The Venue

The New Zealand Parliament Debating Chamber in Wellington recently underwent a major audio upgrade including a state of the art Acoustic Technologies sound system that will satisfy the buildings requirements for at least the next decade…

Glenn Leembruggen (ICE) was engaged early on in the project’s development to develop an acoustic solution that would provide stunning coverage and sonic quality throughout the chamber. Glenn highlighted intelligibility, coverage and most importantly, fidelity as the major performance criteria – with a focus on long-term system relevance and sustainability. In addition to the demanding performance criteria, there were many design constraints to contend with, such as weight restrictions, suspension methods, heritage and architectural constraints and a limited time frame.

Acoustic Technologies was approached early in the process and selected as the manufacturer for the project based on our R&D ability, manufacturing quality and attention to detail.

The main floor of the debating chamber is covered by six custom engineered multi beam-steered array speakers suspended in a rectangular grid from the ceiling. Each array is a cylindrical package no more than 350mm (D) x 1750mm (H). Although physically identical on the outside, there are actually three different models in use. Each of the six arrays uses multiple 5″, 3″ and 2″ transducers to steer various segments of the spectrum to the appropriate areas in the chamber. HF information is provided by a number of compression driver/horn combinations in the array. A coaxial two-way speaker for down fill completes the picture. Each array is driven by 22 to 23 individual amplifier channels each with its own DSP channel.

As well as the beam-steered systems, Acoustic Technologies also provided various other sound reinforcement products in order to provide clear, coherent sound to members of the public gallery and press gallery.

The Equipment:

4 x AT-NZT1 Custom Composite Steerable Line Array System – Type 1
Chamber Floor
2 x AT-NZT2 Custom Composite Steerable Line Array System – Type 2
Chamber Floor
15 x AT-ALA01TC 3” 2-Way Speaker System Surface Mount – Inc. Bracket
Gallery – Cornice
32 x AT-NZFM1 3” 2-Way Speaker System Flush Mount
Gallery – Balustrade
15 x AT-NZPG1 3” Full Range Speaker System – Custom Housing
Press Gallery
12 x AT-NZFT1 3” Full Range Speaker System – Custom Housing
Gallery – Floor