Banff, Alberta, Canada â€“ August 2010â€¦ On July 24th, The Banff Centre, an internationally-respected cultural and educational institution, opened its new Kinnear Centre for Creativity & Innovation. Designed by architects Diamond + Schmitt, the six year, $100-million building will host artistic workshops, residencies, and performances, and provide high-tech meeting spaces for The Banff Centreâ€™s Leadership Development programs and conferences. Audio provisions throughout the complex are extensive and extremely capableâ€”thanks to the auto-mixing and signal routing power of multiple Aspen SPN1624 Digital Matrix mixers and Digital Hybrid WirelessÂ® microphone technology from Rio Rancho, NM-based Lectrosonics.
The Calgary, Alberta office of Applied Electronics, Ltd., a provider of broadcast, post production, and presentation technology, was contracted to handle the design and installation of the Kinnear Centreâ€™s audiovisual facilities. Kevin Stewart, Accounts Manager / System Designer with Applied Electronics, discussed his decision to deploy the Lectrosonics Aspen SPN1624 digital matrix mixers.
â€œA few years back,â€? Stewart said, â€œI had been to Lectrosonics for training on the companyâ€™s DM Series products and, at that time, was made aware of the forthcoming Aspen Series equipment. Upon inquiring about its possible use for this project, Lectrosonics technical staffers assured me the Aspen products were very well suited to the type of application I described. Lectrosonics was extremely helpful in recommending the right equipment to address the requirements of this project. In preparation for this installation, we sent Jordan Paulâ€”one of our field techniciansâ€”to a Lectrosonics Aspen Series training session. The training was very comprehensive and afterwards, our field crew was able to handle all programming aspects of the equipment.â€?
The Applied Electronics installation at Kinnear Centre involved a total of nineteen rooms. The Lectrosonics equipment deployed there includes five SPN1624 16-input / 12 output Digital Matrix Mixers and eleven PA8 8-channel power amplifiers. Wireless microphones used throughout the facilityâ€™s various multipurpose rooms include nine Lectrosonics LMa beltpack transmitters and nine UT handheld transmitters. On the receiving end, the Applied Electronics team installed Lectrosonics Venue receivers with a total of nine channels using the companyâ€™s VRS receiver modules.
â€œThe Kinnear Centre has three multipurpose rooms on each floor,â€? Stewart explained. â€œThese multipurpose rooms, via removable walls, can be configured to accommodate a wide range of activities. While the rooms can each be used as a single, large space, they can also be set up for a two-thirds/one third arrangement or three smaller spaces. The Aspen SPN1624 mixers handle all auto-mixing and signal routing functions for these various room combinations through presets that we established.â€?
â€œFurther, the 2nd and 3rd floors also have five classrooms/breakout rooms in addition to the multipurpose rooms,â€? he continued. â€œShould one of the multipurpose rooms experience overflow conditions, the classrooms can easily accommodate the excess people. The audio from the multipurpose rooms can be routed into the small classroom/breakout rooms to accommodate overflow conditions and the people in these rooms can still participate via microphones and monitors.â€?
Since its grand opening, The Kinnear Centre for Creativity & Innovation has impressed all visitors to the Banff Centre campus and Stewart reports their client is very pleased with the facilityâ€™s audio capabilities. â€œEverything is up and running exactly as we envisioned,â€? Stewart reports, â€œand our client has been very impressed with the Lectrosonics equipment. As the Kinnear Centre gains more and more use, Iâ€™m certain there will be a need for additional presets on the Aspen mixers. On that note, The Banff Centreâ€™s AV staff finds the SPN1624â€™s operation quite intuitive and has indicated theyâ€™d like to receive training so they can create their own presets as they become necessary. The SPN1624â€™s friendly interface and impressive capabilities played a huge role in the success of this project and Iâ€™m quite certain our firm will find more applications for the Aspen Series equipment.â€?
Well respected within the film, broadcast, and theater technical communities since 1971, Lectrosonics wireless microphone systems and audio processing products are used daily in mission-critical applications by audio engineers familiar with the company's dedication to quality, customer service, and innovation. Lectrosonics is a US manufacturer based in Rio Rancho, New Mexico. Visit the company online at www.lectrosonics.com.
Photo credit: Donald Lee, The Banff Centre.