Belgian rental company SBE has become the latest technical provider to join Martin Audio’s growing family of award-winning MLA adopters, having recently purchased an MLA Compact Multi-cellular Loudspeaker Array from Belgium distributors, FACE bvba.
A small, sound and lighting provider based in West Flanders, SBE specialises in a wide range of corporate events, weddings, concerts, sporting events and parties.
Run by Stephan Bohez, the company purchased its first Martin Audio system, the original Wavefront 8, as far back as 1989. Its hire fleet today includes Martin Audio’s popular W8LM line array and LE1500 floor monitors as well as DD6, Blackline F12+ and WS218X.
The W8LM had been a perfect front-line PA while they were servicing events for a maximum of 2,000 people. “But when this grew to 3,000-4,000, and the bands started to get bigger we knew we needed to upgrade,” he said. “We recently handled a five day party in West Flanders, with MLA Compact for the first time, with 1500-3,000 people attending each day, were very impressed.”
For Bohez this was hardly an impulsive purchase as he had attended the original MLA main system demonstration in Antwerp as far back as 2010, where its extraordinary tapering properties were demonstrated for the first time. “Stephan was convinced not only by this event but every time he heard the system subsequently,” said FACE’s Project Division Manager, Steven Kemland, who handled the sale. “MLA Compact really sounded much more powerful and was a better option than upgrading to a larger W8LM line array.”
He added that SBE recognised the extra value in a product that was exploiting a gap in the market over conventional line array. “They are always one of the first companies in Belgium to invest in new technology, and know they will be able to sub-rent products to other parties when they are short of inventory.”
Stephan Bohez confirmed this, and now believes the new system will also bring in new work. “We want to make everyone aware that we have MLA, and that we have the know-how to use it.”
Having supported the sale since day one, Steven Kemland confirms that operational training leading to full MLA certification will follow before the end of the year.