Jands chooses Shure and Furman for Parade Theatre modernisation
AUSTRALIA: The National Institute of Dramatic Arts (NIDA) in New South Wales has invested in Shure ULX-D digital wireless systems as well as Furman power conditioners, as part of a drive to ensure that its students have the latest technology at their disposal. The equipment was supplied by Australian distributor Jands.
‘We’re expanding our acting course to include a larger stream of musical theatre and so we knew we’d need some wireless headsets,’ commented Felix Kulakowski, audio and video supervisor at NIDA. ‘Jands allowed us to trial a unit of Shure ULX-D and the specs and cost, particularly for 24 channels, were great. Obviously being digital the wireless distribution is so much easier than analogue. For 24 channels of analogue wireless you’d need a hell of a lot of distribution and the Parade Theatre is appalling for RF. Wireless distribution has been a dream because you can theoretically have 16 channels on one Shure wireless distribution system, whereas before you could only get four.’
Previously the amount of batteries that NIDA went through was, according to Mr Kulakowski, quite phenomenal and rechargeable batteries just didn’t work out as they’d get lost or not charge correctly.
‘I like having the four units per rack and that the product runs Dante which means we can run Dante to the front of house console and use the XLR outputs as monitor,’ added Mr Kulakowski. ‘The students will soon let you know the minute something goes wrong with a piece of gear but I haven’t heard anything negative from them regarding the Shure ULX-D. Compared to our original ULX systems, it is definitely a few notches higher in features as well as performance.’
Featuring surge protection, linear filtering technology, and extreme voltage shutdown, Jands also provided the institute with Furman power conditioners to help combat issues with the building’s aging wiring system.
‘The power at NIDA is generally pretty good however being theatre, the biggest single issue I get with every production is that there is always an unwelcome noise,’ Mr Kulakowski explained. ‘Even the tiniest noise in the system will have the director and students complaining especially if it is a quiet theatre production. The biggest thing I deal with all the time is showing students a cleaner way to run their signal chain, adjusting their gain, and bypassing devices. We had a consistent earthy buzz in the Parade Theatre’s sound system for years and it was really hard to get a clean sound in the PA.’
According to Mr Kulakowski, the decision to add the power conditioners to the racks has removed the interference and dramatically improved the quality of the audio signal.