Lido Cinema, New Zealand

The Opportunity

Established in the 1920s, the Lido Cinema is one of New Zealand’s oldest and most prestigious cinemas. Originally opened as a single-screen art house cinema, the Lido expanded with a second 44-seat capacity theater known as The Lounge in 2005. The Lido recently decided to upgrade the aging 5.1 sound system in The Lounge to a state-of-the-art 7.1 surround sound system. Unable to place speakers behind the screen due to the rear-projection system in the Lounge, Lido Cinema recruited the help of AV integrators Avid Automation and JBL distributor JPRO to install a custom solution capable of delivering a more immersive movie-going experience.

The Solution

Avid Automation and JPRO equipped The Lounge with class-leading JBL 708i reference monitors in the left, center and right channels in a bi-amplified configuration. JBL 708i monitors use Image Control WaveGuide and Next Generation Driver Technology to deliver crystal-clear sound with even, balanced coverage. The smaller JBL 705i reference monitors are used as surround speakers to create a truly immersive listening experience. Avid Automation and JPRO designed custom JBL subwoofers to deliver smooth, powerful low-end during intense action scenes. The system is powered by Crown CDi 4|300 amplifiers, which feature advanced digital signal processing to ensure pristine sound in any environment. Equipped with DriveCore technology, CDi amps include JBL speaker tuning presets for quick and easy installation.

The Impact

“It’s always been a bit of a troublesome venue for speaker placement due to the rear-projection screen,” said Richard Dalton, Managing Director, Lido Cinema. “We’ve had about three sound systems in there since it opened, and none of them have been particularly good. The idea of working with the AV integrator and JBL to create a custom solution was rather exciting. The amazing work in The Lounge has exceeded my expectations with a premium audio result—I love it.”

“Due to the layout requirement of the venue and the rear-projection screen, I quickly realized that the image control waveguide of the JBL 7 Series monitors would be a perfect solution for the cinema,” said Paul Edlin, Designer and Sales Director, JPRO AVC. “The waveguide allows for a much wider sweet spot and greater accuracy in the audio spectrum for room-to-room consistency, especially in the critical dialogue range.”