(Digidesign | Posted 2007-06-15)

Since its introduction in the Spring of 2005, the Digidesign® VENUE live sound environment has proven to be one of the most versatile and in-demand digital consoles available. Today, VENUE systems can be found on international tours, or in TV and radio broadcast environments, as well as fixed installations for theatre and houses of worship. This spring, VENUE system sales hit an all-time high of 500 worldwide—reinforcing its position as the ultimate audio solution for countless pro audio applications.

“The 500 mark is an amazing milestone for us to reach in such a short span of time,” says Robert Scovill, Market Manager for Digidesign’s Live Sound Products. “It’s just so rewarding to see mixers, systems integrators and even PA companies genuinely excited by what VENUE brings to their efforts.”

The growing roster of artists and events currently touring with VENUE systems encompass numerous genres. VENUE is the console of choice for mixers of Ozzfest, Beck, Radiohead, Paul McCartney, U2, Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen, Black Eyed Peas, Dave Mathews Band, Barbara Streisand, Shakira, Dixie Chicks, Pearl Jam, Justin Timberlake and Gnarls Barkley to name just a few. “I have heard and mixed a lot of consoles in the last 30 years. This platform [VENUE] brings decades of audio evolution into one platform. I would argue that this is the future of Live Audio Production” claims veteran mixer for Ozzfest, Greg Price.

“Put it this way, I’m not using any other console,” raves Gnarls Barkley’s FOH engineer, Garry Brown, “It is, in my opinion, the best sounding digital console out there today. My mixes are better than they have ever been, and I have become a more creative mixer! The onboard dynamics are excellent and the software is laid out so well, it makes it very simple to use. In short, the console has been a dream to us.”

Events around the globe such as the Bonaroo Music Festival and Switzerland’s Montreux Jazz Festival, as well as iconic UK rock festivals such as Glastonbury and Isle of Wight, are all employing VENUE for their multi-artist line-ups. Reports cite reliability, versatility, and sound quality among the key reasons for its selection. “VENUE has a reputation for its intuitiveness and has become the preferred brand on any tour rider,” says Montreux’s senior sound supervisor, Bernard Natier. “And touring sound engineers are united in their praise. Everyone seems comfortable using the console and delighted with the system’s numerous features”

Mega Houses of Worship such as Colorado’s Heritage Christian Center and Georgia’s North Point Community Church (considered one of the most influential churches in America). have also adopted VENUE systems. In fact, by 2008, North Point will have a total of eight VENUE systems in its multiple locations. “The features are great and our pastor remarked on the improved sound quality,” explained David Stagl, North Point’s Audio Director. “After mixing on the console for over a year, it has been hard for me to mix on anything else. The console cleaned up our PA and gave it a lot of clarity back.”

Heritage Christian Church’s FOH engineer Curtis Sobolik agreed. “In over 13 years of audio production, I’ve yet to experience such a user-friendly, reliable, multi-functional product as VENUE. We rely heavily on our gear to perform without flaw every day of the week and this product is flawless. Before we purchased the VENUE, we had three different consoles, and the VENUE replaced both FOH and monitor worlds as well as all the outboard gear.”

In theatre applications VENUE’s versatility has made it a must-have desk. “In the current console market, the Digidesign VENUE stands out by a mile,” says Gareth Owen, sound designer for Orbital Sound, which handles many of the live theater shows in London. “The scene handling and recall parameters are way ahead of anything else out there. Combined with advanced trigger and MIDI functions, the D-Show® software makes programming a theatre show ridiculously easy.”

Digidesign and VENUE are creating new and exciting workflows and have experienced unprecedented growth and acceptance by live sound engineers of every discipline.

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