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KV2 goes Modular in Emmental


The beautiful region of Emmental in Switzerland is doubtless better known for its famously holey cheese than for its music output; nevertheless, the gently rolling hills of Langnau provided a stunning backdrop for the first edition of the Modular Festival organised by DJ and producer, Michelle Kelly Leeman. For four days from 10-13 September, the lowing of cattle gave way to the sounds of psytrance and techno from an international roster of over 50 artists and DJs with music running non-stop across two stages. 

Michelle has been a fan of KV2 systems for a number of years, and was adamant that she wanted the very best for her festival – and so she opted for the flagship VHD5 system for the main stage and SL412s supplemented by SL2.15 subs for the second stage.

Festivals are difficult to organise at the best of times, but in the midst of an international pandemic, it becomes distinctly challenging as the goalposts are constantly moving. “It took over a year of planning and 160 pages of information were submitted to the relevant authorities in order to obtain all the necessary permissions to go ahead,” recalls Michelle. “Selecting a sound system was the easy bit – I already knew I wanted KV2, and if possible the VHD5 but I needed to make sure it was feasible.”

Michelle got in touch with KV2’s Technical Projects director, Andy Austin-Brown, with the details of her project to see what he suggested given the size and shape of the area to be covered and the dimensions of the stage. “VHD5 offers the absolute best quality of sound representation coupled with the highest dynamics and definition, even at lower levels, whilst carrying enormous output capability,” says Austin-Brown. “Given the area to be covered and the anticipated audience levels, we could certainly have achieved excellent results with a range of our smaller solutions, but Michelle had already decided that excellent wasn’t good enough – she wanted the absolute very best if it was possible, and that, in KV2 terms, as their current ultimate technology statement - means VHD5. Whilst not a typical application for VHD5, there was no reason for it not to be used, so that’s what we did.”

The biggest challenge was working within the 7.5m height restriction imposed by the tented roof structure in front of the stage. To combat this, the final configuration comprised a single VHD5.0 with three VHD8.10 midrange extensions per side flown as high as possible either side of the stage. Due to the lack of height, instead of using the dedicated downfill cabinets, Austin-Brown recommended a pair of ESR215s as front fill, supplemented by a ground-stacked sub array of 2x VHD2.21, 8x VHD4.21 Active and 6x VHD4.21 Passive that offers even, powerful sub bass across the entire listening space as well as excellent on-stage rejection.

DJ monitoring was handled by KV2’s classic setup of a pair of ES1.0 mid/tops, four ES2.6 double 15-inch active subs, with control and amplification provided by a pair of EPAK2500R and a SAC2 processor.

All the equipment was supplied by technical event production specialists, PISO AG based north-east of Zurich. They also provided a L/R SL dance stack for the second stage comprising an SL412 top, two SL2.15 subs and a VHD2.21 sub per side. Signal management, amplification and control across all KV2 systems was handled by KV2’s dedicated control and amplification units.

Johannes Kraemer, long-time sound engineer for techno legend Richie Hawtin, was on hand to help set up the VHD5 system. “I couldn’t be happier with how it all turned out,” says Michelle. “The sound was simply incredible with a depth and clarity that you just don’t get with other systems. We had two other festivals who showed interest in our sound system and at least three artists who asked for KV2’s details – I think that pretty much speaks for itself! We had a great turnout for the first edition of the Modular Festival, and I’m already looking forward to next year, which will be bigger and better again!”

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System setup:

Main Floor (per side)

  • VHD5.0
  • 3x VHD8.10 (no downfill)
  • ESR215 as frontfill
  • 2x VHD2.21
  • 8x VHD4.21 Active 
  • 6x VHD4.21 Passive
    (Sub Array Configuration C but only L4/R4 with Delay 1,5ms)

Signal management

  • 2x VHD5000
  • 2x VHD5000S
  • 1x ESR3000
  • 1x SDD3

DJ Monitoring

  • 2x ES1.0
  • 4x ES2.6
  • 2x EPAK2500R
  • 1x SAC2

Second Floor (per side)

  • 1x VHD2.21
  • 2x SL2.15
  • 1x SL412 

Signal management

  • 1x SAC2
  • 1x SL3000
  • 3x VHD3200

DJ Monitoring

  • 2x ES1.0
  • 4x ES2.6
  • 2x EPAK2500R
  • 1x SAC2



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