Until recently, however, fans strained to hear announcements and cringed at the sound of anemic music coming from the arena’s aged ceiling speakers. That all changed when Finnish A/V integration firm Noretron Communication Ltd. replaced the system with full-fidelity FBT loudspeakers and Ashly Audio processing, amplification, and user control. Shortly after the overhaul, Heinola hosted the Women’s Hockey World Championship to rave reviews.
“The previous system was very old and functioning poorly,” said Timo Kunnas, owner of Noretron Communication Ltd. “Using an Ashly back-end and FBT Shadow loudspeakers, we composed a plan that would give them the control and performance they desperately needed. Part of the challenge was meeting their budget and yet still providing excellent coverage in an acoustically-poor environment.” Noretron, a distributor for both Ashly and FBT in Finland, designed the system, installed the rack, and performed the system tuning at commissioning. Local electrical installation firm Electrowise Ltd. handled all of the cabling and the loudspeaker installation.
“Ashly builds reliable and great-sounding gear and sells it at a price that is very competitive,” said Kunnas. “The Ashly ne24.24M modular processor, Ashly KLR-Series amplifiers, and RD-8C remote fader control would give the arena everything they needed. And for us, it’s all very easy to set up and program.”
Because it has a modular I/O count, Kunnas was able to order an Ashly ne24.24M with twelve inputs and eight outputs to accommodate four microphones, two stereo RCA input jacks, a radio output, and a CD player output. The eight outputs feed four dual-channel Ashly KLR-3200 amplifiers, which in turn power nine FBT Shadow loudspeakers, four for the central cluster and five for delays. User control consists of three redundant Ashly RD-8C remote fader panels that provide individual volume control of each input, plus overall volume control. The three redundant locations allow user control from anywhere that staff may need to make adjustments.
“The client is very happy with the sound quality, speech intelligibility, and ease of use, all thanks to Ashly,” concluded Kunnas.