To Enhance the Music, Improve the Intelligibility and Quiet the Noise
UPPER MARLBORO, MD: Dr. Peter D’Antonio began his career as a diffraction physicist at the Naval Research Lab (NRL) in 1967. A musician and composer with an interest in recording, Dr. D’Antonio designed and built the Underground Sound Studio in his home in the late 1970s. In the early 1980s, he became intrigued with the possibility of using diffusing surfaces based on a mathematical number theory, initially developed by Carl Friedrich Gauss in the 18th century, to diffuse rather than absorb the reflected sound from the rear wall of his control room. D’Antonio was familiar with these new, periodic diffusing surfaces; because they were 2-dimensional versions of the 3-D crystal lattices he was studying using X-ray diffraction. As a result of this research, the RPG® Diffusor was born, along with a new Live-End-Dead-End design for control rooms, using a ‘Reflection Free Zone,’ (RFZTM,) which remains the de facto design standard today.
While still working as a diffraction physicist, he incorporated RPG Diffusor Systems, Inc. in 1983. “The RPG Diffuser, which was inducted into the music industry’s TECnology Hall of Fame this year, was the first innovation inspired by our mission of ‘expanding the acoustical palette through a continued commitment to fundamental acoustics research,’” D’Antonio reveals. “Recording studio owners and designers were quick to embrace these revolutionary units. They proved highly effective in improving room acoustics and they provided handsome aesthetic enhancements as well. We literally launched a new industry.” In 1996, Dr. D’Antonio retired from NRL to devote full time to growing RPG from a pioneer in the recording industry to providing new solutions in the general architectural acoustics market. Over the past thirty years, RPG Diffusor Systems, Inc.’s award-winning innovations have changed the face (and the sound) of recording, broadcast, and performance environments. Today, a wide array of RPG products are engaged to enhance an astonishing range of acoustically challenged environments around the globe.
RPG recently instituted a new management team. Dr. Peter D’Antonio is now Chairman/ CEO, and two long-term RPG team members who have contributed greatly to the firms success, have been promoted to senior management positions. John Groth has been appointed President/CFO, Jeff Madison has been named Executive Vice President. Research continues to nourish RPG product advances.
The firm has pioneered a 3-decade-long progression of groundbreaking developments, now considered indispensible to architects and acousticians. Today, a mature assessment of the need for improved acoustics is manifest far beyond the professional audio recording and broadcast studio enclave. RPG products are employed by a client base that encompasses schools, corporate boardrooms and auditoriums, concert halls, motion picture and live performance theaters, Houses of Worship, home theaters, stadiums, restaurants and the burgeoning Project Studio market.
“On-going dialogues with professional organizations such as the Audio Engineering Society, the Acoustical Society of America and Syn-Aud-Con, coupled with long-term relationships with leading architects and acousticians have inspired a number of our new products over the years,” D’Antonio says. In addition to the RPG Diffusor System, which has continued evolving to include the widest range and highest performance sound diffusors, RPG has also developed a wide range of innovative absorbing surfaces.
The ModffusorTM eliminates all the limitations of the original QRD® and represents the highest diffusive performance to date; Waveform® is a patented wide range of optimized curvilinear shapes for wall or suspended cloud installation; Topakustik® and Topperfo®, are key elements in the most expansive and versatile sound absorbing wood plank and panel system, representing hallmarks of high quality installations. “Newer products like Quietstone® , an innovative approach to utilizing recycled stone aggregate or glass to control noise, sound reflections and excess reverberation, and Clearsorber® Foil and Deamp, transparent sound absorbers with microperforations and micro-slits, respectively, illustrate the validity of our philosophy of dedicated R&D,” D’Antonio asserts.
An increasing commitment by architects to improving the sound quality in new public and private buildings has seen RPG products perform noteworthy acoustical services in many significant international projects. These include: The New York TimesCenter, designed by Renzo Piano; Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, recently completed in Dubai; Denver Museum of Nature and Science; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Jungle City, NY’s acclaimed destination recording studio; Sony Computer Entertainment America, San Mateo, CA; the renowned Jazz At Lincoln Center Complex; and, most recently the SFJAZZ Center an extraordinary new 35,000 sq. ft ‘sanctuary for jazz,’ in San Francisco.
“We consider the past 30 years a prelude to the next 3 decades,” Peter D’Antonio adds. “Sophisticated new research, measurement and simulation tools and innovative new acoustic materials are constantly being introduced. Awareness of the critical role performed by acoustics in our social, business and entertainment worlds has never been higher. Our commitment to on-going research and our state-of-the art measurement facilities for determining the absorption, scattering and diffusion coefficients are increasingly productive. RPG’s staff of mathematicians, acousticians, musicians and architects continues to guide our firm towards more breakthrough developments; and to on-going improvements to products already established as industry standards. The future looks good to us, and we’re dedicated to making it sound even better,” he concludes.
Photo 1. Dr. Peter D’Antonio, RPG Difuser Systems, Inc. Founder/Chairman/CEO
Photo 2. (l-t-r) RPG Difuser Systems, Inc. Founder/Chairman/CEO, Dr. Peter D’Antonio, President/CFO John Groth, and Executive Vice President Jeff Madison.
NOTE: In 2007, Dr. Peter D’Antonio established the Chesapeake Acoustic Research Institute, LLC www.cari-llc.com, The Institute is focused on providing the architectural acoustics community with continuing acoustical education, experimentation/proof-of-performance testing and exploration of more effective room designs, with the ultimate goal of improving the acoustics of the built environment.
Formed in 1983, RPG Diffusor Systems, Inc. is committed to continually expand the acoustical palette of tools available to the design community, builders and customers. RPG is located at 651 C Commerce Drive, Upper Marlboro, MD 20774 Phone:301 249 0044, Email: [email protected] or visit: http://www.rpginc.com/