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Issue 17 • March 2009

LIVE • COMMERCIAL • RECORDING • BROADCAST

Stadium Sound: Audio systems in some of the world’s biggest arenas

Crossrail One

www.audioprointernational.com

NAMM Review

MPG Awards

Andrew Nissley Innerpartysystems’ missing link

VMB Lifts A new standard for Towerlifts

ems

Power amps driving the big syst

PLUS ISE REVIEW • IN SESSION • NEWS • SYMPHONIC ORCHESTRA REVIEW


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ISSUE 17 March 2009

CONTENTS

EVENTS PROLIGHT+SOUND PREVIEW • 8 Advance news from the big event

NAMM REVIEW • 10 A rundown of LA’s hottest show

ISE REPORT • 12 A report from Europe’s fastest growing show

MPG AWARDS • 16 Duffy, Brian Eno and Chris Blair win big

FEATURES ANDREW NISSLEY • 28 An interview with Innerpartysystem’s FOH engineer and fifth member

VMB LIFTS • 30 Raising the bar for line array lifting systems

CROSSRAIL ONE • 32 Will the Soho post community suffer?

LIVE SOUND STADIUM SOUND • 25 A look at the audio gear providing coverage for the hundreds of thousands of fans attending events at some of world’s biggest stadiums

Audio Pro International is published 11 times a year by Intent Media ~ Saxon House, 6A St. Andrew Street, Hertford SG14 1JA, England

Intent Media is a member of the Audit Bureau of Circulation and the Periodical Publishers Association

© Intent Media 2009. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form or by any means without prior permission of the copyright owners. Printed by Manson Group, AL3 6PZ

ISSN: 1755-4918

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SUBSCRIPTIONS UK: Free Europe: £60 Rest of world: £90 If you or one of your colleagues would like to request a subscription to Audio Pro International, please email audio.subscriptions@c-cms.com or call 01580 883848

COVER FEATURE • 18

POWER AMPS A comprehensive rundown of the most powerful amplifiers on the market

Contacts Editorial: +44 (0)1992 535646 Ads: +44 (0)1992 535647 Editor: Andrew Low andrew.low@intentmedia.co.uk

Contributing Editor: Gary Cooper gary@garycooper.biz

Deputy Editor: Rob Hughes rob.hughes@intentmedia.co.uk

Associate Editor: Samantha Loveday samantha.loveday@intentmedia.co.uk

Advertising Manager:Darrell Carter darrell.carter@intentmedia.co.uk

Editorial Production: Helen French helen.french@intentmedia.co.uk

Ad Production:Rosie McKeown rosie.mckeown@intentmedia.co.uk

Subscriptions Manager: Hannah Short hannah.short@intentmedia.co.uk

Designer: Claire Brocklesby claire.brocklesby@intentmedia.co.uk

Managing Editor: Andy Barrett mipro@intentmedia.co.uk

Publisher: Dave Roberts dave.roberts@intentmedia.co.uk

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NEWS • 4-5

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> Regulars: Applications 34 In Session 36 People 38 Distribution 39 Products 40 Mixdown 50


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> NEWS

EDITORIAL

W

e had a bit of comedy relief this month after discovering that a petition against a proposed government law that would require venues applying or re-applying for an entertainment licence in the UK to install noise control devices was unfounded. The petition, signed by over 80,000 protestors on the Downing Street website, turned out to be a complete farce. It caused such a stir on the site that the Prime Minister’s office issued a statement ensuring that no such law is in discussion (see full story on Page 5). Despite the petition being unsubstantiated, the fact that so many people took the time to sign, and in some cases, take it upon themselves to post comments, articles and blogs online to promote it and protest the proposed law, is testament to the passion people have towards live music. Anyone reading this magazine will know that live music has seen a huge uplift in recent years, with technology constantly developed to match the growing needs of the sector. It is refreshing to see that the people involved are not only so zealous about this area of the market, but will act in great numbers to reject any obstruction of what remains a truly unique and artistic environment. While the recording industry has been forced to lower its standards, as low quality MP3 files have become accepted by the mainstream, attempts to obstruct the live music experience are vehemently opposed, even when they are bogus.

Andrew Low - Editor andrew.low@intentmedia.co.uk

The latest

NEWS

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Loud withdraws from NASDAQ Move follows reallocation of production for a number of EAW and Mackie products

“The burden in time and costs of public reporting obligations have a real effect on our results.” Rodney Olson – Loud Tech LOUD TECHNOLOGIES HAS voluntarily withdrawn from its listing on the NASDAQ stock exchange. Officials at Washington-based Loud, which owns EAW, Martin Audio, Mackie, Ampeg, Alvarez, Crate, Blackheart and Tapco, cited many reasons for the move, including high costs for continued stock exchange listing, management time to maintain listing, limited trading in the company’s shares, the chance that Loud won’t meet minimum exchange requirements in the future, and the lack of analysts who cover the company’s stock. Rodney Olson, CEO, commented: “The burden in time and costs associated with public reporting

obligations have a real effect on our results. In addition, due to our small market capitalisation, we have not enjoyed many of the benefits traditionally associated with a NASDAQ listing.” At the time of writing, Loud was in contravention of the NASDAQ requirement that necessitate it to file a 10-Q report with the Securities and Exchange Commission. This follows the troubled multinational’s announcement of two new contract manufacturing (CM) partners and the reallocation of production facilites for a number of EAW and Mackie products across its worldwide supply chain.

U2 consider bid on Olympic Bono and The Edge crunch the numbers to save EMI’s recently closed London recording studios U2 ARE CONSIDERING the acquisition of London’s legendary Olympic Studios from owner EMI Records, The Sun has reported. This follows the band’s use of the southwest London studio’s Barnes Room to record part of their newly released album No Line On The Horizon. “Bono, Edge and the rest of the band really enjoyed their time in Olympic. They knuckled down and really responded well to the place’s atmosphere,” a source told the newspaper, adding that, although the Irish rock band already have their own recording and rehearsal studio in 4

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Dublin, “they feel that Olympic could be a very wise investment – they’re totting up some figures at the moment. If the maths works out, there’s every chance they will put an offer in for the studio.”

The fate of Olympic has been uncertain since studio owners, record label EMI, recently closed the space stating that it was not making enough money to justify its maintenance and subsequently put the building on the

market. EMI has blamed shrinking recording budgets and economic downturn as the reason for closing the studio. The building, reportedly worth millions, has hosted many iconic artists over the years, including Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin and The Rolling Stones. In recent years, the studio’s Bunker has also been a musicalhome to producers Stephen Street and Cenzo Townshend. The pair helped create recordings for charttopping artists such as Snow Patrol and, more recently, Pete Doherty. www.audioprointernational.com


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A review of the recordbreaking ISE 2009

A full rundown of the first MPG Awards

The latest news on Soho’s new Crossrail

NEWS <

Soundking Group acquires Cadac Chinese company purchases ailing UK console manufacturer, all employees retained SOUNDKING GROUP Company has confirmed the company’s purchase of assets, trademark and intellectual property of Cadac Electronics. The Chinese company has also stated that all 25 Cadac employees will be retained, with its R&D and production offices remaining in the UK. The Soundking Group Company is a prominent Chinese audio manufacturer with 20-years experience. It was also a major supplier for the Beijing Olympic Games in 2008. Mr Xianggui Wang, president and founder of Soundking Group Company, stated: “I am personally delighted that I have been able to bring the world-famous Cadac brand and its outstanding products into the Soundking Group. I am also extremely happy that we have been able to retain all Cadac employees and to

protect their jobs in this time of economic uncertainty. The Cadac R&D team will form the European core of Soundking Group’s global R&D effort, enabling us to draw on Cadac’s high level of expertise in analogue and digital audio and translate this into new products across the entire Group.” “The last few months have been difficult for us, our employees, our customers and our suppliers,” added Bob Thomas, Cadac’s general manager. “Now that we have endured this period, the future looks extremely bright, and we will be working quickly to re-establish Cadac in its core markets. Soundking Group is investing $6m in Cadac and in new product development, highlighting its commitment and belief in the market opportunity presented by our top quality global brand.”

Bob Thomas is now the general manager of the newly-formed Cadac Holdings

Petition against noise limiters required for UK venues unwarranted Prime Minister’s office forced to make an official statement to debunk rumours started by a false petition THE PETITION AGAINST compulsory noise limiters in Great Britian’s live music venues is now closed, having become the number one campaign on the Prime Minister’s website. The false petition recieved a tremendous amount of support, with over 86,000 signatures – more than double that of the petition calling on the PM to impose an arms embargo on Israel following its Gaza offensive. Both the government and the petitioner himself have acknowledged that this was largely unnecessary, with no truth in claims that the government is planning to introduce a requirement for entertainment venues to fit noise control devices. Warren James, who started the campaign in 2007, noted on his website: “It is great to see so many people supporting the comments made on the e-petition on the Downing Street website which started early in www.audioprointernational.com

2008, all of you seem to agree with the issue raised, although the issue that I was angry with never actually came to fruition. It is a fact that this never happened in 2008, thus allowing live music venues to continue their operaion reasonabl' un-interrupted.” The Prime Minister’s office responded by stating: “Each Local Licensing Authority considers every live music application on its merits, and decisions are made entirely by them. However, the Licensing Act 2003 does not allow mandatory conditions for live music to be imposed across the board. It would not be possible to impose such a condition without a change in the law and such a change is not, and never has been, on the Government’s agenda. There is also no legal requirement under health and safety legislation for entertainment venues to have noise control devices fitted, nor is there any proposal in review.”

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> NEWS

Soundcraft releases the Si2 Second digital console in less than five months proves to be smallest yet from British manufacturer SOUNDCRAFT STUDER seems to be churning out digital consoles these days, having announced the release of the Si2 – the second in less than five months from the Soundcraft stable, which now has four models under its belt. The new board is a smaller brother to the Si3, released at PLASA08, and is set to be a strong contender in a market of ever-shrinking live consoles. Undoubtedly an attractive option to those looking to acquire a highspec, small format digital console, without having to remortage their office, the Si2 has 48 mic inputs mapped on 24 faders, (the Si3 has 64 inputs) four dedicated stereo

Undoubtedly an attractive option for companies looking to acquire a high-spec, small format digital console without having to remortgage their office

line channels, four dedicated FX returns from the four stereo Lexicon FX processors, eight-balanced insert sends and eight balanced insert returns. 24 group/aux busses are available at all times, along with eight matrix busses, monitor talkback and main bus outputs. Every input and output of the console has its own dedicated socket on the back of the console. Similar to the Si3, the Si2 uses a combination of rotary encoders and OLED screens on every channel, enabling the engineer to mix at the

source without having to flip through pages on a central screen – welcomed by many since its introduction last year. The smaller format (1.4 metres wide) of the Si2 will be ideal for installations where space constraints preclude the use of a large console, such as theatres, houses of worship and smaller tour sound systems. With all input and output connections and power supply on board, the Si2 can simply drop in where an existing analog console sits, utilising existing copper cable snakes and splitter systems. Soundcraft is offering the Si2 at a UK list price of £17,950. > soundcraftdigital.com

Compensation promised for channel 69 BEIRG underwhelmed as no firm alternative is specified and mic buyers deemed ineligible for funding OFCOM HAS PROPOSED to make alternative spectrum available UK-wide for wireless microphones, replacing the channels, which form part of the 800MHz band (61 to 69). “To release the whole 800MHz band, we need to clear channels 61, 62 and 69 of DTT and PMSE,” it said in its latest consultation document, Digital Dividend: clearing the 800MHz band. “We need to do this in a way that does not adversely affect the important services that would have been provided using this spectrum. This means finding other spectrum that is a suitable replacement for channels 61, 62 and 69. It also means making sure we plan the change from using one set of frequencies to another very carefully

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so that we avoid any significant adverse effect on the users of DTT (including viewers) and PMSE.” The success of the task will be of critical importance to the live entertainment industry (program making and special events), which relies on the stability of the radio mic market for survival and the radio equipment manufacturers. Ofcom also proposes that funding should be made available so that the existing and planned users of this spectrum do not have to bear extra costs as a result of these changes. This funding could come from new licensees in the 800 MHz band or the Government. Sennheiser’s Alan March, from the BEIRG steering committee, which is campaigning for a fair deal

for PMSE, wasn’t overly optimistic in light of the report. “It’s not the best of news. The situation seems to be ramping up quite quickly now,” he noted. “On the one hand the document stated quite categorically that by the end of 2012 or early 2013, we would have to be out of channel 69, but it didn’t give us a definite address to where we’re moving. “That in conjunction with the announcement that anyone who buys equipment or licences as of the date of the consultation will not be eligible for any funding, puts us in limbo land really.” Ofcom expects to publish a further statement in summer 2009, with a view to auctioning the UK's digital dividend in 2010.

www.audioprointernational.com


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> EVENT PREVIEW PROLIGHT + SOUND

April 1-4 Frankfurt, Germany

Prolight + Sound is the major area of growth in the combined event including Musikmesse

The main event in sound Prolight + Sound is by far the industry’s biggest trade fair, with some 100,000 visitors and thousands of exhibitors. Andrew Low takes a look at what the show has to offer…

P

rolight + Sound remains the undisputed leader of the trade show circuit. Over 100,000 people fly in from every corner of the globe to attend the show every year, with this year’s event is being held a bit later on April 1st to 4th at Messe Frankfurt due to the rolling Easter dates, always a week before. Prolight + Sound’s director, Jürgen Kupczik, comments on the pro audio sectors continued attendance at the show: “The sector has given a very warm welcome to the stronger focus on audio, lighting and stage technology, as well as to the independent exhibition area. The flood of enquiries from potential exhibitors shows that our links to the sector are very good and that we react proactively to its needs.” As such, a slew of new products will be introduced at this year’s event. Funktion One will be exhibiting its new RM18 triple concentric stage monitor in Hall 4.1 Stand F10. The RM18 is a radical departure from the standard 15-inch and compressiondriver configuration, which the company says delivers a significant performance advantage over conventional monitors. The all-new triple concentric arrangement comprises an ultra-fast 18-inch driver with 5-inch coil and Neodymium magnet and a special 58

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“The sector has given a very warm welcome to the stronger focus on audio, lighting and stage technology.” Jürgen Kupczik

inch driver with a built-in HF compression driver passively crossedover at 9kHz. The 700Hz crossover point and the natural materials used in the mid-device give an enhanced clarity and definition to the vocal range. The bass response of the 18inch driver also makes it well suited to use as a drum monitor. LD Systems will debut the LD Premium series on Adam Hall’s booth, (Hall 4.1, Stand D45). The series consists of 8-inch, 10-inch, 12-inch and 15-inch multi-purpose speakers, as well as the VA4 & VA8 line-array systems, subwoofers from 1x 15-inch, 2x 15-inch and up to 2x 18-inch complement the product line. Premier series speaker cabinets are all made of 18mm multiplex and coated with the DuraCoat LX coating, while the flyware and stacking components meet the highest demands in terms of safety. All customers are given a five-year guarantee. JTS will debut its new TG-10 wireless microphone system, designed for live touring applications, in Frankfurt. The TG-10 can be used for a wide variety of applications, such as in multi-language conferences, houses of worship, classrooms and OEM projects. A stationary transmitter, receiver and directional antenna are also available for installation projects.

TG-10 works in a UHF band with preset 16 channels with an operation distance of over 60 metres. It allows at least 12 systems to work simultaneously, while built-in lithium batteries allow over 14 hours of continuous use. A large charger with 36 slots is also available with the system SE Electronics will exhibit the eagerly awaited sE4400a and Rupert Neve RNR1 microphones this year, after months of anticipation. The sE4400a has four polar patterns: cardioid, hypercardioid, figure of eight and Omni, in addition to two bass cuts at 60Hz and 120Hz and two pads at 10 and 20dB. The mic’s chassis houses a twin diaphragm one-inch capsule and high-quality electronics and switches. The RNR1 active ribbon microphone is the result of collaboration between sE and Rupert Neve. “I have worked for some time on the designs for this new range of microphones – the concepts of which are actually already being implemented in our own Rupert Neve Designs 5088 Console,” says Neve. “The mic utilises Discrete Single-Sided Circuits, as well as my custom designed transformers. A special run of 20 limited edition chromed 4400a pieces will be available for interested visitors to snap up at the sE Electronics stand. > pls.messefrankfurt.com www.audioprointernational.com


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> NAMM EVENT REVIEW January 15-18 Anaheim Convention Center, California

A more subdued NAMM than usual, but lots of business being done

It ain’t all pro, A thinner audio region at this year’s NAMM meant there was as much audio activity among the MI players as there was in traditional audio sector on the show floor. Here’s a run down of what was hot at the show… fter several years building as a highly relevant pro audio show, NAMM’s winter 2009 event in Anaheim, California took on something of the appearance of treading water this year. The nowtraditional, audio-dominant ‘right hand side’ of the convention centre certainly appeared a little lighter after successive years of growth. However, there was still a lot of relevant stuff happening right across the show floor and with the smaller companies gathered in the downstairs treasure trove that is Hall E. This year the bigger MI companies stretched their tentacles further into the audio side, with companies such as Peavey introducing a new range of power amps, Roland further developing its use of Cakewalk Sonar in its product range, Steinway’s new versions of Cubase and Cubase Studio and Ableton’s integration of Cycling 74’s Max/MSP synth and MIDI platform. And Native Instruments has continued its own hardware/software developments, the latest being the Maschine drum machine-cum-groovebox. Across the show floor, bubbling under the shouting of the guitar,

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FACT FILE Venue: Anaheim Convention Center, California Date: January 15th to 18th Exhibitors: 1,505 Visitors: 85,799 (down 3%) Verdict: A quieter show than usual, particularly in the pro audio sectors, but by no means a quiet NAMM – has there ever been such a thing? The financial constraints many are feeling meant that those attending the show were there to do serious business. Buyers on the aisles were keeping schtum as to what their plans were, but exhibitors were all surprisingly upbeat, reporting good sales.

The IPR series of amps from Peavey made an outing at NAMM this year

drum and keyboard sorts, audio production and reinforcement was there for the visitor unconcerned with wearing out shoes and developing sore feet. This indicates something of a swerve towards recording rather than concerts for the world of pro audio, which sits comfortably with the gloomier news from the global market that suggests a more stay-at-home attitude for both businesses and consumers alike. There are certainly less concerts happening, which leaves more time for the activities of composing and recording. All of this, however, is purely as regards trends. Harman and EV, Shure and Sennheiser and all of the traditional audio reinforcement companies had new stuff for the offering at the show and what follows is a swift overview of gear that caught the eye.

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PEAVEY Peavey introduced the IPR series of ultra-lightweight, Class D power amps that increase output power, reliability and thermal efficiency. These twochannel amps have a resonant switchmode power supply, independent, 100Hz crossovers and a variable-speed fan housed in an aluminum chassis. Peavey’s proprietary DDT speaker protection with multi-point clip sampling is included in the protectioncircuitry suite, which also comprises DC, temp, signal and active safeguards. There are four standard models (the IPR 1600, 3000, 4400 and 6000), as well as another four that have built-in 32-bit, floating-point digital signal processing. These DSP models ship with eq presets that make eq treatments easy to perform, as well as delays, crossover and stereo/mono operation with lockable security settings. www.audioprointernational.com


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NAMM EVENT REVIEW <

There was plenty of new gear for audio-philes to see at the show

Joe >

ALLEN & HEATH The folks from Cornwall had some impressive new kit on show – not least the new Xone mixers (the 22 and the 02) – but it was the latest ‘trickle down’ from the iLive systems that aroused the most interest. The iLive-T series has, the company tells us, all the performance and power of the original iLive in a new lightweight and affordable package, and comprises the fixed I/O iDR-32 and iDR-48 Mix Racks, the iLive-T80 and iLive-T112 surface options with remote Cat5 connection. Each rack can be used with either control surface, and all models are compatible with the existing iLive units. Using iLive’s 64x32 Rack Extra DSP mix engine, both T series racks provide processing for 64 channels, 32 mixes and eight stereo FX processors.

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ALCONS AUDIO Alcons was on site with its latest ribbon technology, the RBN1801 – a new mid/high frequency transducer designed for high output and high fidelity sound reproduction. It features a radiation length of 18 inches and offers a power handling of 3kW (for 200ms – ten times the industry standard) and an efficiency of 108dB with 1W@1m. With a 90degree wave-guide, efficiency rises to 110dB, with a frequency operating

www.audioprointernational.com

“With our research going further into array-technology, the need existed for a larger singlediaphragm driver.” Philip de Haan, Alcons Audio

range of 1kHz to 20kHz. and a maximum SPL of 145dB. In the words of Philip de Haan, the head of Alcons Audio’s R&D: “With our research going further into array-technology, the need existed for a larger, single-diaphragm driver. Of course, a larger radiating surface can be made with multiple smaller drivers, but this drastically sacrifices the degree of frontal-radiation, which is one of the main criteria for line-source behaviour.”

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SOUNDCRAFT Much has already been spoken of Soundcraft’s new Si3 digital console – but it was still a real show stopper, with the stand heaving with bodies hoping to get a taster of the high input and bus count desk. A distinct advantage of the Si3 is the single chassis construction, which includes all input and output connections and the power supply, meaning it can drop into and replace an existing analog desk with no additional cabling required to install it.

This compact footprint desk can handle 64 mono inputs, four stereo inputs and has full connectivity for all 35 output busses (24 aux/group, eight matrix and left/right/centre mix buses), something you don’t normally find on digital consoles at this price level.

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LEXICON Staying with Harman, Lexicon introduced an upgrade to the software of the PCM96 stereo effects processor, which can function as a control-only insert or Firewire streaming audio plug-in inside Mac RTAS, VST and Audio Units software. The upgrade now enables surround and offers more presets, configuration options and inputs and outputs. The PCM96 Surround provides reverbs and effects, with a lot of flexibility. It functions as a plugin with a DAW, or as an outboard unit and provides a multitude of configuration options to choose from, without having to move any cables.The PCM96 Surround is available with either six XLR stereo AES inputs and outputs, or two DB25 six-channel analog I/O and 1 DB25 six-channel digital I/O.

Lexicon’s PCM96 stereo effects processor has recently been upgraded

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INTEGRATED SYSTEMS EUROPE EVENT REVIEW February 3rd to 5th RAI Convention Centre, Amsterdam

The show to beat ISE 2009 broke all its previous attendance and exhibitor records and, despite financial uncertainty, proved to be one of the strongest European trade shows. Audio Pro unpacked its snowshoes to trudge the showfloor aisles to see why everyone wants to be at ISE… he worst storm to hit the UK in 18 years left little hope for travellers wishing to attend the fist day of the Integrated Systems Europe (ISE) 2009 trade fair, held at the RAI Convention Centre in Amsterdam, The Netherlands from February 3rd to 5th. Those who were able to make the trip witnessed what the event organisers are calling “the most successful B2B event ever staged for Europe’s professional AV and electronic systems integration industry.” Visitor numbers fell just shy of 25,000 people (a 12 per cent increase on 2008) over the three-day event with 564 exhibitors on 22,000 square metres of net floor space. While the show did not prove to be a launching point for new products, many manufacturers had their latest kit on show for European debut. Lab.gruppen has recently released a slew of new products after acquiring the Lake brand and technology from Dolby at the beginning of the year. The most recent use of Lake’s know-

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FACT FILE Venue: RAI Convention Centre, Amsterdam Date: February 3 to 5 Exhibitors: 564 (up 16%) Visitors: 24,912 (up 12%) Verdict: ISE has been hailed as Europe’s leading AV systems integration show. It has expanded by record amounts in the past two years, attracting new vistors and exhibitors from across the globe. Time alone will tell if such exponential growth can be sustained in the coming years.

how is three new additions to its FP+ series amps and the LM 26 loudspeaker management processor. The three new FP series amps are the FP 14000 (2 x 7000 W @ 2 Ohms), FP 9000 W (2 x 4500 W @ 2 Ohms) and FP 4000 W (2 x 2000 W @ 2 Ohms). All of the amps feature its proprietary Intercooler system (which provides ‘all the power, all the time’), comprehensive warning and protection features and a Nomad Link network interface as standard. Lab.gruppen introduced the LM 26 loudspeaker management processor, a stand-alone digital loudspeaker processor based on Lake Processing technology. LM 26 is a full-featured two-in/six-out Lake processor in a 1U frame. It offers seamless compatibility with the PLM Series, as well as with all Dolby Lake Processors and earlier versions of the technology, including Mesa Quad and Contour. The eq and delay capabilities of the device will allow its use as a processor and line driver for self-powered and passive loudspeaker systems.

Lab.gruppen also exhibited its recent addition to the Powered Loudspeaker Management (PLM) series, the PLM 14000. The new amplifier builds on the success of the PLM 10000Q, while providing a two-channel platform optimised for highpower requirements. The new four-channel C 88:4 amp was also on display. Housed in a lightweight (12kg) 2U chassis, the C 88:44 supplies 8,800 Watts of total output. Alcons Audio reported a very successful show this year. The Netherlands-based manufacturer said it received great interest from new international clients and interested potentials. The highlights of Alcon’s booth were the new CR1 3-way ultracompact AV/digital cinema sound system and the LR7 micro pro-ribbon line array. The company’s Tom Back, comments: “We participated at ISE three years ago and the

GET YOUR MESSAGE OUT THERE


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ISE EVENT REVIEW <

attendance and importance of the show has grown significantly, especially for a sound system manufacturer like us. The response from our visitors was very positive, although most of them mentioned that they would like to see a more ‘focused’ show lay-out, with a concentrated pro-audio section to make their visit more efficient. Other than that, a great show with good meets and great leads.” Digico exhibited for the first year at ISE, making the European debut of the latest addition to its line of live digital mixing consoles, the SD8. It also displayed its flagship SD7 console. Both boards are similar in that they utilise Super FPGA technology and the Tiger Sharc FX engine. While they are equal in features and versatility, the SD8 integrates the innovative features from Digico’s D series in a more compact format. The SD8 features Stealth Digital Processing, which is based on the single Super FPGA combined with Analogue Devices’ Tiger SHARCS, resulting in the Tiger SHARC FX engine, giving the board a wide variety of onboard effects, reverbs, dynamics, output matrix. The new SD8 also provides 24 main channel faders and 12

assignable aux and touch sensitive master faders. Each bank of 12 faders can be instantly assigned as channels or masters, which allows all 36 main faders to control inputs. Additionally, any bank of 12 can be assigned to the touch screen for fine-tuning. In the midst of the exhibition halls was the Technology for Worship stage, which featured Innovason’s latest digital console, Eclipse. Known for its Sy80 and Sy48 digital consoles, Eclipse features the same preamps as its

“We participated at ISE three years ago and the attendance and importance of the show has grown significantly.” Tom Back – Alcons Audio predecessors, while adding a new design scheme, brand new features, onboard effects and a built-in multitrack recording system. Eclipse can provide up to 104 inputs into 48 busses. By combining five remote audio racks 320 inputs can be combined into one Eclipse desk. A smart panel located on the board’s surface offers an extra 48 channel strips, which brings the board’s fader offering up to 96. Other features of the board include a new Nova GUI and onboard effects. Additionally, Eclipse’s Ethersound compatibility provides 64 I/O that can extend up to 100 metres.

Tannoy exhibited its new QFlex range of digital beam-steering array loudspeakers. QFlex is a new series of self-powered, digitally steerable loudspeaker arrays using ‘beamsteering’ DSP technology. Tannoy also had the i9VP vandal-proof speaker system at the show and the new CVS4 Micro ultra-compact, shallow-back can ceiling speaker and Definition Install. Allen & Heath exhibited new additions to its iLive range, The Tseries. The series includes the iLiveT80 and iLive-T112 control surfaces and the I/O iDR-32 or IDR-48 MixRacks, which can be connected via a remote CAT5 cable, using the proprietary Audio Control Ethernet (ACE) link. It also displayed new digital I/O expanders for the iDR digital installation series. The new iDR D-in and iDR D-out units offer expansion options of up to 250m on CAT5 cable using AES/EBU. Other highlights of the show were Meyer Sound’s MM-4XP miniature loudspeaker , UPJunior VariO loudspeaker, HD-1 and X-10T studio monitors and the Matrix3 audio show control system; Yamaha’s SB168-ES stage box, DME (digital mix engine) and the PJP audio conferencing systems; Revolabs RF-Armor wireless Mics; Anchor Audio’s line of portable sound systems and speaker monitors; Neets Version 1, 2 and 3 amplifiers; Furman’s new Prestige series P-1400 ARE export voltage regulator and Imerge’s new MediaServer MS1 + XiVASafe hard disk media system. > iseurope.com

 Print Edition  Digital Edition  Mobile Edition  Online Leader

Call Darrell Carter on: 01992 535647


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> PRODUCT REVIEW SYMPHONIC ORCHESTRA

Simpler symphonic? East West/Quantum Leap’s Symphonic Orchestra ostensibly solves the common problem of requiring 40 musicians but having just one. Wes Maebe tunes in... MAEBE: “EWQLSO is the mother of all sample libraries”

(33gb) and Silver Complete 16-bit (11gb). As you can see there is a serious difference in storage requirements. If you want to run the big boys, East West suggests you store the library on a separate drive.

uestion: how do you fit an entire symphony orchestra into your control room? Answer: East West Quantum Leap’s Symphonic Orchestra Library. This is without a doubt the mother of all sample libraries and flattens the competition with an emphatic fortimissimo. EWQLSO has an amazing level of clarity, fidelity and reality that makes pre-production and demoing a doddle and if budgets are tight, this package is the closest you’re going to get to a real live orchestra.

Q

FEATURES The strings, woodwind, brass and percussion can sound warm and fat if you want them to, or you can easily dial in a thinner, silkier sound if required through Play, an advanced sample engine. Play can operate as a stand-alone unit or can be integrated in your DAW. Every instrument and section has been sampled with three different mic positions: close, stage (conductor’s position) and hall. 14

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It has an amazing level of clarity, fidelity and reality that makes preproduction and demoing a doddle. Wes Maebe

Play allows you to customise the sound of your orchestra. If the natural hall sound is not big enough for you, you can feast on East West’s reverb selection, which contains multiple impulse responses from East West’s studios, chambers and concert halls. So there’s no need to push your CPU to the limit for that extra reverb plugin. Play’s GUI is very straightforward and clutter-free. You can just dive in and get to work. The browser displays all your instruments, you can create favourite lists and the column viewer allows you to preview any instrument you’d like to use. EWQLSO offers 64-bit support, which enables you to load more voices and instruments (the only limitation being your system RAM) and you have the choice of 16 and 24-bit depths. Before we find out how EWQLSO performed in action, let’s have a look at the four available versions: Platinum Complete Plus 24-bit and 16-bit (194gb), Platinum Complete 24-bit (117gb), Gold Complete 16-bit

ON THE JOB The EWQLSO Platinum Complete 24-bit box arrived just in time to get seriously grilled. I had just finished recording a relaxation album of children’s lullabies played on the Hang. We recorded most of the instrumentation at Gearbox’s White Rooms. The artist decided to use some of the material for a ‘grown-up’ version, which meant we had to do a few things. I had to rehash and shorten the main melodies from the Hang, bring in some more didgeridoo and add guitars. This album had to be very different from the previous one, so I wanted a lush orchestral soundbed flowing underneath. EWQLSO requires iLok authorisation. It’s pretty cool, as this means you can take your symphonic orchestra with you anywhere you happen to be working at the time. After installing the software and samples (which took over six hours, so you need to plan for that), you launch the authorisation wizard, which guides you through authorising the packages tying that in with your iLok. Logic saw the Play software immediately, so I was able to get on with stuff straight away. I wrote some bass parts, put higher strings on top of those and followed the movements with a couple of flutes. I have to say, I was stunned. Since each instrument is chromatically sampled, you don’t get the weird effect of sampling an instrument at a certain pitch and then playing it lower or higher. Everything sounded so natural, there was no need for any extra processing. No eq, compression or reverb – it all glued together. All the credit needs to go to Keith Johnson, Doug Rogers and Nick Phoenix, the entire East West development team and all the players. This fabulous team has given us the most realistic and flexible symphonic package to date. www.audioprointernational.com


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> EVENT REVIEW MPG AWARDS

The hitmakers The inaugural MPG Awards set a new foundation for the British music industry. Audio Pro International reports…

he Music Producers’ Guild held its first ever awards ceremony on February 12th at the Café de Paris in London’s West End, with the great and the good from the UK’s music production industry all at hand to share in what everyone concerned hopes will be an annual and increasingly important event. Mike Howlett, the chairman of the MPG, said: “We hope that this event will become an integral part of the music industry calendar for many years to come. Our aim is to bring about greater awareness, both within the music industry and among the wider public, of the skills and talent involved in making great records. Audio professionals are at the very heart of the music industry and we should be acknowledged as key contributors.” It was an impressive beginning with names as close to household as producers could get attending as nominees, winners or to enjoy the occasion, including Marcus Dravs, James Towler and Calvin Harris, as well as chart-topping Duffy, who presented her producer, Bernard Butler, with the Producer of the Year award (coupled with the reinstated Brit award of the same name). Of note for many was the Joe Meek Award for Innovation, which went to Brian Eno (pictured bottom right), who also proved that music producers can be more than capable of public speaking, as he outlined exactly how recorded music has changed music itself, almost beyond recognition.

T

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“We hope this event will become an integral part of the music industry calendar.” Mike Howlett – MPG

MPG Award Winners Producer of The Year (sponsored by the BPI): Bernard Butler Nominees: Bernard Butler, Brian Eno, Steve Mac Recording Engineer of The Year (sponsored by Prism Sound): James Towler Nominees: Haydn Bendall, James Towler, Markus Dravs Best Mix Engineer (sponsored by Digidesign): Cenzo Townshend Nominees: Andy Bradfield, Cenzo Townsend, Tom Elmhirst

Studios): Elbow – Seldom Seen Kid Nominees: Coldplay – Viva La Vida, Duffy – Rockferry, Elbow – Seldom Seen Kid UK Single of The Year 2008 (sponsored by Discovering Arts): Elbow – One Day Like This Nominees: Duffy – Mercy, Elbow – One Day Like This, Radiohead – Nude The Joe Meek Award for Innovation In Production (sponsored by Music Producers Guild): Brian Eno Nominees: Brian Eno, Bjork, Mark Ronson

Best Mastering Engineer (sponsored by Sadie): Ray Staff Nominees: John Davis, Ray Staff, Tim Young

Best Re-mixer (sponsored by CMU): Calvin Harris Nominees: Calvin Harris, Dan Turner, Gareth Jones

Best International Producer of the Year (sponsored by RAK Studios): Danger Mouse (aka Brian Burton) Nominees: Danger Mouse, Mark Ronson, Robert John ‘Mutt’ Lange

Best Newcomer (sponsored by Deep Recording Studios): Paul Epworth Nominees: Dan Hulme, Paul Epworth, Steve Booker

Best Live Album of The Year 2008 (sponsored by Shure): Girls Aloud – Tangled Up Nominees: David Gilmour – Live In Gdansk, Girls Aloud – Tangled Up, Nephu Huzzband – Live In London UK Album of The Year (08) (sponsored by Cream Recording

Best Studio (sponsored by TL Audio): British Grove Studios Nominees: Abbey Road, AIR Lyndhurst, British Grove Studios Unsung Hero (sponsored by Alchemea): Andy McBride Nominees: Andy McBride, Crispin Murray, Xavier Stephenson Music Producers Guild Special Recognition Award: Chris Blair www.audioprointernational.com


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BEHIND THE BOARD WITH…

Peter Katis Peter Katis is the producer, engineer and mixer behind Connecticut-based Tarquin Studios… Which band/project are you currently working on?

I’m about to start the final month of tracking and mixing with a band called The Swell Season from Dublin, Ireland. You might know them better as the people from the movie Once. What audio console are you utilising? And how many channels?

I have a 56 input Neotek Elite console, but for some time it’s only been used for basic monitoring and nothing else. I have dozens of flavours of outboard preamps, eqs and compressors, as well as a few analog summing mixers that I prefer to the console. Do you utilise any outboard effects/eq?

I’ll just throw out some of my favourite signal paths of late: Telefunken V76 pre, Klein & Hummel UE100 EQ, Gates STAlevel compressor (vintage tube), Telefunken V276 pre, Neumann PEV EQ, ADR Compex Limiter (vintage solid state), Thermionic Culture Earlybird pre, The Pullet EQ, The Phoenix compressor (Modern tube) and Chandler TG Channel pre, Germanium Tone Control, TG1 compressor (Modern solid state). I also still try to stick to analog-only effects, including an old EMT140 plate reverb, an AKG BX10 spring reverb, a Roland Space Echo, Chorus Echo and a Maestro Echoplex.

Favourite console?

As I said, I track exclusively through outboard pres and mix into an analog summing mixer, so an old school, large format console is no longer a vital component in my recording process. I’ve just started using a new summing mixer called The Fat Bustard by Thermionic Culture. The differences in high end summing mixes are usually quite subtle, but this thing just sounds huge. Favourite PA system (or monitors)?

I have a number of studio monitors I like, including Yamaha NS10s, ProAc Studio 100s, Dynaudio Acoustic M3s, but I work on B&W 805S nearfields about 90 per cent of the time. Best toy you take on tour (can be audio… can be other)?

I don’t tour much these days, but when I travel to record in other places, I don’t like to work without at least one Chandler TG1 compressor in the room. What’s been your career highlight?

Watching bands that I work with grow from young and scrappy to confident and accomplished, bands like The National, Interpol and more recently a Scottish group called Frightened Rabbit. Finally, if you weren't working now, you'd be..?

Playing hockey. > tarquinrecords.com

“I’ve just started using a new summing mixer called The Fat Bustard. This thing just sounds huge.” Peter Katis - Tarquin Studios

www.audioprointernational.com

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> SECTOR SPOTLIGHT POWER AMPS

POWER STA > OHM DSP-A3 • 180W per ch @ 4 Ohms • DSP ethernet contoller • 1.3kg

> QSC POWERLIGHT 3 SERIES •PL380: 4000W @ 2 Ohms •85 % plug to plug efficieney •185V peak output

> VOID ACOUSTICS INFINITE X •X6: 1200W per ch @ 2 Ohms •Switch mode power supplies •MOSFET output stages

> MARTIN AUDIO MA SERIES •MA12K: 6000W @ 2 Ohms •95 % efficiency •Pulse Width Modulation

In the fifth decade since Crown introduced the DC-300, we’re now seeing amps capable of drawing so much power that they’re potentially limited by the mains cables fitted to them. Audio Pro International thought it was time to take a fresh look at this restless market… OHM DSP-A3 “A WELL-MANNERED amp should accept an input, amplify it, drive it into the connected load without any extra noises, distortion or speaker threatening DC failures and definitely no expensive vacations to the repair shop,” notes Ohm’s Clive Kinton. “User error must be met with quiet protection, not with system-destroying violence. And it has to sound good.” The philosophy that Ohm applied to its solid analog CFU series of amps has now been carried over to its brand new digital model, the DSP-A3 – shipping in production quantities as you read. With an output of 1,800 Watts per channel at four Ohms, CFU combines a Class H output with a switch mode power supply and a DSP Ethernet controller. As a result, it weighs only 13kgs and is suited for touring systems. It features a 48/96 DA converter and a DSP engine that affords system filtering, crossover, up to two seconds of delay, eq and limiting functions. Configuring, monitoring and controlling can be done locally or by use of full Ethernet communications. Performance can be monitored and settings changed via a Windows based computer over a local area network or from the internet. The user interface shows the DSP functionality identically to an analog unit with one-toone portraits of every control. A two-unit patch panel is also available to configure mains, outputs and DSP LAN. Mains is supplied via a male C32 socket and distributed to four Powercon outlets via an autoswitching sequencer. QSC POWERLIGHT 3 SERIES PENNED AS the ‘ultimate analog amplifier’, QSC’s Powerlight 3 series has been designed for demanding live audio professionals in either the fixed install or touring market, and is specifically targeted at those who provide the technical foundation for top-grossing concert performers. The flagship amp, the Class D, 8,000-Watt PL380 more than doubles the output power and thermal capacity of QSC’s previous 2RU designs, yet the company insists that it looks and sounds linear, whether on the bench or driving sound systems. Reactive ‘back EMF’ from the speaker is recycled to the power supply, and the amp achieves a plug-to-plug efficiency of 85 per cent and a response time of less than five nanoseconds.

Peak output can reach 185V and the QSC assures concert pros that its amp won’t lose efficiency when driving reactive loads. All this helped the unit to scoop the TEC Award in the Amplifier Technology category at AES last year.

Some loudspeaker companies use amplifiers that aren’t manufactured by them and actually let down the performance of the whole system. Alex Skan (API) – Void Acoustics

VOID ACOUSTICS INFINITE X ONE OF THREE X-rated debuts at PLASA 08, Void’s Infinite X range of two-channel power amplifiers has now been fully tested and is in full-scale volume production. The first three models in the range – the X4 (2 x 600W into 4 Ohms), X5 (2 x 800W into 4 Ohms) and X6 (2 x 1200W into 4 Ohms) – feature highefficiency switch-mode power supplies that deliver up to 8kVA, and newly-developed Mosfet output stages to maximise audio fidelity and reliability. All models will deliver increased power output into a two-Ohm load. Even at the production stage, the amps are already benefiting from the expertise of the renowned audio designer, Andy Hunt, and B&W’s Aura brand, who joined the Void design team, led by Rog Mogale, in January. Andy Hunt’s design influence is soon to be seen in the Infinite X7 and X8 two-channel amplifiers (in beta testing at the time of going to press) and subsequent four-channel designs, the Infinite 5X4 and 6X4. Hunt’s design philosophy is to create amps that optimise power output and audio performance, while ensuring the concepts are production engineered for swift and economical manufacture; of critical importance to Void, which integrates the entire production process, from conceptual design to volume manufacturing at its HQ in Dorset. Void is the only amp builder in the industry that does this and it is a business model that director Alex Skan can aptly demonstrate the merits of in terms of both profitability and performance of finished products. “As we’ve progressed more as a business, we’ve realised that you’ve got to go for the complete package and the amplifier side is the key to this,” explains Skan. “Some loudspeaker manufacturers use amplifiers that aren’t manufactured by them and actually let down the performance of the whole system. So this really gives us an edge in being able to offer a full package to a customer and to retain that control.” www.audioprointernational.com


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POWER AMPS SECTOR SPOTLIGHT <

ATIONS > MC2 E90 •8000W @ 2 Ohms •Resonant power supply •84% plug to plug efficiency

MARTIN AUDIO MA SERIES POWERING MARTIN Audio’s proprietary loudspeaker systems, such as the W8L Longbow line array, the company’s quickly expanding MA series of amps include the MA12K and MA9.6K and the MA5.2K. The series utilises the Pulse Width Modulation principal in combination with a high efficiency two-stage switching power supply for Class D operation at up to 95 per cent efficiency. Around 55 of the new amplifiers make up the bulk of the engine room’s racks at Matter, the three-floor, 2,600 capacity nightclub at the O2 arena complex. In Room one, six MA4.2s drive the W8L Longbow and downfill line array, with two MA12K driving the subs. Three MA6.8Qs are assigned to Martin Audio’s Blackline H3H enclosures and an MA2.8s runs the W8LM combo of MA2.8s, an MA4.8Q and an MA6.8Q drive LE400C and LE1200 monitors. MC2 E90 “THERE ARE many loudspeakers that are much better powered by a muscle amp,” says MC2’s Duncan Hamilton, designer of the E90 amp. “Some of these loudspeakers need huge currents to get them moving and keep them under control, which is a perfect example of why having amplifiers that can deliver such large voltage swings and current in an instant is good for them.” As those present will attest, the E90 certainly kept the mighty Infrabass 218s under control in Funktion One’s PLASA demo room this year, where it landed with a 16k-sized crater. The two-channel, Class D amp delivers an enormous 8,000 Watts RMS per channel into two Ohms or 4,500 into four. “I’ve never experienced so much power so clean,” notes Funktion-One’s Tony Andrews. “It marks a sort of departure for MC2 in that it’s different to the rest of the E series. The influence of a young chap [Hamilton] we pointed at XTA a few years ago has resulted in a more advanced design, which is actually simpler.

> CROWN I-TECH HD •T1200: 4500W @ 4 Ohms •OmniDrive HSD •Studio quality processing

I’ve never experienced so much power so clean

Funktion One’s Tony Andrews on the MC2 E90

Cream Liverpool: Masses of clubbers line up to hear the club’s big stacks, powered by FFA’s 10,000

> LAB.GRUPPEN PLM SERIES •PLM 14000:7000 per ch into 2 Ohms •Lake Processing technology •Patented Intercoolers

“This has made it one of the most transparent-sounding amps I’ve ever heard. This, on top of all that power makes it a bloody good product. We’ve had to beef up the 21s since it appeared in terms of the mechanics. It’s not about being able to turn your speaker into an electric fire – it’s more about its ability to follow a waveform.” In one of their first UK outings, the amps hit the road late last year for The Pigeon Detectives’ winter tour, powering WE Audio's 24-stack Turbosound Aspect TA-890 and TSW-218 system in venues such as Belfast City Hall. CROWN I-TECH HD BOLDLY STATING that it ‘dramatically resets expectations of what a professional-grade touring amplifier should deliver in terms of performance and advances every criteria by which an amplifier is judged’, Crown unveiled the I-Tech HD series amplifier in what was possibly one the most high profile NAMM pro audio debuts this year. Topping the bill is the I-T12000 HD, which puts out 4,500 Watts at four Ohms. I-Tech HD is the result of a massive engineering R&D drive, along with Crown’s 60 years of experience and user input from tour sound leaders. The Class-I amplifier sports a brand new user-inspired DSP engine, OmniDriveHD, co-developed by Harman sister company BSS, with linear phase FIR filters that provide greatly improved midrange clarity and off-axis response. LevelMax limiter technology links the previously independent peak, thermal and RMS limiters, enabling more effective, elegant protection of connected speakers while maximising SPLs. I-Tech HDs are now set to go out on tour with Audio Analysts for the Bruce Springsteen tour in April. In the meantime, Southern California-based Sound Image, which handles big-ticket acts such as Eric Clapton, recently placed an order for over 800 units, totalling 10 million Watts. “There were a lot of features that stand out in this new amplifier that are going to help us be more efficient. The new built-in DSP is a major advantage for eq and tuning,” states Sound Image president, Dave Shadoan.


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> SECTOR SPOTLIGHT POWER AMPS BMW Pit Lane Park: Q Power amps power the pit’s exstensive sound system

> FULL FAT AUDIO FFA 10,000 •5000W @ 2 Ohms •Dual mono architecture •Rigid enclosures

> CAMCO Q POWER •2500W @ 4 Ohms (Max RMS) •SMPS Technology •4 channel amps

LAB.GRUPPEN PLM SERIES THE PLM SERIES combines Lab.gruppen amplification with its networked digital signal distribution, drive processing, power amplification, load verification and performance monitoring from a single piece of hardware. LG’s established current road-proven model is the 2,300Watt into four Ohms PLM 10000Q, although the company has recently announced the PLM 14000, optimised for highpower requirements based on two-channel operation. The new powerhouse delivers a thumping 7,000 Watts per channel into two ohms or 4,350 into four. New circuitry in the 14000 provides current-carrying capabilities and the Regulated Switch Mode power supply (R.SMPS) has been upgraded to include full power during long low-frequency bursts. It also has patented intercoolers, a full complement of protection features and a Power Average Limiter (PAL) to prevent tripping of mains breakers. While reports of the unit’s first applications are still pending, the 10,000 is already a seasoned amp and a firm favourite among a number of top touring and installation firms, such as MediaTech, a Lab.gruppen distributor, which employed the devices in an upgrade of the Nitra’s Andrej Bagar Theatre, one of the biggest in Slovakia. MediaTech opted for an Adamson SpekTrix compact line array for the main system, driven by three PLM 10000Qs. FULL FAT AUDIO FFA 10000 FFA’S CLASS D bass application power amps were designed for a customer who required a two-Ohm drive stereo amp that could be used for extended periods of time, at full power and in above average temperatures. The amps are designed and manufactured in the UK, housed in a thick, ridged enclosure to ensure components are protected from vibration and make them ideal for touring and temporary installs. The company’s flagship amplifier is the FFA-10000, rated at 5,000W into two Ohm loads, 3,000W into four or 1,500W into eight. The amp’s design negates the need for power reductions to protect itself when driven to its full potential at two-Ohm loads. FFA uses a dual mono amplifier architecture, which, although more costly to manufacture, ensures the ability to deliver very high power and superb bass performance. Dual redundancy comes within the design specification. Recent installations of the amp include The Egg in London and Cream in Liverpool. Cream’s engineer Andy Kayll notes the improvement in the club’s sound after he and FFA founder Dave Millard fitted the new amps: “The

> ELECTRO-VOICE Q SERIES •Q1212: 1800 @ 2 Ohms •Class H layout •Switchable LPN filters

> YAMAHA TXN SERIES •TX6n: 2x3000W @ 4 ohms •Yamaha DSP •Stable 2-ohm drive capability

difference was startling, the bass was tighter and fuller and the amps were just ticking over. A couple of hours with Smaart [EAW’s sound system measurement software] to rough it in and ears to perfect it and the place was absolutely rocking.”

We placed an order for over 800 ICrown ITech HD units, totalling 10 million Watts. Dave ShadonSound Image

YAMAHA TXN SERIES YAMAHA’S NEW TXn Series amplifiers will be its most powerful offering to date. The company states the TXn Series bring together several industry-leading Yamaha technologies for the ultimate in power, processing and networking. The three new amps in the line include the TX4n (2x 1,900W into 4 Ohms), TX5n (2x 2,300W into 4 Ohms) and TX6n (2x 3,000W into 4 Ohms). The amps feature versatile I/O using an MY card slot, Yamaha DSP power with advanced limiter and protection functions and speaker processing, input signal redundancy using analog XLR inputs and advanced remote control/monitoring capabilities with the software. The stable two-ohm drive capability of the TXn Series makes it ideal for use with line array systems. ELECTRO-VOICE Q SERIES EV INTRODUCED the new Q series amps at NAMM 2009 with four models designed for mobile audio applications. Based on Class H layout for maximum efficiency and reduced weight in a 2U box, the amp family features additional switchable low pass notch (LPN) filters, providing extra fundament and kick, as well as protective low-cut when driving compact 12-inch or 15-inch full-range speaker cabinets without subwoofers. Q Series is launching with four models, including the flagship, Q1212 (1,200 Watts per channel into four Ohms, or 1,800 into two), which offers the horsepower to challenge its Precision series predecessor, the P3000. It provides the same power from a 2U case, making it ideal for a subwoofer or high-power top-drive. CAMCO Q POWER CAMCO’S Q POWER amps are equally at home in a touring PA system as they are in a fixed installation. The Q- Power 6 and Q- Power 10 are 19-inch 2RU four-channel amps using class D and class H technology, respectively featuring Camco’s proprietary dual-voltage SMPS with automatic voltage selection for 120V/230V operation. Rated at 2,500W (Q-Power 10) and 1,500W (Q-Power 6) peak power RMS output at four Ohms, Q-Power 10 offers 625W per channel for 100 Volt line operation and the QPower 6 will deliver 950W for 70 Volt line operation.


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When going digital is this You know what a channel strip looks like. So does the Si. In Channel Mode, there’s a rotary encoder for every function. Then switch to Global mode and all your Pans, Input Gains, etc. are right there in a row.

Distributed Display Technology. Clearly a better idea. Doesn’t it make sense to have your visual feedback right where you’re working? That’s why we gave Si consoles a series of super-bright, hi-res OLEDs instead of a single, central screen.

In no time, it’s showtime. With an Si console, how you work is up to you. Put your VCA groups wherever you want them – Soundcraft’s revolutionary FaderGlow™ will always remind you what mode you’re in.

Soundcraft T: +44 (0)1707 665000 E: marketing@soundcraft.com Soundcraft US T: 888-251-8352 E: soundcraft-USA@harman.com

www.soundcraftdigital.com


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>> GENERAL MOTORS PLACE, VANCOUVER General Motors Place in Vancouver, BC, home to NHL’s Vancouver Canucks, can host up to 16,900 visitors for matches and events. The stadium’s chief audio technician, John Riley, recently modified its sound system with a $1.7 million upgrade that includes additional L-Acoustics line arrays elements, an Optocore fibre optic digital audio network and a Soundcraft Vi6 console. The new system was designed by Vaino Gennaro, director of live sound products for Sennheiser Canada, in conjunction with Vancouver-based Rocky Mountain Production Services. The stadium now has six dVDOSC line-source arrays covering all audience and press levels, which eliminates the need for delay speakers. Two dV-Subs per array are also in place for mid-bass reinforcement, with SB28s added for sub-bass coverage. The patented DOSC waveguide technology featured in the dV-DOSC helped reinforce accurate coverage. Gennaro explains: “DOSC waveguide technology creates a precision cylindrical wave front that can be focused accurately above the glass to target just the seating areas. Since the main focus of the energy is above the boards, we can provide less interference for the players, broadcast engineers and an enhanced experience for the live spectator. All rigging parts and system components were included to minimising fabrication and labour costs.” RMPS president Fred Michael furthered Gennaro’s concept by adding more dV-DOSC cabinets. The new system features a total of six >>

> INSTALLATIONS STADIUM SOUND

Coliseum cornerstones The history of stadiums is rooted in victory as much as it is in defeat. Some arenas have withstood both world wars and host today’s biggest sporting events and concerts. Andrew Low unravels the schematics behind today’s modern stadia’s sound systems… www.audioprointernational.com

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> INSTALLATIONS STADIUM SOUND

The LA Coliseum has hosted two Olympics

LOS ANGELES COLISEUM The Los Angeles Coliseum is one of the oldest and largest stadiums in the US. It holds many historic titles, as it is the only stadium in the world to host two Olympic Games, in 1932 and 1984. It is also the only stadium to host both the Superbowl and the World Series. To coincide with the opening of the USC Trojan’s 2008 football season, the Coliseum was fitted with a brand new Meyer Sound system by McCune Sound. The new system features 12 of the Meyer’s new SB-3F sound field synthesis loudspeakers with two hangs of ten Milo line array loudspeakers on either side of the scoreboard.

A dozen 700-HP subwoofers were also installed to handle the LF, with six subwoofers in each of the two main PA enclosures. The subwoofers are arranged in each enclosure in a formation designed to create a cardioid dispersion pattern with even low frequency coverage throughout the stadium. Several MSL-4 and UPA-2P loudspeakers cover side and downfill duties, respectively. The 92,000-seat venue is a challenging acoustic environment due to its size and the distance between the sound source and its farthest seats. The SB-3F was chosen for its ability to project sound at a phenomenal distance without any loss in intelligibility. > meyersound.com

<< identical line arrays made up of 13 dV-DOSC cabinets,

augmented by two dV-SUB subwoofers. The entire sound system at GM Place is connected and managed by a dual redundant Optocore fiber optic digital audio network, which allows all the audio in the stadium to be accessed universally. “The fiber ring travels some 200 degrees around level Zero at the bottom floor of the building and up a riser to the 500 level where it rings around the other side of the rink,” says Riley. “From there, it runs up to the 600 level where the clock and amplifiers are located. It then returns to the 500 level and goes the other way in the tray, and then down a different riser back to the ground where it hooks back up to the beginning. Theoretically 512 channels of audio are available at every location where there is an Optocore interface box.” Riley’s decision to use the Optocore network over Ethersound or CobraNet was based partially on its extremely low latency. “We were getting into milliseconds of latency. Then I went to InfoComm in June and saw Optocore, and the light went on for me because not only did it do everything on fiber, on a single pair, but it offered us latency way down in the microseconds,” he says. The Soundcraft console can also be used in any of three locations throughout the stadium, with a fibre connection available for the console at a bulkhead in each place. The Optocore network also offers users internet access and all system operating software at each of the three locations. “From the mix position, the operator can manage the Optocore network and operate the console, the wireless microphones up on the 600 level, and the Riedel intercom system software, executing commands on that software via the Optocore network. So this is a big, unique plus for the Optocore installation,” Michael notes. > l-acoustics.com, optocore.com, soundcraft.com 26

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OLYMPIC STADIUM, BERLIN The Olympic Stadium in Berlin is now known as the site of the 2006 FIFA World Cup final, an event that absolved the venue from its questionable history. Built for the 1916 Summer Olympics, which were subsequently cancelled, then rebuilt for the infamous 1936 games, the stadium was one of the only buildings in the city to survive WWII, escaping with just a few gunshot pockmarks. To prepare for the World Cup the stadium owners upgraded the system to accurately broadcast audio to its 74,282 seats. The stadium is now fully equipped with EV and Dynacord paging and PA systems. The upgrade also had to comply with the European EN608849 standard for use of sound systems in emergency situations. Telex Communications states that it is the only major pro audio company in the world with gear to meet EN608849. As such, the new Olympic Stadium utilises a Dynacord ProMatrix life safety system, which features a whopping 171 XLC127+ line array boxes, and 38 P1200RL, 43 P3000RL and two P900RT Electrovoice remote-control amplifiers running IRIS-Net software. IRIS-Net enables the PA systems to be handled from a central location. > electrovoice.com

We felt the three-way system would be the preferred option for this stadium. The Martin Audio rig performed. Eric Rutten - TM Audio

GROLSCH VESTE STADION, HOLLAND Grolsch Veste Stadion in Enschede is home to the Dutch premier league club FC Twente. The 24,000-seat stadium has recently been fitted with a new main stand roof and Dutch AV specialists, Hecla, designed a new technical infrastructure for Grolsch. Over 20 clusters of Martin Audio’s AM906 extended-range mid-highs, and AS118 hybrid bass horn/reflex subs provide sound for the stadium ground. The speakers are arranged in groups of two enclosures (in the high stand), three (in the corners) and single (in the low stand). Martin’s AQ12 full-range speakers cover other areas, such as the restaurant, while the smaller AQ5s provide the public address in the outer-ring concourse. TM Audio is well known for its stadium installations and relationship with Martin Audio – it fitted out Ajax Arena in Amsterdam with an all-Martin line array system. Martin’s AM series was chosen for the Grolsch arena after a demo against another system. The AM proved to be a truly high power system, with an SPL of 110 dB, continuous 116 dB peak at 15 metres – and a uniform 90-degree x 60-degree coverage pattern. TM’s product and application specialist, Eric Rutten, comments: “We felt the three-way system would be the preferred option for this stadium and as a result there was no comparison between the two systems. The Martin rig threw 10dB more over the 23-metre distance from the pitch to the top of the tribunes.” > martin-audio.com www.audioprointernational.com


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STADIUM SOUND INSTALLATIONS < THE STADE DE LA ROUTE DE LORIENT, FRANCE France’s Stade de la Route de Lorient, built in 1912, escaped destruction during both world wars. The stadium has had many upgrades over the years and is now a 31,000-capacity state-ofthe-art venue owned by French billionaire François Pinault. Audiolite of France recently installed an Adamson sound system as the permanent solution for the football stadium. The Adamson setup features 42 Metrix W enclosures. Audiolite and DV2 carried out the installation design. The companies used three clusters of six Adamson Metrix Ws in the North bleachers and four clusters of six Adamson Metrix Ws in the Presidential bleachers. Due to the stadium’s close proximity to the ocean and unusual coverage areas, finding the right system was a challenge. System designer Sylvain Turpin adds: “We needed to find one that would fix the problems of the old speaker system, which had bad coverage and frequency response, as well as insufficient SPL for this specific venue. The Adamson ND-8LM 16 Ohm drivers helped us gain considerable savings due to less cabling and amplifying. We put six Metrix W LF & HFs on two channels of a Lab.gruppen C68:4.” > adamsonproaudio.com

STADIUMMK, MILTON KEYNES The controversial transmogrification of Wimbledon FC into the MK Dons football team sparked the construction of a stadium in Milton Keynes. Called Stadiummk, the venue functions a stadium, arena and a hotel complex. Veteran music producer and studio owner, Pete Winkelman, led the development of the stadium’s sound system. Winkelman paid specific attention to the acoustics and audio quality of the stadium to ensure that it would accurately support the various events that take place in the multi-purpose venue. Winkelman consulted with Metallica’s live sound engineer ‘Big Mick’ Hughes to find a suitable mixing console that would best support the Meyer Sound/ BSS PA system in the stadium. Hughes recommended the Yamaha LS9-16 because of its sound quality and versatility. The LS9’s ability to store and recall settings was perfectly suited for fast changeovers. The board was put to the test for the first time during the Alan Ball Memorial Cup match played between a celebrity-strewn England XI and a Rest Of The World XI. The LS9 console mixed live feeds from an OB truck and television coverage being relayed to the stadium while simultaneously broadcast on air. It was also used for pre-recorded music and live announcements throughout the event inside the stadium.

Stadiummk uses the Yamaha LS9-15 console...

We had to find a system that would fix the problems of the old one. The Adamson ND8LM helped us gain considerable savings.

> yamahacommercialaudio.com

Sylvain Turpin system designer

Professional Optical Fibre Network System for Fixed Installation, Live Sound and Broadcast EW! DD2FE N

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• Dedicated Studer/ Soundcraft mode

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• Transport up to 512 audio channels simultaneous with data and video

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• All professional audio standards, composite video, DMX, Ethernet, RS485, MIDI

PARAGON ARENA, GERMANY The 15,000 visitors who support the SC Padervborn football team at Germany’s Paragon Arena now hear the game’s music and announcements courtesy of Nexo’s PS series. Local sound company Sound Linear chose the Nexo systems for Paragon due to its cost-to-performance ratio, high-quality audio reinforcement and compliance with prevailing standards for evacuation systems. Sound Linear’s Karl-Heinz Hogrefe worked with Camco engineers to determine the best configuration of numerous loudspeaker cabinets from Nexo’s PS Series. The team decided to mount in 40 Nexo PS15s on the roof girders of the stadium, with eight Alpha-EM top boxes flown beside them, facing the field. The VIP area of the arena now has 18 PS8 compact cabinets, while an additional mobile PS10 PA system has been installed for press conferences. An Ethersound ES-100 network is in place for signal distribution at the stadium, which consists of an eight-channel analog EtherSound converter, Auvitran AVM500-ES digital matrix and Camco Tecton amps with EtherSound inputs. > nexo-sa.com, camcoaudio.com

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ANDREW NISSLEY INTERVIEW <<

Pennsylvania synth rock band Innerpartysystem has recently returned to the US after a lightning UK tour. Rob Hughes caught up with FOH engineer and ‘fifth band member’ Andrew Nissley after the final show in London… guess what makes my job most interesting is that I’m ‘in the band, but in the back’, as [drummer] Jared once put it. When I’m close enough to the stage I’ll either sing all the harmonies or double what Patrick is singing to make the vocals thicker. I think playing huge festivals is cool, but the delay from stage to front of house basically makes it impossible for me to sing backup vocals, which bums me out a little. I think if we played a large tour, I’d ask for a pair of whatever PA cabinets they were using for the house system and just mix onstage. I’d probably wind up looking a lot like a DJ, but with a console in front of me instead of turntables. Most people who come see us say that the live show has more energy than the album. I think a lot of it stems from having live drums all the time, whereas the majority of the album is sequenced. We do use backing tracks live from a laptop too, like a lot of bands though. I spend a lot of time with our practice PA and studio monitors mixing them in Ableton, so when it comes to show time I just turn them up and they sound like I want them to, which is a huge bonus about being the ‘fifth band member’. We still split the tracks up as it gives you a lot more options when you mix in a different room every day, especially for the low end. Due to the heavy dance nature of some of the songs, I’m consistently trying to find ways to get more and more bass from wherever I can, to make the shows feel more like being in a club, but sometimes the drum samples make everything way too ‘boomy’, so it’s better to use more of the live drums and less of the tracks. Since it’s not all lumped into one stereo track, I can dump the low end and not lose the bass sounds.

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Not all consoles are ideal, but I owe it to the people who are there to do the best I can with what I get. Andrew Nissley

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We use many electronic instruments, so almost everything on stage is run direct. If I could put a DI box on a snare drum, I probably would. We used to separate all the keyboards, but listening to Jesse’s synths in the studio made me realise that one stereo feed of three tracks was better than a mono feed of each one. Mixing with them in stereo for the first time made it sound like a whole new band. I have a bit less control over specific volumes at FOH, but overall it benefits the sound of the whole band to do it that way. The one thing I can’t control at the moment is the console, as we have to use whatever is present at the venue. This show was the first time I’ve ever used the Digidesign Venue console. The eq section is upside-down from the smaller Yamaha digital boards that are much more common in the size of venues we play in and I kept grabbing the wrong knobs. I don’t really mind switching consoles day to day though. While there are certainly people who listen very carefully and then go on forums on the internet and bitch about how 180hz was three dB too loud in the kick drum, most people want to have a drink, hear the songs and have a great time. Not all consoles are ideal, but I owe it to the people who are there to do the best I can with what I get, because without them, I’d probably be in a cubicle somewhere testing software. As for my favourites, Midas Heritage if it’s analog, and of the digital boards, I actually like the little Yamaha LS9 a lot. The Soundcraft VI6 rules, it’s got a great interface, but I don’t know if I’d tour with it – it’s enormous and I like the fact that something as tiny as the LS9 does everything I really need. Plus it has a great spot for my Korg Kaoss Pad 3. www.audioprointernational.com


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ANDREW NISSLEY INTERVIEW <<

Nissley finds his way around the Digidesign Venue console for the first time at the last UK show

Innerpartysystem gets a standing ovation in London

Where processing is concerned, I normally only use eq for drums and vocals. Most of the effects I use are on vocals too, primarily reverb and stereo pitch shift to make them a little wider. The Kaoss Pad is constantly doing something to them; ping pong delay most of the time and looping sung phrases at other times. Between vocals I often make synth sounds with it. When I don’t have a digital board I use the FMR Audio RNLA (Really Nice Levelling Amp) on Patrick’s vocals. It works really well with his voice. Vocals are definitely the hardest thing to get sounding exactly right; they’re the anchor to the songs, since despite all the synths and circuit bent noises we use, the songs are still more or less pop songs and the vocals need to be intelligible. Thankfully no glitches have ruined any of the shows, even though so many things have broken – our guitar processor blew up, our laptop soundcard died (carrying a spare around for a year wasn’t a mistake after all) and even my Kaoss Pad got fried. We think one of our UK to US power converters was bad, but fortunately we were able to use Middle Class Rut’s guitar gear and still play all the shows. The Milton Keynes Bowl show was probably my favourite date on the tour for both the venue and the sound system; which is a nod to Britannia Row, because every time I’ve mixed on one of their systems in England it’s sounded amazing. There’s definitely a line I have to draw, knowing that not every show can be as perfect as this, but I think living up to the bar I set for myself is the hardest part. Most people would probably call this masochistic; if there’s any one person who’s going to be pissed about that 180hz in the kick drum it’s going to be me and if it’s one of those days I’ll probably leave front of house cursing and saying it sounded bad even though no one else thought so. www.audioprointernational.com

Our kid’s electric… Andrew Nissley is an integral part of Innerpartysystem; he mixes tracks, sings vocals and looks after the lighting show

I made my own gear for the show – I built LED towers out of home depot materials. Andrew Nissley

>

ANDREW NISSLEY was a live sound engineer for six years before he went to school in Los Angeles to learn more about the craft he had acquired on the job. During his year in LA, his brother Patrick sought him out for technical advice for the new band and just 24 hours after arriving home Andrew was mixing Innerpartysystem’s fourth show at a local club. He then mixed two tracks for the band’s first album, The Download EP, and from then on, became the fifth band member. Nissley is also a key part of the band’s creative engine. As well as mixing the act on stage, he can be found singing harmonies, dropping loops, effects and taking care of the group’s renowned lighting show, for which he fashioned his own gear: “While the band recorded the album, I went into my Dad’s workshop and built LED light towers out of home depot materials and par can retrofit kits, wired up everything up and sat in our practice space inhaling stage fog for a week and programming moving light cues and LED wall patterns.”

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> LIVE SOUND VMB LIFTS

A cut above the rest VMB’s Towerlift systems are quickly becoming an industry standard for hanging small to medium-sized line arrays at outdoor concerts and events. Andrew Low talks to the company about these unique aids for the gigging rigger…

MB of Valencia, Spain has gained a reputation for its innovative loudspeaker technology, one that earned it a spot at 2008’s Glastonbury Park Stage. In addition to developing world-firsts in the loudspeaker market, VMB is also responsible for the development of the first and only frontloading lift specifically designed for hanging line arrays. The company has been manufacturing towerlifts since the early 1980s and now offers 14 models of varying sizes. The latest additions to the Towerlift line are the TL-A240 and TL-A320, which were debuted at last year’s Pro Light + Sound show in Frankfurt. Rental companies have already found the lifts to be an integral part of their road gear for small to medium-sized outdoor events, as they can fly up to eight line array boxes (300 to 320 kg) in only 20 minutes.

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HERITAGE Ben Sinclair, VMB’s export manager, comments: “We have been manufacturing front loading lifts for a number of years now. Initially they were used – and in fact still are used – for lifting trussing and so on, however, we found an increasing 30

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The TL-A320 is one of VMB’s newest and most popular lifting systems

amount of users wanted to use these frontal load lifts to fly their line arrays. We then developed accessories and longer forks so that users could use these lifts for this function. The need to fly arrays continued to grow and we saw more customers buying the traditional frontal load lifts to fly their systems. We then decided to manufacture a lift that would be specifically designed to fly line arrays. This led to the development of the TL-A240 and the TL-A320. These two lifts enable users to actually situate their line array at half a metre from the lift. This means they have much more room to play with and, thus, achieve the desired inclination for the system set up. They have been a massive success and have become inventory of many small rental companies.” The TL-A240 and TL-A320 can lift 240kg and 320kg, respectively to a height of six metres. They are manufactured from aluminium and are designed to offer sustained front and lateral stability while guaranteeing fixed and safe positioning of the line array. VMB boasts that the advantage of its lifts over its competitors is the fact that the line array can be situated at half a metre.


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VMB LIFTS LIVE SOUND <

Javier Matali, VMB’s marketing director, explains: “With conventional front loading towerlifts the maximum weight is reduced the further along the forks you place the load. For example, a lift that has a maximum weight capacity of 300kg can only safely carry 190kg when that load is placed at half a metre from the lift. The TLA320, however, can raise 320kg at half a metre from the lift. The design of the base has also, for the first time, made it possible to load a line array directly next to the towerlift body without the outriggers getting in the way. This also means the subs can be placed between the outriggers when the top cabinets are up and the system is ready to play. All these features are the result of a very long design process and is what really marks the difference between these lifts and other front loading lifts. This is why they are specifically designed for flying line arrays.” INTERNATIONALLY KNOWN The VMB Towerlifts are used in over 30 countries through the efforts of its international distribution chain. Graham Gosden, technical director of MilTec UK. (VMB’s UK dealer), says: “These lifts are great. We have been able to demonstrate how practical they are to our customers and everyone loves them. If you have a small line array that you need to set up at various locations, I can’t think of anything better. It literally only takes about 20 minutes set up and you have your line array in the air. There is no need for unnecessary trussing and so on. The TL-As are so adaptable to a variety of situations and couldn’t be more user friendly. Another big selling point is the fact that all VMB’s lifts are BGV-C1 certificated.” VMB has been manufacturing its towerlifts in house for almost three decades. The release of the new TL-As have been an extremely successful venture for the company and it is looking forward to seeing them become an industry standard and the benchmark for lifting line arrays. > vmb.es

TL series VMB’s TL series is offered in various configurations to meet application demands. Here’s a run down... • TL-054 Frontal load Towerlift: max.load 220kg/max height 5.45 m • TL-055 Frontal load Towerlift: max.load 220kg/max height 5.1 m • TL-056 Frontal load Towerlift: max load 200kg/max. height 6.5m • TL-072: 240kg/6.5m Towerlift • TL-075C: 300kg/6.5m Towerlift • TL-078: 280kg/8m Towerlift • TL-A240 Frontal load Towerlift: specially designed for lifting line array PA. It lifts 240kg with the centre of gravity situated at 50cm from the towerlift profile. Max.height 6m. • TL-A320 Frontal load Towerlift: specially designed for lifting line array PA. It lifts 320kg with the centre of gravity situated at 50cm from the towerlift profile. Max.height 6m. www.audioprointernational.com

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> POST PRODUCTION CROSSRAIL ONE

Sounds from the Underground Construction on Crossrail One has already begun under numerous studios in Soho – the area of London's most active post production community. With plans for another Crossrail underway, the impact these train routes will have on the studios is uncertain. Andrew Low digs into the implications for the area...

If studios have taken reasonable steps to isolate themselves from low frequency noise, then they should be okay. Dave Bell – White Mark.

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nyone who has been paying attention to the news in London lately will know that construction on Crossrail One has begun 20 metres below the ground parallel to Oxford Street near Soho Square. The big news in the music press has been the closure of the Astoria Theatre, but the construction holds far more significance for the vibrant post production community that exists in the area. While this new route will be ideal for commuters, there are questions over how vibrations and noise from the new line will affect this work and with plans for Crossrail Three already underway, it seems the new lines could affect many studios in the area. To understand the process of this project, one has to accept that it was, and is, Crossrail’s job to deliver a design to the contractors for the new underground railway that would have the lowest possible construction costs, while meeting the objectives of the Bill passed by Parliament. A great deal of environmental PR was attached to the stated objectives for Crossrail, but anyone working in sound in Soho will know that the required understanding of ‘quiet’ is not one recognised by people and regulatory bodies outside our industry. Two years prior to the beginning of construction of Crossrail One, the owners of Grand Central Post Production on Great Marlborough Street began serious research into the effects

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that a train line running 20 metres below its building might have on voice recording, sound design, editing and mixing projects at the studio. Grand Central enlisted the services of some heavy hitting experts in the shape of White Mark, Capita Symonds and Dr Hugh Hunt of Cambridge University’s Department of Engineering to help present their concerns at the Parliamentary Enquiry into Crossrail. While the issue for many studios was potential noise and vibration disturbance, Transport For London’s (TFL) main concern was designing and getting the railway built as economically as possible. The original TFL proposal that 35dB LA max is a noise level that, only if exceeded, would be disrupting to the work performed at a studio, was deemed completely unacceptable. Significantly, to get the noise level below 35dB LA max would require advanced and extensive noise and vibration mitigation to be applied to the area of the track running under Grand Central. After many meetings with TFL, Grand Central’s solicitors and their Queen’s Council, an acceptable maximum noise level within the studio areas was finally determined. This new benchmark is based on a third octave analysis of the background noise and sets a level that is below the NC25 mark specified for dubbing theatres by both Dolby and the relevant BS standard. This level is now known as the Grand Central Criteria.


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CROSSRAIL ONE POST PRODUCTION White Mark’s MD, David Bell, was heavily involved in the processes of establishing the new limit. He explains: “The Crossrail Commission was saying that the noise in the building would be no more than 35dB LA max. I have heard this and it is quite loud in the context of studio monitoring conditions. It was predicted to be predominantly quite low in principal frequency content. You might have been able to filter it out but this would compromise the integrity of voice recordings severely.” In addition to the Grand Central Criteria, other considerations were achieved by Grand Central’s team regarding the engineering and design of the track during construction as well as the finished line. The Commission agreed to move the joints of the new track to a minimum distance of 100 metres on either side of Grand Central Studios and float the track that will run under the studio. Bell comments: “The new floating track will consist of rails that are decoupled from the track’s sleepers, and the sleepers themselves will sit on a concrete bed which is itself decoupled from the tunnel structure. With all these measures in place, Grand Central should be well protected from any noise from the new track once it is in operation. “Grand Central spent an enormous amount of time and money to make sure it would be protected from any disturbances of the new rail line. In the beginning of the process it was claimed that the noise from the track would not be any louder than the existing tube lines underneath Soho. This may have relevance for a building which is the same distance from Crossrail as it is from a current operating tube line, but is of no comfort to a studio that has been carefully sited at a safe distance from, say, the Central Line and was faced with a new railway directly beneath it. “The bottom line is that there are people in the community that have put their life’s work on the line and everything they own to build a business based in their studio complex and the question for them was: in three months time are my clients going to stop coming? This was a stark question to ask within the framework of the adversarial system of the enquiry. It is perhaps not the best environment to try and arrive at an intellectual consensus, but this is what has been achieved. In the beginning, I thought that it would just take a meeting or two with their experts in order to reach an agreement, but it took a year and a half of work for a lot of people, a great deal

of money and many meetings with solicitors present and explanations through QCs to eventually achieve an acceptable concensus.” As part of this agreement, a monitoring regime for measuring the compliance by the constructors and operators of the railway to specified construction noise levels together with the Grand Central Criteria for the completed railway has been established. If these criteria are breached then the agreement allows for the reconstruction of the lower ground floor studios at the expense of the Secretary of State. Construction work has now begun and it is only a matter of time before the line will be finished and trains running. Grand Central and White Mark are confident that the measures put in place will provide adequate protection from noise generated by the track, but the effects on studios outside the area where the track is floated are less certain. “Studios that do not have low frequency isolation may be effected,” Bell continues. “Another concern is Crossrail Three, which is set to run somewhere between Piccadilly Circus and Tottenham Court Road. If studios have taken reasonable steps to isolate themselves from low frequency noise, then they should be okay. If studios in the Soho area have concerns after having listened to what TFL is saying, then they should talk to a person such as me or another acoustician for an explanation as to what the development will mean for them. The Crossrail project has pledged to spend a significant extra sum to achieve the floating tracks and offer protection to the studios in the vicinity, but when you think that the cost of relocation of even one studio complex, should this have become necessary, could well be a comparable amount, this is a more than reasonable sum for the railway, for the tax payer and for the post community in Soho.” Although Grand Central’s actions were undertaken to protect the studio from the effects of Crossrail, there was also concern on behalf of Soho’s post production environment as a whole to debunk rumours that the new line caused excessive low frequency noise. TFL has worked with Grand Central to ensure this risk is now virtually eliminated. The benefits of the increased accessibility that the rail system will in time provide will only help the area enhance its pre-eminent position in the world of film and television production. > whitemark.com > grand-central-studios.com

It took a year and a half of work, a great deal of money and many meetings with solicitors present and explanations through QCs to achieve an acceptable concensus. Dave Bell – White Mark


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>> APPLICATIONS

Adlib tightens up the punchline Liverpool production company takes care of the full production for funny man Frankie Boyle’s UK tour

Adlib handled all three production elements of Boyle’s UK tour on one knee

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iverpool rental company Adlib handled all three production elements for comedy quiz show star Frankie Boyle’s UK tour, bringing the acerbic Scot’s controversial brand of humour to sell-out crowds. Adlib sound engineer Hassane Essiahi worked FOH, taking care of a surprisingly complex task, which required precision and balance to get Boyle’s voice sounding natural while maintaining his comic timing.

Essiahi specified a JBL VerTec 4889 line array system comprised of ten elements per side, along with Adlib’s own AA281, AA81s and AA122s as front fills. This was powered by Camco Vortex V6 amplifiers and equalised via Dolby Lake Processors, complete with remote tablet. Essiahi mixed the show on a Yamaha LS9 digital console, C. Boyle used a lavalier headset and Shure KSM9 hand held radio mic.

The challenge is eq-ing the system to get the colouration and tonality of the voice spot on. -Hassane Essiahi

“The challenge is eq-ing the system to get the colouration and tonality of the voice spot on,” explained Essiahi. “It is a lot of PA for one person, but the VerTec is extremely good for getting nice tight focuses and even coverage all around the room.” Essiahi also explained that, since French is his native language, if he can understand what Boyle is saying, then certainly everyone else can. > adlibaudio.co.uk

Neutrik supplies Shiny Toy Guns NUMEROUS Neutrik connectors were taken on the road with the Grammy Award nominated synth rock band, Shiny Toy Guns. The band is unique in terms of its cable and connector needs, since the majority of its inputs are sources that do not make sound on their own. In order to recreate its sound on stage, the crew fashions all of its own cable looms by hand, each one tailored to meet the needs of individual band members and the masses of equipment that surrounds them – many racked instruments results in looms numbering 48 channels. “Our crew will walk into a tiny venue with enough looms to mic the London Philharmonic Orchestra,” 34

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said bassist Jeremy Dawson. “The promoters lose their minds and refuse our input list, but thanks to Neutrik connectors and our crew’s ability to build looms out of earthworms if necessary, we can play virtually anywhere and in any size venue without interruption.” Neutrik provided an extensive selection of connectors for the tour, including XX Series XLR connectors and quarter-inch Silent plugs. Fred Besnoff, of Neutrik USA, noted: “We respect their crews’ intuition in creating their own looms on stage as a way to ensure the band is accurately and securely connected while performing in any venue.” > neutrik.co.uk

>> ALCONS HAS… … maintained its presence on the theatre circuit with the provision of a Pro Ribbon line array system for Les Miserables in the Netherlands. Sound designer Nick Lidster (above right with Jeroen ten Brinke) commented: “The combination of the two types of Alcons line array work remarkably well together, considering how they are arrayed and configured. Which says a lot for the phase accuracy of the Alcons Pro Ribbon systems.” > alconsaudio.com www.audioprointernational.com


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APPLICATIONS <<

No punches pulled for Obama’s presidential inauguration event Harman, Yamaha, Optocore and Shure gear used for the grand celebration OVER TWO MILLION people gathered in Washington DC to witness the swearing in of America’s first black President, Barack Obama. The enormous event was the most watched, most security conscious and costly of any inauguration in the past. In order to properly broadcast the speech to the huge crowds, Maryland Sound Industries (MDI) used Crown I-Tech amplifiers, a massive JBL sound system, Yamaha PM5D consoles and Optocore’s optical digital network system. MSI worked with FOH engineer Pat Baltzell of Baltzell Audio Designs to develop a PA system that would provide clear and proper coverage for the crowds that did not block the spectators’ view. In total, 15 of MSI’s custom-built, ground-stacked line array towers, which ranged from four to 14 VT4889 loudspeakers each, were dispersed throughout the vicinity of the Mall. Two 14-box clusters were placed at the main stage (one per side) and six towers were arranged on the outside perimeter of the main lawn (which measured approximately 550 feet deep by 1,000 feet wide) as delays. Additional delay towers were set up amongst the audience area just past the 305-metre (1,000-foot) mark to provide coverage for other crowds. The main VT4889 system was complemented by JBL VP7315DP

The Boss raises the roof for Obama

MSI used Crown ITech amplifiers, a massive JBL sound system, a pair of Yamaha PM5D consoles and Optocore’s optical digital network system for the event.

powered loudspeakers, VRX932 portable line array loudspeakers and Control 25AV pole-mounted speakers for coverage of the VIP sections, choir and band areas. The televised onset of the inauguration began a few days before the event with a concert held at the Lincoln memorial, which featured Bruce Springsteen, Beyonce, U2, Sheryl Crow, Shakira and many others. Clair Global provided 16 channels of Shure UR4D systems with varying arrangements of bodypacks and handheld transmitters featuring SM58 capsules.

Paradise Lost likes metal on MEIs YORKSHIRE, UK’S GOTH metal heroes and self pronounced kings of gloom, Paradise Lost have spent the last two decades developing their dark metal sound while maintaining their haunting melody and dark rock power. The band has recently adapted their new material into an even more base and raw style and have chosen LD System’s LD MEI in ear monitoring system to monitor this organic approach on stage. LD’s MEI in ear monitoring system provides the band with 160 possible frequencies, which allow ten systems to be operated in parallel without intermodulation. Additionally, its corrected frequency response provides the best available adaptation to auditory requirements. A limiter in the system’s input prevents distortion at levels up to an overload of +12dB, in order to provide the best available hearing www.audioprointernational.com

LD’s MEIs are under all his metal hair

protection. It also offers both mono and stereo options, making it suitable for a variety of live and theatre applications. Both the transmitter and the receiver of the MEI have

intuitive multifunctional display, which indicates all operating states. The sender also has a headphone output, allowing monitoring at the sender side. Optimised power management ensures a long battery life without replacement. Highquality earphones for the receiver and an optimised power management component with long battery life also come as standard. The band is currently recording a new album in the snowy mountains of Orebro, Sweden with touring plans to follow. LD Systems wide variety of professional audio products and accessories, including its portable and installation PA speakers, wireless systems and microphones, amplifier range and small format mixers, are distributed in the United Kingdom by Adam Hall UK.

SCRATCHING

THE PAD Recent industry deals THE KILLERS have set out on a world tour to support their new album with long-time FOH engineer James Gebhard manning the helm. Gebhard chose DiGiCo’s SD7 console for the tour, provided by Eighth Day Sound. He has used DiGiCo’s digital board for many tours in the past including The Killers previous trips and dates with The Strokes. Engineer Clarke LePlante is also using a DiGiCo D5 for monitors > digico.org MANY FAMOUS ARTISTS at the 51st Annual Grammy Awards used Future Sonics’ ear monitors. In addition, many of the company’s sponsored artists received awards and performed during the event. > futuresonics.com THE WOODLANDS CHURCH in Bristol has installed an M-400 VMixing System from RSS as part of an investment in a permanent house sound system. The church’s system now features the M-400 console and the S1608 digital snake. > rolandsg.co.uk THE HIVES RECENTLY played a private gig at The Metro in Sydney, Australia, where they used a full suite of Rode microphones. The band and FOH engineer Zoran Malceski was very impressed with the sound reproduction and durability of the mics, so much so that he has decided to fit the band’s new recording studio exclusively with Rode mics. > rodemics.com INSYNC PRODUCTIONS USED a Martin Audio Blackline PA rig for the Democrats Abroad London Inaugural Ball, held in the Royal Lancaster Hotel’s Nine Kings Suite. The Blackline system was used to service the 1,400 American guests. > martin-audio.com

> ld-systems.com

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> IN SESSION

Studios:

People and equipment behind studios in the UK and around the world ...

Rooms: Control room, live room, white rooms Consoles: 72-channel SSL Duality Mics: Neumann, AKG, Coles, Schoeps, Beyer, Sennheiser, Shure Outboard: Manley, Neve, Fairchild, Pultec, Summit, Al Smart, Universal Audio, Monitoring: ATC, Auratone, Dynaudio, Yamaha

Rooms: Control room, live room, isolation booth Consoles: API 28 x 24 with 550/550A eqs Mics: Neumann, AKG, Coles, Sennheiser, Shure, Royer, Audio-Technica Outboard: Manly, Neve, Avalon, Chandler, Al Smart, Universal Audio, Little Labs Monitoring: ProAc, Yamaha

Cream Recording Studios

Matchbox Studios

WITH THE HELP of some legendary industry figures, Cream was purposebuilt from the ground up in west London by owners Richard and Louise Eastwood – the husband and wife team that launched the successful AV hire and sales company GearBox in 1997 – and former Lansdowne Studios manager and chief engineer Chris Dibble. Cream’s 405 square foot control room was designed by Greenwichbased acoustic experts and sports a brand new 72-channel Solid State Logic

OWNED AND MANAGED by multitalented producer, engineer, songwriter and musician Dwight Baker (pictured), with studio assistant Ted P Robertson on hand, Matchbox is located on South Madrone Trail in the Texan city of Austin. The studio was purpose-designed and built with floating rooms for exceptional acoustics and great sound isolation. It features a spacious 343 square foot control room which houses a 32channel API 1608 console, Pro Tools HD3 and an extensive collection of outboard gear, encased in wooden racks. Hard drives and tape machines are stowed in the neighbouring machine room to minimise ambient noise. With optimum lines of sight back to the control room, the 45 square foot isolation booth and the 357 square foot live room are well equipped for the empty-handed musician, with an array of guitars, keyboards, amplifiers and a particularly extensive percussion collection (Baker has drummed for acts including Heart and Enrique Inglesias). The rooms both have dimmer switches and adjustable temperature controls.

roof panels, making the characteristics suitable for a wide range of applications. Provision for high definition video projection is available in both the control and recording rooms and film scoring and sound-to-picture tasks are well catered for, with Chris Dibble in place as chief engineer. Dibble, whose CV includes major film scores such as Billy Elliot and Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, comments: “At a time when the London music recording industry seems somewhat downbeat due to the recent closure of several major studios,

“Cream’s new studio is a statement of intent and shows that professional music recording is alive and well in the UK.” Chris Dibble – chief engineer Duality console and custom ATC surround monitoring, plus racks of outboard featuring a wish-list of the most highly sought after names, including Pultec. A 48-I/O Pro Tools HD3 Accel system is provided as standard. Recording Architecture has also worked its magic on the 850 square foot double-height live room, which boasts adjustable acoustics and two separation booths, with space to accommodate up to 30 musicians. The floor of the irregular shaped room is entirely floating, and the acoustics are easily variable via a system of adjustable

Cream’s new studio is a statement of intent and shows that professional, high-quality music recording is very much alive, well and thriving in the UK.” Recent projects at Cream include the final mix of Missing You, a new album by Grammy Award-winning Korean classical artist Sumi Jo, and the 5.1 audio mix for the Girls Aloud Tangled Up Tour DVD. The latter was undertaken by Tim Summerhayes, who says: “It is a great working environment and has all the equipment I need to mix high-end sound to picture projects. It’s stylish and able to provide the kind of creature comforts my clients expect.”

Telephone: +44 20 8963 8622 Web: www.creamrecordingstudios.com

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Once the tracks have been laid down, visitors can relax outside in the designer swimming pool and hot tub. API’s 1608 console is a new addition at Matchbox and was purchased by Baker – whose songwriting credits include Kelly Clarkson – when his original API 2244 went down. The studio was so busy at the time that waiting for it to be repaired proved uneconomical, as Baker comments: “There is a shortage of good techs here in Austin and we have a full calendar of both up-andcoming bands and big ticket acts like Kelly Clarkson, which means that down time is absolutely disastrous for us. The new API 1608 was the perfect solution. “I put some Avedis MA5 pres in the open slots so I can inject some Neve tone here and there,” he adds. “It’s cool, and a little weird, to have other colors on an API console.” Since its arrival, Drive-Thru Records artist Halifax, and Universal Records artist Bob Schnider have been able to take advantage of the new console, both having recently recorded their latest projects through it.

“I put some Avedis MA5 pres in the open slots so I can inject some Neve tone here and there. It’s cool.” Dwight Baker – owner and manager Telephone: +11 12 394 1249 Web: www.matchbox-studios.com

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IN SESSION <

//////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

To have your studio featured in this section, please send all details to:

andrew.low@intentmedia.co.uk or call +44 1992 535646

Rooms: Two live rooms Consoles: Trident

Rooms: Studio One, Studio Two, Mastering Complex Consoles: 72-channel AMS Neve 88R, 72-channel SSL K Series,

Mics: AKG, Audix, Shure

Vintage Custom EMI TG Mastering Console Mics: Neumann, AKG, Schoeps, RCA, B&K, PML, Beyer, Sanken, Mylab, Royer Outboard: Neve, AMS, Pultec, Focusrite, Empirical Labs, Valley People, Eventide Monitoring: Genelec, Yamaha, Duntech, Orpheus

Outboard: Neve, Tube-Tech, dbx Monitoring: Yamaha, Mackie, Genelec

Station West Studio

Studios 301

STATION WEST IS located in Nashville, Tennessee, between the Berry Hill districts, near the city’s famous Music Row area. Despite its urban location the studio is very private and secure. The studio boasts a comfortable atmosphere and creative vibe as its greatest attributes. It was custom built with a technically sound and state-ofthe-art design and construction by the world-renowned agency Michael Cronin and Associates. Station West was one of the first facilities in Nashville to make the leap

WITH SISTER STUDIOS in local Byron Bay, Stockholm and Cologne, Studios 301 is the company’s flagship facility and has been Australia’s most prestigious and largest studio complex since 1926. 301 features state-of-the-art studios along with a talented team of engineers, assistants and support staff. In-house technical staff not only offer immediate on-site technical support, but their expertise provides a unique service to the studios and engineers, in the design, development and modification of equipment and inhouse proprietary systems, to suit specific needs. For breaks in recording, a spacious and private sunny courtyard complete with barbeque area provides the ideal space for unwinding in an open-air environment. The studio also provides an on-site self-contained apartment to accommodate producers, and a convenient loading dock allows direct, easy access for loading equipment and instruments into the large recording space. Tony Visconti (David Bowie, Morrissey, Stranglers) comments:

Sonics and a Neve side car, Station West matches its new and old gear to the best effect to provide high quality tracking and mixdown. The studio’s Neve sidecar is a rare and expensive bit of kit. Developed during the height of the Neve craze in the mid ‘80s, It offers the high-quality preamps and great sounding eq that helped the company gain such success. It has direct outs on each channel, a two-channel stereo output, talkback and auxes. Station West also offers a range of instruments for use during

In addition to its state-of-the-art gear, Station West utilises a vast collection of vintage gear to provide a classic front end for modern recordings. to digital with a Radar II 24-bit Hard Disk recording system. Both of its recording studios now use fully loaded Pro Tools systems. The result is a group of studio engineers who have many years of success manipulating digital technology to its best degree. In addition to its state-of-the-art gear, it still utilises a vast collection of vintage kit to provide a classic front end for modern recordings. The analog gear housed at the studio is an assortment of top brands. From its Trident console to outboard from dbx, Universal Audio, and Tube-Tech, Oram

sessions, including a Yamaha C7 Grand Piano. While it welcomes guest engineers, a staff of first-rate engineers and producers are employed at the studio full time. The famous country music scene of Nashville has both influenced and benefited the studio as it has hosted many country and rock superstars that have used the rooms, including Dolly Parton, Allison Kraus, Ricky Scaggs and Bad Santa star Billy Bob Thornton. The studio says Station West is the ideal setting for clients looking to record in the Nashville area.

Telephone: (615) 463-9944 Web: www.stationwest.com

www.audioprointernational.com

“I have spent two months at Studios 301 and I must report that the studio and staff were far above and beyond my expectations. With many of the world class studios closing their doors these days Studios 301 is thriving because they’ve got it right. “The equipment is on everyone’s dream list. The staff are extremely knowledgeable, friendly and courteous. It’s more than worth the journey from anywhere on the planet to record at such a fabulous facility as Studios 301.” Adjacent to the recording studios is 301’s mastering complex. Due to celebrate its 30th birthday next year, it is the largest fully purpose-designed and built facility of its kind in Australia. Its mastering environments feature specifically tailored acoustics and monitoring along with high-end analog and digital signal processing, including vintage custom EMI TG mastering consoles and components that all provide a smooth, warm analog sound. A talented team of mastering engineers is on hand at the facility and discount rates and packages are on offer to independent artists.

“I’ve spent two months at Studios 301 and the studio and the staff were far above and beyond my expectations.” Tony Visconti – producer Telephone: +61 (02) 9698 5888 Web: www.studios301.com

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> PEOPLE

SOUND

BITES

AFTER 30 years as a key figure in Yamaha Music UK, sole managing director Andrew Kemble is taking up a new position within the company – heading Yamaha’s Emerging Markets Group, responsible for the company’s business in Eastern Europe, Greece and Turkey. He will also continue to be part of the senior management group at Yamaha’s European HQ, as a vice president. > yamahacommercialaudio.com RENOWNED AUDIO designer Andy Hunt arrives as part of a dynamic expansion programme at Void Acoustics. Hunt brings extensive skills in pro-audio design and manufacturing, gained from a long-standing career in the industry that has included consultancy work for several prestigious brands. > voidaudio.com CHRIS GOODDIE has stepped down from his role as sales director at Focusrite Novation in view of a planned attempt to find every species of a rare and endangered family of birds. Between February 1st 2009 and January 31st 2010, Gooddie will endeavour to see, in its entirety, the family of birds known as Pittas. In total, there are 32 species of the beautiful bird and no one has yet seen all of them in a single year. A new website, www.pittas world.com, has been set up, which charts the mission's progress. > focusrite.com JAY EASLEY has been appointed as the manager of Midas and Klark Teknik for the Americas. Easley has been with Bosch Communication Systems for over nine years, having previously served as director of live sound for the greater Bosch Systems group, which includes Dynacord, ElectroVoice, Klark Teknik and Midas. He also has over 20 years’ experience as a FOH engineer. > midaconsoles.com

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Audio-Technica expands sales and marketing team Company strengthened with new recruits

RSG UK grows with two new appointments

Ben Wood (left) and Logan Helps get new roles at Audio Technica

AUDIO-TECHNICA has strengthened its sales and marketing teams with the appointment of Ben Wood and the promotion of existing technical support manager Logan Helps. Wood (pictured top left) will take on the role of area sales manager for London and the South, while Helps joins the marketing team as training and product support specialist. The appointments have been made in response to the demands of the firm’s customers. Helps (pictured top right) has been with Audio-Technica since 2005. With a background in both live and studio engineering and broadcast media support, he is well-placed to provide product training for Audio-Technica customers in his new role, and will continue to act as first point of

contact for dealers’ technical and product queries. “I have worked closely with our sales and marketing department on many projects in the last four years,” said Helps. “I’m looking forward to broadening my role in offering extra support and training for internal staff and customers.” Wood, who will be specifically catering to the needs of the MI market, has experience in management and promotion in the US, South America and the UK. He recently acted as a sponsorship agent for some of the UK’s leading music festivals. Wood commented: “I am excited to be joining the Audio-Technica team and in a position to work with some of the highest quality products within the music industry.” > audio-technica.com

RSG HAS ADDED Simon Kenning (above) to its team to serve in a newlycreated role, providing sales and support for the RSS portfolio of digital control systems, including the M-400 V-Mixing System. Kenning joins RSG from Stage Electrics, where he was the company’s business development manager. Prior to that, Kenning held positions in performing arts production, working as a freelance sound engineer on many festivals in western England and Wales. In his position at Stage Electrics, Kenning was responsible for the design and implementation of several technical systems within theatres and colleges. RSG feels that his combined experience and technical knowledge make him the perfect fit for the new role. RSG has also added Helena Lewis as the RSS point of liaison at Roland’s national headquarters in Swansea. > rolandsg.co.uk

Martin Audio MD steps down MARTIN AUDIO has announced that David Bissett-Powell is to step down as managing director and Robert Lingfield is to step down as sales and marketing director. Bissett-Powell commented: “Last year, as part of our succession planning, I appointed Anthony Taylor as joint managing director and he has filled this position admirably. With his 14 years of experience within the team I am now happy to hand over the reigns to him fully, although I shall remain involved with the firm as a consultant. “Amongst other roles, I will be supporting the company’s distribution in China by becoming an ambassador to the region. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the amazing team that I’ve had the pleasure and

privilege of working alongside over the last 17 years.” Lingfield will hand over many of his sales responsibilities to Simon Bull, who has been with the company for ten years and has been mentored by

Lingfield throughout the last two of these. Lingfield will also remain involved with the company, but in a different role where he will focus on a new product that Martin plans to release later in 2009. “Having spent ten years building a successful distribution network with a tremendous sales and marketing team, now is the right time to hand over these responsibilities to others,” added Lingfield. “Like David, I shall remain involved with the company but will now have the time to concentrate on certain specific projects which I could not have contemplated if I were still responsible for the day-to-day sales and marketing management.” > martinaudio.com www.audioprointernational.com


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DISTRIBUTION <

North American venture for TransAudio TUBE TECH has inked a deal with TransAudio for distribution of its products in North America. TransAudio has taken on the products to help increase the company’s exposure in the North American recording, mastering and touring markets. With 30 years of experience manufacturing tube compressors, equalisers and mic pres, products like Tube Tech’s CL1B tube compressor have become industry standards in the recording and highend live sound sector. Brad Lunde, the president of TransAudio Group, commented: “I am thrilled to be part of the Tube Tech family. These are pro audio devices that never go out of style. It will be an absolute pleasure to represent a brand with such authority and renown.” TransAudio has also appointed recording engineer Jesper Bo Nielsen as its new sales engineer to offer sales and product support for its customers.

Outline adds new China partner Shoushan brings foreign professional audio products and technology to territory ITALIAN LOUDSPEAKER manufacturer Outline has appointed Shoushan System Integration as its sole distributor for China, Hong Kong and Macao, with immediate effect. Since its establishment, Shoushan, which has its headquarters in Guangzhou Panyu, has been committed to bringing foreign professional audio sound reinforcement products and technology into China. It has gradually developed a comprehensive range of professional equipment sales, engineering design, commissioning, installation and after-sales services. A company spokesperson commented: “Outline is a company that in Shoushan’s opinion ensures

Mr Tempo of Shoushan (right) shakes on the deal

‘the supremacy of credibility’, as the firm has a corporate approach, enabling it to build on Outline’s reputation, thus furthering its work in the avant-garde of the professional audio field.” > outline.it

SOUND

BITES

PRO-AUDIO TECHNIK and Mosco Sound will now handle distribution of Outboard products in Germany and the Republic of Ireland, respectively. They were brought on board to handle sales and support for a new range of TiMax products. Outboard’s latest product is the TiMax SoundHub, a scaleable multichannel audio mix engine and playback system for theatrical productions, live events and AV installations, which features dynamic routing, mixing, eq, delay matrix, internal multitrack audio record/ playback, remote control and networking for systems integration and audio showcontrol applications. > outboard.co.uk

> transaudiogroup.com

www.audioprointernational.com

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> NEW PRODUCT

NEW GEAR >> Recent releases in audio technology 1

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Crown I-Tech HD Series

Ableton Live 8

Oram S200 Live Sound Mixer

Steinberg Cubase 5

THEY SAY: Resets expectations of what a pro touring amplifier should deliver.

THEY SAY: Live 8 has a wealth of new techniques, effects and improvements.

SPECIFICATIONS: I-Tech HD has a new DSP engine co-developed with BSS and Linear Phase FIR filters. It has the firm’s Class-I amplifier technology with new software, and variety of input options compatible with CobraNet and LevelMax limiters (Peak, Thermal and RMS). The OmniDriveHD DSP Engine of the I-Tech HD is built on new architecture to provide a platform for signal processing. Firewall FIR filter technology is included, along with AudioCore featuring 24-bit, 192 kHz A/D and D/A converters. Crown Audio’s patented Power Factor Correction (PFC) techniques allow I-Tech HD to draw current from the mains more efficiently, which enables I-Tech HD to provide the highest output voltage available.

SPECIFICATIONS: Features include a new groove engine, revamped warping techniques, updated Beats Warp Mode, new Complex Warp Mode, slice audio files to MIDI tracks based on transients, live looping, five new effects, crossfades in the Arrangement View, group tracks and a reworked MIDI editor. Live 8 also has a feature that enables users to share live sets online. Max for Live is another new aspect of the software, allowing the creation of instruments, effects and extensions tools. The company has also collaborated with Akai Professional to design a new hardware controller for use with Ableton Live. The APC40 features controls for real-time mixing, remixing and production.

> crownaudio.com

> ableton.com

THEY SAY: With many years of live sound mixing experience, Gunter Erdmann and John Oram are bringing a live sound mixer in a rack format to market.

THEY SAY: This major release is a milestone in the history of Cubase.

SPECIFICATIONS: The S200 is a tenchannel live recording mixer in a rack mount format designed for live use. Designed by John Oram, an early Vox and Trident designer and subsequent creator of analog recording consoles under his own name, the S200 has an impressive frequency response of 20Hz to 60kHz (within one dB). The new board also features four-band eq, eight XLR balanced mic inputs and stereo channel. The mic amps on the S200 have a gain of 0dB to +60dB (true unity, no pad required). There will also be a deluxe model available with broadcast standard I/O interface with all metal pots, connectors and control knobs.

SPECIFICATIONS: Cubase 5 offers new capabilities including an integrated vocal pitch editing toolset, extended composing features and a convolution reverb, as well as workflow and other enhancements, including full support for Windows Vista 64-bit editions. The new software also features a set of beat creation tools for beats, rhythms and grooves, the new LoopMash VST instrument developed with Yamaha, the Groove Agent One drum sampling plugin in addition to Beat Designer. It has a VariAudio vocal pitch editing tool and a new VST3 PitchCorrect plugin based on Yamaha Pitch Fix technology. New VST Expression technology has also been added for enhanced song writing and composition options.

> oram.com

> steinberg.net

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Peavey IPR Series amplifiers

Lab.gruppen FP 14000, FP 9000 and FP 4000

Aphex Model 188 Mic Preamplifier

EV DC-One digital loudspeaker controller

THEY SAY: The new IPR touring amps have increased output power.

THEY SAY: FP+ is practically perfect in every way.

THEY SAY: The Electro-Voice DC-One sets new benchmarks for performance.

SPECIFICATIONS: The IPR Series amps weigh less than seven pounds and are designed with a resonant switch-mode power supply and a high-speed Class D topology. They have two channels with independent 100 Hz crossovers and a variable-speed fan in an aluminium chassis. Peavey’s DDT speaker protection with multi-point clip sampling leads a protection-circuitry suite that includes DC, Temp, Signal and Active safeguards. As well as the standard IPR 1600, IPR 3000, IPR 4400 and IPR 6000 models, Peavey has announced four models that have 32-bit, floating-point digital signal processing. The IPR DSP models ship with program-specific eq presets, as well as delays, crossover and stereo/mono operation with lockable security settings.

SPECIFICATIONS: New additions in the FP+ Series include the FP 14000, the FP 9000 and the FP 4000, which provide 14,000 W (2 x 7,000 W @ 2 Ohms), 9,000 (2 x 4,500 W @ 2 Ohms) and 4,000 W (2 x 2,000 W @ 2 Ohms), respectively, all in a 2U chassis. An updated version of the Regulated Switch Mode Power Supply is featured with the FP14000. All of the new models include Lab.gruppen’s patented Class TD output stage, a breakthrough amplifier topology that provides the efficiency of Class D in a Class B design. Other features of the amps include the company’s proprietary Intercooler system, comprehensive warning and protection features and a NomadLink network interface as standard.

THEY SAY: The Model 188 represents a streamlined and cost-effective alternative to the company’s flagship remote preamp, the Model 1788A.

> peavey.com

> labgruppen.com

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SPECIFICATIONS: The new eightchannel Remote Controlled Microphone Preamplifier was designed for mobile systems with limited space. It features eight mic preamps in a 1U rackmountable chassis. All the settings of the 188 can be controlled via Ethernet or MIDI by using Aphex’s 1788A-RC hardware remote or the 1788SW control software (PC and Mac) or with Pro Tools. Model 188 also features an analog output and two ADAT Optical outputs, both of which carry eight channels of audio. The two outputs can be used for redundant operation or combined for higher sampling rates (SMUX).

SPECIFICATIONS: The DC-One is designed for use with small to medium-sized mobile and installed sound systems. The DC-One’s front-panel-accesscontrol allows users to select from a custom configured set of presets with a locking preset mode. It has a front panel USB connector for the PC-Editor, and accepts analog or digital (AES-EBU) input signals. The RS232 on the rear also provides eight contact closures for preset changes, or allows two units to be linked for larger systems. The unit also features two XLR, two XLR thru out and one digital XLR AES/EBU (2 Ch.) six XLR analog outputs (electronically balanced) and 24-Bit Delta-Sigma A/D D/A converters.

> aphex.com

> electrovoice.com www.audioprointernational.com


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> OPINION

Each month, TL Audio’s Sarah Yule offers her personal insights into the world of sound recording, mixed with some hot tips for you to try out...

Time is on your side Creating music that is of its time, yet timeless, is the ultimate goal of every professional audio engineer. Sarah Yule gives some pointers on creating universally appealing tracks… hat is it that allows certain songs, mixes, productions and scores to be remembered and praised long after their creation? There is no simple rule or formula for this, but there are some good points for consideration when starting work on your album project or production. So this month is a bit of theory for us to endeavour to put into practise. A universally appealing track is one that people from different places, races, cultures and ages can relate to in some way. The track needs to have strength to it and a power to be emotive. As a producer of a project it is essential to recognise early on what the strength of the project is and make this the key feature of the sound and shape of the album. For example, if the singer writes fantastic lyrics, keep the music simple to focus the listener’s ear on the words, go for a nice warm sound on the vocals, maybe using a ribbon mic and tube preamp combination. Add compression to bring the vocal upfront and closer to the listener, but keep a soft knee and try not to make it pump by keeping the release a little slower. In my opinion, a mistake often made in recent times is to over-perfect a vocal line. In classical recordings, the aim is to capture the performance in the most natural way. When you are listening back to the recording and shut your eyes it should be like you are there, experiencing the drama, excitement or beauty first-hand. I think this should be the same with a good vocalist. The emotion of a vocal is best heard when a singer is left to express

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him or herself freely, even if they are straining a little on a high note or singing some notes softer; the little imperfections make it sound real. Of course you can give your singer guidance, but when working with a talented vocalist there is nothing more beautiful than listening to them sing from their heart. To capture this, try taking a different approach to the recording. Instead of having them standing up with a pop shield and condenser mic, headphones on, lights blaring and shouting instructions down the talk back to them, try creating a more ambient feel. In your live room or recording space, turn the lights down and try setting up some room mics instead of just a close mic. Play around with positioning, as it will vary dependent on the size and shape of the room. I quite like using a coincident pair towards the corner of the room, facing inwards, with cardiod pick up patterns and not too close to the wall. Then, if the room allows, I also like to use a tube condenser mic on omni pick up placed higher up above the performer, a few feet away and facing downwards, slightly angled towards them. Do not be afraid to experiment with different microphones and their placement. I also think it’s important to decide whether you are creating songs or pieces of art. I say this, as a ‘song’ should have a simplistic structure, repetition and a familiarity to it. These aspects help a song to be catchy and memorable. On the other hand, a track that is a piece of ‘art’ should be a

You can give your singer guidance, but when working with a talented vocalist there is nothing more beautiful than listening to them sing from their heart.

statement, a mood, an object, a situation – whatever it is, it should embody that expression fully and be an emotive journey for the listener. To give an example, a timeless and fantastic album of ‘songs’ was Michael Jackson’s Thriller album, while a timeless and great album of ‘art’ was Pink Floyd’s Dark Side Of The Moon. Whatever you are trying to achieve with your project allow yourself to be creative and experimental, make music that means something to you and enjoy doing it. Don’t be afraid to try out new ideas, even if they don’t work – at least it is a lesson learnt. There is no key to making great music, but so long as you are making something that you are proud of and that you enjoyed creating, you have already created something timeless in your eyes, regardless of how others view it. Remember that each 60 seconds you use in life is also a minute lost. When you create an album for people to listen to, aim to make the seconds used a joyful experience and the minutes lost only to fond memories.

Sarah Yule is an experienced audio engineer and Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts (LIPA) graduate. After graduation, Yule became one of the first sales staff for Dolphin Music. She now works for TL Audio where she was recently promoted to the position of sales director, which is partially due to the success of her conceptual design of the Fat Track Tube Production Suit.

www.audioprointernational.com


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classifieds amplification



MARKETPLACE ADVERTISERS INDEX Alcons

+31 (0) 229 28 30 90

www.alconsaudio.com

Edoru

+44 (0) 1924 280 661

www.storeware.co.uk

Evi

www.electrovoice.co.uk

Flightcase

+44 (0) 182 760 009

Full Fat Audio

info@fullfataudio.com

Gasoline

www.gasoline.co.uk

Hot Rox

+44 (0) 115 987 3163

Hypex

+31 50 52 64 993

Ian Livingstone

+44 (0) 1483 421 491

ian@ianlivingstone.net

Neutrik

+44 (0) 1983 811 441

www.neutrik.com

TL Audio

+44 (0)1462 492090

www.tlaudio.co.uk

Yamaha

+44 (0) 1908 366700

yamahacommercialaudio.com



www.flightcasewarehouse.co.uk www.fullfataudio.com

www.hotrox.com sales@hypex.nl





AUDIO MARKETPLACE CLASSIFIED RATES: Minimum 12 Months One Annual Charge Quarter Page £1,495

To advertise call

Darrell Carter on 01992 535647 hotrox

SUPPLIER SPOTLIGHT

ELECTRO-VOICE Over 80 years in the business THE BRAND For more than 80 years, EV has been behind some of the most significant innovations in the history of sound reinforcement. Given EV's success bringing its customers pro audio solutions, it's no surprise that EV products are found on the world's biggest tours and finest installations, including the Olympic Games, the FIFA World Cup soccer tournament, Live 8, Kenny Chesney, the Rolling Stones, Live Earth Festival and most recently the AC/DC Black Ice tour. THE MARKETS With industry standards such as the RE20 and RE27ND, used in thousands of radio studios and the 635a and RE50 mics used for live news gathering around the globe, EV has earned a reputation as a market leader in broadcast mics. EV-Concert Sound includes sound reinforcement systems for large-scale events of all kinds – they could be giant open-air festivals, performances in concert

halls (great or small) or civic celebrations; they could be sporting or cultural events of global importance. EV is in a position to provide the ideal system for each one, its technical expertise and experience yielding a comprehensive and high-quality product portfolio. EV also offers a wide range of commercial audio products to fit any application. Paging horns, high efficiency compression drivers, powerful mixing amplifiers and complete digitally controlled paging systems are a few of the offerings. Club sound is a world of extremes. From the serious SPLs on the dance floor to the highresolution audio needed in smaller lounges and bars, EV provides a range of products that offer an ideal balance of control, performance and reliability for every club application. Entire club system can be remote-controlled and monitored on a laptop running EV's IRIS-Net software. > electrovoice.com

Made in the same factory that makes Jensen musical instrument speakers in Italy, Sica Speakers are the finest replacements available for your bass amplifier or PA system.

Utilizing modern materials and designed by engineers who care about tone, these speakers will bring new life to your speaker cabinet.

For a brochure or details please contact

UK Distribution Hot Rox UK Tel/Fax: 0115 987 3163 www.hotrox.com Email: sales@hotrox.com Unit 6, Millview Court, Newark Street, Nottingham NG2 4PS


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marketplace flight cases

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19” rack mount cases from Flightcase Warehouse Over 500 rack mount cases always in stock. Best UK prices. Fantastic value. 2u ABS £46.99 12u Full Flightcase £139.99 Heavy duty 4u ABS £77.99 G Including VAT and UK mainland delivery G All other sizes available G From 2u to 24u G ABS plastic G Heavy duty ABS plastic G Full flight rack cases G Sleeved rack cases G Rack bags Unit 2 Meltex House, Mariner, Lichfield Road Industrial Estate, Tamworth, Staffs, B79 7XE Tel: 01827 60009 Fax: 01827 313877 Email: sales@flightcasewarehouse.co.uk Web: www.flightcasewarehouse.co.uk

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CONTACT: DARRELL darrell.carter@intentmedia.co.uk Tel: 01992 53647


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marketplace manufacturer

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On the largest stages

Complete Sound System Solutions by Electro-Voice Kenny Chesney on tour with EV System Design by Phillip Scobee, Morris Leasing

manufacturer KC ad_audio pro marketplace.indd 1

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We hope we passed the audition.

CONNECT WITH EXPERIENCE


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ADVERTISER INDEX A

Active International....................................................22 & 23 Adam Hall ..........................................................................51 Alcons Audio ......................................................................17 Allen & Heath ....................................................................24

B

BBM ................................................................................153

C

Crown International ............................................................21

D

DBT....................................................................................43 Digico ................................................................................52

F

Funktion One ................................................................Cover

I

IIR ......................................................................................44

J

JTS ....................................................................................39

L

Lab.Gruppen........................................................................2 Leisuretec ............................................................................9

M

MC2 Audio ........................................................................19

N

Neutrik ................................................................................7

O

OHM ..................................................................................31 Optocore............................................................................27

V

VMB ..................................................................................33 Void ..................................................................................20


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The Audio Pro paparazzi are out every month taking pictures for our monthly section, Mixdown, which features friendly faces of people in the business and shots from industry events. If you have any pictures from an event that you would like us to include, please send them to andrew.low@intentmedia.co.uk.

The last word in Audio Pro PICK OF THE WEEK The Brit Awards once again acknowledges those behind the board, as Bernard Butler is named Best Producer of 2009. From this year onwards, the award will automatically go to the winner of MPG’s Producer of the Year category. Duffy, who worked with Butler on her album Rockferry, presented him with both gongs at the MPG awards 2009, held February 12th at Cafe de Paris, London.

IN-HOUSE MUSIC: Audio

Pro International’s designer Claire Brocklesby whips the crowd into a frenzy at London’s Club Colosseum recently.

The MPG’s event also honoured producer’s such as Danger Mouse, who picked up the Best International Producer prize, and Brian Eno who won the inaugural Joe Meek Award for Innovation.

COMRADES:

Producers aplenty

Richard Eastwood (left) of Cream Studios and Gearbox and Malcolm Atkin from the APRS gather with scores of recording industry pros for the inaugural Music Producers Guild Awards.

Many happy returns Uli Behringer cuts his company’s 20th birthday cake and reflects: “If anyone had asked me 20 years ago if Behringer would have 3,500 employees around the world, I would have said they were nuts.”

Paul Nicholson celebrates RSA’s new lines VQ Live and Eclipse with Tannoy’s Tim Gray and Innovason’s Xavier Pion (right)

THROWING SOME SHAPES:

Eighties new-wave diva Toyah Wilcox and her band belt out some classics at Red Square Audio’s launch party, mixed by company founder Paul Nicholson (see right)

FEATURE PLANNER April 09

May 09

June 09

July 09

Small format PA Mick Hughes EventTech Rigging

Speaker management Festival Focus ProLight + Sound NAB 2009

Personal Monitoring Outside Broadcast AES Munich PALME Expo

Live Mics Studio Consoles Infocomm 09 PLASA preview

To discuss advertising contact Darrell Carter on 01992 535647 darrell.carter@intentmedia.co.uk For editorial enquiries email Andrew Low andrew.low@intentmedia.co.uk or call 01992 535646 50

audioPRO

March 2009

www.audioprointernational.com


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Audio Pro Issue 17 March 2009