d&b audiotechnik


Rolf Sanchez tours with Soundscape technology


Rolf Sanchez is currently the biggest and most successful export from the Netherlands into the field of Latin music. With no less than three number one hits in the US Billboard ‘Tropical Songs’ chart, numerous Latin music award nominations and sold-out shows in Central and Latin America, Sanchez has now returned to take his native Holland by storm. His recent Dutch tour, which culminates at the Luxor in Rotterdam, breaks new ground with Sanchez being the first artist to tour the Netherlands with a Soundscape system from d&b supplied by Belgian full service production specialists, B-Lighting.


The system was designed and engineered by Amptec Holland’s live sound sales manager, Sjoerd Terpstra, who is also the audio engineer for the tour. “Latin music is very complex with lots of percussion and many complex rhythmic guitar and piano parts,” explains Terpstra. “By mimicking the location of the instruments on stage in Soundscape, the listener is able understand the things he hears far better than with a traditional L/R system. Soundscape enables the listener to connect the visible with the audible source, which enriches the experience enormously. One audience member came to me after the show to say he’d learned a lot about the instruments during the show. He felt more connected to the artist than he had ever been.”
The second reason for going with Soundscape was simply that it had never been done before in the Netherlands, and Terpstra was keen to blaze the trail with Amptec. “The Rolf Sanchez theater tour was the perfect opportunity to trial a Soundscape system, both musically and logistically,” he declares. “Touring in NL needs to be quick, effective and cost-efficient, otherwise engineers and management just aren’t interested. I designed the Soundscape system with some of my colleagues at Amptec, and even in its smallest form, it’s way more powerful than stereo. Also, believe it or not, even though it’s complex, it’s really quick to implement.”


Terpstra designed a simple system of ten Y10P point source cabinets flown as five pairs equally spaced above the front of the stage. The upper speakers serve the balcony and the lower ones are for the parterre. Eight T10Ps are serve as front fill on the edge of the stage for the biggest fans in the front rows. Four V-SUBs complete the lineup, and of course the DS100 signal processor supplies the digital horsepower to turn it into an immersive experience.
“As with all d&b PA systems we follow the workflow from the Arraycalc simulation software to the R1 remote control software which controls the amps and the DS100,” continues Terpstra. “We draw the hall, and then adapt our sources in the sketch so the processor knows where the speakers are and which calculations it has to make. Installing and setting up the system takes an hour with two people. Then it’s business as usual. Check the time alignment, do some EQing,… and you’re ready to go.”


“What surprises me most is the fact that we could cover venues like Zaantheater in Zaandam (capacity 890) with just ten speakers. With Soundscape, the energy is divided differently across the speakers which results in enormous headroom. We actually had to turn it down a couple of times during soundcheck. It’s incredibly powerful, and of course the sound is unparalleled.”


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