Hailed as an R&B supergroup, New Edition has embarked on their 2016 tour. Nearly 40 years since they first formed, the original six members are once again out on the road. Production for the tour is being handled by Georgia-based Atlanta AV with the assistance of Raleigh, North Carolina-based Alpha Productions. For the tour, they are relying on an RCF TT+ system. Included are 32 TTL55-A three-way line array modules for primary coverage, 12 TTL33-A three-way line array modules for outfills and 18 TTS56-A dual 21” subwoofers set up in cardioid configuration to control low frequencies.
During a recent stop at the Barclay Center in New York with New Edition and Babyface, the RCF live sound team was on hand to provide assistance. “We are happy to assist one of our longest standing touring partners Atlanta AV at one of the country’s premier concert venues,” commented RCF National Sales Manager Tarik Solangi. “This was a very exciting opportunity for RCF, and we appreciate the chance to support these legendary acts.” RCF System Engineer Oscar Mora oversaw the setup, design and system processing. With the 18 TTS56-A, they were positioned in six clusters of three each, creating a cardioid configuration which covered that large arena perfectly while keeping the low frequencies off the stage.
New Edition rose to fame in the early 80s at the forefront of the boy band craze with hits including “Candy Girl”, “Cool It Now” and “Mr. Telephone Man”. The group went on hiatus in the 90s with the various members embarking on solo careers as well as other projects including Bell Biv De Voe and Heads of State. They re-united in 2011. The tour continues through the end of summer.
RCF UK has announced the appointment of SigNET (AC) Ltd, leaders in life safety audio communication (voice alarms), as its Specialist Distributor in the United Kingdom for the DXT 3000 Emergency Evacuation System.
In addition to the Italian manufacturer’s EN 54-16 certified DXT 3000, SigNET will also be able to offer sales of RCF’s associated EN 54 certified Voice Alarm products into the Fire Alarm and Security Systems market within the UK. These were shown for the first time on stand G140 at FIREX International 2016 (London ExCeL, June 21-23).
The DXT 3000 system integrates amplification, control, routing, line monitoring and power supply in a compact, wall-mounted cabinet for single- or multi-zone applications. A wall-mounted emergency microphone and controller are also available, as is a desk-mounted paging microphone.
Stated Phil Price, RCF’s International Sales Manager for Voice Evacuation Systems, and Commercial Audio/Installed Sound, “SigNET is well known for its AFILS hearing loop systems but also has a strong track record supplying Fire Alarm and Voice Alarm systems, which gives a considerable advantage in this strategic market. SigNET will offer full trade distribution and excellent technical support facilities for RCF in the UK.”
SigNET’s Sales Manager, Tremayne Crossley, confirmed this and added, “SigNET has considerable experience in supplying and supporting Voice Alarm systems ranging from shops with a single evacuation zone through to airports with more than 200 zones. We are very excited that this, combined with the innovative design and competitive pricing of the DXT 3000, will allow us to provide the Fire Alarm market with a simple, effective, fully-compliant voice alarm solution.”
Nine years after his death, Luciano Pavarotti still attracts thousands of fans and followers. The residence of the Master in Modena, Italy, was turned into a Home Museum and inaugurated during last year’s Expo in Italy. Now it has become a permanent project, joining the vast patrimony of Italian cultural and artistic attractions.
A few kilometres from the city of Modena, the ancient villa represents an important part of the tenor’s life and it contains a vast collection of personal items, souvenirs and scene costumes that Pavarotti was particularly fond of. Unreleased pictures and videos are projected in the rooms where the Master spent his last years, and constitute a great opportunity to get to know more directly the artistic and human heritage of the tenor.
The quality of the audio system is a key feature of the Home Museum. Mr. Willy Gubellini, a sound professional who has worked on all editions of the famous charity project Pavarotti & Friends, was charged with providing the audio in the villa’s interiors. RCF’s Ayra studio monitors and EVOX two-way arrays were installed in the Home Museum under his guidance.
“We are using two EVOX 5 systems for the rooms where unpublished works and clips of the Master’s life are projected,” Willy explains. “It is a portable compact two-way system, with two 2’’ drivers and a 10’’ woofer. The speakers can easily be moved should it be required. Another important feature is that they were designed with particular care to vocal frequencies, in order to amplify them with the utmost accuracy and precision; this ensures excellent reproduction of the masterpieces sung by Luciano Pavarotti.”
The Ayra studio monitors are installed in several rooms of the Home Museum and their positioning guarantees the best audio coverage, while minimising the visual impact. Models chosen are eight units of Ayra 5 and Ayra 4, the smallest of the series, together with two Ayra 10 active subwoofers. Willy Gubellini stated: “Ayra studio monitors allow precise detail on all frequencies, and the use of subwoofers has strengthened low frequencies. We managed to obtain an exceptional quality of sound, comparable to a recording studio.”
A crowd of more than 10,000 party-minded folks gathered at the Stoppelmarkt in Vechta, Germany, for the premiere installment of the “Tante Mia tanzt” – “Aunt Mia’s Dance” – electro festival on May 5. Staged for the first time by the local agency plus2event, the festival was to be something very special from its inception, with a star-studded line-up, a unique stage, spectacular special FX and top-flight sound reinforcement for all areas.
The promoter's lofty aims were achieved, as the enthusiastic feedback from festival-goers would attest. The outstanding line-up with top acts such as Echo award-winners Lost Frequencies, Belgium’s Headhunterz and the US collective The Chainsmokers certainly did its part to wow the audience, as did the main stage, which was tricked out to look like a supersized portable radio. This unique design is the most striking product of Thomas Wernikowski and his team's painstaking efforts, but their rigorous attention to detail was everywhere to be seen throughout this well-planned and executed festival.
Acoustic Sound, another local outfit from Vechta, held up the technical end with equal aplomb. To this end, the audio service provider opted to deploy brand new RCF systems.
The crew equipped the main stage, dubbed “Aunt Mia's Dance Garden” by the promoters, with two sets of 12 HDL50-A 3-way active line array speakers and 18 SUB9007-AS dual 21" subwoofers in paired clusters. It was the first time this type of rig was rolled out in Germany. Touring & Theatre series TTP5-A point source enclosures served as in-fills, with front-fill support provided by stacked TTL33-A line array speakers of the same series.
Flown double clusters of TTL6-A units, another brand new 3-way active line-source speaker, covered the floor in “Aunt Mia's Vestibule”, otherwise known as the festival tent. TTL33-A line array modules were used as fills to augment the TTL6-A units. Six double stacks of TTS56-AS dual 21" subwoofers held up the low end.
DJs were treated to a monitor system consisting of TT25-SMA and TTP5-A point sources for the side PA. The artists had nothing but lavish praise for this system's performance, and the clear, punchy sound in the audience areas also got rave reviews.
Learn more about the HDL50-A at www.hdl50-a.com
When the top eight Esports Championship Series 1 league teams lined up for the finals at SSE Arena, Wembley, in front of enthusiastic crowds of gamers, it presented audio production company Nitelites with one of their most unusual and demanding challenges ever.
Fortunately they had recently purchased RCF’s flagship TTL55-A active line array, further boosting their vast inventory of the Italian manufacturer’s systems. And after flexing its muscles on various stages at the recent We Are FSTVL event they were ready to introduce it to the famous London venue over the three-day event — brought in by the same production company, Sibar’s Simon Barrington.
Nitelites director Andy Magee says that any thoughts that the high power, three way system would be in cruise control were banished once the system received feeds from the Counter Strike warfare game via the master computer. “The RCF system was so powerful, that had we not used heavy compression, we would have been nailed to the wall with the sound of gunfire,” he said. “But the transient delivery of the system for things like violent gunfire was unbelievable.”
The other challenge was dealing with the unusual way the SSE Arena was laid out, to accommodate a vast backstage area hosting 40-50 PC’s, a warm-up area and battery of commentators with headworn mics. “It was set up with the razzmatazz of American football and the event was screened live on the web,” he said.
But it made the rigging of sidehangs impossible, and thus the front facing left and right PA had to perform full coverage duties, firing 50 metres to the back of the auditorium while at the same time wrapping in the wider off-axis spectators — a feat which it pulled off magnificently over the three days.
With Mike Platt mixing at front-of-house Nitelites designed the system based on 16 TTL55-A elements per side with six of the TTL36 flown bass set behind the main hang for LF extension. “That worked really well in transmitting the realism of the gunfire and took the frequency range down below 30Hz with the various explosions.” Part of Nitelites’ stock of RCF TTL33-A line array enclosures were also used for infills.
Equally satisfying was the fact that the commentators backstage in newsroom-like positions were liaising with presenters outfront, who had their backs to the PA. Said Mike Platt, “As the audience got louder and louder, I needed to give around a 12dB boost for the commentators — but I was able to do so with no feedback whatsoever.
Generally, the system was run fairly flat — barring a couple of shelving filters. “I tailored the system EQ to the tonality of the presenters mics,” he said. “I was really impressed with the degree of control I could have over the system.”
The Nitelites rig was also able to satisfy the players in their soundproof booths backstage by having all the subs designed in reverse cardioid broadside array. This included 12 of the 21” TTS56-A subs, set in two stacks either side of the stage thrust, with two elements in each stack rear-facing to cancel the extreme LF being transmitted towards the soundproof boxes on stage.
Finally, said Andy Magee, having RDNet, RCF’s proprietary monitor and control platform on board was another major advantage. “Having multiple presets for throw distance and so on was fantastic, and we were able to use the onboard EQ, delay and cardioid settings.”
And so it wasn’t only the massive wall-to-wall LED screen, with its narrow pixel pitch, that won the plaudits. Aside from the exemplary sound system, Nitelites also provided rigging services and over 200 lighting fixtures for the event.
Summing up, he concluded, “This event gave the system a really good work-out — the impact produced by the TTL55-A and TTL36-A flown bass was just incredible. The system proved ideally qualified for the job, and because it fits within production budgets, it is already providing to be a wise investment.”
In fact so busy has the company been, that on a single day last month no fewer than 288 of their RCF speakers were out of the warehouse and on duty at various events.
The Italian singer-songwriter Francesco De Gregori started his new tour on June 1st with a truly unique event – a free concert in the spectacular old town of Correggio, Italy. Fans of all ages crowded into the main street, corso Mazzini.
The main system comprised the RCF TTL55-A active line array, with two L/R line arrays with eight modules in each. Francesco De Gregori’s show was supported by local rental company Piano e Forte, whose owners Gustavo and Roberto Ferretti commented: “The TTL55-A provides a very high performance both indoors and outdoors. It is powerful, clear, easy to install, extremely efficient and has enabled a quick configuration thanks to the integrated processor and reduced cabling, thus making the set up really easy here in Correggio.”
Eight modules of TTS56-A active subwoofers with neodymium woofers were used to reinforce low frequencies. With two 3400 W amplifiers, the TTS56-A are extremely powerful and ensured a distortion-free reproduction for the entire area of Correggio’s old town.
The unstable weather did not discourage the many attendees and nor was it an obstacle for the audio equipment, thanks to the precision design and manufacture of RCF’s Touring and Theatre products, made with highly resistant cabinets and suitable for large outdoor concerts.
The concert in Correggio was the first date of De Gregori’s summer tour, titled “De Gregori sings Bob Dylan – Love and Theft”. The Roman songwriter enthralled the audience with a thrilling interpretation of some the best known songs from his repertoire – La Donna Cannone, Pablo, Rimmel, La Storia and many others – and several Italian versions of Bob Dylan’s pieces, taken from De Gregori’s latest album.
Long bursts of applause and encore requests confirmed the public’s enthusiasm, and the overwhelming success of the concert. Among the public was a special guest of honour, Italian superstar Luciano Ligabue, who enjoyed the show from a window in corso Mazzini. The famous rocker is also using RCF’s flagship TTL55-A system for all his live shows, including last September’s record concert in Reggio Emilia, in front of more than 150,000 people.
Italian radio station Radio Subasio has marked its 40th anniversary by choosing RCF’s speakers for the celebration concert in the antique Cathedral Square of the city Perugia, where it is headquartered. Around 120,000 people from across the country attended the massive free party on May 14th. Cathedral Square turned into a concert arena for the occasion, with some of the best know Italian artists, creating an unprecedented “Spectacular Birthday”, the organisation of which required the collaboration of the city council.
Performing on stage at Radio Subasio’s party, among others, were Alessandra Amoroso, Max Pezzali, Tiromancino, Francesco Renga, Fiorella Mannoia, Roberto Vecchioni, Zero Assoluto, Ron and Alex Britti.
The technical support for Radio Subasio’s anniversary was provided by local rental company Piano e Forte, owned by brothers Gustavo and Roberto Ferretti. The RCF audio system was carefully designed to guarantee a homogeneous coverage of the entire square and the nearby road, corso Vannucci, that was included in the concert area. The products specified were from the RCF Touring and Theatre Series – the same as used for Italian superstars Ligabue and Vasco Rossi – and provided outstanding sound definition.
Gustavo and Roberto Ferretti said: “We have recently invested in the excellent RCF TTL55-A line array and we are very satisfied. The TTL55-A allows us to best serve occasions like this, thus strengthening our market presence and reinforcing our brand in the sector of big arena and large-scale live event touring.”
The audio system at the “Spectacular Birthday” of Radio Subasio included two L/R clusters of 12 x TTL55-A. 14 units of TTS56-A active high-power subwoofers on the ground reinforced low frequencies, and four stacked units of TTL33-A active three-way line array were used as additional side fills. Furthermore, four delay towers, comprising TTL55-A and TTL33-A, were strategically located at several points along corso Vannucci, in order to allow the public that had been unable to reach Cathedral Square to listen to the concert in high definition. Finally, RCF products could also be found on the stage in the shape of nine units of TT25-SMA and TT25-CXA coaxial stage monitors.
The artists’ voices and music ensured a memorable night for the dense crowds and the whole city of Perugia. Among the highlights of the event were the presentation of Max Pezzali’s and Francesco Renga’s new singles, and the beautiful video mapping show on Saint Laurence Cathedral’s façade, on a surface of around 1000 sqm. A record attendance, a high-level art direction by Andrea Camporesi from Free Event Entertainment & Production company and RCF’s forefront technology sealed the success of the “Spectacular Birthday” of the radio station. Many happy returns to Radio Subasio!
The Kingspan Stadium, home of Ulster Rugby, has completed a major upgrade of its stadium in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The construction of three covered stands are designed to match the existing Premium Stand, with a newly specified RCF PAVA distributed sound broadcast system, linked to a Fire Alarm, to create a communications infrastructure that complies with BS5839 Part 8 standards.
System integrators, MGA Communication, won a competitive tender to provide an integrated Voice Alarm and a Communications network, working with RCF’s Engineering Support Group to deliver the solution. RCF’s DXT 7000 Sound Broadcast and Emergency Evacuation System was selected to meet the requirements of the main terraces, corridors, and mass circulation areas, as well as toilets, private corporate boxes, meeting rooms, board rooms and bar areas.
To create a matched system, RCF’s premier IP55-rated P3115T speakers were chosen for the three new stands, after which MGA Communication also retro-fitted six clusters of the twin speakers in the existing Premium Stand.
Six sets of twin RCF speaker clusters have been deployed in the new Grandstand with each of the twin clusters providing an available vertical dispersion of 120° (90° horizontal) on all four axes of the ground, while four clusters of twin RCF P 3115T are suspended under the roof lips at both the Memorial Stand and Family Stands behind the goalposts.
In all cases, supporting bracketry was fabricated by MGA with a safety support offered by a catenary stainless steel tether system.
Gerald McKeown said the RCF solution had been chosen for its ability to fulfil several key criteria, such as meeting the necessary IP and PAVA application rating, as well as having the required dispersion, output and frequency response. It also met the necessary price point.
In particular, the external terrace speakers provided the required adjustability to achieve full terrace coverage, ensuring that the beam-width overlapped with the adjacent cluster, with a sharp 4dB drop off at the pitch as required. All of these characteristics were previously identified in the EASE model.
Ulster Rugby Stadium Manager, David Boyd, stated, “The new sound system is delivering perfectly in terms of the match day scenario and the speech intelligibility is a lot better,” he confirms. “What we had previously was a stand-alone PA and separate alarm system which was not linked. There was no automation instruction for evacuation should the fire alarm go off.”
He confirmed that the existing PA system in the Premium Stand also needed upgrading as it was too unidirectional and rolled off at the terracing. “With all four stands linked into the PA we have full flexibility because it is important that each stand can be operated separately”, he said.
The Master Control Room is located in the Family stand, managing the four PAVA equipment racks (one per stand), with both data and control lines linked with fire-resistant copper and fibre, in a stadium which now seats an impressive 18,150 people.
Meanwhile, the general concourses are served by RCF PL 70EN ceiling speakers, RCF DU 50EN wall cabinet speakers as well as the RCF P 3115 speakers used for the terracing, while the RCF DP range of weatherproof projector speakers broadcasts information for those leaving and arriving at the ground. RCF’s UP 8000 energy efficient Class D series has been deployed to power the systems.
In summary Gerald McKeown states, “ With RCF we have a great relationship, as can be seen by the support they gave us when we installed the [nearby] Bangor Aurora Aquatic and Leisure Complex.”
“We are extremely happy with the product. There are up to 40 or 50 parts of a system that need to be compliant and we are comfortable that RCF can meet that requirement.”
Prague-based fire alarm specialists, Avalon s.r.o, have been appointed exclusive distributor in the Czech Republic for RCF’s EN54 Voice Alarm Systems, with effect from January 2016.
The agreement was signed by RCF’s International Sales Manager (Voice Evacuation Systems, Commercial Audio and Installed Sound), Phil Price and Avalon Business Director, Filip Langer.
Celebrating its 20th anniversary last year Avalon was originally set up to specialise in fire alarms, PAVA and special detection systems — and represents a number of brands and technologies on an exclusive basis. The further move into voice alarm and commercial audio is seen as a natural extension to their core activities, with EN54-compliant systems now being so widely specified.
The company had been aware of RCF’s reputation, both in the music industry, and the fact that they had appeared on the specification for Germany company, the REWE Group’s Penny Market development in Italy. Continuing their development across Europe, the Group now in the midst of a 350 store roll-out of the discount supermarket chain in the Czech Republic.
Each store features between 12 and 24 RCF PL6X coaxial ceiling speakers powered by RCF AM2160 mixer amplifiers — and when complete, the total number of PL6X units deployed will be just under 5000. “We have completed more than 200 shops already and rented a store specifically to handle the logistics,” said Filip. “It is a huge number of boxes to be shipped around the country.”
Initially Avalon will be stocking and fully technically supporting RCF’s DXT3000 emergency evacuation system and are also actively quoting projects for system integration clients on the larger DXT9000 system. In fact Avalon have already completed projects with the DXT systems, the first of them at the end of last year.
“We have already undergone a complete product demo and evaluation of RCF’s EN54 and commercial install audio products in Reggio Emilia,” Filip Langer confirmed. “RCF offers full technical training and their business support is also extremely good. They will be a key supplier for Avalon as we have previously not had a competitive audio system in our portfolio. This now makes it complete.”
Phil Price added, “We are delighted to have Avalon on board. This new dimension to their activities perfectly fits with their existing expertise and is the final component in in a complete Fire Alarm/PAVA evacuation package.”
Almost 6 million viewers watched the Christmas live show “Panariello Under the Tree” on Italian TV channel Rai1, featuring the national star, comedian Giorgio Panariello.
The show was broadcast on December 22-23 from the Modigliani sporting arena, that had been transformed for the occasion with spectacular scenic design and a majestic Christmas tree. The audio system, made with RCF’s Touring and Theatre speakers, was provided by Agorà rental company – also responsible for the rigging structures, lighting and video LED.
A 10-men band and a gospel choir performed during the Italians’ favourite Christmas TV show, hosted by Giorgio Panariello together with several guests, including Hollywood actor, Matt Dillon.
The audio system was made of: • 6 x 12 TTL55-A active three-way line array module, for the terraces and tribunes. The clusters were flown at 14 m height and positioned in a semicircle; • 4 x 6 TTL33-A active three-way line array module, for the stalls. The clusters were flown at 12 m height and positioned around the central platform of the stage, creating a smaller semicircle; • 8 ART 312-A active two-way speaker, positioned under the stage and along the central platform to reinforce the closest areas; • 14 TTS56-A active high-power subwoofers in end fire configuration, under the main stage.
The shape of the stage, with a long platform ending at the centre of the public area, saw the use of several condenser headset microphones in difficult positions, and a cluster height that had to be at least 10 m in order to be out of sight of the cameras. All these factors complicated the task of maximizing intelligibility without impacting negatively on the mic shooting.
The acoustic project was carefully designed by RCF and Agorà technicians, who managed to transform the difficult location of a sporting arena into a TV studio with good audio quality. The audio system was designed with a concentric structure, that allowed the sound to reach the entire audience (around 5000 people) from close points, with accurate tuning in terms of cluster timing. “We started from the closest cluster to the stage and then aligned the following ones, finding the right compromise in terms of delay in the points of maximum overlap,” states Agorà’s PA Manager Antonio Paoluzi.
The result was extremely successful. The sound of the band, the chorus and the guests performing on stage was full and precise, without any reverb. Speech amplification was effective and ensured a constant and pleasant presence of the voices, leaving the TV production team and writers extremely satisfied. The excellent intelligibility, both at low and high volume levels, ensured a free management of the microphones, without annoying feedback.
“We genuinely managed to recreate the acoustic conditions of a TV show,” concludes Paoluzi. “The RCF TT+ system really proved its quality in a sonically difficult environment such as the Modigliani sporting arena.”
Details of PA system: • 6 clusters x 12 RCF TTL55-A • 4 clusters x 6 RCF TTL33-A • 8 RCF TTS56-A sub 21” arc delay • 2 x 4 TTS56-A sub 21” stack
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