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Lake Contour Up to the Challenge for Dowlen Sound

Denver-based Dowlen Sound has taken delivery of six Lake Contour digital speaker processors. The company, which has provided production sound for touring artists at regional concert venues such as the Red Rocks Amphitheatre and the Coors (formerly Fiddler's Green) Amphitheatre for more than two decades, has added four Lake Contour units to its rental inventory and installed two at local theaters.

According to owner Bret Dowlen, four Lake Contours have gone straight into his two A-system drive racks, each with a wireless tablet for remote access to the system from anywhere within the venue, saying, “One’s going to the Fillmore Auditorium and one’s going to the Paramount Theatre in Denver.”

Having heard good things about the Lake Contour processor, Dowlen put one through a strenuous trial to assess its suitability for conditions in the Mile High City. Located well over 5,000 feet above sea level, atmospheric conditions play a critical role. “With the lower air pressure,” Dowlen explains, “any anomalies in the sound show up, especially on a hot day in the thin air.”

To test the unit’s limitations, he says, “I bought one and took it into the worst conditions I possibly could, which is the Colorado State Fairground in Pueblo, where it’s about 90 to 100 degrees every day and blowing winds and dirt. The difference in the P.A. was astounding. It was probably 10 or 12dB louder than we’d ever been able to get it before. The fidelity was impressive, and the low-frequency coherence and the smoothness of the high end were amazing.”

With concert sound rental rigs comprising a mix of McCauley Sound MONARC line array systems and Dowlen’s proprietary cabinets, the ability of Lake Contour to save and recall individual component and total system presets proved helpful, according to Dowlen. “We’re running three different cabinets. We have the McCauley MLA6 and the MLA5, and then our own proprietary box, so we have some presets setup for those three cabinets.”

For more information on the Contour processor, please visit For more information on Dowlen Sound, visit