L-Acoustics Unveils Revolutionary Multi-Channel LA7.16i Amplified Controller

In a live and streamed presentation for partners and press focusing on the growing, strategic installation market, L-Acoustics encouraged users to “amplify differently,” unveiling the new LA7.16i amplified controller. After extensive years of research and development, LA7.16i surmounts the limitations of current high power amplifier configurations used in most installation projects.

LA7.16i significantly improves flexibility and efficiency, especially in multi-channel scenarios. Unique in the market, LA7.16i offers an unprecedented 16x16 architecture in a 2U chassis with seamless Milan-AVB redundancy. Each of the 16 output channels delivers up to 1300 watts at 8 ohms or 1100 watts at 4 ohms.

The LA7.16i amplified controller will drive both current and future L-Acoustics loudspeakers for more efficient and sustainable installations. It offers supreme flexibility to meet real-time power needs, energy efficiency, and the ability to address multi-channel and hybrid applications, including the newly released L-ISA Ambiance® room enhancement software.

LA7.16i was developed by thinking differently. Current amplifier technology is dimensioned to power all channels simultaneously over extended periods of time. However, in real-world applications, this kind of demand is rare. The new breed of amplified controller technology introduced with LA7.16i delivers power more efficiently and uses energy more effectively, ultimately offering a lower cost-per-channel solution and an electronic unit that consumes 30% less energy when idle.

“Getting this kind of power capacity into this kind of space is an incredible breakthrough in R&D. No other amplified controller offers the channel density of LA7.16i in this power class,” explains Germain Simon, Head of Product and Technology Marketing at L-Acoustics. “Before LA7.16i, you’d need 8U to generate the same power as LA7.16i. Conversely, you could fit 16 channels in 4U, but you’d be giving up power. That kind of compromise is no longer necessary with LA7.16i.”

With the new LA7.16i amplified controller, L-Acoustics introduces L-SMART, a suite of advanced power management technologies that allow designers to mix and match any L-Acoustics loudspeaker onto one amplifier. L-SMART uses proprietary predictive modeling algorithms to manage the power supply unit (PSU) and the individual amplification channels. Hardware sensors within the amplifier supply real-time information, which is analyzed by the DSP to dynamically match loudspeaker system needs. The PSU can then provide extremely high short-term peak power or lower power over longer hold times. This energy is delivered intelligently to the advanced Class-D output stages, assuring optimum system performance at all times. LA7.16i can drive any L-Acoustics speaker up to K2, enabling high-resolution amplification and processing of large-format speakers with less system budget.

The innovative combination of high channel density and power capability makes LA7.16i the perfect partner for medium to large permanent installations or immersive audio installations requiring a significant increase in discrete processing and amplification. Whether the system design uses large numbers of individual speakers, line source arrays—or a hybrid of both—the adaptability and discretization of the LA7.16i is its strength, eliminating the need to waste amplifier power to attain processing granularity. With LA7.16i, you get both.

“The full power of our R&D resources was laser-focused on developing and testing the LA7.16i amplified controller,” continues Simon. “We’ve employed automotive-grade components on critical circuits and developed special airflow modeling during testing. Open up an LA7.16i unit, and it will be as sleek and elegant on the inside as it is on the outside.”

Engineered for installation applications, LA7.16i features loudspeaker monitoring, protection and management, GPIOs, terminal block connectors, and a backup 24V DC input which enables the DSP card to continue functioning if mains power is lost. Smart mains current limiting and circuit breaker emulation are also included. LA7.16i supports Milan-AVB seamless network redundancy and is remotely controlled and monitored using LA Network Manager or third-party systems like Q-SYS and Crestron. LA7.16i provides a summation matrix with 16 inputs that can be selected from up to 128 Milan-AVB channels (16 streams of 8 channels each) on EtherCON™ connectors. Milan-AVB seamless redundancy is standard. Additional qualifications are underway to complete Milan certification and to support the AES67 audio network protocol.

LA7.16i will be at ISE Booth #7Q400, in Hall 7 and InfoComm Booth W3011, and ships in Q3 2022.