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Sound Reinforcement - Forums for Live Sound Professionals - Your Displayed Name Must Be Your Real Full Name To Post In The Live Sound Forums => SR Forum Archives => Road Test FUD Forum Archive => Topic started by: Bennett Prescott on February 25, 2010, 06:32:59 pm

Title: SSE ProSight Line Array Inclinometer
Post by: Bennett Prescott on February 25, 2010, 06:32:59 pm
It is a necessity to have a decent inclinometer if you're hanging line arrays based on results from acoustic prediction software. To get your computed solution into the real world requires the array to be hung at the same height and angle as you have it in software. I am aware of only four purpose-built tools to accurately gauge line array tilt, and the SSE ProSight is largely regarded to be the king of the hill.

If it's so good, you'd expect to see it everywhere. Unfortunately, until recently they've been rather hard to get ahold of, and if you try and order them through some channels the prices quoted are absurd. I had one person from a major loudspeaker company that offers the ProSight as their OEM angle setting tool quote me almost $9,000 for a complete system. Considering that other solutions I know from experience to be perfectly serviceable cost about 1/6 of that, the ProSight had better come with a free line array at that price.

Fortunately, at nearly the same time I was hunting for inclinometers for my personal use, I was contacted by Randy Frierson, well known LABster. Randy's company, Concert Systems Production Group LLC, is now the exclusive US distributor for the SSE ProSight. I was asked by him to road test this device and happily agreed.

The ProSight package I received is apparently the standard, with two sending units (inclinometers with lasers), one receiver (with power, control, and all the math), and two 30m 6-pin XLR cables. First impressions indicate extremely sturdy build quality and very slick packaging.

The laser/inclinometer sending units store their calibration internally in non-volatile memory, and the inclinometer is accurate to better than 1/10 of a degree between +/- 30
Title: Pricing
Post by: Bennett Prescott on February 25, 2010, 07:03:11 pm
I just got confirmation on this pricing.

SSE Audio Group ProSight system, one receiver, two senders, and 2x 30m cables, exactly the same as what I'm reviewing:
MSRP $3,995.
Pro audio price: $2,879.

Pro audio price is for a non stocking dealer who just wants one package.

Dealerships are available, contact Randy at CSPG.
Phone: (850) 308-5940
Title: Re: Pricing
Post by: Franz Francis on March 02, 2010, 12:08:44 pm
Looks very similar to the NEXO inclinometer both externally and internally, I am guessing NEXO's version is a rebadged SSE unit.

Title: Re: Pricing
Post by: Bennett Prescott on March 02, 2010, 01:54:20 pm
Franz Francis wrote on Tue, 02 March 2010 12:08

Looks very similar to the NEXO inclinometer both externally and internally, I am guessing NEXO's version is a rebadged SSE unit.

You would be correct. I have been made to understand that they are significantly more expensive from NEXO than from Randy here in the states.
Title: Re: Pricing Update Correction
Post by: Randy Frierson on March 05, 2010, 07:49:08 pm
Pro Net price is $2,397.00

for Dealer Pricing contact
Title: Re: SSE ProSight Line Array Inclinometer
Post by: Alex Penn on March 09, 2010, 02:18:17 pm
I'm Alex Penn, Sales Manager from SSE Audio Group. While we are certainly overall very pleased with the review Bennett Prescott has carried out on the SSE Prosight Inclinometer System there are a few points mentioned which we would like to discuss further.

Firstly the question of waterproofing the Prosight units and in particular the SLST laser sender, which when in use will live on the side or top of the line array. You are correct these units are not 100% waterproof and it does clearly state this on the label.  When the Prosight SLST sender unit was first created it was designed to be used with the Nexo GeoT system, and with this system it was mounted within the bumper which formed a roof over the unit, so the water consideration did not arise. There is a hole in the bumper front for the laser to fire through. However since then we have been asked to design brackets to use with all manner of line arrays, and so the question is relevant. The modules are housed in a two part folded steel case and there are no internal gaskets to stop water entering the housing. That said the housing is very tight and while not waterproof we could certainly say water resistant. Sure if you were to submerge the unit in a bucket of water there is no doubt water would get inside, but the fact that we use these units on a daily basis and have used them in some of the UK's wettest conditions, is testament to the fact that they certainly can withstand a heavy shower. Its fair to say that in certain outdoor situations the units can be fully exposed, depending on stage design etc, but we have never heard of a failure due to water, and there are over 2000 in service around the world. When the design remit was first considered, a key factor was making the housing strong enough to stand being thrown around in road cases. What was available on the market at that time were units in plastic boxes that rarely survived the length of the tour. We wanted a strong rugged housing that was road proof, and the fact that we now have 6 year old units touring is testament to that.

What you have not seen in this review are any of the custom fitment brackets which we can currently provide for Nexo GeoT, GeoD, L'Acoutsics VDOSC, K1, KUDO, d+b J Series, Meyer Sound Milo, Mica, Melodie and JBL VERTEC. All of these brackets provide a standard mounting platform for either our horizontal, or vertical mount bracket. This is basically another piece of folded steel that wraps tightly around the SLST leaving the front and the rear of the SLST exposed. This does also act as a further barrier for protection from the elements.

Unfortunately as nice as it would be for the Prosight SCT30 cable to use a 3 pin XLR this isn't possible without a change of technology for the signal. The cable has to carry power to the SLST, and send all the data back to the meter. We decided that having the power supply in the meter unit meant that if for any reason there was a power failure, it was at ground level where it was easy to fix (i.e. change the batteries) rather than being up in the air. It also reduced the cost as all SLST share the one PSU. The 6 pin XLR represents a connector that is familiar to road users, reliable yet cost effective, and available all over world. We know of no other 6 pin connector that fullfills this criteria and it seemed to us the logical way to go.

Bennett I don't know why there was no manual included in your kit but as standard this is on the packing list and should be included with every kit. Obviously something went amiss this time but we will endeavour to make sure this mistake is not repeated for other customers.

You mention that the manual has a section about re aligning the laser, and you are wondering if this means it needs constant checking. No. It does not. However The laser itself is mounted in an aluminium housing bezel, and this bezel is bolted to the housing case. When the bolts are tightened unequally then the unit will not be focused exactly. If the unit is dropped it may be possible for a minute movement to take place, which over 100 yards could make a significant difference to the lasers accuracy. Accordingly the manual goes into considerable detail to explain how you can check the set up, and periodically its a good idea to check it. This design also allows you to replace a laser in the field if it should break without having to return it here to the factory - when we designed the product we were concerned as to how reliable the laser would be over time, but as its turned out the laser we use has proved to be well suited to the job and the number of failures has been very small.

We currently have approx. 15 touring Prosight meter units and 40 SLST senders in our own hire inventory, and so we have our own instant feedback loop for reliability and performance isssues, and bear in mind most of ours are early ones.  Many other UK and international hire companies use Prosight as their inclinometer of choice because as you say it is the best available. We intend to keep Prosight at the forefront of inclinometer products for the audio market and so your criticism is appreciated and we will work to keep improving the product. For the minute though it is very reliable and intuitive and any experienced system tech who uses Prosight, will usually want it as a permanent addition to their tool kit, or their chosen hire company's inventory.
Title: Re: SSE ProSight Line Array Inclinometer
Post by: Bennett Prescott on March 09, 2010, 04:50:45 pm
Alex, thank you so much for chiming in.

I expected that "not waterproof" meant "do not submerge" and since most of my work is above water that shouldn't be a problem. I've never heard of anyone having a failure due to exposure with this product, so it's probably a non-issue. The kind of weather we're having right now is too rough on humans to put on a show, but I look forward to exposing this gear to the elements in a few months, when the weather is just annoying rather than life threatening.

Sorry for not including your custom brackets with this review, but since I'll be using the ProSight with many different line arrays I didn't ask Randy for any.

Just for giggles, I checked the alignment on both laser units today, in preparation for using them on Thursday. Both were within 1/4" at 10' on both axes, and within 1/4" of each other. I expect that's more than good enough for their intended purpose.

Trying to draw a dot on a piece of paper with that stupid bright laser shining is pretty difficult though! I'm going to have spots in my vision for an hour.


P.S. Do you have any photos of the sender unit internals? I'd like to see what's inside them, but the screws are covered by the SSE sticker and I don't want to chew that up.
Title: Re: SSE ProSight Line Array Inclinometer
Post by: Alex Penn on March 12, 2010, 08:42:43 am
Hi Bennett,

Check out photos of SLST internals. I've also included some pictures of the brackets we do for K1 and VERTEC to give you an idea of how they work and the further weather protection they provide.

Let me know if you need anything else.

I can also be contacted via



PS. Please note warning stickers on the laser senders. We are not responsible for blindness caused through looking into the lasers! Don't follow the lights Smile



Title: Re: SSE ProSight Line Array Inclinometer
Post by: Alex Penn on March 12, 2010, 08:45:46 am
It seems to want to only let me put one picture up at a time so here are the others.

Title: Re: SSE ProSight Line Array Inclinometer
Post by: Alex Penn on March 12, 2010, 08:46:20 am
Title: Re: SSE ProSight Line Array Inclinometer
Post by: Bennett Prescott on May 24, 2010, 02:37:37 pm
I finally remembered to bring my camera while hanging arrays in a Giant Concrete Box™ this Saturday. As you can see, I used the tried and true "electrical tape it to the fly bar" method, and the inclinometer was as usual quick and easy to work with. The laser is highly visible at distance, haven't tried it outdoors yet, but as far as I'm concerned this box is fantastic.


I also have a video, just for fun. Unfortunately we were rigging with chain falls, so this isn't exactly indicative of the effects of bumping motors on the display, but it's nice and stable. You can certainly see the laser in this video, even 140' away on this lousy iPhone video.
Title: Re: SSE ProSight Line Array Inclinometer
Post by: Jason Dermer on May 25, 2010, 12:44:02 am
Why oh why would anyone ever have to hang their line array from a single motor (more than double enough for the weight) and then use a (rated) chainfall to make the slight angle adjustment needed? Could it be the lighting company showing up two motors short to safely hang their rig? Hmmmm.....
Title: Steve Payne just got Prosight
Post by: Randy Frierson on May 26, 2010, 06:42:42 pm
Hey Steve just got a prosight kit maybe he can chime in with his thoughts...Randy
Title: Re: Steve Payne just got Prosight
Post by: Steve Payne on May 26, 2010, 11:29:41 pm
Yep, definitely positive initial impressions.This is a really nice package.  Build quality is very robust. Simple to operate and appears to be spot on accurate compared to my existing inclinometer.   I need to design and build mounting brackets to fit the Flex bumper.  The plan is for this to be part of a system that will take full advantage of the Flex's unique single point, adjustable suspension.  More details later.
Title: Re: Steve Payne just got Prosight
Post by: Steve Payne on May 27, 2010, 10:01:58 am
Also, a couple of things.  

One, the AA battery pack fits a little loose in its retaining bracket inside the case of the reader unit.  You can hear and feel it sliding back and forth inside of it's captive position - just 1/4" or less - but it bugged me.  I put a small piece of stick on foam on either end of the battery pack and it snugged things right up.  No more rattle.

Secondly, and this should be obvious to anyone with half a brain (but wasn't to me until Randy pointed out the error of my ways).  The sending unit must be in the proper orientation, ie, flat and perpendicular to the measurement source (so that you can read the writing on the side of the sending unit).  For instance, the laser will work fine, but the inclinometer will NOT, if it is in this position as shown in one of Bennet's photos:


Again, this should probably be obvious, but I didn't see it explicitly stated in the manual and it got me for sure.   Embarassed

This thing really is cool.
Title: Re: Steve Payne just got Prosight
Post by: Randy Frierson on May 30, 2010, 11:47:54 pm
enjoy my friend, your new sc 48 is enroute...let me know what you come up with for a mounting bracket for flexarray..we currently stock brackets for D&B, V Dosc, Meyer and JBL....Randy
Title: Re: SSE ProSight Line Array Inclinometer
Post by: Bennett Prescott on June 07, 2010, 03:56:35 pm
Used these inclinometers for some real throw last week in Worcester, MA's DCU Center. 195' from the array to the farthest seat, and the ProSight let me nail the coverage out of the box. The laser was invaluable in helping my excellent union crew (thanks, local 96!) get the in/out angle of the array correct.

The very stable angle indication is the best feature of this device. No guessing, the angle is what it says it is, saves a bunch of time yelling back and forth.

My custom gaff tape attachment method continues to work well, although on this particular fly bar there was just a little window for the laser.

That damn 6-pin cable is always either too long or two short... about 30' too short for this gig, so it had to get tied up on top of the flown truss instead of terminating back stage where I could keep an eye on it.

Title: Re: SSE ProSight Line Array Inclinometer
Post by: Bennett Prescott on June 07, 2010, 03:56:58 pm
Title: Re: SSE ProSight Line Array Inclinometer
Post by: Bennett Prescott on June 07, 2010, 03:57:48 pm
You can just see the arrays in this photo... I need an SLR if I'm going to take photos like this.

Title: Re: SSE ProSight Line Array Inclinometer
Post by: Bennett Prescott on June 17, 2010, 01:34:03 pm
The ProSight continues to be a God-send, I can get my arrays trimmed and angle set in a fraction of the time it would take with a non-interpolating inclinometer. The stability of the display continues to be a big selling point, the laser is nice indoors but on this outdoor gig I didn't bother to hunt for it. 150' of throw with only a 29' trim, but I had plenty of boxes and had done my computer work the night before... once again everything was dead on out of the box. I couldn't be happier.

I am having two small problems. First, the sleep time on the reader is much too fast! I would prefer it was variable in some way, or that I could disable it... sometimes I just need to leave that thing on while I go do something else so my crew can finish setting the array for me. Having to explain how to use the device, having them forget, having to stop what I'm doing and turn it on again and then activate the laser again... pain in the ass.

Second, often when I connect the cable from the sender to the reader it will display a completely inaccurate angle (like 22