In response to the growing population and infrastructure for which it is responsible, the JVFD recently completed construction on a second firehouse. Pro Sound Associates (Guilderland, New York) and Live Sound, Inc. (Troy, New York) worked with electrical contractor Tech Electric (Waterford, New York) and electrical engineers M/E Engineering (Schenectady, New York) to design and install a forward-thinking, robust, sound reinforcement system centered on an Ashly ne4250.70pe combination four-channel amplifier and digital signal processor.
“Of course this was a public bid, and we had to stay very competitive,” said Dominick Campana, owner of Pro Sound Associates. “The two-rack space Ashly ne4250.70pe offered us all the functionality we needed at a very reasonable price”. said The control room is very small and there was no place for a wall rack. We had to fit all of our equipment in existing cabinetry.”
Moreover, we had to cover four zones, each with different types of loudspeakers and different acoustics. The Ashly ne4250.70pe has plenty of power to drive the system, and its DSP capabilities allowed us to effectively deal with the different acoustics.”
Two channels of amplification feed three customer-specified Bogen loudspeakers each in the apparatus bay, which is where the trucks are parked and ambient noise is often substantial. The third channel of amplification feeds four more Bogen loudspeakers in the gear room and flex bay, where ambient noise is less of a problem. Finally, the fourth channel of amplification feeds an extended string of eight contractor ceiling speakers in the radio, fitness and training rooms, and the office and corridors.
Inputs to a Shure SCM-262 mixer with priority ducking include a Tascam CD player with iPod input, a feed from the fire radio dispatch, and a desktop paging microphone. In every room, except the apparatus bay, simple wall attenuators provide adequate volume control. Because the apparatus bay loudspeakers were tapped at their highest setting and receiving 250W per string, a wall attenuator wasn’t a good choice. Instead, Campana installed an Ashly WR-1, which provides separate DSP-based control of the apparatus bay volumes via two rotary dials.
“We have a long history working with Ashly and have always found their products to be rock solid,” said Campana. “Moreover, Ashly’s Protea™ DSP software is one of – if not the – easiest to program. They’ve worked out the networking so that all we have to do is plug it and our computer into the network, scan for devices, and it comes right up. You’re right into it. It’s great to have that kind of consistently stable performance to rely on.”