Formula One at Silverstone with Electro‑Voice

August 22, 2012
  • 125,000 spectators last month experienced thrilling Formula One racing with Electro-Voice at Silverstone
  • In addition to a fixed installation above the victors’ rostrum, the production involved the provision of sound reinforcement for the fringe programme
  • The solutions featured XLC-DVX line-array elements with FIR Drive, Xsubs and TG7 power amplifiers

Silverstone is as integral a part of the history of Formula One as the tyres are of the racing cars themselves; it was, after all, at this 6km course in 1950 that the first ever Formula One race was staged, and the Northamptonshire track has remained ever since one of the preferred venues for major events. This year’s British Grand Prix, for example, at the beginning of July, saw Red Bull’s Mark Webber triumph in front of a crowd of 125,000, with an estimated six million in Germany alone following the race on TV.

“It was a production of the very highest quality”

An important contribution to the success of the high-speed spectacle was played by sound reinforcement systems from Electro-Voice – in three different locations. The first was the victors’ podium, where a fixed installation from Electro-Voice provided crystal-clear coverage. Here intelligibility was paramount, with no less a figure than motor-racing legend Sir Jackie Stewart on hand to interview the winning trio of Mark Webber, Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Vettel following the presentations. The quality of musical reproduction, however, was also important, as the playing of the national anthems of the victorious teams was naturally part of the ceremony. Both these challenges were met by an Electro-Voice EVF system comprising two EVF-2151D-BLK and four EVF-1122D/96 BLK cabinets installed in the roof above the podium, driven by an Electro-Voice Q Series  power amplifiers and a DX46 processor. A small, but fine, installation. And a premiere with it, as it was the first time the “D” models of the EVF series had been deployed not only in Great Britain but also in Europe in general.

During the fringe programme, too, this year at Silverstone, it was Electro-Voice that set the tone. As was the case at the Moto GP in mid June, a concert stage had been erected from which professional quality sound reinforcement was expected at all times, and, once again, it was the Warwickshire-based installation company 360 Creative Event Solutions (CES) that came up with the requisite solutions. The stage programme combined bands playing live with interviews. The Silverstone stage was also used for the BBC’s Red Button Show, which was broadcast live and followed by millions of viewers.

“The production was a very demanding one,” says Neal Allen, Concert Sound Sales Consultant, Bosch Pro Sound UK, “not only because it involved playing to an enormous crowd with sound of the highest possible intelligibility, but also because races were often continuing nearby and the level of ambient noise was therefore extremely high.”

For the show stages, the team from 360 Creative Event Solution opted for an Electro-Voice system enhanced by FIR Drive. Twenty-four FIR-Drive-enhanced XLC-DVX elements combined here with eighteen Xsubs and the same number of TG7 power amplifiers for the main system, but to ensure even coverage throughout the entire audience zone, a delay tower was also erected. This was armed with twelve Electro-Voice XLC-DVX line-array elements (also with FIR Drive) and six Xsubs, driven by eight TG7 power amplifiers. Flawless front and side fill as well as foldback were provided by equipment from Electro-Voice, again, complemented this time by an XA2 system from DYNACORD.

Additionally, both the new and old wings of the Silverstone racecourse comprise a NetMax N8000 and CPS 8.5 multi-channel amplifier installation. Replacing the previous 100 V line system, the installed system allows the whole site to be serviced from a central control room on one interactive screen.

“It was a production of the very highest quality,” says Neal Allen, “and it appears that we, together with 360 Creative Event Solution, passed the test with flying colors. The client, at any rate, was extremely satisfied, as is shown by the fact that discussions are already under way for next year’s race productions.”

Equipment list Silverstone June/July 2012 Main System

24 x Electro-Voice XLC-DVX triamp line-array elements with FIR Drive

18 x Electro-Voice XSub 2 x18 bass enclosures

18 x Electro-Voice Tour Grade TG7 amplifiers (2 x 3500 W)

Delay Lines

12 x Electro-Voice XLC-DVX triamp line-array elements with FIR Drive         

6 x Electro-Voice XSub 2 x18 bass enclosure                                         

8 x Electro-Voice Tour Grade TG7 amplifiers (2 x 3500 W)

Front Fill

6 x Electro-Voice XLE compact line-array elements with FIR Drive

2 x Electro-Voice Tour Grade TG5 amplifiers

Side Fill Dynacord XA2 system Monitoring 16 x Electro-Voice Xw15A bi-amped 15”+2” with FIR Drive

1 x Electro-Voice QRx218S (drum sub)

8 x Electro-Voice Tour Grade TG5 amplifiers                                               

snapshot, gm, August 2012

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