Queen’s Day – or Koninginnedag – is celebrated every year on April 30th and is considered Hollands’s most exciting party. It’s above all the opportunity for the Dutch (and not only them) let themselves go. Music, dancing and rivers of beer fill the streets.
Queen’s Day lasts 48 hours: it begins on April 29th, runs non-stop all day on the 30th (the official Queen’s Day) and ends on the morning of May 1st. This year’s celebrations were two-fold, since Queen Beatrix abdicated in favor of her son, Prince Willem-Alexander.
In the city of Groningen the celebrations were held at the Vismarkt square with its difficult acoustics, notoriously feared amongst rental companies, due to its small width (40 metres) compared to the length (100 metres), and its strict SPL regulation of no more than 85 dB (measured) at the buildings at the side of the square.
Also, the limited height of the PA towers meant an almost impossible task was required to deliver an equal SPL to at least 85% of the designated area. According to the sound engineers involved, the Outline GTO line-source system being used made an incredible job of overcoming these problems and delivered a truly remarkable performance.
The L+R FOH system was composed of nine+nine Outline GTO, 1+1 GTO-DF (Down-fill), sixteen DBS 18-2 subwoofers and six Lipfill 082 compact enclosures – Outline’s latest addition to the GTO family of products, designed to complement the GTO-DF, providing the critical front/lip fill coverage for the first rows. All the above was powered by twenty-four T-11 amplifiers, also from Outline.
The organizing office stated: “It’s been the first year that we’ve served the public area: we were able to fully perceive the singers, loud and clear. The low-end sounded unbelievably powerful yet never annoying”.
Erik Koster of Eko Geluid & lichttechniek, providing the stage equipment, stated: “When we fired up the system I knew that it was great. With all the limits the location did set, we still were able to deliver seamless coverage. The headroom at our disposal was simply astounding”.
Axel Nagtegaal of The Audio Specialists, Outline’s distributor for Benelux and Germany, stated: “Currently, thanks also to the evolution of a market on which loudspeakers are increasingly sturdy and efficient, there is no doubt that almost all PAs effectively sound ‘loud’. One certain GTO prerogative is the ability to ensure intelligible output over long distances: in my opinion higher than any competitor in the market’s large-format PA sector”.