University officials recently decided it was time to upgrade the eight-sided building with new sound and video systems
USA - The Fred Bramlage Coliseum, commonly referred to as 'The Octagon of Doom', is a 12,528-seat multi-purpose arena that is home to the men's and women's basketball teams for Kansas State University.

University officials recently decided it was time to upgrade the eight-sided building with new sound and video systems that are in line with state of the art technology. System design company Wrightson, Johnson, Haddon & Williams (WJHW) specified a new sound reinforcement system that features EAW QX Series loudspeakers. Promedia UltraSound, located in Martinez, California handled the installation.

"The existing system was an old, large-format, horn-based, scoreboard cluster that had long outlived its usefulness," explains Mark Graham, WJHW. "The goal was to increase the fan experience with higher quality audio and an upgraded center-hung scoreboard and video presentation."

Because the new scoreboard was considerably larger than the original, Graham had significantly less space to work with on the audio side of the equation. Ultimately he opted to place eight symmetrically spaced clusters of QX500 Series loudspeakers around the perimeter of the scoreboard, taking up minimal space while providing the sound quality and impact the venue required. Each cluster consists of two QX596i and one QX564i loudspeakers.

"The QX is the perfect long-throw loudspeaker for this type of application," he adds. "It's a nice compact box with high output level and because the enclosures are identical, I can keep the system looking and sounding consistent."

EAW's QX500 Series offers five different coverage patterns in identical trapezoidal enclosures loaded with an efficient co-axial mid-high device on a central constant directivity horn. Four Phase AlignedTM 12-inch low frequency transducers are placed in both vertical and horizontal pairs that surround the horn, providing extended pattern control well into the low frequency range.

"The scoreboard clusters cover the majority of the seating in the Coliseum but the school had season highlight banners hanging from the ceiling around the perimeter of the court," adds Graham. "There was some concern that they might block some of the audio coverage to the upper seats. In order to combat that problem, we installed a full delay ring of EAW MK Series loudspeakers to make sure the fans in those seats had the same experience as everyone else."

The MK2300i Series of loudspeakers feature a new, high performance, 3-inch voice coil, 1.4-inch exit compression driver loaded with a selection of six different HF horns. For this application, Graham specified 24 MK2394i to cover the selected seating areas.

"There were challenges to the rigging of everything but Promedia UltraSound came up with a creative solution that handled it perfectly," Graham concludes. "All in all it was a very successful installation and the Kansas State basketball fans are delighted."

(Jim Evans)

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