Posted in news on December 14, 2016 1:23 pm EST

Discreet Loudspeaker System Chosen for Vast Thai Temple

Sound intelligibility is achieved while preserving a temple's serene atmosphere with L-Acoustics' Kara system.

Wat Tha Sung's main system comprises six clusters of eight Kara each in three zones, with each zone comprising two clusters, coupled with four SB18i. Four ARCS Focus are deployed as front stage fills. Image courtesy of L-Acoustics.











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TAGS: architectural design, audio, avl design, sound reinforcement,


By Church Designer Staff

Considered to be one of the most beautiful temples in Thailand, Wat Tha Sung or "The Glass Temple" -- so named because of its spectacular roof made from mirrors and crystals -- is situated in Thailand’s Uthai Thani province. The recent installation of a discreet L-Acoustics audio system in one of the temple complex’s newer halls has reportedly ensured that it sounds as good as the original temple looks.

The original Wat Tha Sung temple dates back to the Ayutthaya period, from 1351 to 1767. By the mid-1700s the temple was derelict, but in 1789 monk Luang Pho Yai restored it, with more buildings later added to the complex. It now has many pavilions with accommodation for meditation. One of the newer main halls, Sala 12 Rai, has recently undergone extensive renovation in preparation for being renamed 100th Birthday of Pra Rachapromyan Cathedral. The update includes the installation of an L-Acoustics loudspeaker system, comprising a combination of Kara variable curvature line arrays, ARCS Focus constant curvature line sources and coaxial X-Series cabinets.

Problem & solution

The 30-year-old hall needed a crisp, clear sounding system, to be primarily used for chanting, sermons and meditation teaching. It required even SPL coverage of +/- 3dB across its entire area; a challenge made more complicated because its structural design includes a large number of pillars located relatively close together.

Bangkok-based Vision One was introduced to the committee that runs Wat Tha Sung by one of the directors of Workpoint Entertainment Public Co. Limited, which owns the Siam Pic-Ganesh Center of Performing Arts, where Vision One had already successfully installed an L-Acoustics Kiva system.

“Mr. Alvin Koh, L-Acoustics applications engineer for Asia, was involved in the project from day one,” says Vision One’s Tanapat "Tony" Mongkolkosol. “He visited the site and discussed the requirements with the temple’s committee, including the project manager, Monk Mongkolwate, the senior advisor/architect Mr. Chumnumporn Chavananont ,and the interior designer. The support from L-Acoustics helped us to convince the committee that our solution would be the best one to solve the many challenges that the hall presented.”

The carefully designed placement of the loudspeakers ensured that Vision One was able to achieve its aim of delivering a constant SPL throughout the entire temple, with superb intelligibility. Software image courtesy of Soundvision.

These challenges included the central part of the hall being around 100m wide by 120m long, with a ceiling height of 23m -- equivalent to the area of a football pitch and the height of a five- or six-story house. And, while the new design for the hall removed several of the original pillars, 48 remained.

Aesthetic concerns

In addition to the acoustic challenges, the speaker system also had to be as discreet as possible, in order not to intrude upon the atmosphere of the temple.

Using Soundvision software, Mongkolkosol and his team produced over 20 system designs to ensure that they studied all of the potential solutions. The final design comprised 48 Kara, eight SB18i, 50 X12, four ARCS Focus and six X8, all powered by 30 LA4X amplifiers.  continued >>