The TiMax6+2 SoundHub-R16 and Tracker System brings sanity to Swiss comic Marco Rima’s latest tour production, Die Patienten, reports Paul Watson. Out Board’s German distributor, Pro Audio Technik, made its first sale to fellow German company Sugar Veranstaltungstechnik GmbH (long-time sound supplier for Marco Rima’s productions) for work on the highly unusual new show.
The production’s bizarre plot sees members of a mental care institution form a rock group and, in a bid to escape their closed environment, they fulfil their destiny by winning a band competition. The high-energy production features on-stage rock performances and is touring Switzerland until November.
TiMax Tracker (TT) Tags are worn by principle actors and chorus members, allowing their locations on stage to be continuously tracked by three radar-scanner TT Sensors: two mounted proscenium left and right pointing back and across the stage, with a single rear centre-positioned TT Sensor pointing forward.
The TiMax2 SoundHub-R16 receives the tracking information as a continuous MIDI stream, which it then converts into seamless delay-matrix crossfades in the vocal PA to achieve corresponding vocal localisations in real-time.
“The great thing about TiMax Tracker is the flexibility we have in picking peripheral mounting positions for the TT Sensors to achieve the most reliable tracking,” comments Dave Haydon, director of Out Board. “It takes ten minutes to enter a set of Sensor co-ordinates that will work for the whole tour, then our Auto-Calibration procedure takes just a couple of minutes to map the whole stage in 3D at each venue.”
The system was specified by award-winning Swiss sound designer Thomas Strebel. His organisation, Audiopool, is a unique collective of sound engineers and system technicians harvested from the cream of AV production students taught by Strebel in Zurich.
“A tour like Die Patienten will always benefit from the addition of the TiMax2 SoundHub-R16 and the Tracker System; it really helps the audience keep up with what is going on and where,” reveals Strebel. “The TiMax delay management ensures that the audio really packs a punch, and the acting and the sound support are very well-matched.”