VERSE in Los Angeles audaciously incorporated the sound quality of a premier recording studio into a relaxed yet elegant supper club. To ensure the ultimate listening experience, VERSE features a Meyer Sound Constellation acoustics system along with a direct reinforcement system based on ULTRA-X40 point source loudspeakers.
For more than five years, the bold restaurant project had been a sideline passion for Manny Marroquin, a Grammy-winning mix engineer who sculpts the sound of hits by — among many others — Alicia Keys, Lizzo, Post Malone, John Mayer and Bruno Mars.
“I have other partners in this project, but ultimately VERSE has been my baby,” says Manny, who not coincidentally also owns the legendary Larrabee Studios located next door. “In most restaurants, sound quality takes a back seat when it comes to planning and budgeting. But in my experience, and this has been confirmed in studies, the sound in restaurants often is annoying and even fatiguing. When you’re yelling across the table without really being aware of it, you’re not having a good time and you probably won’t want to come back.”
To sample the ambient room sound, the Constellation system deploys 24 miniature cardioid microphones around the space. After processing through an 11-module D-Mitri® digital audio platform, the desired room characteristics are mixed with the background music program and distributed to a total of 52 self-powered loudspeakers: 41 UP-4slim full range loudspeakers and 11 MM-10XP miniature subwoofers.
At the front end of the reinforcement system is an SSL Live L300 digital console, situated in an isolated sound booth and linked via a dedicated fiber optic connection to a digital hub at the adjacent Larrabee Studios. The booth also is equipped with a pair of Meyer Sound Amie precision studio monitors. For live recording sessions, VERSE enjoys free access to Larrabee’s world-class microphone locker and stock of instruments, including an immaculate Yamaha C7 grand piano.
Rounding out the full Meyer Sound complement are a pair of UP-4slim loudspeakers and an MM-10XP subwoofer in the private room; six Ashby-8C loudspeakers in the restrooms; and four Ashby-8C loudspeakers at the chef’s table. All audio systems were installed by Sound Image of Escondido under the supervision of project manager Justin Lucas.