satis&fy worked closely with NEXO to design the system, which required maximum cardioid sub efficiency to minimise spill to the second stage. It also needed to provide even coverage while controlling spill outside of the audience area.
The site itself came with a number of challenges for the team. The truss wasn’t designed to support a flown sub system, and, because of video and photography sight lines, the subs could only be groundstacked 2-high. System design was for main PA hangs of 15 sets of STM, using M46 Main cabinets and B112 Bass cabinets with 2xM28s as downfill. The right outfill hang used 12 sets of STM with 3xM28s for downfill, covering a distance of 80m. As the left side of the audience was bordered by a VIP area, left outfill comprised 12x M28 to improve SPL and coverage control in that zone.
Three delay towers around 80m from the stage flew 9x M28s, each covering around 60m, while two sets of 2x M28s at 120º were locked onto the subs to provide front row coverage.
Another challenge was the off-centre FOH mixing position. The team addressed this by using a side-to-side cardioid sub design, with digital steering to open the horizontal coverage close to 110º. Positioned well within the PA-right coverage area, the engineers were able to hear what the majority of the audience were listening to.
“For us it was a great premiere,” commented satis&fy head of audio Martin Ramrath. “The first really large job with a new sound system is always an important and thrilling event. We had big expectations and have not been disappointed. Sound performance was outstanding, and we just had to set a few specific filters in the system EQs. For me personally, the most impressive thing was the well-balanced and powerful sound. Together with NEXO, we´ve proved that the STM system is a major player amongst festival-sized systems, and we’re really looking forward to our upcoming productions.”
Festival monitoring was an all-NEXO setup, including three deep, two wide, flown STM side fills per side, and three S118 subs on the stage deck below. 26x 45N-12 stage monitors were used as floor wedges and, depending on requirements, were reconfigured throughout the event into single, double and triple wedge setups. The monitor system was driven by 8x NXAMP4 4×4 Powered TDcontrollers.
Reiner Roters, monitor engineer for satis&fy, was extremely pleased with the results from the range of speakers on the stage. “I liked STM a lot, again, it didn’t take much tweaking to get a good sounding sidefill, and the subs were great,” he says. “I was very impressed by the pressure you can get from the S118 using them in a drumfill application, just 2m away from the mic. The DJs and drummers loved their monitoring (2x M28, 2x B112, 2x S118), and it was also good to have the possibility of tilting and aiming the M28s to get sound onto a higher drum or DJ riser.”
Roters was already a fan of the 45N-12s. “For me it’s one of the few monitor speaker systems that you can work with right out of the box without much tweaking to get it loud right away. A good example of its power was using eight pairs to provide a ‘stagewash’ for Outkast. Another monitor engineer had been trying to produce a feedback, given the volume that he already had, but wasn’t able to. It was definitely a good choice to use the 45N-12s.”
NEXO’s technology was supported by a dedicated team of techs: Val Gilbert, Norbert Bund and Reinhard Steger. NEXO’S Joseph Carcopino was also onsite to ensure a smooth implementation of the Dante Network through the 50x NXAMP 4×4 powered controllers. Interface to all FOH consoles was via an Auvitran Toolbox AVBX7 into the Dante network cards in the NXAMPS. Lake LM44 controllers, also all in the Dante network, were used to tune the system.
“Every single touring engineer was impressed with the system,” says NEXO’s system design and support engineer Val Gilbert. “It performed extremely well, and the coverage of the system was excellent, both on the horizontal and vertical planes. Overlap between M46 and M28 zones was close to seamless, and this made tuning and coverage control extremely easy and efficient.”
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