Lab.gruppen Announces Lake Controller V6.4 Software

June 12 2015, 03:00
15 years past since legendary sound engineer and audio innovator Bruce Jackson entered into a joint venture with Clair Brothers to design a digital loudspeaker controller for concert sound systems - already using a wireless tablet computer! - and 14 years past since he and Dave McGrath of Lake Technology launched the original Lake Contour system, the Lake Controller software continues to evolve, powering many of the critical sound reinforcement applications in touring all over the world.
Bruce Jackson, David McGrath, Brian Connolly
and Marcus Altman, the original creators of the
Lake digital processing solution for
sound reinforcement applications.
Dolby Laboratories bought Lake in 2004 and subsequently entered an agreement with Swedish manufacturer Lab.gruppen to further evolve the solution, running directly on the company’s Powered Loudspeaker Management (PLM) integrated amplifier and DSP solution. Later Dolby sold the technology to Lab.gruppen, discontinuing the dedicated hardware version - the Dolby Lake Processor - and the Swedish company continued to perfect the concept, further integrating its audio processing tools with real time audio measurements done with Rational Acoustics’ Smaart audio analysis software.

It might seem surprising that, in a relatively short time, Lake’s sophisticated technology basically became widely available in modern digital systems, and that much of its multilayering equalization techniques can currently be controlled with an iPad app. Still, Lake Controller’s algorithms (mostly designed by Brian Connolly) at the heart of PLM and LM Series range of solutions continue to offer outstanding processing capabilities and are extensively used by all major tours and music festivals around the world.

The new Lake Controller v6.4 software program, introduces a number of significant features to enable faster and more accurate optimization of complex, large-scale sound reinforcement systems. Specifically, according to Lab.gruppen Product Manager Martin Andersson, v6.4 adds a new dimension to preset and EQ handling with the introduction of Recallable EQ Overlays.
The Lake Controller software user interface didn’t change much since the original version released by Lake Technologies and Lab.gruppen expanded the solution to work with audio network technologies and expanded the tools, leveraging its powerful DSP capabilities.

“With this new feature, users can store and recall individual EQ overlays to modules and groups in Lake Controller,” Andersson explains. “Now any given speaker preset can consist of a single base preset which then can be augmented EQ overlay additions.  This allows fast modification of a preset to compensate for the number of boxes in an array or for variations in system throw distance for instance. It also opens up a whole new set of possibilities for system engineers to carry their favorite EQ on to an onsite system without any risk of damaging the original file, continues Andersson.”
Additionally, when an EQ Overlay is either stored or recalled to a Module or Group, the store/recall path also is stored in the actual Overlay for the module. This feature allows users to easily switch between different EQ Overlays with the same type of compensation. A speaker manufacturer or rental company can pre-define these paths for distribution inside the Lake LoadLibrary. Included in the Installer is the Lake LoadLibrary 3.6 that offers brand new FIR presets for some of the most common speakers in the industry, including JBL Vertec series “v6” presets.
The new software release also includes updated button placement for the MESA EQ section in order to make the workflow more intuitive. In addition, a number of other new features provide loudspeaker manufacturer partners an expanded toolbox for protecting and distributing their Lake-related presets and contents.
Lake Controller v6.4 also incorporates comprehensive implementation of Lab.gruppen’s exclusive RPM (Rational Power Management), including the AutoRPM feature first introduced in v6.3.1 earlier this year. As implemented in Lab.gruppen’s new PLM+ Series and D Series Lake products, AutoRPM enables automatic allocation of power available to each output channel, optimized for the connected loads, simply by raising or lowering the ISVPL limiter settings in Lake Controller. 

“With these new features, we are confident that Lake Controller will further cement its established reputation as the most powerful and flexible DSP software for large scale sound reinforcement applications,” comments Andersson.
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