As a manufacturer of professional audio systems, we know how important it is that our products work effectively and reliably – anywhere and at any time. For this reason, ease of installation is factored into our development process from the outset.
The more complex a project, the greater the demands placed on an audio system. What’s more, each subsequent new development and new technology brings an even greater level of expectation. Excellent sound quality and high levels of speech intelligibility are taken as read. However, effective integration of an audio system is also crucial: acoustically and visually, functionally and digitally.
Before a loudspeaker system can be installed, there are the inevitable “Where” and “How” questions: Where is the system integration taking place? In an airport terminal, a cathedral, a conference hall, an auditorium, an opera house, or perhaps a sports stadium? And how will the actual systems be integrated? As part of an audio network, a multimedia concept, or will they form part of a voice alarm system?
To help answer these and the many other questions that will inevitably arise, our experts are in direct contact with planners, architects and installers by request – even before the project has begun. After all, we are ultimately interested in achieving the best possible results for our customers.
Successful integration involves a lot more than simply mounting and connecting up the systems. Each room has very different and often very challenging acoustic conditions, whether from long reverb times, unwanted reflections and acoustic shadows from walls, columns, balustrades and other architectural elements, or from raised areas that make even sound coverage difficult to achieve.
Depending on the venue and the application, there might be additional requirements regarding sound transmission and speech reproduction: For example, adhering to noise level restrictions, avoiding feedback from microphones, or creating flexible settings (presets) for varying live sound and playback applications.
Thanks to a well thought out acoustic design and special, in-house developed components, our loudspeaker systems are more than able to cope with these and other challenges. The systems boast a range of impressive features including, among other things, precise, even beam dispersion. Newer loudspeaker models have cardioid functionality that can reduce backward sound emissions to a minimum.
Playing a central role in both acoustic and visual integration are our loudspeaker models equipped with integrated, state-of-the-art Fohhn Beam Steering Technology. This in-house developed, constantly optimized process enables digital real-time control and optimal adjustment of the loudspeaker beam to suit a particular room condition. Thanks to their high performance capacity, Beam Steering systems are also able to cover enormous distances. This means, for example, that just two loudspeakers, or loudspeaker arrays, mounted in the stage area, can provide centralized, directional sound coverage throughout an entire room. As a result, visually obtrusive supporting loudspeakers become unnecessary, thus reducing the actual number of systems required.
Architects are not only affected by acoustic conditions, they also have to consider how loudspeaker systems can be aesthetically integrated. Historic protection, a striking room design or a particular stage set – all of these can influence which system should be installed, where it should be mounted, how it looks and whether or not it should even be seen.
The perfect room or stage integration is, more often than not, synonymous with invisibility. This requirement can easily be fulfilled by our loudspeakers with their elegant, inconspicuous design: Slender line source systems can be mounted flat against a wall, or in a corner, compact Beam Steering modules can be masked with sound permeable material, while small nearfield speakers or subwoofers can be hidden behind specially constructed wall panels or grilles. All without any reduction in sound quality.
Should our loudspeakers need to be visible, various customization options are available to meet visual specifications or cater for individual taste – for example using special RAL colours for housings and brackets, or photorealistic decorative surfaces.
We always regard our loudspeakers, amplifiers and other audio devices as component parts of a complete system. Based on this concept, we can guarantee a range of different applications due to the integrated technologies within our products. For example, our systems can easily be integrated into state-of-the-art media control systems, innovative 3D and surround sound applications or conferencing equipment. Offering the highest degree of flexibility, they can be used in variety of ways, either with one another, or with audio devices from other manufacturers.
An important building block in this process is Fohhn Audio DSP technology: Equipped with two high performance digital signal processors (DSP), our active loudspeaker systems and amplifiers benefit from high levels of operating reliability and best possible sound quality, as well as from six professional audio processing tools (e.g. delay, compressor/limiter etc.), which enable optimal adjustment to suit the acoustic conditions of the room.
A second more important aspect is our intelligent networking and control technology: All installed Fohhn active loudspeakers and amplifiers can be connected to a control network – the Fohhn-Net. This enables users to monitor and control up to 254 audio devices from a central location. The functionality of all connected devices can be controlled in real time using Fohhn Audio Soft control software.
Many of today’s installation projects already incorporate digital networks. In the near future, it is anticipated that audio systems, such as EN 54-24 certified voice alarm systems in airports, stadia or shopping centres, will function exclusively via integrated digital networks, in which all audio and control signals are transmitted using CAT-5 or fibre optic cables. The latter have already become a prerequisite for projects with stringent fire safety requirements, or for components that have to be networked over long distances.
Our aim, therefore, is to be compatible with all future audio networks. Some of our products are already equipped with built-in interfaces for the Optocore and Dante networks. At the same time, all our active loudspeakers, amplifiers and controllers are being equipped as standard with digital AES/EBU inputs. Since AES/EBU is a standard format, appropriate interfaces already exist for all digital networks, so connecting our audio devices will not be a problem.
A further installation possibility is provided by our in-house developed, fully digital audio network and active loudspeaker concept – AIREA. In addition to excellent sound quality, the system also offers a significant reduction in both installation time and cost due to its simple CAT-5/CAT-7 cabling and limited rack space requirements.
Fohhn Audio AG
Hohes Gestade 3-8
Fon +49 (0)7022 93323-0
Fax +49 (0)7022 93324-0