In September 2016, the Open Air festival “Rock im Bergbad” celebrated a successful premiere in Bückeburg in Lower Saxony, Germany. In the unique backdrop of the local mountain swimming pool, four high-profile acts performed in front of the landscape panorama of Harrl and the Weser mountains. Auditiv GmbH, based in Kassel, set up an Alcons LR18 pro-ribbon line array as technical service provider for the event.
The line-up of the festival consisted of the former Genesis frontman Ray Wilson, The Lords, the glamrock icons of Sweety Glitter & The Sweethearts and the local hardrock hero Jabba’s Cortex.
For the sound of the approximately 35 by 55 meters large audience area, a setup of nine Alcons LR18s per side was used in combination with two Alcons RR12s as near-fills. The bass line was formed by six Alcons cardioid BC543 (3x 18″ each). Seven Sentinel S10’s powered and controlled the system.
The compact LR18 3-way line source system combines the best possible sound quality with a very high sound pressure level and long throw. By applying Alcons’ multi-patented pro-ribbon driver technology for mid / high frequency frequencies, an ultra-fast impulse response with up to 90% less distortion is achieved.
The LR18 offers a completely intuitive linear reproduction with excellent speech intelligibility and uncompressed, absolutely faithful sound balance at any sound pressure level.
Timo Osterberg was on-site as the responsible sound engineer, took the PA into operation and at the same time supervised the FoH of Jabba’s Cortex and Sweety Glitter. As a solid FoH man from Sweety Glitter, Osterberg always has the same desk and therefore can compare different sound reinforcement systems very well.
Headroom, Headroom, Headroom!
The special qualities of the Alcons system therefore occurred directly during the sound check: “What can I say? Headroom, headroom, headroom – that’s what you immediately notice. The stereo image was fantastic, stereo effects extremely precise to locate. The low-mids of the LR18 are so convincing that I do not know when and if I’ve ever heard such a detail. The bass was very clean and tight. Even in very low frequencies, I could not detect any conspicuous resonances. ”
In addition to the direct sound characteristics, Osterberg was also impressed with the system’s throw and, last but not least, the remarkable ratio of size to sound of the array.
“Interestingly, despite increasing distance to the system (over 40 meters), there is hardly any sound loss. Sure, it gets a little quieter, but the sound is still there”, the sound technician continues.
“Pressure and resolution are not a problem with the LR18 at all. Where many systems only carry pressure, but not a nice sound, the LR18 remains extremely honest and faithful even at high levels.”
Because of these characteristics, the prescribed volume limitation to 100dB was not a problem. The Alcons typical undistorted sound reproduction allowed to play on the average at 98 dB and still be really loud.
Timo Osterberg also enthused at “Rock im Bergbad”: “One experiences an absolutely fatigue-free listening pleasure – despite Rock’n’Roll and high levels. That I really only know from Alcons! ”
The artists themselves were no less impressed: “The sound at Rock am Bergbad was simply first class,” confirms Stefan Jahnke, management of Sweety Glitter. “The purest madness what the sound system has confronted us with! The band and I are very, very grateful for this experience. ”
Mathias G. Walter, associate of the organizer NORDHARRL-Concerts, is also more than convinced by what he heard in Bückeburg: “We have seen many concerts, including concerts of world stars in large halls or stadiums. Not infrequently the sound quality was painful – in the truest sense of the word: shrieking highs and completely overdriven basses, fragments of music wagging over the terrain. “
“All the more enthusiastic are we about the ultra-clean and smooth, “in-the-face” sound quality that we were able to experience at our concert “Rock im Bergbad” in Bückeburg. The guests were offered a velvety sound carpet over the entire area, with all frequency ranges presented consistently, despite the difficult terrain situation (ascending terrain, tree population) and the food and drink stands.
The entire concert was an absolute listening pleasure due to the high-end technology of Alcons Audio, which even enthusiastically inspired HiFi freaks! We are already looking forward to our next event – preferably with the same technology and the same team. ”