RCF presents PAcalculate version 1.3.2, an Android and iOS app for mobile phone or tablet with over 30 calculators, reference info, and utilities for sound reinforcement and lighting professionals.
The new version boasts in-line and broadside subwoofer array calculators. The former allows for simulation of end-fire and gradient arrays, including an obscure 4-element topology originally proposed by the very Harry Olson. The broadside section features independent mechanical and electronic arcing and steering, with the possibility of adding a gradient line, or several end-fire lines, a type of subwoofer configuration that has become widespread to achieve wide uniform subwoofer coverage with reduced stage leakage. Frequency response graphs (front-to-back ratio as well as multi-angle responses), an isobar display, polar plots and coverage maps provide a comprehensive set of graphics for an insightful analysis of design alternatives. Up to 96 elements (sound sources) can be simulated, 48+48 in L/R mode. A table is displayed with coordinates and settings (delay, polarity) that can be emailed for reference. A footer alerts the user if the specific configuration requires delay tuning on top of the results calculated (such as for gradient arrays).
The dedicated tool reportedly helps getting results quickly and easily. As an example, comparing between electronic and mechanical steering just requires entering the angle in the rotation input field of the broadside array calculator to get results for the former, and then clicking on a radio button to switch to results for the latter. The straightforward user interface also encourages ‘what if’ experimentation, such as trying different toe-out angles in left/right deployments. Settings can be combined such that the user could, say, simulate a L/R arrangement with two broadside arrays that are arced electronically (using delay) but also steered mechanically and complemented with a gradient line.
Developer Joe Brusi of Brusi Acoustics, a consulting firm for electroacoustics and an independent laboratory for loudspeaker testing based in Valencia, Spain, comments: “RCF and PAcalculate go back a long way, since they were the very first sponsor for the app, so I’s great to see such a respected logo on the most exciting update since it was first launched in 2014.”
PAcalculate can be downloaded for free. The app supports 8 different languages, including English, Spanish, Italian and Chinese (the app’s largest user base).
Play Store (Android phones and tablets)
App Store (Apple iOS and iPadOS devices)