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  #1  
Old 02-20-2010, 10:01 PM
VisageSound VisageSound is offline
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Ministry of Sound replaces "Berthas" with ASX



Mighty subwoofers underpin six custom club stacks

When the Ministry of Sound London commissioned a bespoke Martin Audio club stack two years ago it was just one step away from standardising on the brand throughout.

Standing in the way were the old ‘Bertha’ sub enclosures, whose heritage dates right back to Richard Long’s epochal system at New York’s legendary Paradise Garage in the late ‘70s.

Although the subs had been loaded with Martin Audio 18in drivers during that last upgrade, the end game — according to Martin Audio R&D director, Jason Baird — was to provide a complete active low-end enclosure.

Meanwhile the Ministry’s Technical Manager Alex Barrand was aware of development work taking place at Martin Audio HQ on a prototype — largely to provide low-end extension for Prodigy front of house engineer Jon Burton — but his interest really went into overdrive when he learnt that an active product would be commercially available in the marketplace.

Jason Baird recalls, “We started the system upgrade with the custom AS118 bass and Wavefront W8C into the club two years ago when discussions about the ASX were under wraps. Once we were able to demonstrate it we took it down to the club for a demo.”

Alex Barrand had first heard the new ASX sub in the Martin Audio factory and thought it sounded “incredible”.

Down at the club he remembers, “One unit comfortably outperformed the existing system at the audition. We ensured the crossovers were aligned properly and coupled with the 18’s in the AS118’s.”

However, he wanted the subs to be able to tick over and instead proposed two ASX subs for each of the six stacks, coupled with a custom flared horn. The flare met the MoS management brief that the design should retain the physical presence of the old stacks.

The MoS technician set about specifying an enclosure that would couple and at the same time deliver a visual impact. However, there were also some acoustic benefits to this approach — as both he and Jason Baird were quick to recognise.

“The flare not only enables more output to be generated but also better horizontal directivity. We needed to dissipate the hotspots and this did it. By angling the stacks we could get more broadband coverage.”

And with the integral amplifiers, signal and control cables exposed at the rear he also commissioned and fitted a special rear box to conceal it from clubbers, who are already threatening to use the mighty ground-stacked flared enclosures as a dance platform.

Thus 12 x ASX subs, in six stacks, now drive the frequency range down to 30Hz — all connected to the new Martin Audio Control Manager software.

Each ASX is plugged into a hub which interfaces with a laptop, and the Control Manager application allows control and monitoring of all ASX’s individually, noting the temperature they are running at and how hard the system is being driven — in real time.

Reviewing the new set-up just two weeks in, Alex Barrand reports that the sound is crystal clear and the crowds have been going wild. “I am delighted to have been in a position to carry out such an impressive upgrade to this heritage system.”

And the DJ’s agree. Louie Vega, who appeared with Jocelyn Brown recently, was particularly complimentary about the new Martin Audio club stacks. "Ministry of Sound's new sound system, is one of the rare few systems left that bring the spirit of Richard Long's work from the Paradise Garage with a digital edge.

“Since the new sound system went in I've enjoyed every minute deejaying there at our Soul Heaven Events and look forward to many more musical journeys. Congratulations to the Ministry of Sound (and Alex Barrand) for once again creating a new club sound blueprint.”

http://www.martin-audio.com/pressdetail.asp?pressID=276
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  #2  
Old 02-21-2010, 12:01 AM
clubman5 clubman5 is offline
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Visage, are these the same ASX subs advertised on the Martin site, that use single 21" woofer per cabinet, each voice coil having an impedance of LESS than 1 ohm?

MIGHTY impressive specs and ratings, I guess it is time to take trip to London to hear the system.
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Old 02-21-2010, 01:25 AM
VisageSound VisageSound is offline
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Yes it is.

“One unit comfortably outperformed the existing system at the audition"

Well, seems like a crazy statement. So they are saying, 1 x Martin ASX = 6 Berthas.
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Old 02-21-2010, 01:34 AM
VisageSound VisageSound is offline
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  #5  
Old 02-21-2010, 01:41 AM
clubman5 clubman5 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VisageSound
Yes it is.

“One unit comfortably outperformed the existing system at the audition"

Well, seems like a crazy statement. So they are saying, 1 x Martin ASX = 6 Berthas.
Well, using 21" woofers with VC of less than 1 ohm, that is MASSIVE CURRENT draw, and voltage swing. I would tend to agree they KICK seriously hard.

I have been interested in the current crop of 21" woofers myself, might have to take me a trip to hear these.

BTW, I have ALWAYS LOVED VERY LOW IMPEDANCE LOADS for sub bass myself.
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  #6  
Old 02-21-2010, 01:43 AM
VisageSound VisageSound is offline
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They are a ridiculous sub. They require a 16A socket for each enclosure. Add that up to having 16 subs for a large concert, 256A, You def need a large generator for just sub.
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  #7  
Old 02-21-2010, 01:47 AM
clubman5 clubman5 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VisageSound
They are a ridiculous sub. They require a 16A socket for each enclosure. Add that up to having 16 subs for a large concert, 256A, You def need a large generator for just sub.
I do not need a generator, each of MY sub bass amps has it's own dedicated 30 amp breaker and receptacle. My building has a BIG 800 amp 3 phase service.

Besides, even with running 16 of these, it is still pulse current, not a steady state draw like lighting or air conditioning, or motors, when they are running. Therefore, yes, you need the amperage, but it is actually easier on the buildings AC service than the numbers imply.
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  #8  
Old 02-21-2010, 05:17 AM
ianc ianc is offline
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Funny enough I was actually there on that very night a few weeks ago. I left quiet impressed with the sound.
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  #9  
Old 02-21-2010, 05:37 AM
clubman5 clubman5 is offline
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The technology advances.

A 21in woofer, powered by 2500 watts of Class D power, in a hybrid horn SHOULD work in an awesome manner.

And I might tend to imagine these subs working REALLY well with todays music, as well.
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  #10  
Old 02-21-2010, 05:49 AM
Leeee Leeee is offline
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I was in there a few months back not sure if said upgrades had been carried out but it was definately a great sound. It was a lot more comfortable than the system sounded in recent years.

Great room a dark 'box' room all black nice booth no bar and an amazing system.

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  #11  
Old 02-21-2010, 05:53 AM
Richi Richi is offline
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What sensitivity are these drivers then? Seems they are hiding that info on the specs page. Stating how much wattage is driving them without stating sensitivity is rather vague.
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  #12  
Old 02-21-2010, 06:21 AM
clubman5 clubman5 is offline
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Originally Posted by Richi
What sensitivity are these drivers then? Seems they are hiding that info on the specs page. Stating how much wattage is driving them without stating sensitivity is rather vague.
That may be, but, I also think that with 16 of these at 2500 watts each, total 40,000 watts, sensitivity can be lower than older high efficiency designs, yet still put out considerably HIGHER output. And also being that these drivers have such low impedance VC, the sound should be very GARGANTUAN, IMO! I run low impedance loads, and it is a whole different world down there.

On yet another note, being that this cabinet is a hybrid horn, it might be cleaner sounding than what it replaces. THIS can be good, in terms of todays digital music.

One thing is for sure, I want to go hear this system!
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  #13  
Old 02-21-2010, 09:29 AM
Disko Ole Disko Ole is offline
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I was there when Louie Vega played at Soul Heaven a couple of weeks back. It was my first time ever visiting MoS so I can't really compare with how things used to be, but all I know is that this system is WILD!

It was so loud and raw, but still never muddy, always crystal clear. Even with the floor packed it played so loud and clear that I had to use my fingers as improvised hearing protection when my ears actually started to really hurt because of the high level sound that was pumping out of the stacks. Even though the system played ridiculously loud at times I didn't have any problems the following day. There was no ringing in my ears after I left the club. Still, next time I'm going to MoS I'll be sure to use some hearing protection. Becoming deaf is no desired dream of mine.
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Old 02-21-2010, 10:00 AM
clubman5 clubman5 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Disko Ole


I was there when Louie Vega played at Soul Heaven a couple of weeks back. It was my first time ever visiting MoS so I can't really compare with how things used to be, but all I know is that this system is WILD!

It was so loud and raw, Still, next time I'm going to MoS I'll be sure to use some hearing protection. Becoming deaf is no desired dream of mine.
This is not what I consider compliments!

Over here, in the states, we use the word RAW to describe things we didn't like audiowise. Such as the mids were raw sounding. NOT GOOD, necessarily.

It was so SMOOTH sounding, yet so clear and real, and I think it may have been louder than it actually sounded would be the words i might be looking to see people saying!

DISKO, were you able to talk to people easily on the dance floor and hear one another without struggling to do so?


Stating you will wear ear protection next time you go, because going deaf is no desired dream of yours is DEFINITELY not complimentary.

OTOH, I may believe what you say, though!
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Old 02-21-2010, 10:03 AM
clubman5 clubman5 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Disko Ole
Even with the floor packed it played so loud and clear that I had to use my fingers as improvised hearing protection when my ears actually started to really hurt because of the high level sound that was pumping out of the stacks. Even though the system played ridiculously loud at times I didn't have any problems the following day.
This is NOT good!

IT SHOULD NOT HURT!

YOU SHOULD NOT HAVE TO STICK YOUR FINGERS IN YOUR EARS!
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Old 02-21-2010, 10:48 AM
Disko Ole Disko Ole is offline
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By raw I meant brutal and pumping, but yet very clear and pleasant sounding. I tend to use the word "raw" in a similar fashion someone uses the word "bad" to describe something good. Most likely it's because English isn't my native language, which makes it very easy to adapt words to other meanings that what it is originally.

Overall I liked the sound, but as I mentioned there was a point when my ear started to hurt. For most of the time it was all good, but during the final hours it almost seem like the technician lost track of what was going on on the floor, because it was way to loud. At this point it was almost impossible to have a conversation, but earlier it hadn't been an issue at all.

I think it's wise to carry hearing protection when you're going clubbing, you never know how things will turn out. Some people like to push the limits far beyond what's healthy and in those cases it's good to know that you could just reach your pockets for some hearing protection.
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Old 02-21-2010, 10:54 AM
clubman5 clubman5 is offline
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Tell you this, and I can't actually say for sure, without hearing the room, but 16 of those ASX subs each having 2500 watts of power, and seeing the full range somehow seems a bit out of balance.

IF 1 ASX = 6 Berthas, why did they NEED sixteen, and do they really have enough full range to keep up?

I know for sure, reading a club goers comment that IT HURT, isn't putting any smiles on my face.
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Old 02-21-2010, 10:58 AM
clubman5 clubman5 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Disko Ole
Overall I liked the sound, but as I mentioned there was a point when my ear started to hurt. For most of the time it was all good, but during the final hours it almost seem like the technician lost track of what was going on on the floor, because it was way to loud. At this point it was almost impossible to have a conversation, but earlier it hadn't been an issue at all.

Unfortunately, what you describe, is exactly the kind of sound I do not like.
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Old 02-21-2010, 11:38 AM
Leeee Leeee is offline
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Not to put forward an argument here i saw a pal of mine play there - Behrouz - and the sound was not harsh at all ....... i honestly actually remember saying to my mate how nice it was and how we could talk over the music. BUT i cannot say honestly how much the system was being pushed.

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Old 02-21-2010, 11:56 AM
clubman5 clubman5 is offline
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I believe you Leee, and I read and form opinion based on what I read as well as what I hear for myself.

It is possible that some DJ,s push the system beyond what it should be, others don't. I believe this.

BUT, I also wonder WHY they needed 16 ASX subs IF one ASX = 6 berthas? You see, I DO know how much bass the Levan horn is capable of producing, and IF one ASX = SIX Berthas, then that IS the output of 96 BERTHAS!

In terms of getting the job done, one could argue they have built the BIGGEST system around, as far as nightclubs go.

Another one could be skeptical, and wonder how such a system balances out correctly.

Mind you, I can't speak of the subjective sound quality the MoS system has or doesn't, but, when people say they had to stick their fingers in their ears, this is NOT good!

Then, from a technical point, you are aware that a room can be overloaded as well? The same way some of the super car sound systems are just TOO MUCH PRESSURE for such a small space, too! And cars with way too much sound for the small space don't please me, they irritate me.

Now, I first read this thread, and felt, WOW, I want to go hear this system. And now, I am reading comments that may make me think otherwise.

Regardless of what you say, or the system is, IT should not hurt, nor be allowed to be driven to these levels if the system is capable of producing excessively painful levels of output.
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Old 02-21-2010, 02:24 PM
VisageSound VisageSound is offline
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I feel that its just marketing mumbo jumbo.
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Old 02-21-2010, 02:35 PM
clubman5 clubman5 is offline
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Originally Posted by VisageSound
I feel that its just marketing mumbo jumbo.
And I can agree with this too!

Does the ASX sound good? I see no reason why if properly set up and used, it shouldn't.

Advertising 1 ASX as having the output of SIX Berthas! Well, quite a heady statement.

Again, and as one other pointed out, all these claims, without a measured sensitivity rating published in said specs! Hmm?

40,000 watts of SUB BASS! Just seems like so much. Visage, how big is the main room, this system is in? In square footage please. If you can.
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Old 02-21-2010, 04:07 PM
Leeee Leeee is offline
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I'd hazard a guess about 1500 sq ft approx?

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Old 02-21-2010, 06:45 PM
Richi Richi is offline
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The original MOS system in the 90's had more than enough sub bass for that room. The technical specs in those days were never discussed, it was shrouded in myth. The only marketing was the actual output of the entire system which was regarded as a benchmark. It wasn't until they started replacing the original GSA system with Martin that they decided it was time to discuss specs in public.

When Fabric put in there body sonic dance floor, the MOS had lost their edge in the marketing war where bass was concerned. It seems fitting as the entire system now becomes a bespoke Martin job, fitted with their new ASX product that they say it trumps 6 Bertha's, well it seems they are trying very hard to sell something! Quick, everyone to MOS we have more bass than anyone else.

The end of the day, rolling out wattage is meaningless and is just marketing speak. If it only takes 20 watts for the driver to reach it's full acoustic output anything else if just a sales pitch. It's like the early days all over again where each event would advertise their rig as a 60,000 Watt, monster. Now where's my 8000mph BWM parked!

You may have to get over their quick Scott, as Oakmayne a development company are threatening the future of the club,
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Old 02-21-2010, 09:59 PM
clubman5 clubman5 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richi
The original MOS system in the 90's had more than enough sub bass for that room. The technical specs in those days were never discussed, it was shrouded in myth. The only marketing was the actual output of the entire system which was regarded as a benchmark. It wasn't until they started replacing the original GSA system with Martin that they decided it was time to discuss specs in public.

When Fabric put in there body sonic dance floor, the MOS had lost their edge in the marketing war where bass was concerned. It seems fitting as the entire system now becomes a bespoke Martin job, fitted with their new ASX product that they say it trumps 6 Bertha's, well it seems they are trying very hard to sell something! Quick, everyone to MOS we have more bass than anyone else.

The end of the day, rolling out wattage is meaningless and is just marketing speak. If it only takes 20 watts for the driver to reach it's full acoustic output anything else if just a sales pitch. It's like the early days all over again where each event would advertise their rig as a 60,000 Watt, monster. Now where's my 8000mph BWM parked!

You may have to get over their quick Scott, as Oakmayne a development company are threatening the future of the club,
Sir your 8000mph BMW is having it's "FLUX CAPACITOR" removed, cleaned, repaired, then re-installed. Should be ready for you early NEXT week. We are still waiting for some parts to be delivered.

OH man you guys got the NASTY HOUSING developers over there too!

Bunch of S_um_ags, they all are! In any country, any race, anywhere, all the same. GREEDY!

I still want to go over, and hear this system, for myself. Does it REALLY have MORE, and BETTER bass?
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