Yamaha Music Europe's ninth annual system designers’ conference – entitled 'Multi-channel Audio for Entertainment and Professional Communication'– featured three rooms set up with bespoke audio systems in support of the various seminars, including a 3D audio installation.
Hosted this year at the appropriately futuristic-looking Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia at the Valencia campus of Berklee College of Music, the two-day conference is an opportunity for delegates to discuss ideas, technology and best practice with other European audio professionals. For the first time, the 2016 event featured multiple manufacturers.
For sessions on three-dimensional audio reproduction, a joint project between Barco Audio Technologies, Unique Cinema Systems, Dolby Laboratories and Yamaha saw a bespoke lecture theatre constructed to support the Yamaha AFC3, Dolby Atmos and Barco’s IOSONO Immersive Sound specifications in a single, shared system. The system comprised a 10m x 8m x 4m truss, populated with 56 Nexo and Yamaha loudspeakers and driven by networked Nexo and Yamaha power amplifiers. The Dante and MADI-based system was managed by a single Yamaha MRX7-D signal processor, which merged the three multi-channel inputs from a Yamaha AFC3 Active Field Control processor, a Dolby Atmos RMU processor (controlled by Nuage Digital Audio Workstation) and an IOSONO CORE processor.
“We wanted to make this an interactive conference with very high share of hands-on – or rather ‘ears-on’ – content. Building the bespoke workshop systems involved complex logistics, but everybody worked seamlessly together to make it happen,” said Ron Bakker, systems marketing manager at Yamaha Music Europe.
Another space, Studio 81, saw a full-scale Dante network with switches, I/O racks, mixing consoles and DSP engines demonstrated. It also featured a Disklavier grand piano, seamlessly integrated with Yamaha’s MusicCast wireless audio distribution system to demonstrate advanced hospitality applications.
Meanwhile, a full conference system was installed in Sala B (Hall B) to demonstrate multi-channel wired and wireless microphone systems, local PA for conferencing and distant communication using a combination of technologies, including automatic echo cancelling.
In addition to the three main demonstration areas, a range of more general topics was presented in the venue’s Aula Magistral hall. These included new applications of software-defined media, immersive audio solution concepts and design, 2.4GHz wireless microphone technologies and 2D/3D live sound limitations and perspectives.
Guiding the sessions were audio professionals from all of the participating companies, including Stephan Mauer (Barco), James Puig (Dolby Laboratories), Nicolas Poitrenaud (Nexo), Holger Stoltze (Revolabs), Brendan Woithe (Steinberg Media Group), Tor Brede Michielsen (Unique Cinema Systems), Karl Christmas, Masahiro Ikeda, Masato Hata and Takayuki Watanabe (Yamaha Corporation of Japan), Andreas Juwan, Arthur Koll, Christoph Stepan, Gerrit Carstens, Michael Geise, Ron Bakker, Ruben van der Goor and Thomas Hoffarth (Yamaha Music Europe).