Under the Bridge choose SFL for confidence and clarity.

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Located underneath London’s Stamford Bridge Stadium, Under the Bridge (UTB) is a purpose built, plug and play, multifunctional space with a 550 persons capacity that caters to both public and private events. The venue boasts state-of-the-art sound and lighting - perfect for gigs, press calls, showcases, fashion shoots, live broadcasts, after-parties, comedy nights, corporate events and much more.

After successfully working with SFL on several events, UTB approached SFL to demonstrate and design a new sound system. SFL’s Andy Felix, Sales Engineer, worked with Liam Hoy, Technical Manager at UTB, to establish the most appropriate solution.

Following a site visit and several discussions, the overriding issues were identified. According to Hoy, “The in-house system was certainly starting to show its age and six 18-inch dual driver subs located under the stage resulted in artists frequently struggling with the clarity of their on-stage monitoring. It was just a case of having sound absolutely everywhere. It didn’t sound bad, but it didn’t have any real clarity.”

Hoy adds, “As a venue linked to a world famous brand, the reality was that unfortunately at times the standard of quality fell short of the understandably high expectations.”

Under the Bridge chose d&b as their preferred loudspeaker manufacturer. “The brand has a world class reputation for quality and reliability and is consequently very rider friendly,” explains Hoy. “The solution ensures an optimal and professional experience for both artists and audience.”

The install combines V-Series line arrays and point sources, as well as Y-Series point sources as fills. Monitoring is provided by several M4s. B6-SUBs and flown V-SUBs round out the performance of the system, while amplification is provided by 10D, 30D, and d&b’s new and extremely energy efficient 40D.

Due to a significant reduction in the number of speakers required, as well as d&b loudspeakers being noticeably smaller in size, the physical impact of the system is clear.

The install has brought real compactness and unprecedented neatness to the venue.Liam Hoy, Technical Manager, UTB

In addition, an overall design change has resulted in a much more open and clear view of the stage from the engineering pit. With additional subs on stage no longer needed there’s an instant increase in performance space. Now, the combination of flown and under stage subs results in increased coverage, and thanks to the subs’ cardioid design the onstage experience is now much quieter. 

The technological efficiency of the d&b amplifers has also enabled the venue to reduce its amplifier count from three 40u amp racks to half a rack only. Plus the d&b amplifiers use up to 90% less energy than conventional amplifiers thanks to their highly efficient ‘stand by’ mode.

The shutdown time and energy consumption has been significantly reduced, and the overall process has been hugely simplified. In this way, the d&b technology is really contributing to our ambitious sustainability goals here at UTB.Liam Hoy

Needless to say, the venue is thrilled to boast a world class audio solution, ensuring optimal trust and confidence, and providing unprecedented clarity as well as outstanding coverage to its varied audiences.

Having selected SFL on the basis of its reputation for valuing relationship and partnership, Under the Bridge has been able to enjoy the installation process throughout. “We consistently trusted in SFL, never had a reason to worry or panic and always felt assured of a positive outcome. SFL showed real attentiveness in listening to the brief and attention to detail in delivering to budget. 

From the outset, [SFL] brought an ‘outside the box’ and ‘extra mile’ approach. When quoting for the design, the difference was that SFL really took our points on board. For example, ArrayCalc is not just a square on the screen, it’s a very accurate model of our venue. This really built our confidence in SFL as a supplier. It’s been a great collaboration.Liam Hoy

With their problem-solving and explorative approach the SFL team have delivered confidence all round, including adapting to onsite Covid guidelines. “The renewal of a PA system in any music venue can be both a daunting and exciting experience,” reflects Hoy. “I’d like to thank SFL group for doing everything in their power to make it the latter. From the design phase to completion, they have been fantastic in communication and delivery of what we wanted to achieve here at UTB. We are proud to have the system on our tech rider and are already enjoying the benefits of that great ‘d&b’ sound.”

As for the what UTB’s varied and discerning audiences can expect…

From a non-technical standpoint, with our first gig post-installation, the bass was so on point it was incredible. The audience and the artists were beyond thrilled and happy. It was a moment of ‘this just works!’Alan Tenenbaum, Creative Manager at UTB

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