An Allen & Heath iLive system was an integral part of the audio infrastructure for a 16,000-capacity outdoor classical music event featuring the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and narration by actor Robert Powell.
PA supplier for the spectacular event was locally-based company SRD Group, which had to accommodate a very compact FOH footprint because of crowd sight line issues. According to SRD MD Stuart Roberts, “iLive was the obvious choice, as its flexible, distributed audio architecture makes it easy to build high capacity systems within a small footprint.”
The main FOH system consisted of an Allen & Heath iDR10 modular MixRack loaded with 64 inputs – 56 analogue and eight digital – connected to an iLive-80 Control Surface with a mixture of analogue and digital local outputs. There was an EtherSound digital split to the Monitor system, which comprised an iDR0 miniRack connected to an iLive-112 Control Surface with 24 analogue local outputs.
The dedicated orchestral system, meanwhile, consisted of two iDR10 MixRacks loaded with 128 inputs – 120 analogue and eight digital – running in ‘DualRack’ mode, feeding 16 digital outputs (eight digital feeds to the FOH system and eight to locally required outputs), with 16 analogue outputs as back-up.
All the MixRack and Control Surface connections, except the monitor system, were via Gigabit Network Smart Switches with fibre optic interfaces over deployable tactical fibre cable. WiFi networks were installed on all three iLive systems to allow remote access to control functions via iLive’s Editor control software. All the iLive systems and network interfaces were powered via UPS units for protection from variations and interruptions in the temporary AC supply.
“Everything worked according to plan,” said orchestral sound mixer Ian Barfoot. “iLive is still one of the best-sounding, most intuitive digital desks around, which is why it was chosen. With the added flexibility of ‘DualRack’ mode, the channel count is doubled per system without compromise, making the choice of iLive even easier. After the event we received a lot of compliments from the artists taking part who remarked on the quality of the monitor sound, and to the best of our knowledge there were no complaints from the crowd regarding any issues with sound or coverage. We would definitely do it the same way again – the combination of good input sources with an excellent mixing console makes everyone’s job much more simple.”