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Ashly amplifiers for Big Pallet Fukushima convention centre

2011's catastrophic tsunami in Japan caused damage to the Fukushima Convention Centre, delaying proposed renovation works as well as making them more necessary. Part of the audio revamp included Ashly amplifiers.

Damaged in Japan’s 2011 tsunami, the Big Pallet Fukushima Convention Center recently reopened after extensive renovations were made to the 250,000sqft facility. Among the multiple revamp projects were new sound systems for the 31,000sqft exhibition hall and 1,000sqft convention space, which now use Ashly ne800.70 amplifiers to power to One Systems loudspeakers.

Morimoto Naniwa Sound Projects of Tokyo was charged with the new audio system’s design, while local integration firm Esu Esu Techno handled the install. The facility regularly hosts meetings, exhibitions, festivals, and even sporting events so the sound reinforcement systems in the exhibition and convention halls would primarily be used for announcement, making high intelligibility and plenty of power key requirements.

“This project was to renew their old infrastructure,” said Masaki Morimoto, co-owner of Morimoto Naniwa Sound Projects. “Big Pallet was built in 1998, and all of its facilities – including sound reinforcement – were beginning to show their age. We drew up the renewal planning early in 2011, but the project was obviously postponed due to the huge tsunami in the spring of that year.”

The team was able to utilise existing inputs, including announcement microphones and background music sources, which feed an existing mixing console at the tech position. They were also able to repurpose some existing Panasonic DSPs for input and loudspeaker conditioning. New One Systems 112IM mains and 108IM/70 in-ceiling loudspeakers were selected to replace the old loudspeakers, one for one, with power from three Ashly ne800.70 amplifiers.

“It was easy to reuse the large Panasonic low-impedance amplifier for the 112IM loudspeakers,” said Morimoto. “But the options for a high-impedance power amplifier with large output were limited. Ashly Audio’s low cost, reliability, and sound quality made it the obvious choice.”

Morimoto tuned the system at commissioning, and Big Pallet’s staff operates the system day-to-day from the mixing console. “The sound quality of the new system is very good,” he concluded. “All announcements are clear and intelligible, even above the noise of an exhibition or event.”