In the autumn of 2016, the world’s first Genelec Experience Centre opened its doors in London and started to receive visitors from the music, broadcast, post and AV Install sectors – all of whom are encouraged to visit the Centre to hear its formidable array of Genelec monitors in action, and to learn more about speaker selection, placement and calibration.
The Experience Centre is located right in the very heart of London’s post-production community – which has traditionally been rooted in the Soho area, but is now steadily starting to spill across Oxford Street into the Fitzrovia district where rooms are often larger, yet slightly less expensive (well, by London’s standards!). The Centre allows visitors to choose source material of virtually any format and evaluate Genelec monitors in stereo, surround and immersive audio configurations. The brilliance of the Centre’s audio architecture is the ability to route any source to any destination – so visitors can choose to audition anything from a stereo pair of compact 8010A monitors to a full blown 7.1.4 immersive audio system.
The Power Of SAM
In line with Genelec’s increasing commitment to the use of DSP to optimise audio performance, the SAM monitor range is very well represented, since this 7.1.4 system is based around 8351As - while the Centre’s second smaller 5.1 surround system is built around 8320As. A third surround system utilises in-wall and in-ceiling models from Genelec’s architectural series, to demonstrate how well Genelec speaker technology also performs in commercial and residential installations.
The Experience Centre is being overseen by Howard Jones, who joined Genelec as International Project Manager in the summer of 2016.
Jones explains the thinking behind the Centre:
“We wanted to create a room that is accessible to end users, dealers and distributors, not only to enable them to audition Genelec monitors in a well-treated, controlled environment – but also to come and learn about the technology itself, and to see how it’s possible to turn an unconventional shaped room like this into a great sounding space. The asymmetry of the room and it’s low ceiling is very typical of the sort of rooms that many end users are working with – and we’ll show visitors how relatively simple acoustic treatment and the power of Genelec’s SAM technology has transformed a somewhat challenging space into something quite special.”
Bringing Audio Professionals Together
By virtue of its central London location, Jones also sees the Experience Centre as a hub for the pro audio community in the capital:
“Once we started to plan the Centre, we realised that there are almost endless applications for a space like this. Dealer and distributor training, product showcases, press events, clinics, seminars, video shoots – all can be hosted here in the firm knowledge that whatever audio is being played back, it’s benefitting from the most incredible monitoring system that is currently rivalled only by Genelec’s own factory auditorium in Finland. Our seminar program kicked off this November with a talk on Loudness in Streaming and Broadcast by our own Thomas Lund, and we were delighted to see the talk attract some of the UK’s finest mastering engineers to the Centre. We plan many more events like this, and we think it’s fitting that an innovative company like Genelec should be leading the way in bringing audio professionals together to discuss new developments and trends in our industry."