Tokyo concert hall welcomes L-Acoustics KARA system

Bestec Audio, L-Acoustics’ Japanese distributor, has supplied a KARA/KUDO WST line source system to the Orchard Hall, Shibuya, Tokyo.

The large-scale cultural facility was the first of its kind in Japan, comprising a concert hall, theatre, museum, a cinema, cafes and art shops. Recently its 2,150-seater Orchard Hall underwent a major refit, including the installation of a central system of 12 KARA cabinets with six KUDO, three SB18i subwoofers and one 115XT HiQ coaxial per side. An additional four 115XT HiQ cover the central section of the first floor level, while four 12XT coaxials take care of the third floor seats. Eight white 8XTi from L-Acoustics’ installation range cover each side of the balconies, with five standard 8XT for the under-balcony area of the second floor and two for front of stage. The entire system is controlled and driven by LA4 and LA8 amplified controllers.

The system was installed by SC Alliance Sound Craft Engineering. “When I heard the sound in the hall, I felt it was natural and not mechanical,” said Mr Ishikawa, the hall’s chief operator. “This hall is usually used for classical music and orchestras, and I thought the sound from the instruments and the sound from the speaker system should blend seamlessly together. We compared systems from several manufacturers and the L-Acoustics system produced a sound which was exactly as I imagined it should be.”

The hall had previously incorporated a point source system, as Mr Ishikawa explained: “Since we changed the system to an L-Acoustics line source array, the sound has become uniform throughout the entire hall, and we can hear the outline of the sound very clearly, with very little phase interference. When performers from abroad hear that we have an L-Acoustics system, they are very pleased as the brand has such a good international reputation. Once I tell visiting rental companies that we have installed KUDO as the L and R system, they always decide to use just the house system, without adding their own speakers. Consequently, because there are no speakers on the stage, the whole area can be used for performances. And as the entire stage can be seen from every seat, we can sell as many tickets as possible.”

Mr Wakui from SC Alliance Sound Craft, added: “The most important point for us was that the sound should suit the hall, and when I compared the systems from different manufacturers, I thought L-Acoustics would be the best.”

The KUDO side speakers are mounted in chambers at either side of the stage, and the concert hall’s technical staff have designed a special base that angles them to the correct position, according to the application. “We will be having productions that require more dynamic sound in the future and that was the main reason we chose KUDO, as it has enough capacity and expression for this,” continued Mr Wakui. “And as the horizontal directivity of KUDO is changeable, there is no unnecessary reflected sound from the chambers. This is definitely one of the system’s benefits.”

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