Approaching 100 years of hosting football matches, Le Stade de la Route de Lorient in Rennes made the decision to install a robust complement of 64 Meyer Sound loudspeakers—making it the first major stadium in France to boast a completely self-powered audio reinforcement system.
With seating for more than 31,000, the stadium is the home of the top tier leagueStade Rennais Football Club. The structure has undergone several renovations since it was inaugurated in 1912, with the last major reconstruction in 2004. Unfortunately, the sound system installed at that time proved difficult to maintain and inadequate for the demands of today's high-energy incidental music and video soundtracks.
Spectaculaires, a diversified event technology company based near Rennes, was called in to consult on a system that would improve coverage and reliability, supply power and bandwidth for convincing music reproduction, and also meet stringent requirements for use as an emergency voice alarm system.
"We have been using Meyer Sound self-powered loudspeakers for our large-scale events throughout Europe and the Middle East," remarks Xavier Pitois, Spectaculaires' technical director and project manager for the installation. "In fact, we had used Meyer systems for several productions at the stadium, so the management was familiar with the quality. Then the challenge was to design a system that delivered the required performance while staying within the budget."
Using the MAPP Online Pro acoustical prediction program, Pitois drafted several system options. The new distributed system employs over-under clusters of two-each UPQ-1P loudspeakers with a total of 36 for the deeper grandstand sections on three sides. A shallower grandstand on the fourth side is covered by 24 split front and rear UPA-1P loudspeakers. Fourteen 600-HP subwoofers are evenly spaced around the perimeter. A point-source cluster of two MSL-4 loudspeakers, intended primarily for emergency voice alert, is aimed out onto the pitch. All loudspeakers are fully weather protected and are equipped with the RMS remote monitoring system. The custom rigging brackets were designed by Spectaculaires.
"Compared to the previous system, they now have much more power, more definition, and excellent coverage at all seats," states Pitois. "Also, the subwoofers make the system adaptable to many special events, and they also provide spectacular sound for advertising in conjunction with the videos."
Pitois also extols the unique advantages of self-powered systems coupled with RMS remote monitoring. "We can confirm instantly that everything in the system is working properly, and know exactly when and where any fault occurs. In an installation like this, it's a very good long-term investment."
Although Stade de la Route de Lorient is the first stadium installation for Spectaculaires, the company's expertise spans a wide range of entertainment and event technologies. Spectaculaires is split into two operating divisions: one specializes in technical logistics and system integration including light, sound, video, and staging, while the other division provides complete event conceptualization, design, and production services.