We have all visited tourist attractions at some point, from theme parks, to ice rinks and from Stately homes to Zoos….All attractions, regardless of the theme, have one thing in common…
The Sound (PA) System is that one thing of course and this must remain discreet. It’s our job to make sure that not only is this achieved but also that the sound is intelligible, dynamic and helps create the overall atmosphere. Often in these attractions the sound system really does need to be heard and not seen!
The Tourist Attraction sector is one of the most interesting for us, because it’s so diverse, individualistic and fun!! From concept to design and installation, we like to get involved every step of the way and there is no better feeling than seeing the fruits of labour form part of the customer experience. A large majority of sound systems within tourist attractions are outdoors or in very humid conditions. Because of this we will specify speakers that have an Ingress Protection (I.P) rating. This is not just to protect against bad weather, but also solids, such as fine dust particles. We will always assess, evaluate and advise.
Often speakers are disguised to blend in to the surroundings. We’ve installed speakers that look like rocks, or large toadstools! Often when the sound needs to be more dynamic, almost “cinema – like”, sub woofers will be required. No one wants to see big black wooden boxes everywhere, so these are often encased to blend in. As I said earlier, getting involved in the concept is just as rewarding for us as listening to the end result.
Lighting & Effects Installations for Tourist Attractions
Microphones are often required for announcements. Paging microphones are the most popular and we usually install these linked to an automatic ‘ducking’ feature, which means that the announcer doesn’t have to worry about turning the music volume down to make an announcement. It does this automatically, and then returns to the required volume after the announcement. Likewise with links to fire alarms, often a recorded message is triggered. The music cuts, but the announcement doesn’t.
Effect lighting is also a big feature in many attractions, creating ambience with a variety of fixtures, from Colour Washes to Moving Heads and Atmospherics such as Haze / Smoke and Bubble Machines to Lasers. Many lighting fixtures also require to be I.P rated.
Projected Images also feature quite regularly, again, helping to piece together the story, through the ages, for example. Sound effects, often triggered by Infa Red sensors, played back on a USB player set to loop is another great feature that can be achieved.
These are all features that we often include and suggest as a standard requirement and not something that our customer may have thought about. That’s why we install public address systems and not run tourist attractions
”When this new attraction was first discussed within the marketing team, we thought it may be too expensive to do exactly what we wanted to do, especially creating at least 7 different audio/music files. We had visions of complex computers and technology that could possibly be beyond our capability. We told Mick at Music Gear Installations that it needed to be simple, on a budget! He came back and explained to us what he proposed, which was exactly what we wanted to hear, that it could be done quite simply without requiring a degree in music technology to operate it! The Music Gear team worked efficiently and clearly care about the way the conduct their business and completed the job on time. Excellent service from a very professional bunch of guys!Charlotte CobleyHead of Marketing for Belvoir Estates & Tourist Attractions