When leading Somerset independent school Downside undertook a complete refurbishment of its Performing Arts facilities, they turned to Revolution Audio to help design bespoke systems that would create both a unique selling point for the school, but also a groundbreaking system that represents a standard of excellence for Music Technology in schools.
Our Installation Team designed systems for four separate rooms - Two classroom installations with foreground music speakers and simple audio switching, a recording studio and a comprehensive Mac-based Music Technology suite.
Music Classroom installations needed to be highly discrete, but also able to offer higher audio quality and sound pressure levels than smaller rooms around the site. FBT's J5A speakers proved a perfect solution; When specified in white with yoke mount brackets, they provide a punchy, detailed sound with a pleasing appearance. Switching was achieved by simple Kramer VS-55A Units, with Kramer HDMI Audio de-embedders also installed for use with the specified Apple TVs.
The Recording Studio is a central showpiece for the new facilities, and despite being compact in size is equipped with a range of high-quality, industry stander equipment. Centrepiece in the Control Room is an Allen and Heath Qu-16 Console, which as well as acting as a Mixer also provides both a USB Interface and MIDI Control of Logic Pro X, including full motorised fader control. Also attached are Genelec 8030B Monitors, on isolation pads which form part of a fully matched studio furniture package.
An Allen and Heath AR2412 Stage Box is deployed in the Live Room, alongside a series of Rack Drawers housing top quality microphones and DI Boxes from the likes of Sennheiser, Klark Technik and Rode.
Finally, the Mac Suite provides both student and teachers with a tremendous facility that has already received interest from other schools for both its power and tremendous ease of use.
The brief to us was to provide a system where every student can attached both a guitar and keyboard to Logic for tracking, but also where a teacher can listen individually to the output of each system to show work to the whole class. This required a comprehensive mixing solution but one that was as easy to use for staff members as possible.
Once again, we deployed the Allen and Heath Qu Series of Digital Mixers as our solution. The Qu-Control app allowed us to design a bespoke user-interface for the system, hiding the underlying processing. Each Mac has an Audio Interface with discrete Main and Headphone Outputs. The Main Outputs feed into a wall-mounted XLR point behind each system, which in turn run through an underfloor tunnel to a Qu-SB Mixer and AR84 Expander in a suspended rack beneath the teacher's table. This device - integrated into Downside's existing WiFi network - is controlled from an iPad in a custom Bouncepad stand secured to the table running Qu-Control.
The teacher can simply select the Mac they want to listen to, with the software programmed to only let one system be live at a time. From there, it is as simple as touching the volume button, whereby an on-screen fader appears to set the level. Behind the scenes, each Mac has had gain matching applied, as well as a Limiter in the unlikely event any components are changed at the front end. The overall system also has Limiting and Master EQ to a pair of wall mounted FBJ J5 Speakers.
All four rooms are already proving superb assets for the school. and the technology supplied and installed by Revolution Audio is allowing for a broader curriculum and richer experience for students, all in a package that gives staff a small learning curve and maximum control. The project has been another example of Revolution Audio's proven track record of engagement with clients throughout the entire process, bespoke and detailed system design and commitment to smooth handover.
To find out how we can equip your venue with the latest in Audio and Visual technology, get in touch today.