One of the finest theatres in regional Australia, Rockhampton’s Pilbeam Theatre is the focal point for performing arts in Central Queensland. It offers a diverse range of productions all year round, featuring the best local, national, and international entertainers. Pilbeam Theatre is owned and operated by Rockhampton Regional Council.
When the time came to purchase and install a new PA system into the theatre, it was done in true country-style – with a shoot-out!
“We began the selection process with a PA shootout,” explained Matthias Conway, Senior Technician at the venue. “We were deciding between an Electro Voice EVA line-array loudspeaker system, Nexo’s GEO S12’s, and a JBL VRX system. We flew the EVA system, comprising two EVA-2082S-906 and two EVA-2082S-920 boxes, on the left side of the venue, and flew four Nexo GEO S12 speakers on the right side. We used one Dynacord H5000 amp to power all the EV boxes, with no processing at all. Although we didn’t use subs with the EV boxes, there was still a very well-defined bottom end, and the sound that came from the boxes after just ‘throwing’ them up was quite stunning.”
In true professional style, Matthias still ran the other systems for comparison, but the unanimous voting was for the EVA line array, which delivered the sound that they were looking for and really suited the venue’s application.
The final PA system comprises four EVA-2082S-906 cabinets (two per side on top of the array due to the smaller vertical dispersion), four EVA-2082S-920 cabinets (two per side on the bottom of the array), one EVF-112S/126 for centre fill, and two XCS312 cardioid subs hung centrally in the room.
”We also purchased four Xi1082 boxes for front fill and used the EV NetMax N8000 to process the whole venue,” added Matthias. “That includes the onstage foldback – also EV boxes – plus the Dynacord PowerH 5000 amplifiers that drive the system.”
Once the PA system was permanently cabled up and in position, Bosch senior engineer and system specialist Bryan Davidson flew in to tune the system. Bryan commented on how easy it was to align using SysTune, which now has a NetMax N8000 plug-in, allowing him to tune the system in real time.
”Everything ran smoothly, other than making some small shading adjustments on the boxes, which was as simple as pulling the back panel off and changing some settings,” remarked Matthias. “Bryan set up the NetMax system for us – processing, equalising, and delaying – and then showed us how to access the NetMax settings in a user-friendly way through the IRIS-Net software program.”
IRIS-Net allows Matthias to save user presets to the NetMax’s memory, for recall at a later date as needed. It also has the capabilities to remotely control and monitor the power amps and loudspeakers, plus it’s an easy tool for troubleshooting, if required. Bryan designed a user-friendly, intuitive, and elegant GUI within IRIS-Net – the proven software platform that reliably controls many of the Electro-Voice DSPs, amplifiers, and wireless systems under one network.
“We are very happy with the EV EVA line array installed in our venue,” concluded Matthias. “It has a sweet, smooth sound, with excellent coverage over the room.”