Newark on Trent, UK – July 2018... Rising UK based production company ASYS Events recently celebrated an extraordinary two years of growth by fielding a substantial TW AUDiO VERA36 sound reinforcement system for the seventh annual Newark Festival.
Produced by the highly influential events promoter Liz Hobbs Group (LHG), the Newark Festival is one of the UK’s most successful outdoor classic pop shows. Its success this year marked the culmination of a remarkable journey for ASYS Events, described by Managing Director Steve Jones as “lifting the company from one level to another with the help of TW AUDiO”.
Taking place between June 15th and 17th, the 2018 Newark Festival attracted thousands of eager attendees from across the Nottinghamshire region with a line-up of classic stars from the 1980s. Making its own debut, the TW AUDiO VERA36 front of house system had high expectations to meet, as Liz Hobbs Group weighed its performance against that of previous PA choices.
“We are quite critical when it comes to sound systems because of course we are a PA company in our own right,” says LHG Operations Director, Rupert Doogan-Hobbs. “But we’re really happy. We’ve used TW AUDiO before on some smaller DJ gigs and we were very happy with those results. So we asked Steve from ASYS Events to cover Newark Festival, which for us is a much bigger and more important job, requiring a full system.”
For Steve Jones, the request represented a vote of confidence in both the rapid development of his own company and the investment he made in TW AUDiO just two years before.
“Up until we bought that system two years ago we were doing smaller gigs. We had some line array but we didn’t use that much of it,” he explains. “So I was looking to invest in a new PA and from the beginning, TW AUDiO were brilliant to work with. We were invited out to Germany to preview the system, meet the team and get an overall feel for the company. The guys at TW kindly agreed to send out a demo system for a few upcoming events so we could get some hands-on, real-world experience with the boxes outside the demo room. I couldn’t fault it. The rigging, sound quality and the support received was superb.”
Since then the company has expanded dramatically. “The contacts that we’ve made as a result of buying the TW AUDiO system and the support that we’ve received from the company itself have really taken us from one level to another. It’s meant that we can bid on bigger jobs and we can handle much larger projects quite comfortably. The significant improvement over our previous equipment also enables us to do much larger jobs with a more compact solution. The native cardioid S33 sub reduces the need for additional boxes to complete a cardioid sub array and the VERA36 boxes come packed with substantial audio output, in a box that weighs less than 40kg. We don’t need to send out a truck’s worth of gear when actually a 3.5-tonne van will do it. That has made a significant difference in reducing our costs – savings which we can then forward on to clients.”
ASYS has capitalised on its investment with a string of regional events around the UK. “Just over the last few weeks we’ve done the Spalding Beer & Music Festival with a flown system of six VERA36 per side over S33 subs, plus our TW AUDiO M10 boxes for front fill and out fill in a challenging, extremely reverberant environment. There was also Bourne Festival, an outdoor event with no option to fly a system. Instead we deployed a ground-stacked system using VERA36 over S33 combined with BSX subs. At both events, we also implemented a complete TW AUDiO stage package, including C12 and C15 wedges, and T24N over B30s for side fill.”
For Newark Festival, a larger solution was required to meet client expectations whilst overcoming the site’s unique challenges. “The site isn’t very wide but it requires significant throw, and we needed to provide a solution to match that of previous years. Delay towers were previously used but they were no longer an option,” Jones explains. In addition, the festival’s location in the heart of Newark on Trent meant that noise restrictions had to be strictly observed. “We were right next to the town centre,” he continues, “and there was rear offsite noise to consider as well because there are housing estates not too far from the back of the stage.”
The solution comprised left-right hangs of 12 per side VERA36 flown beneath two S33 subwoofers per side. “The S33s added some low end extension to the bottom end of the arrays – VERA36 already goes low but the S33s just gave the arrays a little bit extra,” says Jones. “For the groundstacked sub configuration we had six central BSX subwoofers, set up in two sets of three in cardioid format with two front facing and one rear facing. Moving wider from the centre, we then spaced four stacks, each comprising two S33 cabinets per side.”
Six VERA20 enclosures were stacked on top of the subs to provide front-fill, while elsewhere on the site, three VERA10 cabinets served as HF fills for the VIP sponsors area, where a further two S33 subs added low-end extension. The entire system was powered by Lab.gruppen PLM12K44 amplifiers with Lake LM 44 front of house control.
“With two hangs of VERA36, we achieved what had previously been done with a much larger system and it still sounded impressive, even at a distance,” says Jones. “The VERA36 gives incredible definition and clarity without sounding harsh even when running at high SPL. The low frequency response of the dual 10” drivers in each box produces a smooth, clear and powerful low-mid range. In the sub range, the S33/BSX sub array was incredibly punchy, yet defined and controlled with some of the best rear rejection we have heard.”
Most importantly, the client agrees: “After two days on the festival site we were absolutely thrilled with the coverage,” declares LHG’s Rupert Doogan-Hobbs. “It’s a nice system with very smooth audio and it’s exactly right for the crowd we wanted, so we’re very pleased.”
Fig. 2 (l. to r.): Simeon Ludwell (TW AUDiO UK), Augustine Edward (TW AUDiO ASIA), Tobias Wüstner, Mick Whelan (TW AUDiO USA)