Lawo, in The Grand Tour’s driving seat
Screened on Amazon Prime, the first episode of The Grand Tour is reportedly the streaming site’s biggest premiere to date. United has placed Lawo in the driving seat. The series is being shot as a multi-camera 4K HDR production at the 23.98 frame rate, as it is being aired in the US.
“United has a track record in 4K and HDR filming, including live concerts by Muse and U2, so this was the main reason we got this job”, has explained sound supervisor Huub Lelieveld, who mixes the recordings along with Rob Ashard and Mischa Kortleve. “For audio, I and my colleague Christian Postma wanted to match the high-resolution video by creating the best audio quality possible”.
“In audio recording, there is no direct equivalent to 4K – the audio is still 48kHz. We wanted to match the picture by creating an audio setup that is completely without compromise – but to be as compact as possible, as everything is flying around the globe”, has said Lelieveld.
“We held a little brainstorm, and concluded that this meant using the best possible compact audio console for both recording and FOH. For us, there was no question about choosing a Lawo mc²36. I use Lawo consoles daily – as I do other brands of broadcast consoles – and, for me, they are the best choice for functionality, sound quality and reliability”.
United’s requirements for The Grand Tour have resulted in the selection of a 16-fader Lawo mc²36 for FOH, manned by Martijn Kuiper, and a second, 24-fader, mc²36 for the OB gallery that is located in another tent. “We connect one Lawo Compact Stagebox using RAVENNA, and the two consoles are connected digitally using the MADI port on the Compact Stagebox. All I/O is shared between the two Lawos”, has explained Lelieveld.
“The three presenters wear omni lavalier mics and are in a tent with the audience with a PA that, as always, needs to be as loud as possible to make sure the audience hears, and reacts to the comedy. To get a direct and dry sound, we use Lawo Automix and Cedar Audio DNS8 noise reduction at both OB and FOH. I experimented quite a bit to get a dry as possible sound from the Automix, and found that maximum drive at every channel and a short (25ms) release worked very well to get quite extreme Automixing”, has concluded.
For more information: www.lawo.com.