Capital’s collaboration with NEXO stems from the very first hypothetical discussions about a new high-spec loudspeaker system. Chosen in 2010 as one of three international Development Team Members, Capital has had influential input into the system’s design, and will be instrumental in the next phase of its evolution, applying its technical expertise and experience at the highest levels of touring to ensure the STM Series meets its full potential.
“Originally, it was an opportunity to influence the design of a loudspeaker system so that the final product was more in line with our ideals,” explains Capital’s Ian Colville. “As the STM concept emerged, this was replaced with a desire to be involved in the development of a genuinely groundbreaking and unique product. Nothing was used as starting point, nor was it based on an existing product. All of the STM components, materials and manufacturing techniques have been optimised for one product and one purpose.”
The result of this process is NEXO’s new flagship PA system; designed to boost profitability by combining flexibility and modularity with exceptional sound quality, throw and ease of rigging, STM draws on NEXO’s classic Alpha Series of point source cabinets, sharing the basic principles of scale through modularity. The initial touring range incorporates three elements; the M46 Main cabinet, B112 Bass cabinet and S118 Sub-bass cabinet, which allow users to build systems for audiences from 200 to 100,000.
“With profit margins being squeezed, it’s crucial for the success of rental companies to get the maximum flexibility from their inventories,” continues Capital’s Paul Timmins. “As digital consoles become inflexible due to personal choice, it’s more important that the loudspeaker system, which is the element that generally ‘gets you the show’, is working constantly. Prep costs money and this system just requires configuration between projects, with no rebuilds necessary.”
The scalability of STM also held great appeal for Capital, whose projects range from 10 people at small corporate events to stadium and outdoor shows for 60,000 plus. “What has become evident is that most current loudspeaker systems require you to stock up to four sizes of line array boxes to cover the variation in room sizes,” says Timmins. “Often, during the winter months, an entire inventory of large format loudspeakers can sit idle while there is a shortage of small and mid-sized cabinets. The concept of STM is amazing, with true multi-use options for all components including the amplifier racks. System designs can take into consideration not only room limitations but also musical content. It’s a fantastic addition to the tool box.”
STM is the first NEXO acquisition for Capital. “We hope new clients that have experienced NEXO in the past will want to work with us as we make the system available,” says Timmins. “This in turn will give us a greater market share of clients wanting to embrace true second generation system technology. The relationship with NEXO is a great thing as they are a strong manufacturer who will make this product globally available from premier league rental suppliers – crucial in modern day touring. Why ship a loudspeaker system when you can consistently rent from a choice of worldwide suppliers? We will be forging relationships with new partners to offer STM.”
Capital, which will ultimately own a 48-box system an inventory of 48x M46 Mains, 48x B112 Bass and 48x S118 Subs, is initially planning to introduce the components on small-scale events. This will ramp up during summer 2013 to larger projects that will allow engineers to get to grips with its full capabilities.
“NEXO has been a great company to work with,” concludes Timmins of the STM project. “They have a fantastic R&D team and they also know where all the best restaurants are!”