First opened to the public in 1928, Stadio Atleti Azzurri d'Italia has a storied history as home to the Atalanta and Albinoleffe football teams. With a seating capacity of 24,726, the field is 120 meters long and 70 meters wide with grandstand seating that is only partially covered. Sound reinforcement was, until recently, a sore subject for attendees of the aging stadium’s various events. As part of planned refurbishments, that issue has now been rectified—thanks to a new sound system drawn from the catalog of Valencia, Spain-based D.A.S. Audio.
Sound Services by Angelo Pelliccioli, headquartered in Castel Rozzone, Italy, which handles sound and lighting services for the special events, broadcast, theatrical, and fixed installation markets, was contracted to renovate the sound system at Stadio Atleti Azzurri d'Italia. Luciano Biamino, head of D.A.S. Audio’s Italian distributor Kennell and who collaborates with Sound Services and D.A.S. Audio on a variety of projects, commented on the challenges of the installation.
“Since most of this large stadium lacks a roof,” Biamino explained, “we had limited structural support for the loudspeakers. This situation necessitated loudspeakers that had long throw characteristics capable of reaching the people sitting in the end-zone and goal area grandstands—while being lightweight so as to conform to building codes. The sound system was split between the two side grandstands—‘Tribuna Storica’ (which includes the VIP seating area), and the opposing ‘Tribuna Giulio Cesare’ grandstands. Further, for the purpose of integrating the entire system, the Tribuna Storica system had to be delayed in order to reduce the signal interference in the goal stands.”
Designed to comply with the IP-54 standards for outdoor use, forty-four D.A.S. Audio BiDriver Plus loudspeaker systems were deployed. The BiDriver Plus is a two-way, mid-high, coaxial speaker built into a special horn unit that is ideal for long throw applications that also require exceptional directivity control and a high level of speech intelligibility. In order to extend the frequency response of the system down to 35 Hz, twelve D.A.S. CA-215 arrayable subwoofers with dual 15-inch transducers were installed—primarily for music applications. The various loudspeakers are driven by a combination of six D.A.S. SLA-4000, four PS-2400, and two PS-1400 power amplifiers. Audio processing for the system is managed by two D.A.S. DSP-4080 4-in/8-out audio processors.
D.A.S. Audio Sound Projects engineer Eva Argandoña designed the system. Acoustic prediction with EASE 4.3 demonstrated to the client that the sound system would achieve solid SPL performance with uniform coverage throughout all audience areas. Argandoña, with assistance from D.A.S. Audio’s Victor Catalá (physicist and audio engineer at D.A.S.), traveled to Bergamo to handle the system setup. For this, they used the SAT Live audio measurement tool and the DSP-4080 for time alignment between the BiDrivers and the CA-215 subwoofers, along with equalization and limiting of the loudspeakers.
“Of particular note,” Biamino pointed out, “the entire setup—both the loudspeakers and the accompanying electronics—was split in two, so the sound system is symmetrical across both grandstands. To accomplish this, Victor and Eva only had to adjust one of the grandstands. The same preset was then used for the other grandstand. System parameters were simply copied between the two DSP-4080 processors. Due to the considerable distance between the Tribuna Storica and Tribuna Giulio Cesare seating areas, the transmission of the signal is accomplished by means of a wireless system.”
The installation of Stadio Atleti Azzurri d'Italia’s new D.A.S. Audio sound system was completed in late September and was first placed into service on October 10th for the match between Atalanta and Torino. Biamino reports being very impressed with D.A.S. Audio’s customer/technical support services and notes that the client is ecstatic with the new sound system’s performance. “This project presented numerous challenges,” Biamino said, “and D.A.S. Audio’s support was absolutely terrific. The company’s system design services are first-rate and the work done by Eva Argandoña and Victor Catalá was nothing short of exceptional. Our client is extremely satisfied with the new sound system and was particularly complimentary of the service. In my mind, that’s a win-win for all involved!”