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Harman provides Rich Mix in Shoreditch

Shoreditch Arts Centre has upgraded its live room with a Soundcraft Vi1 and a JBL VRX line array, writes Paul Watson

Rich Mix is Shoreditch’s multi-arts and community centre; and its 450-capacity live room has recently undergone an audio overhaul in the shape of a JBL VRX line array system and a Soundcraft Vi1 digital console. The five-story industrial building previously housed a clothing factory; and a few years back, Rich Mix opened three cinema screens showing world cinema and first-run movies. Now it is running a variety of events in the bar area, which has led to the audio transformation. “We had issues with our speakers and needed to upgrade,” explains technical manager Glenford Barnes. “So we decided to go the whole way and change to an easier-to-operate live mixing desk at the same time.” On a fixed budget and in search of a versatile system for speech reproduction as well as music, Barnes turned to Harman Pro’s distributor, Sound Technology. “I’ve bought Harman equipment in the past, “ Barnes adds, “and as soon as the system was demoed, I was sold.” Southeastern Audio supplied and installed two JBL VRX932LAP 12″ two-way powered line array loudspeakers; and a pair of VRX918SP 18” powered subwoofers. “The VRX line arrays give us much better coverage, eliminating the dead area we had before,” says Barnes. “The system delivers not only the power, but the clarity too.” A Soundcraft Vi1 now sits at FOH position, which Glenford is a fan of for its ease of use; and says it’s particularly favoured by engineers that are used to analogue as it behaves in a similar fashion.

“We’ve had eight to ten different engineers now working the Vi1 and they all love it,” he insists. “Several had already trained on the Vi6, so were instantly familiar with the Vi1’s interface.” The finishing touch is a brand new control booth which is situated at the back of the room to provide better sightlines, along with a single-wire CAT5 infrastructure. The East London venue is open seven days a week from 9am-11am.