Nexo and Yamaha provide audio for Toyota Stadium, Japan
With its capacity of approximately 44,400, the Toyota Stadium in Aichi Prefecture is one of the largest football stadiums in Japan. A major upgrade of its sound system was undertaken in preparation for the 2019 World Cup for rugby for which it was selected as one of Japan’s hot venues. M&H Laboratory undertook design and sound consulting for the project and it specified Nexo loudspeakers and amplifiers along with Yamaha electronics.
The loudspeaker system primarily features Nexo Geo S12-ST line array modules which have been installed among the steel beams of the stadium structure. In addition to providing music and sound, the speakers are also used to amplify the pitch-side interviews, so speech clarity was a priority for the designers, as well as high SPL to provide the volume needed to handle loud cheering and applause.
Yoshiteru Mimura, president of M&H Laboratory, explained: “This is an environment with a large amount of reverberation and echo. That makes it difficult to ensure clarity with even volume and sound quality. Before the upgrade, we took measurements in listening tests, and there were several areas in the stands where it was difficult to hear the sound. To solve this, we not only replaced the existing speakers, but also increased the actual number of speakers, thoroughly adjusted the sound quality and corrected the distance. The main goal was to improve sound clarity.”
At the Toyota Stadium, the Nexo system is fixed over a large number of locations, starting with an 11-module main array facing the pitch. For the main stand and the back stand, there are identical arrays of six modules, all positioned near the edges of the large roof. Smaller three-module arrays are directed at the front row of seats, with additional sets of arrays behind the seats, for auxiliary use.
All of these positions use Geo S12-ST, which can be found in the south and north side stands. Nexo’s PS15-R2 and PS10-R2 cabinets are used in numerous locations as point sources. For auxiliary use, another 48 units of the PS10-R2 speaker are positioned on the balcony edge around the perimeter, can be activated.
Masahiro Hori, sound operator for the Toyota Stadium, said: “I can clearly feel the difference between the previous speakers and the Nexo speakers. It feels like the Nexo speakers are never strained for sound. We also thoroughly corrected the level and time alignment, but the sound has much greater clarity than before. I also think a big improvement point is how we reduced the echo through appropriate adjustments.”
All the Nexo equipment, line array and point source loudspeakers, has been supplied by Yamaha Sound Systems, which has also delivered a Yamaha CL5 digital console as the main mixer in the Toyota Stadium operation room. With Nexo’s NXAMP4x2Mk2 series amplifiers spread out amongst different amp rooms in the four corners of the stadium, there is significant distance between ops room and amp rooms. The Dante network has been converted to optical fibre for transmission.
Mimura concluded: “The Nexo speakers have higher efficiency than the previous ones, so we can output louder sound than before. Something that is important in this kind of facility is durability. Speakers in this kind of facility often break due to exposure to wind and rain. With the new Nexo system, we are able to achieve theatre-class high sound quality even in severe conditions.”