Virginia Tech’s Fralin Biomedical Research Institute is an influential research center at the forefront of new preventative and therapeutic technologies. It operates a research funding portfolio of over $114 million and recently completed construction of a new research facility in Roanoke, forty-five minutes from the main Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg, Virginia. The facility’s main atrium will be used for presentations, but architectural considerations prevented local AV integration firm RTW Media, of Oilville, Virginia, from locating loudspeakers in conventional locations. Instead, they installed a Danley SBH10 column-form, point-source loudspeaker with exceptional pattern control and feedback resistance above the room’s impressive video wall using an unconventional horizontal orientation.
“We installed a forty-foot wide video wall in the atrium of the new Fralin Biomedical Research Institute’s new Roanoke facility, and they wanted sound reinforcement to go along with it for the entire atrium space,” explained Zack Guida, logistics manager at RTW Media. “The perfect place for loudspeakers would have been to the left and right of the open area, out ahead of the zone where anyone who is presenting will stand. However, those walls are covered in ‘Hokie Stone,’ a locally-sourced limestone named after the university’s Hokie mascot. The school said that they didn’t want anything on the Hokie Stone; it would be a deal-breaker.”
He continued, “Our only option was to fly a loudspeaker above the video wall. But that ran the risk of energizing the walls and ceiling, which would in turn reduce intelligibility and promote feedback. Danley’s patented point-source technologies offer the kind of extreme pattern control that we needed, and Danley’s pattern control, combined with its phase-coherence, goes a long way toward minimizing feedback problems.” Zack worked with Danley engineers to find the right Danley model for the unique considerations necessitated by the architecture of the space. “The Danley SBH10 column-form loudspeaker ticked all the boxes, including the requirement that it look as good as it sounds!”
The Danley SBH10 is usually oriented vertically, where its incredible 140deg horizontal and just 10deg vertical coverage pattern fills a typical room with sound without energizing the ceiling. Zack and his team rotated the Institute’s SBH10 and mounted it horizontally above the video wall. It disappears aesthetically and yet delivers clear, well-defined sound across the atrium floor without energizing the walls or ceiling. Zack also specified three small Danley Cube loudspeakers for delayed fill under balconies that are in the shadows of the SBH10. A four-channel Danley DNA 5K4C with onboard DSP powers all four loudspeakers and provides modest conditioning to complement the acoustics of the atrium.
“In addition, Jon Clarke, RTW’s dedicated sales engineer for Virginia Tech projects, worked with the school to deliver the best AV solutions to the fifty-plus classrooms, boardrooms, and huddle spaces throughout the new building with a Danley sound reinforcement solution and Planar video wall,” noted Zack. “Everyone involved is pleased with the outcome. The Institute had a big presentation to VIPs a few days after the installation and it went off beautifully. With the Danley SBH10, you can stand pretty much anywhere in the atrium and it doesn’t even think about feeding back!”