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PEL Services designs sound system for Business Design Centre

PEL Services Ltd. has completed the design, supply and commissioning of a Public Address (PA) and Voice Alarm (VA) system at London’s Business Design Centre.
Located in Islington, the Business Design Centre is one of London’s most popular conference and exhibition venues. It hosts over 300 events a year and provides a range of stylish, flexible and convenient spaces, from a main exhibition space through to a conference facility and smaller rooms.


The existing PA system, originally supplied by PEL well over 20 years ago, had served well but was due for replacement. Furthermore, the emergency evacuation system was based on sirens, which PEL has replaced by modern voice evacuation now considered best practice for venues of this nature.

With its variety of event spaces located throughout the Centre, plus the high ceilinged Main exhibition hall used for large exhibitions covering over 2,000 square metres and its surrounding 24 bay areas, the Business Design Centre is an acoustically challenging environment. PEL Services used CAD acoustic modelling to ensure the most effective system design for the different areas and predict the intelligibility (STI) of the system to comply with the relevant BS & EN Standards for safe and efficient evacuation.

At the heart of the new PA/VA system installed by PEL is a Bosch Praesideo digital system. Unlike traditional PA systems, Praesideo uses a network configuration rather than having all system elements connected to a central controller; this architecture gives real freedom in system design. The 'daisy-chain' network topology means system elements can be connected to virtually any point and any type of equipment to be located wherever most suitable in the building (e.g. power amplifiers closer to loudspeakers). What's more, by connecting the network ends together, a 'redundant' loop is created so any break in the cable doesn't affect operation - an important consideration in an emergency system.

The Praesideo system was specified by PEL to drive Bosch LBC 3210 XLA (Extended Listening Area) Line Array Loudspeakers in the main exhibition hall and entrance area. These speakers were considered ideal for this environment due to their ability to create a clear, fuller sound which is distributed more evenly over a wider area; their chic, slim design also made them an attractive addition. To extend coverage beyond the Main Hall System, the Gallery & Mezzanine Balcony Levels have been fitted with Bosch Ceiling Loudspeakers with Mounting Box and Suspension Kits.

The Conference Centre & Gallery Exhibition Hall have false ceilings throughout, so PEL fitted Bosch Ceiling Loudspeakers designed for this purpose, along with Fire Resistant Domes which isolate and protect speakers from a potential building fire.

For back of house areas, such as corridors, stairs and toilets that mainly have solid ceilings and walls, PEL was able to use standard Bosch Metal Cabinet Loudspeakers, surface mounted.

“We are very happy with the new system PEL has put in place” states Bradley Cordes, Venue Services Director for the Business Design Centre. “We wanted clarity of sound and the new system provides just that; it’s sharp, clear and loud and meets all modern safety standards.”

For over 35 years PEL Services Limited has been a leading UK systems company designing, supplying, installing and commissioning sound, fire, security & audio visual solutions. In addition PEL provides a range of service agreements including routine maintenance and fully comprehensive cover, on third party equipment as well as PEL systems, throughout the UK and Eire.

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