Sheaf Street


Sheaf Street

Leeds, UK

Pioneer Pro Audio

Pioneer Pro Audio / The Audio Group

The Audio Group

Project Submitted By:
Pioneer Pro Audio


Sheaf St is the public area of Duke Studios, a hub of creative work spaces in Leeds, comprising a cafe, bar, event space and outdoor terrace. These spaces create a unique 400-capacity warehouse venue that stages everything from live music and comedy to conferencing and dance music events.

Director, James Abbott-Donnelly, wished to upgrade the audio in Sheaf St to support a truly flexible and adaptable approach to staging every kind of event possible. Having done his research and spoken to a number of market leading brands, he concluded that Pioneer Pro Audio best understood the needs of the project and also that its range of speakers perfectly fitted the brief. Integrator The Audio Group was engaged to install systems into Sheaf St’s three distinct areas, with the proviso that they could function independently or be used in tandem across the spaces to suit any given event.

The main event space was equipped with 4 x XY122 for left and right mid-high clusters, 4 x XY81 for rear and front fill and 4 x XY218S delivering the low end. The DJ area is served by 2 x XPRS12 as monitors. The system is powered by Powersoft K10, K3 and M50 amplifiers utilising Armoina control software. The cafe space, which by night transforms into a second club room benefits from a powerful but discreet system comprising 4 x XY81 and 1 x XY215S as well as 2 x XPRS12 for DJ monitoring and the Yarden is served by 4 x XY81 and 1 x XY115S.

As well meeting the demands of high profile DJs, the flexibility of the XY and XPRS systems ensure crystal clear speech reproduction and easily deliver the headroom for comedy and talks. Speech intelligibility is crucial to the success of such events and the quality of the Pioneer Pro Audio system has drawn much praise. Film presentations are also part and parcel of the Sheaf St experience and clearly benefit from the flexible audio provision on offer.

The main challenges at Sheaf St centred on equipping it with audio provision that could meet a very wide-ranging programme of entertainment. Putting a system in for a club is one thing but equipping a venue whose different spaces could be used independently or in tandem for a huge variety of events required good design and a flexible approach.

Paul Adamson, Managing Director of The Audio Group: “We recognised very quickly that whatever went in had to work with, not dictate to, the requirements of the brief. The flexibility offered by the Pioneer Pro Audio setup is absolutely key to the range of events that can be staged at the venue – one look at the programme in the months since it’s been up and running tells you all you need to know about just how well it measures up. The control software allowed us to programme the system to take care of the diversity of applications and once designed, the installation was pretty straightforward. It’s clear that a lot of thought went into Pioneer Pro Audio’s flying and mounting solutions – the whole thing looks and sounds fantastic.”

Sheaf St’s credentials are perhaps best summed up by Director, James Abbott-Donnelly: “Our setup allows us to be highly flexible and stage a whole range of events, during which we are able to switch very quickly between requirements. That removes so many limitations on what we can take on. The brief was to install a system that could cope with everything we could throw at it, be sleek, tidy and discreet for events such as talks, comedy shows and conferences, yet have the audio quality to become a full professional club-grade rig for performance and DJ events. The setup allows us to have several events running alongside each other. We’re super happy with our Pioneer Pro Audio setup.”