Dramatic changes are taking place in the middle of Birmingham. Much of the city centre appears to be under construction, and - as increasingly seems to be the case in such projects - the civic redevelopment has been led by the artistic facilities at its heart: the Birmingham Hippodrome Theatre has recently completed a development project that lasted almost two years.
Following a £24 million National Lottery Award through the Arts Council of England and further support from the European Regional development Fund, Birmingham City Council, donations from businesses and individuals and funds raised through appeal, the project has seen practically every part of the building reworked. The foyers were demolished and re-built providing greatly improved access, including lift and disabled access, together with a restaurant and other catering facilities - all wrapped within a design that feels light and airy. On the other side of the building, the purchase of adjacent land has allowed for the creation of a new complex housing facilities for the Hippodrome, the Birmingham Royal Ballet, which uses the Hippodrome as its home base, and DanceXchange - the national dance agency for the West Midlands.
Expansion back from the stage has also allowed the most useful improvement to the theatre as far as those who tour into it will be concerned: the building has always been blessed with an enormous stage, but unfortunately it is 3.5m below street level, and the get-in has always been slowed by having to use a lift and/or ramp. Now, a new rear-stage extension houses a 15m lift that can c
Hull company Tega has recently completed the installation of sound and lighting at Hull University Union’s new venue, ‘Asylum’. The union building, dating from the seventies, has never had a proper venue for events, and until recently the refectory area was pressed into service. This was far from ideal as equipment had to be removed after every event, and the ceiling height was less than 10 feet.
The long-awaited new venue has been designed by Big Blue and features a large stage, sprung dancefloor, DJ booth and bar area with permanently installed sound and effects lighting. Tega have worked closely with the University on many events in the past, and, as a result of their good support service, were awarded the sound and lighting contract. The main sound system uses the Union’s eight existing EAW KF650 boxes, which are flown above the stage on custom-designed frames. The eight SB600 sub bins are located beneath the stage along with two Logic System CS1000SB subs to augment the system’s lower frequencies. In the bar area are eight Mackie ART300 speakers, with a further four providing stage fill. The main system is powered by Chevin Research amplifiers (2 x A1000, 2 x A3000 and 5 x A6000), and the Mackie speakers are powered by QSC amplifiers. The system is controlled using a Peavey MediaMatrix Xframe-88 system which allows zoning of the main and bar speakers, and provides limiting and crossover functions for all speakers.
Chris Ford of Tega selected the Peavey unit because of its flexibility. "The beauty of the Xframe system is that, with
One of the UK’s most notable dance venues, the Middlesborough Empire, has continued its systematic sound upgrade with Martin Audio by turning the upper circle of the famous old theatre into a self-contained 500-capacity ’70s themed venue. Co-owner Barry Faulkner confirmed that a new Blackline system had been imported to complement the powerful Wavefront rig (eight W8C, 12 WSX subs) downstairs, which pumps music from the nation’s top DJs into the 1100-capacity main auditorium.
The club’s relationship with Martin Audio began when design engineer Rod Short joined the High Wycombe-based manufacturers back in April 1995. Rod had designed the original club system at The Empire, while working with his previous company - but quickly turned the club round to Martin. This time around he designed a system which was supplied through Dial Sound & Lighting in Yorkshire. Four flown Blackline H2s service the upper mids, while a similar complement of S218s create the sub-bass impact - one pair either side of the DJ rostrum, which is situated in the centre of the room. The system is tuned through Martin’s dedicated M3 Blackline controller and powered by Martin MA1400 amplifiers. A further pair of Blackline F10s act as DJ monitors.
Faulkner told us: "We wanted to create our own 70s room, with disco and jazz funk, by refreshing the space. So we blocked it off from the upper circle - and replaced the infill speakers. We have a long relationship with Rod Short so it was natural we should ask him to design the system."
The venue today trades three or
A collaboration between ScanAudio, LMC Audio, BSS Audio and Kelsey Acoustics has resulted in an ambitious pilot scheme to allow monitoring of epileptic patients at St. Pier’s School in Lingfield, the National Centre for Young People with Epilepsy.
The system - designed to alert staff both visually and audibly to a possible emergency situation - is networked via BSS Soundweb 9088 digital devices. In standby mode, the block of six rooms is monitored using boundary microphones installed above the bed heads. The control panel features audio activity LED to indicate which room or rooms may need attending, while staff are able to use the visual monitor to identify which room to listen to more closely, using a solo room-select button. The threshold sensitivity of the microphone may be adjusted so that unwanted background noise is not relayed to the loudspeaker monitor.
Following the success of the pilot scheme at St. Pier’s, a newly-developed audio monitoring system has now been installed in the MRI unit at the National Society for Epilepsy in Chalfont St. Peter, where the audio design this time involves two wings of six rooms. Each wing is linked to its own Soundweb 9088 DSP unit, both devices controlled by a Kelsey Acoustics-built custom controller. LMC Audio acted as consultants and commissioning agents for the system. "This system represents a considerable advance on the pilot scheme and was developed in association with the staff of St. Pier’s to incorporate significant new features," confirms ScanAudio’s Dee Couchman. These include indiv
While the sensory experience of Dolby 5.1 surround sound has become fairly commonplace, few have experienced the benefits provided by its latest-generation 15.1 successor. Such a system is due to open later this spring at Legoland California, when the 128-acre theme park north of San Diego unveils a new four-dimensional, large-screen video attraction at its LEGO Showplace Theatre.
The show, which will prominently feature white-knuckle automotive thrills as provided by the Lego Racers, will utilize a pair of 12,000 lumen Panasonic PT-D9600U projectors to convey its visual drama, and 16 PowerLight amplifiers from QSC to fuel its larger-than-life 15.1 surround sound. While El Segundo-based Edwards Technology was made responsible for installing the theatre's video and audio systems, Legoland California’s own technical guru Paul Beach will oversee daily operations. Commenting on the show prior to its upcoming public debut, Beach said "I've seen test runs of the video, and it's quite impressive. Complementing the high-end surround sound and 3D video are true 4D effects such as wind, snow, smoke, streamers, and water, which will be controlled with an Alcorn McBride unit utilizing DMX, SMPTE timecode, and 24V show control."
Just as in every other audio application within the park, the Lego Showplace Theatre relies upon QSC amplification. In total, the 16 PowerLight amplifiers are used. "We've used QSC amps exclusively since the park opened in 1999," Beach says. "They have yet to give us any trouble, and they sound great. What more could you ask fo
Home to the Seattle Symphony Orchestra for the past four years, Benaroya Hall recently installed ten Soundweb 9088ii digital signal processors as part of a discrete new vocal reinforcement system for its 2,500-seat S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium. CCI Systems of Olympia, working closely with the Harman Professional Projects Group (HPPG), provided the system’s design and installation.
Two of the BSS Audio processors are utilized to provide DSP, EQ and delay for a new central cluster of custom JBL loudspeaker enclosures powered by existing Crown Macro-Tech MA5002VZ amplifiers. A third 9088ii does likewise for speakers addressing the stage lip and orchestra/monitor sections. The remaining seven processors are similarly called upon to provide individual delays, EQ and signal processing for 56 JBL HTI6 speaker boxes, all driven by a rack of Crown CP660 six-channel power amplifiers, which provide coverage to the otherwise acoustically shadowed first- and second-tier box seating areas.
"We had installed a significant number of Soundweb units as part of an extensive signal processing upgrade for Cleveland’s Gund Arena just prior to this project and were thoroughly satisfied with their performance," says Ron Simonson, P.E., CCI Systems’ executive vice president. "The 9088iis have proven to be remarkably flexible, sonically pristine and extremely reliable. Furthermore, BSS Audio USA in Nashville provided an outstanding level of support throughout this entire complex project."
CCI Systems is now embarking on the second phase of its work
Pensacola Christian College has recently completed a top-level facility at its Florida location. Designed and installed by All Pro Sound, a design/build contractor located in Pensacola, the facility comprises a comprehensive array of sound reinforcement, recording and broadcast systems, which were installed in the College's Crowne Centre over an 11-month period, and include over 160 Turbosound loudspeakers.
Conceived as a multi-purpose state-of-the-art facility, the Crowne Centre is the College's newest development and contains a large, 6,035-seat auditorium, with a flexible below-balcony area that can be divided into three separate 600-seat seminar areas. The auditorium's 33-metre two-storey stage includes a rotatable section, and has a frontal area that can be configured in four different formats. The Centre also houses two 200-seat wedding chapels, hospitality areas and classrooms, plus orchestra and choir rehearsal areas.
Sound quality and flexibility were the key requirements for the Crowne Centre, with the auditorium used for a wide cross-section of functions. John Fuqua, of All Pro Sound, commented on the stringent system design requirements involved: "The primary system specification was for vocal quality - clarity and intelligibility for speech, and musicality for vocal group and solo performances. Supporting this overriding requirement for quality was the need to re-configure the system, depending on the day-to-day usage of the auditorium itself and the Centre's other areas. To arrive at our final loudspeaker specification, we visited a number of similar
With song-based music currently poised to make a major comeback, the recent growth of London’s Bayswater showcase venue, Tall Poppy Presents, has seen the venue become one of the hottest spots in town for A&R people and unsigned artists. Faced with a demanding, critical audience and international performers whose potential careers depend on the best possible sound quality, Tall Poppy has chosen FBT MaxX4a active PA speakers, supplied by UK distributor Proel (International).
The venue, situated at Henry’s Bar/Restaurant in the Henry VIIIth Hotel, Bayswater, is hosted each week by Canadian singer-songwriter Lee Lindsey, who performs her own material as well as introducing performances from a string of artists. The music is often demanding and the audience is fussy. Responsible for getting the sound right is guest engineer, record producer, Jack Guy. Jack (whose recording credits include INXS, All Saints and Gun) says: "We’d been looking for ages for a better standard and the FBT MaxX active speakers are very, very true - very natural at the top end and they don’t lie. When you play a CD back through the FBTs it sounds like a CD - sometimes with PA speakers a CD sounds terrible, but these are great. I’m actually going to be using them in the studio soon, to beef-up the sound of a room - that’s how good they are."
The FBT MaxX4a is a two-way system fitted with renowned B&C drivers: a single die-cast aluminium framed 12" speaker fitted with a neodymium magnet and a custom 1" compression driver. The MaxX 4a delivers 300
Audio Sound Advice of Blackpool have supplied a complete audio system for the new production of Funny Girls, which re-opened recently at its new home in the old Odeon Cinema in Blackpool. The Funny Girls concept is to entertain the audience with famous show songs and arrangements, all performed by men in drag.
The refurbishment of the art deco theatre - complete with gilt adornments and deep carpets - included work in the private members club, nightclub, restaurant, main bar and feeder bars.
Audio Sound Advice’s Peter Bawden designed the theatre audio system and he and business partner Kevin Jones spent three months working closely with Phillip Holmes, project manager for venue owners In The Pink Leisure to ensure that it met all the venue’s needs. (ITPL was founded over 20 years ago by Basil Newby and now operates many of Blackpool’s most colourful venues.)
The new audio system is built around Martin Audio speakers, an Allen & Heath 12-channel mixing console and EV amplification. Martin’s EM system has been installed in the bar and restaurant areas, whilst a Wavefront WT3 theatre system features within the main auditorium, with four of the arrayable 3-way compact enclosures at FOH, along with four WT UB compact under balcony enclosures and two WS2A dedicated ultra-low frequency sub bass systems. The WT3s, painted bright gold to match the architecture, have been installed in two pairs on each side of the main stage - one pair to cover the stalls and a pair to cover the balcony area. The WT UBs cover the lower circle and have been painted white
Martin Audio has supplied a large club sound system through its Irish distributor Rea Sound, to fulfil the exacting remit of club owner Peter Collins at his new venue, Club One in Cork. Collins and partner Denis O’Mullane have spared no expense in converting a former lap-dancing venue into an 800-capacity House/Garage dance club. They reckon to have spent around 1 million euros (£750,000) on the work - without the cost of the building - having brought in interior designer John Duffy, and Cork-based audio consultant Chris Tyler to ensure the venue achieved both aesthetic and acoustic perfection.
It was the latter who introduced Rea Sound to the contract, as the quest began for a system that could reproduce the hard R&B-flavoured music favoured by the clientele. Visits were arranged to Fabric in London - as well as premium Martin Audio sites in Northern Ireland - by Rea Sound’s Sean Gallagher, and Peter Collins also paid a visit to the PLASA Show in September before making his commitment. Collins confirmed: "It was the experience of Fabric that led me to Martin. That was the benchmark sound, and suddenly it all just fell into place.
Club One is situated on a single floor, with two rooms linked by a tunnel. "Due to the design of the tunnel, there’s practically no sound seepage between the two rooms," records Sean Gallagher. On the main dancefloor Rea Sound have provided a four-way active system, comprising a Wavefront W8C flown in each of the four corners, with three WSX sub bass ground-stacked on either side of the dancefloor (after the
The Burswood International Resort Casino in Western Australia is one of the most popular and long-standing facilities in the country. Since opening in late 1985, Burswood has made several additions to its lighting infrastructure, with Coemar-DeSisti Australia (CDA) involved in several of these additions.
The latest redevelopment saw changes made to several areas. The tender documents included the reuse of several existing products in the nightclub area, amongst which were a range of Coemar products including Mini UltraScans (compact 200MSD moving mirror units) and Synchros (club effects lighting) - a testament to their quality and longevity. Additional specifications for the nightclub area included reference to the popular Reel EFX DF50 Diffusion Fogger - one of the world’s most popular effects units.
The lighting of the Atrium area, the large glass dome that is a major visual cue at Burswood, was made more complex with the addition of several large sails installed to reduce glare within the dome. The major lighting for this area came in the form of Futurelight MH series moving yoke fixtures. A combination of two MH860 and nine MH840 spot and wash yokes (575W) were compared with all the competition available in Australia and was chosen both on price and features.
The moving yokes are the primary fixtures used to light the sails and to create an absolutely stunning look within the Atrium area. One area, which CDA feel was also a major factor in winning the tender, was the high quality of its service and backup support for clients. The lighting equipment was suppl
The versatility of the BSS Soundweb as an expandable DSP building matrix has moved into a new dimension with Kingston Inmedia’s imaginative use of its fibre technology for carrying broadcast signals.
Kingston Inmedia, a leading supplier of satellite-centric broadband applications, are contracted by Services Sound & Vision Corporation (SSVC) to handle all the technical facilities and engineering support for British Forces Broadcasting Services (BFBS), and transmit to military bases throughout the world, with all programme streams assembled in studios at Gerrards Cross. The content travels from SSVC's Central Technical Area to Kingston's Master Control Room for uplinking to satellites from earth stations situated a few hundred yards away.
Broadcast engineer Dave Gill told us: "SSVC had asked us to investigate alternatives to the analogue copper links between the two areas. We had been looking at A to D converters and proprietary multiplexers, and someone who works for us, and who does FOH sound mixing, suggested we look at Soundweb. We needed a fibre solution - initially for fibre tie-lines, as we were experiencing problems with the copper multicore, for example with lightning strikes. We found this option on the BSS website and took it from there." A pair of fibre interface units are used to replace a standard Cat 5 Soundweb network cable. Each fibre cable will transfer eight channels of digital audio plus control data.
With approval from SSVC, Kingston Inmedia placed an initial order for four pairs of 9088LLs (line) and 9088DD (digital) with LMC Audio
The first commercial installation of the new NEXO Geo sound reinforcement system has been implemented in Paris, at the Stade de France. Although France’s premier soccer stadium is one of NEXO’s most prized showcases for its Alpha arena sound system, the venue went out to full commercial tender for sound reinforcement for its Concourse area.
Independently specified, the tender involved a four-way shoot out between different proprietary systems. NEXO won the contract with a Geo line array system, featuring 18 clusters of 4 x S-805s to cover the large concrete and asphalt Concourse, which covers the underground parking facilities and is home to four Villages of sub-attractions. The 1,750,000 sports and music fans who attend events at Stade de France can visit Animations for video game action, buy apparel and gear at the Boutique Officielle, get refreshments at Kiosque Coca-Cola, or get directions at Point info. Each Village occupies a small square about 20m on each side, attracting customers from a quadrant of the entrance apron, which surrounds the exterior of the stadium.
The NEXO system at Stade de France uses a short curved vertical array or cluster of GEO S805 loudspeakers. Each of these devices is a two-way system with a passive internal crossover network dividing an 8 inch vented woofer and a 1-inch compression driver. The driver is loaded on a patented GEO wavesource with 5° vertical and 80° horizontal coverage. This unusual pattern is achieved by using an hyperboloid acoustical mirror to reflect energy from the compression driver into the 5° arc. In
For the second consecutive year, the Puy du Fou theme park in France has used L-Acoustics sound systems for its Gallo-Roman Stadium Show, which was inaugurated in 2001 and plays between May and September.
Stéphane Gramondo, L-Acoustics’ permanent installation project manager, was in charge of evaluating the needs for this specific attraction at the Puy du Fou. He explains: "We opted for four clusters of three dV-DOSC which were integrated into the columns and tables of the scenery. The clusters were located at a slightly higher point than the actors and animals’ locations during the show, thereby allowing a very even sound pressure level within the arena."
Four SB218 subwoofers were also installed into the columns, with dV-DOSC clusters situated on top. Three dV-DOSC and four EX112 loudspeakers plus 2 SB115 were dedicated to the Governor’s rostrum and three dV-DOSC and two EX112 loudspeakers plus two SB115 were dedicated to the patrician. Stéphane Gramondo continues: "The three dV-DOSC cluster within the stadium has a vertical coverage pattern of 12° (with a variable SPL of between 102 and 109 dB(A)) and the horizontal coverage for each cluster is 120° at -6dB point, thereby enabling an homogeneous and coherent coverage of the entire audience geometry. Laurent Albert, technical director of the Puy du Fou, comments: "Results in terms of intelligibility are astonishing, I have heard people during the show asking ‘where does the sound come from’!"
This particular audio installation is in fact a collaboration bet
Harris, Grant Associates (HGA), a leading consultant in acoustic and technical systems design, has announced the launch of their new website. Since 1983, HGA has been responsible for designing some of the world’s most auspicious commercial television, film, and recording facilities, as well as advanced audio, video and control networks in private homes and onboard superyachts. The online portfolio now details over 40 of these projects, from the most successful commercial recording studio in the world - the Hit Factory in New York, to Peter Gabriel’s visionary Realworld in Bath.
Over 20 Virtual Reality images allow you to walk around facilities like Sony Music’s premier European recording facility, the uniquely decorated Strongroom studios and the Cinerama Theatre in Seattle, designed by consultant Neil Grant to deliver "the richest motion-picture surround experience in the world."
This year will also see the design and construction of an acoustically-optimised demonstration theatre and Rocket Powered Pro-tools system at Harris, Grant Associate’s UK headquarters. The step-by-step design, build and commissioning process will be followed on the website news-page over the next few months. Once completed, the facility will demonstrate the company’s expertise in the home theatre market as well as in the professional audio sector, offering custom touch screen control systems, acoustic optimisation techniques and interior design, CATT acoustic prediction and auralisation software, presenting audio simulations of different room scenarios w
That is the upbeat message from PLASA’s new Show Director, Sue Saint. Celebrating its 25th year, the PLASA Show is the world’s pre-eminent light, sound and audio-visual event, attracting major brands every year, and this year is no exception.
Stand bookings are currently at 82%, with top names such as Vari-Lite, Sennheiser, Martin Professional, Denon, BSS Audio and Total Fabrication already booked. The show pulls in over 13,000 visitors from the UK and abroad each year, having become the main marketplace for the £11billion entertainment technology industry.
"The show is evolving continually," commented Saint, "and one of the key trends emerging is the growing number of manufacturers choosing to exhibit in their own right, rather than rely solely on representation through distributors. In addition, many long-standing exhibitors, including Numark, Peavey, Sound Technology, Avolites and SGM, have reaffirmed the importance of PLASA by booking larger stands. Other major industry players are also recognizing the role the show can play in developing their businesses and this year will see Marantz, Tascam and Duran Audio exhibiting for the first time. All this is happening at a time when the economy generally has been talked down, but the increased interest in the show is clear evidence that the market is picking up and that the PLASA Show is an integral part of the exhibitors’ marketing armoury."
Steve Warren, sales director of Avolites, an exhibitor at the show for the past 13 years, added: "The PLASA Show is clearly the most imp
The Thorndike Theatre in Leatherhead, Surrey, was opened by Dame Sybil Thorndike in 1969. Designed by Roderick Ham, the theatre was built and funded with enthusiastic support from local theatre groups, and went on to become an ambitious and high profile producing theatre. Its manager and founder, Hazel Vincent Wallace, was able to woo well-known actors and directors from London to create some remarkable productions.
At its height, the Thorndike Theatre’s club had 12,000 members; it was described as ‘a jewel of a theatre’. But despite the fact that houses were largely full, the economics of regional theatre meant that there was a dependence on subsidy and local grants. Inevitably there was never enough, and it was eventually closed down in 1997. Only the building’s Grade 2 listing saved it from demolition.
But late last year, following six months of refurbishment work, the Thorndike re-opened as a working theatre under the ownership of a Christian organisation, Pioneer People, who took out a 15-year lease in April 2001. Now called simply ‘The Theatre’, the venue will play host to a mixture of performances and community projects, as well as conferences, corporate events, cinema and worship.
PP’s technical manager, Michael Forestier-Walker, found a theatre that had suffered leaks and an infestation of pigeons. The clean up was no small task. For the replacement of the lighting installation, he turned to experienced lighting designer Richard Horley. Horley’s design work includes visitor attractions such as
When the City of Manchester Stadium heralds the start of the XVII Commonwealth Games on July 25, public information will be broadcast to the maximum 38,000-capacity seating via a sophisticated new sound system.Built by contractor Laing, Arup’s design of the £77m stadium is based on an eight-mast and cable structure, ensuring that all seats have uninterrupted views of the pitch. Every part of the stadium structure is used to support the 600-ton undulating roof which covers every seat.
Its acoustics have been cleverly tuned to enhance the crowd noise by using the underside of the roof. Arup Acoustics has provided this design service, as well as the building acoustics and overall sound system design, in addition to an environmental noise impact assessment on residences in close proximity to the site.
Blackburn-based Romers successfully tendered for the entire Public Address/Voice Alarm installation contract, drawing on the TOA catalogue to fulfil Arup’s document specification. John Caton, managing director of Romers revealed that this is the largest single project the company has ever undertaken. "The stipulation was that we had to use a branded speaker for the speech reinforcement, and TOA MS1s fully meet the requirements," explained Caton, adding that the enclosure is also in use at Manchester City’s Maine Road facility - and the football club insisted on continuity in the new ground.
The TOA MS1 speaker was designed for sports stadia use and incorporates their touring driver - the twin-magnet sub-woofer (2 x 12" and horn) - with the 2
Yamaha's Commercial Audio Division has announced the shipment of its first DM2000 digital mixing console to 2nd Sense Broadcast Ltd, based at Millennium Studios, Elstree. The console, bearing the serial number 0001, is the world's first professional installation and 2nd Sense managing director Andy Hewitt took the opportunity to host two open days for current and potential new clients to coincide with the DM2000's arrival. The open days also provided an opportunity for other engineers and members of the Institute of Broadcast Sound to see and hear the console at work in the newly completed video edit and production suite.
Hewitt, a former BBC sound engineer, was one of a number of sound engineers approached by Yamaha's R&D department two years ago to help specify the next generation of Yamaha digital audio mixing consoles. The result of those consultations, which took place simultaneously with pro users throughout the world is the noise free 24-bit / 96kHz DM2000 hailed as a complete, multi-platform mixing system for the commercial audio market.
Hewitt has always liked the Yamaha marque: he partly attributes the strong growth of 2nd Sense Broadcast to the three original Yamaha O2R consoles installed six years ago, the desks providing an affordable and professional quality facility to clients at a time when budgets were being trimmed down. 2nd Sense Broadcast now have an ever growing list of high profile clients including Channel 4, all the BBC channels and the ITV network.
‘The Deep’, the world’s only Submarium, is Hull’s £45.5 million Millennium Commission lottery project. Opened on 22 March by Prince Andrew, the complex was designed by Sir Terry Farrell with Lighting Technology working alongside Waterman Gore to provide the ‘above tank’ lighting. A totally new concept in visitor attractions, the Submarium is a dramatic fusion of aquaria combined with a descriptive voyage through the worlds Oceans.
’The Deep’ boasts the deepest water tank in Europe. This and the 11 tanks are home to seven species of shark and thousands of other fish. These range in size from the ‘Endless Oceans’ tank which holds 2.3 million litres of salt water to the smaller ‘Jewel’ tanks which hold just 1 cubic metre. The interior spaces are strongly influenced by the physical nature of the ocean and maximum use is made of the three dimensional spaces. At the building's core, a concrete structure containing the main fish tank recreates the conditions found in the Pacific.
For the above tank lighting, Waterman Gore called in Jonathan Hilton of Lighting Technology to work alongside their US consultant, Chris Baldwin, in order to establish the lighting concept. As such, the structure and the lighting installed above the various tanks by Lighting Technology, has been designed to create a sensation of immersion within the ocean environment. In order to create this impression, an array of ‘variable focus’ fittings were selected from the Astralux range of marine searchlights. Within the confi
The Oxford Street Virgin Megastore has installed a D.A.S. PA system for use on its high profile in-store live stage. Arizona-based Jimmy Eat World was the first band to use the full system, appearing there recently, in the middle of a sell-out UK tour promoting their ‘Self Titled’ studio album and new single ‘The Middle’.
The D.A.S. system, comprising four Compact 1 bi-amplified,1000W, 133dB three-way system cabs and four SUB-118 self-powered 500W 131dB cabinets, was specified by Virgin Megastore events manager Simon Dornan who was impressed by a hired D.A.S. system during an in-store set by UK band Elbow. The Megastore provides a launchpad for UK promotional campaigns for many up and coming and established artists and Dornan is well aware of the quality required: "The Megastore is a major date for a wide range of artists and the success of the events relies on great sound and great performance. The D.A.S. system is clearly capable of delivering really good, smooth sound, with plenty of bottom end - perfectly suited to the excellent Jimmy Eat World acoustic set. We also use the system to augment hired-in systems, but we’re seriously looking into extending the house system with more D.A.S. units to cope with bigger electric sets."
Celestion's flagship CXi range of sound reinforcement cabinets is increasing in popularity with contractors specifying systems for permanent installation in nightclubs. One of the most impressive recent contracts has been that for the new club Afterlife in Burnley.
The new three-floor multi-venue has been opened in Burnley by Obar Ltd, sited in a former seamen's temple. With a capacity for 1,100 people, Afterlife is one of the largest venues in the region, themed to give clubbers a chance to drink in the Underworld and Judgement Bars before going up to the Heaven nightclub.
Promotion Time, the sound and lighting contractor from Co. Durham, was commissioned to equip the club, and specified Celestion throughout. The three floors of Afterlife each have their own identity: in the basement, a warm dark-red interior called the Underworld Bar features Celestion SR1s supplemented by Substation bass bins. On the ground floor, a similar SR1/Substation combination is used by the Judgement Bar, a totally different interior made up in steel and wood.
The customer quite literally ascends to Heaven, which is on the top floor. Unusually for a nightclub, Heaven has an all-white interior. A Celestion CXi system has been installed around the dancefloor, using four CXi 1221 full-range cabinets and four 118 bass bins. Promotion Time has used MC2 amplification for all three systems; they also specified and installed intelligent lighting systems, controlled by Show Magic, for all the bars.
Back in 2000, funding proposals for a £10.4m all-seater stadium at Bournemouth AFC’s Dean Court HQ were drawn up as part of a 15-year business plan. With help from Bournemouth Borough Council, supplemented by a record £3m package from the Football Stadia Improvement Fund, the Club were well on their way to reaching the scaled-down first phase of the targeted £5.5m-£6.5m. The shortfall of around £2m was made up by Cherries supporters and thus the first phase of the new Fitness First Stadium, with the construction of three new stands - and rotation through 90° of the playing surface - was unveiled earlier this season.
With Barr Construction undertaking the building construction, it was left to turnstile and gate specialists, Swift Tate Security Technology Ltd, to offer a turnkey solution by specifying a fully-featured public address/voice alarm system. And with 23 years’ experience behind them they turned to TOA for the solution. The system is designed to provide both public address facilities and voice evacuation, integrated with the fire alarm system.
The installation features 21 of TOA’s new purpose-built ES-0871 stadium boxes in a distributed 100V line design, controlled from the SX-1000 Smart Matrix Control System. Eight enclosures are distributed into each of the two long East/West stands and five in the North stand behind the goal.Distributing sound evenly over a 90° x 60° dispersion pattern from a CD horn and 12in mid/LF, the loudspeakers are ideal for the application. The weatherproof ES-0871s come with a rotatable horn and at Bournemout
It’s been water, water everywhere recently for D J Willrich Ltd (DJW), as the Hampshire-based AV and multi-media specialists have recently completed work on the saltwater Bournemouth Oceanarium in Dorset and the freshwater Lakeside Aquarium at Newby Bridge on the shores of Lake Windermere.
Working within a deadline of just three weeks, DJW installed in the Bournemouth Oceanarium three Sony plasma displays, three touch screen quiz-based interactives and, with the help of strobe lighting and Bose speakers, the sound of a rainforest thunderstorm that automatically comes to life every 20 minutes.
Visitors to the Lake District are obviously used to it raining more frequently there since DJW’s thunderstorm sound simulation at the Lakeside Aquarium proved to be so popular that it now runs every three minutes! In addition to this, DJW has also installed two Sony plasma displays, lighting and sound controls, plus an AV theatre featuring a 2 metre screen and projector showing images of the surrounding Lake District hills, lakes and wildlife.
As well as having water in common, Bournemouth and Lakeside both have BSS 9088 Soundwebs and a 9010 Jellyfish remote - the Jellyfish being essential to enable staff to control the audio systems from the office. "The Soundwebs are crucial to the easy operation of the audio systems within the two aquariums," said Kevin Southwell, project manager. "It means that staff can vary sound levels from their main office depending on whether it's a quiet or busy day. They also have an easy facility for using radio microphone