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d&b Goes Ivy-league In Sydney

10 September 2008

As with the evolution of the shopping mall, there is a trend in the world of entertainment to concentrate a multitude of leisure activities within a single environment.

However, unlike the mall, the truly successful leisure complexes are
far removed from the homogenised retail blandness of these
mega malls. Roberto Cavalli the famous  Italian fashion
designer has his name on one soon to open in Dubai, while in
Australia the dynamic entrepreneur Justin Hemmes has already
opened ivy, as diverse a  concentration of hedonistic
indulgence as you could ever wish to encounter.

The recently completed phase one is no faint hearted dip of
the toe. Opening earlier this year it features six bars and
four restaurants, each with its own unique and  stylishly
rendered décor; a breathtaking introduction to Mr Hemmes'
ambitions for ivy. There's nothing cheap or vulgar about the
way ivy has been created, yet this is not  some ivory tower
for the elite; users won't be fleeced for coming. Quality
experience is reflected throughout the facility; even the
lowly background music systems are of  the highest order, as
John Collyer from principal sound contractor Avsound

"ivy is a project that raises the bar when it comes to
entertainment in Sydney. We wanted to do the same with the
audio system. For us d&b audiotechnik is hi-fi in a pro
situation; what I mean by that is it has the quality of a
great home hi-fi box, but you can push out pro level SPLs."
But is that what is really needed in bar and restaurant
environments? "We've installed an eight way stereo
background music system; emstream's PC based MP3 system,
plus a number of DJ inputs. DJs play here most nights and
we’ve installed a number of locations they can play from.
Yes, low SPLs are used for lunches during the week, but high
SPLs are desirable for Friday and Saturday nights."
Avsound were awarded the contract by Merivale, Hemmes'
business vehicle for ivy, having first submitted a design
and install proposal pitched against two other  competitors.
"The brief was outlined by a consultant; the systems break
down into ten main zones with ten sub zones, run through BSS
Londons with an AMX venue control  system." Readers will not
be surprised to learn there are a number of wide screen
displays throughout the facility run using AMX Endeleo media
distribution system. "The  EVAC system is patched directly
into the PA as the client did not want two sets of
loudspeakers; we need to get 93 dB for EVAC purposes, the
background noise floor can be  high, but the d&b systems
achieve this without any trouble. The acoustic environment
is highly variable; rooms range from a marble walled, glass
bar with hard floor and  just a three metre ceiling height,
to what I think is the best sounding room in the complex,
which has a four metre ceiling, velvet draped walls and
plush carpeting." Both  rooms use d&b Ci80 loudspeakers as
their main element, the marble room has custom Ci subwoofers
to match the décor, while the Velvet room takes the standard
Ci  subwoofer. Approximately one hundred and fifty d&b E0
loudspeakers and a number of E12 subwoofers are distributed
throughout the other bars and restaurants all driven  either
by d&b's E-PAC or D12 amplifiers with system control via the
R1 Remote control software.

"It has been a remarkable project for us," concluded
Collyer, "and the support from d&b's Australian distributor
National Audio Systems has been excellent throughout. The
project is now fifty percent complete; the remainder will
bring the total to nineteen bars and eight restaurants that
are due to open before the end of the year."





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