Diggerland USA is the country’s first construction-themed adventure park, allowing children and their families to operate real construction equipment in a safe environment. The 14-acre park is located adjacent to its sister attraction, Sahara Sam’s Oasis, in New Jersey in the suburbs southeast of Philadelphia. Spellcaster Productions of nearby Hammonton, New Jersey designed and installed the system on a very tight timeframe; from land clearing to opening took just six months. An Ashly Audio ne24.24M modular Protea™ matrix processor outfitted with twelve inputs and twelve outputs provides all of the equalization, delay, ducking and routing for Diggerland USA, and seven Ashly KLR-3200 amplifiers power the park’s seventy-plus Community loudspeakers. Ashly’s networked neWR-5 wall-mount user control allows staff members to adjust input and volume within a given zone, and Ashly’s iPad app gives management complete control of the park’s audio from anywhere via Wi-Fi.
“While I was working on this project, our Ashly rep stopped by,” said Mike Shafer, project manager of Spellcaster Productions. “I showed him what we were up to, and he suggested the ne24.24M processor and the KLR-3200 amplifier. I did my homework and realized that moving to Ashly would save the client some money and would give us all the functionality and power we needed. We also designed and installed the sound system at Sahara Sam’s Oasis, and the client wanted to be assured Ashly would meet the same standard. I assured him that Ashly has been making quality equipment for over thirty years and that they are well known for their reliability. Ashly’s five-year warranty and my positive experiences assured him.”
“The installation was smooth and straightforward,” said Shafer. “Programming the ne24.24M was easy – just a matter of connecting the right nodes and then tuning the system.”
The sound system permits Diggerland USA to play background music and advertisements, either of which will duck for pages made from a Shure wireless microphone or from the park’s phone system. All of the input sources feed the Ashly ne24.24M processor, which in turn feeds a rack of seven Ashly KLR-3200 two-channel amplifiers. The KLR-3200 is rated at 1600W into a 2 Ohm load, 1100W at 4 Ohms or 800 Watts per channel into a 70V line. This versatility makes it a perfect choice to power the Community Sound-centric loudspeaker system. Community D4LP loudspeakers cover indoor areas with low ceiling height, Community DP8 pendant loudspeakers cover a food pavilion and an arcade, and Community R.15 and R.35 loudspeakers throw from light poles to cover the vast outdoor spaces.
The Ashly Remote App for the Apple® iPad or iPad Mini is used to provide the theme park management team with a customized wireless remote control. “I arranged it so that the app’s home page lists each zone with a radio button to select the input source,” said Shafer. “That, together with a volume slider for each zone, allows them to do everything they need to do. Because we gave them Wi-Fi throughout the park, they can make adjustments right there in the park – no walking back and forth to an equipment closet.” For staff within the arcade, the picnic area, and the concession stand, Shafer installed Ashly neWR-5 wall-mount remotes, which allow input selection and volume selection.
“Even some of the less common requests were easy, like a real-time page from a security monitoring company for afterhours if the park’s security system detects movement. The page warns intruders that the police have been called. Since the opening in June, we’ve been back to adjust things as they’ve determined how exactly they want things to function.”