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L-Acoustics Kara II upgrades audio for Swedish cultural centre

System chosen for the Kulturhuset Spira on Lake Munksjön

L-Acoustics Kara II has been chosen as the soundsystem for the Kulturhuset Spira (Culture House Spira), a seven-story glass-and-wood cultural centre on the banks of Lake Munksjön, Sweden.

Leading Swedish architect firm Wingårdh designed the structure that houses four stages and hosts a progressive programme of music, theatre, dance, and children’s programming, as well as serving as the headquarters for the regional Smålands Music & Theatre team. Spira translates as ‘grow’ or ‘aspire’ and this spirit infuses the team at Spira’s desire to remain at the cutting edge of technology, so when they  upgraded the venue’s audio system, they opted for L-Acoustics Kara II.

When the centre opened its doors to audiences in 2011, it was with an original Kara system, but demand for a larger and more powerful system increased over the years and Kara II fitted the bill. Local integrator JLE Audio AB was able to offer a cost-effective solution to upgrade to the venue’s existing Kara to Kara II and supplementing it with additional new Kara II enclosures.

“The Jönköping’s Sinfonietta performs several concerts a year here,’ explained Spira head of sound, Jack Strandberg. “The classical musicians, guest conductors and sound technicians that work here all demand good sound. That’s why we chose the L-Acoustics brand with its ‘hi-fi’ sound, clarity and homogenous response to give the absolute best audio experience for our orchestra guest shows, conferences and for the audience.

“When we decided to upgrade, Kara II was a great option, particularly as the new Panflex ‘fins’ can eliminate early reflections. When we found out that we could upgrade our existing Kara, it made the choice even easier.”

Work began in late autumn last year and was completed in January. With support from the application engineers at L-Acoustics, and working closely with the team at Spira, JLE designed the new Kara II system, with the goal of ensuring even, quality coverage for every seat in the auditorium.

“L-Acoustics products and their system design are outstanding, offering high-end technology and sound quality of the highest level,” said JLE’s Johannes Jonsson. “We knew the system would satisfy both in-house sound engineers and guest productions. L-Acoustics Soundvision was used to create the whole setup. It’s very helpful to have such great software to get a clear picture of the results we can expect.”

Strandberg notes that having a long-standing relationship with JLE and L-Acoustics meant the collaborative process throughout the project worked extremely well. “I emailed L-Acoustics CAD files of our concert hall and got back a detailed Soundvision file for the venue,” he said. “The direction from me was to have the KS28 floor subwoofers in cardioid, together with our original SB18 centre subwoofers, also in cardioid mode, and to have an even spread from the Kara II and subwoofers throughout the entire auditorium.”

The final setup comprises main hangs of 14 Kara II per side with four flown SB18 in the centre, plus a further four ground stacked KS28, two each stage left and right. Eight 5XT are positioned evenly across the stage lip to provide frontfill, whilst four 8XT are used for balcony fills. The system is driven by nine LA4X and one LA12X amplified controller with a P1 processor managing audio distribution over AVB to all amplifiers.