Martin Audio breathes new life into an old cottage
September 17, 2018
AUSTRALIA: Once a humble cottage, the Alcott – or Old Cottage – is now an entertainment hub for the Lane Cove Community in the northern suburb of Sydney. Transformed over decades, the stylish community club was built as memberships had tripled in recent years. Comprising a gaming area, bar, restaurant and function room on its three levels, the interior design also incorporates furnishings and fixtures from the original club created in 1957.
Three weeks into his tenancy as venue manager, Ty Younger reflects on the challenges the newly opened Alcott has faced. Heralding from Portsmouth in the UK, Mr Younger is refreshingly not the sort who sugar coats his sentences or codes them within three letter acronyms. ‘We experienced the usual teething problems before and during opening,’ he expresses candidly. ‘However, the A/V system has proved to be extremely straightforward to use and we’ve had no problems regarding its functionality.’
Following a request from Solvie’s Jason Robertson, Parity Technology Consulting had undertaken specialist A/V consulting for the project. Following careful and detailed requirement analysis, a full evaluation of A/V solutions was conducted. Parity’s lead consultant, Andrew Hicks, led the project. ‘Considerations included the low ceilings, wide room dimensions, interior design aesthetics, weatherproofing and the ability to host DJs with a “feel the bass” requirement. As a result, we evaluated many different options currently available on the market to strike the right balance with a mindful eye on budgetary limitations.’
Following the works, the dust has settled and the abundance of interior shrubs and plants dotted around the Alcott are starting to bed down and take root. Fulfilling the contract to install the specified audio and video technology fell to Sydney-based systems integrator, Intellect Projects Group Pty Ltd. The musical ambiance is enhanced by a Martin Audio CDD (Coaxial Differential Dispersion) install series, delivering improved coverage and consistency to all three levels. While CDD5W 5-inch cabinets have been wall-mounted within the street-level gaming area, larger 6.5-inch cabinets adorn the main level Spritz Bar and Alcott dining room.
Neighbours may have vented their anger with regards to the double-parking practices of some members, but there have been no complaints directed towards the outdoor speaker system. Mounted on weather-resistant brackets, the CDD5WTX-WR and CDD6WTX-WR weatherised variants meet an IP54 rating. ‘The directivity of the speakers is contained within the club with a minimal of spillage,’ explained Mr Younger. ‘They create an excellent ambience and I can easily change the musical selection via the Secret DJ app on my smartphone.’
Eight CDD8W wall-mounted cabinets provide the primary audio reinforcement to enhance the LG 75-inch visual displays and NEC P502H projector in the upper-level function area. An extensive ceiling loudspeaker solution consisting of Quest MXC601 units was selected to supplement the main loudspeakers, primarily for when the rooms are combined. Corporate events, private parties and weddings can be catered for in the divisible Sirocco room, while X115B single 15-inch subwoofers enhance the lower frequencies of the 120-seat capacity divisible venue. Capable of seating up to 30 guests, flexibility of use in the smaller Terrazza venue can be enabled via Extron and Attero Tech wall interfaces hosting VGA, HDMI and audio inputs. Speeches and presentations can draw on Shure SLX wireless microphone channels. The A/V and lighting parameters of both rooms can be managed from an iOS touchscreen over Wi-Fi to the Crestron Control CP3 processor.
DSP functionality and settings are configured and stored in two linked QSC Core 110f DSP processors. Should it be required, future expansion can be provided. The DSP solution integrates eight Flex channels offering greater functionality with Layer 3 routing and SNMP monitoring. The Alcott DSP functionality features level control, source mixing and microphone audio inputs. In addition, an audio source can be routed to any zone via Q-LAN within the venue, while room combining is also provided from the simplified GUI.
While the bulk of the CDD speakers draw their current from four QSC GX5 700W 2-channel amplifiers in the lower-level rack room, the six X115B subwoofers require power from two higher-specification GX7 models. QSC GX3 together with Lab.gruppen E5.4, E4.2 and E8.2 make up supplementary amplifiers. The QSC inventory is completed with a PS-1600G Q-Sys 16-button desk-mounted paging station, outfitted with a gooseneck microphone that is able to page any of the multiple zones across the venue.