Dubai’s biggest ever d&b rig for David Guetta

Dubai’s biggest ever d&b rig for David Guetta

Published: MEA

UAE: eclipse Staging Services deployed the largest d&b audiotechnik rig Dubai has seen for the NYE David Guetta performance. The rental house was responsible for the full technical supply of the Media City Amphitheatre concert.

‘This event constituted the largest d&b sound system ever deployed in Dubai,’ said eclipse head of audio, John Parkhouse. ‘It was a pleasant way to finish out a very busy year with a nice large system to a packed venue. I was in contact with David Guetta’s FOH Engineer, Carlos Herreros, well in advance of the load in, so together we fine-tuned the requirements to fully meet his and our expectations. We were very satisfied with the results, running fully AES/EBU and the fully Array Processed system was simply stunning.’

The main system comprised 32 J-series with 16 J-sub, six J-infra and eight V-subs in a sub array. Added to this were eight Y-series for front-fill and eight V-series per side for out-fill. Power was courtesy of 29 D80 and four D20 amps.

An Avid Profile console was called into action at FOH alongside a pair of Avalon 737sp while the system control and analysis was via d&b R1 running on a Mac Mini, two Lake LM44’s remotely operated on a Surface Pro tablet and SMAART Live running on a MacBook Pro with Focusrite sound card and an Earthworks M30 mic.

On stage, David Guetta’s monitors included six dV-Dosc and two dV-Subs running via one Lake LM44 on LA amps. Support act, Madjam, used four d&b Y-series subs and two M4 monitors running on d&b D80s. The DJ kit was a combination of eight Pioneer CDJ 2000 Nexus, two Pioneer DJM 900 Nexus and two DJM800.

‘From the first email I shared with eclipse, I knew this was going to be a great show,’ added FOH, monitor and systems engineer for David Guetta, Carlos Herreros. ‘The audio spec was spot on from day one, and they also sent me several weeks in advance a fantastic Array Calc file with a flawless PA design. So I was able to relax and forget about this gig until show day.

‘Once we arrived on site my suspicions were confirmed and it was a beautifully presented system,’ continued Mr Herreros. ‘John did a perfect job with the system design and optimisation. Any concerns I had he knew exactly how to tackle them. We get d&b many times a year all over the world, and I have to say this has been the best, by far, I have ever had. The amount of detail was superb and beautiful, and the sub array John designed was impeccable and super sweet sounding, without losing any impact, complementing the tops perfectly, and with a great coverage in a very wide arena. I’ve missed John a lot ever since. But even better was the whole of the eclipse crew and production team. They were fantastic. They made us feel very welcome and very much like home. It was a true pleasure working with them all. I can’t wait to go back to Dubai and do another great show with them.’

Away from the audio, eclipse took responsibility for a variety of other technical aspects, starting with the rigging structure. ‘Nothing had to be changed, from the moment the client walked in, not even the trim heights of the trusses,’ said head of rigging department, Neil Spencer.

On the lighting side, there was plenty of gear to catch the eye. The kit included 30 Martin Mac Vipers, 44 Alpha Wash 1500, 24 Sharpys, 35 Atomic Strobes, 73 Sunstrips all controlled by two Hog 4 consoles.

Stage FX and Laser Grafix provided special effects and lasers respectively. ‘It was nice to be able to provide exactly the same laser specification as David Guetta’s European show, giving the UAE audience the same full laser experience which is quite often not the case with UAE concerts,’ stated managing director of Laser Grafix Arran Hopkins.

From the Stage FX side, the event provided the opportunity to use some new equipment. Stage FX specifically purchased Magic FX Stadium Shot X-Tremes for the performance and paired them with a collection of Magic FX Power Shots, Flamaniacs and CO2 Super Blasters XL for intervals of flames, streamers and C02. ‘It was great getting to put our new Magic FX Stadium Shot X-Tremes to use, they performed as to be expected of any Magic FX equipment, rock solid,’ said Rory Inker senior technician for Stage FX.

‘It can be a very tricky path to navigate, balancing the A/V content of the warm up DJ’s prior to the headline act,’ concluded technical production manager, Duncan Shortt. ‘I have been to shows in the past where the number of restrictions both in terms of sound levels, number of lighting fixtures being used, and complete lockout from the video screens prior to the headline act have in my opinion basically spoilt what could have been a spectacular event. The balance which we had with David Guetta’s production team was fantastic though, and there was clearly quite a party in full swing by the time he got to the stage at midnight.’

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