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Radio City Music Hall Gets New System

Clair Bros. Systems has installed a new sound reinforcement system at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. The system features a total of 58 JBL VerTec loudspeakers and is designed for easy reconfiguration for use at various types of events. The new audio system has already been employed for concerts by Fashion Rocks, Tony Bennett, Ben Harper, Hillary Duff and Kings of Leon. Upcoming events include three nights with the Dalai Lama and the 2007 Radio City Christmas Spectacular.

“Radio City Music Hall is a big space—about 6,000 seats, and a lot of acts that play here do not have a large enough P.A. system for the room,” says Tom Arrigoni, Radio City Music Hall’s lead sound engineer. “We wanted a system that would perform at a high level with enough flexibility that it can be used in a variety of ways, and will give us excellent sound coverage that consistently fills the entire performance space.”

The new system features two columns of 15 VerTec VT4889 full-sized line array elements each, arranged in a left-right configuration. A VT4800-DA (Downfill Adaptor) array frame is used to suspend a pair of VT4887A compact line array loudspeakers beneath each main array. A center cluster of eight VT4887As supplements the main system, while two arrays of eight VT4880A arrayable subwoofers each provide extended low-frequency output.

“The new system is totally portable and can be removed or reconfigured depending on the event,” says Jim Devenney, senior audio designer for Clair Bros. Systems. “With any project of this magnitude, cabling is always a challenge. The amp rack room is located on the fifth floor, so we routed some heavy cable across the ceiling with cable trays to power the system.

For more than 35 years, the combination of JBL and Clair Bros. has proven to be synonymous with success in the touring sound market and more recently in the installation business,” Devenney adds. “Each company has a unique input that provides for many of the client’s needs and resolves obstacles that might block the project’s success. Clair Bros. Audio Systems’ expertise with installed and portable sound systems and the know-how of the Radio City staff helped this project to be a quick and successful install.”

For more information, visit Clair Bros. Systems at Visit JBL at and Radio City Music Hall at For additional SR news, visit The Briefing Room.