Occupying more than 30,000 square feet, Echostage is the largest indoor concert venue in Washington D.C. Located in a converted warehouse and formerly known as DC Tunnel and DC Star, the building was taken over in September 2012 by a group led by Panorama Productions and Club Glow to house large-scale concert productions, ranging from rock and hip-hop to dance music.
While the bulk of Echostage's events involve Glow’s dance music DJ-events, it was renovated to serve as an all purpose venue made to host live bands, MCs and any other event requiring a large-scale stage production.
Echostage hosts anywhere between two and five shows per week, drawing crowds of thousands. It offers clear sight lines on the large first floor dance area, and comfortable lounge seating in the balcony, and its team strives to provide everything the fans and artists could need.
Echostage's leadership called upon OHM Productions, an A/V production company in Northern Virginia, to provide sound reinforcement for each show.
"Echostage is becoming an epic venue; there's no other site like it near Washington D.C. ," says OHM Productions owner Jeff Darby. "This team really cares about providing an experience for everyone involved. They wanted to take it to the next level. Part of that was mastering the sound in a very dynamic space."
However, Darby says, the open feel made providing clear, even sound a relatively difficult task, and felt that d&b audiotechnik could offer the best solutions for Echostage.
"The various music styles each require different sound adjustments," Darby continues. "The V-Series from d&b is able to meet their wide range of needs, plus the ArrayCalc technology allows us to map the room to provide ideal sound, no matter where you are in the venue. The result is amazing. It sounds great."
Matt Cronin, general manager of Echostage, agrees. "We’d been hearing about d&b from touring DJs," Cronin says. "We definitely trust and respect the opinions of all our artists, so when we were ready to upgrade our system, it was important to look into d&b. We've been using the V-Series for months now, and the response is overwhelming. We've actually had artists ask if they can take it with them. It's exactly what we were looking for."
OHM decided to purchase its first full d&b system. Darby then turned to longtime associate and d&b sales partner, Bill Mills, CEO of Overland Pro Audio. Mills is a veteran d&b sales representative, and helped the group settle on the right system. They decided that the V-Series system would be ideal for electronic dance music.
"OHM has chosen a Midas PRO Series console for FOH and outfitted the stage rack with AES inputs and outputs," Mills says. "They are making use of the digital output from the DJ mixer so the signal path is purely digital from the source to the d&b amps. We did an A/B comparison of the digital and analog output from the DJ mixer and the sonic improvements with the digital output were shockingly apparent across the sound spectrum, but particularly with the J-INFRA subs. They add that extended LF range so critical in the EDM environment and they just really snapped into focus.
"There was no doubt the new system was perfect for Echostage," Mills continues. "Plus, the inherent directional control of the system is helpful for such a large, uninterrupted space. I believe in these products, and am happy to bring OHM and Echostage into the d&b family."
"The system is exactly what we were promised," Cronin says. "It's fast to rig, easy to use, and sounds great. At Echostage, it's all about providing an intimate experience for both artists and fans. This sound system allows us to do that. We are a community of people enjoying music. That has always been our focus. We are excited to continue growing and improving to pay respect to that community for years to come. This was just a first, and very important, step toward that."