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Meyer Sound ‘shapes sonic environment’ at San Fran restaurant

Bellota has become the latest Bay Area restaurant to install Meyer Sound’s Constellation acoustic sound system to provide balanced sound that staff can easily control as the room’s occupancy changes.

“There’s a harmony to a great restaurant,” Bill Russell-Shapiro proprietor of The Absinthe Group said. “Meyer Sound helped us achieve the vision I had for Bellota, which is an idea taken from a warm, welcoming restaurant I found in Barcelona, and also by Rick’s Café Américain from the movie ‘Casablanca.’”

Bellota is a new 5,400sqft, 170-seat Spanish restaurant in an airy former warehouse space located in San Fransisco’s SoMa district and Santa Rosa-based PCD installed the system.

“Constellation is a flexible system that creates balance,” said Jonny Raglin, who managed the Bellota project for The Absinthe Group, where he’s director of bars. “It allows us to create different atmospheres at different times. We’re able to make it romantic and quiet in a certain portion of the space, and lively in another part of the space at the same time.

“You can go into some restaurants where it’s so loud you can’t hear yourself talk. Or you can be in a place that’s so quiet and lonely you don’t feel like you’re part of the action. Those are the polar ends. We wanted to find the best of both worlds and be able to control it.”

Raglin continued: “Constellation shapes a sonic environment that’s peppered with things like clinking glasses, sizzling pans, a cocktail shaker, voices, and laughter.”

The focal point of Bellota’s Constellation system is a D-Mitri digital audio platform housing the patented VRAS acoustical algorithm, which works in conjunction with 24 miniature cardioid microphones, 34 UP-4XP loudspeakers, and 12 MM-10XP subwoofers. Six Stella-8C installation loudspeakers cover the private dining room, where a sound-absorptive Libra acoustic image system bearing a photograph of flamenco dancers reduces reverberation. In the lounge, a system of two UP-4XP loudspeakers and one 500-HP subwoofer provides sound reinforcement for live music played on a grand piano, which is also distributed at appropriate volume levels throughout the dining room via Constellation.

Other restaurants to install Constellation include Berkeley’s Comal, the first location to embrace Constellation, The Advocate, San Francisco’s Cala, The Battery; and Oakland’s Oliveto Café and Restaurant.

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