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Levels Networks Audio Throughout Dubai’s Hutong

Hutong, a high-end Chinese restaurant in Dubai, is using a Xilica Solaro QR1 to provide audio for diners and bar patrons across multiple zones.

Dubai (May 5, 2020)—Hutong, a high-end Chinese restaurant located in Dubai’s International Financial District, is a busy place spread out across two floors. All that space is covered with a sizable audio system designed and installed by Levels, a regional integrator specializing in the hotel, bar, restaurant and nightlife sectors, which applied a Solaro QR1 DSP to process and manage analog and digital audio across the venue.

The Solaro Q1 feeds Powersoft Audio and Sonance amplifiers co-located in the same equipment rack, with loudspeaker systems from Pioneer Pro Audio, Powersoft and Sonance reproducing audio in the various zones.

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Levels was brought into the ground-up construction project early, and specified the audio system to live on the main IT network and complement the architectural design. Daniel Ball, partner at Levels, noted that Solaro is intended for “restaurants with modest I/O requirements for a select number of zones. And since we were dealing with limited real estate for AV systems, the Solaro QR1’s quarter-rack-width footprint addressed our physical integration concerns.”

Inside Hutong, the Solaro QR1 manages analog and digital connections across multiple zones, processing Dante digital audio for the livelier public dining and bar areas (public and private), and analog audio for secondary spaces including private dining areas, restrooms and an outdoor terrace. Live DJs in the bar area plug straight into the network via a Dante injector, with most background music coming from standalone media players in the central equipment rack.

“We worked closely with the IT integrator to develop a controlled environment with a layer of switching for the AV equipment,” said Ball. “The Solaro QR1 lives on the general campus network without affecting general IT traffic, and quietly processes and controls audio signals in the background.”

Hassan Alwan, managing partner at Levels, said that the overall systems design goal was to provide simplicity for the Hutong staff, and the DJs that plug into the system. “There is a controlled philosophy built into the entire system that provides simple, zone-by-zone control elements for the entire restaurant.”

Xilica •