Two Meyer Sound CAL 64 column array loudspeakers have been put in place at the Berner Rathaus (Bern Town Hall) in Switzerland to improve voice intelligibility.
The system can be found in the Grossratssaal, the main legislative chamber of the 15th century Gothic structure, which features challenging acoustics. Daniel Zurwerra of Suhr, Switzerland-based Virtually Audio was reponsible for the project design.
“Voice reinforcement in this space is challenging for several reasons,” said Zurwerra. “First, the reverberation time is more than two seconds, and even higher at some frequencies. We have high background noise levels, and because of aesthetics and historic preservation requirements, loudspeaker placement and positioning is highly restricted. It was clear that beam-steering columns would offer the best results.
“The sound quality and visual aesthetics of CAL are just right. When choosing CAL, I considered the accuracy of simulation data, dedicated drivers for LF and HF, a digital audio network interface, relay closures for fault reports, and options for custom colors and mounting.”
Kilchenmann AG handled system integration under the direction of Michael Schmutz, while Hansjürg Meier of Tonspur AG facilitated technical support for the Meyer Sound portion of the installation.
After the speakers were set up, Zurwerra went about thoroughly measuring and evaluating the system. “The intelligibility figures were very good despite the reverberant room, and the government officials in charge immediately noticed that overall clarity was markedly better,” he recalled. “In addition, the excellent sonic performance of the CALs will allow the system to be used for a wide range of events, including musical performances.”
The new audio arrangement also includes a Biamp Nexia CS digital signal processor, Brähler conference system, Shure wireless mics, and AMX control system.
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