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Marsh/PMK Upgrades Abilene Theater Experience With EAW Adaptive

by FOH Staff • in
  • News
• Created: November 6, 2018
The new system is a left-center-right configuration made up of five EAW Anna modules each, hung 30 feet off the floor providing clean and even coverage throughout the venue.

ABILENE, TX – Marsh/PMK designed an audio system featuring an Eastern Acoustic Works (EAW) Adaptive sound system for the Auditorium at the Abilene Convention Center.

More details from EAW (www.eaw.com):

The Auditorium at the Abilene Convention Center provides community members and visitors with performances that range from world-famous singers to hit Broadway musicals. The multi-purpose venue recently upgraded the experience with the installation of an Eastern Acoustic Works (EAW) Adaptive sound system.

Convention Center management brought in Marsh/PMK international to design the new system with TMG Systems stepping up with installation.

“I suggested an Anna system because I felt it was the most appropriate for their needs,” explains Jerrold Stevens, associate principal, director AV systems for Marsh/PMK. “It not only provided the coverage the room needed but the fact that we could tweak the coverage – with just a few mouse clicks – was invaluable.”

The theater, which features continental seating and a two-level balcony, seats 2,091. One of the goals of the new sound reinforcement system was to easily modify coverage to exclude the balcony seating (667 seats) when necessary.

Stevens ultimately specified a left-center-right configuration made up of five Anna modules each. The arrays were hung 30 feet off the floor, under a curved ceiling, in front of the proscenium, making installation a challenge.

“In this situation there was no way to build the array and take it up as one unit,” says Mark LaBouff, TMG Systems. “We couldn’t get a motor up there. We ended up bringing all of the rigging down through the ceiling and hung the frame. From there we brought up the boxes – one at a time – and hung them individually. Fortunately, with the size of Anna and ease of rigging, it was much easier than it might have been.”

Stevens notes that another challenge was designing a system with very little information about the room. In fact, the team worked off scans of the original, hand-drawn drawing to complete the project. The information and data necessary for accurate modeling was simply not available.

“That was another reason that I thought Anna was the best fit,” adds Stevens. “I knew the system could be easily adjusted through software. So, if our designs were off a bit, it would be an easy fix – which may not be the case with other systems.”

LaBouff adds, “The end result was a significant improvement over the previous system. The output is amazing. The system has significant headroom and it sounds fantastic.”

“When we fired it up, it was amazing – hair raising – it just sounded incredible,” concludes Stevens. “A great system in a great room that will accommodate their needs for years to come.”

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