At the Smáralind Shopping Mall, one of the country’s largest, located in Kópavogur—Iceland’s second-largest city—the Iceland-based distributor, installer and retailer ID Electronic ehf was hired to lead the upgrade of its PA system. Currently boasting more than 70 shops and restaurants, the mall had been plagued by a subpar public address system since the facility’s doors opened in 2001. With the goal of putting problems such as amplifier failures in the past, the mall’s management set out to overhaul the system.
The problem, as Ingo Arnarson, President of ID Electronic, saw it, was that the upgrade plans did not include replacing the loudspeakers. The solution had to meet STIPA standards, but also significantly improved the quality of the old loudspeakers. Prior to the upgrade, the system’s audio was used primarily for courtesy announcements and evacuation directives. The upgrade plans, however, called for more advanced capabilities. With the safety of shoppers in mind, the system needed to support an A/B network with interleaved loudspeaker circuits that ensured the entire system would not be brought down due to a single point of failure.
For configurable signal processing, Arnarson selected Harman’s Soundweb London BLU-800s—all of which are served by the IDX controller. (The IDX system is a hardware-software offering that takes audio components and combines them with the information delivery system.) There are also three DT-715 paging stations and a DCi8|300 network. The IDX 200 server, which is the system’s core component, provides four channels of simultaneous message playback to different zones, is central to all paging commands and hosts the message announcements.
“IDX uses CobraNet, the digital audio distribution protocol. That allows audio to be streamed over Ethernet, which is a key advantage because it makes it possible to connect the paging system to the existing network infrastructure. Also, this is all relatively easy to install,” Arnarson stated.