Nestled in the center of scenic Bend, Oregon, with a beautiful view of the Cascade Mountains—complete with a “Sundowner Hour” centered around sunset every day—is the Crux Fermentation Project, a brewery and tasting room built inside an old auto-transmission plant. Crux has recently added a new outdoor live concert space with a selection of food carts and an indoor fine dining area with a patio.
AudioVisual Bend AV Designer/Project Manager Tony Sprando, who installed a new audio network, explains that Crux was juggling two different audio systems, neither of them adequate. One was for mics and live acts and the other was designed for residential use. AV Bend replaced both old systems with a modern commercial-grade audio network with four zones. Outdoors, there’s a live venue space with a deck for larger bands. Indoors, the tasting room offers a louder and more celebratory musical environment, in contrast to the fine dining area and the entryway, where the music is kept quieter. The fourth zone is a corner of the dining area that is reserved for smaller one- or two-person musical acts.
“The network allows audio broadcasting in any direction,” observes Sprando. “If we have a little one-person act inside, we can broadcast that outside, and if we have a band outside playing the concert space, we can broadcast that indoors as well. We installed an all-weather patch panel on the outdoor deck; bands just flip up the cover, plug in, and they’re ready to go.” The system outputs to Lab.gruppen amplifiers and weather-rated, pole-mounted QSC speakers for the outdoor venue. JBL CRV speakers, mounted horizontally, cover the patio, while additional CRVs in vertical arrays cover most of the indoor area. JBL Control-series pendant speakers handle the tasting room and entryway. “They have digital signage with menus and more that’s all tied into this,” Sprando adds.
One major reason Sprando and the AV Bend team favor Symetrix is easy programming and user-friendly controls. “User error goes way down,” Spando explains, “so we greatly reduce service calls. And the customers love the Symetrix ARC-2e wall panel; with only three buttons. The Jupiter 8 also supports Symetrix ARC-WEB for wireless remote control via smartphones and tablets, and Crux’s Pandora background music is now integrated smoothly with the mic and line inputs for easy control from one app.”
Sprando notes that both customer and contractor benefit from the ability to service the system remotely. “The Jupiter 8 rack is never touched once we’re done,” he details. “It’s mounted, you lock the door, and there’s no need to go in for day-to-day use. If we have to service these systems, we remote in and make the changes. We can go in and not only turn levels up and down but work with EQ and compression to really dial in our sound for each zone.
“We’ve been using Symetrix processors for six years or more,” Sprando concludes. “The day of the line/mic mixer with knobs in a rack is really over.”
Product At Work
Symetrix ARC-2e is a single-gang, menu-driven remote control for Symetrix DSPs with 24 menus each with up to 16 items used to control multiple basic functions or complex logic-based events.