Following an exclusive preview in front of FOH engineers, sound technicians, distributors and customers in Miami in March 2021, DAS Audio has unveiled its LARA line array system for the first time in a tradeshow environment at 26 April at Prolight + Sound 2022, with follow up previews at ISE Show 2022 and the NAMM Show in Los Angeles.
The LARA line array system reflects the brand’s firm commitment to technology, having also presented ALMA – its new system control and monitoring software created by sound engineers for sound engineers at PL + S. “It’s a product that’s going to be on a lot of Technical Riders. It’s going to mark a significant change for DAS,” Luis Fonsi’s FOH Engineer, Yamil Martínez remarked.
Coinciding with its 50th anniversary, the Spanish company presents a wide range of technological solutions, not only for live events but also for commercial installations. DAS Audio Head of Engineering and CEO, Javier Navarro highlighted: “Our intention is that these new tools mark a paradigm shift for the brand. Celebrating 50 years of history might be a coincidence, but it is certainly charged with symbolism. We strongly believe in the work done over the years and in the team behind it.”
Juan Luis Guerra’s FOH Engineer, Amable Frómeta, added: “I am very impressed with the system; I really like it. The coverage is excellent, very homogeneous. I was very impressed by the quality of the vocals; it is an extremely coherent system. A great job with the cardioid, the truth is that it disappears just below the system, it is not even necessary to go behind it.”
LARA is a powered, cardioid, four-way line array system with a symmetrical design. LARA offers 146dB linear MAX SPL and wide dynamic range, making it an ideal system for large events. The cardioid design provides a remarkable attenuation at the back, behind the system, of 15dB in the 63Hz to 200Hz range. Not only does it help the artists on stage, but also reduces the noise pollution generated by any live event.
Randy White of Chuck Levin’s Washington Music Center said: “It’s an impressive and clean system with great coverage, making it extremely efficient. LARA will mark a new era for DAS Audio.”
Power efficiency is yet another highlight of the LARA systems. Powersoft class D amplifiers integrate a switch-mode power supply with power factor correction (PFC), ensuring maximum performance and efficiency regardless of the mains voltage. Each set provides a total of 6000Wrms of power, divided into 8 channels, to feed the two by 12″ and the two compression drivers, the two front-facing 8” and the two rear-facing 8”. “Compared to all other line arrays on the market, this one is completely revolutionary.” Reflections Productions’ Arturo de Jesus Morejón noted.
All LARA components have been custom designed and manufactured to maximize system efficiency. The system incorporates two 12″ bass loudspeakers with 4″ voice coils, plus two 8″ speakers in cardioid configuration. To cover the mid-frequency range, two 8″ speakers with 2.5″ voice coils are used. The high frequency section consists of two DAS M-78N compression drivers with 3” voice coils and a waveguide with a horizontal coverage of 100º.
Rubén Blades’ FOH Engineer, Oscar Marín stated: “The coverage is impressive, on all frequencies, but what I liked the most is that the TOPs are also cardioid. I’m looking forward to experiencing this system live.”
On top of what can be expected from DAS Audio and from a line array of this category, the brand have also included some very outstanding features, which constitute a major improvement for the sound engineer; Control and monitoring for each frequency section, self-positioning and arrangement of the systems in an array, EQ for groups or single speakers, integration of the DASaim optimisation tool (FIR), creation of ONline and OFFline projects, etc.
“Expectations are high, the equipment really sounds spectacular. It is ready for any Technical Rider,” Bad Bunny’s sound and production team – Rolando Leo, Brian Martinez, Luis Velasquez – said.
The three-point rigging system is another great feature used in both LARA and LARA SUB, allowing to fly arrays of up to 24 LARA units and 16 LARA SUB units. The FSSTM (Fast Set Splay) system allows the angles to be adjusted in 1° steps, from 0° to 7°, from the ground-stack position, reducing assembly time significantly.
During the final stage of the system and software development process, DAS Audio conducted a beta-tester programme to ensure usability of the new tools and maximise performance. “This programme has allowed us to evaluate the system in real and very demanding situations, the response of the system and feedback from the engineers could not have been better,” Navarro commented.
The systems have already been chosen for tours and festivals throughout Spain. They will make their official debut at the Lanxess Arena in Cologne (Germany) on 30 April, on 14 May at the Estopa concert in Barcelona and Izal in A Coruna, as part of their Spanish tour.