Amptec unifies audio experience at Leopoldsburg Cultural Centre
CC Leopoldsburg01-04-2022 / Live / Acoustics /
In 2021, the Leopoldsburg Cultural Centre in northern Belgium celebrated its 40th anniversary. What started as a modest venture four decades ago has burgeoned into a thriving cultural centre with a hugely varied programme that includes music, theatre, dance, comedy and more, as well as a rich educational programme. To mark the occasion, the venue undertook a comprehensive renovation of the main theatre space, investing in an upgraded sound system, new acoustic treatment, new lighting, new seating and air conditioning. Leopoldsburg CC turned to Amptec for the audio and acoustic treatment requirements.
As Amptec's David Liebens recounts, the biggest issue to resolve was the flutter echo in the middle of the room caused by its unusual hexagonal shape. "A flutter echo occurs when two parallel surfaces reflecting sound are far enough apart that the listener hears the reflections between them as distinct echoes," he explains. "The audible effect is a sort of 'fluttering' as the echoes occur in rapid succession, or a sort of tube-like, hollow sound in smaller spaces. It had been a problem for years at CC Leopoldsburg due to the odd shape of the room, so resolving it was a major priority."
In conjunction with Artnovion, renowned developer of acoustic panels, Amptec performed an acoustic analysis to determine how best to eliminate the flutter echo, which turned out to be in the mid frequency range. An ArrayCalc analysis helped define how to improve the FoH system - which was already d&b.
"We installed a combination of Artnovion Siena mid-range absorber panels and our own Amptec PET full range absorbers against the walls, along with several PET cloud panels against the ceiling in front of the proscenium arch. The cloud panels offer reflection control capabilities which have significantly improved speech intelligibility; overall, we have eliminated unwanted reflections, optimised reverberation time and improved the aesthetics of the room, as the Artnovion panels in particular don't just improve the acoustics, they also look very good," Amptec acstx sales manager Niels Neven explained.
When it came to the sound system, to improve coverage, homogeneity and intelligibility, Amptec optimised the existing system with the addition of several new elements. "We added V-Series point source loudspeakers which offer excellent dispersion characteristics and greatly improve speech intelligibility," notes Liebens. "As we take sustainability serious, Amptec re-used elements from the previous system for the centre cluster. We added a flown Y-SUB as part of the centre cluster as well as ground stacked V-SUBs. The system is rounded off by 5S lipfills with ultra-neat cabling."
As is often the case in multipurpose cultural centres, there is a requirement for user-friendly control and operation to facilitate quick and easy switching between scenarios. Amptec installed and programmed a d&b R90 touch controller which recalls presets at the touch of a button and enables straightforward input signal routing to different loudspeaker groups.
The results speak for themselves. Leopoldsburg is now ready to host national and international artists with confidence, and the audience in Leopoldsburg captures a new sound experience," says Liebens in conclusion.