WOLFSBURG, Germany - December 2002 -- The world's first audio system utilizing the new Ethernet-based IQ Network protocol, dubbed "TCP/IQ," was recently unveiled at Volkswagen Arena. The new 30,000 seat arena, home field for the VfL Wolfsburg soccer team, boasts numerous innovative architectural features for soccer, and is intended to quickly establish itself as a premier venue for both national and international competition. However, the city also wanted the venue to accommodate other events such as concerts and festivals. The audio system was designed to take advantage of the latest and most advanced technology available to deliver truly outstanding performance, and at the same time be easily reconfigured for other events.

Siemens AG of Laatzen was responsible for the design and installation of the audio system. Thomas Engler, Project Lead for Siemens, and Christian Kimmig consulting for Audio pro Heilbronn, collaborated on the network portion of the design.

The IQ Network portion of the system consists of six BSS PS 8810C digital mixer/processor units implementing CobraNet® audio routing, along with forty-four Crown CTs Series amplifiers fitted with IQ-PIP-USP3CN modules. Both IQ Network communication and the digital audio are transported via a common 100 Mbit Ethernet network, made possible by the proprietary "single-click" solution provided by TCP/IQ. Using digital audio afforded the system designers significant advantages, not the least of which being greatly reduced material and labor cost for the cable plant infrastructure. 

Nick Owen, Sales Director for Europe/UK, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) for Crown International noted: "In designing our new IQ Network, and specifically the TCP/IQ protocol, we took advantage of what we've learned about network audio system control and monitoring over the years, and created a system that works on stable, off-the-shelf Ethernet network technology which is common worldwide. The end result is the worlds first true "single-click" digital audio control and transport network, operated by one single, simple to use and free software package, IQwic."

All digital audio routing, as well as filtering and amplifier setup, was done using IQwic. IQwic also allows the system designer to create Custom "Control Pages" to provide a simple Graphical User Interface (GUI) environment for operators, giving them only the appropriate monitoring information and system control for their needs, and within a few clicks. This made operator training easy, and also assures reliable system performance when changes are made to the setup. 

Kimmig stated: "It took some work to get this system accepted in that installation, because we have a lot of other network systems here which are in other stadiums and buildings, but in the end, I was able to show how easy the system works and how flexible the routing is. The ownership is very happy, because they have "total control" of the system."

Crown International, a Harman International company, manufactures amplifiers, microphones, and systems control products for professional audio markets worldwide, with corporate headquarters located in Elkhart, Indiana. For more information, please visit Crown online at www.crownaudio.com

BSS Audio, a Harman International company, is a leading British manufacturer of signal processing systems, serving professional audio markets worldwide. For more information, please visit BSS Audio online at www.bss.co.uk

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