Cinema is as popular a form of entertainment as it has
ever been, but today’s audiences are more demanding than ever. Fulfilling those
expectations was the main requirement of Norway’s Bergen Kino, when it
commissioned the installation of an Alcons system at the country’s highest
Built in 1918, originally as a concert hall,
Konsertpaléet screen 1 (KP1) is the premier cinema auditorium in Bergen, Norway
and attracts cinephiles from across Scandinavia to enjoy its quality
surroundings, sound and vision facilities. Recently it underwent a major
refurbishment programme to become a true reference class cinema, with owning
company Bergen Kino keen to provide filmgoers with a cinema experience that was
in a league of its own.
Alongside contractors providing new seating, lighting
and improved interior design, Bergen Kino contracted Unique Cinema Systems to
install Alcons’ latest, cutting-edge C series system, designed for superior
(digital) cinema sound reproduction.
The system comprises 5 pcs. CR5 front of house pro-ribbon screen systems, designed for auditoriums of 500
seats and upwards, 20 pcs. Cinema Ribbon Monitor System (CRMS) surround speakers and 4 pcs. BF362 double 18” subwoofers.
The first true cinema system that utilises line-source
technology throughout, the CR5 provides non-compressed reproduction and
extended dynamic range and optimal acoustic
coupling efficiency. A triple RBN401
pro-ribbon array HF section allows a cinema-unique flat SPL coverage from front
to rear, with very precise projection;
while the quad-6.5” MF section features projection control and increased
output through acoustical coupling with a minimal depth waveguide. Despite the
system’s shallow, 35cm design allowing it to be very economical in its spatial
requirements, it makes no compromise on audio quality.
The CRMS surround speakers
feature an RBN401 pro-ribbon HF section with an 8”
midbass woofer. The system’s 800W peak power handling offers a 1:15 dynamic
range. The CRMS surrounds were chosen to obtain the same mid-high frequency
response “ear print” as from the front system, offering the same unique sound
timbre throughout the auditorium.
“UCS was the first company to offer Alcons loudspeaker
products to the Scandinavian cinema industry. The company’s pro-ribbon
technology, though more costly, offers much more transparent and crisp sound
reproduction than conventional systems,” says Eyvind Ljungquist of UCS.
“The clarity and lack of distortion, which listeners
have learned to appreciate and expect from high-end headphones and HiFi
systems, have always been missed in cinema audio. The sound system installed at
KP1 is a major leap forward in that direction. UCS felt that these speakers
would perfectly suit KP1 as a reference-class cinema.
Through the array of pro-ribbon and mid-frequency
drivers, the CR5 acts in a line-array-like manner, offering vastly improved
coverage control and directivity, which are both very important features in
cinemas,” Eyvind continues.
As the first installation of the CR5 system, UCS was
confident that the Alcons technology would provide audio quality unsurpassed by
any other system designed for large auditoria. In this, they - as well as
Bergen Kino and its audiences - have not been disappointed.
The Bergen Kino management understands that customers
are becoming increasingly demanding and that what was ‘good enough’ yesterday
won’t suffice now and in the future.
Einar Jakobsen, technical manager Bergen Kino:
"we are truly very pleased with the Alcons systems; The cinema experience
in KP1 is unsurpassed and it is very well recognized by our visitors, proven by
the excellent feedback we get".