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Making the most of each visit: ZonePRO sets the route around NZ museum

The town of Taupo is situated in the central North Island of New Zealand, on the edge of the largest freshwater lake in the Southern Hemisphere. Lake Taupo is actually an active volcanic crater that was formed some 200 million years ago in what has been described as the world’s largest explosion! Taupo is thus a tourist mecca and attracts thousands of visitors each year as it is the gateway to New Zealand’s spectacular volcanic plateau and geothermal regions.

Situated in the heart of Taupo, New Zealand, only minutes from the lake and Taupo’s superb shopping district Taupo Museum is the home to a blend of heritage and culture; from yesterday’s historic treasures to today’s contemporary art.

The audio system within the museum has been designed as a six-zone system controlled by the ZonePRO 1260 digital zone processor. Each zone has independent source select and is served by a ZC-1 volume control and ZC-9, which can handle up to eight sources – in this instance CD/DVD players for background music and AV presentations throughout the building.

Richard Braid of JANDS (NZ) Technical Resource Group (TRG) who designed the system states that because all the zones are public areas, it was necessary to have the remotes accessible only to authorised personnel, who then set the system up as required.

“We could have used the front panel of the ZonePRO,” he reasons, “but decided it was easier for the staff to see what was happening instantly on a global basis, and keep the user interface as simple as possible.” One of the big advantages of using the ZonePRO had been this ability to hide all the smart processing and give the staff a simple analogue-style interface.

With its 12 inputs and six output capability, the ZonePRO 1260 proved the perfect solution for this application. “The flexible input/output configuration was one reason for selecting the system, which matched the customers’ requirements and budget,” summarised the system designer. “All the processing was able to be done within the box without the need for outboard equipment or external DSP.”

The speakers under the command of dbx’s proprietary processing are a mixture of flush mount and surface mount JBL Control Series enclosures. Control 25T’s are used in the art gallery, Tuwharetoa gallery and courtyard, Control 28’s feature in the retail/foyer area and flush mount Control 24CT Micro’s are found in the Taupo regional displays. The sixth zone is the award winning Ora Garden which won a gold medal at the Chelsea Flower Show. Sonance Rock Speakers are scattered through the garden and play a soundtrack of native bird songs and atmospheric music.

The system was installed by Deacons Retrovision’s Stephen Spargo.