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Historic Czech Theater Upgrades with Innovason Eclipse GT, EtherSound

J.K. Tyl Theatre auditorium

The J.K. Tyl Theatre in the Czech Republic city of Plzen (Pilsen), one of the city’s most historic cultural landmarks, recently upgraded its audio system by installing a new Innovason Eclipse GT digital mixing console and a sophisticated EtherSound digital audio network. Built in 1902, the building honors the city’s outstanding theater tradition, which is said to be second only to that of the Czech capital, Prague.

MUSICDATA, exclusive distributor in the Czech Republic for the Innovason brand, selected cable from German cable manufacturer Sommer Cable as the backbone of the system with an AVM500-ES EtherSound network matrix from Auvitran, which enabled star- as well as daisy-chain connections. The AVM500 is connected to the control room via optical fiber. The result is a completely flexible network that enables high quality audio signal transfer from seven different locations. Sound technicians are able to move any of the Innovason SR-16 16-in/16-out stage boxes to any of the connection points to cater quickly and easily to the demands of any given production.

J.K. Tyl Theatre stage

In addition to the Eclipse GT, the control room has also been equipped with two computers loaded with recording and playback software. The computers use the Auvitran AV3rd EtherSound/ASIO bridge. The recording studio workstation in the control room has a direct connection to the network and has the ability to record sound from anywhere on stage or even from ambient microphones in the auditorium.

The studio can also add streams to the network—and thus to the Eclipse, which is capable of recording up to 64 channels of high quality digital audio—or directly to the monitored lines or to the P.A. system. The final mix from the Eclipse is also sent directly to the P.A. system in AES/EBU format.

“This is the most complex EtherSound system we have ever installed,” says MUSICDATA MD, Tomas Ourednicek. “Working in an historical listed building like this beautiful theater is never easy; in fact, it was very difficult indeed, but we still ended up running over 870 meters of Cat-5 cable and 70 meters of optical fiber. Furthermore, the whole network is completely scalable and therefore ready for any future expansion. We put our long experience of working with EtherSound and Innovason to very good use in this installation, and I am pleased to report that everything works absolutely perfectly.”

J.K. Tyl Theatre’s sound director, Petr Solc, at the Innovason Eclipse GT digital mixing console

“The new Eclipse GT console is well laid out, with direct access to 60 inputs, and allows for a mix of up to 104 inputs, which means we’ll be able to handle even the most difficult performances,” says J.K. Tyl Theatre’s sound director, Petr Solc. “It’s extremely user-friendly. For example, the channel label is easily visible above the fader. It sounds fantastic, and best of all, the console can be configured entirely according to our need for each show.

“The fact that any fader can be anything is the biggest advantage for us,” Solc continues. “With a width of 116 centimeters and 48 fully configurable faders—and I’m not counting the others on the Smartpanel—we don’t have to use layers; all inputs and outputs can be managed simultaneously and we still have space to lay down the script. Also, the digital patching has made our everyday workflow much easier. The new network allows us to react to and implement even the most difficult requests from our director, conductor and all the other artists.”

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