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Powersoft Drives Outline Butterfly Speakers to Cover the Far Flung Crowds

NEW YORK – The spectacular 2009 Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony drew enormous crowds who enjoyed full coverage of the presentation through a satellite sound system driven by Powersoft Amplifiers. The event, in its 77th year, attracts tens of thousands of people from all over the world to witness the time-honored spectacle. For Production Resource Group (PRG), the production coordinators for the event, delivering the audio mix from the star-studded main stages to the outlying guests that filled the entire complex was a challenge met with Powersoft amplifiers.

“The tree lighting ceremony presented several unique problems in terms of coverage that were solved by using Powersoft amplifiers driving Outline Butterfly speakers,� says Bob Rendon, vice president, audio for Production Resource Group, Mount Vernon, NY. “Performances took place

on beautifully ornamented

stages around Rockefeller Center. The world-famous ice skating rink was covered over in carpet to accommodate one of the main performing stages and seating. However, audio needed to be supplied to the crowds that packed all of Rockefeller Center, so we were presented with the difficult situation of delivering sound to hard-to-reach places. The Powersoft amplifiers supplied us with more than adequate wattage despite very long cable runs. Everyone attending the event was treated to a crystal clear audio reproduction of the show to go along with the large video screens showing the event.�

The 2009 Rockefeller Center Tree Lighting Ceremony, co-hosted by Jane Krakowski of TV’s “30 Rock� and Zachary Levi of TV’s “Chuck�, featured performances by Michael Buble, Aretha Franklin, Alicia Keys, Barry Manilow, The Roots, Shakira and, of course, the iconic Radio City Rockettes. New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg and Jerry Speyer, CEO of Tishman Speyer, flipped the switch on 30,000 lights adorning the 75-foot Norway spruce. As the Rockefeller Christmas tree is arguably the most famous Christmas tree in the world, the technical operations needed to run efficiently and flawlessly for both the broadcast and the live performance.

To accomplish the coverage of Rockefeller Center, PRG hung a number of speaker clusters in various locations, including 16 Outline Butterfly speakers from scaffolding over the stages and from stands placed out into the audience. To adequately drive the speakers, PRG employed eight Powersoft K6 series amplifiers that delivered the power necessary to fill the entire space with loud, clear music. Because Powersoft amplifiers easily handle long cable runs, PRG could use non-powered speakers.

“Powersoft amplifiers are designed to be highly efficient and gives us the option to use passive speakers,� says Matt Bell, lead technician for Production Resource Group. “Powersoft amplifiers significantly reduce the disadvantages of long cable runs and deliver ample power with an extraordinary damping factor for an extremely tight bass response. If we had to supply the many satellite towers with AC, the job would have been overwhelmingly difficult and, indeed, dangerous with such a large crowd. Powersoft was the only amplifier that is designed to handle this unique situation.�

For more information, call 516.249.0013, email [email protected] or write to Powersoft, 70 Sea Lane, Farmingdale, New York 11735.

About Powersoft
Powersoft is the world leader in lightweight, high power, single rack space, energy efficient amplifiers for the professional audio market. Headquartered in Florence, Italy, with offices in Farmingdale, NY, Powersoft couples the experience and precision of its production department with exceptional components to deliver products with perfect audio response and high performance reliability. Its state-of-the-art amplifiers can be found in an array of markets, ranging from stadiums, sporting arenas, theme parks, performance venues and airports to convention centers, churches and clubs. For more information, visit the Powersoft Web site at
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