MICROseries for Fresh's bold new look
"Since we opened our first location in Boston in 1991, music has always been an essential element of the shopping experience at Fresh," says co-founder Alina Roytberg. In fact, Fresh updates its musical content programming on a monthly basis, but providing the ideal accompaniment for customers does require care, she adds. "You never want your customers to hear their own steps, but you don't want to distract customers from what our associates are saying either. The Audica Professional sound system works excellently in our spaces."
Designed and installed by NYC's EL Media Group, Audica's MICROseries system provides highly nuanced reproduction of music in a package suited to Fresh's needs, explains Ernie Lake, EL's creative chief operator. "They wanted something that looked good and suited their design, but they were very limited on space, so we proposed the Audica system because it just doesn't take up any room. It's that compact."
In Fresh, EL installed one Audica MICROzone amplifier/controller and a MICROplus 4-channel power amp, one MICROsub active subwoofer, two MICROpoint and four MICROline loudspeakers. The MICROpoint's and MICROline's are evenly distributed throughout the space and ceiling mounted using Audica's proprietary hardware to achieve optimal positioning and coverage.
There are challenges in any project of this nature, Lake says. "It's a highly reflective space, but Audica is incredible for that. Also, their surface mount hardware is very easy to use and allows us to place speakers exactly where we need to. I also like Audica's digital amps. We prefer to wire in 8 Ohms to provide better sound quality and a wider range of frequencies and this is an easy system to put together in that configuration. For the size of the speaker there's nothing out there that sounds as good."
In providing audio solutions for design conscious clients like Fresh, EL gets in on the process very early on. "We work very closely with clients and designers to ensure everything fits the way it should. Often designers aren't big fans of seeing speakers in a room, but when I proposed Audica they had no issues at all." On the strength of their success with Audica at Fresh Union Square, the system has become Fresh's system of choice for the ongoing revamp of their stores nationwide.