When the county of Hendricks, Indiana decided to upgrade its fairgrounds facility, it turned to Electrical Equipment Company of Indianapolis for professional services and state-of-the-art technology that would make the new 'campus' capable of facilitating its growing fair audience while providing fair operators with advanced paging and zone combining capabilities.
The new fairgrounds campus comprises 18 new buildings over approximately 15 acres and includes a main administrative building, the grandstands, a horse arena, a cattle arena and several closed and open-air exhibit barns and areas – all of which facilitate a number of different events that make each year's fair fun for all ages. Electrical Equipment Company worked closely with fair operators laid design and install a new AV system that included local and whole-fairground paging capabilities, improved local and centralized control features for easier and faster set up in each venue, and the ability to combine sound reinforcement features of specific buildings and/or venues to accommodate special events.
To create just such a network, Electrical Equipment Company decided on Biamp's Nexia digital signal processor, along with an AudiaSOLO unit, and multiple Volume Select 8 and Volume 8 control panels located throughout the fairgrounds. Electrical Equipment Company was able to create an audio network that was customized for each of the new venues on the fairgrounds, and also provide an element of centralized audio and control for general fair announcements and/or emergency announcements.
"We wanted to create a network that would provide full coverage for this beautiful collection of new facilities," said Gerry Murphy, Director, Sales & Marketing, Electrical Equipment Company. "We were happy to see that the county was ready to make a full investment in the AV capabilities for the fairground. Their commitment allowed us to specify the newest technologies to ensure that the operators could do everything they wanted to, and then some. The finished product is a very unique system with a complexity that isn't apparent to the end-user."
In total, the system comprises five Nexias, one AudiaSOLO, two Biamp Logic boxes, two Biamp Volume Control boxes, four Biamp Volume Select 8 boxes, and two Biamp Volume 8 boxes. These components and control panels are installed across four different sights – The Grandstand, The Horse Arena, The Cattle Arena and The Administrative Building – on the fairgrounds.
One of the key features for the new audio system is the ability to perform paging on different levels. At the broadest level, pages for emergencies or other critical scenarios that require important announcements interrupt the entire system throughout the whole fairgrounds. For less critical pages, the system allows operators to make local, sight-specific pages, so that other facilities aren't unnecessarily interrupted.
To control how pages are distributed, fair operators have a custom-made, Biamp VS8 switch in the fair office, located inside the Horse Arena, which allows them to designate how a page is going to be distributed. A Biamp Logic Box receives this signal, passes it to the local Nexia processor and then distributes it to the appropriate venues via the already laid audio cable. If it is a local page for the Horse Arena, the Nexia processes the signal, feeds it to a Crown amplifier and then out to Atlas speakers.
Chris Smock, Systems Engineer, Electrical Equipment Company, explains, "The ability to 'sort' the different pages is why we decided on a Biamp system. It was too far to run specific cable between the different venues. We installed the Logic Boxes alongside the Nexias in each location so the operator can simply select a preset to designate a page type. Once the page type is selected and the announcement made, the signal is sent to the appropriate venues where the local Nexia is installed so that each different type of page comes in on a different input. The Nexia can sense which input that signal comes in on and prioritize it accordingly.
"Emergency pages interrupt audio in every venue, site-wide pages interrupt audio in every location but the arenas, building-wide pages are for the local venues only and then there are two separate pages designed specifically and only for the arenas."
In the administrative building of the fairgrounds, a separate sound system has been installed to facilitate different functions within the building itself. The building comprises various offices and a general, multi-purpose room that can be used for any number of different functions. The multi-purpose room can be zoned into four separate areas, or the zones can be removed to create an auditorium-like audio setup. Operators can quickly change between zoned presets using a Biamp VS8 panel that interfaces directly with a Biamp Nexia CS processor. The Nexia receives mic and audio inputs and is programmed with eight presets for various settings to optimize the sound in each zoning scenario, including: rooms divided, rooms combined without auxiliary sound system, rooms combined with auxiliary sound system, and a range of different audio curves designed to prevent feedback in each of the different settings.
Employees in the Administrative Building also have the ability to use the phone system for general paging within the building.
About Electrical Equipment Company
Founded in 1926 and headquartered in Indianapolis, Electrical Equipment Company is a full line distributor with a core business that includes four key service components.
As a Systems Integrator covering all market segments, the company's product knowledge and technical expertise make it a valuable partner in the Commercial, Educational, Healthcare and Industrial communities. Electrical Equipment Company specializes in voice, video, data and a testing service center with experience in design, troubleshooting, fabricating, and new equipment sales with 24-Hour emergency service. Additionally, Electrical Equipment Company provides Integration Services including system support and design assistance through its team of specialists, including payback analysis, training, and project management. For more information, visit http://www.eeco-online.com/