Yamaha’s Westminster Presence Grows With State-Of-The-Art Central Hall Installation
Offering the largest conference and events space in central London, Central Hall Westminster (CHW) features a 2,400-capacity auditorium (the Great Hall) and a number of other rooms and spaces in the stunning Grade II-listed building, which together host over 700 corporate and (regularly televised) public events every year. It is also a vital resource for many important events which take place nearby. As well as hosting events and breakout sessions from the Palace of Westminster, CHW is regularly used as a media hub for major Parliamentary developments (including broadcast debates and interviews) and weddings at the Abbey.
Since 2001, over £16m has been invested in technology and restoration projects, which have brought the architecture of the building back to its original condition, but with a thoroughly 21st century infrastructure. Yamaha’s initial involvement at CHW was in 2011, with saw the installation of an LS9 digital mixing console in the Great Hall. The latest project - designed and installed by the venue’s production service partner White Light - is a comprehensive networked audio system, as well as a major update to the digital mixing facilities in the Great Hall.
“Yamaha’s Commercial Installation Solutions (CIS) range sits exactly in line with what we’re trying to do; pushing new products forward and embracing the latest technology. It was ideal for our requirements at Central Hall, particularly being integrated with Dante,” says White Light’s Lee Dennison.
The specified system is the same for each meeting room, featuring an MRX7-D with XMV4280-D four channel, Dante-enabled power amplifier. Loudspeakers in each space comprise pairs of surface-mount VXS5 with VXS10S subwoofers.
However, that was just the beginning. Four further spaces were quickly specified to feature MRX7-Ds, along with other Yamaha equipment, including an MTX5-D matrix processor and a pair of MSP5 studio monitors. At the same time, the Great Hall’s audio system was updated to include QL5 and QL1 digital mixers and two Rio1608-D i/o units, complete with MY4-DA4 output cards. With a Dante network installed throughout the CHW complex, White Light designed an expandable system which will make the venue a truly connected events space.
“In each room there are local inputs for microphones and laptop outputs, as well as two channels of radio microphones. In addition every space is equipped with visual playback facilities, which are linked to the audio system,” says Lee. “One of the many advantages of using the MRX7-D is that the system is designed for all of the rooms to be able to talk to one another, and for any Dante signal to be able to be passed to any Dante receiving module within the venue.”
In order to make the systems as straightforward to use as possible, control of the Yamaha equipment sits beneath a bespoke Crestron system. Designed by White Light, the system allows anyone using the spaces to adjust the sound, lighting and video projectors.
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