The Snowboard World Championships returned to Valmalenco, Italy, earlier this year, featuring four days of competition down the area’s 60km of ski slopes. Pro Audio specialists Frate Professional were tasked with the event’s audio visual setup, installing a series of ground-stacked arrays featuring RCF HDL 26-A Line Array systems and HDL 35-AS subs.
The championship body had very specific requirements for the event, with Frate Professional ensuring sound reinforcement was present across the entire competition area- including the start and the finish zones. Fabio Frate and his team devised a wireless solution in order to cover the distances of 800 meters between each main diffusion point, enabling the team to avoid long cable runs and prevent cabling crossing through the competition area.
The HDL systems were permanently installed along the snowboarding slope for 5 days, including one day of pre-competition setup. The system ran non-stop for 8 hours a day and was left outdoors, under the snow, every night throughout the championship period, using only the standard rain cover accessory to protect the rear connection panels of each unit.
“RCF assured us the system would work with great ease, as all components are waterproof and can work smoothly in sub-zero temperatures, and it did. At night here, temperatures can go right down to -25°C” said Fabio.
Logistical challenges at the event were not confined to the harsh climate, with accessibility of the ‘stations’ in which the arrays were to be stacked also a major challenge. The HDL system’s low weight offered a strong advantage here. “All of the equipment was transported on the snow, using snowmobiles and snowcats, which, thanks to their load capacity, made it possible to integrate our RCF HDL 26-A units with HDL 35-AS subs, i.e. modules from the same RCF series, for better musical performance. The low end delivered by those small subs is impressive and could be felt even at a great distance.”
“The performance of this small-sized line array is top notch, the audio was clear and intelligible along the entire snowboard slope. I was positively impressed by the reliability of the system. It always delivered maximum performance, even when turned on first thing in the morning, after a night of freezing temperatures!”