Archive for July, 2013

System Integrators and Contractors Embrace Lowell Manufacturing

PACIFIC, MO, July 17, 2013 — Products from Lowell Manufacturing Company, a U.S. manufacturer of professional A/V products for over 65 years, have become a leading choice for contractors and system integrators nationwide. From boardrooms and professional multimedia areas to arenas and houses of worship, educational facilities, theaters and other fixed installation projects, Lowell rack, power and audio products continue to be specified by high-profile audio/video professionals.

“My relationship with Lowell Manufacturing actually began with my father being friends with company founder Ben Lowell, so I not only have a business relationship, but a long-term personal relationship with the company,” stated Mark Schultz, Systems Engineer for Minneapolis, Minnesota-based Parson Technology, a leading system integrator that established its business in 1927. “As a system integrator designing and installing audio visual and voice data, as well as security systems for healthcare, houses of worship, casinos and gaming, retail stores, sports complexes and hotels and resorts, we employ Lowell equipment racks and ceiling speakers on most of the projects we do for our clients. Lowell has an extremely wide selection of products that not only are high quality and cost effective, but they also have convenient features that are not available from other manufacturers.”

DeWayne Rains, Vice President of Operations for Nashville, Tennessee-based Audio Electronics, Inc. (AEI), a full service Audio/Visual Company specializing in providing national retail, restaurant and hospitality clients with customized In-Store Music & Messaging Networks and Digital Signage solutions, echoes Schultz’s comments: “I’ve been working with Lowell for many years and specify their rolling floor racks, wall-mount racks and shelves, and wall-mount and rackmount volume controls for a variety of installations. The fact that their products are made in America is always important to us, plus John Lowell and his team take great pride and care in what they do — and that comes through when you get a Lowell product. Their customer service is second-to-none. I can order a rack for one of my clients like JCPenney, Cracker Barrel or O’Charley’s and have it the next day. That’s customer service.”

“We’ve standardized our installations using Lowell racks and accessories,” stated Jon Baker, President of Springfield, Missouri-based Audio Acoustics, a leading installer of premium sound and video systems since 1968 specializing in commercial audio/video, health care and education market sectors. “We use several types of their eight-inch ceiling speakers, including the LT series, for music and paging. We’ve been working with Lowell for over 10 years because they offer an extremely comprehensive range of quality products that we feel sound good, install easily and are competitively priced. When you compare the quality of a Lowell product to other choices on the market, with Lowell, you are getting a real value in every sense of the word. Additionally, they offer great customer support, are very responsive and truly understand our needs as a system integrator.”

For more information, please visit www.lowellmfg.com or e-mail Lowell at sales@lowellmfg.com.

AES Draws World R&D Community for Sound Field Control Conference

— AES’s 52nd International Conference titled “Sound Field Control – Engineering and Perception” in Surrey, Guildford, UK, September 2-4, 2013 —

New York, NY, July 16, 2013 — Registration is now open for the first AES international conference on Sound Field Control, slated to take place at the University of Surrey, Guildford, UK, September 2-4, 2013. Held within a short distance of London’s major international airports, this conference aims to bring together engineers and perceptual scientists from around the world to share their research in this fast-moving field, and to discuss the numerous interactions between acoustics, signal processing, psychoacoustics and auditory cognition.

Inviting the world R&D community to attend the conference, chair Francis Rumsey said, “This is an unmissable event for anyone involved in the active control of sound fields, whether as a researcher, developer or practitioner. This is going to be a major theme of audio product development and design over the next ten years, and the personalization or customization of sound fields using audio technology is a becoming a really big deal. We’ve accepted over 40 contributions, including a number of invited presentations from the leading minds on beam forming, arrays, sound zones, spatial issues, perception and signal processing, and there’ll be some fascinating workshops and demos for people to experience the issues first-hand.”

Three fine keynote lectures from leading experts go hand-in-hand with live demonstrations and workshops on the interface between perception and engineering in this fast-moving research field. Keynotes include Professor Steve Elliott of the ISVR in Southampton, UK, who will give an introductory tutorial on “Active control of sound fields”; Professor Armin Kohlrausch of Philips Group Innovation and Eindhoven University of Technology, Netherlands, on “Evaluation of spatial sound fields; how far can we get with perceptual models?”; and Dr Frank Melchior, Head of Audio Research, BBC, UK, to discuss “Creative Sound Field Control.”

Sound field control enables the active management of audio delivered in an acoustical environment. Sophisticated signal processing and reproduction tools increasingly enable the engineer to tailor the sound field for specific applications, occupancy or listeners’ requirements. This can include the creation of independent sound zones in listening spaces, the active control of noise, personal communication systems, the electroacoustic manipulation of auditorium acoustics and the generation of complex spatial sound fields using multi-channel audio systems.

Discover the preliminary program and make your travel plans now to visit the UK in early September. Low-cost accommodation has been arranged in high-quality ensuite university rooms for conference delegates. Find out more and register for the event at the conference website: http://www.aes.org/conferences/52/. Find us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/AES.52 and follow us on Twitter at #AES_SFC.

Auralex® Offers ELiTE Custom Fabric System™ (ELiTE-CFS™)

— Designed to meet the needs of the end user, both acoustically and aesthetically, each Auralex® ELiTE-CFS™ is completely custom-designed —

INDIANAPOLIS, IN, JULY 15, 2013 – Auralex® Acoustics, Inc., the world’s leading brand of acoustical treatments and currently celebrating its 35th anniversary, offers its ELiTE Custom Fabric System™ (ELiTE-CFS™). ELiTE-CFS (ELiTE stands for Engineered Listening & Theater Environment™) is Auralex’s proprietary, fully engineered turnkey acoustical treatment system, fully individualized per a project’s needs. Each installation is custom-designed by Auralex’s expert engineers, then installed and fabricated onsite by authorized, experienced craftsmen. Auralex coordinates all pre-installation details, thus minimizing the disruption of other contractors and ensuring the job is completed on schedule. Utilizing a patented retention channel and custom installation process, an ELiTE-CFS installation will turn any room into a completely immersive and dynamic listening environment.

Whether part of a conference room, house of worship, custom home theater, professional audio facility or any dedicated listening environment, the ELiTE-CFS will provide the highest level of acoustic control. By enabling the designer to dictate the overall appearance of the custom-engineered system, any aesthetic need can be realized.

David Brune, Auralex Director of Sales, stated, “For each project, the Auralex crew handles acoustical design, woodworking, installation, etc., thus ensuring a well-integrated result. This system is a 100% turnkey solution and includes conceptual renderings, project management and professional installation. Some of our most famous clients, including top recording artists, sports figures, movie stars, Fortune 500 corporations and more, have benefited from custom ELiTE installations. Our quality and service are unmatched in the upscale, custom-installation marketplace.”

The finished look of an ELiTE CFS system is a smooth fabric surface with all the acoustical materials hidden behind the system’s elegant facing. The treatments include an engineered combination of absorption, diffusion, reflection, and bass trapping (features not available by most other competing systems). The Auralex engineering staff, based on physical room modeling and potential on-site visits, carefully diagrams the exact layout and placement of these treatments.

A proprietary and patented retention channel system is the core element of all ELiTE-CFS installations by providing secure mounting of fabric, creating a clean finished edge, and allowing for unlimited design possibilities. There are hundreds of fabric styles and colors to choose from to perfectly meet any aesthetic expectation, all approved for acoustical use and carrying a Class A fire rating.

The overall result is an interior finish that looks and sounds great and will provide an exceptional listening experience for years to come.

To discuss your project with an Auralex application specialist, please email auralexinfo@auralex.com or call 1-800-959-3343. For more information, please visit www.auralex.com.

Lowell Offers LBR Series Rack Enclosures

— LBR Series racks provide contractors and system integrators a cost-effective solution for clients, without compromising strength or versatility —

PACIFIC, MO, July 9, 2013 — Lowell Manufacturing Company, a U.S. manufacturer of professional A/V products, is offering its LBR line of versatile, cost-effective, 19-inch EIA, fixed-rail floor rack enclosures, which offer flexible installation options for A/V, security, data and other applications. Designed specifically for contractors and system integrators who need a high-quality, cost-effective alternative for clients on a limited budget, the all-welded LBR racks, manufactured from 100% certified U.S. steel, support loads of up to 800 pounds on Lowell’s proven, robust structural foundation and feature solid sides with upgraded ventilation capabilities plus a reversible, vented rear door.

Lowell’s LBR rack line is available in depths or either 22 or 27 inches, and in heights up to 44 rack units (RU). Generous cable pathways are provided behind the rear rails (if optionally fitted) in both depths, and there is also ample space to accommodate Lowell’s POWERSTAC™ modular power system and cable management products. For contractors or system integrators needing additional installation and wiring flexibility, the top mounting rails (which are either 7RU or 10RU depending on rack depth) are tapped 10-32 to support various field modifications and can be removed to accommodate extra-large cable bundles.

LBR thermal management features include vented side panels and a reversible, vented rear door. A fully-perforated, Plexiglas or solid front door may be optionally fitted. The upper and lower side panel and rear door vents are designed to accept Lowell’s cooling fan products anywhere along the slotted vent pattern. The racks may also be fitted with a selection of platform bases, with or without casters.

“Our LBR rack series has the ability to satisfy many basic installation issues,” stated John Lowell, Lowell Manufacturing President and CEO. “They’re a versatile, time saving and, most importantly, economical solution for any integrator demanding flexible installation options for clients in audio-visual, security, data or other applications.”

For more information, please visit www.lowellmfg.com or e-mail Lowell at sales@lowellmfg.com.

The Blackbird Academy Prepares to Open Its Nashville Facility with a Helping Hand from Leading Designers Robert and Cortney Novogratz

— Audio recording and live sound school gets professional touch from top NY Designers, set to air on Katie Couric’s syndicated daytime TV show Katie, July 17, 2013 —

— With custom-built classrooms and access to the world-renowned Blackbird Studio, Nashville’s The Blackbird Academy will offer comprehensive instruction and virtually unlimited hands-on access for hundreds of students yearly to the best audio instruction and technology platforms in the industry —

Nashville, TN (July 15, 2013) – In preparation for their first class, Nashville’s The Blackbird Academy got the pro designer’s touch from Robert and Cortney Novogratz, whose handiwork will be seen on Katie Couric’s syndicated daytime TV show Katie on Wednesday, July 17, 2013.

The husband and wife design team, who formerly did business as Sixx Design, are known worldwide from their Bravo docu-series 9 by Design as well as Home by Novogratz on HGTV. The couple have twice been profiled in The New York Times and have been featured in such publications as Real Simple, Better Homes & Gardens, Travel + Leisure, American Way, Oprah, Architectural Digest and Star, among many others.

Located in the heart of Music City, The Blackbird Academy is owned by John McBride and award-winning country recording artist Martina McBride. The school, which has been positioned as the educational gateway to the recording and live sound industries, is spearheaded by co-directors and industry veterans Kevin Becka and Mark Rubel. The Blackbird Academy is based out of Blackbird Studio, Nashville’s premier recording facility and home to top recording artists, producers and engineers. The school will offer an unprecedented level of hands-on education and industry involvement for its students.

“Opening a school has been a dream of mine for a long time,” stated John McBride. “After talking with hundreds of Blackbird Studio interns and hearing about their experiences, I believe we can provide a better and more affordable educational solution than what is currently available, and that offers our students real-world knowledge that they will use moving toward a career of audio recording or live sound engineering. We want to change the world and make it better for the next generation – The Blackbird Academy is just the place to make that happen.”

The Blackbird Academy programs include:

Studio Engineering Program – A 24-week, 700-hour intensive program with classes meeting five days a week, Monday through Friday, with possible weekend workshops. The facilities consist of three recording studios and a large main laboratory/studio dedicated full time to education. The Learning Laboratory seats 30 students and is an audio production space in its own right.

Live Sound Engineering Program – A 24-week, 720-hour intensive program with classes meeting five days a week, Monday through Friday, with possible weekend workshops. The facilities consist of a purpose-built classroom, and students are trained on the latest consoles, PAs and other gear used for touring, medium and small venues and houses of worship.

Photo File: Novogratz_Blackbird.JPG
Photo Caption: The Blackbird Academy celebrates its designer makeover from NY designers Robert and Cortney Novogratz. Shown L-R: Robert Novogratz, Cortney Novogratz, Martina McBride, John McBride and recording artist Gavin DeGraw. Photo by Brian Totoro

For more information please contact us at http://theblackbirdacademy.com or email us info@theblackbirdacademy.com.
You can also call us at:
615-385-2423
1-855-385-3251 Toll Free (International)

About The Blackbird Academy and Blackbird Studio
Located in the heart of Nashville, Tennessee, Music City’s Blackbird Studio is the recording facility of choice for many artists including Jack White, Kid Rock, Ke$ha, Martina McBride, Tim McGraw and many more. The Blackbird Academy is an advanced audio recording/live performance school, specializing in academic instruction for students interested in audio production and live sound. The Nashville campus will encompass the latest in professional audio technology, live sound reinforcement and access to the state-of-the-art Blackbird Studio facilities, including its renowned recording platforms, microphone locker and unprecedented selection of analog and digital recording equipment.

Sennheiser Makes it Easy to Upgrade Wireless Systems with ‘Trade In, Trade Up’ Promotion

Old Lyme, Conn., July 12, 2013: Audio specialist Sennheiser announced its new Trade In, Trade Up promotion in which consumers can trade in their old wireless equipment from any manufacturer and receive a credit of up to $200 toward the purchase of a new Sennheiser wireless system. Customers can learn more and take advantage of the promotion by visiting http://en-us.sennheiser.com/promos.

Rebates are valid on select Sennheiser XS and EW G3 wireless systems purchased from an authorized U.S. Sennheiser dealer between now and September 30, 2013. Following are trade-in rebate values for the various products that are included:

• XS Wireless – $50 rebate
• ew 100 – $100 rebate
• ew 300 – $150 rebate
• ew 500 – $200 rebate

To receive a rebate on eligible products, customers will need to mail the following to Sennheiser following their purchase (postmarked no later than October 31, 2013):

• A completed rebate form, which can be downloaded from the Sennheiser website at: http://en-us.sennheiser.com/promos.
• The original UPC and EAN code, cut from the box (no photocopies will be accepted)
• A copy of the sales receipt, dated between July 1, 2013 and September 30, 2013, from an authorized Sennheiser dealer for a product listed above.
• The old wireless systems being traded for cash rebate (quantity of trades will be matched one-to-one against purchases, up to the quality of new systems purchased).

All rebates must be postmarked no later than October 31st, 2013. For more information, please visit http://www.sennheiserusa.com.

About Sennheiser

Sennheiser is a world-leading manufacturer of microphones, headphones and wireless transmission systems. Established in 1945 in Wedemark, Germany, Sennheiser is now a global brand represented in 60 countries around the world with U.S. headquarters in Old Lyme, Connecticut. Sennheiser’s pioneering excellence in technology has rewarded the company with numerous awards and accolades including an Emmy, a Grammy, and the Scientific and Engineering Award of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

August Burns Red Never Leaves Home Without RapcoHorizon Roadhog Cables

Metalcore Outfit Takes to the Road for Warped Tour 2013 with Full Compliment of Company’s RoadHog Cables and Custom Cables, Splitter Snakes and Guitar Looms

NASHVILLE, JULY 12, 2013August Burns Red is rocking the stage at Warped Tour 2013 with its supply of RoadHog Cables and custom cables, splitter snakes and guitar looms from The RapcoHorizon Company (Summer NAMM 2013, Booth 1112). With five shows per week at tour stops throughout the United States and Canada, from June 15 to August 4, the band is putting its gear to the extreme touring test. Additionally, The RapcoHorizon Company is sponsoring the band’s gear tent throughout the tour.

Whether they are performing at Warped Tour or on their own, the five members of the band rely on the RapcoHorizon RoadHog cables and custom gear to get them through every show. Even with the unique wear-and-tear the band puts on the cables, the RoadHogs have yet to hit a limit.

“Jake [Luhrs, the band’s lead vocalist,] likes to throw and swing his mics around on stage,” explains Jade Roser, August Burns Red’s sound engineer. “The RapcoHorizon Company RoadHog cables are the only ones I have found that can withstand such abuse while still producing great sound. They really allow the band to give the best performances.”

Designed with the touring musician in mind, RapcoHorizon RoadHog cables always work perfectly, no matter how often they are put to use. Built with PVC outer jackets that are durable and thick, yet flexible, the cables feature pure copper conductors and shields. The cables’ flexible jackets ensure that they not only lie flat on stage, but also roll up easily without causing bends. This design ensures that the RoadHog cables provide an advanced sound and reliable operation for every band that takes them on tour.

In addition to the RoadHog cables, Roser and the band members rely on their custom RapcoHorizon gear — including guitar looms, instrument and mic cables and splitter snakes — to provide a pristine sound in a durable enclosure.

“Our splitter always takes a beating, but we’ve never had to replace it,” continues Roser. “When we’re not out with Warped Tour, we use all of our gear at least six nights a week, so it’s great to have gear that can withstand our enduring use. RapcoHorizon also has exceptional customer service. It’s great to have a company we can rely on to be accommodating to our needs, and Lucas [McCulley, RapcoHorizon Marketing and Artist Relations Manager] is always easy to get in touch with when we need him. It’s also nice to be working with a company that provides high-quality, American-made products.”

August Burns Red is an American metalcore band originally hailing from Pennsylvania. Currently signed to Solid State Records, the band was founded in 2003 by a group of high school friends. Its current roster of members includes Luhrs, JB Brubaker (on lead guitar), Brent Rambler (on rhythm guitar), Dustin Davidson (on bass guitar and background vocals) and Matt Greiner (on drums and piano). The band’s fifth studio album, Rescue & Restore, was released on June 25, 2013.

The Warped Tour is a music and extreme sports festival, sponsored by skateboard shoe manufacturer, Vans, with stops throughout all of North America. Created in 1994 by Kevin Lyman, the tour began as a showcase for punk rock music, but has more recently favored a diversity of genres. To add to the complicated audio requirements, each stop of the tour is held in parking lots and fields, where stages and other structures must be built each time.
The RapcoHorizon Company, located in Jackson, Missouri, is one of the world’s largest manufacturers and suppliers of audio, video, home theater, data and telecommunications interfacing products. Comprising RapcoHorizon, Momentum, Pro Co, Pro Co Data, RAT, RoadHog and StageMASTER, each RapcoHorizon Company brand has developed a reputation in many industries for reliability, and superior sound performance. Used worldwide by concert touring sound companies, video and sound contractors, recording studios, system integrators, audiophiles and musicians, the company’s products provide optimal flexibility and premium performance. The RapcoHorizon Company also has a state-of-the-art Custom Shop to modify existing products or build new devices to meet any need. For more information, please visit the company’s Web site at www.rapcohorizon.com.

Vietnam Television Calls on Jampro Again for VHF and UHF Antennas

Sacramento, CA — Jampro Antennas of Sacramento, California has been awarded another contract by Vietnam Television (VTV) to supply two high-power broadband antennas, one for VHF Band III transmission, the other for UHF. Both antennas will provide coverage of CanTho, the fifth largest city in Vietnam, and the largest city in the Mekong delta.

“This follows a major 2011 order for ten Jampro DVB-T (Digital TV) antenna systems that were installed at sites located throughout the Socialist Republic of Vietnam,” said Alex M. Perchevitch, Jampro president. “For many years, we supplied Voice of Vietnam (VOV), the founder of VTV, with radio broadcast antennas. That excellent relationship and the proven field performance of our equipment led to this latest award.”

The JHD-HV4 is a half wave spaced, horizontally polarized flat panel, dual-dipole high-band VHF antenna that can broadcast on Band III at 174 to 230 MHz. Rugged galvanized steel construction ensures many years of dependable performance. The JHD antenna has been proven to have excellent bandwidth and VSWR. It’s ideal for VTV’s broadband/multi-channel op¬erations. Many standard and custom directional patterns are available to fit VTV’s coverage requirements.

The JUHD UHF antenna was selected by VTV for two primary reasons. Due to a modular design, it gives VTV flexibility to configure various elevation patterns so coverage can be customized to suit the topographical challenges of Vietnam which range from flat deltas to mountainous areas exceeding 3,000 meters. VTV engineers worked with Jampro’s technical staff to customize patterns to optimize coverage for the sites.

Secondly, the JUHD antenna’s robust stainless steel construction has proven reliable in hot, wet tropical climates. Fiberglass radomes provide additional panel protection.

Jampro is also providing its own manufactured Proline brand of rigid transmission line for both installations and related RF components.

Vietnam Television, or VTV, is the national television broadcaster for Vietnam. Each major city and most of the 64 provinces have their own TV stations. VTV broadcasts several terrestrial cable, satellite and regional channels, plus an international channel.

About Jampro
Jampro Antennas Inc., established to answer the need for quality broadcast systems at a reasonable price, is a leading supplier of antennas, combiners & filters and RF components for every application in the broadcast industry. Reputed for innovation and customization, Jampro builds each system to the specifications of the individual broadcaster. From the first system delivered in 1954 to those installed today, the Company is committed to consistent performance and quality founded on solid engineering. Today, over 15,000 broadcasters worldwide benefit from the quality and performance provided by Jampro systems. Additional information on JAMPRO can be obtained at www.jampro.com.

Jampro contact: Sonia Del Castillo
916-383-1177 • mailto:Sonia@jampro.com

Press Contact: Desert Moon Communications
Harriet Diener • 845-512-8283 • harriet@desertmoon.tv

Sound Devices Celebrates 15 Years of Industry Innovation

REEDSBURG, WI, JULY 11, 2013 — Sound Devices is proud to announce its latest company milestone, commemorating 15 years as specialists in portable audio and video products for field production. Founded by three industry veterans in 1998, the company continues to fulfill its original mission—to develop products that help customers achieve the highest quality and performance in their field production workflow. Today, Sound Devices’ growing product portfolio of award-winning audio mixers, recorders, preamplifiers, computer interfaces, and video recorders, offer customers a wide range of essential gear for television and film production.

“We are very proud to celebrate our 15 years in the industry,” says Matt Anderson, Co-founder and President of Sound Devices. “The company has evolved into one of the industry’s most trusted companies, due in large part to the hard work and commitment of our staff.” Jon Tatooles, Co-founder and Vice President of Business Development adds, “We also thank our customers for their loyalty, support and feedback, helping us to reach this milestone in an industry where technology is constantly changing.”

Sound Devices entered the industry with its first broadcast-oriented product, the durable battery-powered MP-1 Portable Microphone Preamp. The company introduced the product and made it available for purchase at the 1999 NAB Show. Today, many elements designed into the MP-1 continue to live in later-generation Sound Devices products, including the battery tube design, high-performance microphone preamplifiers, and durable mechanical construction.

In 2000, Sound Devices introduced its 442 Field Mixer, essentially an over-the-shoulder portable mixing console for production, ENG and film. Developed with input from the industry’s top audio engineers, the 442 offered the audio performance, feature set and mechanical construction demanded by customers with higher expectations for audio from the field.

Soon after, in 2003, Sound Devices announced its entry into the portable digital audio-recording category with its 7-Series Recorders. The 722 and 744T began shipping in early 2005. The 702 and 702T followed, and in 2008, the 788T portable, eight-input, 12-track recorder with time code made its debut in the 7-Series family. Numerous accessories such as the CL-8, CL-9, and CL-WiFi have expanded the number of applications for these recorders, along with numerous feature enhancements through firmware updates.

At the 2011 NAB Show, Sound Devices brought its portable digital recording technology to video with the introduction of its PIX audio/video recorders, PIX 220 and PIX 240. With its strong history of developing high-quality products for the evolving production world, this was a natural progression for Sound Devices. The audio circuitry on the PIX 220 and PIX 240 is based on Sound Devices’ award-winning 7-Series digital audio recorders.

As part of the company’s continued evolution and commitment to its customers and community, Sound Devices relocated its headquarters to a new 27,000 square-foot facility in Reedsburg, Wisconsin, in early 2012. Equipped with state-of-the-art technology, the facility enables Sound Devices to continue to develop new, innovative field-production audio and video products with greater operational capacity. The headquarters is large enough to hold training meetings for its sales representatives and distributors, and offers space for permanent product displays designed for training.

Entering its 15th year, Sound Devices’ commitment to innovation has continued with the introduction of the PIX 260i. The rack-mounted PIX 260i is a file-based audio/video recorder that seamlessly replaces tape-based video decks in production and post-production environments. Its extensive audio capabilities include 32 tracks of audio with analog, AES digital, embedded audio over SDI and HDMI, or Ethernet-based Dante. Powerful network control capabilities include browser-based Ethernet machine control and drag-and-drop network file transfer.

For more information on Sound Devices and its innovations over the last 15 years, visit www.SoundDevices.com or www.facebook.com/sounddevices.

Sound Devices, LLC designs and manufactures portable audio mixers, digital audio recorders, and digital video recorders and related equipment for feature film, episodic television, documentary, news-gathering, and acoustical test and measurement applications. The 15-year old company designs and manufactures from their Reedsburg, Wisconsin headquarters with additional offices in Madison, WI and Highland Park, IL. For more information, visit the Sound Devices website, www.sounddevices.com.

P!NK takes off with Sennheiser

International superstar P!NK’s The Truth About Love arena tour is wowing audiences around the world with its incredible mixture of chart-topping tunes, aerial acrobatics, and sheer no-holds-barred entertainment – all powered by audio equipment from Sennheiser. The 140-date 2013 tour sees P!NK perform like never before, flying above the audience, dancing between two stages and diving into water – a demanding high-energy extravaganza that required custom solutions from the audio specialist.

Today’s arena shows offer ever-increasing level of spectacle, fusing sound, vision, special effects and pure performance. In taking to the road with The Truth About Love tour, P!NK has raised the bar even further, with an elaborate game-show themed concert that takes off in every sense – exploding into wild baroque performances and taking to the air with extensive aerial acrobatics driven by a wire system that lets the star travel to every corner of the arena. But how do you maintain great sound and all the emotion when everything is in motion?

Reaching new heights takes innovation:

Monitor assistant and sound engineer, Ben Byford described the challenge: “With this tour, the biggest challenge is that she is so much in the air. This show takes it further than anything I have ever done just because of the distances she can fly over the audience, the height, the movement, including spinning on her own axis. It’s definitely pushing it to a new level – technically and physically for her as well. It was vital to plan for this and get equipment that worked for the job.”

As Byford explained, the production relied heavily on solutions from Sennheiser, including custom prototypes developed specially for the tour: “The whole show is essentially all Sennheiser: every microphone, every in-ear system, every radio system – it’s all Sennheiser. The in-ears we use are Sennheiser 2000 series IEM systems. P!NK uses an SKM 2000 microphone, but with an MD 9235 head. The in-ear piece that she uses is a special prototype that we’re helping to test – a custom-made in-ear with an integrated microphone.”

That custom solution was developed by virtuoso monitor engineer, Horst Hartmann, who worked closely with Sennheiser. He explained that developing a special integrated monitor and microphone was the only way to cope with the highly physical nature of the performance, the aerial stunts and the lifts within the dance routines: “As well as the challenge of the range of motion, we also needed to provide P!NK with a headset that could also work in front of the PA because she is often flying above the audience and through the whole room. Additionally, the microphone had to sound as good as a hand-held one and had to be extremely resistant to feedback, like a hand-held would be.”

A headset with a neckband was ruled out because the set-up time would inhibit costume changes. They also needed a precise fit, as use of a cardioid mic meant that it had to stay in position right at the corner of P!NK’s mouth in order to receive the highest possible intensity of sound. On past tours, the team had used an earset mic taped in position on P!NK’s face but this time the audio team wanted to take things still further: “We came up with the idea of an in-ear with an integrated microphone,” said Horst Hartmann. “I’d seen referees, pilots, and firefighters wearing this but that’s about communication – walkie-talkie rather than the hi-fi quality we demanded. The capsule was already there: that of the HSP 4, an incredible microphone. Working with Sennheiser, we then developed the “hardware” around this capsule.”

Sennheiser developed a microphone that could be attached to the in-ear mould. With the in-ear fixed and securely in position, the attached microphone would stay in place with no adjustments. That was the theory, and in practice the solution proved a match for the demanding performance. Monitor engineer Jon Lewis explains: “Being integrated means that it’s very much set at the right position because it’s custom-made to the curve of her face, so there’s no movement. There’s nothing to tighten or loosen. So once it’s clicked into the in-ear piece, that’s it! This was perfect as any movement would have made things impossible, given the circus-style aspects of the show.”

Hartmann also describes the advantages of developing the whole solution with Sennheiser: “It’s now also one solution from one company, a simple solution that means everything is carried to the transmitter via the same cable. Much better for costume changes: You can take it off very quickly with one click, put a blind cover on it, so the connection is protected and that’s it. Sennheiser developed this just for P!NK’s current tour, and she liked it from the start. No other company offers this kind of product at the moment. And while it’s a prototype, it’s proved reliable – we don’t have any drop-outs when she is flying through the hall. It works perfectly.”

Instrument and ambience mics:

For miking the band, Chris Madden, FOH, and Horst Hartmann drew on the extensive range of wired Sennheiser microphones. The 24” kick drum was miked with an e 901 and an e 902, while the hi-hat and ride cymbal were picked up using e 914s. Two MKH 80s were used as overheads. The guitar cabs were captured with a total of three e 906s. The Leslie speaker was miked by three MK 4s, with two of them positioned at the top of the speaker, and one at the bottom.

In order to capture the audience reactions for the artists’ IEM receivers, Madden and Hartmann used two cardioid MKH 8040 for outside left and right, two MKH 8060 short gun mics for inside left and right as well as two MKH 8070 long gun microphones for far left and right.

A global tour, a universal receiver:

The Sennheiser EM 3732-II wireless receiver delivered a robust backbone to the audio. With a switching bandwidth of 184 MHz, the EM 3732-II can be deployed worldwide. Hartmann explains that its versatility offered a solution that would work perfectly in any venue, in any country: “This is a universal receiver that is capable of working wherever the tour lands: We use receivers that are capable from 600 to 800 MHz and can be used in America, Europe, and Asia. We do need to occasionally change the hand-held transmitters, but have two versions to cover both 600 and 700 MHz. We also love that the EM 3732-II is compatible with the 2000 series as well as the 5000s series transmitters.”

The Truth About Love – partnership counts:

The flexibility of the products and the audio specialist’s readiness to go the extra mile in developing dedicated prototypes has made Sennheiser a true partner to the tour. “Sennheiser are always there for us,” said Chris Madden. “You just have to pick up the phone or e-mail and you’re being supported – no matter what you ask for.” Ben Byford agrees: “There’s no other manufacturer that you feel you can just pick up the phone and ask for advice or ask for new products. It’s definitely the aftersales and the relationship side that makes Sennheiser stand out as a partner.” For Hartmann, reliability is also key: “The most important thing is that the solutions and devices are perfectly reliable. On a tour like this, you really depend on the equipment to perform each and every day.“

“It’s a great pleasure for Sennheiser to be able to support high flying touring artists such as P!NK,” said Pierre Morant, Global Relations Manager for EMEA at Sennheiser, “Taking a hands-on and collaborative approach is the key to making these relationships successful and to delivering the best service and products. In this case, working closely with Horst Hartmann was the key to innovating a new solution that has taken our ability to deliver flawless sound to – quite literally – new heights.“

The Sennheiser Group, with its headquarters in Wedemark near Hanover, Germany, is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of microphones, headphones and wireless transmission systems. In 2012 the family company, which was founded in 1945, achieved a turnover of around 584 million euros. Sennheiser employs more than 2,300 people worldwide, and has manufacturing plants in Germany, Ireland and the USA. The company is represented worldwide by subsidiaries in France, Great Britain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Liechtenstein, Germany, Denmark (Nordic), Russia, Hong Kong, India, Singapore, Japan, China, Canada, Mexico and the USA, as well as by long-term trading partners in many other countries. Also part of the Sennheiser Group are Georg Neumann GmbH, Berlin (studio microphones and monitor loudspeakers), and the joint venture Sennheiser Communications A/S (headsets for PCs, offices and call centres).

You can find all the latest information on Sennheiser by visiting our website at www.sennheiser.com.

Photo captions:
1: The Truth About Love 2013/2014 tour sees P!NK perform like never before – extensive aerial acrobatics are part of her energetic show
(Photo credit: Kevin Mazur)

2: Chris Madden, FOH engineer for P!NK, with Horst Hartmann, monitors (l/r)

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