Strategically located on the perimeter of the Podomoro Golf Complex in a leafy suburb of Jakarta, At-Thohir Mosque was built by the extended family of automotive magnate, the late Teddy Thohir. The graceful, pearlescent house of worship features 29 domes meant to signify family. The building, which can welcome up to 1,900 worshippers, is a gift from a government minister, one of Mr. Thohir’s sons, to the local community and was inaugurated this spring by Indonesia’s president.
Wishing to maintain the grandeur of the building—its clean white interior, tastefully adorned with gold calligraphy representing the 99 meanings of Allah—the mosque’s technical committee required a powerful and pristine sound system that would discreetly fit into the building’s aesthetic. With recent government guidelines putting a cap on sound volumes at 100 decibels and limiting amplified audio to inside buildings, it complicated the sound system choice. To help them face the challenge, the committee turned to local Jakarta-based pro-audio supplier, PT Gracia Auvindo.
Hendra Halim, Project Manager and Systems Engineer at PT Gracia Auvindo, explains that in addition to the aesthetic and SPL requirement, installation options were limited in the 28.5-metre by 28.5-metre main prayer hall. Mr. Hendra says, “In addition, the hall is constructed of marble and granite, creating reflective surfaces throughout, compounded by the inner side of a dome-shaped roof.”
Mr. Hendra worked with L-Acoustics Application Project Engineer APAC, Chung Wah Khiew, using L-Acoustics Soundvision to design a system that would minimize reflections by keeping sound on the audience area, avoiding the domed roof and reflective walls. “We mapped a Syva design in Soundvision and found that its 50-metre throw capacity would be more than sufficient for the 30-metre-deep prayer hall,” he explains. The graceful lines of Syva would also melt into the architecture, so Mr Hendra brought the design proposal to the mosque committee, noting that the system would be white to match the venue.
The final system design installed in the main prayer hall consists of two Syva placed four metres high and serving as the main system. Four 5XT coaxial speakers serve as front-fill, while an X8 serves as centre-fill. Two additional Syva, mounted at 3.5-metres, serve as delay speakers. “The two Syva delays allow the mosque to avoid driving the main Syva at full power, thereby reducing reflections,” reveals Khiew.
Four additional 5XT coaxial speakers are installed in the antechamber, while two further 5XT are installed in the mosque’s basement, both of which are used for celebratory functions.
With the new sound system calibrated, the mosque committee is pleased with its excellent intelligibility and congregation members have commented on the clarity of the prayer services. “Working as a team with L-Acoustics and the At-Thohir committee, we’ve succeeded in overcoming important challenges to getting great sound in this space,” Mr Hendra enthuses. “Soundvision was especially helpful in ensuring that our team proposed and installed the ideal system, and the satisfaction of the committee and the congregation are a great honour for the PT Gracia Auvindo team and me,” he concludes.