Define Body & Mind spins with DSP
UAE: Redwood Technologies called upon its DSP programming skills to solve a problem faced by the Define Body & Mind chain of fitness studios for its new Dubai facility. The studio required a solution to ensure its instructors could be heard over the music during spinning sessions and Redwood provided this with a Biamp Nexia processor.
‘It’s a problem they have in all their studios,’ explained Nathan Williams, director at Redwood Technologies. ‘You have the instructor with a headset microphone who wants to be heard over the top of some very loud music and to be able to get from their position to walk around directly underneath the sound system. They can find themselves in a situation where they have to manually turn the volume down on their laptop to speak and then turn the volume back up again. That really distracts them from their main purpose.’
To avoid this situation, Mr Williams took the automated route using the processing power of the Nexia. ‘The Biamp Nexia offers excellent feedback cancellation and we used a very simple ducker on the microphone to bring the level of the sound down when the instructor speaks and then back up again when they finish,’ said Mr Williams. ‘They had their experienced instructors over from the US branches and within a few hours of testing and working with them to see how they use the space and some programming, they were blown away by what we could do with the DSP we specified.’
Away from the processing, the rest of the system includes Tannoy DVS 6 speakers and VSX10 subs powered by Lab.gruppen amplifiers. Instructors use a Shure headset mic which has been designed for fitness.
While the processing solved one problem, there was still another major issue for Redwood to solve. The fitness studio has two very different spaces, the rev room features 40 bikes for spinning classes and required a powerful audio solution. Meanwhile the body room is used for yoga and quieter classes and needed to be completely isolated from the louder space.
‘In the spinning room two walls are full height windows and a third wall is a complete mirror. There is a hard floor, hard surfaces and an open ceiling with ductwork and metal framing. It did sound pretty bad initially,’ said Mr Williams. ‘We fitted in some absorption in the corners of the room to dampen and retain a lot of the bass in the rev room and the doors have all got air-sealed pads on them so when they are closed it isolates them properly.’
With both the acoustics and the processing solved, the studio is reportedly very happy with the work done. ‘With some very clever DSP we were able to exceed their expectations. They were really impressed with what we did in the end,’ concluded Mr Williams.