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Shure enters the NRL Grand Final

Shure enters the NRL Grand Final

Shure enters the NRL Grand Final


During the NRL Grand Final at the ANZ Stadium in Sydney, the Canberra Raiders competed against the Sydney Roosters for over 80,000 spectators and for many more who watched the broadcast live. With the help of radio frequency manager Peter Twartz, production provider JPJ and the Shure Axient Digital and PSM1000 IEMs supplied by Jands, the event went by smoothly despite the hostile RF environment.

‘At the NRL Grand Final, we had Channel 9 and NEP working on the TV broadcast, and ABC radio, Triple M, the Continuous Call Team from Macquarie and NRL Nation, all using radio frequencies,’ outlined Twartz. ‘In the stadium, we had Encore Event Technology and AVE running 36 channels in function rooms between them, all just a sheet of glass away from the field. Add to this multiple news crews and others using wireless mics. While we try hard to document and manage them all, some make it past us on the day. This is where Shure Axient Digital and all of its spectrum management tools is a life saver.’

JPJ’s RF set up included four handheld ADX2 transmitters for the main vocal channels. The Showlink control system was also used to enable parameters that could be changed remotely. A site-wide, fibre-optic network that carried Dante and MADI for interconnectivity was also deployed, while three AXT600 Axient Spectrum Managers were used for monitoring and controlling each tier of the stadium.

Surprisingly, the whole system required only two antennas to cover the entire ground. ‘The MCs could go up to level seven on the far side of the stadium and do an interview with their ADX2s,’ explained Wayne Mulder, engineering coordinator for JPJ. ‘Nothing else could have given us that kind of coverage. We didn’t have to run in Quadversity mode and use four channels for one transmitter, but the option was there. Just running in dual-frequency diversity mode gave us peace of mind, because you never know when a random reporter is going to turn their RF device on.’

‘We wouldn’t use anything else but Shure Axient for this kind of application,’ added Mulder. ‘The mics have to work when millions are watching, and Axient Digital’s performance is flawless. I trust Axient completely – it turns on, does what it says it’s going to do and, even in the crazy, hostile RF environment of the NRL Grand Final, it’s bulletproof.’

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