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Harman’s BSS Audio, Crown and Soundcraft Take Pole Position at Circuit of the Americas

The newly completed Circuit of the Americas (COTA) is the first purpose-built Grand Prix racetrack in the U.S.

An integral part of COTA is its public address and Emergency Communication System (ECS), featuring Harman’s BSS Audio networked digital signal processors and Crown power amplifiers which also receive input from the venue’s Soundcraft mixing console to serve a variety of sound reinforcement needs throughout the venue.

“Although the audio system is used for announcements and music during races and other activities, a facility like Circuit of the Americas requires an emergency notification system that meets public safety requirements as mandated by the National Fire Protection Association,” explained Brian Elwell, Senior Consultant and Vice President of design firm Acoustic Dimensions.

“For 51 weeks out of the year COTA is used for purposes other than auto racing, so the audio system also needs to be suitable for concerts, events and activities throughout the entire facility, both indoors and out,” emphasised Elwell.

“The Soundweb London network is an integral part of making everything work, acting as a core system that runs all audio signals everywhere including emergency notification to the 20,000-seat amphitheater and 40,000 people in the Grand Plaza area."

The project required that audio processing and amplification be installed in more than 30 different rack locations around the track as well as the grandstand, pit building, Grand Plaza indoor facilities and COTA’S Tower Amphitheater.

A Soundcraft Si Compact 16 digital mixing console with CobraNet option card is used to mix various audio sources and integrate the console’s audio outputs with other components in various parts of the installation.

Matched to different loudspeaker zones and requirements, more than 70 Crown amplifiers are installed throughout Circuit of the Americas, including CTs 1200 USP4CN, CTs 4200A, CTs 3000 LITE, CTs 2000 LITE, CTs 1200 LITE, CTs 600 LITE, MA5000i, and 1160A models.

“We chose Crown power amps since their onboard DSP is extremely effective, and they work hand in hand with BSS components via Harman HiQnet, noted David Battershell, Project Engineer for Ford Audio-Video Systems.

"Harman’s HiQnet networking protocol links it all together and provides real-time monitoring status for all of the Soundweb London processing, Crown amplifiers and loudspeaker cable runs around the track. This ensures the system meets the emergency communication system standards as specified by the design team.”





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