Because the city of Greenfield, Indiana puts on a number of festivals and other events throughout the year, the decision was recently taken to invest in a citywide sound reinforcement system. Local AV integration firm Force Technology Solutions designed and installed the system for future expansion and convenient control using the Symetrix SymNet Radius 12x8 Dante networked audio signal processor and ARC-WEB user control for mobile devices.
Although the city is now a suburb of Indianapolis, it dates from the 1800s, when it was a railway stop and the birthplace of famed poet James Whitcomb Riley. The city celebrates that tradition for a long weekend every October with Riley Days, which ranks among Indiana’s best-attended festivals.
“Riley Days is a big deal,” said AJ Fager, owner of Force Technology Solutions. “Greenfield closes down its main streets, and vendors from all around set up tents. The city officials wanted a permanent sound reinforcement system that would serve Riley Days, as well as the other events that the city hosts. The Symetrix SymNet Radius 12x8 was the perfect processor because it is powerful, cost-effective, and easily scalable via Dante. Moreover, we could give them customised control via SymVue real-time user control panel application running on any Windows compatible PC and simultaneously give them simple, intuitive control for technicians’ smartphones via Symetrix’ ARC-WEB technology.”
In its initial deployment, the system is comprised of eight zones, each of which are independently tuned and delayed to minimise echo effects. Weatherproof Community R.5HP 8-ohm and R.5HPt 70V loudspeakers mounted to poles and powered by Crown CDi-Series amplifiers now dot downtown Greenfield. “Those loudspeakers and amplifiers are capable of delivering high sound pressure, and the design became a case of ‘less is more’,” said Fager. “When we modelled the system, it was apparent that more loudspeakers would have complicated the delay scheme and ultimately resulted in more harm than good.” Inputs to the system include two music sources and two wireless microphone systems.
The Greenfield IT department manages the citywide sound reinforcement system. Fager designed a custom Windows-compatible, PC-based control interface using Symetrix SymVue software. The interface consists of a map of the city broken down by zone. Within each zone, technicians can control volume and other aspects of system performance. Because such adjustments are sometimes better made from the zone itself, Fager also gave them a Symetrix ARC-WEB interface. Technicians access the password protected ARC-WEB interface from their smartphones and can thus make adjustments from anywhere.
Already, the city officials are excited to expand the system with four more zones. Fager anticipated this, and that was part of the reason why he went with the Dante networked SymNet Radius 12x8. Because its full processing power is far from tapped, Fager can simply add a Symetrix SymNet xOut 12 and, via the magic of Dante, the system will have the required additional outputs at little expense.