Martin Audio has released a significant upgrade to Display, the software brain of the MLA Series. Display is the numerical optimization process designed to eliminate lengthy trial-and-error tuning sessions, so that an MLA Series system achieves the required audience coverage straight out of the box.
Based on a highly accurate acoustic model of array behavior, it gives a precise prediction of the direct sound produced over the audience as well as areas where sound is to be minimized. It takes the guesswork out of array design, deployment, and control, generating ready-to-use DSP filter configurations and comprehensive rigging information, including mechanical load safety analysis.
The patented optimization process evaluates thousands of potential array configurations against multiple target functions such as frequency response, flatness, and sound leakage into non-audience areas. With the computer working behind the scenes, the engineer retains full artistic control over the system’s balance or “house curve”—Display simply replicates what the engineer hears at the mix position to the entire audience.
This Display software upgrade represents the biggest of its kind so far, and the key improvements and added functionality will benefit both new and regular users. A significant amount of in-the-field research and feedback was carried out across a series of tours and festivals to validate this latest upgrade.
Increased Accuracy: Acoustic data has been re-measured using more advanced techniques and re-calibrated to deliver more accurate prediction and optimization. In addition, the hard avoid feature is optimized more effectively for varying distances from the array, while the introduction of a leakage threshold limits the effort of reducing output below a certain level.
Improved Sonic Consistency: Elemental EQ is now full-band for all MLA systems, making them sound better, and MLA family arrays exhibit close to flat average audience response, making input EQ between them even more complementary.
Faster Splay Optimizations: On average, splay optimization takes 30 percent less time than with Display 2.1, and a new Express Setup tool is also available when simple day-to-day arrays and default Display settings are applicable.
Enhanced Usability: The software now generates printable rigging reports for all types of system, adds more room for the audience and goal value graphs in EQ tab, easier access to the most recent files, a new option for reference-level or average audience level static plot, and auto-scale frequency response plot in SPL View.
Richer Graphics: A new Matlab graphics system is used throughout, with plots and axes looking richer and smooth.
Martin Audio’s research engineer Ambrose Thompson was responsible for leading the software development. “MLA is the clear leader in providing superior coverage for every member of the audience while ensuring sound spillage is controlled,” he said. “Now with this enhanced functionality, it’s even more accurate, faster, and easier to use, and makes MLA sound better than ever before. We’ve seen others enter the market with array prediction software and we just wanted to ensure that nothing comes close to the exactness of Display.”
To take into account the input EQ changes required, Display 2.2 is being released in tandem with VU-NET 2.0 control and monitoring software. This allows for the input EQ to be adapted automatically to the new output from Display 2.2, and VU-NET 2.0. Furthermore, it will also support CDD-LIVE!, enabling a cohesive architecture of control and monitoring for Martin Audio systems.
The Display 2.2 upgrade is automatically sent to existing MLA owners, while VU-NET 2.0 can be downloaded from Martin Audio’s software webpage.