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CASE STUDY: Amsterdam ArenA

Now rates as one of the best installations in Europe.

Published: 26/06/2017

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Peavey Commercial Audio worked with renowned speaker manufacturer d&b audiotechnik to bring the ultimate stadium audio system to Holland’s vibrant capital.


The Amsterdam ArenA is the largest stadium in the Netherlands. Under its retractable roof it provides seating for 54,000 to watch home team Ajax dominate Dutch football, or 68,000 concert and event goers to see U2, the Rolling Stones and the inaugural Drone Racing World Series in 2017.

From the outset, it was clear that the Amsterdam ArenA was going to set new standards for Stadium Audio Visual. A wholly new speaker system was to be implemented, with four manufacturers invited to tender for the project.

Production manager at Amsterdam ArenA, Tim Oosterop and Head of Technology Martin Wielaart, defined three main objectives for the new system:

-          Compliance, to UEFA/ FIFA regulations for performance and intelligibility, and adherence to safety standards for evacuation systems

-          Address the venue’s unique acoustics, difficulties that in realistic financial terms would be challenging to overcome 

-          Enhance the stadium’s reputation as a host of other entertainment events – especially concerts 

With no compromise on quality, Oosterop selected German speaker manufacturer d&b audiotechnik to partner with the latest MediaMatrix control suite. MediaMatrix and Crest Audio serve as the ‘backbone’ to the PA-VA system, which is responsible for processing, distributing & controlling all analogue and networked audio channels across the site while Crest Audio CKi amplifiers feed the sound to various zones across the venue - including back of house offices, hospitality boxes and other public zones.

The crux of the challenge was to introduce new high performance audio and control in the stadium ‘bowl’ area, for this - custom software was required for total harmony between the processing stage (MediaMatrix) and the latest d&b amplifier and speaker systems.

Working closely with d&b’s engineers, Lee Freer – application engineer for Peavey Commercial Audio - helped to design a downloadable plug-in that brings total uniformity between the systems. Lee explains: “MediaMatrix is a networked DSP and control system that is scalable, efficient and tailored to the needs of the user. Adding d&b to the MediaMatrix plug-in library gives our customers another great option when specifying and designing our Nion based solutions.”

Available now as a download, the new d&b amplifier plug-in for MediaMatrix provides control parameters to adjust the mute status, levels, power On/Off, and alter the AmpPreset. This enables the complete system to be configured as a highly intelligible system for speech reproduction, and, via a simple button, reconfigured for full program material.

Critical status information can be monitored, ensuring the same is suitable as a PA-VA system in an emergency situation. MediaMatrix logs all audio connections to amplifiers, and the operating state of connected loudspeakers.

Stadium AV investment is a growing trend as systems are upgraded to meet new safety standards, as well as providing better quality and more efficient management. On this front, the Amsterdam ArenA now rates as one of the best installations in Europe.

The d&b plug-in for Peavey MediaMatrix is available now on the d&b audiotechnik, and Peavey MediaMatrix websites.