Sports & Esports

Coda System for BMX Centre at National Cycling Centre

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Liverpool, UK based ADLIB’s busy specialist installation division has completed the design and installation of a new CODA Audio sound system at the BMX Centre, part of the country’s National Cycling Centre in Manchester.

It follows on from the highly successful CODA system supplied by ADLIB last year to the adjacent Velodrome track. ADLIB was asked back by Manchester City Council, to deliver a permanent multi-purpose audio solution for the first ever permanent indoor BMX track in the UK.

The ADLIB team was led by Roger Kirby and John Hughes, and overseen on site for them by Alex Burke.

CODA was specified for several reasons including continuity with the Velodrome system, and due to the positive response from the initial events. The system also offered the sonic range and dynamics demanded by the BMX Centre – which stages a whole range of events including those organised with local community groups, such as Urban Expression, a weekly youth night focusing on urban sports and music – as well as numerous other national and international BMX track events.

“The main objective was to provide a very flexible system that could handle loud music and hyper-enthusiastic commentators without excessive breakout whilst minimising environmental disturbances to the very near residential properties,”  explains Kirby.

So the starting point of the design was to optimise audio coverage and reduce the likelihood of environmental noise pollution – a task for which ADLIB worked closely with the venues preferred acoustic consultants (Sound Space Design) who endorsed their system design.  

Another requirement was that the system was simple enough to be operated by the general events staff on a day-to-day basis.

As a precursor, ADLIB provided a temporary sound system for the first large event in the new venue in November, which enabled the sonic characteristics of the space to be analysed, after which a final design was confirmed.

The speakers were configured to minimise reflections within the space’s challenging acoustic environment.

To cover the centre of the main seating stands, four hangs of four CODA Airline LA8 speakers were installed, each with an Airline LA8 sub at the top of each hang, complete with all the necessary flying accessories.

For the main stands’ front left and right positions, four CODA G712 / 96 speakers were introduced, and for the extreme rear left and right corners of the stand, two CODA G308 delay speakers were deployed.

At the starting gate positions on both ramps are four ADLIB AA81i speakers, with a pair located beneath the startgate of each ramp.

To minimise the sound spillage, the whole system is configured as ten independent sound zones across the stands, which allows fine tuning of the levels and the speaker operations in these spectator-only areas.

The LA8 loudspeakers enhance the overall spectator listening experience with their uniform cross-axis frequency response featuring planar technology, their coherent spectral response and their high output gain. The light weight – in relation to physical size – also offered many advantages in terms of hanging options, effectively simplifying the installation into a point-source speaker solution.

For control ADLIB specified a BSS Soundweb ‘London Architect’ system network incorporating a BLU-100 device with BLU-LINK connectivity for the simultaneous broadcast of audio signals and microphone sources via Ethernet. The Blu-100 will be used as the source feed for event commentary, DJ systems and visiting sound mixers to tie into the installed system. An intelligent system processor with on-board calendar configuration allows complete control and sound level limiting, and can be programmed with different pre-sets for times of day and days of the week, etc.

The 19 metre trim height of the structural ribs in the building’s ceiling, from which the sound system is flown, meant that the installation work had to be undertaken with the help of a self-propelled aerial working platform.

The timescale between confirmation of ADLIB’s design and the need to get the system installed for the National Series in mid-January was a massive challenge to ADLIB’s installation engineers, all of whom worked tirelessly to make the deadline and ensure that the process ran smoothly and with no hitches.

John Hughes sums up, “We were delighted to secure the BMX Centre work following our successful installation next door at the Velodrome. CODA Audio has been extremely supportive on both projects and helped massively in working with us on the tight deadlines!”

Jarl Walsh, general manager ofthe National Cycling Centre states, “I am delighted with the performance of the new PA installed by ADLIB. They listened to our views and requests right from the initial consultation meetings through to the actual installation and sign off.We now have a first class sound system which meets the exacting demands of a full range of events we will be hosting in the new arena, from small local events to major international competitions attracting the world’s best riders and spectators from around the globe".

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