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ACS is music to the ears for Billy Ocean

It's all about his silicon implants, then, as ACS provides T1 and T2 in-ear monitors for Billy Ocean’s 32-date UK tour, writes Paul Watson.

Banbury headquartered ACS supplied Triple Driver T1 and T2 Dual Driver in-ear monitors for Billy Ocean’s 32-date UK tour this year. Despite being a ‘wedge man’ through and through, Ocean learned to embraced the ACS IEMs – which provide 30dB isolation from the outside – after a series of one-on-one mixing sessions with monitor engineer James Brown at his Yamaha PM5D. “During rehearsals, Billy stood next to me and we mixed it song by song to get him a bit more settled,” says Brown, “and after a few shows, he was really happy with them; in a cacophony of two dozen monitors and sidefills, you can’t get that kind of fidelity.” Because Ocean’s twelve-piece band is all on IEMs, FOH engineer Russ Tite says he is able to achieve a far cleaner mix from his Avid Profile console. “With ten wedges up there, it makes a right din – which is fine for some bands,” explains Tite, “but because this band are all musos, in-ear monitors work brilliantly; there’s definitely a new level of clinicalness there now that we didn’t have before.” ACS uses silicon instead of acrylic when making its IEMs, and according to sales account manager, Adam Rhodes, this sets the T1 and T2 models apart from the competition. He believes that using the softer material provides extra comfort for the artist, which ultimately leads to better results. “When singers sing, their ear canals change shape,” says Rhodes, “our silicon in-ears are designed to warm to the body temperature so that they move with the ear canal.” ACS provides IEMs for a number of successful UK artists including Lily Allen and Kasabian; and Rhodes is hopeful that in the next two years, all UK artists will be using ACS products.