Audio News

Signing up for Autograph
Wednesday, 25 October 2000

Autograph Sound Recording has announced the promotion of Andy Brown to operations manager, a role that will engage him in leading the company's established sound rental business into a new era. His new role will involve liaising with the in-house sound designers, production sound engineers and hire department. Further to Brown's appointment, two new production sound engineers - Alex Apthorpe and Ken Hampton - will be joining the Autograph team. Apthorpe has spent three years working in the sound department at the National Theatre and will look after Autograph's audio software library and installations whilst Hampton will be bringing with him excellent sound engineering skills particularly in the specialist field of large-scale theatrical touring production. Chairman Andrew Bruce has also signalled Autograph’s intention next year to strengthen the team further with additional engineering personnel.

LCS Unveil the Cue Console
Tuesday, 24 October 2000

LCS will introduce, through its newly-appointed UK distributors Sound Dept, the CueConsole - a modular control surface which replaces the conventional front-of-house sound mixer. CueConsole's new approach to digital control surfaces is its adaptable modularity. Four types of control modules interface with the core of the system - the SuperNova or new Matrix3 audio engines. (The foundation of Matrix3 is the 3U LX-300 frame. Up to 32 of these frames can be linked in a fault-tolerant network, supporting a maximum of 400 audio inputs and 512 audio outputs.) The modules are flexible in that they can be configured in whatever way is most convenient for the sound designer/engineer. Because CueConsole is merely a control surface, with no audio passing through it, the interface back to the audio engine is standard network interface cable. As a result, the modules can be set up in the conventional front-of-house position, or alternatively different modules can be sited in different locations.

Federal Signal in Capital Move
Tuesday, 24 October 2000

Cheshire-based Federal Signal has opened its first London office. Based in Tapping Street in Docklands, the new office provides a regional marketing and sales base to support Federal Signal's strategy of designing and developing voice alarm systems based on its Millbank range. The company, which works for London customers such as the London Underground, has recently launched a range of new products under the Millbank brand. These include the multi-zone broadcast voice alarm system Verifire, Talisman III dynamic audio induction amplifiers and Ultima II integrated PA amplifiers. Area sales manager Darren Morgan will head up the London operation.

Manchester's Zion
Monday, 23 October 2000

After several months of negotiations, Stagetec (UK) Ltd has been awarded the entire technical equipment supply and installation contract for the Zion Arts Centre in Manchester. The installation includes a lighting system with Compulite Micron 4D console, the new CompuDIM 2000 digital dimmer racks, Robert Juliat and Selecon luminaires fitted with Compulite colour scrollers, a sound system with Nexo speakers, Crown amplifiers and Allen & Heath mixing consoles, a full AV system with projection screens, digital projectors and monitoring equipment, curtain tracks and a communication and paging system. The project is funded by the Arts Council and is due to open towards the end of November. The project specification has been drawn up and will be overseen by technical consultant Steve Curtis from the Green Room in Manchester.

CEI Relocates
Friday, 20 October 2000

Current Events International, a technical production company offering lighting, audio and production management services, equipment rentals, and systems integration, has relocated and expanded its San Francisco facility. The company has moved to a larger facility in Oakland, occupying over 17,000sq.ft of office and warehouse space. Headquartered in Philadelphia, PA, Current Events International is an award-winning technical production company with full service facilities in San Francisco and Washington, DC.

LIPA Upgrade with DAS Audio
Friday, 20 October 2000

The world-famous Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts (LIPA) has re-equipped its five-studio recording complex with DAS Monitor 6 close field monitors throughout. The order for 13 units includes the upgrading of studio 2 to full 5.1 surround sound production capability. The new Monitor series from DAS Audio marks the company's return to the studio market after almost 30 years of exclusively designing and manufacturing sound reinforcement systems.

Paul Smith Joins ET
Wednesday, 18 October 2000

DJ equipment manufacturer Entertainment Technology, part of the Leaf Group, has announced a new appointment to its team, with Paul Smith joining as product/sales manager for the Titan DJ brand. Smith previously worked with Sapphires Retail.

UHI Chooses beyerdynamic
Wednesday, 18 October 2000

The University of the Highlands and Islands Project (UHI), which runs one of Europe's largest teaching and learning videoconferencing networks, has further enhanced its provision by adding beyerdynamic's MCW wireless conference system. Known as the 'Mediawall', the system incorporates the very latest in presentation technology and was supplied and installed by McMillan Aberdeen under the guidance of Graham Stellard who coordinated the project. The beyerdynamic MCW system was integrated to expand the operational facilities by allowing groups of people to exchange information emulating a lecture theatre situation as well as being used for management meeting by the University's governing principles.

Images of War
Wednesday, 18 October 2000

Built by Sir Christopher Wren in 1685, the Royal Hospital in Chelsea is a retirement home for old soldiers - the famous Chelsea Pensioners. The London landmark was an unusual venue for a technically sophisticated son et lumiere show, 'Men in Scarlet', commemorating its 300 year history. The Hospital itself acted as the projection screen, and backdrop for the light show, while the soundtrack was presented in surround sound. Manning the 48-input Midas Heritage console for a week of shows was Huw Richards, for many years the FOH engineer for Oasis - which some might say was ideal preparation for mixing a soundtrack of great British battles. He and his system techs Iain Reinhold and Jonathan Hitching battled torrential rains to present a soundtrack so accurate and realistic that one member of the audience suffered a heart attack. SSE Hire of Birmingham provided a predominantly NEXO Alpha sound system which was controlled by a TiMax acoustic imaging system from Outboard Electronics.

Hands-on Appointment for beyerdynamic
Tuesday, 17 October 2000

beyerdynamic has appointed Matthew Nettlefold to its technical sales team. Formerly a sales representative with an active interest in the music industry, Nettlefold spends his spare time working in the project studio he built and installed in his home, and is currently putting the new XTA SIDD Dynamics processor though its paces.

Southwest Sound & Light Show
Tuesday, 17 October 2000

Southwest Sound & Light have announced that hey will be organising and hosting the Southwest Sound & Light Show on Sunday 28th and Monday 29th January 2001, from 10am to 8pm both days. The venue is the Clubhouse at Golden Sands Holiday park, Dawlish, Devon, and admission will be free. Organiser Paul Goody said: "The event will be of interest to all people involved in the leisure industry - with clubs, pubs, holiday centres, leisure centres, bands, DJs and karaoke. Visitors will be able to see and try the latest in amplifiers, mixers, loudspeakers, microphones, CD players, mixing kits, effects units, harmonisers, lighting effects for stage and club and large screen video." Call Paul Goody for further information: 01626 890806

ProMix/Electrotec Expands in Las Vegas
Monday, 16 October 2000

Production Resource Group (PRG) has announced an expansion of its audio operations in the Las Vegas market. The West Coast Audio Group has relocated its concert touring inventory and assembly operations from Los Angeles to Las Vegas. The Los Angeles-based audio sales staff remain at their current Cohasset Street location in Burbank. Sister company Fourth Phase Burbank (formerly Production Lighting Systems and Production Arts West) will join them in late October. Inventory to support the local corporate theatre, television and special event market, as well as technical service also remains in Los Angeles.As the expanded audio operations in Las Vegas required additional space, ProMix/Electrotec Las Vegas is in the process of relocating to the PRG facility at 6050 S. Valley View Blvd, already the home of Entolo Las Vegas (formerly Scenic Technologies) and Fourth Phase Las Vegas (formerly Cinema Services).

CP Sound Expands and Moves
Monday, 16 October 2000

CP Sound, creative audio, lighting and AV designer and installer, is moving to a newly-acquired, hugely expanded premises in central Staines. CP Sound's operation has expanded so rapidly in the last two years that it has outgrown the site in Chertsey that has contained it for the last three years. The new building, workshops, warehouse space and offices are part of a purpose-built industrial unit. The extra space and rationalisation of resources will allow CP Sound's hectic production schedules to be managed even faster and more efficiently. It will also enhance its already well-established quality of service.As from today the company's new contact, the new contact details are Unit 3 Tim's Boat Yard, Timsway, Staines, Middlesex, TW18 3JZ. Tel: +44 1784 461614.

Next Two Joins Forces with MEDC Ltd
Friday, 13 October 2000

Next Two, manufacturer and supplier of public address and voice alarm loudspeakers to industry and commerce, has recently been acquired by MEDC Ltd, specialists in the design, manufacture and application of field devices for potentially explosive atmospheres. Managing Director, Chris Simms told PLASA Publishing: "The Next Two product range will complement and extend the existing MEDC range. It is our intention to develop the product line by improvement of existing products as well as the ongoing introduction of new products." Next Two will continue its sales operations from its base at Uckfield, East Sussex, with the same team.

Mackie Says Goodbye to PD
Thursday, 12 October 2000

Mackie Designs has announced that PD (a.k.a 'Phy Deaux'), the company's corporate Chihuahua, passed away on 28th September. PD's image as Mackie's Corporate Chihuahua rose to prominence in Mackie collateral material, advertisements, websites, marketing videos and product manuals. So well-known was PD to Mackie employees, distributors, reps and customers, that in 1995 a bronze cast of PD was produced as the highest award that could be bestowed upon a Mackie Designs sales rep. Ron Koliha, Mackie's Marketing Deity and PD's owner, told us: "PD was the one who I could turn to for honest critiques of all of my marketing concepts. If she didn't like it, she would simply piddle on it . . . literally. PD will surely be missed."

New Recruit for Dobson Sound
Thursday, 12 October 2000

In a move which reflects their continuing commitment to providing the highest possible quality service to their customers, London-based rental company, Dobson Sound Productions Ltd. is pleased to welcome Nicholas Hughes to the role of technical manager. In addition to being a graduate of the prestigious Tonmeister course at the University of Surrey, Nick also comes with extensive experience in the service and repair of high end professional audio equipment, most recently with Boffin Island, the service company for Funky Junk. He is thus ideally suited to take on the mantle of building a full service department for Dobsons.

Orbital Brings ML5000 Into the Mix
Thursday, 12 October 2000

London-based theatre sound specialist Orbital Sound has acquired three Allen & Heath ML5000 mixing consoles from the London branch of LMC Audio Systems. Specified in advance by Orbital for their forthcoming Winter season, the console will be employed on Christmas Pantomime productions, as well as Bill Kenwright's production of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. The nature of the Christmas shows means tight production deadlines and limited budgets. Orbital has a long association with Pantomime productions, and Orbital's hire department, headed by Jane Finlay and Dan Parton, who specified the desks, offers practical advice gained from years of experience in this most traditional of theatre.The addition of the cost-effective Allen & Heath ML5000 complements Orbital's extensive inventory of high-specification equipment. The ML5000 is ideal for any production working within limited budgetary constraints and enables Orbital to provide a cost effective, reliable solution for these shows.

ARX Launches ZA Zone Amps
Wednesday, 11 October 2000

ARX Systems has introduced a series of multi-channel power amplifiers with built-in zoning features. Comprising three models, the ZA Series is designed for any multi-channel application including paging systems, foreground and background music, AV systems, loudspeaker multi-zoning, etc. The ZA Series features AutoLink function which automatically links channel inputs as required, eliminating the extra expense of an external zoner/splitter. The models are the ZA400 (4-channel, 250W pc into 4 ohms); ZA600 (6-channel, 125W pc into 4 ohms); ZA800 (8-channel, 125W pc into 4 ohms). Initial installations of the ZA Series include the CSIRO Science Centre in Canberra, Australia and the Ing-Ge Ceramics Museum in Taipei, Taiwan.

Trantec Wins Millionaire Vote
Wednesday, 11 October 2000

Contestants on Carlton Television's 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?' Will now talk to compere Chris Tarrant through Trantec's multi award-winning synthesised UHF S5000 radio mic system - thanks to the initiative of a consortium of six freelance sound engineers. The newly-formed Elstree Sound Associates was set up specifically to provide audio services to Celador Productions, makers of 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?' at Elstree Studios - giving them the opportunity to break free from some of the products generally used in TV production.One of the supervisors, Chris Thorpe - who sound mixes alongside fellow Elstree Sound Associates engineer, Kevin Duff - was happy to recommend Trantec, having used the system at the OB/derig facility Roll to Record and Fountain Studios in Wembley. Thorpe ordered 16 personals (fitted with Sony ECM 77 clip-on mics) and two hand-held systems, along with a couple of distribution units and computer monitoring.The other four members of Elstree Sound Associates are Robert Wahl, John Galbraith, Barry Mizen and Vernon Cooper.

New Midas Distributor for Belarus
Tuesday, 10 October 2000

The Klark Teknik Group has appointed ART Studio to distribute Midas products in Belarus. This is the first time that Midas has been represented in White Russia and the company has already got off to a flying start with the sale of a Heritage 2000 to the Belarussian State Orchestra in Minsk. Finberg, the State Orchestra's own rental company, is one of the largest in Belarus and caters for many prestigious events throughout the country. One of the first events for the new console was a concert by the award-winning French singer, Patricia Kaas. Since the sale of the Heritage 2000, ART Studio has also purchased a Heritage 1000 for its own rental department. Its first outing will be for Deep Purple, playing the Sports Palace in Minsk in early November as part of a European tour.

RMPA Opts for EV PolarChoice Mics
Tuesday, 10 October 2000

Worcestershire-based rental company RMPA has just invested in ElectroVoice's latest microphone launch, PolarChoice, purchased from EV's UK distributor, Shuttlesound. PolarChoice podium microphones offer the option of four different pickup patterns, allowing the selection of the best pattern for the application. The ability to select from omnidirectional, cardioid, supercardioid or hypercardioid assures the maximum protection against system feedback and ambient background noise. RMPA's Rick Bailey commented: "They really are excellent microphones in every way . . . The gain they offer before feedback is impressive, and the sound quality is superb. And it's just as well because the very first event they went out on was the MOD's World Symposium on speech intelligibility and speech coding at the DERA headquarters in Farnborough! However, the client was as impressed with the mics' performance as I was."

Lamba Plans for Future
Monday, 9 October 2000

With the appointment of Gareth Collyer and Gerry Frost as shareholding directors, Lamba plc chairman Frank Irish, has set out a strategic blueprint for the company's future. Collyer and Frost have been on the company's main board of directors for over 18 months, and will maintain their active roles as technical director and sales director, respectively. Irish commented: "With recent product acquisitions creating a new dynamic in the company, we believe the timing is right to devolve more responsibility to Gareth and Gerry, to ensure continued development over the next decade." Lamba has recently secured two new exclusive UK distribution accounts - for Nady Systems and Cerwin Vega! Hi-Fi, as well as consolidating the UK representation of an expanded Stanton Magnetics range. To accommodate this growth, Irish has simultaneously announced the imminent relocation of Lamba plc to larger, purpose-built premises in St Albans, including a warehouse and distribution centre.

Listening in on Big Brother
Monday, 9 October 2000

The UK's phenomenally successful television production, Big Brother, which was screened through July and August, relied heavily on Sennheiser RF systems to relay seamless sound transmission, not only for the nightly Channel 4 broadcast, but also for the 24-hour Internet broadcast. Each contestant on the show was fitted with a clip mic and Sennheiser SK50 miniature body-pack transmitter, supplied by Cine Video Audio Hire Division. These were to be worn at all times, except when showering or sleeping. The Sennheiser EM1046-UHF receiver rack was used in conjunction with Cine Video's own Triax remote antennae system, enabling the RF aerials to cover a vast area.

Marquee Product Showcase at Lyric
Monday, 9 October 2000

The Lyric Theatre in Hammersmith was the stage for a recent pro audio open day for two of Marquee Audio's main suppliers - Yamaha and Turbosound. Yamaha demonstrated its latest digital family, the PM1D, DME32 and AW4416 desks, which are now being shipped, while Turbosound's new family of TQ Series loudspeakers - the TQ440/TQ425, TQ259, TQ220, TQ225 and TQ330 lined up alongside the TCS35, also heavily specified by Marquee Audio. The event attracted some of the UK's leading audio consultants. Marquee's Andy Huffer commented: "This was a superb chance for both end-users and manufacturers to experience new products in a realistic environment. The Yamaha PM1D and DME32 ran the show, switching between the Turbosound speakers which were suspended around the stage."


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