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Historic Warsaw castle updates with Yamaha

David Davies 16 January 2012
Historic Warsaw castle updates with Yamaha

Yamaha equipment has been entrusted with audio mixing and system processing duties at one of Warsaw’s most significant buildings – Royal Castle, which was constructed in the 1500s.

Nearly destroyed during the Second World War, the castle has since been fully restored and is now host to a 300-seat ballroom and 180-seat concert hall/lecture theatre.

Ensuring high speech intelligibility is important in both areas – a priority complicated in the ballroom by a polished wood floor, mirrored and marble surfaces, and numerous windows.

Leading Polish acoustician Tadeusz Fidecki received a research grant from the Ministry of Science and Education for a project to improve speech intelligibility, with equipment supplier and system integrator M. Ostrowski Company tasked with system design and installation.

A team headed by project and design manager Michal Poplawski and Tomasz Rudzki, technician at The Fryderyk Chopin University of Music, specified a CobraNet digital networking system because of the long cable runs between the halls, control rooms and main system rack. CobraNet also allowed for versatile routing: multiple combination panels in each hall make patching-in simple, with two mobile equipment racks providing great flexibility.

A/D conversion for the analogue I/O is done by Yamaha DME8-iC and DME8-oC digital processors, with redundant HP switches routing signals to all locations, allowing a Yamaha LS9-16 digital mixing console to be connected in each hall or the control room, two floors above the halls. Both consoles are also fitted with MY-16Cii interface cards. A Yamaha DME24N digital mixing engine, equipped with an MY-16Cii card, also features in the system. It can work in either standalone mode or with the digital network, with every DME24N input channel able to be routed to the LS9 mixing consoles. The DME24N also handles routing for a mobile 5.1 system.

Remote laptop control of the consoles is provided via a dedicated Wi-Fi network, using Yamaha Studio Manager software. Audio can be recorded via an RME Fireface 800, or with MP3 compression on a USB memory stick direct from the desks.

“The system can be configured with both local and remote processing in each hall depending on the requirements of each event – it’s exceptionally flexible,” says Michal Poplawski. “The audio team at the Royal Castle is very happy with the outcome and is satisfied that it will meet their needs for years to come.”

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