Millikin University upgrades with Martin Audio TORUS

Millikin University’s Decatur Kaeuper Hall, a 167-seat auditorium, now has a white Martin Audio TORUS system, matched to the space’s décor.

In fact, it was the hall’s first permanently installed sound system. Designer Graeme Brown from Advanced Audio & Lighting Systems (the company leading the install) commented:  “There was no PA in there previously, they had just been using speakers on sticks.” The space was in need of renovation, especially due to the University’s reliance on the space as their primary event-holding location. This included functions ranging from lectures, to individual recitals, opera rehearsals, guest performances, and intimate concerts.

Brown’s initial instinct had been to specify a WPM line array, from the Wavefront Performance series. But quickly recognising the room was too small for a line array, he quickly turned his attention to Martin Audio’s TORUS constant curvature, knowing this to be perfect for the throw distance and dynamics of the room.

Brown stated: “TORUS actually provided a much more even coverage pattern (due to its size), and thanks to the wood frame (of the hall) we could rig it hard and tight to the ceiling—in fact it was a super clean install.”

Sensing a slight dead zone centre stage,  he added a Martin Audio CDD10 coaxial differential dispersion speaker over the proscenium arch. Low frequency extension was provided by an SX118 single 18in sub mounted on each side behind each TORUS array. The system was powered by an iKON iK42 and iK81 multichannel amplifiers.

The company had worked diligently on creating the optimum outcome, carrying out modelling and pre-vis in the EASE environment, with assistance from Martin Audio’s Joe Lima.  Lima commented: “We made good use of the asymmetrical horn flares,” describing that the adjustable horizontal pattern could be adjusted to 75° via the Dynamic Horn Flare.

Once TORUS was fired up, the results were palpable for all who heard it. Graeme Brown reported: ‘The tuning experience was wonderful—really quick and simple, and one of the fastest system tunes I can remember doing. There were minimum EQ changes, and it immediately came alive. The system was very responsive, and extremely well behaved, as is the room itself.”

Brown concluded: “TORUS appears to be an extremely versatile system, it’s the second one we’ve done but the first one I’ve done vertically. These boxes are certainly pretty magical, and the University is in love with the system.”

As of 23 October 2023, Advanced Audio & Lighting Systems are discussing the next phase of infrastructure upgrades, which they hope to complete when they return to replace the old lighting and dimmer structures.