tannoy1D-Tools MVP Tannoy contributed this interesting install at the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribes Longhouse Market and Deli.

Featuring views of Sequim Bay, three large totem poles, and a wooden post and beam interior with stone accents reminiscent of the northwest’s rugged landscape, the look emphasizes the traditional, but the Longhouse Market and Deli is a decidedly cutting edge take on the traditional tribal store.

“It’s like a gas station on steroids,” says lead designer, Kevin Hill, of Tukwila, WA based, Triamp Group, the firm responsible for the design and install of the market’s A/V architecture. “I’ve been all over the United States and I’ve never seen a gas station, or a country market, like this.”

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Servicing a large section of Highway 101, near Sequim, Washington, since its Spring 2008 grand opening, the Longhouse has acted as an entry point to the nearby 7 Cedars Resort and Casino. With multiple digital signage displays and 17 LCD screens, including 12 40″ Sony Portrait HD LCD screens figuring prominently in the market, making the technology completely disappear was never an option. “The screens give it a kind of a Las Vegas twist – you don’t see that in a normal convenience store setting,” says Longhouse General Manager, Randy Lemon. Still, aesthetics were of key importance to Triamp’s clients, the Jamestown S’Klallam tribe, owners and operators of 7 Cedars. Specifically, maintaining the look and the integrity of the architectural design, with its emphasis on the tribe’s unique culture, without compromising the facilities’ functionality. Essentially embracing the 11,000 square foot facilities’ technological edge, while minimizing the visual footprint of the sound system.

The challenge, Hill explains, was to provide adequate coverage and intelligible sound to all parts of the interior without drawing attention to the sound sources. “It was very important to the client that the speakers weren’t standing out like warts on the side of the wood,” he says. Integral to the look of the building are massive faux logs, roughly 5′ diameter, that run the length of the building’s interior. While much of the cabling for the install – HVAC, power, data and video – was run within these beams and within floor to ceiling wooden columns of similar design, the open architecture precluded the use of ceiling mount speakers.

As a solution, Hill chose Tannoy’s compact, surface mount, Di-5T speakers, exclusively, to provide consistent background music in and around the store; at the front entry, within the Market and the Harvest Deli, Raven Wine and Spirits, as well as at the exterior gas bar and restrooms. In all, 35 Di-5T’s are distributed among seven discreet zones, controlled via an AMX audio/video routing system, incorporating 5″ Widescreen NXD-CV5 Color Touch Panels. In the main market, using the provided multi position brackets, the Triamp team mounted the Di-5T’s on top of the beams, effectively hiding them, while positioning them for maximum coverage, so the tweeter pattern would still get through and out onto the floor. With the Di-5T’s color matched to the wood, and sitting at roughly 14′ above the floor, “if you’re not looking directly at them, you’re not going to see them,” Lemon adds.

Outside, aesthetics were less critical. The primary concerns being clarity, sound quality, and durability in the face of the Northwest’s predictably inclement weather. All aspects of the Di-5T’s construction, from the enclosure to the Tannoy ICT drive unit, are tailored to applications where constant usage requires rock solid reliability. “It’s just a pretty harsh climate, and they’re a good, universal, all weather box that I could use indoors and outdoors,” Hill says.

Even in the face of the ambient noise of a busy gas station the Di-5T’s deliver. “The sonic quality was really good,” says Hill. “We did some A/B comparisons against some competitors and for the price point, ease of use and installation, this was definitely a standout speaker.” Randy Lemon concurs; “Even with cars running, out at the fuel station it’s very clear. It probably sounds as good, outside, under the fuel canopy, as it would in your car.”

For more information please visit www.tcgroup-americas.com.