Web Version

New to the PALM Expo this year was the "Compact Indoor Line Array Demo". This novel highlight feature enhanced the appeal of the expo by demoing top-of-the-line, small to medium format line arrays. The expo set a record of sorts, as this was the first time that a compact indoor line array demo was organized anywhere in the world.

The organizers refused to limit the expo to the confines of an outdoor demo and moved this feature to Hall 7 at the Bombay Exhibition Centre this year.

The prime objective of the indoor demo was to assess the tonal quality, dispersion pattern, phase coherency and frequency response of the participating sound systems. The expo invested significantly in acoustic control of the indoor exhibit hall. Acclaimed Electro Acoustic Consultant - Milind Raorane was employed to spearhead this feature. With his guidance, the indoor demo achieved the highest level of acoustic control and monitoring.

Along with the organizers, Raorane first did recce of the site and reviewed the hall sizes and planned the acoustic treatment. The hall area was masked with huge black curtains and the truss was designed to accommodate three brands that were showcasing their respective indoor line array solutions. In order to attain the right SPL, a target MAX SPL of 50dB was set, with tolerance band, both on the SPL and the FRQ (frequency response).

Explaining the delivery of this feature from concept, Raorane says, "The challenge was adverse acoustic environment offered by the untreated Hall (Hall7A). The space has all kinds of negative elements that any sound guy would be afraid to walk into."

The challenge was also to deliver every participant/exhibitor a fairly, neutral position /space to translate to the audience an optimum audition of his product - compact line array! So we decided to design a space artificially built to create an aurally conducive shell for a fixed number of participants.

The design cues were taken from international practices of indoor demos, guidelines from Dolby on aiming multiple speakers for a common area and acoustic solutions for untreated indoor spaces. A design document was drafted (for max 12 Rigs) giving all possible parameters and guidelines to be followed by participant while entering his line-array rig in the demo arena.

Maximum SPL, Max Boxes, Angles, Toe Angles etc. were described. A supporting ACAD was prepared describing the process.

An additional feature of - Real Time SPL monitoring was introduced, wherein visitors and exhibitors could both view the SPLs reading on a Large LED display wall."

The rigging erected by Rich Audio, was also high-tuned for maximum response and the result was a spectacular indoor line array demo.

The change from Outdoor to Indoor was welcomed and embraced by many international manufacturers of major line array brands, who made a bee-line for the hall. The verdict was largely positive, as this demo feature received encouraging responses. Having never witnessed such a demo anywhere in the world, manufacturers who had initially been skeptical about the execution and accomplishment of the feature were pleasantly surprised and highly impressed to see the level of investment, meticulous planning and the high standards with which acoustic fidelity of the line array demo was executed and accomplished.

The Compact Indoor Line Array Demo was put up with 3 brands - Salt Acoustic with the AL18F10s, Beta 3 with the SLA10H and Stonewater with the P800.

The Organizers took a bold decision to continue the DEMO ARENA concept and went all out to make it happen. With an initial slow start, as the word spread around, the arena saw a constant batch of sizeable visitors assembling for the demo; most of them complimenting the effort. The SPL Monitor Video Wall became a selfie point and the response seen over the three days was certainly overwhelming.

The compact indoor line array demo, which attempted to engage the changing ways in which the industry was consuming new products and solutions, succeeded in fulfilling the needs and demands of the rental industry and evinced great interest and support from many line array brands who affirmed their participation in this unique demo in the next edition of the expo. A design team from a known International Brand made a point to compliment the effort and assured their participation in the next edition as the arena wiped out any doubt that they had.

Having garnered a favorable response, the PALM expo team is all set to deliver another successful showcase of Compact Indoor Line Array Demo in the 2019 edition of the expo.