The Meadow Gardens recreation centre had the original sound system installed sometime in the 1990s, consisting of a staggering 24 Peavey 12” 2-way speakers over the ice surface and the spectator seating. With very little sound absorbing material within the arena itself, the audio was acceptable when standing directly under a speaker, but off axis the intelligibility suffered greatly due to the arena having 24 sources of echo and reverb.
In addition, the installation of the Peavey speakers was as iffy as we’ve ever seen in our 37 years of managing commercial installs. The Peavey speakers were not designed to be hung, so the original installation company placed 1 ½” conduit between the Wilson joists, unsecured at either end, and then used conduit clamps around the conduit, screwed into the back of the pressboard cabinets to secure them. When we removed the screws, they were all rusted as they were not galvanized. Fortunately, they all came down without incident.
We replaced the Peaveys with a central cluster of four Community 15” 2 way speakers, and four Community R.35 speakers for the spectator seating area. The spectator seating speakers were installed with time delays via the digital signal processor in the new Lea 4 channel amplifier that provided 350 watts per channel. The time delay ensured that the sound out of the spectator seating hit the spectators simultaneously as that from the main speaker cluster, thereby increasing intelligibility.
The new Lea Connect354 amplifier automatically reverts to an energy saving mode when not being used, reducing heat and power consumption of the sound rack.