On New Year’s Eve, around 17,000 gathered at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena to see in 2014 with renowned DJ and producer Bassnectar and a Meyer Sound LEO set-up.
To ensure the best possible audio quality for all visitors, the event featured a 360-degree rotating stage, as well as the biggest LEO large-scale sound reinforcement system to date.
“The sound was spectacular, and incredibly even for an in-the-round setup,” commented Brendan Hoffman, FOH engineer and production manager. “From FOH at one end of the arena up to the stage and the higher seating sections, differences were negligible. It was a gut punch on the floor and a gut punch at the top level.”
Provided by VER Tour Sound, the LEO system consisted of 96 LEO-M line array loudspeakers arranged in four arrays of 14-each for long-end throws, and four arrays of ten-each for the short sides. Four MICA line array speakers completed each array as down fill, while eight extra MICA loudspeakers were spread around the stage as front fill. To achieve powerful low-end reinforcement, four arrays of 12-each 1100-LFC low-frequency control elements were flown, augmented on the floor by 12 1100-LFC loudspeakers and 20 700-HP subs deployed in cardioid pairs around the circular stage.
The system was aligned and optimised by a Galileo Callisto loudspeaker management system comprising two Galileo 616 AES and 12 Galileo Callisto 616 array processors. The low-end arrays were configured and timed to steer energy in a clean "donut" pattern out to the attendees and away from the stage. VER Tour Sound’s Doug McKinley and Chad Fuller were responsible for system design.
“Obviously the bottom end with all the 1100-LFCs was incredibly loud, but it was still clean with tight transients – the crux of this style of music,” Hoffman stated. “It was solid down to 28 Hz.”
Hoffman used an Avid SC48 desk fitted with Waves plug-ins and augmented with outboard Avalon compressor-equalizers. Monitor engineer Jayson Pietri also had an SC48 at hid disposal, while Bassnectar's himself performed with a Shure wireless microphone system and SM58 capsule.
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