Community Simulates Disaster

Belfast (November 9, 2009)--Zest Audio recently installed a high power Community sound system for Lightstep Technologies in its demonstration facilities; Lightstep produces products that help people escape from life threatening situations.
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Belfast (November 9, 2009)--Zest Audio recently installed a high power Community sound system for Lightstep Technologies in its demonstration facilities; Lightstep produces products that help people escape from life threatening situations.

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Following many well publicized disasters in recent years, involving major loss of life in high rise buildings, nightclubs, underground stations and at sea, Lightstep has developed systems that represent a step forward in Life Safety systems.

Age old standard signs above doors, quickly obscured by smoke, are incapable of determining whether the exit is actually safe to go through, or if it will lead into a greater risk area. Lightstep determined that a system had to be designed which would take advantage of all the development in real time sensors; a system which would use intelligence gathered from sensors throughout areas and entire buildings, no matter how high or complex, to guide people in the building out to safety. Lightstep has created the world's first Situation Sensitive, telemetry reactive Intelligent Evacuation System.

"There still remains a gap between understanding a need and actually investing in systems that cannot be seen and, hopefully, will never be used," explains Lightstep's Director of Communications, John Morrissey. "To help overcome,, this we have created a truly effective demonstration facility that leaves visitors in no doubt of the need and of the effectiveness of a real life-saving system."

Lightstep has built two demonstration suites - a subway station and a stairwell, as would be found in any public building from an office to a hotel or nightclub. Both are simulators in which visitors can experience real-life disasters. The lights go out, sound tracks play at real-life levels and smoke fills the environment.

"Understanding the need for real impact, we based the audio system on eight Community R.25 loudspeakers for power and quality," said Zest Audio MD, David Honeyford. "These give astounding sound levels with absolute clarity, and no distortion to reduce the illusion." Four Community CLOUD4 ceiling speakers provide additional coverage and the system is powered and controlled by two Panasonic BX-500 receivers, with two Panasonic DVD players providing the source. This is a dual demo suite and is installed in a 7.1 configuration, with three Audica Professional active MICROsubs.

"We wanted a facility that could truly shock," concludes Morrissey, "and Zest has supplied the audio for this beyond expectations; the realism is frightening. You can feel the hairs on the back of your neck stand up and your chest tighten as with a sense of real panic. The sound effects are absolutely real and the subs are positioned tight against the stairwell, so you can feel the low frequency rumble in the building as well as hear it. By creating this very real disaster simulation we most effectively prove our systems".

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