Issue 33 • October 2010
LIVE • COMMERCIAL • RECORDING • BROADCAST
Against all odds Drum and Bass duo Chase and Status' FOH Sean Rampton explains that the show must go on
REVEALED >>>> PLASA REPORT • ACOUSTIC MATERIALS • STUART ROSLYN • A-T MIC REVIEW • IBC
Inside and out, the new I-TECH HD is one of the most technologically advanced professional touring amplifiers on the market today. Building on the decades of innovation, invention, and insight Crown is known for, the I-TECH HD features five new patents – three on the power supply alone – giving you an amp that goes well beyond the expected. At the heart of the new I-TECH HD is the BSS OMNIDRIVEHD processing engine. Four times faster than its predecessor and featuring Linear Phase FIR filters and LevelMAX™ limiters, OMNIDRIVEHD provides unmatched clarity and sonically pure signal processing. All this, plus the versatility of System Architect software, combine to make the new I-TECH HD truly bad to the bone. Learn more at itechhd.com or call your local Crown representative.
ISSUE 33 October 2010
CONTENTS > IN THIS ISSSUE NEWS API AWARDS WINNERS • 4 Final results revealed
QSC MIXERS • 4 Greg Mackie joins up for mixer development
SELENIUM • 5 Harman acquires loudspeaker brand
AVID PA • 6 New range of PA speakers debuted
EVENTS PLASA • 15 All the hot news from this year’s big London show
IBC • 20 The full story from Europe’s big and busy Broadcast event.
LIVE SOUND/INSTALLATION PROSONIC • 23 Cologne, Germany loudspeaker manufacturer and wireless specialist, dBTechnologies celebrates its 10th Anniversary with a seminar day and party in a brand new show room.
A-T MIC REVIEW • 24 Alphabeat’s engineer, Ben Booker tries out Audio Technica’s ribbon mics in various applications on tour with the band.
STUDIO/BROADCAST COVER FEATURE SEAN RAMPTON • 26 Chase & Status’ FOH engineer talks about his many years on the road.
ACOUSTIC PRODUCTS • 32 A review of the latest in acoustic materials
STUART ROSLYN • 38 A chat with the busiest man in pro audio
> Regulars: Behind the Board 44 In Session 46 Products 48 People 51 Marketplace 52 Mixdown 58
his has been one hell of a busy month. In addition to cumulating the final results for the second annual Audio Pro Industry Excellence Awards (page 11), a trip to Cologne for dBTechnologies ProSonic Event (page 23) the day before the PLASA 2010 show (page 15) kept us quite busy. Especially when I arrived at Heathrow on the morning of the first day of PLASA and the Picadilly Line wasn’t running. Thanks TFL! I will leave the gory details of both events for you to read further on in the mag, but I will say that this industry has some great people and personalities. PLASA is always the best show for networking and catching up with old friends and making new ones. And the guys from dB were very welcoming and treated its visitors to classic German hospitality – and sausages. Aside from the shows and the mag, I mixed a few more live gigs this month. My favourite was at a small venue in London that only holds about 100 people. The ‘sound system’ comprised two monitors, one wedge and an eight-channel mixer, but it really made me appreciate the arduous role of the live sound engineer. Having come from a studio background, I always sneered at live sound guys, thinking that their job was merely an exercise in setting up a few mics and, from my experience gigging, being the biggest wanker at the venue. Trying to get a good vocal sound, however, over the very loud and fast bands made me appreciate the idea that real talent and a thorough knowledge of the gear is essential for proper live sound mixing. I take my hat off to the guys who have to use a new board in a new venue every night. Further to that, dealing with the many weather elements thrown into the mix during outdoor festivals is another added and frustrating effect. No matter how perfect your mix is, there is no plugin or outboad that can eq wind off a festival field. A truly thankless job that, when done correctly, can make a show brilliant.
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Audio Pro heralds 2010 award winners Experts and executives from across the industry cast their votes for the very best of the pro audio business THE INDUSTRY has spoken and the winners of 2010’s Audio Pro Industry Excellence Awards, sponsored by NAMM, have been revealed. A judging panel of over 120 industry experts and executives, including some of the most respected figures in the business, cast their votes for the best in the pro audio business. Winners included SSE Audio for the tremendous hard rock festival Download, which scooped Best Live Sound Event, while the award for Best
Sennhesier UK’s noble work at festivals and concerts around the country paid off when it was acknowledged as offering Best AfterSales Support. In the Studio & Broadcast Sound category, the inimitable Snap Studios was named Best New Studio by the judges, who also considered Rupert Neve Designs’ Portico II to be 2010’s Best New Studio Product. Ray Staff, the only mastering engineer to make the finalists, stormed away with Best
It gave Audio Pro great pleasure to present the Lifetime Achievement Award to Tony Andrews.
Live Sound Engineer went to the illustrious ‘Big’ Mick Hughes for his skills at FOH with Metallica. Another big winner in the Live & Installed Sound category was Optocore, which took the gong for Most Innovative Installation on account of the groundbreaking network solution it delivered for Cirque du Soleil’s Viva Elvis production. JoeCo, of Blackbox Recorder fame, proved to be the industry’s favourite new live sound company by some margin and
Studio Engineer, and the HHB customers among the judges were clearly a satisfied bunch, because the supplier walked away with Best AfterSales Support. The award for Best Broadcast Sound went to SIS, a clear winner for its sterling work in helping televise The Proms. It was perhaps the Lifetime Achievement Award that was the most anticipated of all and it gave Audio Pro great pleasure to be able to present this to the eminent loudspeaker designer and all-round audio genius
QSC to enter digital console market QSC HAS announced a partnership with Greg Mackie and Peter Watts (M&W Pro Audio) to create a series of digital audio mixing consoles. Design work on the products will be done by both M&W and QSC, while manufacturing, distribution, sales, marketing and technical support will be handled entirely by QSC. The first products are expected to be announced early next year. Mackie, who needs little introduction, had the idea to create a new line of digital consoles after leaving Mackie Designs in 2003. He recruited long-time friend and collaborator Peter Watts – who designed the Trident DiAn, the first digitally controlled console – in 2008. The pair then began looking for a partner to develop the mixers. “We needed a pro-audio partner with established sales,
marketing and distribution, and a solid reputation for quality and reliability – one that had the technical capabilities to develop advanced digital mixing consoles and the manufacturing knowhow to produce the products,” said Mackie. “I had a long-time personal friendship with John and Barry Andrews and knew I could trust QSC to be exactly the right partner.” “We are delighted to be working with Greg and Peter,” added Gerry Tschetter, QSC VP of marketing. Their passion for creating fine audio products mirrors our own. Our efforts to create value and performance on the ‘B-Chain’ (processing, power and loudspeaker) side have yielded a number of highly successful product lines. It’s great fun to be working on the ‘AChain’ (mixing) side as well.” > qscaudio.com
Tony Andrews of Funktion One. Andrews’ commitment to sonic accuracy and putting the crowd’s enjoyment first haven’t gone unnoticed and he was duly honoured for his tireless efforts in addressing paramount issues within the industry. Audio Pro International’s editor, Andrew Low, commented: “It has been really fantastic to see the enthusiasm generated by the second
Audio Pro Industry Excellence Awards. Our aim from the outset was to provide a true representation of our industry’s opinions and achievements and I think we’ve succeeded. Many thanks to all our readers for their submissions, to our judges for their votes and the heartiest of congratulations to all the winners.” For a full breakdown of all the winners, turn to page 11.
Major truss companies Prolyte and Litestructures announce merger
IF YOU CAN’T BEAT ‘EM: (L-R) Lee Brooks, Smeding and Prolyte’s Gurt Felten
LITESTRUCTURES AND Prolyte have merged. The amalgamated firm will trade as Prolyte Products Group. Litestructures’ Wakefield office will be run by MD Lee Brooks, who will benefit from a strengthened management team. The office will also be responsible for running a group-wide custom projects division. All bulk manufacturing will be handled by the group’s two European plants, and global distribution will be managed from the Prolyte HQ in Leek, Netherlands.
“The combined team effort within the group reflects the positive drive we have created by this merger, said Fokko Smeding the new group CEO.” Litestructures founder Adrian Brooks, now on the supervisory board of the new company, added: “I have long thought that future development in our industry would rely on the collaboration of the key players. Together, we are able to exploit opportunities that would not have been available to us separately.” > prolyte.com www.audioprointernational.com
Audio Pro Awards
PLASA 2010 review
First Neumann-branded monitor unveiled KH120 designed for use as a near-field reference monitor or as a rear loudspeaker in larger, multi-channel and surround-sound systems NEUMANN HAS unveiled the first studio monitor to carry its badge, the KH120, which has been developed in conjunction with the team responsible for the acclaimed Klein and Hummel reference monitors. The brand was incorporated by Neumann earlier this year. The KH120 is designed to be used as a near-field reference monitor, or as a rear loudspeaker in larger, multi-channel surround sound systems. It represents, said Neumann in a statement, “the latest in acoustic and electronic simulation and measurement technologies to ensure the most accurate sound reproduction possible.” The KH120 comes equipped with powerful analog amplifiers, which, Neumann claims, offer substantial headroom and fast transient response. It has a wide
Harman reveals new loudspeaker brand HARMAN PRESENTED its new loudspeaker brand, Selenium, to the European professional audio community at PLASA 2010. Following its acquisition of the Brazilian manufacturer Electronica Selenium, the brand is now part of Harman Professional’s Loudspeaker Group led by Mark Ureda, general manager and VP. “Being part of a global firm such as Harman allows Selenium to expand distribution in a measured, strategic and well-supported manner,” said Rodrigo Rihl Kniest, country manager, Harman Brazil. Founded in 1958 in the south of Brazil, Selenium manufactures products for the automotive and pro audio markets. For the latter, its products include a ribbon line array www.audioprointernational.com
system and 18-inch subwoofer delivering 1,000 Watts. Michael MacDonald, Harman Pro’s executive VP of marketing and sales, noted: “The decision to acquire Selenium made perfect sense from the first visit to its facilities. I am confident that Selenium will be a great success as part of Harman Pro. Looking forward to the Olympic Games and the World Cup, which will be held in Brazil, I am excited that Selenium will be a local flagship for Harman Professional. Harman has ambitious growth plans for the Brazilian market. The company has invested around US$100 million to expand its production capacity and establish a world-class R&D centre there. > seleniumloudspeakers.com
horizontal dispersion pattern allowing freedom of movement across the mixing console, while a narrow vertical dispersion reduces re ections off the mixing console. Non-parallel cabinet
for smooth off-axis response, forgiving of diverse acoustical environments. A powerful titanium fabric dome offers lowdistortion, high frequency reproduction and a composite
The KH120 represents the latest in acoustic and electronic simulation and ensures the most accurate sound reproduction possible. walls attenuate internal standing waves, while a one-piece front panel with no discontinuities reduces diffraction and helps flatten out the loudspeaker’s frequency response. Other features of the new monitor include the firm’s proprietary Elliptical Mathematically Modelled Dispersion (MMD) waveguide,
sandwich cone provides damping of break-up modes. Its aluminum cabinet is magnetically shielded and minimizes resonances with high levels of heat dissipation. An associated subwoofer, the Neumann KH 810, was also announced and extends the lowfrequency response to 18Hz. > neumann.com
Mitch Carey: 1966 to 2010
MITCH CAREY, marketing and communications director of Sonic Distribution and sE Electronics, died unexpectedly recently, from what is suspected to be blood poisoning. The cause of death is yet to be confirmed. He leaves behind his wife, Debs, and two sons, Dylan and Euan. Carey joined Sonic Distribution as an equal shareholder and director, alongside Phil Smith and James Ishmaev-Young, in 2004. The three, along with Siwei Zou, were also partners in sE, which has developed several popular studio microphones.
Carey is credited as being a creative inspiration for marketing, taking ideas generated by the team and turning them into reality, as well as helping to negotiate some of the key manufacturing partnerships. These included the collaboration with Rupert Neve Designs that led to the creation of the RNR1 ribbon microphone, which Carey brought to the market. His artwork, branding and the products he helped develop, such as the Reflexion Filter, have formed the face of one of the industry’s most recent brand success stories.
October 2010 5
Avid moves into PA sector Industry observers speculate over the possibility that a pro touring or installation range will follow AVID LAUNCHED its first range of PA equipment, the GSR series, at PLASA 2010. Though GSR is aimed primarily at the MI market, speculation on whether the firm will follow it up with a pro range has quickly arisen, no doubt due to Avid’s clout in the upper echelons of the industry. In Venue, the manufacturer already has an industry standard desk and to be able to supply the other parts of the sound reinforcement jigsaw would be in line with current trend within the live sound industry. Designed by the same engineering team behind the company’s studio reference monitor line, the GSR series includes ten and 12-inch fullrange loudspeaker cabinets and an 18-inch subwoofer for extended bass in larger venues. The 250-Watt GSR10 and 300Watt GSR12 are two-way active PA speakers and both feature neodymium magnets in the lowfrequency drivers, to reduce overall weight and ease transport and set-up.
The GSR18 500-Watt active subwoofer features four locking casters that make it easy for users to roll the sub into position. All three models are built with Class D amps, which provide sustained high-output levels with minimum distortion and low heat. Other features include four eq presets for multiple applications, and a variable low-frequency crossover functionality in the GSR18 that enables customers to tune the subwoofer for use with GSR10 and GSR12 loudspeakers, or any other full-range loudspeaker. “We are very excited about the possibilities this new speaker series will bring to those working in small to mid-sized venues,” said Tanguy Leborgne, VP of creative enthusiasts at Avid. “We’ve applied our speaker design expertise to build a versatile sound reinforcement speaker series that offers a level of sound quality typically only available in higherpriced options.” > avid.com
Reproduced Sound to focus on performing arts venues THE ORGANISERs of the Reproduced Sound 2010 conference have announced that the theme for this year’s show is entitled Performing Arts Venues: Balancing the Design. Held at the Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff, on November 18th, the two-day conference is organised by the Institute of Acoustics for consultants, manufacturers, contractors and end users. Jonathan Adams, architect of the Wales Millennium Centre, will present a keynote paper. He will speak on what it takes to bring the various specialisms of acoustics, theatre, sound, lighting and so on, into the architecture of a venue of this size. He will also conduct guided tours of the centre to talk further and in more detail about its architecture and function. Other highlights of the conference include a presentation of the Peter Barnett Memorial Award to distinguished American acoustician Dr Leo Beranek in recognition of his ‘enormous contribution to the field of 6
audioPRO October 2010
electroacoustics, especially in relation to loudspeakers intelligibility and signal processing’. Martyn Ware, co-founder of the Illustrious Company, will demonstrate pieces resulting from a collaboration with Goldsmiths College, London and Duran Audio of Cardiff, on a large scale immersive audio experiment. Ware, formerly with the Human League and Heaven 17, formed the Illustrious Company in 2001 with exYazoo and Erasure star Vince Clarke, to create new forms of spatialised sound composition using their unique three dimensional 3D AudioScape surround-sound system. Paul Malpas, chairman of the Institute of Acoustics’ electroacoustics group, said: “Reproduced Sound has firmly established itself as a ‘must attend’ event for many people from a wide background in acoustics and audio sectors – and this year’s conference promises to be one of the best yet.” > reproducedsound.co.uk
Allen & Heath increases focus on recording
ALLEN & HEATH has unveiled the GS-R24, a high quality analog console designed primarily for recording applications. It’s the first of its kind to be built by the firm since the GS3000 in the 1990s. Based on the Zed-R16 Firewire concept with influences from the GS3000, the GS-R24 is aimed at project studios, but its feature set also lends it to post production suites and live applications requiring multi-channel recording. It can be combined with a choice of interface modules, motorised faders and MIDI controllers for interfacing with DAWs.
“Following in the footsteps of the Zed-R16, the GS-R24 takes the concept of mixer/DAW integration to the next level,” explained Allen & Heath designer, Mike Griffin. “It is unusual to find this level of high quality analogue pre-amp, eq and mixdown circuitry combined with DAW interface and controller all in one product.” The GS-R24 will be made available in December this year at a suggested UK retail price of £4,999 plus VAT for the standard model, or £5,599 plus VAT for the motorised fader version. > allen-heath.co.uk www.audioprointernational.com
Channel 69 to Channel 38
Wireless microphones and in-ear monitors the transition ...
Channel 69 854 to 862 MHZ Channel 38 606 to 614 MHz
Sennheiser Channel 38 Equipment Options G3 Series
G3 Series - Range GB - 606 to 648 MHz
2000 Series - Range GW 558 to 626 MHz
3000/5000 Series - Range L - 168 MHz tuning bandwidth - 470 to 638 MHz - EM3732 II, SK5212 II and SKM5200 II
Ofcom has announced a funding package to assist eligible users with the transition. To ďŹ nd out if you qualify go to www.pmsefunding.co.uk N.B. Any wireless systems operating in Channel 38 in the UK require a licence. Licences can be obtained from JFMG Ltd. www.jfmg.co.uk 0207 299 8660 Sennheiser UK are a proud sponsor of BEIRG - the British Entertainment Industry Radio Group - working for continued access to sufďŹ cient quantity and quality of spectrum for our industry. www.sennheiser.co.uk
IN ASSOCIATION WITH
> THIS MONTH IN BROADCAST
Red-TX helps heroes Broadcast sound specialist captures the audio for injured soldiers benefit concert at Twickenham
PAINTING THE TRUCK RED: The Red-TX team relaxes after a successful concert
RED-TX handled the audio feed for the BBC broadcast of the Help for Heroes benefit concert at Twickenham recently. The live event attracted more than 60,000 people, including some of the injured service personnel who benefit from the money raised by the charity. A star-studded cast of performers came together for the concert, billed as the biggest live event of the year. Robbie Williams and Gary Barlow headlined, supported by some of the biggest names in the music industry, including Pixie Lott and Plan B. Red-TX was commissioned to handle the audio by Chris Bretnall, head of Creative Broadcast Solutions who was made technical director by BBC Events. “The delivery by everyone at Red-TX was faultless,” Bretnall said. “This was a massive undertaking, at relatively short notice, over a period when both people and resources were already heavily committed. Plans for the broadcast of the event and the ancillary processes that were needed for the live TX were still
maturing on the morning of the gig itself. Despite that, the Red-TX crew kept all the tracks in place and delivered very high quality sound.” Renowned live sound engineer and Red-TX director Tim Summerhayes manned the desk onboard the main music truck, while co-director Conrad Fletcher, aboard the BBC OB vehicle, handled audio inputs from comedians, presenters and Summerhayes’ mix. The first four and a half hours of the event were edited down to one and a half hours of programming. The broadcast went live for the final half hour when Williams and Barlow were on stage. Red-TX director Ian Dyckhoff said: “It was a complicated event because we were feeding chunks of audio to the edit suite where it was being cut with footage of war veterans who are benefiting from the money raised by Help For Heroes. We had a great team of people, however, and lots of help from other contractors, including Britannia Row. > red-tx.com
Visions OB updates with RTS
Riedel scoops IBC Innovation Award
VISIONS OB, the UK’s largest independent outside broadcast facilities provider has updated its impressive fleet of OB vehicles with equipment from RTS/Telex, in particular the company’s Tribus and Cronus systems. Visions provides broadcasting services to most of the UK’s major sporting, cultural, corporate and social events. Paul Fournier, head of sound at the firm, explained: “We have been relying since the late 1990s on equipment from RTS/Telex. In fact, all our OB vans and flypacks are built around digital matrices from RTS/Telex starting with Zeus and continuing on to multi-truck Adam systems with fibre-linked Tribus cards. These systems have proved themselves in countless productions over the years.
RIEDEL HAS won an IBC Innovation Award at this year's IBC show in Amsterdam, for its work with the Red Bull Air Race. The judging panel gave the Content Creation Award to Red Bull Air Race for its use of fibre-based distribution of all communications, HD video and audio content, via Riedel’s MediorNet. Also involved in the large-scale project were broadcast production provider SIVision OB and West4Media. The Red Bull Air Race World Championship is a unique visual
“The overwhelming majority of freelance sound engineers are fully familiar with RTS/Telex,” he continued. “They can all program the systems without any problems. That makes our job considerably easier.” The new systems will be used in the broadcasting of sporting events, music festivals and much more. Visions’ fleet of outside broadcast vehicles includes 15 trucks and offers infrastructure for all broadcasting tasks. It includes HD, SD, VT trucks and modular flypack systems. “Even in far flung corners of the world, we can set up a complete OB production unit, an international broadcast centre or a master control room, each capable of delivering studio quality.” > rtsintercoms.com
spectacle set in some of the world’s biggest cities. The sport has quickly built a huge following, with millions watching the action on televisions around the globe. “The Red Bull Air Race is one of our most prestigious and technologically advanced projects. We are proud to be recognised by the IBC for our work. I would like to thank the IBC and everyone in the team for his effort to make this project happen,” said Thomas Riedel, MD Riedel Communications. > riedel.com
October 2010 9
ANAHEIM CONVENTION CENTER
JANUARY THIRTEEN THRU SIXTEEN 2011
>>> AUDIO PRO AWARDS
And the winners are… The industry has spoken and the winners of this year’s Audio Pro Industry Excellence Awards have finally been revealed. Here are the people, the projects and the products that you considered the best of 2010... THE JUDGES’ votes have been counted and verified and we can now announce the deserving winners of the second annual Audio Pro Industry Excellence Awards. Go down to the box below for a full breakdown of the winners and what they were acknowledged for. As in 2009, this year’s Industry Excellence Awards was a virtual ceremony, so in place of a formal event, each stage of the process was covered through the pages of Audio Pro and online at www.audioprointernational.com. The awards were subject to a transparent, voluntary voting procedure and, after consultation with the industry, the Audio Pro
International team picked five finalists per category; industry-wide voting then decided who the 15 worthy winners shoudl be.
Betty Heywood, NAMM’s director of international affairs commented: “NAMM congratulates the winners of the 2010 Audio Pro Industry
NAMM congratulates the winners of the 2010 Audio Pro Industry Excellence Awards, with special recognition to Tony Andrews. Betty Heywood Director of international affairs, NAMM
This year’s awards were sponsored by National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM), the globally renowned trade association, best known for its annual winter show.
Excellence Awards, with special recognition to Tony Andrews for his pioneering work in the world of speaker technology,” she said. “We are pleased to support these awards,
which celebrate the best in pro audio innovation. Each year, the pro audio community gathers at the NAMM Show to see the latest live sound and recording equipment from around the world and NAMM is proud to provide this amazing and creative group of leaders in this important industry segment with a supportive business environment.” Everyone at Audio Pro International would like to extend our most heartfelt congratulations to the 15 winners and to thank everyone who participated in either the nominations or voting. We think the awards are a true reflection of the pro audio industry’s finest moments of the last 12 months.
October 2010 11
>>> AUDIO PRO AWARDS
LIVE & INSTALLED BEST LIVE SOUND EVENT DOWNLOAD FESTIVAL: SSE AUDIO SSE again provided its highly acclaimed L-Acoustics K1 system for the hugely popular hard rock show in June this year at Donington Park, UK. The festival welcomed acts such as AC/DC and Them Crooked Vultures.
BEST NEW LIVE SOUND PRODUCT SOUNDCRAFT VI1 The Vi1 is a new addition to the Vi series of live sound consoles. Despite being smaller and lower-priced, it offers the same sound quality and many features of the bigger Vi desks, including Vistonics interface, Fader Glow, Lexicon effects engines, BSS Audio graphic eqs on all output busses and integral dynamics on all channels. BEST LIVE SOUND ENGINEER ‘BIG’ MICK HUGHES Hughes is a widely acclaimed British sound engineer who has mixed Metallica at every one of the more than 1,500 shows they have performed since their November 1984 tour of Europe. His skills at FOH are often praised by his fellow engineers. BEST NEW INSTALLATION PRODUCT FULL FAT AUDIO F60Q The F60Q four-channel Class D amplifier is manufactured for Funktion One by FFA in England. It delivers 1,500W per channel into four Ohms and is considered ‘sonically excellent’ by Funktion One and a number of installers.
STUDIO & BROADCAST BEST NEW STUDIO PRODUCT NEVE PORTICO II CHANNEL: RUPERT NEVE DESIGNS The Portico II is a self-powered 2U channel strip module featuring a mic preamplifier, four-band eq, compressor/limiter, ‘texture’ control and level metering. It has become one of the most popular pieces of studio outboard.
BEST STUDIO ENGINEER RAY STAFF Staff is a highly regarded mastering engineer known for work with an impressive list of seminal artists, such as The Clash and Black Sabbath and more recently for Muse and Corinne Bailey Rae. He was the only mastering engineer to make the finals in this category.
BEST NEW COMPANY THE MIC STORE The Mic Store is a new online retailer, dedicated to microphones, that aims to simplify the process of choosing the correct mic. It has expert advisors on hand to discuss all manner of miking requirements with customers.
BEST BROADCAST SOUND THE PROMS: SIS LIVE SIS Live provides the television coverage for the BBC Proms, which enjoyed a record-breaking season last year when more than 12 million viewers watched the shows. This year the firm covered more than 25 concerts, including the First and Last Night of the Proms.
MOST INNOVATIVE INSTALLATION CIRQUE DE SOLEIL’S VIVA ELVIS AT ARIA RESORT & CASINO: OPTOCORE Optocore designed and installed its largest single ring network so far for Cirque du Soleil’s Viva Elvis production in Las Vegas. At the request of Cirque du Soleil, Optocore enhanced the system to provide for multiple clients in a server-based topology, to meet the needs of the production. BEST NEW COMPANY JOE CO With its first product, the Blackbox Recorder, Joe Co has revolutionised live music recording with a multi-track hard disk recorder that plugs into any standard live mixing console via the normal insert points.
BEST AFTER-SALES SUPPORT SENNHEISER UK Sennhesier UK has worked tirelessly at concerts and festivals around Britain in recent times, providing complementary support and backup of all descriptions for Sennhesier products, customers and artists.
BEST NEW STUDIO SNAP North London’s inimitable Snap Studios opened recently with a very rare 1972 Neve 5316 console, along with lots more highly coveted pieces of gear, both vintage and modern. It has already been very well received by those who have worked there.
BEST AFTER-SALES SUPPORT HHB HHB has become Europe's leading supplier of professional audio technology, particularly among the broadcast community. It is also a leader in the development and production of digital recording products.
MOST ORIGINAL STUDIO INITIATIVE THE PREMISES: SOLAR POWERED STUDIO The Premises in Hoxton, London, runs Europe’s first fully solar-powered recording studio, created with the help of the Centre for Sustainable Energy and with acoustic design by Roger D’Arcy. Construction used a large amount of recycled materials and all equipment (including air conditioning) operates on low power levels.
What they had to say... “We're touched and honoured that Snap has been recognised by our peers. We set out to create a home for audio excellence and the response to date from our growing, loyal client base confirms that we succeeded. More than anything else it's a gas to hear so much great music blaring from the monitors. Thanks, everyone. See you soon.” Mark Thompson, owner, Snap Studios “When I heard that we had won an Audio Pro Industry Excellence Award for the Viva Elvis show in Las Vegas, I was delighted and really proud. It is such a great installation and reflects what Optocore products are made for and the superb performance our system delivers. We really appreciate this high profile award and I will for sure find a special place for it on my desk.” Tine Helmle, director of sales and marketing, Optocore “I have been extremely busy since I joined Air Studios 18 months ago and I am delighted to receive this award which was totally unexpected. It is great to get this recognition from your readers and professionals within the industry. Ray Staff, mastering engineer
THE AUDIO PRO LIFETIME ACHEIVEMENT AWARD TONY ANDREWS As the founder of Turbosound and Funktion One, Andrews has designed groundbreaking loudspeaker systems such as Floodlight, Flashlight and Resolution with the principal motivation of sonic accuracy and through a technical approach that avoids the use of both system eq and compression driver midrange. He is highly regarded among his peers and has been praised for championing the importance of factors such as transient response.
“Download represented a major challenge for us this year, integrating our PA with a second stage and PA system for AC/DC on the first day, which required stripping out some delays and reconfiguring the whole system overnight, ready for the ‘conventional’ show days. The project was a team effort between Miles Hillyard, Dan Bennett and Pete Russell, who designed and redesigned to get the result that all the parties concerned, including AC/DC, the noise police and the
production team were happy with. The ultimate result was stunning and drew great comments from all quarters. Spencer Beard, SSE operations director supervised the overall effort and ensured all the equipment was in the right place at the right time. John Penn, MD, SSE Audio “SIS Live is proud to have worked with BBC Classical Music Television again to provide the outside broadcast facilities for the 2010 BBC Proms. We were delighted to discover we had won the Best Broadcast Sound award and would like to thank Audio Pro International readers for voting for us. This award is testament to the hard work and commitment that the team puts into the planning and delivery of each event across the Proms season. David Meynell, managing director, SIS Live “Thanks to all the people who voted for me. It is an honour to receive the Best Live Sound Engineer Award. I do my best to make every show sound good for the benefit of the band and the fans, and this award makes the long tours and challenging venues all worthwhile.” Mick Hughes, live sound engineer “Ever since Edison invented the tin foil phonograph, the recording industry has been driven by innovation. Okay, we can't claim to have invented solar energy but we're pleased to be the first in Europe to run a recording studio on it. Many thanks to Audio Pro International readers for recognising that you can now record professionally and be carbon neutral at the same time.” Viv Broughton, CEO, The Premises Studios
October 2010 13
Now available from the JHS Pro Audio Division.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT YOUR JHS PRO AUDIO ASM OR OUR SALES OFFICE ON: 0113 2866 411
PLASA EVENT REVIEW < Earls Court, London September 12th-15th
FACT FILE Venue: Earls Court Convention Centre, London Date: September 12th to 15th Visitors: Over 12,000 (pre audit) Verdict: Visitor numbers were up from 2009, with an increase in international visitors. Pro audio exhbitors feel that PLASA is the place for new products launches.
Launch pad London PLASA 2010 brought some exciting new product innovations to the European pro audio community. Andrew Low took the tube to London’s Earls Court to bring you this in-depth report… LASA never fails to serve loads of tasty new racks, desks, mics and black boxes to the pro audio table. It also functions as a catalyst to bring the pro audio community together in a manageable social format in a manner that other, bigger shows cannot. David Webster, marketing director at Digico, says it best: “PLASA is like a family: everybody comes together and it's big but not overwhelming – and that's what makes everybody want to come.” The organisers are pleased with the results, stating that preliminary figures show growth from the 2009 show with over 12,000 visitors in attendance. The figures also show that the international presence was substantial, as nearly 30
per cent of the visitors were from 99 countries worldwide. Show director Nicola Rowland says: "The universally positive feedback and the strong visitor figures would be satisfying under any circumstances, but
The swathes of new gear unveiled at the Earls Court show was enough to overload the pages of our website, confirming that exhibitors feel that PLASA is one of the best places to debut their latest innovations.
PLASA is like a family: everybody comes together and it's big but not overwhelming – and that's what makes everybody want to come. David Webster - Digico
in the current economic climate it's a strong result for our exhibitors and, for the show itself, it underlines just how important PLASA remains in the international events calendar.
KLOTZ Klotz debuted the PCF1825C mains multicore cable for stage lighting. It also showed the new HC51P15 and HC52P15 hybrid cables for computer-
controlled components and the Quad DI-Box DI44, a multi-functional fourfold DI box with balancing and sub-stagebox functionality with full DI options. "Despite the gloomy economic situation and a decline in the number of exhibitors, PLASA 2010 was a highly worthwhile event for us,” says Grant Roomes, Klotz’ regional sales manager. “We were happy to note a dramatic increase in the number of visitors to our stand from the UK and Ireland, almost all of whom were decision-makers and top management executives. This was clear proof that our product portfolio is meeting a growing demand for special cables and system solutions." > klotz-ais.com
October 2010 15
> EVENT REVIEW PLASA Earls Court, London September 12th-15th FUNKTION ONE Funktion One demonstrated a stereo pair of the most recent version of its Dance Stack as configured for the Beatport installation at Coloarado’s Club Beta. The configuration (two F221s, two DS15 and a DS210) employs the recently introduced 21inch bass, which reproduces both high and low bass frequencies, meaning it covers the same bass range as the original mix of infrabass 218 and F218. The MB210 LP, Funktion One’s most compact bass enclosures, was also on show. Designed to augment the F81 and F101 loudspeakers, MB210 consists of two ten-inch neodymium loudspeakers driving a ported resonant chamber enclosure. It handles 600W and averages 104dB sensitivity between 60Hz and 160Hz. There is also a self-powered version available (MB210 LPA) and a self-powered version of the MB112 single 12-inch bass was also introduced. > funktion-one.com
RED SQUARE AUDIO “We had a really good show and the feedback from clients both old and new was extremely positive,” says RSA owner Paul Nicholsen. “Innovason launched Nova 2, which is brimful of new features, including the new remote SR-16 stagebox and Neumann Solution D digital microphone control. APG made its UK debut showing everything from the six-inch MX1 coaxial to the revolutionary DX and SMX ranges, plus the Uniline line array.” > redsquareaudio.co.uk
ALLEN & HEATH Allen & Heath added the xDR-16 expander unit to the iLive digital mixing family, providing remote analog I/O expansion and networking options at FOH, on the other side of a large stage, in another room, or in a different building during installations. It also unveiled the GS-R24, a new analog console combined with a choice of interface modules, motorised faders for automated mixing, and MIDI controllers for tactile interfacing with software DAWs. Finally, Allen & Heath debuted a Dante networking audio interface card for the iLive digital mixing series at Earls Court. > allen-heath.co.uk
TRANTEC “We’ve had loads of good input and feedback regarding our ‘rack and ready’ S5 series and channel 38 products,” explains Mark Parkhouse, head of sales and marketing expands on the show’s success for Trantec. “We were ahead of the game here, making us very well positioned to provide advice for our customers looking to future-proof their wireless systems. We’re also very pleased with the Ofcom funding announcement. This year’s show brought an increase in visitors and the quality of leads obtained so far is excellent. We also benefiting from exhibiting with TOA Europe.” > trantec.co.uk
FBT “PLASA was quite positive, and better than last year, in our opinion,” says FBT’s export manager Roberto Mataloni. “Several clients from the UK, dealers, rental companies, system integrators and installers visited our stand and met with us and with our UK distributor, Proel. “We exhibited a wide range of our production, including the new ProMaxx and Mitus sound reinforcement series. Great attention and interest have been given to the ProMaxx 14a, a powerful and portable system, active, with eight on board presets and an exclusive and innovative 14-inch neodymium woofer, created in collaboration with B&C. “Another star has been the Mitus 206LA powered, compact line array, with loads of features and unique in design, flying and locking hardware, outer polypropylene mould.” > fbt.uk.com
SAMSON Samson focused on the new Airline Micro wireless earset system, its smallest wireless system, which couples small, high-quality audio components with the latest lithium ion battery technology. Samson’s Expedition series of portable PA solutions, which features the flagship XP510i, was also displayed in addition to the new Auro D412 and D415 two-way active loud speakers. Rob Castle, MD of Korg UK, comments: "The show was very positive for us at Korg and thanks to everyone who called in to see us at the show. The new Samson products created a lot of interest as well as people looking afresh at the whole Samson range." > korg.co.uk
ADAM HALL Adam Hall UK had a larger presence at this year’s show. “PLASA 2010 seems to be just as fruitful as previous years, with a steady stream of visitors from across Europe,” says general
PLASA EVENT REVIEW < Earls Court, London September 12th-15th manager Andrew Richardson. “The event has given us a great chance to promote some existing relationships and also start some new ones. Only time will tell if this has been truly successful, but early signs are encouraging. Strong interest for LD Premium products, Audac, the Eminence Flux Density Modulator and the show favourite, the Dave 12G2.” > adamhall.co.uk
JOE CO PLASA was a huge success for Joe Co according to its MD, Joe Bull. “PLASA is a great opportunity to meet new customers and distributors, as well as a chance to meet existing users and show them new products such as the digital I/O versions of the Blackbox recorder and to preview the Blackbox player,” Bull states. “We were impressed with the amount of show traffic we saw over the four days, which clearly indicates that PLASA is an event valued by audio industry professionals." > joeco.co.uk
DIGICO “Our new products, the Little Red Box, Little Blue Box and SD Rack, created a lot of interest from existing users who attended and also got a lot of attention from those who aren't already part of the Digico family, which meant the show was a great success for us,” comments David Webster, the marketing director at Digico. > digico.biz
ROLAND SYSTEMS GROUP RSG highlighted its pro audio portfolio alongside the Edirol video products, including the new M-300, 32-channel digital audio mixer, S-MADI (REACMADI bridge), V-1600HD multi-format video mixer/switcher plus professional audio and video field recorders, presenters and processors. Simon Lowther, general manager at Roland Systems Engineering, explains: "We have a lot of staff and customers coming from around the world and it's great to get them all together. “It has been a great year for us and the show’s been great, so we’re happy. Our market is quite diverse and PLASA brings in lots of people from the theatre, installation and live events markets, plus a lot of end users – and they’re all coming here to see the equipment." > rolandsg.co.uk
MC2/XTA Bill Wood, group sales and marketing director for MC2 and XTA, comments: “I would say PLASA 2010 has been the best for years. Sharing space with our UK distributor, Polar Audio, continues to work brilliantly for us. “We had a fabulous reaction to the DP548 and the iCore release from XTA, as well as the E100 from MC2 Audio. We also had huge interest from the home-based visitors and were able to do very good quality demonstrations to a very receptive audience.” > mc2-audio.co.uk
RCF “We felt that it was important that we were here,” notes Phil Price, UK director of sales at RCF. “We've been working with a range of consultants and system integrators on potential projects that if they come to fruition will have made this a genuinely worthwhile event.” > rcf.it
TC GROUP Tannoy teamed up with sister audio brands Lab.gruppen, Lake and TC Electronic to jointly exhibit at this year’s show. Tannoy showed its fixed installation and live sound products including the flagship VQ series (incorporating the latest developments in its ‘tour ready’ VQ Live guise) and smaller footprint, compact V-series range of point-source loudspeakers. Lab.gruppen featured its C series range of installation-dedicated power amplifiers, the FP+ series and the new PLM 20000Q four-channel powered loudspeaker management system (featuring onboard Lake processing and 5K per channel output).
The new System 6000 mk2 from TC Electronic was also featured. The 6000 mk2 is said to ‘bring the almost ubiquitous industry-standard system 6000 mastering and reverb DSP platform bang up to date for the 21st century with cutting edge features and powerful new capabilities”. > tcelectronic.com
JHS The appointment of John Hornby Skewes as a sub-distributor of Tannoy’s VQ Live touring PA system was released before PLASA. The company was able to talk to visitors about the joint venture with TC, while displaying new gear from its other distributed pro audio brands, HK Audio, Allen & Heath and LA Audio. Among this was the Elements PA system, a new compact PA that can be configured for use as from a small conference PA to a full band stage rig. It features an integrated, cable-free internal E-Connect coupler for quick set up and versatility. > jhs.co.uk
DYNACORD Dynacord launched the Powermate 3 at the show. This new addition to its powered mixer offers an expanded busstructure and other new features, despite considerable reductions in weight, size and power consumption. The latest incarnation is equipped with a professional mixing surface optimised for live performance, with a choice of ten, 16 or 22 channel strips. Features include vocal voicing filters, six aux busses, low-noise microphone preamplifiers, low cut filters and 11band graphic equalisers. Its USB 2.0
audio interface offers simple live recording, playback and interval music. > dynacord.de
APEX Belgium-based Apex Audio launched the new Intelli-X series of audio system management devices on Red Square Audio's booth. The two new units – the Intelli-X 26 and 48 – feature internal processing up to 192kHz as standard, high-end studio-grade analog circuit designs and mastering-grade compressors. This new series builds on the success of the original Intelli-series and SL series by providing full control of processor parameters via an intuitive front panel design and the Apex Intelli-Ware software control platform. > apex-audio.be
ALCONS Alcons MD, Tom Back, reports that its new range of subwoofers drew live sound engineers to his stand. The new subs features the high output BQ211 quarter-wave loaded, all-carbon 21inch subwoofer and the BC543 triple, all-carbon-coned triple 18-inch in bass-reflex configuration: a self-contained cardioid subwoofer or: with cardioid controllable dispersion pattern. Visitors were also introduced to the new LR24 mid-sized pro-ribbon line-array touring system. > alconsaudio.com
AVID Avid displayed the latest products in the Venue live digital mixing range, including the new MADI option card. The new card is designed to simplify
October 2010 17
> EVENT REVIEW PLASA Earls Court, London September 12th-15th integration of Venue into any existing MADI environment, using the MADI protocol to allow users to send and receive up to 64 channels of audio between a Venue system and numerous MADI-compatible devices – including routers, other digital mixing consoles and mobile recording set-ups, thereby nullifying the need for any further patchbays or the like. A full report on Venue’s newfound interactivity will be featured in API’s November issue.
OHM A ground stack version of the Ersa Major line array system and the newly developed class D amplifier modules were shown in conjunction with the Pukk 218, 215 and 212 subs. Its new series of Saturn full range cabinets, coaxial stage monitors and a range of DSP controllers with a software platform common to all future Ohm digital products. > ohm.co.uk
SENNHEISER Sennheiser UK celebrated its 20th year as a subsidiary of its German parent, while highlighting solutions for the move from Channel 69 (845 to 862MHz) to Channel 38 (606 to 614MHz) and the launch of G3 GB. A selection of Sennheiser and Neumann mics – including its Evolution wired mics and the new Mk 4 large diaphragm studio condenser studio mics – were highlighted. Sennheiser’s Wi Cos wireless conference system and the ADN system were featured, in addition to a range of products from its distributed brands, which include A Part Audio, DAS Audio, K-Array and Rane. >sennheiser.co.uk
HARMAN Harman Professional introduced the latest version of its HiQnet system architect software, version 2.2, featuring new system design features and detailed venue monitoring. Soundcraft debuted the new Si compact console to its line of digital live sound consoles. The new board incorporates the same DSP functionality found in the other Si boards (Emma Lite) and accepts up to 40 inputs to mix in three frame sizes – 16, 24 or 32 mono inputs and four stereo channels to mix – the smallest of which is also rack-mountable. “It was the busiest PLASA show I have seen for many years, there seemed to be a huge interest in digital consoles, and the fact that so many companies
were actively looking to invest in gear shows the industry is in a healthy state,” says Andy Brown, Studer Soundcraft’s head of digital console strategy. “We had a really good and busy show at the Harman booth, with many customers discussing new product purchases, and in particular the Soundcraft consoles,” adds director of marketing communications, Dave Neal AKG introduced the new Perception wireless microphone system, which features 30MHz bandwidth, a sports headset C 544 and a pro XLR output. LOUD TECH EAW introduced new additions the KF, KFNT, JF and JFNT series loudspeakers. Both the KFNT and JFNT models integrate 1,500W of amplification, EAW Focusing processing, software-accessible DSP and the proprietary U-Net network. Martin Audio debuted its new Multicellular loudspeaker array touring system (see page 49). Mackie displayed new additions to its line of HD high definition powered loudspeakers with the HDA arrayable loudspeaker system, plus the ultracompact HD1221 and two new HD powered subwoofers. The VLZ3 fourbus mixers with built-in FX, compression and four-track recording via USB were on display alongside the new Onyx Blackbird and Blackjack audio recording interfaces. RIEDEL Riedel revealed the new Rocknet RN.345.IL expansion card for Allen & Heath’s iLive digital mixing system. The RN.345.IL allows the respective Allen & Heath product to become a part of a Rocknet digital audio network and enables remote control of any Rocknet microphone preamplifier. It fits into the mixing console’s card expansion slot and gives access to 64 input and 64 output channels. A rotary switch is provided for device identification and selection of up to 15 programmable routing tables. > riedel.net
NEUTRIK Neutrik’s DIWA (digital wireless audio), which operates at the five gigahertz frequency band with no approval processes, data compression, and three milliseconds latency was on show. Xirium is the first product based
on the DIWA technology and combines digital receiving and sending lines in one system. The NA2JJ plug adapter was also highlighted. POLAR AUDIO In addition to new product announcements from Dyancord, MC2 and XTA, Renkus Heinz launched the IC2 and Modular point source array on Polar’s booth. The IC2 combines the Iconyx digitally steerable technology with the benefits of a point source loudspeaker. Listed as the creating the world’s first ‘crossover array’, it features four eightinch low frequency neodymium transducers and one-inch titanium nitride coated HF drivers, while individual steering control of each driver provides vertical pattern control for maximum intelligibility by delivering up to four beams, even in reverberant spaces. The Modular point source array series, which initially comprises the self-powered CF101-LA and nonpowered CFX101-LA systems, can be flown, ground-stacked or polemounted. Up to four CF/CFX101-LA cabinets can be arrayed to provide a 90 by 60-degree coverage pattern, delivering up to nine dB more output and tighter vertical pattern control than a conventional single cabinet. > polaraudio.co.uk
LINE 6 Line 6 showed the XD-V30 and XDV70 handheld wireless mic systems, and XD-V30L and XD-V70L lavalier wireless systems. “Since its release, Line 6 digital wireless technology has received nearly unanimous praise for its unmatched performance, simplicity and sound,” remarks Simon Jones, VP of new market development at Line 6. “PLASA is the perfect venue to bring its advanced technology and simple user experience to audio installation companies, rental companies, production companies, and dealers.” > line6.com www.audioprointernational.com
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> EVENT REVIEW IBC Amsterdam RAI September 10th to 14th
FACT FILE Venue: Amsterdam RAI Date: Sept 10th - 14th Exhibitors: 1,300 Visitors: 48,521 Verdict: By all accounts the foremost event for those in the broadcast industry these days, IBC shows no sign of slowing down – and it isn’t likely to, either, if the market continues to flourish as it has done in recent times.
Technology and growth This year the booming IBC show was once again a fair reflection of a broadcast industry that just keeps growing. Rob Hughes reports big figures and a vibrant showcase… aking the decision to attend PLASA rather than IBC this year turned out to be a little like switching queues in the supermarket, only to watch the line that you abandoned pick up speed faster than Dwain Chambers evading a drug test. Allowing the unwieldy ‘IBC 2010’ subfolder room to grow this month demanded some ruthless
figure represents visitors and exhibitors combined – the continued appreciation of the industry resulted in an increased demand for exhibition space this year, with more than 1,300 companies vying for space on the show floor. A 13th hall had to be added just a few months before the event to accommodate all who wanted to be present.
One of our biggest challenges is reflecting the way the industry is changing. Michael Crimp IBC CEO
deleting of emails – even an invitation to masquerade as a Nigerian lord in return for untold millions was forsaken. And grow it did, by an average of ten press releases a day, while its PLASA equivalent began to look a little malnourished, like some sort of sickly e-child. But the upshot of this is that, while I swapped the vastness of the RAI for the, ahem, splendour of Earls Court, there’s no shortage of news to report from what is one of the most important shows for audio, not to mention broadcast in general. The 2010 event proved to be the second biggest IBC in history, with a total attendance of 48,521, an increase of 8.7 per cent on 2009. This 20
“The rise in attendance this year suggests strongly that IBC’s developments are delivering what the industry requires from its annual global meeting place,” said IBC CEO, Michael Crimp. “One of our biggest challenges is in reflecting the way that the industry is changing, with much more focus on strategic decisions about technology and growth. With decision-making moving upwards within an organisation, IBC has to be relevant to CEOs who previously might not have had it on their radar. But what is most encouraging is that, while our development programme is still a work in progress, CEO level staff are already well represented within the IBC audience.”
Like any self-respecting collection of trade-show press releases, my IBC email subfolder bore witness to a throng of unveilings. While many of them concerned new-fangled camera gadgetry that I couldn’t begin to explain, an encouraging number were from good old audio companies such as DPA, which revealed new additions to its 4099 clip mic range and HHB, which introduced Røde miniature microphones, along with a number of new Wohler products, including the AMP2-16V Series modular audio/video processing monitor. Upgraded wireless systems in Audio-Technica’s 2000 and 3000 Series also made their debut, as did Sennheiser’s SKM 5200-II handheld transmitter, with its switching bandwidth of up to 184MHz. But the big audio news at the show was the obvious proliferation of audio over IP. Ravenna, a new open, realtime distribution technology, was revealed by Lawo associate company ALC NetworX at the show. It is designed to facilitate the passing of
signals between broadcast centres, OB trucks and for linking facilities over WAN connections. Also taking the IP route was Barix with the Exstreamer 50, a professional audio over IP device designed to ease the delivery of programme audio between studios and transmission points. The IBC2010 conference offered a fascinating mix of sessions on new technology, content creation and business. Keynote speakers ranged from Sir Michael Lyons, chairman of the BBC Trust to Kent Novak, senior VP at Texas Instruments. IBC traditionally devotes a day to digital cinema and stereographic 3D, but this year added a second theme day covering sports, with a keynote from Manolo Romero, managing director of Olympic Broadcasting Services. Joop Janssen, CEO of the Vitec Group, concluded: “IBC 2010 has been fantastic for us. We definitely see the market being up from last year: there is more life in the broadcast market in general.” > ibc.org
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PROSONIC LIVE SOUND <
Audio cologne dB Technologies’ annual Prosonic event had an added agenda this year, a tenth Anniversery Party and a brand new show room. Andrew Low reports… erman loudspeaker manufacturer and wireless technology specialist dB Technologies opened its doors to its worldwide dealer network this month, to celebrate the company’s tenth anniversary in a brand new 500 squaremetre showroom in Cologne. Held the day before PLASA, the itinerary for the event included a riverboat trip on the Rhine and the Prosonic event, which included an education and discussion forum, followed by a party. A stage, fully kitted out with dB loudspeakers and lights from sister company SGM, was the centrepiece for the seminars and celebrations. The party welcomed over 200 visitors to the state-of-the-art showroom for a lively celebration. The company certainly has a lot to be pleased about after growing from a three-man team to a 35-member operation, merely a decade later. “I’m extremely proud of our development over the past 10 years,” said managing director Michael Herweg. “We have built a team instilled with the same passion that we had when we started. “Back then we were selling, picking and packing all at once,” remembers Arne Deterts, now sales director Germany and one of the original three. “The drive and enthusiasm for excellent levels of customer support was just the same then as it is now.” Adding to the celebrations was the announcement that dB achieved a 25 per cent growth in sales in 2010 despite harsh economic conditions. “We consider growth in this economy to be a particularly notable success; in many territories dB Technologies is seen as one of the leading brands in the RCF group, which is an incredible position to be in,” Herweg stated. The fourth annual Prosonic convention invited 85 of dB’s dealers and sales reps from 40 countries, in order to educate them on the company’s newest products and developments. Dealer awards and an open discussion were held to bring the guests up to speed with the company’s high points, while providing a forum for feedback from its partners. “This was a chance for distributors to really get to know the potential of each of the ranges; we've given them every tool they need to help sell them in their territories,” remarked Herweg.
“It is very important to us that we listen to our distributors,” continued European sales manager, Harald von Falkenstein. “Despite visitor numbers suggesting that dB Technologies has gone global, we are fully aware of the value in keeping a local focus.” DVA T12 The highly anticipated DVA T12 active loudspeaker module was previewed during Prosonic. Building on the success of the company’s T4 line array system, the T12 will provide three times the power (1,200W) of the T4 while maintaining the same width measurements, meaning it can be added to an existing T4 system to increase its capacity. DWS800 dB’s DWS800 digital wireless system was also presented in an in-depth seminar about digital wireless technology. The company stated that ‘analog is dead’ and the 'future-proof' digital microphone system was designed to address the problem of narrowing frequency bands by using its digital transmission technology, ensuring many more frequencies are available in a narrower band. CROMO SERIES Sound demonstrations against competitors and technical presentations on the Cromo series were held to highlight the power and sonic characteristics that can be produced from the relatively small speaker with a modest price tag. “I couldn't believe the difference in sound quality, compared to other manufacturers' products in a similar price range,” said Finland distributor, Jori Asikainen. Peter Trojkovic from dB’s Australian dealer deemed Prosonic a success, stating that he would return again next year for the educational seminars and to enjoy the company’s hospitality. “The team made sure we were very well looked after for the duration. The food, drinks and music were the perfect end to a good day's work,” he added. > dbtechnologies.com
OCtober 2010 23
> LIVE SOUND AUDIO TECHNICA RIBBON MICS
Dance to the ribbons Acclaimed live sound engineer Ben Booker uses Audio Technica’s 4080 and 4081 ribbon mics for various applications on tour with Alphabeat... box of four beautiful looking Audio Technica ribbon mics arrived just days before I set of on a Danish outdoor touring festival to mix monitors for the Danish pop group, Alphabeat. This turned out to be the perfect place to put them through their paces. The AT4081 is a long, pencil-shape side address mic. It comes with a rubber shock mount and a windshield. The AT4080 is a more traditional looking mic, which is a similar size to AT4050, one of my normal choice’s for overhead duties. It features a cradle shock mount and wind shield. Both mics are finished in silver and look very well made.
DRUM OVERHEADS Alphabeat’s drummer hits the skins really hard, which can cause some microphone problems, whether simply positioning or handling the signal. Both sets of mics sounded great and handled the high SPL. I tried them in various positions, but found the best sound was achieved when the null point of the figure-eight pick up pattern was pointed at the snare with the mics in an upright position. With a little compression, a really nice, full drum sound was achieved. The mics seemed to take the harshness out of the cymbals while retaining the high-end air. GUITARS I tested both mics on the guitarist’s amp alongside a Sennheiser supercardioid e906 instrument microphone. He uses a Laney VC30, a very bright amp (think Vox AC30). Both the 4080 and 4081 tamed the guitar very well. The sound was smooth and removed the bite of the amp without losing all the definition. The only minor down side to using a figure-eight mic on guitar is that you hear a lot more stage sound than normal. This is not too much of a problem for mixing on in-ears, but I think I would struggle to put these mics in loud wedge mixes.
CROWD MICS I tested both pairs of ribbons as crowd mics for use with in-ear monitors. I normally use a pair of pencil condenser mics positioned either side of the stage pointing just over the front row of the crowd. I put the 4081s out first with the windshields on and was surprised to hear some cracking and banging. I checked the cables, which were fine, then went back to my normal mics, which sounded good. When I returned to the 4081s I realised it was the wind making the banging noises. To be fair, it was really windy. I tried the 4080s but the same noise could be heard with the wind. The next day was a little less windy so I tried again. I’m glad I did, as the sound of the 4081s in the in-ears was great. With very little eq, I had a really balanced sound picking up crowd noise, but, due to the figure-eight pick up pattern, a lot of the stage sound as well, which was a really nice bonus. I then swapped to the 4080, which also had a very smooth sound. The difference is minor: the 4081’s are slightly brighter and the 4080s have a little more body. CONCLUSION These mics sound great. They would be a great addition to any mic box to give you some different flavours and I would recommend using them as a second mic on guitar to achieve some tonal options. The only small problem is when using them outdoors when it’s windy. I guess on those days you would just have to put them away and miss that sound.
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> LIVE SOUND SEAN RAMPTON
After the Libertines disbanded, Carl Barât asked Rampton to tour with his new band, Dirty Pretty Things
Toilet circuit troubles A live engineer with three decades of experience under his belt, Sean Rampton has had his fair share of tough gigs. He tells Rob Hughes that no matter how bad the gear or the venue, the show must go on… aving to make space in the mag for a last minute ad is never a bad thing, but invariably results in a minor wrangle about whose feature must be subjected to a sustained attack with the editorial tomahawk. This can be a somewhat disheartening affair, particularly when a fascinating quote by veteran FOH engineer Sean Rampton is lost in the ensuing massacre. But rather than dwell on the injustice, I quickly considered ways of putting things right and in a moment that temporarily gave credence to the wildly untrue phrase ‘every cloud has a silver lining’, I called Rampton to put forward the idea that we give him his very own feature
in the October issue. Rampton was delighted and suggested we meet at an intriguing Finsbury Park venue, the Faltering Fullback, to get some ideas down. En route, much to my chagrin, I discovered that our fresh-faced staff writer, Adam Savage, had once again lifted my dictaphone and that I was left with what you could call ‘the loaner’. After forcibly convincing myself that, as a rookie, his need for the device was greater than my own, I adopted the manner of said fullback and greeted a very cordial Rampton with an explanation of my poorly equipped circumstance, coupled with a pledge to make do with the unwieldy and unfamiliar device that was burning a hole in my
You have to find a way to make it happen. And where there’s a will there’s a way. Sean Rampton FOH, Chase & Status
SEAN RAMPTON LIVE SOUND <
rucksack. This must have triggered a thousand or more images in his head of having to work under pressure without ideal equipment because, for the following anecdotes, young Savage is, in some way, to thank… SETBACKS AT THE CHARLOTTE “No matter what equipment you’re working with, or not, as the case may be, the show has to go on,” says Rampton. “You have to find a way to make it happen. And where there’s a will there’s a way. As an engineer, this situation is particularly common when you start off small and build up to bigger things. You start off doing the ‘toilet circuit’, so you’re inevitably going to find yourself in places that don’t have all the right kit. Sometimes they don’t have any of the kit that you’d expect, but you have to make do with what’s there. “There was a favourite venue of mine on the toilet circuit – in Leicester, called the Princess Charlotte. It finally closed its doors last year, but for a long time it was a regular gig for a lot of bands and a big part of the indie scene in the city. But it was hard work – you had a stone flagged floor, a small aperture of a stage with a low ceiling, the system was caned to pieces, there wasn’t one microphone stand that wasn’t held together with gaffer tape. But once you’d been there a few times, you learnt the best way of making the most of the venue; you learnt how to deal with the acoustics and how to make the stands stand up. You quickly learnt that you needed to tape them to the stage as well because that began to give way over the years and it had a bit of a slant to it. I wouldn’t wish the Charlotte on anyone, but it was important to the scene and to the bands that played there so we had to do our best with it. “I did a gig there with a punk band called Compulsion, around about 1993 or 94 with Shed Seven on as support. Our LD had hired some gear from Bryan Leitch who had a company
called Art of Darkness, which had recently taken delivery of a brand new digital lighting system. Unfortunately, the house power supply was totally inadequate and when we tried to switch it on it didn’t work at all. But we noticed that underneath the stair well was an old generator, so we took it out the back, ran the cables inside and fired it up. “We found out that we could run four lights with it, so we decided to give it a go. The show started and the first thing that happened was all the petrol fumes started coming through the door, so we had to tape the door up. Then the generator started getting louder and louder until it sounded like it was going to explode. I looked up and the lighting designer had got eight lamps on the go. This was great, until it ran out of petrol halfway through the show. When all the lamps went out the LD marched through the punters, switched the house lights on and went straight to the bar and ordered a pint. We finished the show with the house lights.” A DISTRO DILEMMA “These Heath Robinson approaches are actually sometimes the best. “Back when I started working with Dirty Pretty Things, after my last gigs with the Libertines, the tour started in Mexico City and the first show was at a sort of festival come A-list party.
October 2010 27
> LIVE SOUND SEAN RAMPTON
A heady mix >>> scores of acts over the years
Rampton has been the FOH stalwart for
C “We got there and the site for the gig must have been a big mansion house that had been torn down. All that was left were tennis courts, but there was rubble everywhere and the stage had bits of metal sticking out and all sorts. If it was the UK, health and safety would have had a field day, but it wasn’t, it was Mexico. The whole stage was rickety and they had these side fills that looked like huge boxes on sticks. I don’t know what they were, but they were big old lumps and to keep them in place, they had the biggest, most colourful collection of bungees you’ve ever seen, wrapped around bits of scaffolding and these full-range cabinets. They had the power distro sat in a big puddle behind the stage in an orange box to keep it above the water, but every time the kick drum was hit or the subs made some noise it splashed water all over it. “I said to them: ‘are you sure about that?’ and he said: ‘yeah, it’s fine, we do this all the time’. Well, it all seemed to work okay – if you do something enough you learn how to iron out the problems don’t you?”
If it was the UK, health and safety would have had a field day. But it was Mexico. USE YOUR EARS: Rampton worries about ‘visual mixing’
BACK TO BASICS “I started engineering in 1980, mixing for a punk band called Here & Now. We had a Canary 24 into two desks with fixed eq – high/mid, low/mid and bottom end. There was no outboard or anything, no gates; all we had was one WEM Copicat and the most modern bit of kit was a Roland Space Echo, which was amazing. And I didn’t care what I was using either, because the whole buzz of going out on tour was so great that it didn’t really matter and I would have worked with whatever I had. Using that sort of gear helped me learn to get the best from a console or PA, no matter how basic it was. We got some great gigs out of some very average gear. “Having all the best gear can even be a curse. The powerful technology we’ve got these days is great, if used responsibly, but my biggest concern is the way that digital equipment is affecting the way engineers work. I love the thinking behind the drive to give us more tools – the fact that I can use plugins on a Digidesign desk is really cool – but my gripe with it is that it encourages you to use your ears less and your eyes more, and I think that is fundamentally wrong. Ultimately, you’re being paid to make something sound good, not look good.”
urrently handling FOH for Chase & Status and, when they return the stage, Basement Jaxx, Rampton is also employed as both a FOH and monitor engineer at the Shepherds Bush Empire, Koko and Indigo at the O2. His career began in 1980 and a tour with anarcho hippy punks, Here & Now, during which he honed his craft on an early PA system designed and built by Tony Andrews. Rampton stayed with the band for nearly four years, before getting involved in promoting and managing bands in his hometown of Southampton. Acts included The Cropdusters and Flik Spatula who enjoyed relatively successful, if short careers. In 1988, Rampton was invited to work for Vince Power's Mean Fiddler Organisation and became promoter of his new Islington Club, The Powerhaus. He gave the venue it's name and chose the musical policy, booking the first London dates for most Madchester scene bands such as The Stone Roses, and UK shows for Dinosaur Jr, Naked Prey, Mo Tucker and Half Japanese among others. Rampton recalls that the first demo he listened to was by an outfit from Wiltshire called Jesus Jones. After a brief quarrel with Power, Rampton began engineering on a full time basis at The Mean Fiddler, Powerhaus, Subterania and eventually The Garage and The Grand. He soon started working directly with artists, such as Ash, which he juggled with Compulsion, one of his favourite bands. He went on to work with numerous successful touring acts, including Shelby Lynne, Remy Zero and The D4. More recently, Rampton has delivered live mixes for The Libertines, Kate Nash and The View. He has also done some studio work, remixing live audio for Chase & Status at Ibiza Rocks for MTV and, last year, recording an album for US band The True Lovers at Mission Sound in Brooklyn. This was tracked in January 2009 and mixed April the same year.
A Ribbon Revolution... ...the rules have changed There’s a revolution underway in recording studios and on live stages stretching far and wide across the UK and beyond. Renowned producer and Chairman of the Music Producer’s Guild, Steve Levine has added his voice to a chorus of unswerving praise aimed directly at Audio-Technica’s revolutionary AT4080 and AT4081 Ribbon Microphones:
“Using the AT4080 for vocals, it sounds instantly like a late 50’s, early 60’s session, but without the noise. It has that thick warm vocal sound reminiscent of so many great vocals of the era... ...The AT4081 is now my first call when recording guitar amps... they sound so sweet...” Steve Levine
With no fewer than 18 patents pending, Audio-Technica’s AT4080 and AT4081 successfully solve the problems of fragility and low output that have historically plagued ribbon microphones. The AT4080 and AT4081 are covered by Audio-Technica’s unique lifetime warranty, and can be trialled free of charge under our First Impressions Scheme. So why not join our revolution, visit www.audio-technica.com/firstimpressions for more information.
Connect with us... twitter.com/AudioTechnicaUK youtube.com/AudioTechnicaUK flickr.com/audio-technica facebook.com/AudioTechnicaUK
> REVIEW MC AUDIO LABS EQ1CH
Italian warmth Wes Maebe takes MC Audio Labs’ EQ1ch three-band valve equaliser out the box to mix Freestate and New Model Army and found warmth and elegance in a 2U rack... met the guys from MC Audio Lab at this year’s AES Convention in London. A little stand, just around the corner from my APRS base camp, was displaying very cool looking black rack units with valves, blue lights, rather chunky controls and funky VU meters. It goes without saying that I had to go and investigate. MC’s Manuel Curcuruto can spot a gear freak when they see one and got me wearing headphones and playing with the EQ1ch single channel valve eq. Exhibition hum and headphones – a distinctly imperfect listening environment – but I could immediately hear this box had serious potential.
WHAT’S IN THAT BOX? The EQ1ch is a single channel, threeband valve equaliser. It is entirely passive with the valve stages taking care of the buffering and the output stage amplification. The low frequency band and the high frequency cut both have a shelving characteristic, going from 20 to 150Hz and four to 20kHz, respectively. It is the LF band that gives this unit its Pultec feel. You have boost and cut on the same band, which can be used at the same time, again very much like the Pultec PEQ. When you use the boost on its own, it will give you 14dB of gain. The cut can shelve down to about 12dB. When used together, the cut amount drops once you boost past the first quarter. It is very important to realise that the cut of the LF band works at a x10 ratio. So, if you boost at 20Hz, the cut will start rolling off at 200Hz. The high cut can attenuate down to 10dB. The mid/high mid band is nice and wide, ranging from 600Hz to 16kHz with a very musical Q control and a seriously good amount of possible boost. The large output knob acts as a master volume control, feeding the Lundahl output transformer and a simple three LED meter, which tell you that you have signal, are at optimal output or going over the limit. Weighing in at 5kg, the EQ1ch is a hefty beast, both physically and sonically. The front panel has the legend engraved in a clear silver. You’ll know this unit is powered on once you flick the bulky power switch and the bright blue light comes on behind the EQ1ch name tag. The back panel provides us with XLR in and out. You have a ground lift disconnecting pin 1 from the signal ground in order to avoid hum. The earth lift elevates the chassis mains earth from pin 1 to avoid hum loops. From the moment you lay eyes on the MC Audio Lab products, you can see that there’s a 30
passionate outfit behind this and that a lot of care and attention has gone in to designing and building these units. SWEET MUSIC TO MY EARS... AND MY CLIENTS’ I was working on a few different projects at the time I recieved the EQ1ch from MC Audio Lab’s UK distributor, Sound Network. It came at just the right time and I was able to put it through some serious, real life situation tests. The very first component I threw at the EQ1ch was a vocal. I was in the middle of mixing a track for Freestate and really wanted to get this track out of the box. I sent the vocal through some gentle vintage compression and into the EQ1ch. That’s when I first realised you can hit this baby hard. This is not a surgical eq, rather an extremely musical ally. I was missing a bit of air and presence on this particular vocal, so I mainly used the mid section at around 8kHz. On the widest Q and the boost almost on full I was expecting a very screechy result. What came back at me was a present, breathing and silky smooth vocal. Those following the Sonic Cuisine online will know that’s when I fell in love with this eq unit. In a world where space is at a premium and money must be wisely spent, I am always looking for units that are not one trick ponies and I was far from done test driving the unit. The kicks and bass from a pretty heavy Abstract Source house track were next in line. When I fed both EQ1ch’d components back in the mix the producer was knocked off his feet. The kick hit you right in the face and stomach and the bass had a nice and round, yet old-school, growly character. Convinced and converted I was not going to let this unit go without using it to its full potential. The guys from New Model Army are celebrating 30 years in the business and will be releasing a double album anthology. They asked me to re-mix one of the songs and you can hear the EQ1ch working away on the track Someone Like Jesus.
When I fed both EQ1ch’d components back in the mix, the producer was knocked off his feet. Wes Maebe
GET CONNECTED If you’re looking for a top notch valve eq to put in your recording chain or to warm up those zeros and ones, give this beast a whirl. Check out mcaudiolab.com online and join them on Facebook. And if you want to get your hands on one, drop the guys at Sound Network a line or swing by the Sonic Cuisine to see it in action. Keep it sounding warm and sparkly. > soundnetwork.co.uk > mcaudiolab.com www.audioprointernational.com
Andrew Low sits in an optimal listening position to bring you the latest acoustic solutions for the studio, live and commercial markets… oom acoustics are a pivotal point of success or failure in any space where audio is broadcast. This point is especially poignant in private recording studios where bad acoustics can mean that mixes do not translate well outside of the room. Similarly, an echoing venue can render millions of pounds of gear useless. But acoustics are just as important in the live and commercial audio sectors where reflections and untreated surfaces can also dump on a big investment in equipment. As Radial’s president, Peter Janis, says: “Changing the PA system from a JBL to a Meyer to an EV will not help a whole lot unless you actually treat the room. A new PA system is only a band aid. You really want to fix the problem. Today, more and more contractors are looking at acoustics and beginning to understand the ramifications. Ultimately, if a venue spends $50,000 and finds that the sound is only marginally better, this only serves to deepen the cut.” Will Benger of EQ Acoustics provides us here with an introduction the world of acoustics for professional audio...
ACOUSTICS FOR AUDIO There are countless ways to upgrade an audio system or recording setup. Investments in equipment often result in subtle improvements in audio quality. Despite the common tendency for continuous upgrading, the extent to which the room itself affects the sound is often overlooked. Consider the dramatic change that occurs when you remove soft furnishings from a room to redecorate. If the effect of removing the curtains is so clearly audible, surely room acoustics are a fundamental influence on the audio quality we so actively pursue? With a sound system we are often looking for a faithful reproduction. The listener wants to experience the sound as the producer intended it to be heard. The audio professional wants to hear accurate sound so they can be confident their production will translate well to listeners’ audio systems. With any system we hear the original sound combined with resonances and reflections from boundaries of the room. What are the implications of the room’s influence on our sound? REFLECTIONS For many, the acoustics of a room are characterised by reverb. It is the most noticeable attribute of a room’s acoustic, particularly when we move between a large and small room. In fact, reverb only accounts for the mid and high frequencies. Bass frequencies also contribute to the acoustic but these are less directional, so we’ll look at bass separately. Reverb consists of countless reflections caused by sound bouncing off hard surfaces. The length of time it takes for these sound reflections to subside is known as the reverb time (RT). The RT of a room is a product of its size and the type of materials present. A long reverb can be desirable when recording acoustic instruments. An orchestra rarely sounds as imposing without reverb and as such many concert halls have an RT in excess of two seconds. A recording engineer will use reverb as a creative tool and understands how different RTs affect the listener’s perception of the music. In a listening environment such as a control room, a short reverb is desirable – around 0.5 seconds. We don’t want the room to be completely dead as it would be an uncomfortable space to occupy and it would not be representative of a normal room so translation would be poor. DISTORTION In a small room, reflections can arrive at our ears in very quick succession. As such, the early reflections in these spaces are interpreted as being combined with the original sound. This causes certain www.audioprointernational.com
ACOUSTIC PRODUCTS STUDIO < frequencies to be cancelled out altogether – an effect know as comb filtering. Where two parallel flat surfaces face each other, reflections can bounce back and forth like a ping-pong ball. Known as flutter echo, it can be very disruptive at the listening position. RESONANCES While mid and high frequencies bounce around the room, low frequencies are less chaotic. Bass has the ability to excite the natural resonances of the room itself. This results in some notes being louder than others. At different points in the room the bass frequency response can vary considerably. Resonance, like reverb, continues to ring on after the original sound has finished. This causes a lack of definition in the bass. In a purpose built listening room the dimensions are chosen very carefully. The relationship between the length, width and height of the room determines how evenly spaced the modes or resonances are. This makes for a flatter and more uniform bass response at different listening positions. ACOUSTIC ABSORBERS All materials, including air, absorb sound to some degree. Porous materials tend to be most efficient; hence acoustic absorbers are often made from compressed fibres or open cell-foams. Adding acoustic absorption to a room reduces the RT time, but strategic placement allows minimised distortion. The performance of an absorber is known as the absorption coefficient. This is a value between 0 and 1 (0 meaning no absorption; 1 meaning 100 per cent absorption). Absorption is normally tested between 125Hz and 4KHz with a separate coefficient at six different frequencies. When buying absorbers, check that they perform adequately at the frequencies that need to be addressed. Fire ratings vary between materials so check they comply with your needs. Foam is generally the most affordable option, but fabric wrapped fibre products tend to last longer and can be relocated easily. The look of the product is often a key consideration. The thickness of a material determines the range of frequencies it can absorb. A balanced room has an even decay time from low to high frequencies. If we cover the walls in thin acoustic tiles, it may appear dead when we clap our hands but in fact the bass and lowmid frequencies will still be untreated. Bass absorbers are much thicker so they absorb lower frequencies. Often known as corner traps, they are designed to sit in the corners of a room, ideally in a stack of more than one trap. PLACEMENT There are various approaches to acoustically treating a listening room. The ideal scenario is a purpose built room professionally designed for optimal acoustics. For those of us without this luxury there is a simple process, which works well in many cases:
Choose your sitting position. You should be centred between the left and right walls just inside the front half of the room. Set up your speakers according to the manufacturer’s specification. For monitor speakers this is normally an equilateral triangle formed by the two speaker positions and a point just behind your head. Install as many corner traps as you can fit and afford. You can’t have too many and the more you have, the more even your bass response will be. Treat your first reflection points. These can be identified by having someone move a mirror around the walls and ceiling. If you can see one of your monitors in the mirror, note the location and treat it with an acoustic tile. The common locations are behind the speakers; either side of the sitting position and above the sitting position. Add additional tiles to your taste or to treat specific problems. You may put some tiles on the wall behind you if the room is still too live. Acoustic treatment is essential for accuracy with any listening system. A properly treated room will have a clear stereo image, lots of detail and even sounding bass. With the right products, good acoustics are easily achievable and could well be the best investment you make. THINGS TO REMEMBER Acoustics is not soundproofing. Many acoustics companies also sell sound reduction materials but this must be integrated during the building phase; eq and room correction systems can help your speakers, but won’t improve your room as most acoustic problems occur after the sound has left the speakers; egg boxes and carpet are too thin to absorb anything other than very high frequencies and can be a fire risk; decent speakers in a well treated room sound better than fantastic speakers in a bad room. THE COMPANIES RPG Inspired by the research of Manfred Schroeder, Dr Peter D’Antonio built his first Quadratic Residue Diffusers and in 1983 set up RPG Diffusor Systems in Maryland, USA. RPG developed a complete range of diffusors, absorbers and combination products, many of which have shaped the industry as well as influenced a new direction of studio design ideas, such as the ‘reflection free zone’. RPG have played a crucial role in the development of many of the practices and designs in use today as well as helping to develop standards for the measurement of diffusion and scattering. Acoustic GRG Products began working with RPG Diffusor Systems some 20 years ago, becoming RPG Europe, manufacturing the complete range of RPG Diffusor Systems in the UK for the UK and European acoustic market. RPG has a wide range of acoustic devices for studios, both proaudio and home, from simple foam tiles to bass traps that are effective at 35Hz. Rather than just producing another generic foam panel, RPG developed a new foam panel that would allow users to
Eq and room correction systems can help your speakers but won’t improve your room as most acoustic problems occur after the sound has left the speakers Will Benger EQ Acoustics
October 2010 33
> STUDIO ACOUSTIC PRODUCTS
increase the bandwidth of absorption without having to remove product already installed while making the best use of thinner materials. It used the patented Variable Depth Air Cavity system and produced foam that can be layered to increase performance. RPG Acoustic Tools are room kits made from its Absorbor and BAD panel line, these are traditional fabric wrapped fibreglass panels, which offer increased bandwidth and a range of colours to produce a more customisable aesthetic. RPG has had many prestigious clients, such as Real World Studios, the BBC Studios Maida Vale, Sony Music, The Hit Factory, EA Sports, Code Masters and many others. > rpg-europe.co.uk
EQ ACOUSTICS EQ Acoutics, formerly known as Acousti Pro, are UK manufacturers and suppliers of Acoustic Treatment, Sound Proofing and the Studio Anywhere range of modular acoustic structures, which ranges from vocal booths and control rooms to entire performance facilities. The company specialises in providing solutions anywhere where modular acoustic structures ranging from vocal booths and control rooms to entire performance facilities are needed. Its team consists of technical sales, studio designers, qualified acousticians, commercial project managers, music lovers and music industry veterans with a combined 50-years of practical experience. By manufacturing in the UK and distributing products directly from its own warehouse facilities, it can adapt to most budgets. The company offers services including studio design and build and provides high-performance firesafe modular room systems that, it feels, out perform traditional build methods sonically and financially. From vocal booths and control rooms to full performance facilities, it designs and installs its products quickly and with minimal disruption in full compliance with UK fire regulations and BB93. Eq also offers acoustic treatment for home and project studios, home cinemas and listening rooms, commercial studios for recording post production and broadcast, in addition to varied work for schools and offices. The company can custom manufacture parts from its wide range of materials to exact specifications, subject to suitability. > eqacoustics.com
PRIMACOUSTICS Primacoustic is a manufacturer of numerous acoustic materials for various markets. Its staff has a collective experience of over 30 years in the studio and live sound markets and 15 years in acoustics. The company is highly focused on educating its customers through its website and client interaction and offers a large range of acoustic solutions from room kits to panels, bass traps, diffusors, Studio Globos, IsoTools, hardware and more. Radial’s Peter Janis comments: “There is a lot of misinformation regarding the performance of acoustic panels. The single most important element is understanding that just like a loudspeaker, if you do not produce a reasonably flat response,
your reference will in fact not be a reference at all. This, in our view, means that you really need to balance the absorption. Think of a three way speaker – wonderful mids and highs do not make up for a blown woofer.” Below are actual tests done by the same laboratory on Primacoutics versus a valued competitor, which demonstrate product performance. “In the studio, bass management is critical, but users tend to not fully understand what a bass trap is actually doing,” Janis continues. “It will not reduce the bass in the room, it will reduce the bass reflections in the room. This in turn means that it will reduce the effect of room modes where you either get hotspots or severe cancellation. Most bass traps are only marginally effective. This is because they are limited by their size. A new trend in design incorporates a diaphragmatic resonator. This is how our MaxTrap works. Essentially it is a giant microphone only capable of capturing low frequency energy.”
UNIVERSAL ACOUSTICS Universal Acoustics is a UK manufacturer of acoustic products based in Milton Keynes. The company states that it is unique among acoustic foam manufacturers by being able to provide a range of contemporary profiled designs cut from Basotect fire retardant material the meets class O ratings for use, not only in studios but in public spaces. It is also the only company in Europe that can produce coloured tiles. Universal Acoustics offers a wide range of products including speaker isolating Vibro Pads, Solar System kits, absorption tiles, diffuser tiles and bass traps. They also supply specialised glue, formulated to give great adhesion to walls, while leaving the foam undamaged. All its products are made in the UK under the watchful eye of its staff to provide quality control during the design and manufacturing process. It provides acoustic treatments for use in recording and broadcast studios, music rehearsal rooms, audio and language labs, boardrooms, offices, staff rooms, gymnasiums and any open spaces that require efficient sound absorption to improve the audio integrity and intelligibility plus the performance and dynamics of the room. The company asserts that every studio or listening room needs acoustic treatment and, once treated, it will be the engineers most valuable tool for getting a great sound. Its website features a free online guide and video with tips on how to acoustically treat a room.
If you do not produce a reasonably flat response, your reference will in fact not be a reference at all. Peter Janis Radial
AURALEX ACOUSTICS Auralex Acoustics was founded back in 1977 to offer affordable acoustical products to the market. Company founder Eric Smith started the company in his back garage because he saw that even the big-budget broadcast and recording facilities could not afford the proper acoustic materials. > auralex.com
Below are graphical results from tests done by the same laboratory on Primacoutics versus a valued competitor
Pluto Starter Pack
Acoustic Treatment Room Kit A full range of acoustic treatment tools... Pluto Room kit: 24 x 300x300x50 Mercury Wedges and 1 Space Mist Adhesive. £99.00 inc vat
If you haven’t acoustically treated your room - you should. Unless the sound reflections in your room /studio are carefully controlled you’ll have bass notes sounding muddy, a lack of focus in the mids and highs and vague stereo imaging. So control them with a Universal Acoustics Room Treatment Kit which will dramatically improve the audio integrity and sound definition by the simple application of scientifically engineered acoustic tiles.
And with the new Pluto Starter Kit available for just £99.00 inc VAT, you can kiss that muddy unfocused sound goodbye for a lot less than you’d expect.
Go online for your FREE Acoustic Treatment Guide Find your nearest dealer at: www.scvlondon.co.uk
> STUDIO ACOUSTIC PRODUCTS
Expanded polystyrene optimised two dimensional primitive root diffusor, moulded from high density Caril-F flameretardant grade expanded polystyrene Employs two dimensional optimised primitive-root reflection phase grating principle, using an array of rectangular phase blocks Installed in the same orientation to preserve the two dimensional orientation of the surface
SOUND ABSORPTION FOAM
Complete home studio in a box Made from high density 1.8lb open cell foam Three inch thick Z-foam and wedge components provide effective mid and high frequency absorption (500Hz+) Z12: 54 open cell polyurethane acoustic foam components Z14 includes an additional pair of Australis Bass Traps UV resistant dark charcoal finish compliant with California C-117 fire and safety specification
VDAC technology provides minimum point of contact with the mounting surface, thus enabling most of the foam to be positioned away from the wall for optimum absorption First nestable profile foam First profile foam using patented VDAC technology Available in Class A Melaflex and UL94 Polyflex (polyurethane) Additional absorption can be achieved by stacking new layers on top of the existing ProFoam
Lightweight material demonstrating excellent acoustic properties, and used for architectural applications when a higher degree of fire resistance is required; typically in large areas or public building spaces Class-O surface as defined in paragraph A12B of Building Regulations document B and achieves BS476 part 7, Class 1 and B476 part 6 Ultra Fire Retardant Basotect foam material 600 x 600 x 50mm tiles plus 600mm and 300mm Jupiter or Mercury bass traps
BROADWAY ACOUSTIC PANELS
Fabric covered acoustic panels with resin hardened edges Made from high performance 6lb glass wool Balanced absorption down into the bass region Class-A/1 fire rated for safe use anywhere Up to six times greater density than typical foam panels for balanced absorption throughout the audio listening range Each panel is fully encapsulated with micromesh and edges are resin hardened to assure safe handling during installation
First melamine-free acoustical foam with a Class A fire rating Slim 1.5- thickness Offers a noise reduction coefficient of .90 Extended durability due to reduced oxidation Available in two sizes: 2x2-foot and 2x4-foot Presents a low-cost option for sound absorption in churches, restaurants, clubs, professional settings and other venues
Dependable quality and performance Compatible with EQ’s Airspace Tiles Durable, soft-touch fabric facing Standard colours available Colour Panel L Acoustic Tiles: 990x450x50mm, soft touch, hard wearing brushed nylon faced acoustic tile with FlexiFit Colour Panel S Acoustic Tile: 450x450x50mm. Other features same as L Acoustic Tiles
PRIMAFOAM STUDIO KITS
High NRC ratings and the relevant fire retardant specifications. Each system includes an installation guide and the appropriate quantity of Cosmic Fluid Features generous quantities wedge tiles and Mercury Bass traps, each with 86 per cent NRC and 28-32 kg/m3 density Six competitively priced systems are available
Vocal booths, drums rooms, recording spaces, rehearsal rooms, home cinema, private consultation rooms and more High performance modular steel structures Acoustically optimised interiors Choice of finishes Firesafe Selfbuild kits and installation services Fastbuild with minimal disruption
PLUTO/MERCURY ROOM KITS
Broadband bass trap High performance corner mounted Suspended diaphragm absorbs bass down to 50Hz High density front absorber controls highs and mids that stretches the full size of the device Ideal for small rooms where modes cause problems Three-inch thick front-mounted 24 x 48-inch Broadway panel made from 6lb per cubic foot high-density glass wool fiber
Its shaped structure enlarges the surface area and allows sound absorption values to be achieved in Mid to High Frequency ranges Sheet Size: 1,000 x 1,000 x 70mm (1m²) Material: Foam material on a melamine resin base, density 11±2 kg/m³ Flammability: Class 0 BS476 part 6, class 1 BS 476 part 7
COLOUR PANEL TILES
35db and 41dB versions available. 35db: 44mm thick, sound reduction Rw = 35dB; FD30 or FD60 fire rated 41dB: 65mm thick Sound Reduction Rw = 41dB; FD30 or FD60 fire rated Standard opening size: 2095x1005mm Wide range of veneer options available Double leaf doorset with 34dB rating available
> STUDIO STUART ROSLYN
Holding it together For UK producer Stuart Roslyn music is business, but uniting the two in a career requires no small amount of diligence. He speaks to Rob Hughes about balancing the creative with the corporate… udio Pro’s much-loved advertising manager, Darrell Carter, has a phrase that he delivers every time he manages to collar someone on the telephone that he’s been after for a while, which is quite often: ‘You must be the busiest man/woman [delete where not applicable] in pro audio’. And if just ten people read this feature, I’m confident that this will strike a chord with one of you, because a phone call from Carter is never more than a few minutes away. I’d never given much thought to who was actually the busiest person in the industry but I think, despite Carter’s valiant efforts to locate them, I might have beaten him to it. The first sign came when I fired off an email request for an interview with Stuart Roslyn and the reply came not from the man himself, but from a very efficient assistant named Brian. Having an assistant isn’t, broadly speaking, an unusual thing, but in this business it is something of a rarity. I’ve been lucky enough to interview some of the most celebrated producers and engineers around and only one or two, with schedules that Clark Kent would find it hard to adhere to, had assistants. I quickly got the impression that Roslyn’s time was stretched tighter than Burt Reynolds’ face, which wasn’t much of a revelation, having read the list of artists and projects that he’s been working on in recent times. The likes of Leona Lewis, Finley Quaye and Mark Owen have all called on his services, and he has just bagged a worldwide number one in the dance charts with a Paul Oakenfold remix of the track written with Matt Goss called Firefly. TV shows such as The Oprah Winfrey
A I’ve done every job under the sun just to afford the next bit of gear or help me make music in some way. Stuart Roslyn
Show and the forthcoming Ray Winstone feature film Father of Girls have been finished with scores composed and recorded in his studio, found in south west London’s Matrix complex. And when he’s not snatching the odd moment to make music, he’s taking care of the myriad business issues generated by two production companies and a management firm. Despite an in-tray of biblical proportions, Roslyn was kind enough to give us a few minutes of his time… What does your work involve at the moment? There are three branches to what I do – Intrusion Productions, Red House Productions and Red House Management, which I run with my business partner Eamonn England. We’ve just signed a band called The Musgraves to Imagem Publishing. We’ve been developing them for a few years now and currently we’re concentrating on getting autumn/winter press and radio for a release in April 2011. Another avenue is my own songwriting and production. I’m always developing new artists, as well as writing and producing for established acts. I’ve been working with several X-Factor finalists and also developing artists with Crown Management. I’ve written songs for The Monroes in Germany that have sold over a million, so songwriting is a very important aspect. My daily process is to try and combine all these things and still actually make music, which is the only thing that earns me money, really. So along with all the business stuff I need to make sure that I’m doing something musically every single day. www.audioprointernational.com
STUART ROSLYN STUDIO < There’s no definitive answer to how you fit everything in, but and you’ve got to cut your teeth somewhere. Then I started sequencing with Cubase on an old PC, but it couldn’t I think you do have to be disciplined at times. If I’ve got a production to finish, I’ve got to make sure that I don’t answer record audio because it had no memory, all you could do was sequence with it. That was synced to my eight-track the phone or get sidetracked by emails and just make sure with MIDI timecode. It was a very complicated process, but that the production gets done. it gave me a good grounding. If I’ve got The Musgraves, that can take up a lot of time because we’re working on styling, making videos, promotion Bring us up to date then, what sort of setup do you use and radio and the kind of stuff that takes a long time to set these days? up and involves a lot of meetings. I can’t physically be in the I use Logic now and I still have a studio and do all that. We try and an old Mackie 24-8 analog console, juggle it so that we can fit it all in, because it’s great to have a nice but sometimes it gets tricky when everything comes at once and I’ve When you’re self employed analog desk to run signals through rather than it all being digital. I got a film score to finish, publishing you’ve got to make sure love that board. Some people still deals to sign and three productions that you’re keeping up with say that it’s like having a 100-grand to complete by the end of the week; in the studio. I found an that’s when it gets a bit hairy and I every thread that’s going on, console old copy of Sound On Sound when I become a hermit. because ultimately, the was moving this year from around When you’re self employed and 1993 or something, and it was on doing it for yourself, you’ve got to buck stops with you. the cover. It cost something like six make sure that you’re keeping up Stuart Roslyn grand at the time and I thought: with every thread that’s going on, ‘wow, that was a lot of money back because ultimately, the buck stops then, equivalent to something like a 20-grand desk now’. with you. You can’t just go to bed and pull the duvet over And it’s a real workhorse, everything still goes through it. I your head. But if you’re ambitious, it’s good to have that plough drums through it because it gives me more pressure – it’s what you thrive on. headroom and I can fire them a little bit and then stick them back into Logic. How have you arrived at what you’re doing now with so Regarding microphones, I use SM58s and my Charter many different elements to your business? Oak SA538B, which is a fantastic all round mic, especially There’s not been one single thing that has made my career a good for vocals. I don’t compress anything to tape and I get success, it’s just been many smaller things that have grown a great live, organic, raw sound that is very well suited to and snowballed. It’s been a long evolution from when I was the Musgraves. I used a £5,000 mic in a big studio once and very young, but I’ve always written songs since I was a kid and that’s where it started. I use the term ‘songs’ very loosely, the result wasn’t what I hoped. Next time, if I do go into another studio, I’m going to take my own mics and tell but I began by writing music on the piano. Along the way I’ve done every job under the sun; I’ve been them that we don’t want it going through any processing, just straight to tape, and I’ll deal with it afterwards. a window cleaner, a milkman, a butcher and I’ve delivered pizzas, but all that was in order for me to be able to afford the What parts of the recording process do you handle on next bit of gear or help me make music in some way. I once your own? worked in Harrods selling towels and I went down to the In terms of producing my artists, I do everything. I do all piano department and said: ‘you’ve gotta have me in here the recording myself. I do everything in my own studio in because I’m a pianist’. I did whatever I could to be involved the Matrix. I can’t really fit a drum kit in my live room, it’s with music because I never saw anything else as being a more of a vocal booth that doubles as Brian’s office, but it’s potential career. totally perfect for me and if I need to record live drums, I’m a musician first, but I started earning money from I’ll just use another studio, but I don’t have to TV and film before I started making money from do that so often. I’ve used external studios, songwriting and production. The songwriting but I actually recorded The Musgraves in and production was something that I was my house. We made the living room the always doing, but the income from TV and drum booth and the dining room was film enabled me to spend a bit more time guitars and we had wires running all doing the songwriting and developing over the place and it was great fun artists and production. I got good at for the five weeks last summer that production because I wanted my own we did the album. songs to sound good enough to pitch The times that I have put a band to artists and labels and so on, so it all in other studios hasn’t really been went hand-in-hand really. that great. I think, unless you’ve got Being in the Matrix complex has it locked out for three weeks, just really helped. We’ve got Modest going in and doing a day or two can be Management and Crown Management a bit difficult because you’re under time here, plus a lot of other great producers, constraints. You’re in someone else’s studio, including Pete Martin, who is only 20 feet the band don’t feel quite as relaxed, you’re not away. Pete Tong, who I’m doing some work with, is used to the sound in the studio and all these just next-door. Being around people who are in the industry offers you an extra ear that you can trust. When you contributing factors mean that actually, what you end up with is not as good as what you could have achieved work at home on your own I think you can lose touch with yourself and yet you’ve spent £1,000 a day. what is happening out there. Also what it means is, at midnight, if you fancy doing a drum track after a bottle of wine and everyone is more At what point did the technical aspect to music making relaxed and up for it then that’s fine, you can do it without and recording come in? being charged overtime. I think it’s a difficult balance to find, As soon as I could afford to buy gear. I didn’t just spend 20 and like I say, if the record label is paying 30 grand for you to grand on a studio or anything; it was literally one keyboard, have the studio for three weeks then great, that’s a different then a drum machine, then a sequencer. Then I bought a ball game because everyone can relax, but if you’ve got 12 Yamaha MT8-X, which was a cassette eight-track. It took a hours and you’ve still got four takes to do and it’s 11 o’clock normal C90 cassette that you could buy anywhere and that’s and everyone’s moaning... I can’t work like that. when I really began to learn about recording. I mean it was bloody awful, but at least it helped me understand the process > intrusionuk.com www.audioprointernational.com
October 2010 39
COLUMN BROADCAST <
Letter From The Front CTVOB’s Bill Morris writes his second monthly column from the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials…
intson Churchill’s famous line: ‘Never in the field of human conflict has so much been owed by so many to so few,’ from a speech made to the House of Commons on August 20th 1940, were recited by the PA announcer as I stood on the Scanner roof, watching a Hurricane, Spitfire and Lancaster from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight perform low passes over the Main Arena at the close of the 2010 Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials. This annual fly past traditionally marks the close of the major international equestrian competition. It also signals the end of our annual five-day battle of technology versus the elements. This 30-fence, three-day cross country event is set among thousands of acres of spectacularly landscaped Cambridgeshire parkland, originally designed and installed in the 18th century. Using one of our larger high definition outside broadcast units as a central hub, we radiate several armoured, single mode fibre, multi-core cables over distances ranging from 600 meters to 1.5 Kilometres. These ‘spokes’ support their own sub hubs, which we, always looking for a new acronym, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, refer to as ‘Tossas’ (Technical Outside Source Switching Areas). This in turn has led to the creation of a new freelance grade – Tossa Engineer. Strategically placed and well hidden among the verdant parkland foliage, these remote bays of equipment in their individual dome tents, are sited in locations where they, in turn, can support multiple SMPTE camera and audio multicore feeds rigged back from individual fences and obstacles. As an industry, outside broadcast has made full use of emerging fibre technologies. In a sector where water and electricity has traditionally had to work successfully side by
The sight of a lonely crew member, isolated in the middle of a rain drenched field huddled under a sheet of polythene, is becoming commonplace. Bill Morris CTVOB
side, the adoption of a transmission medium that is virtually element proof has revolutionised the way that locations are rigged and equipment supported. When Capability Brown designed the gardens and park at Burghley, he did so with scant regard for television production. Cables running through water conduits, lakes, ditches and rigged across byways have to be tactile, impervious and, above all, strong. We tend to use Telecast’s Adder systems for audio delivery across very long distances. This family of fibre multiplexers allows us to bring multiple analog sound sources down a single strand of single mode fibre. This enables the CTV sound crew to rig several strategic microphones within fences and along the course, without the channel limitations previously associated with traditional copper multi-core cables. When multiple audio and HD Vision sources are required from an individual location, such as a commentary position or remote monitoring area, we tend to use one of our Telecast POV or Python systems. Each pair of end boxes allows the multiplexing of up to eight HD video and audio sources. The Sony HDC1500 cameras deployed on most of our locations utilise SMTE fibre cable. This rugged and virtually impervious cable passes two single mode fibres, two mains voltage cores and two data streams. With a tough stainless steel connector manufactured by Lemo, the integrity of the joints are usually very good, even when submerged in streams or driven over by Land Rovers. Our long suffering rigging teams have had to learn a set of new skills to ensure the longevity and durability of their rigs. The lessons learnt installing major fibre rigs on most of Europe’s championship golf courses as part of our European Tour Golf contract have taught us salutary lessons in fibre care. Cleanliness is indeed next to Godliness when it comes to SMPTE and single mode fibre installations. One spot of mud, one drop of moisture or one spec of dust on the fibre node and the optical level is decimated and function drops off at an alarming rate. In order to balance the inevitable raft of problems that accompany fibre rigs in the field, manufacturers have started to build in additional diagnostic levels within their equipment. OB companies have also had to invest in training for their engineers and riggers, in order that rigs can be terminated and damaged fibres spliced on location. Whether it be Burghley, The V Festival in Chelmsford, or the Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor, the sight of a lonely crew member, isolated in the middle of a rain drenched field huddled under a sheet of polythene, is becoming commonplace. Splicing together 24 strands of fibre with an individual diameter of no more than ten microns is a tricky job in the workshop, let alone in a cold, muddy ditch. The two ends of fibre must be precisely aligned; a small electric arc is then focused on the ends to fuse them together. Before that the cable must be stripped, precision cut, fusion protection sleeves added and the alignment tested. It’s a skill that very soon will no longer be the reserve of ‘The Few’ but by necessity ‘The Many’.
Bill Morris is the business director of one of Europeʼs largest independant outside broadcasting firms, CTVOB www.audioprointernational.com
October 2010 41
Tannoy VQ gives wings to Night Flight New Bulgarian super club installs Tannoy’s flagship system powered by Lab.gruppen C series amplifiers
NIGHT FLIGHT, one of the latest additions to the emerging nightclub scene in the Bulgarian capital of Sofia, has installed a lab.gruppen-powered Tannoy VQ system as part of one of the highest specification audio-visual rigs in the country. The AV installation was handled by experienced Bulgarian technology integrator Bulcomp, which is responsible for other recent nightclub installations in Bulgaria featuring
Tannoy VQ and Lab.gruppen sound systems, including Club Deluxe in Asenovgrad. Night Flight’s new system comprises two clusters of two VQ 60 cabinets, hung each side of the 15 metre stage, with additional paired VS 15DR and VQ 64DF enclosures for LF and down-fill. Six VS 218DR dual 18-inch direct radiating subs are under the stage front to provide all the bass extension that could ever be needed.
Six dual 18-inch direct radiating subs provide all the bass that will ever be needed.
V-series cabinets have been installed throughout the venue, including V300s as balcony delays, V15s providing stage side fill and V12s fulfilling all of the monitoring needs. The system is controlled via pairs of Tannoy SC1 and TDX-1 processors and powered by a rack of six Lab.gruppen C series amplifiers, including a pair of the company’s flagship C 88:4s. > tannoy.com
Void gets extreme
VOID ACOUSTICS supplied a sound system to the UK’s biggest free adrenalin sports festival, Windfest, held in Dorset recently, where 10,000 visitors turned up to see some of the biggest names in the extreme sports. A custom-made Basys system was set up for the bike show on Sandbanks beach in the town of Poole, where riders such as Sam Pilgrim and Blake Samson performed hair-raising tricks. 42
Following Windfest, Void Acoustics will be following the Animal Relentless Bike Tour across the UK. The next stop will be in October at the much-anticipated London Freeze Festival 2010 at Battersea Power station, where Void will again supply the sound system. Details of the system are unclear but Void promises that it will be ‘substantial’. > voidaudio.com
>> CROWN HAS… … Provided the amplification at Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban, a 70,000 capacity venue that hosted several World Cup games. A Harman system, which was installed by Wild & Marr, required 74 Crown I-Tech 4000, 36 I-Tech 8000 and 33 CTs 4200USP/CN amplifiers. Signal processing is provided by BSS Audio, with three Blu-800 devices, eight Blu-160 devices and six Blu-320 devices. Mixing is on Soundcraft RM100 series consoles. www.audioprointernational.com
Martin Audio sells first MLA SCRATCHING THE PAD system to Complete Audio Recent industry deals
German production company invests in cutting edge rig after world debut
MARTIN AUDIO has sold its first Multicellular Loudspeaker Array (MLA) to Berlin-based production company, Complete Audio, following the completion of its world debut with German rap band Fettes Brot. Complete Audio placed an order for 20 MLA, two MLD enclosures
advancement – far exceeding the commonly hyped systems in the market – and the next step in the genealogy of line array-based systems. Martin Audio has taken an entirely revolutionary approach to designing a sound system.” Upon beta testing the system,
MLA is a technological advancement that far exceeds commonly hyped systems. André Rauhut Managing director, Complete Audio
and 14 MLX subs, along with the Merlin network management system, rigging and other peripherals, with Martin Audio’s German distributor, Atlantic Audio. Complete Audio MD, André Rauhut remarked: “I now own a system which is truly unique. The MLA is a genuine technological
André Rauhut and Fettes Brot’s FOH engineer, Oliver Voges discovered that MLA could deliver consistent sound up to 150 metres, translating the engineer‘s mix accurately, throughout the audience. “This was the proof I needed,” said Rauhut. “Before touring with Fettes Brot I only had the opportunity of
hearing the MLA under controlled circumstances, but out on the road everyone – the sound engineers, venue promoters and audiences – were all amazed at the sound clarity and consistency. With conditions changing daily from venue to venue, the MLA mastered even the most stringent challenges. All the promises which had been made by Martin Audio worked in reality.” Wolfgang Garçon, managing director of Atlantic Audio, comented: “Many manufacturers have jumped on the line array bandwagon and Martin Audio could simply have developed a next generation version; but with an amazing R&D team headed by Jason Baird they have come up with a totally different principle. Their goal has been to create a coherent wavefront at the listener’s ear rather than the conventional method of providing coherent waves emanating from the speaker.”
RYAN HEWITT, whose credits include the Red Hot Chili Peppers, has adopted Universal Audio’s UAD-2 powered plugins to remix classic 70s rock tracks for the Guitar Hero series. “I had a direct copy of the 24track analog master from Blue Oyster Cult’s Burnin' for You,” said Hewitt. “It was an honour to work with the original multitracks, because that was my favorite song as a kid. They mixed it on a Harrison 3624 console, which had the same eq that Universal Audio modelled from Bruce Swedien’s desk. I read an article about that desk and I thought: ‘Sweet, I have those eqs’.”
PLUS 4 AUDIO has taken delivery of 12 APG DX12 low profile monitor speakers for rental stock from UK distributor, Red Square Audio. Plus 4 is one of the leading suppliers of PA and monitor systems to the UK TV industry. Based in Surbiton, Surrey, its clients include Fountain Studios, Maidstone Studios and the BBC, as well as various OB events and television shows such as the Mercury Music Prize and Strictly Come Dancing. Plus 4’s Stewart Chaney commented: “I had been looking for a micro wedge monitor for our smaller shows for quite some time. Paul Nicholson said he’d got something that might interest me and gave me a demo of the new DX12s. I was more than pleasantly surprised.”
October 2010 43
BEHIND THE BOARD WITH… DAVE GUERIN The Pogues’ monitor engineer on silver service and (unsuccessful) deer dodging… Which band/project are you currently working on?
Just finished some Pogues gigs, next is the Gorillaz.
Favourite PA system or monitors?
Where are you at the moment?
At home in Ireland. What audio console are you utilising? And how many channels?
For the Gorillaz it’s a Digico SD7. About 110 or so inputs in use. Plus 38 mono outs, and 15 stereo outs. What decision process was behind the choice of this audio console?
Digico SD7, but Midas Pro 6 is also good, as is the Soundcraft Vi6. Can’t stand Digidesign.
What’s been your worst professional experience to date?
What makes you happy when working?
Not a professional experience, but hitting a deer in a van travelling at 100kph somewhere in Sweden after a gig wasn’t pleasant.
d&b M4, d&b M2, d&b Q7 What’s been your career highlight? Favourite venue, festival or studio?
Venue: Brixton Academy, except they messed with the roof 15 years ago and it doesn’t sound as good as it did. Festival: Any with silver service catering and complimentary red wine, for after the gig of course. Studio: Not Electric Lady anyway.
Blur at Glastonbury 2009 was a huge gig. What really pisses you off when working?
With hindsight, what job would you have chosen for yourself?
Singer, then I’d give all the monitor engineers a hard time. Finally, if you weren't working now, you'd be?
At home in Ireland. And I’m not working now, so that’s where I am!
Not being able to do my gig because a union thinks it knows best.
Best toy you take on tour (can be audio… can be other)…
No other desk does this amount of inputs and outputs. Do you utilise any outboard effects/eq, and if so, what are they used on and why?
An SPX90 for an octave up harmonise effect on one of the Gorillaz’ songs. The desk only does octave down.
bringing brands together
The Leisuretec Listings Plus 2010 • Call us to Order Your Copy • Experience • Choice • Value • Service Sound • Lighting • Special Effects • Distribution Power Squared • Tel: +44 (0) 1525 850085 • www.leisuretec.co.uk
> IN SESSION
People and equipment behind studios in the UK and around the world...
Rooms: Control room, live room, two booths Consoles: Neve 8014, Raindirk 10-4 sidecar Mics: Neumann, AKG, Coles, Calrec, EV, Lomo, Reslosound, STC Outboard: Drawmer, Neve, SSL, BBC, Audio & Design, Teletronix Monitoring: ATC, Parasound, Auratone
Rooms: Studios One and Two, two live rooms Consoles: Neve VR60, Neve V-series
Grouse Lodge, Ireland
VALE STUDIOS is a new residential recording studio hidden away in a Georgian manor house in a small village on the outskirts of Pershore, Worcestershire, in the heart of England. It can be reached via train from London Paddington station in just under two hours. The facility has been open for business for just over a year and a half, yet already has attracted the likes of Zak Starkey (The Who, Oasis) and Mike Chapman, renowned producer of Blondie’s Parallel Lines, who employed Vale’s services in producing The Arcadian Kicks’ debut album. Interestingly, Chapman cites this record as some of his best work. Vale is based around a vintage Neve model 8014 console, built in 1971 and fitted with four 1084, 12 1066 and two 2254A modules. Its aim is to be one of the very few residential recording studios in existence with world-class equipment, but without the sky-high prices usually associated with such facilities, which can be prohibitive to many artists and engineers. The studio’s air-conditioned control room comfortably seats six people and offers clear views over the console to
GROUSE LODGE, located in Co Westmeath, Ireland, was launched In July 2002 and, to this day, remains Ireland’s only residential studio. It is situated close to the picturesque village of Rosemount, an hour’s drive from Dublin city or Dublin airport. Prior to opening, the Georgian estate in which the studio complex is housed underwent a total restoration and transformation process. The complex itself includes two world-class studios, both designed by Andy Munro, along with nine double bedrooms in three separate renovated stone outhouses. Each house is a selfcontained unit with kitchen, bathroom, either two or three bedrooms with satellite TV and living room with large open fire. The main studio is purpose built, but integrates the existing 275-year-old stone structure and features a huge control room (900 square feet) with plenty of natural daylight and two large live rooms with, reportedly, superb acoustics. The extensive use of local cut stone gives the space a unique feel and sound. Studio One is equipped with a 40-in, 40-out Neve VR60 console with flying faders/total recall,
the live area and booths. There is plenty of bass trapping, along with a large rear-wall slat-resonator, creating a good, flat response. There are also clear sightlines between the main live room and each of the two isolation booths. The cellar houses an additional isolation booth for amps and doubles as a truly vintage live chamber. In the live areas, musicians will find an array of wonderful instruments and backline, including a Hammond C3 with Leslie 122, Wurlitzer EP200 electric piano, Jones & Co harmonium, Otava melodica and 70s Ludwig Drum Kit with 60s Supraphonic Snare. In the adjacent ballroom stands a Bechstein Model B grand piano, to which mic and headphone lines can easily be run. Separate from the family quarters, Vale has three twin guest rooms and an additional double room to sleep eight people or six band members and a producer. There are separate guest bath and shower rooms and there is no charge for studio clients to use Vale’s guest rooms. The family’s two children, Emilia and Haydn are likely to be found around various parts of the house (but never the studio) during a stay.
Blondie producer Mike Chapman recorded what he thinks is some of his best work at Vale studios. Telephone: +44 (0) 1386 861744 Web: www.valestudios.co.uk
Mics: Neumann, AKG, Coles, Earthworks, Beyer, Brauner
Outboard: Tube-Tech, Manley, Summit, GML, SSL Monitoring: Dynaudio, Genelec, Yamaha
which was recapped this year by AMS Neve, while Studio Two features a 36channel Neve V-series console. Both control rooms are equipped with Dynaudio, Genelec and Yamaha monitoring. Pro Tools is provided as standard and a two-inch tape machine is available upon request. The company aims to ensure that its clients are as relaxed as possible during their stay, contributing to productive and stressfree sessions. To encourage this, one of the main features is a health spa, featuring swimming pool, sauna, jacuzzi and gym. Grouse Lodge has hosted a wide variety of international recording artists including Muse, Snow Patrol, Bloc Party and Manic Street Preachers. The late ‘King of Pop’ Michael Jackson began recording what was to be his comeback album at the studio and was planning to return there to finish off the album after his planned 50-night run in London at the 02 Arena. Of course, this never happened due to his death before the concerts took place. According to reports, the tracks recorded at Grouse Lodge will be released on a new, as yet un-named album next month
Telephone: +353 (0) 9064 36175 Web: www.grouselodge.com
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APRS board member Wes Maebe on working ‘inside the box’
Finger Food from the Sonic Cuisine
Rooms: Control room, live room Consoles: Studer 902 Mics: Neumann, AKG, Røde, Electro Voice Outboard: Vintech, Manley, TL Audio, Tube Tech, Universal Audio Monitoring: Dynaudio, Adam
Kallaghan, French Riviera IN BUSINESS since 2005, Kallaghan Studios is a full service (recording, mixing and mastering) studio located in the French Riviera at the foot of the alps, just 20 minutes drive from Nice airport. The studio building is situated right next to the Mediterranean Sea, giving it a highly desirable location for long periods of recording. For this reason, it also provides accommodation facilities, which include a swimming pool and garden. Kallaghan Studios was founded by 28year-old Charles ‘Kallaghan’ Massabo, who decided to build his own facility after several years spent working in virtually every studio on the French Riviera, while touring with two bands as a musician. He initially used the studio to record his own metal and funk bands Sikh and Really Addictive Sound, but as external demand for use of the facility escalated, he eventually decided to turn it into a fully fledged commercial business. Kallaghan attracts bands from various European countries, however the studio also undertakes work for companies such as Madwaves and NewWave Labs.
Some of these projects have been quite substantial and the studio has been known to partner with other studios in the area, such as Solid Sound, Electric and Coxin Hell. Recent clients have included labels such as Sony ATV, Sony BMG, Sensory Records and Aperture Music. Another high-profile client was Google, which commissioned the studio to produce music content for the Android system. Kallghan’s control room is based around a rare Studer 902 console with 24 mic pres, 24 eqs and 16 compressors. At the core is a Pro Tools HD system using Apogee Rosetta 800 and Digidesign 192 converters. The studio also lays claim to a ‘massive’ collection of plugins. Over in the live room, emptyhanded musos won’t be caught short for an instrument or amp, with a Mapex drum kit, Gibson Les Paul, Fender Telecaster, Mesa boogie dual rectifier and Ampeg SVT4 among numerous pieces. These are complemented by an assortment of pedals, including the Maxon eq, Radias Overdrive Red, DOD Gonkulator Modulator, Boss GT5 and Electro Harmonix Big Muff.
Telephone: Not Listed Web: www.myspace.com/kallaghanstudio
SO, CAN mixing in the box be as exciting as mixing on a large format console? The answer is very nearly, if you have the right gear to hand. I must confess that I’m most at home behind a big analog board being fed by a 16 or 24-track twoinch tape machine. If it were up to me, I’d send all my clients to one of our amazing studios to record all the material, pick a mix room suitable for the job and master it at one of our many top facilities. But we live in a rapidly changing technological world and we have to deal with it. With the drastic change in the buying behaviour of our end users as our creative industry struggles to get paid for music, our clients can’t always rely on the framework and ‘safety net’ the record labels used to provide. This means that production budgets aren’t as large as they used to be, as we all know. With all these challenging budget cuts we find ourselves, more often than not, in a position where we’ll have to mix ‘inside the box’. All this will put you on an almost endless search for the best sounding plugins, the most flexible DAW and the most tactile control surface. Some may disagree, but I think that nothing beats the feel of a fader or the response of a rotary controller. We don’t need to be convinced that mixing is an extremely creative and tactile process. Personally, I feel that using the mouse to make fader moves, and especially rotary functions such as compressor thresholds, takes away all the fun. Clicking a mouse and dragging it round the various controls seems to take a flash more time to complete the operation. Intensive mouse mixing can cause repetitive strain injury and it appears that most of us tend to draw in the automation parameters rather than making ‘human’ fades, taking
the human and creative touch out of our modern day mixes. So why not put a touch of old school mixing into our digital world? There are plenty of controllers around. Check them out and find the one that works best with your software. My Euphonix MC Mix and MC Control are permanently set up in the studio. The MC Mix offers you eight faders with pan control and, with a simple press of a button, you can access all your plugin parameters, making mixing in the box pretty much as tactile as in the analog world. The MC Control gives you an extra four faders to play with. And since Euphonix released Version 2,
One of the key upsides of controllers is that they take your eye off the screen and focus your ears on the music. there is improved touch screen data access and full transport, zoom and scroll control, providing a lot more versatility. On top of all this control, one of the key upsides of all these wonderful DAW controllers is that they take your eyes away from the computer screens and encourage you to focus your ears on the task at hand. But enough lecturing from the sonic chef. I know most of us know the feeling of a good fader, but this is mainly aimed at those who have grown up in the digital world, controlling everything via a mouse and staring at waveforms for hours. Get out there, speak to your peers, try out the controllers, enjoy the feeling of having faders under your fingertips, mix your heart out and have some fun.
Wes Maebe is a multi-skilled engineer involved in all aspects of the studio and live sectors. While spending a great deal of time touring with artists such as Sting, he freely admits that his first love is is studio work and he is most at home either recording, mixing or mastering at his own facility or several top UK rooms. Recent clients have included Alexandra Burke.
October 2010 47
NEW GEAR 1
RCF NX series coaxial stage monitors
Beesneez Mahalia tube microphone
DM-1 Dante card for Netmax
Musik Electronic Geithain active subs
THEY SAY: NX series stage monitors are superior in transducer technology, speaker design and manufacturing. SPECIFICATIONS: RCF’s new NX 10SMA, 12-SMA, and 15-SMA coaxial monitors feature a newly designed coaxial neodymium transducers, large single neodymium ring magnet for optimised high flux density and BL factor. Both new transducers are feature hypervented basket and magnetic assembly. With ten, 12 and 15 inch-woofers, each wedge contains a high power, neodymium 2.5-inch voice coil, oneinch HF driver, titanium dome, neodymium 1.75-inch voice coil, between 129 and 130dB max spl, while providing 90 x 70-degree from a wide dispersion constant directivity horn. The NX 10-SMA and the NX 12-SMA are equipped with new high power digital amplifiers with digital processing.
THEY SAY: The Mahalia was designed due to the ever increasing demand for Neumann U67 sounding microphones. SPECIFICATIONS: Though it is not an exact clone, it captures the nuances of the U67 with the added benefit of nine selectable polar patterns. It has a dual backplate 34mm condenser pressure gradiant capsule. The frequency range is 20Hz to 20khz. It features an output Impendance of 150 Ohms. The SPL handling of the Mahalia is 136db and the self noise is jist 14db (A weighted). The tube is a GE 5 star 5654w tube and the transformer is a cinemag 2510, combined for added warmth and character. Beesneez’s mics are hand made in Australia.
THEY SAY: Dante provides a selfconfiguring, plug-and-play digital audio network. SPECIFICATIONS: The DM-1 can be installed in the Netmax N8000 or N8000-1500 chassis to provide high resolution, low latency audio transmission over IP networks. Audinate’s Dante uses standard Internet Protocols, which works on both 100 Mbits and one Gigabit Ethernet. The Dante Virtual Soundcard turns a PC or Mac into a Dante-enabled device. It provides the ability to play and record audio using any Windows audio application with ASIO multichannel audio support, or any Core Audio Mac application. It uses the Ethernet port on the computer to communicate with a network of other Dante-enabled devices.
THEY SAY: The Basis subwoofers all have Geithain’s cardioid bass dispersion characteristics to reduce room mode excitation. SPECIFICATIONS: The Basis 11K, 13K and 14K subwoofers are powered by a 1,000W Class-D amplifier. All three monitors are powered by same new amp, which delivers a max SPL (1 m) of 112dB, 118dB and 122dB respectively. Features include a built-in bass management system for 2.1 channel monitoring with remote control override, separate LFE input and independent level controls for subbass and LFE. For surround applications, a separate bass management processor is available to drive up to 7.2 systems. Adjustable crossover filters are provided, and a distance/delay control calibrated from zero to one metre. A subwoofer output is also provided.
Recent releases in audio technology <<< 6
Martin Multicellular speaker array
Audix TM1 condenser microphone
Roxdon VB-1 vocal booth
Apogee Electronics Symphony array
THEY SAY: Delivers coverage and consistency not possible from traditional line arrays. SPECIFICATIONS: Martin Audio’s Multicellular Loudspeaker Array features six individual cells in each enclosure, each with its own onboard DSP and power amplification. A 24-enclosure array has 144 cells. Martin Audio‘s proprietary Display 2.0 system design software automatically calculates FIR DSP filters for each cell and a redundantring audio network (U-NET) downloads the settings into each array enclosure. Martin‘s VU-NET software provides real time control of the system. MLA features 140dB peak, per cabinet @1m output; automatic optimisation of array; computer control, monitoring and total control of sound system balance. Additional features include 90 x 7.5degree dispersion; (1136mm (44.7in) wide x 372mm (14.6in) high x 675mm (26.5in) deep) dimensions, one-box-fitsall application range and a global voltage, power factor corrected power supply.
THEY SAY: A highly accurate test and measurement mic. SPECIFICATIONS: The TM1 is a 6mm pre-polarised condenser microphone with omni-directional polar pattern. Its frequency response is 20Hz to 25kHz. Designed to capture acoustic measurements for room analysis software programs, real-time analysers and other sound control devices, TM1 requires 18 to 52 Volts phantom power for operation, and features a four-stage brass body and capsule housing, nickel plate finish, Switchcraft XLR, shock absorbent O-rings and heavy duty snap to fit mic clip. Optional accessories include an acoustic foam windscreen (WS-TM1) that threads onto the microphone housing for secure and stable operation, and a shockmount adapter (SMT-TM1).
THEY SAY: The Roxdon Vocal Booth is designed to provide an acoustically favourable environment to record studio quality vocals SPECIFICATIONS: The Roxdon VB-1 can be attached to any sturdy microphone stand by means of two rubber-protected clamps on the rear of the booth. Any standard thread, mic clip or shock mount can be attached using the fully adjustable mounting hardware that is supplied. For added height, the VB-1 can be attached to the boom section of a suitable microphone boom stand if set in an upright position. Unlike other similar units, the RoXdon VB-1 Vocal Booth has two front wings that are adjustable to vary the acoustic ambience.
THEY SAY: A multi-channel audio interface featuring next generation sound quality, Logic and Pro Tools compatibility. SPECIFICATIONS: Symphony I/O features a modular based system, which can function in standalone mode or connect directly to a Mac via any Mac-based audio workstation. The new Symphony system offers digital audio conversion technology, new Maestro 2 software, multiple I/O options and low latency. A flexible and scalable I/O architecture is provided in addition to an I/O base chassis that can accommodate up to two I/O modules, creating any combination of analog and digital I/O with USB 2.0, Symphony and Avid’s Pro Tools. The new Maestro 2 software offers integral control of Symphony I/O while connection to Symphony 64 PCI or Symphony Mobile Express/34 card provides low latency with Apple Logic, and all Apple Core Audio applications.
> martin-audio.com www.audioprointernational.com
October 2010 49
JHS awarded distribution of Tannoy’s IN BRIEF VQ Live touring loudspeaker system ADAMSON HAS added ProSonic Audio-Lights to its European distribution network. Located on the Island of Cyprus, Prosonic represents a new live sound division of Pana Sound's group of companies. Its portfolio includes Allen & Heath, Shure and T&M Systems. Established in 1931, Pana Sound also offer lighting and own retail MI shops. > adamsonsystems.com WOHLER TECHNOLOGIES announced that Milan-based Aret Video and Audio Engineering, will serve as an Italian distributor for the full line of Wohler products. During the IBC2010 show in Amsterdam, an Aret mobile production truck located outside the RAI showcased a range of Wohler audio and video monitoring product solutions. >wohler.com KLING & FREITAG has announced the appointment of Shanghai MYC Technology Company as the exclusive distributor of Kling & Freitag products. The company will be fully responsible for marketing and sales in Mainland China, Macao and Hong Kong. MYC is headquartered in Shanghai, China, with 1,000 sq metres of office area and modern hi-tech multi-functional showroom. It also has regional offices in Beijing, Guangzhou and Hong Kong. > kling-freitag.biz Jands has joined the exclusive Australian and New Zealand distributor for Creator. Founded in 1997, Creator has four distinct product lines, including matrix switchers, controller systems, conference systems and LED screens. The company invests 25 per cent of their annual revenue every year straight back into the R&D to benefit its product lines. > jands.com.au
50 audioPRO October 2010
TC Group awards JHS with excusive rights to the line in the England and ROI JOHN HORNBY SKEWES has been appointed as the exclusive subdistributor of Tannoy’s VQ Live touring PA system. TC Group International (TCGI) will continue to manage direct relationships with a small number of key accounts in the UK, but JHS’ pro audio division will begin handling all other VQ Live business immediately. JHS has been involved with TC over the past couple of years and was recently appointed as a full-line jointdistributor for the UK for the TC-owned Lab Gruppen power amplifier range, alongside its HK Audio, Allen & Heath and LA Audio pro product ranges. “JHS’ impressive track record in the live sound market and its long standing reputation for professionalism and commitment to ongoing customer support across the entire UK market, make this new partnership an exciting prospect,” said Simeon Ludwell, TCGI's UK touring sales manager.
“We look forward to working with them in realising the full potential of VQ Live and delivering it to the UK and ROI market.” JHS MD Dennis Drumm added: “We are delighted to continue to expand our relationship with TCGI, and bring Tannoy VQ Live to the wider pro audio and specialist reseller market. VQ Live perfectly complements our existing pro audio range and enables us to offer an even wider range of solutions.” Touted as a ‘line array killer’, The VQ Live series features the Net 60 Live, a full range, three-way loudspeaker system with integrated digital signal processing, network control and dual channel Class D amplification. An accompanying VNet 218DR Live is a direct radiating dual 18-inch subwoofer cabinet, which extends the system’s frequency response of the system down to 31Hz. > jhs.co.uk
Focusrite and Stanton Group join forces in Great Britain
Optocore appoints PAT for Australia
Down under: Optocore adds PAT
L-R: Focusrite’s Damian Hawley and Stanton’s EMEA MD Steve Van Laere
FOCUSRITE HAS announced that it will serve as the exclusive UK distributor of all Stanton DJ and Cerwin Vega Pro audio products. Focusrite have been the exclusive UK distributors of Stanton’s KRK for four years. Steve Van Laere, managing director EMEA at Stanton Group commented on the appointment: “Focusrite have shown just what they were capable of with our KRK brand, making it the number one choice for studio monitors in the UK. The Cerwin Vega and Stanton brands have huge potential in the UK, and we’re
excited to be working closely with the Focusrite team to take them to similar heights.” Focusrite's sister company, Novation’s move into the DJ sphere will complement Stanton’s products. Furthermore, with Focusrite's own experience in live sound, with products such as the Octo Pre MkII Dynamic, the company feels that it makes sense to carry the Cerwin Vega brand into live sound. Focusrite sales director Damian Hawley stated: “At Focusrite, we only take on brands that we trust.” > focusrite.com
OPTOCORE HAS appointed Sydney-based Professional Audio Technology as its exclusive distributor for Australia, with immediate effect. The fibre network specialist is the second major pro audio brand to be added to PAT’s portfolio in recent weeks. Earlier this month, the firm announced that it would be distributing loudspeaker brand KME’s line of products. Optocore’s Tine Helmle commented: “I feel we have found the perfect partner in Australia. PAT will concentrate on Optocore’s core markets - broadcast, permanent and live sound.” Salloch said: “The Optocore products bridge the gap between various high end manufacturers when it comes to having a rock solid and reliable network for audio, video and data.” > optocore.de www.audioprointernational.com
Soundking Group promotes Patrick Almond Former Studiomaster head of marketing takes on responsibility for the group’s brands in European markets FORMER HEAD of marketing for Studiomaster takes on responsibility for the group’s brands in Europe Soundking, parent company of Cadac, Studiomaster and Carlsbro, has announced the appointment of Patrick Almond as European marketing manager. Almond, formerly head of marketing for Studiomaster, assumes responsibility for the marketing of the three brands throughout Europe with immediate effect. In his new role, Almond will oversee the group’s promotional activities across the professional audio, live sound, theatre sound, AV, event production and MI sectors. The appointment is a key aspect of the group’s strategy, as Cadac establishes itself, with a wider product
portfolio, beyond its traditional market leading position in theatre mixing consoles, and as Studiomaster reestablishes a prominent position in professional and MI PA, and commercial audio markets. A re-launch of the Carlsbro brand is scheduled for next year’s PL+S show. Almond stated: “Our group strategy demands a more integrated approach to marketing activity across European territories, as expansion of our brands presents new challenges and opportunities in new and overlapping market sectors. While the brands will continue to retain their independent identities, a common, group funded marketing resource will greatly improve their market penetration.” > soundking.com
Riedel bolsters roster with two new team appointments
Crown Audio names new market manager for Installed Sound
RIEDEL COMMUNICATIONS has expanded of its product management and sales teams with the addition of Henning Kaltheuner and Óscar Mezquita. Kaltheuner is a former productplanning specialist from Yamaha with over 25 years experience in the industry. He will be handle Riedel’s backbone technology products. Óscar Mezquita is a former sales manager from Clear-Com and Siemens who brings more than ten years of experience in international broadcast sales as well as extensive engineering know-how to the team. > riedel.net
CROWN AUDIO has appointed Daniel Saenz as market manager, installed sound. In his new position Saenz will be responsible for working directly with customers to support design and development of installed systems and deployment of Crown amplifiers for install applications. He will report to vice president of marketing, Marc Kellom. Prior to joining Crown, Saenz served in multiple roles at Pelton,
Henning Kaltheuner joins Riedel
Marsh, and Kinsella and LLC, an AV consulting and design firm, most recently as senior director of marketing and business development and managed the Las Vegas office. In his new role he was responsible for marketing acoustics, AV, telecomm and security services as well as consulting on major projects in the Las Vegas market. These projects ranged from hotels to theaters and showrooms and education facilities. > crownaudio.com
Please visit our website www.riedel.net
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ROCKNET PERFORMANCE AUDIO NETWORKS The Solution for World Class Events.
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October 2010 51
SOUND TECHNOLOGY SOUND TECHNOLOGY is one of the largest and longest running independent distributors of pro audio equipment in the UK. Its portfolio of brands for the professional audio markets includes the entire Harman Professional range – AKG, BSS, Crown, dbx, JBL Pro, Lexicon and Soundcraft – and numerous other class-leaders, such as Solid State Logic, TL Audio and JoeCo. Having acquired the UK direct distribution division from Harman International in 2008, the former Harman Pro UK and existing Sound Technology companies were merged and now operate from Sound Technology’s Letchworth Garden City headquarters, where centralised logistics and accounts are complemented by market-specific sales and support teams. Sound Technology and its portfolio of brands serves numerous market sectors; installed audio and engineered sound solutions, cinema sound, live sound, studio and broadcast and MI retail. To better serve the pro audio markets, a gradual restructuring has seen an everincreasing emphasis placed on technical and support services. Earlier this year the company announced the formation of its commercial audio Project Team. The Project Team, with experience in the audio design and delivery of world-class
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venues, provides pre and post sales support for individual products and, critically, ‘engineered’ system solutions. Key customers of Sound Technology can call upon the Project Team in the UK, which, combined with additional resources from Harman's global support network, offers unprecedented back-up for their audio projects, from early planning through to delivery. And working in conjunction with leading audio consultants, the Project Team helps to ensure the smoothest possible delivery of prestigious installations. Sound Technology also runs monthly free-of-charge in-house training courses for BSS Soundweb London audio networking and for Soundcraft’s digital live sound consoles. The company has also recently increased its demonstration facilities to include, notably, full-size and sub-compact JBL VerTec line array, Crown V-Rack and high-end SSL, TL Audio and Lexicon studio hardware. > soundtech.co.uk
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TASCAM’s HS-P82 offers 8 tracks of the highest quality recording, yet it’s built for the rigors of location recording with reliable solid-state performance. The HS-P82 is built for location television and ﬁlm production audio, with eight microphone inputs for big shoots or reality programs. The standard XLR microphone inputs include phantom power and analog limiting, with trims controlled from recessed front-panel controls. In addition to the eight individual tracks, a stereo mixdown can be recorded for instant use during editing. Audio is recorded at up to 192kHz/24-bit WAV format to a pair of Compact Flash cards. This solid state media is completely reliable with no moving parts, and you can record to both cards simultaneously for extra security. The Broadcast WAV ﬁles include iXML metadata for quick import into nearly any video or audio editing system, either via the USB 2.0 connection or a standard card reader. The HS-P82 offers several options for power. It runs on either AA or NP batteries, an included AC adapter, external DC input or a V-mount adapter for Endura batteries. An internal slate microphone is available for naming takes. Functions like a 5-second pre-record buffer, front panel lockout and headphone output alert signal further inspire conﬁdence. For high-resolution music recording, a set of AES/EBU connectors is available for attaching pedigree A/D converters and preampliﬁers. SMPTE timecode in and out, video and word sync are provided. All of this is controlled from a colour touchscreen interface which makes operation fast and simple.
MARKETPLACE < MANUFACTURER
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Looking for a sound engineer with ALL of these qualities?... Gear Head knows all the gear and all the tricks
A star makes us sound like us, only better
Good communicator quick to understand what we want
Great ears gets fantastic sound
Nice person gets on with everyone, recommended by previous clients
Will travel and speaks four languages
Plays an instrument speaks our language
Great address book good studio and producer relationships
Superficial resemblance to Kid Rock (not a deal breaker)
Feet firmly on ground no big ego, "no prob" attitude
...Better call Wes then Wes Maebe: Freelance recording, mixing, mastering and live engineer T: 07875 401114
E: email@example.com www: wesonator.co.uk
Email Wes for your FREE copy of his 10 Top tips for Optimising Your Recording Session
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The DVX Autoloader option fully automates DVD and CD testing. It is a standalone system that includes a built-in PC with Windows XP. Just add a monitor, keyboard, mouse and printer and you're ready to go to work. In automation mode, DVD and CD discs are tested, and the detailed results are automatically saved.
With the new QuickScan feature, it can test a DVD-5 in as little as 38 seconds - DVX -3 also Performs bit-for-bit verification on all formats including video, audio & Enhanced CD.
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10 YEARS STRONG dB Technologies’ Harald von Falkenstein and Anne Liversidge pose for a snap at the company’s tenth anniversary party.
AUDIO FISH OF THE MONTH
Red Square Audio’s Paul Nicholson, APG’s Xavier Pion and Innovason’s Hervé De Caro celebrate after hours on Red Square’s booth (above). Visitors enjoy a drink with Digico (below left). DJ Kidney’s beats are on show (below right).
Fred Heuves (l), Former CMO of the Ampco Flashlight Group, Holland, and Liviu Stanescu (r), GM of Five's International, Romania, pose with their best catches from a trip to the Danube Delta in south-east Romania.
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Adam Hall have been producing top quality, durable flight case hardware and fittings since the 70s. In addition, we distribute a wide range of well-known event and audio products. Our extensive portfolio includes LD Systems, LD Premium, Eminence, Defender, Audac, Palmer and Adam Hallâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s own stands and cables to name but a few. For more information call Adam Hall on 01702 613922.