WATCHUNG HILLS, NEW JERSEY – MARCH 2010: Watchung Hills Regional High School, which serves some 2,000 students in central New Jersey, recently added a beautiful, state-of-the-art 1,000+ seat theater to its complex. In addition to plays, concerts, talent shows, and the like, the new theater also hosts less colorful, but vitally important, regional school board meetings. Greater New York’s Audio Incorporated provided all of the programming and tuning services for a comparably sophisticated sound system, which includes a SymNet 8×8 DSP capable of transparently auto mixing four microphones and a computer input. It’s perfect for said board meetings and movie presentations.
A left-right pair of QSC WideLine-8 line arrays deliver audio content to the perfectly appointed room, with four QSC WL212 flown subwoofers and two QSC MD-SP218 ground subwoofers filling in ably on the bottom end and QSC PL-series amplifiers power the speaker system. A forty-eight channel Yamaha
M7CL 48 digital console provides complete and comprehensive control of myriad inputs for full productions of theater, music, or both. Sixteen wireless microphone channels, combined with a Sennheiser wired microphone package for every conceivable instrument, provide the bulk of the inputs. Eight dbTechnologies DVX series self-powered monitors serve the performers with crystal-clear output.
Combined with a SymNet Break-In 12 for twelve additional inputs, the SymNet 8×8 DSP provides the heart – and brains! – of the system. A SymNet ARC-SWK and ARC-SW4 duo allow the school AV techs to place the system into different modes and control overall output volume. Both are wall-mounted interface panels with four push buttons. The SWK adds a designer-configurable knob. The two most frequently used modes are “Show” and “Automix.” In “Show” mode, control goes to the Yamaha console for a fully human-engineered mix, as per any standard sound system. In “Automix” mode, no human engineer need be present, which is perfect for board meetings or movie presentations. The SymNet 8×8 DSP is “open architecture” in the sense that the programmer, in this case Hugh Sinclair of Audio Incorporated, is free to configure processing blocks in any way he chooses. All SymNet processors contain processing blocks with extensive auto-mixing capacities. At Watchung, users need only plug in their microphones and a computer and SymNet takes care of the rest.
“In terms of sheer processing power and flexibility for the dollar, no other DSP manufacturer comes close to SymNet,” said Sinclair, who is asked by installers to work with DSPs of every conceivable manufacturer. “This is an age in which everything comes with DSP – you can buy a Sennheiser microphone with built-in DSP, connect it up to your console with built-in DSP, send it over to the DSP, output to the power amps, which ship with DSP, and on to the speakers, which might just have some DSP for kicks. What sets SymNet apart is value, ease of networking, great control interface, either with SymNet ARC panels or third party devices, and ease of configuration.”
A real gem for any institution, let alone a high school, Watchung’s new theater adds support and inspiration for the many students and departments that have already put it to very good use!
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PHOTO CAPTION SymNet DSP keeps it simple and functional for Watchung Hills Regional High School Theater.