Castle Hill RSL takes A/V in-house
AUSTRALIA: The social club remains a central part of Australian community life providing entertainment and relaxation for its members. Located in the north-western suburbs of Sydney, Castle Hill RSL (Returned Services League) is a six-storey colossus that is spread over 10 acres. It’s a premier venue, which is home to seven versatile function rooms that can be managed via AMX control systems including fixed panels and iOS devices.
One of the multi-purpose venues measuring 18.0m (w) by 25.9m (d) was earmarked for an audio upgrade recently. Several loudspeaker demonstrations were held, but ultimately an L-Acoustics Kara system provided by Hills and installed by Sasha Paceskoski’s projects team at Intellect Projects Group was deemed to be the best for the venue’s requirements. ‘We don’t want to hire in equipment and we don’t want load-ins and load-outs,’ explained Castle Hill RSL group facilities manager, Allan De Paoli. ‘We wanted a loudspeaker system that could handle high SPLs but could perform well for a multitude of requirements from live rock and roll, to comedy, to announcements during weddings, corporate events and such. The Kara was by far the best all rounder.’
An L-R system combining five Kara cabinets each side has been suspended from the 5.7m-high ceiling on motorised winches for ease of service. This has been supplemented in the low frequencies with the addition of four under-stage SB18m subwoofers. Modifications to the stage and substructure were required to support the newly added subwoofers, which were carried out by the staging division of Intellect Projects Group. Three LA8 amplifiers provide the power and the DSP settings for the entire system. ‘Optimum coverage was provided courtesy of the Soundvision prediction software used by Hills and L-Acoustics,’ offered Justin Baker from Intellect Projects Group. ‘It’s the first time we have installed a system using this software and it worked really well compared to others. From start to finish, we knew exactly what to expect and in some respects, the system outperformed expectations.’
A 32-channel Soundcraft Si Performer console has been installed in the rear upper level control room, which can be monitored via a pair of Tannoy Di6 speakers. ‘It’s a four matrix console and is colour-coded for ease of use. I’m particularly impressed by the Faderglow feature, it makes it very simple to quickly glance over the desk and find a certain channel quickly,’ furthered Mr Baker. ‘We’ve added several presets for ease of use and to minimise setup times.’ Eight channels of Shure ULX-D wireless channels complete with SM58/Beta 58 and Beta 87 handhelds, clip-on lapels and head worn options have also been provided. On stage, JBL PRX712M and Martin Audio F15+ speakers are employed as stage monitors and drum fills respectively.
The system is managed by AMX and Intellect Projects Group deployed the manufacturer's Resource Management Suite to monitor every component of the system for operational awareness. It also provides the function staff with basic operation, so if a simple function hires the room out, it doesn’t require production staff to run the event.
Located in a residential area, the Castle Hill RSL management was naturally concerned with regards to the possibility of noise pollution emitting from the 800-capacity venue. ‘63Hz is considered an offensive frequency for the building, so we had to evaluate the lower frequencies outside during demonstrations,’ explained Mr De Paoli. ‘Prior to the loudspeaker system coming in, however, we had the venue totally reconstructed and an acoustician added diffusers and absorbers to great effect. With this L-Acoustics Kara system, I believe that we can attract a much higher calibre of performer. This is top theatre spec.’