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Martin Audio multi-zoned system brings flexible sound to K-Bar

The K-Bar at the University of Kent’s Canterbury Campus has undergone a major design and AV system overhaul, featuring Martin Audio CDD loudspeakers from Penguin Media Solutions.

Dylan Thompson, project manager and system specifier noted: “With the arrival of CDD I don’t need to look elsewhere, which is a nice position to be in. CDD has been a revelation — it’s well priced, sounds great and I can spec it for just about anything.”

Penguin was awarded the contract by Kent Hospitality, which manages all the university’s bars and leisure facilities. “We met Keith Williams, head of trading at Kent Hospitality a few years ago now, and he really liked our ideas and approach.”

The brief this time was to develop a technical infrastructure for a multipurpose facility that would trade as a sports bar by day, with a small stage for live bands and DJs coming on weekend nights. It needed to be cost-effective, multi-zoned, for flexible audio and video routing, and offer simple control for bar staff.

Under the project management of John Holley (JSH Project Management) the installation had to be completed during the Easter break.

At the Stage end are a pair of CDD10 (10in) speakers, wall-mounted on Powerdrive brackets either side of the stage, and a CSX212 (2 x 12in) sub. Facing this at the opposite end of the room is a pair of CDD8 (8in), left and right and another CSX212 sub. “It can therefore function as a 2.1 cinema surround system or for student presentations, while if the DJ wants to work from that end the volume can be adjusted accordingly,” said Thompson.

A separate sofa area, away from the main action, is served by a pair of CDD8, with a further pair of CDD8 providing a warm sound at the bar.

In this four-zone design, any source can be routed to any destination via Soundweb London DSP, operating under the master control of a Crestron processor, which also handles the video routing to the seven screens. All local control is performed from an iPad with a custom user interface from Penguin.

Thompson explained: “There were a lot of different speaker brands previously all clashing with each other. By standardising on CDD, and halving the number of boxes the sound has improved massively.”

Kent Hospitality’s Keith Williams commented: “We required Penguin to programme the system in zones so that volume across the space could be adjusted according to use and specifics of event. The new CDD system more than met the requirement.

“The clarity of sound is stunning, and the ability to have loud music yet still allow conversation is amazing. The speakers spread sound in a consistent way as you walk through the space.”

Martin Audio loudspeaker systems