Lisbon, Portugal (August 14, 2018)—When it comes to a corporate event, the production always keeps the client at the center of the audience’s attention. Certainly that was the case recently when U.S. pet nutrition company Hill’s held an in-the-round corporate presentation in Lisbon, but the event producer, Harvest Productions, aimed to go a step further by immersing the participants via d&b audiotechnik’s d&b Soundscape technology.
“We have always done 360 in-the-round style presentations for Hill’s,” explained Josh Koan, Harvest’s project leader for this event. “And we always wanted to create a totally immersive experience for the delegates that places them within the context of the content we have created.
“For the Hill’s event we were in a large ballroom at a hotel in Lisbon, Portugal,” continued Koan. “A central stage was used for all speech-based presentation, the delegates surrounded the stage, and they in turn were surrounded by a 360-video panorama…. The video content was a mix: images of pets doing what they do, maybe cats transiting from one screen to another by walking in and out of wardrobes; plus, our team shot footage in and around Lisbon to give the delegates a sense of place. We then paired that to multi-track recordings made at the same time so we could paint an accurate audio portrait, giving all delegates, wherever they sat, a spatially accurate experience.”
d&b Soundscape enables two different, related forms of sound processing to produce defined enhancements to the listening environment. Based on the d&b DS100 signal engine, Soundscape manifests two distinct software components—En-Scene, a sound object positioning tool, and En-Space, an acoustic room emulation tool that provides room reverberation signatures.
The event’s system was comprised of point-source loudspeakers, mainly Y10P with some E12-D. An inner ‘out firing ring’ for speech-based presentation from the central stage area used all Y10Ps. Meanwhile, there was also an ‘in-firing’ system of E12-D and Y10P on the video perimeter. Each screen was approximately four meters wide and positioned north, south, east, and west of an oval shape with the loudspeakers evenly spaced between them.
The systems worked together so that as the inner ring fired outwards, it supported the Soundscape environment. So if, for example, a sound object originated in the north position, then as that sound transited the room and the delegates, a loudspeaker from the inner ring would pick up that role, supporting the sound object across the 120-foot throw.
Local musicians were used at some points, wandering around the audience, so their movements were “audibly choreographed” using En-Scene so all delegates had a geographical experience of the performers as the performers moved through the room. En-Space was then used to create a reverberant concert hall experience to the environment.
Koan noted, “We used QLab to program the sound moves. The video spit out Time Code, QLab took that and output OSC into the DS100 then to the matrix, so the whole process became automatic. That functionality was already built into QLab. What it meant was you just needed to drag the path of the audio through the listening area, and QLab writes the OSC code to make that happen. This was not a simple ‘snap to a new position’ audio; this was real-world transiting through space from one location to another, and without any need for complex programming to achieve that effect.”
d&b audiotechnik. • www.dbaudio.com