One of the world’s oldest universities, Ruprecht-Karls University in Heidelberg, Germany, celebrated its 625th anniversary during 2011, an event that was preceded by a programme of renovation and refurbishment over a one-and-a-half-year period. Fohhn has supplied a range of loudspeaker systems, including Focus line source speakers with Beam Steering technology for a series of installations at the university.

The project has included Fohhn loudspeaker system installations in the university’s Neue Aula and in two lecture theatres. In each case, systems have been chosen for their ability to deliver balanced coverage and excellent levels of speech intelligibility, as well as for their ability to integrate into the architectural surroundings of the historic building.

A major refurbishment of the university’s Neue Aula has combined tradition with new architectural design elements and state-of-the art media technology. The hall is used for teaching and special events such as concerts and ceremonies, therefore requiring excellent reproduction of both speech and music. Challenging acoustics, and a requirement for AV technology to appear unobtrusive, resulted in the choice of LFI-220 line array systems with Fohhn Beam Steering technology. These have been mounted to the left and right of the front wall. The speakers’ beam characteristics have been set to directly target the audience and avoid reflections from the back-lit ceiling panels and walls. For additional low frequency boost, four Fohhn AS-20 subwoofers have been added to the system. Two Linea AL-150 line source speakers have also been installed as a delay line, providing additional coverage of the balcony area. Fohhn D-2.750 amplifiers are used to power both these and the subwoofers. The amplifiers’ integrated DSP technology can be remoted easily using Fohhn Net.

In lecture theatre 13, a general-purpose 400-seater lecture theatre remarkable for its brightly coloured ceiling panels, two Linea Focus LFI-220 systems and an XS-30 active subwoofer have been installed. The line arrays have been wall-mounted at the front of the room, either side of a projection screen. Using the loudspeakers’ Beam Steering capabilities, an asymmetrical beam setting has been selected to provide direct and even coverage from front to back in the reverberant room with tiered seating. This has enabled lower volume levels at the front and higher levels at the back, allowing everyone to hear clearly. With the speakers positioned behind a microphone, this beam setting has also enabled potential feedback issues to be avoided.

In a second smaller lecture theatre, two Linea LX-150 loudspeakers have been mounted on side walls towards the front of the room, positioned to achieve optimum coverage. Renowned for their speech reproduction qualities, the LX-150 systems are powered by a D-2.750 DSP amplifier.

We congratulate our Fohhn partner Sentio on this successful installation!

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