Gadsden City High School, northeast Alabama's newest class 6A high school, opened in June 2006. The $30+ million dollar project has 290,000 square-feet under roof, sitting on a 53-acre gated campus. The school offers more than 150 courses, including many for advanced college placement, an augmented foreign language department, a highly decorated fine arts program, and comprehensive technical training. The facility has seventy classrooms, three computer labs, five science labs, a high tech media center, a broadcast studio, three music rehearsal studios, two gymnasiums, and an 8,000-seat stadium.
In addition, the fine arts program was blessed with an 800-seat, state-of-the-art auditorium that is abundantly capable of meeting the department, and the school and community's many and varied needs. The school hired dB Audio & Video to design and install its sound system and to consult with the architects regarding acoustics. Keith Armstrong, dB's Alabama system advisor, centered the new system on a Danley Sound Labs loudspeaker system.
The first thing Armstrong did was to persuade the architects to introduce curves, angled soffet, and more acoustically forgiving materials to their auditorium design. Says Armstrong, "Since I had been a choral student of his many years ago, I new Paul Edmondson, Gadsden's performing arts director. I knew what he was looking for. He wanted a musical-sounding system that would be flexible enough to convey any type of music gracefully and simply. The Danley Loudspeakers fit that requirement."
His design consists of an exploded mono speaker system composed of two hard-packed Danley Sound Labs SH-50 full-range loudspeakers for mains and two SH-100s placed 25 feet on either side for side fills. In addition, two SH-100s hang inside the proscenium for stage wash and choir monitors. "Pattern control was important," states Armstrong. "Although we were able to reconfigure the room somewhat, it still possessed parallel side walls. Other loudspeakers claim to have tight pattern control, but once you go below 800Hz they're omni-directional. Not so with the Danleys. They maintain their pattern control down to very low frequencies. Thus, we were able to keep energy off the side walls and to avoid nasty flutter echoes."
A Danley Sound Labs TH-112 subwoofer extends the low frequency response of the system to the mid 20Hz range and is suspended just above the center SH-50s.
In addition to the main Danley system, a distributed audio system of Atlas Sound FAP42T ceiling speakers was used in the foyer and both dressing rooms. Yamaha P7000 and P3500 amplifiers power the main speaker system and a QSC CX-404 four-channel amplifier powers the monitors and the distributed speaker system. A Bi-Amp Audia SOLO digital signal processor provides all the signal processing to the system and a Bi-Amp Volume/Select 8 gives the school the ability to run a simple audio system from the stage. A Yamaha DM1000 digital console with 16 channels of external mic pre-amps gives the school a total of 32 channels of audio.