To better serve the audiences of the many concert acts coming through AT&T Stadium in Dallas — the world’s largest domed stadium that’s the home of the Dallas Cowboys — the venue’s already large-scale sound reinforcement system has been expanded with the addition of Electro-Voice XLC line arrays on delay to deliver smoother coverage and improved intelligibility to the upper level seating.
When the Cowboys opened the 100,000-capacity stadium in 2009, it was outfitted with the largest Electro-Voice sound system in a permanent installation, including over 240 line array loudspeakers from the X-Line family. The design team, headed by Kevin Day of WJHW (Dallas), implemented the EV loudspeakers, with control provided by the IRIS-Net processing and monitoring platform. After approval from team owner Jerry Jones, Pro Media Audio Video was enlisted to help coordinate the challenging installation.
“We’re always working to improve the fan experience for all events, not just on game days,” says Gary French, audio engineer in charge for the Dallas Cowboys. “Most concert tours augment their traveling systems with our EV arrays as the delay system for the upper levels. We decided a little extra coverage would be a big upgrade for those events.”
The Cowboys’ audio team worked with system programmer Richard Bratcher, along with original design and installation partners including Day of WJHW, head engineer Demetrius Palavos and COO Ted Leamy of Pro Media Audio Video (based in Denver), and the Electro-Voice engineering team. Together, they determined that 14 EV XLCi127DVX (compact 3-way) modules would provide the desired improvement.
Ted Leamy of ProMedia Audio Video reports that the recent upgrade went very smoothly. “This project is a great example of using real-world experience hand-in-hand with predictive computer models to improve a system,” he says. “By listening to the customer, we find ways to improve a system that already sounds great. We’re all extraordinarily pleased at the increased intelligibility we achieved.”
The upgrade includes two XLC arrays on each side of the stadium, plus the addition of one more loudspeaker element to the 14 existing arrays serving the 400 level, for a total of 54 added boxes. The system is also bolstered with 20 additional Electro-Voice TG series amplifiers, each equipped with RCM-26 remote control DSP modules. One additional NetMax N8000 digital matrix controller was also added. The IRIS-Net platform’s proven stability and scalability was a key factor in the expansion.
“Having used this system for every type of event, it’s amazing how flexible it is,” adds French. “We’ve had no real issues with it this whole time, and Electro-Voice is there for us whenever we decide to tweak something. After 10 years, everything still looks and sounds new and I’ve been really happy with it. You can’t ask for more than that.”