+27 (0)11 470 6800 info@apexpro.co.za

Archive for Month: May 2022

Level 42 level-up with Electro-Voice and Dynacord for UK tour

The recent Level 42 UK tour called on the versatility of Electro-Voice and Dynacord equipment to ensure that every audience had the best possible experience, no matter what kind of venue the band was performing in.

The British jazz-funk band toured with an Electro-Voice

The British jazz-funk band toured with an Electro-Voice X2 system as its main PA, driven by Dynacord TGX amplifiers with control from SONICUE sound system software.

The tour marked the first time that the band’s FOH engineer, Mark Clements, had moved away from Level 42’s usual equipment supplier for 25 years. However, the band had been working with Merlin PA on overseas and festival packages, and it became a natural move to tour the UK with the rental company too.

NEAL ALLEN, MERLIN PA’S

“The percussive and transient nature of Mark King’s style really shone through with the use of the X2’s 12” driver on the Mid Band Hydra.”

A further reason for the switch was to move to Electro-Voice’s X2 system, which Clements had heard several times. The solution’s size and form factor made it the perfect choice for a concert hall tour, but the technical qualities of the X2 also made it a strong choice for Level 42.

“The percussive and transient nature of Mark King’s style really shone through with the use of the X2’s 12” driver on the Mid Band Hydra,” explains Merlin PA’s Neal Allen. “That’s what the technology in the MBH allows you to deliver.”

The capabilities of the X12-128 dual-18” subwoofers were also an important factor for the performance. “This tour was one of the first where we consistently used a cardioid sub arrangement in almost every venue,” recalls Allen. “Due to the nature of the stage setup, some venues required a super-cardioid sub design, which dramatically cleaned up unwanted resonance onstage for Mark King.”

In addition to the X2 main PA, compact 8” two-way XLE cabinets were called into action to provide further support. “XLE was required to provide extra intelligibility and consistency,” says Allen. “This was particularly important at Sheffield City Hall, which is a notoriously tricky venue to contain with a full house when you need to cover all three floors.”

A further aspect that enhanced the tour was the Dynacord electronics and software that drove every performance. “TGX amplifiers and SONICUE sound system software provided the backbone power to the Electro-Voice system,” notes Allen. “The intuitive nature of SONICUE enabled us to make effortless on-the-fly changes at different locations, while also providing an overall picture of all aspects of the system.”

Teatro Garcia de Resende chooses ETC ArcLamp

LEVEL 42 LEVEL-UP WITH ELECTRO-VOICE AND DYNACORD FOR UK TOUR

Portugal’s stunning Teatro Garcia de Resende was recently renovated and selected ETC lighting solutions including ArcLamp luminaires, ArcMesh Drivers, and an Echo control system to upgrade the space.

Teatro Garcia de Resende was recently renovated and selected ETC lighting solutions including ArcLamp luminaires, ArcMesh Drivers and an Echo control system to upgrade the space.

The theatre, which is recognized for its interior ‘Italian-style’ architectural beauty, was built in the 19th century and is a part of the European Route of Historic Theatres: a route around Europe, which distinguishes the most beautiful, historic theatres that represent European cultural heritage.

The theatre’s technical director, António Rebocho, was in search of LED lighting to replace the existing tungsten lights in the building. He particularly wanted an LED solution, which would not compromise the quality of the light or increase maintenance costs. After researching various options, António decided to go with ETC’s ArcLamp luminaires commenting that he had ‘never seen the room so beautiful – the new lights enhanced all the colors, especially the red tones.’

Teatro Garcia de Resende was recently renovated and selected ETC lighting solutions including ArcLamp luminaires, ArcMesh Drivers and an Echo control system to upgrade the space.

ETC dealer, NAN Audiovisuals installed 108 ArcLamp lights with Fade to Warm feature technology into the Teatro Garcia de Resende. The LED luminaires provide quality light, smooth dimming, and up to 90% energy savings. António Rebocho – commented: “ArcLamp is a unique solution in the market which would accomplish everything needed for the project. It improved the quality of light in the theatre whist simultaneously reducing the maintenance costs related to lamp replacements and energy consumption. Being able to control the lighting from the installed button stations and lighting desks was also a great improvement.’”

“The Teatro Garcia de Resende is considered to be a building of great architectural beauty and a landmark in the city of Évora. We are very thankful and proud that our ArcLamp solution was chosen by the theatre. Despite some challenges due to the age of the venue and its electrical infrastructure, the highly experienced staff of NAN, our dealer in Portugal, did a fantastic job with the installation and commissioning of the system. Not only was the lighting result stunning but also highly energy efficient and nearly maintenance free.”

ETC Regional Sales Manager Konstantinos Vonofakidis

ApexPro is the sole distributor of ETC Lighting Solution in South Africa.

Contact us for all your professional theatre lighting needs.

Introducing Electro-Voice MTS Loudspeaker Systems

Electro-Voice introduces the MTS point-source loudspeaker system.

Each MTS model is equipped with four 15″ woofers and dual coaxial mid/high-frequency compression drivers. The system is capable of generating more than 151 dB peak SPL with exact directivity for very long-throw applications.

According to Richard Lawn of Pro AVL Asia, “Having blended new technologies with long-established designs, Electro-Voice has delivered a powerful yet versatile enclosure that refuses to be boxed into a familiar niche.”

Richard sat down with Bob Rieder, Andrew Pardoe, and Oliver Sahm to find out more.

Find out more about the Electro-Voice MTS Series HERE: https://products.electrovoice.com/na/en/mts/

ApexPro is the leading distributor of Electro-Voice products and services in Africa.

Contact us to find out more.

Published by Pro AVL Asia

Meyer Sound Makes Science Education an Adventure at Denmark’s LIFE Campus

Meyer Sound Makes Science Education an Adventure at Denmark’s LIFE Campus

Spacemap Go Spatial Sound Adds an Extra Dimension to Immersive AV Learning Experiences

LIFE Campus was created to give young Danish students intensive engagement with a range of learning experiences in STEM — science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Certainly, local fieldwork and laboratory experiments are fundamental to scientific exploration, but LIFE Campus also has world-leading resources for giving students memorable learning adventures in 360-degree immersive environments created by cutting-edge digital technologies. The facility’s extensive AV systems and sophisticated control networks, designed and installed by the consulting and integration firm Stouenborg, include a total of more than sixty Meyer Sound self-powered loudspeakers.

Located in Lyngby, adjacent to the Technical University of Denmark, LIFE Campus is operated by the non-profit LIFE Foundation and was founded with the mission of inspiring Danish school children to become fully engaged in their formative years with inquiry-based science education. The new 5,400 square meter facility, opened in late 2021 by HRH Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark, is situated in an expansive natural area.

“The LIFE Foundation is an ambitious project with the purpose of strengthening young students’ knowledge of — and fascination with — the natural sciences. Therefore, we wanted to have only the best technical elements in our education center. And that includes outstanding sound systems which afford extraordinary opportunities for auditory support of teaching.”

Mogens Laursen Hastrup, head of AV operations, Technical University of Denmark, LIFE Campus

For large group learning experiences, LIFE Campus offers the innovative Kolossalen (“Colossal Hall”), a large open space that can be divided into two separate rooms. All the walls can serve as projection screens using 11 Panasonic projectors, and to control the acoustics the wall surfaces employ a perforated metal material that helps keep the reverb time to an intelligibility-friendly 0.8 seconds.

One side of the room, with a tiered floor, is termed “Auditorium 180.” Here, sound and visuals are oriented to one side with Meyer Sound’s CAL 96 column array loudspeakers — concealed behind the perforated wall/screen surface — using advanced beam steering technology with beam-splitting capability to precisely tailor coverage to the tiered seating areas.

The other half of the space, when divided and enclosed, is referred to as “Auditorium 360.” From an audio aspect, the most striking feature here is the dynamic spatial audio enabled by Meyer Sound’s powerful yet easy-to-master Spacemap Go spatial sound design and mixing tool. Using an intuitive iPad interface, Spacemap Go allows the user to freely move sounds around and through the space, directing them to the 26 full-range loudspeakers and four subwoofers, either singly or in loudspeaker groups.

“When designing this space, we consulted with workgroups of teachers and tech personnel. They wanted to have 360-degree projection, and although Spacemap Go had not yet been introduced, I knew it was coming. I recommended we support the projection with dynamic spatial sound. The idea was accepted by the group, and fortunately Spacemap Go arrived in time.”

Anders Jørgensen, project manager for Stouenborg

The Auditorium 360 system deploys 12 HMS‑10 surround loudspeakers around the walls, with four more in the ceiling along with 10 UP‑4slim compact loudspeakers. Four MM‑10XP miniature subwoofers supply deep low frequencies.

A key element in making the concept work, according to Jørgensen, was the flat-profile of the HMS-10. “The speakers are all hidden behind the perforated walls, and the HMS-10s were the only ones with the power to project through the walls and still fit in the space allowed.”

The room’s capabilities have opened new horizons for learning, according to Mogens Laursen Hastrup. “The multi-room allows us to present scientific phenomena — such as extreme weather, atomic structure, or lunar landscapes — in completely new ways to get the pupils’ attention and stimulate their interest. The dream is that, when they leave LIFE Campus at the end of the day, they think science is cool and they want to learn more.”

Other Meyer Sound systems are installed throughout the campus, with Ashby‑8C ceiling loudspeakers in the three laboratory classrooms (8 in each), in the large meeting room (4), and in the foyer (16). In the intimate canteen, full-range music reproduction is supplied by two MM‑4XP miniature self-powered loudspeakers augmented by an MM‑10ACX subwoofer.

“Our AV systems are crucial to the support of teaching at LIFE Campus,” summarizes Hastrup. “The projectors and sound systems are the first to be turned on in the morning and the last to be shut down at the end of the day.”

LIFE Campus was designed by Vilhelm Lauritzen Architects. The architecture is inspired by DNA strings, Fibonacci sequences, and other scientific and mathematical patterns. The façade features 96 solid oak columns. Major funding for the LIFE Foundation is provided by the Novo Nordisk Foundation. At Integrated Systems Europe 2022, LIFE Campus won an Inavation Award in the “Education” category.

If you are looking for an award-winning audio solution for your education facility, contact us to find out more about Meyer Sound Lab solutions.

ApexPro is the sole distributor of Meyer Sound Solution in South Africa.

Meyer Sound PANTHER Exceeds Expectations at Ed Sheeran “+ – = ÷ x” Tour Launch

Global Stadium Tour Debuts with Bold New Line Array In-The-Round

More than 80,000 Irish fans burst into cheers of jubilation when the first pummeling chords of “Tides” opened each of Ed Sheeran’s two shows in late April at Dublin’s Croke Park Stadium. Though most in attendance knew that the shows were the first of the in-the-round “+ – = ÷ x” (“Mathematics”), Sheeran’s fourth world tour, few outside the production crew likely knew that the occasion also marked the global premiere of Meyer Sound’s new PANTHER large-format linear line array loudspeaker. Supplied by U.K.-based Major Tom, Ltd. and suspended from daringly conceived mast and cable net rigging, the system was anchored by 212 PANTHER loudspeakers. The Dublin shows also were the first anywhere to deploy a Milan protocol AVB network from FOH mix all the way to the loudspeaker cabinets.

Although the PANTHER-based system is substantially smaller, lighter, and more energy-efficient than would have been the case using Sheeran’s prior touring inventory, which was largely based on LEO line array loudspeakers, everybody on the audio production team was confident that the new rig would perform with equivalent results. However, according to Production Director and FOH Engineer Chris Marsh, the Dublin debut suggests their expectations may have been overly cautious.

“One of the main criteria for the tours since we started 11 years ago was that Ed has to be heard clearly at every seat in the venue,” says Marsh. “I’ve always been impressed by how well LEO arrays could bring that sense of intimacy to the back rows of stadiums. And in that regard, I was surprised at how PANTHER, a lighter and smaller box, could do the same. I managed to get a bit of a walkaround during the support acts, and I was immediately aware of the remarkable clarity at distant seats.”

Marsh emphasized that the clarity went beyond simply a fan’s ability to understand Sheeran’s lyrics. “Clarity is usually thought of in terms of the high-end, of sibilants and diction, but PANTHER was also very tight in the low-mids — something you tend not to get when that far away. Everything was present and clear, including subtle nuances like reverb tails, which are often lost at distance.”

For the Croke Park shows, the system deployed 14 hangs of PANTHER arrays in two rings. The six inner arrays each comprised 10 of the “L” long-throw versions and two of the “M” main versions. The eight outer arrays comprised 10 “L” versions, two “M” versions, and two “W” wide-coverage versions. The three horn dispersion configurations enable system designers to tailor coverage for uniform levels and frequency response at various distances.

Controlled deep bass was supplied by six flown arrays of 1100‑LFC low-frequency control elements configured in gradient arrays of 10 each. A total of 20 LEOPARD loudspeakers were set around the circular stage as front fill, with stage bass supplied by six stacks of three 1100-LFC elements in gradient arrays.

Mixing the shows behind his DiGiCo Quantum 7 “was a remarkable experience,” says Marsh. “With LEO, I felt everything sat nicely in the mix, with ample open space. But now I feel PANTHER gives me even more space, an even larger canvas to paint on.”

The primary, Milan Certified GALAXY 816 Network Platform at FOH connects to a Milan End Point (MEP) network, configured as a star topology, which consists of one GALAXY 816 platform, three GALAXY 408 platforms, and 20 Luminex Gigacore 26i switches. As failover backup, the always-active parallel analog inputs were connected via a primary and secondary redundant Milan network with dedicated GALAXY units.

The tour system was designed in consultation with Meyer Sound Director of System Optimization Bob McCarthy, with on-site assistance from Senior Technical Support Specialist Josh Dorn-Fehrmann. Veteran audio system engineer Charlie Albin handles system alignment, tuning, and monitoring duties for each show.

The advantages of PANTHER also extend to the efficiency and sustainability of the tour, according to Marsh. “With the way it rigs, the 14 hangs go up and come down very quickly. Also, we are taking up a lot less truck space than if we were using other systems. The entire audio system fits in only three trucks, which we could not do with a LEO-based system or likely any other. Finally, although I don’t have the telemetry data yet, I’m sure the power consumption is way down from what we had on our previous tour, and those were end-on shows.”

Ed Sheeran’s “+ – = ÷ x” (“Mathematics”) Tour is currently scheduled through March 12, 2023, with 54 shows in Europe and 10 in Oceania. It is the follow-up to the 2017–2019 “÷” (“Divide”) Tour, which currently holds Pollstar’s all-time records for both gross receipts and total attendance.

ApexPro is the sole distributor of Meyer Sound solutions in Africa.

Contact us for all your pro-audio needs

DPA Microphones meet the growing live production needs of the broadcast and AV markets

DPA Microphones will highlight its latest microphone solutions, designed to meet the growing live production needs of the broadcast and AV markets, at the 2022 NAB Show (Booth C8609).

As the rapid adoption of live streaming continues to grow in broadcast applications, speech intelligibility remains at the forefront of all productions. In recognition of the changes in the media landscape, DPA recently released the 4097 Micro Shotgun Microphone and Interview Kit, along with two other important broadcast mic solutions, the 4466 CORE Omnidirectional and 4488 CORE Directional Headset Microphones

“The pandemic has shown us the true importance of being quickly and easily adaptable to a rapidly changing media landscape. These new offerings are a direct result of the innovation and forward-thinking response to the industry, and we are excited to finally present them in-person at the NAB Show.”

Christopher Spahr, Vice President of sales and marketing, DPA Microphones, Inc

Based on the design of the DPA’s groundbreaking 6066 Subminiature Headsets, the new 4466 CORE Omnidirectional and 4488 CORE Directional Headset Microphones feature the brand’s popular 5mm round microphone capsule. These latest offerings provide the security, durability and flexibility necessary for use in broadcast, worship, theatre and corporate conferencing. With a one-size-fits-all design and adjustable boom height and length, the 4466 and 4488 headsets accommodate all head shapes and sizes. A unique, three-point gripping system (above, below and behind the ear) ensures a greater level of security, while the flexible ear hooks provide continued comfort during extended use.  

In addition, the new headsets share the same interchangeable cable and boom options as the 6066 Subminiature Headsets. This includes the 90-degree cable management guide at the neck. The headset frame, boom and capsule have a non-reflective surface for unobtrusiveness and ease-of-use for camera crews. With a high-quality, professional look, the 4466 and 4488 are available in black, brown and beige options.

Featuring the same sonic qualities as the brand’s other supercardioid microphones, the 4097 CORE Micro Shotgun Microphone has been optimized to pick up speech from a distance. Initially designed for plant miking applications, it is ideal for miking in small spaces because of its small footprint and clear audio pickup. Additionally, when selected as part of the company’s new 4097 CORE Interview Kit, which includes a lightweight boom and windjammer, the mic enables journalists to conduct interviews from up to two meters (6.5 feet) away, making it the perfect tool for single-reporter interview applications. 

Featuring a lightweight telescopic boom pole and a Rycote windjammer to provide ideal conditions for outdoor productions, the kit also includes DPA’s 4099 Cold Shoe Mount, a DPA MicroDot cable and a transmitter plate. This plug-and-play solution allows single-operator crews to quickly, easily and safely capture important news and information. 

The sonic qualities of the 4097 CORE Micro Shotgun are particularly beneficial for placing mics in inconspicuous locations as it enables location sound experts to capture sound from anywhere on set. Used in combination with DPA boom mics and lavaliers, the 4097 Micro Shotgun becomes the final piece of a complete microphone package to meet the needs of any TV or film production. 

When used in conjunction with DPA’s lightweight MMA-A Digital Audio Interface, the 4097 CORE Micro Shotgun becomes a complete remote recording package. The interface is a high-quality, two-channel microphone preamp and A/D converter offering mono, dual mono and stereo capabilities. Compatible with iOS devices, Mac or PC computer, the MMA-A provides crystal clear audio in a wide array of remote applications. 

Terminating in a MicroDot connection, the 4097 CORE Micro Shotgun can also attach directly to a transmitter and can be used with the company’s 4099 series mounts, clamps and clips for easy mounting on any surface. Most recently, DPA released the MS4099 Mic Stand Mount, a sturdy and flexible solution for mounting the 4097 onto any mic stand. Borrowed from the design of other DPA mounting options, the barrel of the MS4099 mic holder makes it quick and easy to attach or remove the microphone. In addition, the mount can be turned for vertical or horizontal use, pending application.

Contact ApexPro, the sole distributor of DPA in South Africa, for all your pro-audio needs.

Meyer Sound Audio Reinforcement Systems at TED Conference 2022

Meyer Sound Assures Audio Clarity and Balance at TED Conference 2022

Meyer Sound audio reinforcement systems are used to update system design to extend living room intimacy throughout a 1,200-seat theater.

Meyer Sound Audio Reinforcement Systems at TED Conference 2022
The annual TED Conference returned to Vancouver, British Columbia April 10–14

The annual TED Conference returned to Vancouver, British Columbia April 10–14 for the first in-person gathering of the flagship event since 2019. The TED2022 theme of “A New Era” recognized our changed post-pandemic global landscape, with 80 presenters offering bold ideas and inspiration for a better future. In terms of media technology, the production team built on the solid foundation of the prior event, implementing updates to Meyer Sound audio reinforcement systems for the 1,200-seat TED Theater and other smaller venues clustered inside the Vancouver Convention Centre.

“In terms of audio, it is my responsibility to make sure everything sounds great not only in the theater but also in the broadcast streams and edit rooms. Audio is extremely important in what we do and it’s probably the most complicated element. Fortunately, I have backup from the vast experience of our lead audio engineer, Michael Nunan, and the entire talented audio team, as well as our continuing collaboration with Meyer Sound.”

Mina Sabet, head of production for TED Conferences
Meyer Sound Audio Reinforcement Systems at TED Conference 2022

The TED Theater is a custom-built combination of a broadcast studio and large event auditorium, a pairing that creates challenges for a format that relies on a direct, person-to-person communication style. Keeping all amplified room sound out of presenter mics while making sure all 1,200 seats are blanketed with clear audio has proven no easy task.

“Before Meyer Sound came on board in 2019, we were struggling with sound in the first few rows,” says Sabet. “In that first system, Meyer Sound introduced the MM‑4XP miniature floor loudspeakers, which really worked beautifully and changed the whole audible experience. The only change this year was adding some delay speakers for the very back rows to give a greater sense of intimacy for the furthest seats.”

The 2022 TED Theater update was designed by Meyer Sound Technical Support Specialist David Vincent. The flown system is anchored by twin hangs of 12-each LEOPARD line array loudspeakers with three 1100‑LFC low-frequency control elements for deep bass extension. Four UPQ-1P and two UPQ-2P loudspeakers provide front and side fill, with two rings of 11 total UPQ-1P delay loudspeakers for even dispersion throughout the space.

The floor system comprises nine UPM‑1P loudspeakers for front fill along with — to enhance the sense of close-up immediacy — 34 MM-4XP miniature self-powered loudspeakers.

“The clarity and the uniform coverage of the system really is extraordinary, and this year I noticed how well it helped us deal with soft-spoken presenters. Making sure our audience can clearly hear a soft-spoken speaker has been a significant recurring issue, but this year — with the new microphones and the Meyer Sound PA — the need to take compensating measures has dropped dramatically.”

Meyer Sound Audio Reinforcement Systems at TED Conference 2022

Although most presentations focus on the spoken word, music was woven throughout the conference. “We had musicians on stage every day, including a personal favorite of mine, Duckwrth for the Audacity session,” recalls Sabet. “The sound of his voice and the live instrumentation just blew away the audience.”

The smaller Community Theater, also inside the Convention Centre, was outfitted with a 54-loudspeaker Meyer Sound system — including 12 900‑LFC elements to ensure ample deep bass for the conference’s closing party. Additional Meyer Sound UPJ‑1P and UPM-1P loudspeakers provided audio at more than 50 small simulcast locations spaced around a loop outside the theater. All Meyer Sound systems were supplied by the Los Angeles location of PRG, with installation under the direction of Audio Project Manager Randall Knight.

“There’s no question that our partnership with Meyer Sound has benefited TED Conferences,” summarizes Sabet. “They take a collaborative approach, they listen closely to our needs, and their system designers have the expertise to develop solutions with the best possible audio quality.”

The 80 presenters at TED2022 spanned the full spectrum of creative endeavors in science, technology, the arts, and humanities. Although TED considers all of equal importance, three of the better-known speakers at TED2022 were Al Gore, Bill Gates, and Elon Musk. A scaled-down version of the TED Conference took place in Monterey, California in 2021.

ApexPro is the leading distributor of Meyer Sound Solutions for the African market and beyond.

Contact us to find out if a Meyer Sound Solution is the right fit for your application.

ETC Launches High End Systems Talen

High End Systems Talen

ETC introduces the High End Systems Talen, an automated luminaire that adds visual excitement and big looks to any show with its punchy, rig-defining aerials.

The fixture’s high-intensity beams are created with full additive color RGBW emitters and a large front aperture, resulting in an extremely narrow 3° beam with high center beam candlepower. With infinite pan and tilt movement, Talen moves beyond the positioning limitations of other luminaires.

Talen’s footprint is small enough to fit anywhere in a lighting rig, and it can also be rigged in creative hanging positions. Fixtures can be easily configured and addressed through ETC’s Set Light App. 

“It is exciting to add a simple, affordable beam light to our collection of fixtures. Talen is excellent for adding movement to conventional rigs and supplementing big ones by adding excitement and expanding the designer toolbox. With exciting features like an eye-catching TIR lens producing a tight beam of light, Fixture configuration wirelessly via iPhone and Android devices, and the versatile Talen hinge, Talen is the perfect exclamation point for any show.” 

Matt Stoner, Automated Lighting Product Manager 

For more information on Talen, visit etcconnect.com/Talen

Contact us at Apex Pro to discuss all your technical lighting needs in the African region.