Northridge, CA--Home to the Texas Christian University (TCU) Horned Frogs’ football team, Amon G. Carter Stadium is currently undergoing a multi-million dollar rebuild, which includes a full redesign of the sound system.
Initially, a Harman-based distributed system was considered with custom boxes; however, the University desired the “big sound” that comes with an end zone cluster.
Casey Sherred of Acoustic Dimensions in Addison, TX worked with the University to design a system that would capture and deliver the feel of the college football experience.
“As HKS Architects developed the design for the stadium, iterative changes moved the scoreboard to a level that made an end zone solution possible, giving the University the audio experience it wanted to enhance game-day excitement,” Sherred said. “TCU was very pleased with the performance of its original JBL system, which drove the selection of Harman products from speakers, amplifiers, DSP to the audio console.”
Fort Worth, TX-based Electro Acoustics installed the complete Harman system, highlighted by six JBL VLA loudspeaker arrays.
The stadium, which was operable during the 2011 football season, is slated to complete construction by the 2012 season. With the sound system replaced, it now boasts 20 VLA601H-WRX loudspeakers, eight VLA601-WRX’s, eight VLA301H-WRX’s and eight ASB6128 subwoofers hanging from the scoreboard behind the north end zone. The north seating areas are covered by four PD5322/95-WRX, two PD743-WRX, 11 AM7212/00-WRX and 15 Control 28T-60 loudspeakers. Throughout the seating and pedestrian traffic areas, audio systems include: 189 Control 26CT ceiling speakers located in the restrooms and 89 Control 25AV’s providing sound to concession areas. The Founder’s Lounge and Champion’s Club utilize 28 Control 227CT’s and seven Control 321CT’s to entertain the crowds with clear, live music and commentary.
“The VLA speakers allowed us to design a system that exhibited broadband pattern control, facilitating great sound 600 feet away while controlling sound levels on the party deck just 25 feet below,” Sherred said.
The schedule was tight with construction occurring during the football season. Installation and commissioning of the audio system was scheduled down to a ‘T’ as installers and designers dealt with construction on the stadium. The most challenging aspect was ensuring the sound and building contractors did not interfere with each other, causing delays or budget overruns. According to Chris Jordan, president of Electro Acoustics, by working with the contractors and electricians, Electro Acoustics was able to construct, program and test the equipment in their shop, shipping and rigging it at the field when time permitted. The project was completed on time and within budget.
“JBL has proven itself with TCU as a reliable, high-quality performer over the decades, which aligns itself perfectly with the reputation of Horned Frogs football,” Jordan said. “Constantly in the national spotlight and drawing sold out crowds, it is important to have a stadium that not only looks like it hosts a national caliber team, but one that also excites the crowd and offers that extra ‘wow’ factor. The VLA system throughout the stadium is top-quality and performs immaculately.”
The sound system is powered by Crown amplifiers – 43 MA-5000i’s and 18 MA-9000i’s, accompanied with CTS 1200, 2000, 3000, 4200A, 600 and 8200A amps – and processed through BSS London DSP technology, including BLU-120, 160, 800 BLU-10 touchscreen remote and SW9012US volume controllers in the suites. The Soundcraft Si Compact digital console will be installed during the offseason. The Harman system is controlled through Harman’s HiQnet System Architect.
“We’ve had a great relationship with TCU over the past 20 years and they continue to rely on our experience to do exactly what we promise and to provide exceptional service,” Jordan said. “The system sounds great. TCU expected a loud and clear system to excite their fans and players and that’s exactly what we installed. There is plenty of headroom, low distortion and it is absolutely clear.”
“I’ve received multiple complements, from university admin, coaches, players and even folks around the neighborhood,” Jordan said. “We couldn’t ask for a better response.”