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Adamson’s Project Energia gets off to strong start

Phase One of Adamson System Engineering’s ‘Project Energia’ roll-out has been met with much acclaim in Asia, Europe and the US. Dave Robinson find out why the new ‘covert’ technology is generating such enthusiasm.

Beta-testing of Adamson’s ‘semi-secret’ Energia PA system in Europe, the US and Asia has been met with much approval, reports the Canadian loudspeaker company. 

Ken ‘Pooch’ Van Druten, mixing Linkin Park in Jakarta (stage pictured), declares the new E15 speaker in combination with Adamson’s renowned T21 sub to be “bad ass”, while Snake Newton, FOH for Duran Duran on their recent US tour, adds “the E15 delivered every time; the mid-range definition and low-mid punch is incredible”.

The Project Energia initiative was conceived after years spent analysing what Adamson Systems Engineering describes as “the inefficiencies found in sound reinforcement and with performance venue optimisation”.

Primary components of Energia include a series of new loudspeaker systems, with networkable Class D amplifier modules, DSP, cable and power distribution, AVB network hardware with software integration of control, 3D simulation and diagnostics. 

Phase One of the rollout – ‘mechanical field testing’ – began in July 2011 when Adamson unveiled the E15 line source system with a series of strategic beta partners. 8th Day Sound (US), Wigwam Acoustics (UK), Fluge (Spain) and Big Daddy Productions (Indonesia) have all taken delivery of the E15. Additional Energia Beta systems are now in place with distribution partners DV2 in France, Adamson Europe GmbH in Germany, and in Singapore with long-time partner Team 108. 

AS PSNE went to press, MPM France had also been added to this list, and will be putting the E15s to work on a tour for German rock heroes The Scorpions. Adamson also confirmed talks were underway with three more hire companies in France, Australia and the US.

Getting it right from the start

Brock Adamson, president and CEO, comments: “Phase One of Energia is designed to ensure the highest acoustic and mechanical performance of the E15, while we simultaneously begin testing our new three-dimensional Blueprint simulation software. Once we’re finished evaluating transducers, sound chambers and the mechanical elements of the system, we will introduce our new Class D amplifier modules, Power Distribution and Ground Control system for Phase 2.

“We did not want to simply repackage our old systems and offer them as though they were something new. On the contrary, we wanted to provide something exciting that hasn’t been done. Pushing the boundaries of technology is what makes our industry great. Our team is very pleased with the feedback and support coming from our field test partners so far. We couldn’t ask for a better team of industry professionals to help us bring Project Energia to life.”

The beta-tests, across three continents, have been met with praise from engineers and crew. Duran Duran’s long-time FOH engineer, Snake Newton, and Eighth Day Sound ran with Adamson’s Project Energia for the bands recent six-week North American tour. 

As the tour wrapped up, Newton commented: “When I was approached to test drive Energia in the beta phase, I had absolutely no reservations. Eighth Day Sound provided great support on the tour and the E15 delivered every time. The mid-range definition and low-mid punch is incredible and there was no sign of power compression at any point. This cannot be said of many other systems out there. Adamson has always produced great speakers and I look forward to seeing the next phase completed.”

In Asia, Big Daddy productions based in Jakarta, Indonesia together with Team 108, Adamson’s distributor for Southeast Asia, came together to provide a large scale E15 system for two back-to-back events: the Big Wave Festival and a major Linkin Park gig. “In keeping with tradition of making the best-sounding speaker boxes in the world, Adamson have outdone themselves,” said Van Druten. “The E15 combined with the T21 is a force to be reckoned with. This changes everything. Watch out, there is a new kid on the block, and he is a bad ass.”

From a trickle to a flood

In Europe, Adamson’s Spanish distributor Seesound, together with sound provider Fluge, arranged the first E15 system on the continent to premiere at the Low Cost Festival in Benidorm, Spain featuring Mika and Ok Go! among many others. The festival, held at the end of July, garnered much praise from the local mainstream press which featured various stories on the event itself, and surprisingly on Adamson’s choice of Spain for the European launch of the beta project. Now ready for a full tour, Fluge is putting the E15s to the test with the Spanish metal band Los Marea.

Meanwhile Wigwam in the UK has its beta system scheduled for forthcoming shows by The Saturdays. For the time being, Adamson Systems Engineering is remaining fairly tight-lipped about the actual technology used in the package.

“We’re trickling Energia’s details to market as the project evolves,” comments Jesse Adamson, director of sales and marketing. “As it is much more than a new loudspeaker, we don’t want to put an emphasis on any one component.

The picture is much bigger. The E15 in Phase 1 only scratches the surface of what we have coming with Phase 2 in the new year.” 

Adamson has also reported that it is limiting the production of the E15 system to ensure the quality, performance and market control during Phase 1. 

Energia Phase Two will be unveiled at Frankfurt 2012.