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					oAsis oF The seAs
How to build a mixed-use entertainment complex in a floating metal shell.

              By judith ruBin
                 In the world of themed entertainment devel-
              opment, there is a tendency mentally to parti-
              tion off the cruise ship industr y. The reason-
              ing goes that, between land-based and marine-
              based projects, the specialized parameters of
              shipbuilding and marine operations impose a
              gulf that is hard to cross. Those parameters
              are real and inescapable but, at the same time,
              the modern cruise ship industr y offers valu-
              able lessons and opportunities. Albeit on water,
              these projects are mixed-use visitor attractions
              that, in terms of the guest experience they de-
              liver, the family market they target and the ex-
              tensive audiovisual systems they employ, have
              a great deal in common with their land-based

52   Sound & Communications                      To email, print or create a PDF of this page, go to
Amphibians: Both
land And sea
   In terms of the streamlined design
and production models to which these
projects adhere, the need for most ven-
ues to be multipurpose and the neces-
sity of being operable and maintainable
24/7 with the staff at hand, they of-
fer exemplar y, creative solutions for
today’s leaner, meaner and greener
mandates. And the gulf is not impass-
able: Although there are companies
that specialize heavily in cruise ships,
there are others—amphibians, if you
will—whose portfolios encompass both
land and sea.
   An examination of Royal Caribbean
Cruise Line’s Oasis of the Seas, the
biggest cruise ship in the world, is a
good way to demonstrate our point.
Time calls Oasis “a giant leisure ma-
chine, with more spas, pools, bars and
activities than you could probably hit
in a week.” With seven themed zones
and 50-plus venues featuring state-of-
the-art technologies for entertainment,
display and communications, the 16-
deck, 5400-passenger, 225,282-ton, $1.4
billion ship, which is 1181 feet long and
154 feet wide, has been making inter-
national headlines since its November
2009 debut.
                                                In the Royal Promenade, the Rising Tide Bar, a slow moving elevator bar.

Aqua-Theater                                architecture, and both these theaters       and a bridge connecting the two high-
And opal Theater                            are relatively wide—the width of the        dive boards, which can support an en-
   Theater consultant Fisher Dachs          ship—and shallow, with a thrust stage.      tire row of divers. On the underbelly
( and audio/            The Aqua-Theater, the ship’s most           of this bridge are lights and nozzles
acoustics specialist Jaffe Holden (www.     elaborate and unusual venue, presents       that send a water curtain into the pool are two of those ver-      a nightly dive spectacular, a richly in-    below. A trapeze hanging behind the
satile companies with one foot on the       tegrated mix of live performance, AV,       high-dive boards creates the illusion
ground and one on the boat. Project         lighting and effects. Its saltwater pool,   that the trapeze artists are climbing
Manager Peter Rosenbaum of Fisher           which Royal Caribbean states to be the      the water curtain.
Dachs and Audio Designer Mark Tur-          largest and deepest saltwater pool at
pin, with Acoustician Russ Cooper, of       sea, is 21.9 feet long by 51.6 feet wide    Fan-shaped stage
Jaffe Holden, were closely involved in      by 17.9 feet deep.                            The stage is fan-shaped and converts
the planning and design of Oasis’ two          Throughout the evenings, the Aqua-       to a platform for lounge chairs during
large theaters, the Aqua-Theater (ca-       Theater presents choreographed foun-        the day. To develop the overall strategy
pacity of 735) and Opal Theater (capac-     tain shows with hundreds of water noz-      with the architect for how the Aqua-
ity of 2161).                               zles—some capable of shooting water         Theater would function physically,
   Cruise ship theaters tend to be          65 feet high—programmed to music            “we started out with the show con-
wider and shallower than comparable         and lights. There is a giant trampoline     cept: a performance based on a pool
theaters on land due to the marine          centered between two diving towers                             (continued on page 57)

Judith Rubin ( is a freelance writer and editor specializing in themed attractions and enter-
tainment technology.

                                                                                                                March 2010    53
 rOyAl PrOMenAde
 28 Atlas FAP42TC ceiling speakers
 6 Atlas FAPSUB ceiling subs
 1 Aviom 6416m mic input module Pro64
 2 Aviom 6416Y2 Pro64 A-net cards for Yamaha
 1 Aviom A-16D Pro A-Net distributor
 6 Aviom A-16II personal mixers
 1 Aviom A-16R rackmount personal mixer
 1 Aviom ASI A-Net interface
 1 Aviom MCS mic control surface
 1 Aviom MH10 A-Net merger hub
 1 Aviom RCI remote-control interface
 2 BSS BLU-120 (0 in x 16 out) DSP expansion
 1 BSS BLU-120 (8 in x 8 out) DSP expansion
 3 BSS BLU-3 UK version DSP remote control panels
 1 BSS BLU-800 (8 in x 8 out) DSP processor                        Royal Promenade audio booth.
 1 BSS BLU-8-BLK DSP remote control panel
 1 Clear-Com SB-704 4-channel main station+psu
 4 Clear-Com CC-260 double-muff headsets
 8 Clear-Com CC-95 single-muff headsets
 4 Clear-Com HS-6 handsets
 1 Clear-Com RM-704 4-channel remote rack station
 4 Clear-Com RS-601 single-channel beltpacks
 28 Elation Impression 10° narrow lenses
 1 ETC CEM+ module dimmer control module
 24 ETC D20 dimmer modules
 1 ETC dimmer rack SR24+ w/accessories
 8 Furman RL-LED LED rack lights
 2 Genelec 8030A booth monitors
 1 High End USB LTC SMPTE widget
 1 High End USB playback wing
 1 High End Whole Hog 3 package
 2 HME 30' remote antenna kits                                      Swingframe audio rack
 8 HME BP200 wireless intercom belt packs                           with wireless receivers
 2 HME BS200 wireless intercom base stations                        in a Royal Promenade
 8 HME HS14 wireless intercom headsets                              rack.
 2 HME splitter/combiner wireless intercom antenna splitters
 1 HP Procurve PWR 24-port 10/100 + 2-port GB POE
 2 Littlite 18XR-4-LED 4-pin LED console lights
 6 Martin Jem K1 208V hazers
 22 Martin MAC250 Entour 208V moving head fixtures
 14 Meyer Sound UCS-1P powered subs
 42 Meyer Sound UPA-1P powered speakers                                      Lighting and audio
    Meyer Sound M-10 subwoofers                                           connection panels for
 2 Middle Atlantic SLIM 5-14 racks w/accessories                         the Royal Promenade.
 6 Ocotec 20U SWL racks
 1 Oxmoor MDA-26T distribution amp                                  10   Shure UR1-J5 beltpack transmitters
 10 Pathway 6202 Pathport C-Series 2 DMX outputs                    10   Shure UR2/87 Beta-J5 handheld wireless mics
 1 QSC CX108V 70V 8-channel amp                                     5    Shure UR4D-J5 dual wireless receivers
 1 QSC CX204V 70V 4-channel amp                                     1    Shure VP88 stereo mic
 1 Rane ML1 live mic preamp                                         5    Swisson XRD-TR-TR DMX splitters, double
 4 Renkus-Heinz CF121M-2 120V powered monitor speakers              1    TASCAM CD-RW901SL CD recorder
 4 Shure P7TR-L2 wireless monitor transmitter/receivers             1    TASCAM CD-01UPro CD player w/AES/EBU
 2 Shure PA805SWB wideband unidirectional antenna                   1    TASCAM SS-R1 CF player/recorder
 1 Shure PA821 antenna splitter for in-ear system                   1    W-DMX A40001 S-1 DMX wireless transmitter
 6 Shure SCL5-CL in-ear monitors                                    6    W-DMX A40102 R-512 DMX wireless receivers w/antenna
 4 Shure SM57-LC mics                                                    Whirlwind quad mic cables
 4 Shure SM58-LC mics                                               1    Yamaha DM2000 V2VCM+MB2000+SP2000 digital mixer
 2 Shure SM81-LC mics                                                     w/meter bridge, side panels
 2 Shure SM87-LC mics                                               1    Yamaha MY16-CII CobraNet digital I/O card
 2 Shure UA845SWB antenna distribution systems                      3    Yamaha MY8ADDA96 analog I/O cards (Euroblock conn)
 4 Shure UA870WB active antennas (directional)                      List is edited from information supplied by FUNA.

54   Sound & Communications                            To email, print or create a PDF of this page, go to
Aqua theater
1 360 Systems DR-600 Instant Replay 2 instant access player
1 Adtec Sign Edje MPEG player
   Audio Accessories patch bays, TT-style, cables
1 AutoPatch FGP44-4864-110 composite video matrix
1 AutoPatch Optima RGBHV matrix
2 Barco Olite 612 25'x13' weatherproof videowalls
2 beyerdynamic DT-770-PRO 80 headphones
1 Bittree B48T-2WNHD video patch bay, 2x24, internal normals
   Bittree VPC1807-75 video patch bay cables
1 BSS BLU-120 (0 in x 16 out) DSP expansion
1 BSS BLU-120 (8 in x 8 out) DSP expansion
1 BSS BLU-800 (8 in x 8 out) DSP processor
1 BUFTEK IFD-422 control interface
1 BUFTEK IFD-422M control interface
10 Clark Synthesis AC339 underwater speakers
3 Clear-Com RM-704 remote rack stations (4 channel)
4 Clear-Com CC-260 headsets (double muff)                       View of the Aqua-Theater from the audio booth.
10 Clear-Com CC-95 headsets (single muff)
4 Clear-Com FL-1 call signal flashers
1 Clear-Com GM-18 18" gooseneck panel mic
1 Clear-Com IF-4W4 4-wire conversion
2 Clear-Com KB-701 remote wall stations (1 channel)
6 Clear-Com RS-601 remote belt packs
12 Community W2-2V8W speakers
18 Community W2-2W8W speakers
4 Community W2-312-64HW speakers
5 Dynacord DPC 4510 paging stations
1 Dynacord DPM 4000 digital paging matrix
1 Dynacord NRS 90215 paging station module
1 Dynacord NRS 90216 audio input module
1 Dynacord NRS 90218 audio output module
12 Electro-Voice XLD291-WH-NL speakers
4 Electro-Voice XLD GRID CCA line array rigging frames
4 Electro-Voice XS212-WH-NL subs
2 Evertz 7701FR+PSX 3-slot video multi frames
2 Evertz 8-channel fiber SDI receive cards
2 Evertz 8-channel fiber SDI transmit cards
2 Evertz audio embedders                                        Aqua-Theater amplifier room.
1 Evertz dual A to D converter
1 Evertz single A to D converter
5 Evertz D to A converters                                      1   Marshall V-R151DP-AFSD hi-res 1x7.9" LCD display + audio
1 Evertz 15-slot video multi frame                              2   Marshall V-R44P rackmount full-color 4x4" active matrix LCD panels
8 Furman RL-LED LED rack lights                                 2   Marshall V-R563P rackmount active matrix 3x4" LCD panels
4 Genelec 8030A booth monitors                                  7   Marshall V-R82DP-2C 2x8.4" LCD monitor sets
1 HDfury Gamer Edition or Blue Edition HDMI to VGA converter    4   Martin MAC700 Profile (208V) moving head fixtures
2 High End Axon digital media servers                           1   Medialon GD_SCMIII + AD_RG1_PCI + SL_DMX_PCI show
1 High End USB LTC SMPTE Widget                                      control machine w/SMPTE card + DMX card
1 High End USB playback wing                                    1   Medialon MNG_V5L Manager V5 Lite show control software
1 High End Whole Hog 3 digital lighting console w/accessories   1   Medialon MSCH Scheduler show control scheduling software
8 HME BP200 wireless intercom belt packs                        1   Meyer Sound Cue Mixer LCS mixing control surface
2 HME BS200 wireless intercom base stations                     2   Meyer Sound LX-ELC LCS EtherTracks modules
8 HME HS14 wireless intercom headsets                           1   Meyer Sound MS-WTHD multitrack playback dual hard drive
2 HME splitter/combiner wireless intercom antenna splitters     1   Middle Atlantic MRK4431 rack
2 Horita TR-100 SMPTE clocks                                    1   Middle Atlantic SLIM 5-14 rack
10 Inyo Aquasonic in-wall mounting assembly kits                4   Middle Atlantic WRK4427 racks w/accessories
2 Jensen Transformers DIN-LI isolation transformer module 10    3   MIDI Solutions 1-in 2-out MIDI thru boxes
2 Jensen Transformers DIN-LO-11FL isolation transformer         3   Ocean Technology Systems EMOTS-2 underwater com, FFM
     module 600                                                      mic/ear speakers
16 Listen LR-400-216 RF receivers w/antenna kit                 1   Ocotec 40U SWL rack
1 Listen LT-800-216 RF transmitter w/rack mount                 1   Ocotec 40U SWL rack
12 Littlite L-18-LED gooseneck lamps w/PS                       2   Oxmoor MDA-26T distribution amps
7 Magenta MultiView MV500A VGA Cat6 receivers                   1   Panasonic WJ-SW208 video camera
2 Magenta MultiView XRTx VGA transmitters                       2   Panasonic WV-CS954 video cameras
5 Magenta WSTx-A PC input panels                                1   Panasonic WV-CU161C single-camera system controller

56   Sound & Communications                          To email, print or create a PDF of this page, go to
3    Panasonic WV-CW964 video cameras                                                 (continued from page 53)
2    Peerless ST635 tilt brackets for 22" LCDs                                        and taking design cues from Cirque,
2    QSC AD-CI52ST 70V in-ceiling speakers                                            high-dive acts, acrobatics, gymnastics
12   QSC AD-S32T speakers                                                             and scuba diving,” said Rosenbaum,
12   QSC AD-S52T 70V surface-mount speakers, w/yoke bracket
6    QSC CX1102 2-channel amps
                                                                                      “then plugging in all the various com-
1    QSC CX204V amp 70V 4-channel amp                                                 ponents related to the uses it would
3    QSC CX302 2-channel amps                                                         have outside of the performance: scuba
11   QSC CX404 4-channel amps                                                         diving lessons, regular swimming and
1    QSC CX502 2-channel amps                                                         so forth, to activate the space around
2    QSC CX602V 70V 2-channel amps                                                    the clock.”
7    QSC CX702 2-channel amps                                                           Turpin compared the challenges
1    Rane HC6S headphone amp
1    Rane MLM 42S mic/line mixer
                                                                                      to those that designers would have
2    Remote Ocean Systems CA-62-20 underwater                                         faced creating some of the big Las
       camera cables/connectors                                                       Vegas aquatic spectacles such as O,
2    Remote Ocean Systems ROVer miniature                                             the Treasure Island pirate show or La
       color cameras                                                                  Reve. “Plus,” he said, “we were working
5    Samsung 943T 19" hi-def LCD monitor                                              at sea and the venue converts ever y
2    Samsung LN22B360 22" HD LCD monitors                                             night from a public space to a perfor-
1    Shure UA221 antenna combiner (pair)
4    Shure UA830USTV active antennas
                                                                                      mance space.”
1    Shure UA845SWB antenna distribution system                                         In addition to being open to the
4    Shure UR1-J5 beltpack transmitters                                               sea and weather, the Aqua-Theater is
4    Shure UR2/58-J5 handheld wireless mics                                           cheek-by-jowl with numerous other
2    Shure UR4D-J5 dual wireless receivers                                            elements of the ship, making sound
2    Shure WL50B lavalier omni mics                                                   containment an issue. “It’s positioned
7    Sony BRU-300 optical multiplex camera units    The Aqua-Theater’s audio booth.   at the fantail, on the top level. A rock
7    Sony BRC-300 PTZ3 CCD video cameras
5    Sony BRCSDP12 outdoor camera housings
                                                                                      climbing wall is above it, and about
7    Sony BRBK302 SDI interface cards                                                 half a dozen staterooms have terrace
7    Sony BRBK303 fiber interface cards                                               decks, like balconies, overlooking it,”
5    Swisson XRD-TR-TR DMX splitters                                                  obser ved Turpin. Enabling the state-
1    TASCAM CD-RW901SL CD player/recorder                                             room occupants to tune in or tune out
1    TASCAM DV-D01U DVD player                                                        at will to the nightly show, these “box
2    TV One 1T-C2-100 scan converters                                                 seats” have individually controllable
2    TV One C2-2355A universal I/O video switcher/scalers
     Whirlwind MK420 mic cables
                                                                                      loudspeakers. (Think of it as similar
1    Yamaha DM1000 VCM + SP1000 + MB1000 digital mixer w/side panels + meter bridge   to living in Anaheim and hearing the
2    Yamaha MY8ADDA96 analog I/O cards (Euroblock conn)                               Disney fireworks ever y night, albeit
List is edited from information supplied by FUNA.                                     muffled.)
                                                                                                         (continued on page 59)

                                                                                                                 March 2010   57
 MAin tHeAter
 1 360 Systems DR-600 Instant Replay 2 instant access player
 6 AKG C451B mics
 5 AKG C518M mics
 4 AKG D112 mics
 6 AKG D40 mics
 26 Atlas FAP42TC ceiling speakers
    Audio Accessories patch bay, cables
 8 Audio-Technica ATM350 mics
 8 Aviom A-16II personal mixers
 2 Aviom A-16D Pro A-Net distributors
    Belkin KVM switches, cables, accessories
 3 BSS BLU-120 DSP expansion
 1 BSS BLU-800 8 in x 8 out DSP processor
 4 Clear-Com FL-1 call signal flashers
                                                                       A FUNA custom-made rack in Main Theater audio booth.
 1 Clear-Com GM-18 18" gooseneck panel mic
 3 Clear-Com KB-701 portable intercom speakers, enclosures            1    Oxmoor MDA-26T distribution amp
 3 Clear-Com RM-704 4-channel remote rack stations                    36   Pathway 6202 Pathport C-Series 2 DMX outputs
 1 Comtrol Devicemaster RTS 8-port DB9 serial port/E-net box          3    Peavey D4S + power supply (1) paging control panel + PS
 20 Countryman Type 85 direct boxes                                   1    Peavey PZS-140RA paging mixer amp rack mount
 3 Crown PZM6D mics                                                   40   QSC AD-S82 surround speakers
 1 DiGiCo CS-D5 digital audio console w/accessories                   4    QSC CX1102 2-channel amps
 6 DPA 4061 CM10 lavalier mics, lo-sens (Shure UR1)                   2    QSC CX302V 70V 2-channel amps
 10 DPA 4061 FM10 lavalier mics, lo-sens (Shure UR1)                  10   QSC CX404 4-channel amps
 6 DPA 4066 C10 mic headsets (Shure UR1)                              2    QSC CX702 2-channel amps
 10 DPA 4066 F10 mic headsets (Shure UR1)                             1    RME ADI-648 digital audio converter
 6 Electro-Voice N/D 468 mics                                         2    Samsung 743BX 17" LCDs
 2 Electro-Voice RE 27 N/D mics                                       4    Samsung 943T 19" LCDs
 3 Electro-Voice US690 gooseneck paging mics                          6    Sennheiser MD421 II mics
 2 Genelec 8040A booth monitors                                       6    Sennheiser MD431 II mics
 2 High End Axon digital media servers                                2    Shure Beta 52A mics
 1 High End Whole Hog 3 Package digital lighting console              6    Shure Beta 56A mics
     w/processor, case                                                6    Shure Beta 87C mics
 2 HME BS200 (K26693) wireless intercom base station, accessories     6    Shure Beta 98D/S mics
 2 Horita TR-100 SMPTE clocks                                         4    Shure KSM137/SL mics
 2 HP Procurve 2610-24 PWR 24 Port 10/100 + 2 Port GB POE             5    Shure MX393/S boundary supercardioid mics
 12 JBL SRX712M monitor speakers                                      8    Shure P7TR-H3 wireless monitor transmitter/receivers
 2 Jensen Transformer DIN-LI isolation transformer module 10          2    Shure PA805SWB wideband unidirectional antennas
 2 Jensen Transformer DIN-LO-11FL isolation transformer module 600    1    Shure PA821 in-ear system antenna splitter
 17 Kovatek paging speakers w/volume control                          10   Shure SCL5-CL in-ear monitors
 1 Lexicon PCM96SUR-D digital effects processor, digital I/O          4    Shure SM57-LC mics
 4 Magenta MultiView MV500A VGA Cat6 receivers                        8    Shure SM58-LC mics
 2 Magenta MultiView T4A 4-port VGA Cat6 transmitters                 2    Shure SM81-LC mics
 16 Meyer Sound M’elodie powered speakers                             1    Shure SM91 mic
 2 Meyer Sound 600-HP powered subs                                    1    Shure UA221 antenna combiner (pair)
 2 Meyer Sound 700-HP powered subs                                    2    Shure UA830USTV active antennas
 3 Meyer Sound CQ-2 powered speakers                                  3    Shure UA845SWB antenna distribution systems
 1 Meyer Sound Cue Mixer LCS mixing control surface                   2    Shure UA870WB active antennas, directional
 2 Meyer Sound LX-ELC LCS EtherTracks modules                         16   Shure UR1-J5 beltpack transmitters
 10 Meyer Sound MM-4 speakers                                         4    Shure UR1-L3 beltpack transmitters
 2 Meyer Sound MM-4CEU MM4 controllers                                16   Shure UR2/87 Beta-J5 handheld wireless mics
 1 Meyer Sound MS-LX300 primary LCS frame                             4    Shure UR2/87 Beta-L3 handheld wireless mics
 2 Meyer Sound MS-LX300EXP expansion LCS frames                       10   Shure UR4D-J5 dual wireless receivers
 2 Meyer Sound MS-WTHD multitrack playback dual hard drives           2    Shure UR4D-L3 dual wireless receivers
 3 Meyer Sound UPA-2P powered speakers                                1    Shure VP88 stereo mic
 7 Meyer Sound UPJ-1P powered speakers                                4    Tannoy CMS601DC ceiling speakers
 12 Meyer Sound UPM-1P powered speakers                               2    TASCAM CD-01Upro CD players w/AES/EBU
 6 Middle Atlantic MRK4431 racks                                      1    TASCAM CD-RW901SL hi-res audio player/recorder
 12 Miditech AudioLink-PRO M110 IR modulator/repeaters                2    TASCAM IF-AD24 ADAT interface cards
 1 Miditech AudioLink-PRO M400 IR modulator                           1    TASCAM MD-350 mini disc recorder/player
 4 Miditech AudioLink-PRO R400 IR repeaters                           1    TASCAM SS-R1 CF player/recorder
 2 Neumann KM183MT mics                                               1    TASCAM X-48 digital record/playback system
 2 Neumann KM184 MT mics                                              1    TC Electronic EQ Station 8 EQ
 1 Ocotec 40U SWL rack                                                1    TC Electronic Moto Fader 64 EQ controller

58   Sound & Communications                        To email, print or create a PDF of this page, go to
Surround speakers for the Main Theater               Side by side local and PA speakers in the
are hidden behind these cloth panels.                Main Theater.

            1    Walther custom portable distribution assembly
            1    Whirlwind custom multi-pair fanout W4/XLR3M, mon console input
            1    Whirlwind custom multi-pin W4 connector for split box
            8    Whirlwind mic sub snakes
            8    Whirlwind mini 6-, 12-channel snakes
            12   Whirlwind WMD10-BK MIDI cables                                                    Amplifiers for surround speakers
            6    Yamaha IF2112/64 speaker (flying monitors)                                        in the Main Theater amplifier
            4    Yamaha IF-2208 Installation Series speakers                                       room.
            List is edited from information supplied by FUNA.

(continued from page 57)
  “Space isolation and architectural
                                                    Acoustic Planning                         the show would be amped above that
                                                                                              level. It’s just a simple analysis to know
                                                      Acoustically, Jaffe Holden’s scope
acoustics are a big part of what we                                                           how loud they would need to run that
                                                    of work was to review the space plan-
do,” Turpin said. “There are a lot of                                                         show.”
                                                    ning and make sure the sound of the
difficult adjacencies you don’t have in                                                         He added, “We couldn’t say, ‘Don’t
                                                    nearby exhaust engines didn’t inter-
most land-based theaters. Typically,                                                          put that there,’ or tell them to build a
                                                    fere with the show. “Because we can’t
mechanical spaces are adjacent. You                                                           wall to separate the Aqua-Theater from
                                                    really get involved with how the ship
can start out saying, ‘Don’t do that,’ but                                                    other areas. Royal Caribbean does now
                                                    maker designs engines, all we can do is
ships are made of steel. We rely on a                                                         avoid putting passenger cabins over
                                                    give advice about shielding based on a
lot of applied materials, and even those                                                      the engine room or the theater and,
                                                    sound-level analysis,” said Cooper. “We
can’t always be as heavy as we want.                                                          in the design of the Opal Theater, the
                                                    took noise from the engine to calculate
Ever y little bit matters. You can’t fill                                                     isolation surround is very significant.”
                                                    what it would be at the Aqua-Theater,
the ship full of high-density isolation                                                       Although passenger cabins might be
                                                    and provided that info so that, in nor-
materials. They weigh too much. This                                                          kept separate, other areas will be ad-
                                                    mal operating conditions, the sound of
forces us to be really inventive.”                                                            joining. “Usually they stack the public

                                                                                                                       March 2010     59
                                                                                       “We needed to hit the audience
                                                                                    squarely but keep of f the playing
                                                                                    space,” Cooper offered. “The sound is
                                                                                    mostly playback. The terracing of the
                                                                                    increasingly larger staterooms forms
                                                                                    a kind of under balcony for fills.” As
                                                                                    might be expected, the compelling na-
                                                                                    ture of this venue has made it a favorite
                                                                                    spot for all kinds of special events that
                                                                                    weren’t necessarily part of the original
                                                                                    plan. “It’s like what happens when you
                                                                                    build a theater in a school,” remarked
                                              Housings were custom made             Turpin. “The drama department thinks
                                               for the surround speakers.           it is theirs, but then all of the other
                                                                                    departments find out about it and stake
                                                                                    claims for its use.”
areas together.”                           to provide control, this enabled us to
  The main speakers are tightly fo-        achieve high-impact sound without        The Pool ‘Zone’
cused, cross-firing EV line arrays         having that sound travel down the ship     The pool had to be zoned to accom-
mounted underneath the dive plat-          and disturb other areas,” said Turpin.   modate the various performers: under-
forms. On each side, there are six         Having a very deep thrust stage and a    water, divers, gymnastic swimmers and
weatherproof EV XLD291s, accompa-          limited number of positions, it was a    others. But, in addressing this, Fisher
nied on each side by two EV XS212          challenge to deliver the sound to the    Dachs encountered another, unique
subwoofers. “There was no place for        audience in a tightly controlled pat-    concern. “We became aware of forces
a standard left-center-right array. In a   tern without causing feedback when       at play connected to the movement of
space with no architectural barriers       the lifts rise up to pool level.         the ship,” explained Rosenbaum. “We
did a hydrodynamic mockup to model
the water action within the pool, and
found that the frequency of the roll of
the ship would start generating waves
within the pool itself. The volume of
water in the pool is so great that, after
a short period of time, the water would
pump from side to side and just fly out
of the pool.”
   The modeling was done via computer
simulation as well as by using real wa-
ter in tanks on a motion base. To keep
the water from literally jumping out of
the pool during high seas, the solution
was to reduce the effective volume by
splitting it in half with a retractable
wall. The wall was provided by Han-
dling Specialty, which also fabricated
the three custom hydraulic lifts in the
pool and other mechanisms.                  Champagne Bar and Photo Gallery in the Royal Promenade.
   The high-dive platforms were de-
signed to be retractable and locked         or down, anything going over edge of        stage so you can seal off the floor,”
down for when not in use or when high       the lift doesn’t get sliced in half. The    said Rosenbaum. For all his and the
winds could create unsafe conditions.       pool has many niches and ledges and         company’s 15-year histor y designing
To ensure the safety of the divers en-      enclosures for divers, equipment, hose      theaters and performance spaces on
tering the water as part of the show, a     manifolds and lift guides—it isn’t a con-   Royal Caribbean ships, “it was the first
specially designed traffic light provides   tinuous smooth surface—so all holes         outdoor theater exposed to sea, and
a red/green signal as a backup to the       or openings had to be protected to al-      the first time we had to design rigging
deckhand’s thumbs up. Waterproof            low people to put their hands in and        to withstand salt water,” he remarked.
LED fixtures lining the edges of the        not get things caught.”                     “We had to design and choose materi-
lifts assist the performers in orienting                                                als appropriate for the severe environ-
themselves safely.                          Rotating Platform                           mental conditions. Many components
   All lifts have to interface with the       The rotating trampoline platform          are made of stainless steel, which is
cue light system and other safety           just upstage of the pool has to stow        ver y expensive and not typical for
devices. “Shear edge protection was         for safety when not being used. “We         performance rigging. Other materials
a necessity,” explained Rosenbaum.          created a barrel roll trampoline that       were epoxy coated.”
“That ensures that, if a lift is going up   closes by rotating into the floor of the      A full theatrical lighting package

                                                                                                                March 2010    61
                                                                                             Two views of a Royal Promenade
                                                                                             plasma screen: in full view and flush
                                                                                             with the ceiling.

was provided by FUNA International          ty briefings and mustering. Andy Smith        DM 1000 console, a junior version of
Inc. (, a mainstay pro-        of Boyce Nemec Design took part in            the DM 2000 used in several other
vider to Royal Caribbean, which sup-        designing the projection and video sys-       areas on the ship but with the same
plied audiovisual systems integration,      tems, which include, in addition to the       software platform. There are two con-
engineering and technical design of         big Barco walls, seven Sony BRC-300           trol booths, both on deck 12. The port
the Opal Theater, the Royal Prom-           robotic cameras, two of which shoot           booth has the video elements and to
enade and most other venues on this         through under water windows in the            starboard is lighting and sound.
vast ship. FUNA’s contract for the AV       pool. These capture the stage and the
systems was with the shipyard, STX          space from a variety of angles, and the       Rack Location
Europe.                                     footage is edited in the broadcast room          The bulk of the racks are housed
   “To pull off a job of this size and      for distribution via the ship’s television    below the Aqua-Theater. There are a
complexity required real cooperation        network. There are additional robotic         number of different technical spaces,
between FUNA, the shipyard and own-         cameras in the Opal Theater and other         not just for amps but also the consider-
er [RCI],” remarked FUNA Senior VP          venues to record performances and             able equipment associated with the lift
Doug Ellis, who is responsible for all      events that are shown on the ship’s           in the pool, drainage, filtration, chang-
the company’s activities in Finland.        TV the next day.                              ing rooms, electrical rockers and so
“FUNA’s Finland office was tasked with         Speakers in the pool from Clark Syn-       forth. It is, of course, important to keep
taking the conceptual designs and pro-      thesis help the aquatics team to hear         electricity and water separate, and this
ducing detailed production drawings;        the music under water. The control            is done with bulkheads: amplifiers and
building the racks; per forming the         gear includes a High End Whole Hog            AV equipment in one locker and water
installation, including all coordination    3 lighting console and Medialon show          filtration and pumps for the fountains
in the shipyard; testing the systems;       control system. The Dive-Com system,          in another.
and presenting them as ‘ready to com-       custom designed by FUNA to integrate             “Regarding cruise lines and Royal
mission’ to the commissioning teams,”       with the Clear-Com intercom system,           Caribbean in particular,” Turpin ob-
added Ellis. FUNA’s various entities in     allows the stage tech scuba divers to         ser ved, “we work on a lot of theaters,
six international locations came into       have constant communication with the          and we see theaters with many dif-
play: FUNA Oy (detailed design/instal-      production manager and safety riggers         ferent owners, but how many owners
lation), FUNA GmbH (commissioning)          using full-face scuba masks with mi-          own 25 theaters? That’s really extraor-
and FUNA Inc. (design, purchasing,          crophones and earphones from OTS              dinar y and changes the way we work
logistics and commissioning).               (Ocean Technology Systems).                   with someone. They have classes of
                                               When a significant portion of the          ships, and might build two or five of a
Water Works                                 stage is under water, safety is a pri-        particular theater design. They’re fun-
  Water works, jets and fountains are       mar y concern. It is imperative that          damentally the same design, but the
integrated into the pool and were pro-      safety divers have constant communi-          design and the process keep getting
vided by Cr ystal Fountains, Toronto.       cation with the production team. With         distilled.
Two large (25'x13') Barco Olite 612         the moving platforms in the water and            “Other than it being larger, Oasis’
weatherproof videowalls flank the           cast members diving in from all direc-        Opal Theater is similar to land-based
Aqua-Theater. These are fixed in place.     tions, safety was a very important facet      theaters in its technical design. It has
Like all video screens in the ship, these   of the design, which accordingly went         an exploded center array, line arrays
can be pulled into the digital signage      through many, many reviews.                   and a lot of installed effects speakers.
network for emergency messages, safe-          Sound mixing is done on a Yamaha           It was designed to have a device ev-

62    Sound & Communications                         To email, print or create a PDF of this page, go to
er y place you might need
a device, made accessible
to facilitate getting what
you want out of the room.
Today, venues are all multi-
purpose like this. Concert
halls are designed so they
can be four-walled for
   Turpin continued, “No-
body can afford to build
single purpose. Likewise,
Royal Caribbean wants Lighting pole with a custom-made
maximum usage out of subwoofer inside.
their spaces, and so, we
tr y to build-in maximum flexibility.
The only thing these theaters are not These showrooms really
designed for is acoustic music. Ev- do rival some of the best
er ything is reinforced; ever ything is theaters in Las Vegas.
tracked to time code. It comes back to     “In the Opal Theater,”
the fact that you cannot create as com- Warner continued, “the
pletely acoustically isolated a space as sound system is all Meyer
you can on land.”                        Sound, with a full LCS sur-
                                         round system package and
Maintainability                          Meyer Milo line arrays,
   “Royal Caribbean is very focused on and the front of house           The Atlas Globe. Opens up
maintainability,” said Turpin. “They console is a DiGiCo D5.            with folding bridge inside.
value interoperability, minimizing the The dimmers are all ETC,
number of parts and pieces. Having paired with quite an ex-
worked on a ship and been forced to tensive Martin moving light package. (eight retail outlets; nine restaurants
think that way is very useful when you There are 34 channels of Shure UHF and bars). Its central avenue accom-
go to a land-based venue. You think, wireless and a High End Whole Hog modates a regular parade schedule.
‘I can do this, but make it simpler.’ 3 lighting console.                           Special events and performances are
Simple is good. Clean is good. Mini-       “One of the shows they’re doing held on its several bandstands and sup-
mizing unnecessar y stuff is good. We in this theater is the Broadway show ported in other locations, as well. Here,
are all gear heads who like the latest, Hairspray, a slightly condensed version the audio mainstay, as in most venues
greatest toys, but we have to be disci- that has been quite successful. Usu- throughout the ship, is Meyer Sound
plined about what is the right tool for ally, they have a themed production self-powered loudspeakers.
the job. We do basically system design that includes ever ything from work-           “It’s a huge congregating area for
and not show design, but the more the ing with a live orchestra to 48 tracks most of the guests,” said Christopher
system designers understand how the of multitrack that plays along with the Vlassopulos, Entertainment Technol-
show designers are working, the better orchestra. These theaters always have ogy, Royal Caribbean International.
synthesis you achieve in terms of de- complete automated rigging systems “With Royal Caribbean, there’s a defi-
signing around designers’ needs today, with orchestra pit lifts, flying systems nite push to do things properly, and we
but also what the future might throw [in this case, Flying by Foy] and a com- surround ourselves with people who
at them.”                                plete rigging system [in this case, SKS know how to do this type of work.” Two
   FUNA Senior Project Manager Der- Mechatronics].”                                 ceiling troughs that run the full length
ek Warner gave a rundown. “I worked                                                 of the Promenade hold lighting and the
on ships through the ’90s and it is hard  Royal Promenade                           bulk of the audio, including 42 Meyer
to explain how much the industr y has      Another of Oasis’ wide-open spaces UPA-1Ps. “It’s a very capable box,” said
changed from then to the present day. (albeit enclosed), the Royal Promenade, Vlassopulos, “and works beautifully
The ships I worked on then, you could presented challenges in acoustics and with Meyer’s new M-10 subwoofer,
fit into the Promenade on Oasis. But audio design similar to those of a large which they specifically designed for us.
it’s not just the sheer size: The enter- shopping mall atrium. This community Everybody’s problem in a large atrium
tainment technology packages we’re gathering space is three decks high space is getting the low end, and this
designing and installing are light years with 18 passenger cabins overlooking is absolutely perfect. It works ideally
beyond what cruise ships used to have. it, and lined with shops and restaurants                       (continued on page 100)

                                                                                                             March 2010   63
(Continued from 63)
for the bulk of the day in background      UP-4XP ver y well.”                           using the BSS London DSPs, you can
music. It is much richer and more pres-      The new M-10 subwoofer is now a             zone off the Promenade to have one
ent than other types of ambient sound      part of Meyer’s standard line. In fact,       kind of event at one end and something
delivery, and excellent for parades and    “we saw how versatile it could be, so         completely different at the other, and
so forth. It has much more power than      we ended up creating three versions           the sound doesn’t bleed too much.”
we would ever need.”                       with different power schemes,” said              The Promenade gear also includes
  According to Pablo Richardson of         Richardson.                                   what Vlassopulos referred to as a “vast
Meyer Sound, the company had already                                                     array of DSPs. Ever y box is fully con-
been contemplating the subwoofer’s         Multiple Use                                  trolled,” he noted. “We spend as much
creation, to pair with one of its small-      “You’d never know, walking through         time as necessar y to program the lo-
est speakers, the 4"x4"x6" self-powered    the Promenade, that it is equipped for        cation for all different events.” A fea-
version of the MM-4XP launched three       all kinds of shows—live music, re-            ture of the fully equipped sound and
years ago. Royal Caribbean’s inquir y      corded music, background music and            lighting is the Yamaha DM2000 sound
provided the catalyst. “They had spe-      so forth—because you don’t see any            console. “The DM2000 is fully loaded,”
cific requirements in order to be able      of the gear except a few moving light         said Vlassopulos. “We have used them
to conceal the subwoofers in the lamp      instruments,” remarked FUNA’s War-            historically in bigger to medium-sized
posts,” said Richardson. “We value         ner. “But it can transform via audio and      spaces, and most of our techs are com-
our relationship with the cruise ship      lighting into a full-on entertainment         fortable with them and can readily go
industr y and with FUNA, and were          venue. The audio ended up exceeding           from one space to another. We have
happy to collaborate with them to de-      anyone’s expectations.                        another DM2000 in Studio B, the ship’s
velop this solution. We already had           “With the 42 speakers hidden in the        ice skating rink, and fleet-wide we have
some ideas, and it wasn’t an isolated      ceiling, and the 13 subwoofers hidden         them in the majority of theaters.”
job. Our speakers are ever ywhere on       in the bases of the streetlamps, they            Also in the control booth is a Meyer
Oasis except the Aqua-Theater, and         can turn that venue into a long stage         LCS system, on which the audio re-
the new subwoofer is being used in at      with the system providing even audio          sides. “FUNA provided enough equip-
least three ships. It complements the      quality from one end to the other. And        ment for a decent-sized theater in the

100 Sound & Communications                          To email, print or create a PDF of this page, go to
Promenade,” said Vlassopulos. There         audio via CobraNet and BSS London            thing is going to be streaming across
are several locations where you can         digital signal processors to ever y en-      some kind of IP network. It brings in a
set up a band, with monitors, an Aviom      tertainment venue and public area on         new level of system management and
personal mixing system for the per-         the ship.                                    system backup, with an incredible flex-
formers and Shure wireless all over           Some venues also use the network as        ibility in the ability to commission, pro-
for microphones. There is one proper        a time server to schedule their lighting     gram and manage systems.”
bandstand above the Cupcake Cup-            control systems. It also functions on the      Warner added, “With the right per-
board, on the roof, and there are two       AMX control platform to take charge of       missions, a technician can hop on the
other input panels, both on deck six:       the myriad screens and audio systems         network from almost any venue in the
one at the forward end and the other at     throughout the ship for mustering and        ship, with a laptop or PC. All these
the aft, where you can set up a quartet,    general announcements. At the push of        music channels can be managed by
a DJ event or other combination.”           a button from the bridge, the network        a broadcast technician in the central
                                            will automatically mute all entertainment    broadcast room and programmed on-
Sound Containment                           loudspeakers in favor of the ship-wide       site in conjunction with the onboard
   Sound containment and acoustical         PA system (provided by Audico), and          staff and the cruise directors.” (Think-
treatment are important in the Prom-        replace whatever is playing on the lo-       ing about land-based projects that have
enade. The area is sky lit and com-         cal entertainment screens, digital signs     also used their networks to allow the
pletely enclosed, with the entrance to      and stateroom televisions with the des-      integrator to provide remote system
the Opal Theater at one end, and the        ignated message content. The system          support and updating, all the pieces ap-
entrance to the Boardwalk, where the        also triggers additional screens, stowed     pear to be in place for Royal Caribbean
Aqua-Theater lives, at the other, and in    for such occasions, to drop down from        to take a similar step with Oasis.)
proximity to many cabins. “Cabins are       locations in the Royal Promenade and           FUNA’s LAN network is intertwined
ever ywhere except below,” said Vlas-       outside the comedy club.                     with a digital signage network to create
sopulos. “But we have never had any           Warner portrayed the network as a          a comprehensive audiovisual deliver y
complaints of noise, because they are       game-changer: a necessity for a mod-         system that serves a range of functions.
well insulated. Of course, if there is a    ern cruise ship of this size, but also an    “This required close coordination with
ver y big party or it is New Year’s Eve,    element of infrastructure that increas-      Royal Caribbean and with Four Winds
it will get a little louder than normal.”   ingly will be adopted for all types of       Interactive (www.fourwindsinteractive.
   Under Royal Caribbean’s direction,       projects. “We recognized early on in         com), which provided the media play-
FUNA worked with Atkins Global              the planning of the ship that we could       ers and content for the digital signage,”
(UK), one of several architects con-        not accomplish what was being asked          said Warner.
tributing to the Promenade mix, for a       without that network,” he said. “It was
design of the ceiling and skylights to      required for music systems, for control,
create surface areas that discourage        for safety, for overall management of        Shipboard
excessive sound reflection. “FUNA           the complex technology that we were          Digital Signage
talked to all the architects,” said Vlas-   being asked to integrate.”                     Ronnie Farzad was Royal Caribbean’s
sopulos, “to make sure that what they         As its planning progressed, the net-       Project Manager in developing the digi-
were doing worked for the sound and         work grew. More IP controllable de-          tal signage system for Oasis. They saw
lighting. There is a tile floor but, for-   vices were added, and the size of the        the new system as an opportunity to
tunately, the space is rarely completely    ship raised cable-length issues, neces-      enhance the guest experience with a
empty. There are portable carts and         sitating the use of fiberoptics between      progression of content over the course
other things that move in and out, and      switches. “It was an eye opener as to        of the cruise that includes notifications
people walking through, and all that        how big the ship really is that standard     of events and activities, in addition
mitigates sound reflection.”                network cables were much too short,”         to maps and directions and the daily
                                            said Warner.                                 newsletter. “They allow guests to find
Perform Key Duties                                                                       any venue in the ship and, the more
  “The technology we have integrated        Sub-Networks                                 time they spend in public areas, the
on the ship has increased the crew’s           Activation of the muster stations is      more chances we have to wow them.”
ability to perform their duties,” said      dependent on this network. There are         Guests use this information system
FUNA’s Warner, referring to the pro-        sub-networks and VLANS within it:            heavily during the first couple of days
prietar y LAN network FUNA custom           “The show control networks for the           on the cruise to get oriented and, after
built for Oasis. This ship-wide, fiber-     Aqua-Theater, the Opal Theater and           that, turn to it automatically, according
optic, 24-channel audio and control         all the major entertainment venues on        to Farzad. “Most of what the system
network is an essential entertainment       the ship all tie in,” Warner noted. “It is   does is anticipate guests’ needs. It’s
and control backbone. From a central        also ver y important in terms of engi-       a dynamic system, with the ability to
programming location in the broadcast       neering for future enhancements and          adapt.”
room, it streams background music           improvements. Down the road, ever y-           Some 300 video displays on the ship

                                                                                                                  March 2010 101
oAsis of the seAs
are part of the digital signage network.     proper techniques and install practices       space requirements in buildings and
These include 36 interactive displays        vs. a one-off or temporary version. We        developers want to consolidate to a
in the form of large-screen Samsung          tr y to blend those two things so we          smaller footprint,” said Stull. “Leading
vertical portraits at each elevator bank.    can get the system installed correctly        with such things as the employment
They help people figure out what is go-      to hold up to the hard conditions, and        of LEDs and other low-power, low-heat
ing on in the different venues, find their   serve the needs of the group of people        components, ships set an example of
rooms, determine which restaurants are       who will come in and run it. We tr y          how to build in cost savings all the way
full and which are not, and display a        to have both creative people and tech         down the line.”
map to get to a desired location.            people on the design staff: to use both
   “They have replaced god-knows-how-        sides of the brain.”
many man hours,” said Farzad. An ad-            On Oasis, FUNA’s initial design team       Entertainment
ditional 45 “guest guidance” screens         was led by Marc Goossens, who has             Complex Model
assist the embarkation process and           an electrical engineering background.            As a model for entertainment com-
traffic guidance, with some 20 differ-       Goossens was assisted by Derek War-           plexes, Stull added, “the ship is 24/7,
ent scenarios. These are controlled by       ner and Senior Technician Andy Clem-          multipurpose and multi-use, running 12
an interactive touchpad mounted on           ent. As the project transitioned from         hours a day or more. You need things
the wall as well as by a web-based ap-       conceptual design to supply contract,         compact and reliable. You have to have
plication accessible on crewmembers’         Warner headed the team for detailed           safety compliance.” People flow is an-
iPhones. Other screens function as           engineering from FUNA’s Finland of-           other finely honed art on a well-run
theater marquees, displaying the event       fices (the shipyard that built Oasis is       cruise ship: Oasis of the Seas can have
poster as well as the show schedule. In      in Finland, as well). Stull noted that        more than 6000 people moving among
the Royal Promenade, a London clock          FUNA tends to put together its com-           its multiple entertainment venues.
tower in the center of the space has         missioning teams out of live theater and         Stull feels that land-based projects
four screens integrated. Other screens       hire its engineers from Europe, where         would also benefit by obser ving the
are integrated in the various venues         there are strong vocational programs          planning phases of marine-based
and customer ser vice kiosks.                (140-plus employees in Europe).               jobs. “On land, many times, the plan-
   There are 10 muster stations around                                                     ning phases are not given enough time
the ship, including the major entertain-     Huge Crossover                                and emphasis.” He emphasized that
ment venues, used for general safety            Stull sees a “huge crossover” be-          “because ships are cutting steel ver y
briefings, emergency passenger mobi-         tween cruise ships and land-based             early in the process, architectural coor-
lization and ship-wide announcements.        projects today. “Oasis has its Royal          dination and integration, the process of
In the Royal Promenade, five addition-       Promenade, carousel, comedy clubs,            defining your scope, and planning your
al screens stowed in the ceiling drop        restaurants, theaters and large themed        systems” are more thorough. “Ships
down exclusively for mustering situa-        entertainment spaces. Today’s leaders         are forced into that because there’s
tions. The high-fidelity nature of the       in the cruise ship industr y are taking       not a lot of room to miss. Apply those
system makes even the safety briefings       the entire concept of themed enter-           processes to land and people will see
a compelling part of the guest experi-       tainment environments and applying            much greater impact for the money
ence. “It lets them know the cruise ex-      them.” The crossover also manifests           they spend.”
perience has begun, and they applaud,”       in personnel: Numerous senior FUNA               He also advises taking a harder look
obser ved Farzad.                            employees have backgrounds in the-            at the long-term footprint of a project.
                                             ater, at major theme parks and Las            “The final piece would be people wor-
                                             Vegas resorts.                                r ying about things like usage costs. A
Marine-Land                                     The family market is another parallel.     lot of times, it seems cheaper to put
Industry Crossover                           “What we are seeing now is demand for         in an incandescent light bulb, but look
  FUNA President Rex Stull has a             a more active vacation by families, and       at the life of the project down to its
background in live audio, touring as         a younger crowd. Oasis has a 28,700-          environmental impact, and the life-
a sound engineer with Broadway pro-          square-foot Youth Zone with areas for         time costs of the product vs. the initial
ductions and concerts. He had his first      four separate age groups: teen clubs,         startup costs. That’s something cruise
taste of working on a ship in New York       outdoor teen areas, more than 50 child        lines do because they know their single
City, mixing for headline entertain-         counselors on the ship, plus zip lines,       biggest expense is fuel.”
ers on cruises to Bermuda, and then          rock climbing, surfing machines....En-           Isn’t that true of all projects on
worked his way up to being a project         tire families take these cruises.”            Cruise Ship Earth?                     n
manager for installations. “A core thing        In terms of building culture, “The
for making a cruise ship work is to          cruise ship can be the model for the          This article is available to download, print and
come at it from both sides: balancing        new lean and mean green building age,         share at the new www.soundandcommunica
the issues of permanent installation,        now that they are starting to rein in

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