An AV Design and Installation story …

It is not often PLS has the opportunity to deliver both design and implementation of Performance Space AV Systems from the ground up, but for Mitchelton State High School’s recent Multi-purpose Hall Refurbishment Project, this was happily the case.   From joint AV Consultants in Brisbane, working with GL Audio and the Education Department’s Design Team, to AV Installers … and loving it!

Planning considerations can be broken down into two main areas of focus …

  1. AV Infrastructure – The somewhat boring, but vitally important base to build AV systems on
  2. AV Equipment – The razzle dazzle of technology with all the bells and whistles

Three aspects of AV infrastructure that have delivered great outcomes …

Rigging & Power Systems –  These old-style school sports halls were never designed with modern day AV infrastructure in mind.  But being part of the consulting team, we were able to negotiate a structural steel AV grid over the stage and fore-stage areas from which AV equipment can be safely suspended in ideal positions. Two 16m lengths of Global Tri-Truss off the FOH grid provide that industrial “entertainment-style” look and front lighting positions for the stage and forestage. Four Lighting Bars over-stage provide excellent positioning options stage lights.


Power infrastructure design for AV setup on this Mitchelton project was both cost-effective and simple. With the advent of LED stage lighting in recent years, traditional power-hungry three-phase theatrical dimming and complex patching systems are no longer required in many school settings.

Venue Layout – Whilst being restricted by the existing building structure, a truly versatile performance space has been achieved, with ..

    • A back-stage cross-over, facilitated via a new full-height “cyclorama wall” inset some 2metres from the back wall, providing a matt white, smooth, bare surface for cyclorama lighting washes, as well as projected images for powerful scene-setting. This is a maintenance friendly cyclorama solution.
    • A lockable stage-manager’s alcove (prompt side) houses the main AV equipment rack, plus a designated stage managers desk with comms, vision monitoring, back of house paging & audience recall, touch-pad systems controller, ready access to stage curtain draw cords, house-lighting controls and much more.
    • Five custom Dip Traps (floor boxes) positioned along the front and rear extremities of the stage, provide a multitude of on-stage patching options.
    • Back-Stage Blue light for safe movement in the back-stage areas.
    • An elevated Control Room in the front of house area, with a full-faced opening across the width (secured by roller shutter), allowing excellent sound penetration and vision lines to stage for technicians.
    • Under-stage change rooms and performer amenities have access to both the stage and external breezeway via back-stage stairs.
    • Equitable access for all to both the stage & control room.
    • Back-stage Roller Door Access for props and the like.


AV Cabling over Data – Cabling infrastructure is over a fully dedicated stand-alone AV Data Network, providing amazing flexibility for the school going forward and literally a plethora of patching options throughout the venue.

Now the fun stuff – the “Equipment”

Thankfully, the budget on this build was good, making it possible to deliver great outcomes.  In the Covid19 environment, it was not always possible to get our hands on exactly the gear we wanted, but in the end, the equipment mix delivered works extremely well in this space, the main components being…

Audio (delivered over Dante) …

  • BSS BLU-806DA Open Architecture Master Processor, with Dante
  • Electrovoice Loudspeakers
    • FOH: EVF-1122D94 Premium 12” 2way Full Range
    • Down-fill: EVU-208295 Dual 8” 2-way
    • Under-stage Sub: ETX-15SP Powered 15”
  • Acoustic Technologies SFM10 & SS18 Foldback Speakers
  • Power-soft Amplifiers
  • Soundcraft Si Impact Digital Console with Dante
  • Soundcraft Digital Stage Box 32in/12out
  • Shure QLXD Wireless Mics with Antenna Management & Rechargeable Batteries
  • Shure Lectern & Shotgun Microphones
  • S-Track Dante End Point Convertors
  • BSS Zone Controller
  • Audac & JBL Pendant Speakers – BGM, Back-stage Paging & Audience Recall
  • Jands Ezicom Talkback System (analog)

Control System …

  • RTI XP-8v Control Processor
  • RTI 7” Desktop & Wall-mount Touch-Screens (Stage & Control Room)
  • I-Pads (for portable Advanced User Controls – Stage Manager & Control Room)
  • Ubiquiti Network Switches, WAPS & Routers
  • I-Port Launch Sleeves & Base Stations for I-Pads
  • Furman Power Conditioners

Vision Gear …

  • Panasonic 8000 Ansilumen Laser Projectors – FOH
  • Epson 12000 Ansilumen Laser Projector – On-stage
  • PTZ Optics NDI Live Streaming Camera & IP Joystick Keyboard
  • JAP HDMI over Data Receivers & Transmitters
  • Multiple LG Commercial TVs / Displays for Show Monitoring

Stage Lighting Gear (LED Rig) …

  • Chamsys MagicQ PC Wing Control System
  • ACME DMX & Art-DMX Signal Processing
  • ACME Lighting Fixtures
    • Oxygen CM-400Z Moving Head Wash Zoom
    • Energy Spot Pro XA-400 Moving Head Profiles
  • ShowPro Lighting Fixtures
    • Dual Cell CYC101 Cyclorama Floods
    • 150w WW Static Fresnels with DMX Zoom & Barndoors
    • Truss-mate Truss Warmers
  • Chauvet DJ Lighting Fixtures
    • Intimidator Spot 375Z Moving Head – On Stage Specials
    • SlimPar Pro Hex Wash Lights
  • Look Unique Hazer 2.1

Stage Curtains & Masking …

  • Custom Design & installation by PLS incorporates
    • 3 sets of Centre Opening Tabs (FOH, Mid & Rear)
    • 4 pairs of Stage Legs, defining sides of performance area
    • 1 Valance and 3 Sky Borders, masking over-stage mechanics
  • Curtain Manufacture by Jands Venue Engineering
  • Jands Heavy Duty Hardware & Associated Tracking used

So to wrap up outcomes …

This old ugly duckling of a school hall has been transformed into a beautiful and efficient performance space by our Brisbane AV Team.  Push button technology and intelligent programming means AV systems can be operated by novice users for simple assemblies and presentations with ease, whilst still offering full control for more demanding events.  The AV over Data Network will deliver incredible flexibility to this Brisbane School for many years to come. All-in-all, a Brisbane School AV Project to be proud of.