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Funktion One and XTA Steel the Day in Slovakia

Sport and entertainment are the themes of a major audio upgrade which has recently been completed at the Steel Arena in Slovakia. The ice hockey venue presented considerable acoustic challenges, but the installation of a Funktion One / XTA system has made all the difference.

Located in Košice, the 8,400 capacity Steel Arena is the second largest ice hockey venue in the country. As well as ice-based sports it hosts equestrian events, motor sport, basketball, football, exhibitions, dance, theatrical spectaculars and live music. It will also be a venue for the 2011 Ice Hockey World Championship

Specified and installed by Humenné-based Citylight, the project entailed removing the existing audio installation and installing a brand new sound system. This was complemented by adding acoustic treatment to the walls and ceiling.

“I’ve worked in the arena as an front of house engineer several times and had real problems with the acoustics,” says Citylight’s Igor Horváth. “When I heard the Funktion One AX88 for the first time in London, I knew that it was the solution for venues like the Steel Arena. And, of course, if you are use the best speakers in the world, you have to use the best equipment throughout the audio chain - and there is nobody better than XTA.”

The new system comprises 19 AX88 and 10 F118 subs flown in five clusters 23 metres above the floor along the hall’s centreline. Powered by three E45, four E25 and one E15 MC² Audio E Series amplifiers, all system control is via XTA DP448's.

“The system is used for announcements, so its intelligibility was critical,” says Igor. “By installing both a great new audio system, it made the sound much better. But, to improve it further, I suggested installing the acoustic treatment as well.

Comprising 3,800 acoustic panels hung beneath the roof and around 1000 sq metres of acoustic insulation on the walls, the combination of the new audio system and acoustic treatment has transformed the Steel Arena’s sound.

“As well as announcements, the system is also used for fills and delays at live gigs. Eight output channels are split across the five clusters, each delayed separately,” says Igor. “The front of house engineer sets it up using XTA’s AudioCore software and it sounds amazing.”





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