Qatar’s oldest sports club is also home to its newest stadium. The 12,000-seat Hamad Bin Khalifa stadium in Doha hosts the Al Ahli SC football team, as well as basketball, tennis, handball and athletics events. Local company Audio Visual Technology (AVT) was responsible fro the design and installation of its A/V and broadcast systems.
The tender won by the Doha-based systems integrator covered the main stadium PA, a multi-purpose hall, conference room, mosque and administration building. ‘This project was under the Ministry of Culture & Sports (MOCS) because the Al Ahli Sports Club Stadium will be used as a training stadium during the 2022 World Cup,’ says AVT MD, Hadi Arzouni. ‘MOCS is involved in all sports venues within the country to ensure they meet the standards and requirement set down by the likes of FIFA and the IOC.’
In many sports stadia, clusters of cabinets are hung from the front lip of the roof to address the seating area, but only the main stand at the Hamad Bin Khalifa stadium has a roof. To counter this, AVT established mounting points for a distributed Renkus-Heinz TRX121/9 loudspeaker/PN112SUB sub system, ensuring coverage for the whole stadium. In the main stand this used the lip of the roof, while opposite a a wall running the length of the pitch provided the optimum installation. Additionally, speakers covering the stadium ends have been flown from regularly spaced poles around the rear of the seating area firing down towards the pitch.
‘Kiran Dias, our sound engineer did the initial design for the stadium,’ says AVT Installation Project Manager, Julien Allag. ‘When the project was awarded to us, we tweaked some of the design based on the existing site conditions. From there we took over as the project team. We have used weatherproof speakers with pigtails so there’s no exposed connection.’
Audio sources for the system include an Allen & Heath GLD-80 digital mixing console, a variety of Sennheiser wireless mics, and an RCF MS1033 CD player. The speaker system is drivern by a rack of QSC power amps. A short walk through the main stand leads to the second major area of the install, the multi-purpose indoor hall, where further Renkus-Heinz TRX121/9 speakers, Sennheiser mics and QSC Q-Sys control are installed. Mixing duties here are handled by an Allen & Heath Zed22FX desk.
‘The main part of the installation took us from March to September 2015,’ Allag says. ‘We have a good team who worked well together on the project and I’m very happy with how everything has turned out.’