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Yamaha Flies the Flag at La Rodia

Nov, 2011

Having lacked a multi-purpose live entertainment venue for many years, the patience of the 176,000 residents of Besançon, eastern France, was rewarded this year with the opening of La Rodia. Featuring two concert halls, a lobby bar, two studios and information / multimedia resources, a Yamaha digital audio system ensures that all of the new facility’s users - whether local amateurs or international stars - get a universally high standard of sound.

Covering 2000m2, the project was initiated several years ago by the mayor of Besançon. Designed by architect Claude Denu, the audio system was designed by ATES Thise, based in the eastern suburbs of the town.

La Rodia’s management team was already an ATES client, having worked with the company on a previous project. "Despite the initial discussions about La Rodia’s audio system taking place three years ago, we advised them from the beginning to have an all-digital system,” says Pascal Lacroix of IZO, the ATES subsidiary which supplied the system. “We explained that, even if it seemed a little premature then, once the project was completed ‘le tout digital' would be the rule!"

For the larger, 900-capacity hall, ATES selected a Yamaha PM5D at front of house and an M7CL48-ES for monitors. Six pairs of AD8HR head amp/AD convertors, an NAI48-ES Ethersound interface and SB168-ES stage boxes make for a very flexible and high quality system

The smaller hall has a capacity of 320 and features an M7CL48-ES console for both FOH and monitors, with further SB168-ES stage boxes. Both halls feature Nexo PS15 monitors, while the studios each feature an 02R96VCM mixing console.

Managed by an Auvitran AVM500-ES controller, an Ethersound star topology network connects all of the spaces in La Rodia. There are multiple connection points in each room, making for a tremendously flexible venue. It allows the consoles and stage boxes to be easily moved to a range of different places, meaning many different types of event can be accommodated.

"The technicians here soon saw how easy it is to move the equipment, plug it into the nearest Ethersound socket and then use Auvitran ES Monitor to reconfigure the system,” says Pascal.

Regarding the choice of Yamaha equipment he says, “At IZO we have been dealing with Yamaha equipment since the very first SPX effects processor and the company’s digital consoles since the Programmable Mixer 01 back in 1993. The PM5D and M7CL are regarded as absolutely essential, so many rental companies and venues have them and virtually all sound technicians know them. They were the only choice.”

"The PM5D is very well known among the sound engineers who are coming to La Rodia," confirms Manu Comby, the venue’s sound director. "The same is true of the M7CL.”

La Rodia has already proved to be a very popular venue, international ‘name’ acts rubbing shoulders with French icons and local productions, but all enjoying the same high quality sound. Alongside co-productions with the local Lycée Pasteur art school and Conservatoire, artists-in-residence and a plan to hold a range of educational events, La Rodia is already one of the flagship facilities in eastern France.


Products M7CL-48ES , SB168-ES

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