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Scaling the heights with BSS Soundweb

Paddy Baker 16 April 2010
Scaling the heights with BSS Soundweb

More news from the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, with details of an extensive deployment of Soundweb processors. Following IE’s recent coverage of the extensive Tannoy loudspeaker installation, this week brings news of systems integrator Bond Communications’ selection of BSS Audio Soundweb devices to provide end-to-end networking at the Burj Khalifa.

Bond Communications was enlisted to provide an integrated, fully redundant AV system encompassing networking, cabling, security, home automation, AV conferencing, a two-way radio system and master control system. The design had to be underpinned by a CobraNet backbone, allowing any input to be routed to any output over standard Ethernet.

Introduced to the Soundweb family during another recent project, Bond’s Omar Chataw and team constructed the network around large quantities of the newer Soundweb London family members. These include the BLU-800, BLU-320, BLU-160 and BLU-120 devices, which feature a 256-channel, low-latency fault-tolerant bus and operate on Cat5e or Cat6 cable, allowing a direct connection between devices over distances of up to 100m. Located in each control room, a BLU-800 provides the main configurable hub and transmits the CobraNet bundle direct to CobraNet-equipped amplifiers, enabling an entirely digital signal path.

Meanwhile, the central control room features two BLU-800s, two BLU-160s and five BLU-120s to handle a matrix of over 100 inputs and 100 outputs, taking feeds from the main music server and local line inputs. An AMX control system has also been specified in various zones across the site and interfaces seamlessly with the Soundweb London devices via RS-232.

The overall result is a configuration that enables each area to listen to the same centralised source, or another source without any interference.

The music system covers all public areas as well as a number of dining rooms and bars inside the Armani Hotel Dubai. Meeting rooms have also been equipped with complete AV solutions.

Reflecting on a project in which the BSS systems were supplied by Harman Pro distributor GSL Professional, Chataw noted: "The DSP processing power of the newer BSS Audio products and the digital audio bus provided us with a perfect opportunity. But although we have a strong technical team, we wouldn’t have gone down this route unless we knew we would get full programming, technical and integration support from both BSS Audio and GSL Professional."

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