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Meyer Sound MILO Raises the Bar and Rocks the House at Sziget
Pleasing 390,000 people is a difficult task. It is especially challenging when many of those people are musicians. At Budapest's 17th annual, five-day Sziget Festival, audio engineers not only kept 200 performances on 15 stages running smoothly but they kept headliners like Faith No More, Prodigy, Fatboy Slim, and Placebo more than happy.
"The Sziget system exceeded my expectations of what Meyer Sound speakers are capable of," said Ian Nelson, Placebo's sound engineer. "In fact, I found that I needed to do an almost unheard of act: turn the subs down!
"I've worked with most of the current speaker systems over the 2009 festival season," Nelson continued. "Mixing on MILO (line array loudspeakers) again cemented our decision to carry a Meyer system on our forthcoming autumn arena tour, again."
A critical component to making this high-stakes festival run smoothly is the self-powered sound systems from Meyer Sound. As Béla Dudás, the festival's technical director, explains: "Besides quality and reliability, the ease of installation and operation of Meyer Sound equipment are very important considerations when planning for a festival. Setup and teardown needs to be swift, and with Meyer's self-powered technology and QuickFly rigging, that is a given."
The large number of Meyer Sound loudspeakers needed for the festival exceeded the inventory of Budapest's Expander 2000 Ltd., the festival's main sound provider. As in years past, Expander turned to UK-based Capital Sound, a long time partner and Meyer Sound dealer to supply MILO and MICA line array loudspeakers and 700-HP subwoofers.
"We really enjoy working with the crew at Sziget. The system design, installation, and tuning they do is amazing," said Paul Timmins, project manager at Capital Sound. "The new generation of system people is well educated and ambitious. The level of the festival crew is top-tier."
It's not just the crowds and the musicians who are difficult to satisfy. Sziget's audio technicians and engineers are demanding, to say the least. Technical excellence is a must, but so is performance over time. For several years running, Meyer Sound's European Technical Support team has collaborated with Sziget's audio group by providing technical training to technicians and engineers, on the design, and on the ground.
"The reason MILOs keep coming back year after year to the main stage—and other stages as well—is their wide acceptance in the audio industry and the consistent performance we have had every year in all kinds of conditions," says Pignon, chief of the sound crew for the main stage. "The clarity of the MILOs always amazes me, and all that with the exceptional power and consistent coverage."
"The low end we are getting from the 700-HP makes even the most particular engineer happy," adds Marci Mezei, system engineer of the main stage. "And the M3D delays carry the punch up to 150 meters away from the stage. That is quite an experience for the fans and for us as well!"
By Károly Molnár