Donegal, Ireland (August 23, 2004)–A BSS Audio Soundweb engine has been put to use in an offshore pilgrimage center in the north of Ireland. Situated in the county of Donegal, Lough Derg has for centuries been referred to by pilgrims–who visit the island retreat for solitude, fasting and praying–as “Saint Patrick’s Purgatory.”
It might be a purgatory for sound installers, too, as the facility, St. Patrick’s Basilica by its proper name, suffered from an eight-second reverberation time. Acoustician Martin Grainger of Omagh-based Grainger Communication, came in to install a fully new audio system, and that process began with a Soundweb and his EASE modeling software.
“The Basilica was built around 1910 and the sound has been like this for years,” he said. “We are looking at providing a complete acoustic treatment via systematic upgrade, but I knew that Soundweb would immediately provide a level of control.”
In fact, Grainger, a member of the Institute of Acoustics (IOA), had introduced both EASE and Soundweb to the principals the previous year. “I gave them a brief demonstration, showing other places we had treated, to explain what reverberation time was all about and how intelligibility might be improved. I told them we could provide all the tools in a small box, with little in the way of user controls.”
A 9088iiMM, accompanied by a 9010 ‘Jellyfish’ Remote panel, was specified and ordered from BSS Audio’s Irish distributor, Reynolds of Raphoe. “We were able to set up a whole series of scenarios using Soundweb and the Jellyfish, which is mounted on a lectern in the sanctuary area,” Grainger explained. “The officiating clergy can simply recall the ceremony they wish to activate via the presets. There’s nothing further to be done.”