"We’re really thrilled, slightly stunned and very proud that it works so well. I truly believe that the sound quality, dispersion, and clarity delivered by XSL will spearhead the evolution that we all expect from smaller arrays in the future."
XSL delivers cardioid performance across the full frequency spectrum, resulting in reduced audio spill onto open mics on stage; enhanced clarity and impact of individual instruments; and less coloration of mid-range build up in venues and on broadcast and recording feeds.
Furthermore, XSL loudspeakers deliver broadband directivity using patented SL-Series cardioid techniques to control low frequency dispersion. The XSL System’s sonic performance and is achieved via this unique pattern control and enhanced with d&b Enabling technologies such as d&b ArrayProcessing.
Meanwhile, the d&b amplifier family, including the 40D installation and D40 mobile amplifiers, have been designed to provide the power density required for high efficiency d&b systems. The four-channel Class D 40D/D40 devices come with advanced voltage management to bring up to 50% power draw efficiency to the d&b range.
The XSLi installation systems, along with the installation specific 40D amplifier, will begin shipping in October. The mobile XSL package will begin shipping in January 2022.
Here, Bayer and Christner open up on what the final addition to the SL-Series means for the pro audio market...
What does the new product range add to the SL-Series?
WB: The new d&b XSL System scales the industry-leading features of the SL-Series — outstanding broadband directivity control and extended low frequency performance, to comprehensive rigging, cabling and transportation solutions — into a smaller, lighter-weight, more energy-efficient package to suit an even border range of segments and applications.
Has the company seen higher demand for more compact products since the start of the pandemic?
WB: I would say that flexibility and scalability have been even more important to our customers since the pandemic. With the XSL Series we are able to provide our installation customers with broadband directivity control to drastically improve the ratio of direct-to-reverberant sound in acoustically critical spaces. For our mobile customers, the XSL offers a smaller, lighter weight footprint and improved sonic performance.
Are there any new markets you'll be looking to target with the new range?
WB: The XSL is so versatile that it will be a good fit in a broad range of markets, from HoW, corporate, stadiums, performance venues you name it, the XSL will bring the quality and power. Also because we have installation specific and mobile touring variants available, there is no limit to where the XSL can provide value.
Are there any particular applications or settings that you see being an especially good fit for these products?
WB: XSLi for permanent installations, is ideally suited to venues with a high dependency on the clarity of spoken word, and with the need for a high power, full spectrum performance. The XSL mobile version addresses the needs of the broadest range of touring applications. Both XSL and XSLi can be deployed as a stand-alone, self-contained package, or as a delay, or fill system to accompany its GSL and KSL siblings.
How challenging was it to fit the capabilities of this range into such compact dimensions?
MC: It was definitely challenging. As always at d&b, we set out to achieve the impossible and in this case we wanted to achieve more SL. In other words we need to replicate the entire feature set of the SL- Series in a compact package. We were all skeptical as to whether we could capture the power of the SL- Series in a lighter-weight form without compromise but our R&D department is unwavering in their commitments.
A certain minimum size is needed to provide the proper acoustic path length around the cabinet in order for the cardioid low frequency control to work so we needed to get it just right and after many years of research and endless testing, we are finally ready to bring this game changer to the market.
What sets this range apart from the competition?
MC: Only d&b has the broadband directivity control and varying bandwidth capabilities in a package of this size. The performance-to-size ratio of the XSL System is unlike anything currently available. Not to mention the fact that the holistic d&b Workflow delivers significant advantages, especially when considering the enabling technologies.
From planning with ArrayCalc to OCA remote control by R1, System check, Array verification, ArraySight, ArrayProcessing and NoizCalc; the range provides a very complete and unmatched feature set to the installation and mobile, pro-audio markets.
Headliner recently spoke to d&b audiotechnik CEO Amnon Harman about the future of the pro audio industry, market trends and his ongoing plans to diversify the company’s operations. You can read our exclusive interview here.