Melbourne rings in the New Year with SAE Audio
AUSTRALIA: SAE Audio sound reinforcement systems were recently put to use for Melbourne's New Year's Eve 2013-2014 ‘midnight live sites’ event, organised by the City of Melbourne Town Hall. The company contracted to design, develop and supply the structure was Event Towers from Gold Coast.
The project comprised of four live sites spread across different locations, (Treasury Gardens, Kings Domain, Flagstaff Gardens and Docklands), each featuring ‘multimedia entertainment nests’ that offered live music from DJs, as well as accompanying visuals and pyrotechnic effects.
Each entertainment nest used one SAE Audio VP active line array system on each corner. Each of the four corners used four V2208P mid/high speakers, one V1212P low speaker and one V1218P subwoofer, and 16 V2208Ps, four V1212Ps and four V1218P subs were also used per nest. The event also made use of one SAE Audio LP26 loudspeaker processor, a 1048 signal distributor and a 2008 power sequencer per site.
‘The company in charge of developing the "entertainment nests" discovered the VP line array at the Prolight+Sound Shanghai 2013 outdoor line array demonstration,’ explained Josep Maria Sans, market development manager, SAE Audio. ‘They soon realised that the VP active line array was the system they were looking for. Its compact size and light weight, along with its easy installation, made it very convenient to fit with the nests’ dimensions, but overall the powerful and clear sound was the reason they decided to move ahead with SAE Audio.
‘It was suitable as it can fit into the most constrained spaces, and two people can easily rig the system,’ he continued. ‘We had to take into consideration the fact that the structures’ event towers folded inside a small container, so there was not space for a big system. Also, for Melbourne's NYE, all four towers had to be set up by the same staff in four different locations in the city, so it was necessary to have a light-enough system to make it easy and fast. Plus it’s an active system, making it even simpler to install/uninstall whilst saving on amplifier rack space.’
Event Towers completed the PA installation along with the structure installation, while Optical Audio supplied, installed and rented the DJ equipment used, as well as monitors, main mixer and recording equipment to the Melbourne Town Hall.
‘I went to Melbourne myself to support them and make sure the system was properly installed and tuned,’ he continued. ‘As SAE Audio is a new brand in Australia, we directly supplied/sold the VP active line array equipment to Event Towers.
‘Melbourne has completed many other New Year’s Eve events in the past, but they were not always convenient as they used to install stages on garden areas of public parks (damaging the surface), and they required a long setup time and a lot of labour for the installation, disturbing the citizens in the park and increasing the cost of these events,’ he continued. ‘Event Towers’ solution is good as it was installed onto small areas, like onto the 3-4m wide walking paths of the parks, so it didn’t damage the lawn and was extremely fast and easy to setup. Another advantage found in Event Tower’s solution was the 360 degree coverage, so the audience could stay anywhere in the park, rather than just at the front of the stage.’
Mr Maria Sans confirmed that the systems ‘performed really well. During the sound-checks several people in the park came to us and said: "this sounds really good!” I recall one guy at Flagstaff Gardens asking one of Event Towers’ members: "Is this going to sound the same tonight?” to which he replied: "Well, I'm not sure if it'll be the same music, but definitely the sound system will be the same!” Also, Melbourne town hall were really pleased with the overall presentation of this event.’