Aug08

Introducing our new favourite go-to high-end install amplifier platform!

Ottocanali Stack Glam

A few months ago, myself and Harry attended Powersoft’s training day hosted by CUK Audio at The Royal Society of Medicine in central London.

For quite a while I’ve been looking for a serious multi-channel install amplifier platform that combines a wide range of power ratings, extreme reliability, onboard DSP options, digital audio networking options AND doesn’t break the bank. It’s a tough bill to fill and on a lot of projects either price is too prohibitive or there just isn’t quite an amp in any given range that can develop the sort of power needed.

Quality audio installations can have diverse demands from equipment – you might have two lines of constant voltage ceiling speakers that need say 200W at 100V on a pair of the channels but then you may have another four channels that need to power a low impedance system for DJs or live music that require in excess of 800W per channel at 8 ohms.

Now I don’t like mix and match racks unless there’s a really good reason for it. Sometimes it’s a necessity but where possible its nice to have a uniform rack to avoid various issues... and because it looks much neater and allows for really uniform patching.

After spending the day digging around in the software processing side of Powersoft's newest line of install amplifiers we moved onto the specs of the whole range and this is where I started getting excited (sad I know). Pretty much there’s an amplifier within the platform for every instance I could think of. Not just that but there was also just about every connection option wanted including a few nice additions that in certain instances would allow a system designer like myself to build everything around the amp and not need any additional front-end control! Now that’s cool.

So, what are the downsides?

It’d be nice to have a four-channel offering with over 1500 watts output for live FOH systems where you’ve got some really hungry subs. A slightly quicker and more responsive software platform would be great too, although as it’s an install amp this really isn’t an issue after initial setup. And finally, I hate the square IEC power connections! Please, please, please can we have Neutrik Powercons!? Since we attended that training we’ve done several jobs using the Canali range and I’m over the moon with their performance. They sound clean and transparent, run calm and quiet and look superb. Keep an eye out for an upcoming case study from Mount Horeb Church in Eltham where they powered a really slick RCF Compact Series system... Also, we'll be uploading a quick report on the RCF speakers too.

Amplifier platform