When Elliot Patterson from Evolve Install embarked on his third fit-out for the fast expanding Kricket restaurant chain at the iconic BBC Television Centre in White City, he had the luxury of working in a new building with an industrial theme. This gave him the perfect opportunity to suspend a series of down facing JBL pendant loudspeakers in the three open-plan zones and direct the sound away from the offices upstairs.
Owned by Will Bowlby and Rik Campbell, Kricket Television Centre is also the Group’s largest restaurant to date, offering 100 covers inside and 40 outside. It features an open kitchen, booth and banquet seating, and a garden terrace with views of the studios.
Like the other two venues, in Soho and Brixton, Patterson turned to the HARMAN Pro audio catalogue for his solutions, sourcing the materials from their UK and Ireland distributors, Sound Technology Ltd.
“It’s always nice to be involved with a new building as there’s more freedom with what you can do with the speakers,” he said. “The building was just a wide open space when we first saw it, but theme is very industrial, with overhead ducting and cable trays.”
The installer knew instinctively that the JBL Control 67P/T would provide the best solution, incorporating a large enclosure and high-power 6.5” transducer for extended bass response, and 120° dispersion for even coverage pattern. “These speakers have a nice LF response and so deliver a really warm sound without the need for additional subs. Fed by the right music you get the benefits of the full frequency range.
”And that music, delivered by Music Concierge, has been carefully customer profiled but is essentially gentle R&B and soul during the day, with a more rhythmic R&B, with a little house music into the evening as the volume level ramps up.
The 3-zone venue is divided into Bar (where two JBL Control 67 P/T are located) and the main restaurant (with a further four Control 67 P/T), while in the bench seating down the side of the open kitchen sees a pair of the slightly smaller Control 65 P/T. installed “These are particularly effective for those sitting alongside the dining area, providing a nice blanket of sound,” says Elliot Patterson. The music extends to the toilets where it is played out through JBL 8124 4” ceiling speakers.
The different volume level presets during the trading pattern are stored in a dbx ZonePRO 1260m DSP, which Evolve Install has also specified in the other Kricket sites. “One of the key advantages is that it has a timer and status setting so you can programme different day and night presets, ramping up from Thursday to Saturday,” Patterson explains. “This can be over-ridden via a dbx ZC8 wall remote behind the bar.”
The entire system is powered by a Crown CDi DriveCore 4|300 4-channel amplifier, and while the dbx ZonePro handles the main routing the CDi 4|300 takes care of all processing and limiting.
“Running 4 x 300W, this amplifier can handle a 100V line system such as this, and at the same time it has a sleep feature so it’s also energy efficient,” states Patterson. “The advantage of 100V line is it requires less cabling, and we can run more speakers off a single channel.” And with this system there is ample headroom.
While main electrical contractors BES, with whom Evolve Install have worked regularly in the past, handled all the cable work, the sound specialists have provided expandability in the shape of an input plate by main reception, for clients to plug in their own system, as well as an output feed, enabling the operators to put in a temporary outside system for those dining and drinking on the piazza during the summer.
Summing up the operation, Kricket head of marketing, Ali Earl-Gray, said, “The Television Centre had been a major project for the company—it is an iconic building and we are excited to be here. Along with the surrounding areas, it has been redeveloped in what we hope will be a new centre of gravity for West London.”
And she described the background atmosphere generated by the JBL sound system at the venue as “perfect.”
JBL, Crown and dbx components all form part of the HARMAN portfolio distributed by Sound Technology Ltd.