Yamaha audio equipment is making high profile inroads into the audio systems of the world’s major sporting venues. DME series digital mixing engines and SB168-ES stage boxes are a feature of the new audio system at Paris’s Stade de France and now Europe’s newest major sporting venue, Lithuania’s Žalgiris Arena, features no less than 31 Yamaha power amplifiers.
Located in Kaunas, the €50m Žalgiris Arena covers 39,684m² and is the largest in the Baltic states. Designed as a multi-purpose sports and entertainment venue, its primary functions are hosting basketball matches and live concerts, seating 15,442 spectators for the former and up to 17,500 for the latter.
The Arena is a truly 21st Century facility, featuring a number of technical innovations like automated, power-operated windows. Designed by project engineer Orunas Urbonas and installed by Kaunas-based Audiotonas, the Arena’s audio specification is similarly advanced, using 16 Yamaha TX4n and 15 TX5n amplifiers, with a pair of NHB32-C 32 channel CobraNet interfaces, to drive a major Martin Audio PA, comprising 52 AM3 and four AM15.
“A major challenge for the installation was the huge power needed, but with simple, reliable control and great flexibility,” says Orunas. “Audiotonas looked at a range of options and the TXn series combination of power output and advanced functions meant that they it was far the best solution.
“The main reasons for choosing the TXn series were the fact that they are powerful but with the ability to adjust the required power; convenient control and parameter tracking over a local area network; the ability to measure line load impedances and to control the limits of impedance. In addition, the information that they send back about the system makes tracing any problems very straightforward. They were the ideal amplifiers for the Martin Audio system.”
The ease with which the TXn series can be remotely programmed also makes the entire system easily reconfigurable for the different types of event that the Žalgiris Arena will host.
“The amplifiers make the whole system very flexible. The Arena will host concerts ‘in the round’ as well as with the stage at one end, plus different sports of course have different requirements,” adds Orunas. “The system can be very quickly reprogrammed to accommodate all types of event.”
With basketball club BC Žalgiris using the arena as it’s home venue, one of the first events to be held in the new facility was the playoffs and finals of the 37th European Basketball Championships which took place in mid-September.
“It was a high profile start for the system but it sounds fantastic. Everyone - fans and staff alike - are very happy with it,” says Orunas.