Audiotonas recently won a tender to renew the audio system at the 400-capacity Juozas Miltinis Theatre in Lithuania. Situated in Panevezys, the fifth largest city in the country, the Grand Hall has been upgraded with a Martin Audio Wavefront Precision (WPM) line array, recently accoladed with a Queen’s Award for Innovation.
According to Audiotonas chief audio engineer (and system designer), Vytautas Stasiukaitis, an old-school point source PA system, more than 20 years old, was no longer fit for purpose. “The performance was not acceptable by today’s standards, and so the theatre wanted a high-tech sound system in which performance features could be optimised according to the architecture of the room,” he explained. “As the most cost-efficient system which met all the requirements of the Theatre Wavefront Precision was the way to go.”
It was the facility’s first experience with Martin Audio and the sound engineers of Miltinis Drama Theatre were certainly impressed. “This was particularly the case after we installed and tuned the system with DISPLAY software,” continued Stasiukaitis. “The intelligibility, consistency and frequency response were outstanding throughout the entire audience area. We set the back wall as a ‘Hard Avoid’ area because there was no acoustic treatment on the wall and that helped to maintain excellent audio performance with minimum reflections.”
The Grand Hall itself is single tier with raked seating. “We could see this as a perfect opportunity for a WPM installation,” he observed. “We provided 12 modules per side, which is why we did not need front fills — the location of the hangs itself and the quantity of modules ensured coverage of the front rows. Also, the size [of the enclosures] and overall performance made this the perfect choice.”
The mid-highs were underpinned by six SX118 subwoofers, with custom-made hardware enabling them to be flown near the main hangs. “Rear rejection was great, even in low frequencies, thanks to the cardioid setup,” he confirmed.
In addition, CDD8’s (two per side and two each at the rear of the auditorium) were detailed for theatrical effects surround. Finally, four Martin Audio XE300 have been provided for reference monitoring and a stage system comprises four CDD12 and an SX118 sub.
The main PA is run off a pair of iKON iK42 amplifiers, set to 3-box resolution. “Although the resolution was not particularly high, it was sufficient for this setup,” continued the designer. “A further five iK42 were used for subs, stage PA, stage monitors and surround speakers.”
The overall system upgrade also includes a new mixing desk, stageboxes, microphones and audio editing software, with all audio distribution via Dante. The amplifier racks were split into two sets in order to keep the same cable lengths running to the left and right side hangs.
This elegant solution has certainly met with approval from the client. The Theatre’s audio engineer Saulius Požerskas says the team is delighted with the system “as it sounds very crisp and clear throughout the entire audience area, and the overall experience for audiences is great.”