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Electro-Voice XLD impresses at UK Jazz Fest

Electro-Voice’s super-compact XLD line array system was recently heard at the annual summer picnic festival for the Plymouth Jazz Club in south-western England. This concert marked the debut for a new XLD system purchased by Light Years Light and Sound, complete with EV amplifiers, system controllers and microphones.

Light Years Light and Sound, from Tavistock, has been servicing the events of the Plymouth Jazz club for many years, and chose the annual outdoor festival at National Trust property Saltram House as the first outing for its all-new EV inventory.

“Our old point-source system just ran out of steam,� says Anthony Plumridge from Light Years. “The criteria I had for a new system was that it should be compact, quick, and easy to set up, with superb sound quality. We went over to Shuttlesound’s demo facility in south London and listened to several EV options

that met

our criteria, each with

its own unique qualities. Eventually, I decided on the XLD281, and, after one more phone call, the cabinets were on their way.�

Plumridge gives a vivid account of arriving on site with his first line array. “First the Trabes towers were put up , which took about 15 minutes each, then the XLDs were wheeled under the towers in their cases and, with safety checks complete, winched up to 4.5 metres. All the other usual PA stuff was done and the system was ready for a test.

“After running a low level check on the HF, low and hi-mid, all seemed OK. Now was the time to turn up the wick a little, and a little was all that was needed to get us incredible, crystal-clear sound with superb definition. I was amazed and very relieved. The first band arrived and the usual line checks were done. Richard the sound engineer got the EQ and sound balance sorted, the band played a number and WOW!!! what an amazing sound! Even the engineering was easier due to the very natural, transparent reproduction — a truly superb result.â€?

The Saltram House venue is a historic listed building, with a long lawn area some 50 metres wide, with 45 metres from stage to mix tower, and another 50 metres behind. With 4x XLD281 compact line array modules either side of stage, paired with the appropriate subs, the system ran with 2x DC-One controllers and EV CP Series amplifiers. The stage was miked up wth a selection of EV microphones, including an N/D767a on vocals.

“Sound levels remained clear all the way to the back of the audience area so the delay system that we’d brought stayed behind the stage – unused. Throughout the concert, members of the audience went out of their way to tell me or Richard how good the sound was, and the bands – The Frog Island Jazz Band and Richard Leach’s Seven Stars of Jazz – were equally pleased, and these are very experienced bands.â€?

After such a successful debut, Light Years is looking at a change in circumstances now that it can offer line array. “This system will make an enormous difference to us,� says Anthony Plumridge, “now we can pitch for larger and better-paid work. We’ve already been asked to do a major event on Plymouth Hoe later this month. I would go so far as to say that this is the best system I have ever heard, so it’s a good job I bought it!�

Light Years Light and Sound

Tel: 01822 840115 
Tel: 0208 646 7114