A large public area that can host up to 5,000 people outside of Scotiabank Arena in downtown Toronto, the home venue for the NBA’s Toronto Raptors and NHL’s Toronto Maple Leafs, is equipped with a nearly three-story-tall high-resolution LED wall for viewing games outdoors, with accompanying sound reinforcement delivered by Renkus-Heinz ICLive X Series loudspeakers.
“There were a number of critical demands to meet on this project,” says Bill Coons, director at Contact Distribution, who worked to bring the project to life. “The city had an absolute mandate to significantly contain sound below 40 feet due to a nearby residential, hotel and office spaces. Added to that was the criteria that any loudspeaker considered for the project had to be less than 11 inches wide as there was minimal space on each side of the screen. Toss in the harsh weather of Toronto, as well. And, of course, this was in addition to the need to be loud enough to project sound at least 200 feet. The ICLive X quickly became the only system on the market to meet those requirements.”
The system employs 10 weather-resistant ICLive X loudspeakers installed in the left and right lower corners of the square behind a perforated border. Six of them are located on the north side of the screen and four are positioned to the right, with the goal of blanketing the location with sound.
The loudspeakers incorporate the company’s proprietary digital steering technology that helps in directing output to the listening area and keeping it off of reflective spaces, with coverage further optimzed via accompanying RHAON control software.
“A key consideration was that the arrays were specified as being the weather resistant version,” Coons adds. “By upgrading to the ICLive X, the venue gets an added benefit of being constructed from a special 3/4-inch ABS material that’s designed to withstand any environmental situation. That includes the scorching heat of a hot summer afternoon to four months of the year in sub-zero temperatures.”
The project was commissions by the Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment (MLSE) organization to offer a place for fans to congregate during both home and away matches. The official name of the location is Maple Leaf Square – but when the Raptors play it transforms into the colloquially named “Jurassic Park.”
“Our objective with the new, larger screen was to take things up a notch,” concludes Courtney Ross, head of audio at MLSE. “So, of course, we wanted to take the audio up a notch as well. When Brandon Heinz showed up from Renkus-Heinz to personally commission the system he simply loaded all the settings we’d previously engineered in the design phase. In less than five minutes the system was ready to go. We played some music on it and our tech staff instantly knew it was great.”