|Type||Professional Audio Manufacturer|
|Key people||Christian Heil, Founder|
|Products||Loudspeakers, Amplifier/Signal Processing|
L-ACOUSTICS is a French manufacturer of loudspeakers, amplifiers and signal processing devices for rental and installed sound markets. Headquartered in Marcoussis, just south of Paris, the company has satellite operations in the United States, United Kingdom and Germany, as well as a global Rental Network of production companies deploying and cross-renting its products.
In September 1984, Dr. Christian Heil, a physicist in the field of elementary particles with a passion for sound, created an electro-acoustic engineering firm named C.HEIL.TEA, later to be renamed L-ACOUSTICS. In 1989, the company launched its MTD115, a high-performance coaxial loudspeaker for sound reinforcement use.
In 1993, Heil and his team pioneered the field of modern line source array loudspeakers with their V-DOSC system, which benefitted from L-ACOUSTICS’ new Wavefront Sculpture Technology (WST) theory. Based on principles developed by Heil and fellow physics colleague Professor Marcel Urban, WST defined five criteria for design and use of true line source arrays. At the heart of WST is the internationally-patented DOSC waveguide, which was the first high-frequency device capable of creating a rectangular, constant-phase planar output.
In combination with WST, coplanar symmetry - the equivalent of coaxial assembly for HF, MF and LF drivers in vertical arrays - provides a coherent wavefront over the entire horizontal coverage at all frequencies. This behaves as if the sound was radiated by a single, continuous and articulated ribbon, and allows a highly coherent sonic signature in long throw applications, beyond the limits of previously traditional clustered systems.
Although Heil did not invent the underlying theory of the line array, his research and design work that ultimately resulted in the V-DOSC system altered the landscape of loudspeaker design. Today, nearly every professional audio loudspeaker manufacturer has adopted the line array model for their premier touring systems, and Heil is generally recognized as the "father of the modern line array."
Over the years, L-ACOUSTICS has gone on to introduce other products, including the ARCS Constant Curvature Array (1995), dV-DOSC modular line source (1999), KUDO with K-LOUVER variable directivity (2005), P Series self-powered coaxials (2006), SB28 subwoofer with laminar vents and LA4 and LA8 amplified controllers (2007). The debut of L-ACOUSTICS’ SOUNDVISION simulation software in 2004 enabled system designers to create accurate 3D acoustical models of potential systems using the company’s products.
In 2008, 15 years after the launch of V-DOSC, L-ACOUSTICS introduced its newest flagship system known as K1, designed primarily for large festivals and stadia sound reinforcement applications. Distribution of the earliest K1 systems sold was extremely limited to a small number of touring sound companies that agreed to participate in the manufacturer’s K1/KUDO Pilot Program, providing feedback to L-ACOUSTICS’ R&D team on its field performance.
Since then, the manufacturer has established both its new Rental Network and System Integration Charter, as well as debuted other new products, including the KARA and KARAi WST line source enclosures and SB18 and SB18i subwoofers (2010).
The K1 stadium line array system was recognized with the top prize for "Indispensable Technology - Audio" at the 10th annual Parnelli Awards ceremony held at the Rio All Suites Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas on October 22, 2010.
- 1984: Physicist Dr. Heil founds L-ACOUSTICS
- 1989: First coaxial system MTD115/LLC
- 1992: Wavefront Sculpture Technology (WST)
- 1994: V-DOSC and Network
- 1995: ARCS Constant Curvature Array
- 1999: dV-DOSC modular line source
- 2004: SOUNDVISION simulation software
- 2005: KUDO and K-LOUVER variable directivity
- 2006: P Series self-powered coaxials
- 2007: Amplified controllers, SB28 laminar vents
- 2008: K1/KUDO pilot program
- 2009: New Rental Network
- 2010: KARA, SB18 (laminar vent), System Integration Charter
- 2011: ARCS II constant curvature line source
- 2012: ARCS WIDE and ARCS FOCUS constant curvature line sources
Current Products (as of June 2012)
- Amplified Controllers
- LA4, LA4X, LA8, LA-RAK
- Coaxial Systems
- XTi Series: 8XTi, 12XTi
- XT Series: 5XT, 8XT, 12XT, 115XT HiQ
- P Series: 108P, 112P, SB15
- Line Source Systems
- Medium Format: ARCS II, ARCS WIDE, ARCS FOCUS
- Modular: KARA, KARAi, KIVA, KILO
- Large Format: KUDO, K2, V-DOSC, K1, K1-SB
- SB15m, SB18, SB18i, SB18m, SB28
- LA Network Manager 2
- Tech Toolcase
- Sound Field Radiated By Arrayed Multiple Sound Sources, AES Convention Paper #3269. Article presented at the 92nd AES Convention, Vienna 1992
- Wavefront Sculpture Technology, AES Journal, October 2003
- The Birth of the Array: Part 03, Filter 06, July 2005 http://gtaust.com/filter/06/08.shtml
- Interview: Christian Heil, Founder of L-ACOUSTICS, France - The Father of Modern Line Array Speaker Systems, Audio Pro International, November 2004 http://www.garycooper.biz/articles/interviews0411-1.html
- From V-DOSC to K1: L-ACOUSTICS Enters Its Next Phase, Total Production International, September 2008 http://www.tpimagazine.com/supplier-directory/Sound/136271/from_vdosc_to_k1_lacoustics_enters_its_next_phase.html
- Audio Pro International, August 18, 2008 http://www.audioprointernational.com/news/668/L-Acoustics-K1KUDOLA8-programme-launched
- FOH, November 2010 http://www.fohonline.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=4485&Itemid=54