Retail/event multipurpose space
This system design template details an application for a multiuse retail-and-event space. A space such as this requires multiple music sources and volumes along with ease of operation to allow simple transition between modes.
This kind of space commonly has two primary uses. During the day, it promotes one specific business, and at night, it turns into an event space that is rented out for meetings or social gatherings. The system needs two modes: day — with distributed background music covering the whole space, with one micro zone where the music can be reduced in level for meetings — and night, which offers the same distributed sound but at a higher level and with a wider frequency response.
The system for this space uses a PREZONE2 two-zone preamplifier, with possibilities for wall panel control and web app control. Zone one is used to drive eight MASK6C wall-mounted cabinet loudspeakers at low level during the day. Zone two drives two SUBLIME subwoofers so that their level can be independently adjusted for the evening events.
In this example, we need to meet the following requirements:
- The sound system covers a 22m x 12m (72ft x 40ft) space.
- The music can be at low to moderate levels during the daytime. There is an option for higher levels with a wider-frequency response for evening events.
- There is the choice of three music sources. Mono music coverage is acceptable.
- The system is controlled from the device front panel with the option to control from a tablet.
- Wall-mounted cabinet loudspeakers blend in with the venue's design.
- Removable walls can partition off areas so meetings can happen even during times of louder music.
Loudspeaker coverage and choice
The loudspeaker choice is assisted by the production of an Ease Focus simulation.
In this example, the simulation demonstrated that MASK6 loudspeakers work well. Eight MASK6CT-BL loudspeakers give the required coverage, which is above 99dB for 90% of the space.
To allow for an enhanced frequency response, two powered SUBLIME subwoofers can be placed near to the bar and lounge areas.
The main space is driven from zone one of the preamplifier so that the level can be adjusted simply during the day. Zone two of the preamplifier is used to feed the subwoofers directly so that they can be added for evening events.
Note: The front entrance is purposely not covered with any significant audio level so that visitors are not immediately aware of high-level sound.
The electronics rack contains four main devices in this example:
- Music source: A generic combined radio tuner and USB music player plus an external smartphone can be selected by the end user. This could alternatively be a music source supplied by a content provision service.
- Apart PREZONE2 preamplifier: This allows the required music source to be selected, and the level to be adjusted into each zone. In this case, the two zones are used for the top speakers during the day which are augmented by two SUBLIME subwoofers for evening events requiring a wider-frequency response. The front panel controls on PREZONE2 are used by the end user. A tablet is also connected to the PREZONE2 via the building WiFi and ethernet structure to allow for a secondary control surface.
- Apart REVAMP 4240T amplifier: This accepts the line-level signal from the preamplifier and converts it to speaker level. Channels one and two are bridged together and connected directly to seven of the MASK6CT-BL top loudspeakers using a single 70/100v speaker line. One MASK6CT-BL is connected to the main speaker line via a rotary wall-mounted volume control. This allows the user to reduce the level in the private meeting area. The two SUBLIME subwoofers are connected to channels three and four in low-impedance mode.
- The building alarm system: This has a logic output that becomes active in cases of emergency. This logic signal is connected to the preamplifier. When it is active, all audio outputs from the PREZONE2 are muted.
The following describes the PREZONE2 front panel control:
- The main controls are the music level to zone one (feeding eight MASK6CT loudspeakers for daytime use) and zone two (feeding two powered SUBLIME subwoofers). These important controls are large and illuminated with a blue LED ring.
- The second primary controls are the four source selection switches. An illuminated LED ring indicates which sources is currently selected. There is also a space for labels (which are supplied with the PREZONE2), to be applied, indicating the source type.
- Secondary controls are the two mic inputs with recessed level control and illuminated on/off switch.
- A clear indication that an emergency condition is active is available on the front panel
- It should be noted that the music and mic level controls are independent and each directly feed the main output. This reduces the possibility of feedback via the mics when the music level is increased. It also removes the need for an extra master level control.
- A tablet is connected to the local network via WiFi, an ethernet cable connects the network to the PREZONE2
- The PREZONE2 webapp is displayed in a standard web browser on the tablet. No app or special software is required. Any device with a web browser can be used.
- This system allows for simple control of the music level, music source, and mic levels per zone. Indications are also given of signal present and clip, emergency mode and paging mode being active. Custom labelling can be applied for the sources and zones.
- A night mode can be activated. The tablet screen changes to a dark theme to remove light pollution in low-light situations.
Following is a list of Biamp equipment needed for this example:
- 8 - Apart MASK6CT-BL wall-mountable cabinet loudspeakers
- 1 - Apart PREZONE2 stereo preamplifier with two stereo volume and source zones
- 2 - SUBLIME-BL compact wall-mountable subwoofers
- 1 - Apart REVAMP4240T four-channel amplifier, each with 240w at 70/100v and low impedance
- 1 - D-VOL60 or E-VOL60 (70/100v 60w) wall-mountable volume control
- Music sources, as required
Follow Gain Structure best practices to set input and output levels of the music sources and amplifiers.
- Always check the impedance of the loudspeaker line before connection to the amplifier.