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Brussels’ Impérial bar integrates immersive AV TiMax solution with FACE Projects

The vision of Carl de Moncharline, owner and manager of Impérial and several other Brussels venues, was for an ‘immersive environment creating spherical sound experiences’

Private members’ bar Impérial, Brussels, with its vintage atmosphere and jazzy vibe reminiscent of an old-school speakeasy, has integrated an immersive AV solution with TiMax SoundHub and dcontrol, and the concept by Belgium’s design and installation integrator, FACE Projects.

The vision of Carl de Moncharline, owner and manager of Impérial and several other Brussels venues, was for an ‘immersive environment creating spherical sound experiences’.

Simplicity was key to the specification for the venue. FACE CEO, Karel De Piere explained why TiMax was their first choice: “I do not even want to think how we would set up the sound system without TiMax, no other product could provide this level of precise control.”

The TiMax SoundHub-32S spatial audio matrix controls a total of 38 discreet speakers from Electro-Voice. Effective sound control without spillage is a deliberate consequence of the many distributed speaker sources, which help avoid noise pollution for the neighbouring buildings. Having said that, the speakers integrated into the walls and ceilings of the venue are powered by three eight-channel Powersoft Ottocanali amplifiers and a Duecanali for the sub-bass units.

Dave Haydon, director of TiMax developers Out Board, paid a visit to the venue to assist with immersive rendering of the space and programming object-based spatial effects. Zone overlays were created within TiMax to segment the venue space, which can also be aligned across the full venue area. From a static image for live music sets to dynamic movement for evenings of clubbing with a DJ, presets and different spatial effects are defined to suit the requirements of each of the club’s audio configurations and performance formats.

Stijn Vermeiren, FACE Project’s project engineer, added: “One of the set-ups makes soundscapes very simply travel into 180° on two axes, which even at quite low levels gives a very clear spatial feeling.”

The control solution for the AV system is dcontrol, which was developed independently by FACE’s Vermeiren. dcontrol interconnects unrelated AV equipment, dealing with the complex problem of connecting devices that do not natively speak to each other. It links the venue’s devices, synchronising the settings and controls across an open management system not limited by a few brand protocols or closed systems.

Montcharline concluded: “The results are just as I planned for. The building is beautifully historic and we have worked with its style to create an equally beautiful inner space for guests to enjoy, which adapts to the club’s changing needs. I work with FACE because they realise in the space exactly what I ask for and more.”

FACE Projects also recently designed and implemented a TiMax immersive audio research resource for the new Auralisation Sound Lab at Alamire Foundation’s newly created Library of Voices. Read more here.