Arcadia, CA – With its backdrop of the San Gabriel Mountains, Santa Anita Park is considered by many to be the world’s most beautiful thoroughbred racetrack. It hosts some of the most prominent racing events in the United States including the Breeders’ Cup and the prestigious Santa Anita Handicap.
The track’s previous sound system, installed in the late 1990s, used four, pole-mounted loudspeaker clusters aimed back at the spectators. However, after a major renovation in 2013 along with a new press box and additional luxury suites, the pole-mounted loudspeaker clusters faced a wide expanse of newly-added glass causing unwanted audio reflections onto the seating and the track.
In 2014, Santa Anita asked AMT Systems of Santa Clarita, California to propose a new system to eliminate the reflections, add audio coverage in some of the newer areas and upgrade the overall sound quality to meet the expectations of today’s racing fans.
AMT designed a distributed system, using Community R SERIES loudspeakers, to meet these goals. “We knew a distributed system would give us good control and allow us to focus the audio energy on the guests and greatly minimize reflections from the glass surfaces,” said Tim Carlson, President of AMT, “and, by bringing the loudspeakers closer to the listeners, we got a more intimate sound quality with excellent intelligibility.”
The system uses thirteen R2-694, fifteen R2-94 and six R.5-99 loudspeakers distributed under the canopy. “We knew the R SERIES loudspeakers would give us the control and sound quality we wanted,” said Carlson, “and their weather-resistance is unmatched.” AMT also added forty-eight D SERIES model DS5-W surface-mount loudspeakers to provide audio coverage for the Turn 1 Pavilion.
AMT installed new Crown DCI series amplifiers to power the system and retained the track’s existing Peavey NION front-end and DSP. A portable Soundcraft Performer mixer allows system operation from the Winner’s Circle. For events that don’t require the mixer, the system can be operated from NION controls in other locations.
Carlson added, “We were able to conquer the reflection problem and the quality is great for music as well as voice. The track has received lots of positive comments about the new system from racing fans and even from the national anthem soloists!”