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I have spent much of the last few weeks checking a football stadium and its many and various sound systems. We have also been upgrading some areas where building work has taken place. I have found one or two pieces of test equipment invaluable for this work.

The GoldLine ZM2 is basically an impedance meter but its high output, interrupted, tone will drive a 100v loudspeaker line. It has been brilliant for helping us locate circuit breaks in loudspeaker chains. Provided the installation is in a basic chain configuration you just follow the tone along the chain until you come to a loudspeaker with no output. It is not quite so easy with a star configuration but it still helps you locate the likely area for the circuit break.

Whilst equalising areas of the stadium sound I have been using the NTI MR-PRO signal generator. Having previously used the Minirator for this job I find the addition of a Mute button on the MR-PRO very beneficial. By using the Mute button I could communicate with the person at the analyser position (stadium lawnmowers allowing) before restoring the pink noise to its original level. The MR-PRO was also able to replay WAV. files of the stadium announcers voice allowing us to check the overall sound quality for naturalness.

Thankfully everything is now signed off. It only remains for the football team to do their bit on the pitch!

We have recently completed the design and installation of acoustics for the UK demonstration facility of a professional loudspeaker manufacturer.

Experience has shown me that although a near anechoic room would provide some of the best listening detail, demonstrators and their customers are sceptical of listening in an environment which is clearly not "real world".

Designing the demo room acoustics to give reasonable amounts of diffusion and absorption was our goal and we were very pleased when the measured results came extremely close to our predictions.

Evaluation over a period of time should confirm the ultimate success of our acoustic design but it certainly worked for me; I bought the client's loudspeaker we were using to evaluate the room!