Las Vegas, Nevada—Mar 22, 2004
Digital B-Chain Networked Cinema Audio System from JBL Professional and Crown International Gains Strong Early Support
In Critical Markets
Reaffirming the sonic, economic and management advantages of its new Digital B-Chain cinema sound system, JBL Professional and Crown International are experiencing early adoption as the worldwide cinema market braces for the emerging era of digital cinema. Digital B-Chain is unique in that it enables cinemas to deliver quantifiable improvements in sound system performance, efficiency and reliability. In addition, Digital B-Chain sound systems are versatile, enabling exhibitors to easily re-purpose theaters for alternative applications such as pay-per-view sports and entertainment events, multi-site corporate meetings and even live performances.
“Digital B-Chain technology is being applauded by theatre exhibitors throughout the world,” said Chuck Goodsell, Director of Cinema Marketing at JBL Professional. “When combined with JBL Professional ScreenArray® cinema systems, DBC is meeting the challenge in the cinema market today. As we see the number of installed systems growing, it has become evident that DBC has emerged as the system of choice for this market.”
Indeed, high-end theaters across the world are embracing the technology. In August 2003, Protronic, (Switzerland’s biggest cinema installer) sold the technology to Walch Kinobetriebe AG in Basel to outfit Eldorado (389 seats), Europe’s first TCP IQ Cinema. During commissioning for that theater, Protronic made another deal for a second theater, Cinema Kuechlin (860 seats, 3 balconies), installed in September 2003. Prior to these installations of DBC, both cinemas had various problems with buzz, line loss and lack of dynamic headroom. Replacing the existing audio with the DBC platform realized audible changes. The owner and audience are very happy with the results.
In the U.S., fervent acceptance has been the norm. The Marcus Theatres Elgin Fox UltraScreen in Elgin, Illinois boasts the Midwest’s largest screen, a gigantic, three-story tall display that’s 75 feet wide. Theater management’s intent was to offer their customers the ultimate movie-going experience and needed an audio system that was a match for the amazing screen. Not only did they require that the performance of the audio be state-of-the-art, but it had to fit into the theater’s budget and design without upending the economics of the company. The decision was clear: Digital B-Chain.
In a DBC system, analog or digital audio is received from the cinema processor and is then transported on a digital audio and control network where it remains in the digital domain to the amplifiers. In the Elgin system, analog audio is received from the cinema processor and is then transported on a digital audio and control network where it remains in the digital domain to all nine Crown CTs Series amplifiers with IQ-PIP-USP3/CN modules, which power the ScreenArray screen channels, subs, and surround channels. Both the digital audio and control information are transported on a single network connection.
Automated error reporting allows technicians and users to learn about potential system errors before they happen and alerts technicians immediately of any problems, providing specific data on where to locate the problem. The entire audio system can be controlled and monitored on the same facility network as concessions management, box office ticketing, HVAC, etc., lowering infrastructure costs. These features, combining the high performance of digital audio, advanced signal control and excellent cost controls, are proving attractive to theaters across the globe. In addition to systems going into Switzerland and Japan, U.S. installs are increasing, with additional recent installations at Digital Circus in Raleigh, NC. and SoundStorm in Burbank, CA. The list continues to grow.