The Buzz: 20 Years Ago in Sound & Video Contractor

Bring on the Noise
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The Buzz: 20 Years Ago in Sound & Video Contractor

Nov 1, 2005 12:00 PM, By Mark Johnson

Bring on the Noise

The November 1985 issue sported a new table of contents. James Gundlach started things off with “High-SPL Systems” and provided a few cautionary words regarding amplifier power, weight, and cooling, and loudspeaker positioning and placement in the design and installation of high-SPL systems. Since no standard was available as a point of reference, Gundlach defined high-SPL as 95dB at the listener's ears.

Cal Perkins picked up where he left off in the “Designing a High-Level Sound System” series started the month prior by taking a look at the components involved and the final system design. The article covered the low-frequency section (with array considerations), the midrange section, and the high-frequency section (with information on compression drivers, H-F horns, and high-frequency driver protection).

Richard C. Cabot contributed once again with the cover story, “Limiters, Compressors, and Expanders.” Cabot provided the ins and outs (pun intended) on the technologies and some of the features of dynamic signal processing gear.

What are noise gates and expanders all about and how can they be best implemented? Mike Morgan, technical consultant to US Audio in 1985, provided the information in “Noise Gates and Expanders in Fixed Installations.”

David G. Meyer told of “The Sound of Money” and profiled installations in Trump's Castle (way pre-Apprentice) and Tropicana hotels in Atlantic City, N.J. Meyer, part of the audio systems division of Pierce Phelps in Philadelphia, reviewed the process involved in preparing and submitting the bid as well as installing the systems. Key individuals with Pierce Phelps at that time were Doug Wilkens (who frequently contributed a column, “From the Field” for Sound & Video Contractor) and Charles Moore. Moore and Wilkens teamed up again to launch Inter-M Americas in 2002, where Moore was VP and general manager and Wilkens was director of sales and marketing. Moore retired in 2004 and Wilkens took over as VP/general manager.

In addition to his monthly column, “Reinforced Audio,” David Scheirman provided a look at the state-of-the-art performance system in Nakano Sun Plaza in Tokyo. The concert hall with its left-center-right system, capable of 130dB, was designed to handle any kind of musical event and took five years to complete.

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On the business end of the business, William C. Cheney and Penny Sirna Weigand contributed a section dedicated to GSA contracts. “Contracting to the Government,” by Cheney, outlined some of the procedures and details of the bid process and discussed some of the GSA contract provisions. In “The Solicitation,” Weigand highlighted what was considered perhaps the most important and most complicated part of the GSA contract.

P. John Brunstetter contributed “Your Behavioral Style and Productivity” and presented Analytical, Taskmaster, Participator, Energizer, and Flexible as five general types of personal behavior and how these styles could interact with one another.

Joel C. Schwartz, who was director of the Electronic Industry Show Corporation, senior VP of Electronics Representative Association, and president of LCA Sales, provided a guest editorial: “A Trade Show that Listens.” Schwartz recalled that the Electronic Distribution Show and Conference (EDS) listened and responded to complaints and comments from exhibitors and decided to cancel its plans to hold a future show (1987) in Chicago.

In ads, Panasonic Industrial Company promoted the versatility of its commercial sound products from its economical models to its deluxe versions. Kulka-Smith offered “Swiss Perfection” in the form of Neutrik audio connectors. Cetec Vega introduced the Vega PRO wireless system, which featured its DYNEX II audio processor.

In business news, Aiphone celebrated its 15th year of U.S. operations, and in FYI Altec Service Corporation and University Sound Products was looking ahead to 1986 when it would celebrate its 50th anniversary (along with the 45th anniversary of Altec Lansing Corporation).

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