Founded in 1956, the University of South Florida has grown to become one of the largest universities in the U.S.
Famous alumni include actors Lauren Hutton and Drake Hogestyn, wrestler Hulk Hogan, and Major League Baseball player/manager Tony La Russa. USF's sprawling main campus in Tampa is home to a range of varsity sports teams, including football, baseball, soccer, and softball.
Magnum Audio Group of Tampa recently provided sound systems for three of the campus' sporting facilities: a 4500-seat baseball stadium, a 1500-seat softball stadium, and a 750-seat soccer stadium. Despite the magnitude of the three design-build projects, Magnum's Randi Crooks reports things ran quite smoothly.
"We do a lot of athletic venues," Crooks said. "I've been the head Audio Engineer for the Tampa Buccaneers for 19 years now, and we also handle audio for the BUCS at Raymond James Stadium, and for the New York Yankees at Steinbrenner Field here in Tampa."
"Baseball and softball venues in particular are fairly simple distributed systems, and the soccer stadium wasn't all that different," Crooks explained. "The seats at the soccer stadium are only located on one side, but they have long landscaped berm areas where people can sit on their lounge chairs. We set up the Community R1 loudspeakers to fire down the base lines, because we knew it was powerful enough to provide coverage to that entire area."
The baseball stadium is covered by eight Community WET-Series W2-2W8 dual 8-inch systems, along with two R1-66 medium-throw loudspeakers and two R.5SUB subwoofers. Four Crown DSi-4000 amplifiers power the loudspeakers, with system drive and processing provided by a DBX Drive Rack 260. An Ashly MX-508 eight-channel rack mount mixer completes the system.
Over at the softball stadium, five WET W2-2W8 systems are installed, along with a pair of R1-66 medium-throw loudspeakers and two R.5SUB subwoofers. The system is powered by three Crown DSi-4000 amps. Another DBX Drive Rack 260 covers system DSP, and another Ashly MX-508 mixer provides input channels.
Four more R.5-99 short-throw loudspeakers are installed for the Baseball and Softball batting cages. That system is powered by a pair of Crown DSi-2000 amplifiers, with a six-channel Ashley MX-206 mic/line mixer.
Audio for the soccer facility is handled by four R1-66 medium-throw loudspeakers and four more R.5-99 short-throw systems. Powering the system is a pair of Crown DSi-4000 amps. Another Ashly MX-508 mixer and DBX Drive Rack 260 round off the system.
In addition to coverage and performance, Crooks points to the all-weather durability of the WET-Series and R-Series as another factor in their selection. "We do get our share of extreme weather here in Florida, and Community's weather-resistance has proven itself time after time," he said. "After Hurricane Wilma came through in 2005, we used R-Series loudspeakers to replace the destroyed systems in 13 football stadiums in Palm Beach County, and they're all still working great."