The above Ad will no longer appear after you Sign Up for Free!

Drop fabric that is visibly opaque but acoustically transparent

Discussion in 'Multimedia, Projection, and Show Control' started by Steerpike, Dec 5, 2018 at 12:10 PM.

  1. Steerpike

    Steerpike Member

    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Saint Louis, Missouri, United State
    We're doing a production of "Ragtime" in which we're putting the orchestra upstage of the scenery so we can leave the pit covered and bring the singers/dancers cloesr to the audience. I need to hang a drop downstage of the orchestra (upstage of the set) that I can front-project onto, as well as hitting it with some cyc lights. Does anyone have a recommendation for a fabric to use that is visually opaque (projections won't bleed through onto the orchestra and orchestra lights won't visibly show through the drop to the audience) but acoustically transparent. I don't have the equipment or rental budget to fully mic the orchestra, so I need the live feed in the house.

    Thanks!
     
    RonHebbard likes this.
  2. Amiers

    Amiers Lighting Phoenix 1 Lamp at a Time

    Messages:
    2,806
    Likes Received:
    829
    Location:
    Phoenix, Az
    Such a puzzle.

    I would say some sort of scrim Or 2 scrims double up.
     
    RonHebbard and Steerpike like this.
  3. macsound

    macsound Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    165
    Likes Received:
    128
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Even though it's not completely acoustically transparent, any loose woven, plain weave or stretch fabric won't have significant absorption or diffusion of the sound of your orchestra, and should be more physically resilient than scrim or cyc material.
    And assuming your orchestra is good at self balancing, a couple of overhead mics would be sufficient at making up the presence lost by the 40ish feet they're further away from the audience. You will have some time alignment issues, however.
     
    RonHebbard and Steerpike like this.
  4. danTt

    danTt Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    595
    Likes Received:
    223
    Occupation:
    Master Electrician
    Location:
    NY
    There are microperforated projection screen/surfaces, I know Gerrits makes them. My assumption however is that the cost of a microperf drop is going to be about the same price as the cost of renting enough mics to amplify the orchestra.
     
    RonHebbard and ruinexplorer like this.
  5. MNicolai

    MNicolai Well-Known Member Fight Leukemia

    Messages:
    3,148
    Likes Received:
    1,182
    Occupation:
    Consultant
    Location:
    Sarasota, FL
    This is probably the best solution. If in doubt, shove a monitor speaker where the orchestra would be and test it out. You shouldn't need a lot of level from the overhead mic's but you will have some mid/high-frequency you'll want to compensate for that'll get lost in the fabric.

    Most digital sound consoles have delay built into them. In this case, you would want to send all the pit orchestra mic's to a mix buss, drop an effects module in on that mix buss to add 20-60ms of delay until the acoustic sound of the drum kit is matched up with the amplified sound coming out of the PA.

    Please be mindful: Many consoles also have "Input Delay", where you can delay individual channels as soon as they arrive in the console. At first glance it may seem like this solves your problem but if you are putting drums or anything percussive into foldback monitors for the pit orchestra or the singers you will discover everyone losing their rhythm when their stage monitors are delayed +40ms from the instrumentalist 10' away from them. Input delay affects the signal anywhere/everywhere that channel goes. You only want to delay the pit orchestra in the feed that goes to the mains -- not in any stage monitors.
     
    Steerpike and RonHebbard like this.
  6. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

    Messages:
    5,951
    Likes Received:
    1,302
    Occupation:
    Project Manager, Stagecraft Industries, Inc.
    Location:
    Portland, Or.
    30 denier or heavier Tricot. If it's not stretched too tightly it's translucent without being transparent. It is damn-near acoustically invisible.
     
    Steerpike and RonHebbard like this.
  7. tladuke

    tladuke Member

    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    15
    Location:
    Orange County California
    Both Rose Brand and Dazians offer the "Janus" line of IFR rated polyester scenic fabrics. They are acoustically transparent. We have had our acoustic engineer measure this fabric and it works very well in our applications. It comes in several colors including a few grays that work well for video projection. It is not 100% opaque.
     
    RonHebbard likes this.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice