CP Sound's JBL Solution Spices Up Pier One's Afro-Beats Mix

Having just equipped the luxurious 5* Blue Waters Resort & Spa in Antigua with HARMAN’s JBL Professional loudspeakers and Crown amps, Colin Pattenden (of CP Sound) kept up the Afro-Caribbean vibe back in London at the pioneering Pier One Club, situated in the more down-home location of Canning Town’s backstreets.

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Once again he found the solution in JBL, but this time the requirement was the polar opposite to that in Antigua in terms of sonic power. Pattenden had worked with venue owner William Lule for nearly two decades, and when the latter wanted to relocate his pioneering venue from Dalston—to an out of the way location which would not be as problematic in terms of noise as the heavy populated Kingsland Road—he found the site in a remote area of East London.

With a trained ear and a discerning clientele for the heady Afro Beats mix CP Sound’s owner was already proposing a JBL subwoofer “which would move the cone 3.5 inches”.

“But,” he continued, “in delivering such heavy bass we also needed to ensure there was sufficient top”.

With its 450 capacity the club is deceptively large. The main ‘Arena 1’ looks small in comparison with the annexe (dubbed ‘Arena 2’) but the piéce de rèsistance is the heavily used ‘Garden’ area at the rear, awash with decking and faux grass, designed and fitted by carpenter, Titah Kasujja (who is also responsible for the upholstery and much more besides). Even the enclosures for the subwoofers have been elegantly designed in decking, lined with rigid Baltic Birch plywood as specified by Colin Pattenden, making this a really practical as well aesthetic solution.

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So what has the installer specified? Arena 1 is equipped with four flown JBL AM5215/95 tops from the AE series, with a further two providing fills and pair of muscular ASB7128 (2 x 18”) subwoofers. At the DJ booth a further JBL AM5215 has been provided for reference monitoring.

“The JBL sound is right up there, and we advise our DJs to play with caution!” - William Lule, Venue Owner

Arena 2 has two similarly encased twin 18” ASB7128 subs and four further JBL AM5215/95. In the Garden, a pair of JBL VTX F18S single 18” sub touring enclosures, with the same massive 3.5” linear excursion capability, show the same attention to sonic quality. Tastefully clad with decking and blending into the environment, they are complemented by four AE AM5212/64 offering the required dispersion pattern. During the summer, this area is where the portable DJ box will plug in to the audio system to provide some alfresco afro-beats.

All systems are run tri-amped and are powered by a combination of Crown XTi 1002, XTi 4002 and XTi 6002, with the latter running the subs and the XTi 4002 and XTi 1002 running the mid/tops and DJ monitor (while in the Garden, the the XTi 4002 runs the subwoofers in bridged mode). The amplifiers are housed in custom racks designed by Jamie Pattenden—Colin’s son, and a vital cog in the family business.

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The system is processed and optimised by another Harman component, the dbx DriveRack® PA2.

Explaining the design rationale, Jamie Pattenden said, “We needed a bit less punch out in the Garden, hence the 12”, which is ideal. But the most important factor was to have the same horn driver throughout, for consistency in the top end. Getting it right for them was paramount as William wanted a very specific sound.”

It is the perfect set-up for Pier One’s pool of four house DJs, as confirmed by William Lule who was first introduced to JBL’s powerful combo in a listening test at the HQ of Sound Technology Ltd, HARMAN Professional Solutions distributor in the UK and Ireland.

“The JBL sound is right up there, and we advise our DJs to play with caution,” he warns. “We knew what we were looking for … and Colin delivered.”

JBL, Crown and BSS products are distributed in the UK and Ireland, as part of the HARMAN Professional portfolio, by Sound Technology Ltd. For further information please call 01462 480000 or visit https://www.soundtech.co.uk


  • Pier One
  • Pier One

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