August 25, 2015 · Scottsdale, Ariz. – Nestled among Scottsdale’s world class restaurants, luxurious spas and magnificent desert backdrop is what some are calling ‘the best venue in Arizona”. Livewire, a 14,000 square foot club which has already allured internationally touring artists like DJ Steve Aoki, The English Beat and Blues Traveler, opened in January to the delight of both locals and destination tourists seeking the ultimate, premium live sound experience.
The two story facility, which has a capacity of 1,100 persons, features classic, old school design elements combined with modern technology touches: these include a massive LED display, intelligent lighting systems and a world class audio system consisting of more than 200 speakers driven by Powersoft. Livewire worked with Los Angeles-based Fyxx Entertainment, who specified the entire audio system, including (4) Powersoft X8 amplifiers and (1) Ottocanali 8K4 8-channel amplifier.
Audio Oasis in the Desert
When Fyxx Entertainment’s Adrian De Pamphiis met with Livewire, the objective was clear: “They wanted to have the best sound, lighting and video system in Arizona,” he says. “Even though Scottsdale was a major international tourist destination, it was often looked over by international touring acts. They wanted to change that by creating a top shelf entertainment space.”
Fyxx Entertainment was tasked with delivering an audio system that would cater to a broad range of live entertainment: from prominent, internationally touring DJs, to established and emerging rock acts and even comedy acts. The venue needed to provide premium A/V experience from all points of its interior: from the main floor, to the second story mezzanine, to other interior elements including bars, hallways and VIP lounges. In the main hall, Fyxx installed two primary loudspeaker arrays set in a stereo configuration to cover ‘live instrument’ scenarios, while providing a 4.0 surround addition for DJ performances.
During the planning stages, Fyxx was careful to specify only high-end components within the entire audio chain. “This venue is going to be here for many, many years and I was intent on having them invest in top notch gear so we would not have to change anything in near future,” De Pamphiis says. “We have great mics coming in at FOH, which are coming into a nice Avid console. Then the signal is going directly to the processors before finally hitting the Powersoft amplifiers. We also specified high gauge cables between the amplifiers and the speakers to maintain the integrity of the signal.”
X8: Standing Out from the Crowd
De Pamphiis says there was no second-guessing when it came to driving the speakers: “We chose Powersoft because it is the best amplifier on the market,” he says. The Fyxx Entertainment team also chose the X8 because they wanted to network the entire audio system with Dante™. “We are in Los Angeles, and this venue is in Arizona: so by integrated a networked solution, we can simply log in remotely and still maintain full control over the performance of the amplifiers. This way, we never get a phone call that something is wrong or not working. And if we do get a call, we can simply go online and see what is going on.”
One X8 is being used to drive the entire FOH system, including six dual 21-inch cone subwoofers, a high output mid/high range driver and other loudspeakers. Another X8 is being used to drive the monitoring system, consisting of 18 small-format, two-way stage monitors, and a separate high output DJ monitoring system comprising of 15” cone drivers — also being driven by the X8s. The club maintains a fourth X8 that it is not in use, to ensure redundancy in the unlikely event of a system failure.
Many other environments within Livewire — for example, restrooms, bar areas, hallways, VIP rooms and other non-performance areas — feature 6.5” ceiling loudspeakers scattered throughout the ceiling of the facility. There are approximately 40 of these, all of which are being driven by a single Powersoft Ottocanali 8K4 8-channel amplifier.
‘Jaw Dropping’ Performance
“Everyone who comes into this venue and listens to the sound system gets that same look: their eyes get big, their face grows long and their jaw drops,” explains De Pamphiis. “All the FOH engineers we have spoken to comment on how transparent the system is, and how they have to apply very little EQ to get a great mix.” DJ Steve Aoki — who routinely performs at the best clubs in the world from Singapore, to Ibiza, to Las Vegas, was among the first to experience the sound system from a performer’s perspective last February. “He told me it was one of the best sound systems he has ever heard in the world,” recalls De Pamphiis. “Personally, I believe it is the best venue in Arizona.”
De Pamphiis, whose firm took delivery on of some of the first X8s in North America, says he is eager to specify Powersoft in his next integration: “There is no other amplifier on the market that has eight channels, full Dante™ compatibility and which can put out this kind of power. I always tell my clients to go high end, and I always pitch Powersoft first. My mantra doing installations is ‘Hit it and quit it’ — I hate doing maintenance, and with Powersoft I don’t have to worry about it — it just sounds great and does what it is supposed to do!”
For more information on Livewire, please visit http://livewireaz.com.