Nashville from Thursday, June 6 through Sunday, June 9. As usual, the highlights of the festivities this year were the main stage concerts at LP Field, which nightly drew more than 45,000 spectators to cheer and sing along with dozens of the genre’s top artists.

For sound reinforcement duties, the Country Music Association (CMA) awarded the contract to Sound Image, which supplied a large-scale L-ACOUSTICS K1 system for the headlining concert each night — all four of which sold out more than six weeks in advance. more

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Related Topics: Large Venue, Line Array, Loudspeakers, News |

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