RG Jones fields Martin Synco array

Wednesday, 26 July 2006
RG Jones fields Martin Synco arrayThe sound crew (from left) Richard Sharratt and Steven Carr, with RG Jones director John Carroll.
UK - Specialists in providing sound reinforcement for the outdoor season, RG Jones emerged from the celebration of their 80th anniversary by covering four simultaneous events on a weekend in July, keeping their premium Martin Synco W8LC line array system for three weekend concerts on the beautiful English Heritage site of Audley End near Saffron Walden.

With the house itself providing the stage backdrop and the terrain raked naturally, it was the perfect picnic venue for some 6,500 people to assemble for the first in the 'Music on a Summer Evening' series, featuring Simple Minds. As with its sister venue Kenwood (also covered by RG Jones) the event is run by promoters IMG on behalf of English Heritage.Using ViewPoint predictive software, RG Jones mounted two arrays of 16 Martin Synco W8LCs either side of the stage on masts, specially constructed on site by Serious Structures (who provided their Orbit stage).

This was reinforced by eight WLX subs per side, some nearfills and three delay positions set 100m back (each carrying six W8LCs). For all this heavy artillery, RG Jones' sound engineer Richard Sharratt (mixing support band Circlesound) and his system tech Steve Carr knew they had to remain within the predefined environmental sound limitations enforced for these events. "The Martin Synco system is one of the easier arrays to rig," noted Carr. "These are very neat masts and are capable of holding four tonnes; we come in at just under a ton per side."

He added: "For a mid-sized box the Martin Synco system throws an incredible distance, and the Synco presets make it really stand out." Carr used a combination of Martin Audio's dedicated processors and XTA DP224/DP226 to set the crossovers in the main PA and delays. "Using the DP226 in the master rack enables us to gain greater control of the HF further up the array and gain more coverage at the back once the crowds come in," he says. "The most important thing is to be able to cover the whole site."

Simple Minds specified a choice of PA systems on their rider, Martin Audio being among them. The band are certainly no strangers to the brand, having played regularly through Martin Audio's classic F2 system during their heyday. Equally familiar with the Martin Audio pedigree was their experienced FOH engineer Patrick Demoustier, supported by system tech Stephan 'Cutie' Themps and monitor engineer Marc Iven. The event's production manager was Chris Hurdle.

RG Jones director John Carroll explained that in addition to Audley End, which the company has worked since these concerts began some 15 years ago, RG Jones crews were simultaneously on duty at Kenwood House and further orchestral events at Mount Ephraim Gardens in Faversham and Radley College in Abingdon.

(Lee Baldock)

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