A.C. Entertainment Technologies (AC-ET) Ltd's Audio division has supplied a second Soundcraft Vi1 digital mixing console to Leeds based rental and technical production specialist 3D Productions. This follows high demand for the console since the company made their first investment.
Soundcraft is one of a number of premium brands for which AC-ET is an accredited UK sub-distributor. The console sales, complete with a Soundcraft Compact Stagebox, were co-ordinated by A.C. Audio's Peter Butler from the company's Northern office.
3D's David Whittlestone decided to purchase the Soundcraft Vi1 consoles after considering many options. He chose them primarily because of the quality of the mic preamps, the competitive price of the console and the flexibility and expandability of the control platform. He adds that the quality of the onboard effects is excellent, "our engineers are all very happy."
3D were so pleased with the first Vi1 console supplied by AC-ET that the second purchase soon followed! David commented "We have always been very happy with AC-ET's service, their knowledge and expertise, as well as their wide range of products."
The Vi1 was the perfect console choice for 3D, offering an extremely comprehensive and cost-effective solution that ticked all the right boxes. It allowed 3D to replace several different desks with Vi1s to provide consistency for engineers and to make it easier to allocate equipment to jobs. “Rather than constantly shuffling desks between jobs when quoting now we can allocate a Vi1 and then top up by sub hiring if we run out. The most Vi1s we have had in use at a time is four which will only go up in the future!”
Using the Compact Stagebox, the Vi1's 32 mic inputs can be expanded to 48 with 16 digital returns, adding an analogue multicore in parallel enables access to the full 64 channels. This sort of channel count is required for some of 3D's regular large classical spectaculars and orchestral work.
Using the Stagebox also means that the Vi1 in 48 channel mode can be run over Cat 5 cable, which is a lot smaller, lighter and easier to handle than copper multicore, it is also extremely stable. They find that a 48 input 16 return channels count is ideal for most of their live band work.
3D has invested heavily in integrating the Compact Stagebox into their existing touring stagebox system. Designed by Dave Catley and Tom Stanley, this includes a 48way input patch from multi-pin sub boxes, a 16 way output patch to multi-pin for connection to amp racks and an analogue split for broadcast or use with different desks. For the digital multicore itself, a high quality combined 2x Cat5, 2x Digital Klotz Audio cable was sourced from AC-ET that enabled the range of the MADI link to be increased to 100m for the FOH multicore.
Throughout much of the summer, both of 3D's Vi1 consoles were out on a 55 date UK tour with the enduringly popular UK singer and performer, Tony Christie. Mixing front of house - using an Alcons LR16 line array system - was Andy Wheeler, with Gareth Harding on monitors. Both of the Vi1 consoles proved to be a huge success.
The Vi1's have also been in action on a variety of other 3D projects and events, including a classical spectacular at Kirkstall Abbey where the Northern Ballet Orchestra played pop classics hits to an audience of 7,000. This spectacular concert was set against the scenic backdrop of the Cistercian Abbey ruins on the banks of the River Aire.
The popular folk singer Kate Rusby tours with one Vi1 at FOH to mix both band and monitors, using all d&b loudspeakers.
A.C. Audio's Peter Butler commented: “David has continued to successfully expand the audio side of his business and now has an extremely impressive inventory at his disposal.”
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