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Adamson speakers preserve sightlines in school chapel

Array speakers were out of the question – so how did the integrator keep reverberation levels down?

A new sound reinforcement system based on Adamson Systems speakers has been installed in Luther College in Croydon, Australia. South Melbourne-based Factory Sound recently undertook this major audio upgrade to the school’s chapel.

The dominant visual feature in the chapel is the floor-to-ceiling leadlight window behind the altar, which drove the topology and layout of the speaker system. The sanctuary is horseshoe shaped, with a two-tiered seating plan that seats 400.

“The school’s leadership team were very specific in keeping sight lines to the leadlight absolutely clear from any seat in the house,” commented Daniel Thomas, Factory Sound’s head of installation. “This meant that conventional arrays were out of the question, and we had to strike a compromise between keeping the loudspeakers out of sight and maximising the direct-to-reverberant ratio.”

“There was up to four seconds RT60 at low frequencies and limited hanging points, so it was definitely a challenge. The final design was settled after detailed EASE acoustic modelling, and several discussions with Luther College’s music, finance and IT staff about ways to maximise their budget for the project.”

A mono pair of Adamson Point 12 cabinets fitted just out of sight above the timber cloud above the altar, and serve as the acoustic focus of the system. Directly above hangs a single Adamson Metrix Sub for LF reinforcement – again, virtually invisible from below. A ring of seven pairs of Adamson Point 8 loudspeakers hangs from the ceiling grid, serving the two seating tiers.

The Point 12 is recommended where high SPL is needed with a moderate amount of low frequency energy. The 12in ND12-L 8Ω Neodymium Kevlar driver and 1.4in exit HF driver mounted on an Adamson fibreglass waveguide give the Point 12 remarkable power.

Similar to the Point 12, the Point 8 is loaded with a single Adamson 8in ND8-LM 16Ω Neodymium Kevlar driver and 1in Exit HF driver mounted on an Adamson fibreglass waveguide. The point 8’s rotatable 90° x 60° waveguide offers a defined coverage pattern which was exactly what the chapel system required.

“The school is very happy with the result,” said Thomas. “The venue now caters to everything from sermons and musical theatre to concert bands and rock ensemble performances and everything in between.”