Clubs, Fitness centers, Restaurants, Churches, Office buildings and many other businesses rely on a specific kind of sound system. These systems called "distributed audio systems." Other names are used to refer to these systems as well, including “Constant Power Systems” and “70-Volt Systems.”
Distributed audio systems can be as small or large as you need them to be and the experts at 22nd Avenue can help you determine exactly what you need.
Distributed audio systems are always designed to the custom needs of the individual. In order to determine what equipment will be necessary to create a system, you must first determine the requirements of the installation. Is the system being used only to project someone’s voice throughout a quiet building, or will you need a more powerful system that can page and provide background music at a noisy bar?
For example quiet office buildings and recreation centers generally require soft background music, with the ability to page. Whereas nightclubs, performance venues and loud restaurants need the ability to turn up the volume, creating a foreground system. In a nutshell a background system provides low volume levels and a foreground system has the ability to provide louder volumes.
But you can also have two types of systems in the same installation. Health clubs commonly require loud foreground music in the treadmill area, quiet ambient music in the yoga room and perhaps even promotional material looping in the reception area. They also need the ability to page members and trainers throughout the gym. This is an example of having the need for a combination of the two types of systems.
When it comes to speakers you typically have two style types, a surface mount and a ceiling mount. Surface-Mount speakers usually offer better sound quality for music and are easier to install. Ceiling-Mount speakers are hidden away inside of ceilings and walls and offer a better choice for visually non-invasive, aesthetically-minded customers. Of course it's important to consider the structural limitations of a project when designing a distributed audio system. Different construction materials such as drop ceilings, concrete walls and high rafters will affect your speaker options, mounting options and the sonic characteristics of the space.
Once the proper speakers are chosen, a "distributed amplifier" will be needed. Depending on the number of speakers in use, and the overall power requirements of those speakers, multiple amplifiers or a multi-channel amplifier may be necessary. If you want to have different audio playing in different zones, like the fitness club described earlier, you’re going to need an amplifier with multiple zone controls.
Next you must consider what sound sources will be needed. These sound sources may include microphones, a CD player, an MP3 player, radio, satellite radio, the audio output from a DVD player, cassette players, etc. More often than not, an installation will require mixing more than one of these sound sources. This is why a mixer is required. The team at 22nd Avenue will go over your options and provide the best layout for your space and function.
Additional possibilities to consider are options such as remotely positioned volume controls. This way a yoga instructor can turn down the volume and a Jazzercise instructor can crank it up. There is equipment available that gives you the option of installing a wall-mounted volume control that also features a microphone input and a button to select the proper audio for the room. There are many different components available to customize a system that could give your business a creative edge.
When it comes to commercial audio, the options are limitless. We can even interface your telephone or fire alarm into the distributed audio system. Game day in the bar? No problem!
If you're planning on installing a system, let the consultants at 22nd Avenue Entertainment Logistics give you a hand in the design, procurement and deployment. We've been designing creative options for boardrooms to campuses for over 30 years... and always are staying up on the latest tech to ensure your system lasts a lifetime.