When Rocky Mountain Calvary (RMC) first approached us about doing an audio system upgrade, one of the main areas of concern and they really wanted to focus on was improving coverage in their main worship space and adding intelligibility. We reached out to Danley Sound Labs to have them design a system that would provide just what the church asked for. They did a great job of understanding what the church was after and designing a system to fit that!
The main portion of the sound system was… 1 speaker! Yes, when we told RMC they responded with the same question I’m sure you are asking. “How could 1 speaker cover an almost 2000 seat auditorium?”
Many churches get to a point when growth, new goals, new building, or just equipment age forces them to think about upgrading. Everything might still be working reasonably well, but it’s harder to accommodate new asks or larger worship teams. Or perhaps the equipment is just old enough that parts are no longer available and your confidence in it lasting through a weekend just isn’t there anymore. If this is the case, where do you even start to make a plan? This is really where Lambda comes in. Rocky Mountain Calvary in Colorado Springs hit a point where their equipment was old, goals were changing, and budget was available to make some changes, so they reached out to us looking for an idea of what steps to take next.
When we met up with the RMC tech team, they expressed first of all wanting to upgrade the audio system. The tech team very much wanted a new soundboard and waves audio plugins. When we saw their building though, we noticed speaker system was more than 10 years old and had lost much of the fidelity from when they were installed. They also just didn’t fit the space as well as new technology could. So, we suggested upgrading the speakers first and then replacing the soundboard, integrating waves audio effects, and maybe even some new mics. This would ensure they would have good audio from the absolute start to the end. We met up with the team from RMC several times to build request lists, talk about dreams and goals, and even moving through older equipment talking about what new equipment is capable of. In the end, they decided on upgrading four major areas: Camera lenses and a video switcher, speakers, soundboard, and house lighting. We also discussed future steps such as led walls and staging pieces to add dynamic.
In order to maximize space for this business one of the things we could do was lean to a professional studio design and create a lighting grid. A lighting grid is a system of suspended steel pipes in a crisscross design for hanging lights and other devices from the ceiling. A typical grid has pipes spaced with 4ft gaps proving lots of spaces for mounting anything you would need in a studio. Before trying to rig up a grid in your space make sure to first consult a professional as these need to be set up safely and up to building code. A typical grid for a small space can weigh as much as 800lbs and needs to be anchored correctly to be able to handle even more load than you plan to attach. For this grid, we used special concrete anchors to hold one direction of the grid and another custom grid clamp to join everything together from our favorite people at The Light Source.
Green screens can offer a lot of versatility and open new doors of opportunity to create more content in your studio or gain more experience with your production skills. So, let’s take a look at some of the challenges and benefits of working with a green screen in your space! We recently were able to install a green screen for a corporate studio. Their needs presented a unique set of challenges and benefits to having a green screen in their studio.
So, let’s set the stage: The corporation had set aside a space for a video studio and had the goal to create quality video content to present to the rest of their organization and their network. What they didn’t have was a very large space and being a corporation, they also knew they needed to be able to produce content quickly for more immediate use. Knowing this, using a green screen sounded like a desirable way to get what they needed out of their studio!
Understanding the end goal and use case for any system is crucial to its design and success. Starting with a clear vision allows for figuring out what pathway and components are needed to create a solution that meets the end goal.
At Lambda we have a lot of fun working with clients across the county and if you know us, you know that we have a passion for helping people get the most out of their AV system! We are all about getting equipment that will serve your specific purposes for many years.
Usually, we show you fun gear and installs from our perspective, but we thought it might be interesting to show you things from another perspective. Questions you might be interested in when it comes to planning upgrades before you even begin working with us or just what other churches are doing. We will be showing you a few interviews over the next few months to hopefully answer some questions you might not have even thought to ask. We decided to do a quick interview with a long-time client to get their perspective on working with Lambda and how we were able to provide them with the tools they needed to grow! Summit Church is a mid-size church in Denver with a ton of life and energy. They did a major upgrade with us about a year ago so that the tech could really match what the church itself was already doing. Hopefully, this interview can give you a practical, realistic look at what it’s like to work with an AV Integrator for your business.
How would you describe your role at Summit?
“My job is to bring Pastor Rob Singleton's vision to life. I make sure the teams and processes are in place and moving forward in the right direction.”
Going from a room that has little, to no video tech infrastructure can often seem like a daunting and expensive task. Thankfully as the need has grown for video systems, there have also been new products released to make it much easier for anyone to step into a full video setup without biting the bullet on budget.
The Springs Church, here in Colorado, decided it was time to add a compact streaming setup to a room that was previously offline. They were looking for just such a system; one that would not break the bank or be overwhelming to learn. This new video install not only allowed them to livestream and capture footage from this room but provided more flexibility during events.
Room Intelligibility Fix
Late last year a church approached us about upgrading their audio system as they were encountering issues with intelligibility. They had an old system that was installed back in 1994. It was originally designed to cover both the main area of the sanctuary and a balcony section. However, the balcony did not end up being used for seating which has led to the old speakers having poor coverage in the main seating area and a lack of intelligibility. P.S. that’s the 2nd time I’ve used that word, so I should probably explain what I mean by that. Intelligibility is a fancy word for how clearly you can hear something. Often, it’s most noticeable when someone is speaking, but it refers to the overall clarity of the sound system.
Running from the Constellation we have 2 eight lane fibers, one going to the Broadcast room and one to the video studio. With fiber, there is no need to worry about any issues with the length of your run, as you might have to think about with SDI and HDMI. Fiber is also able to support 4k 60/12G making it a great option for making sure your system is future proof. These lines are run through Blackmagic fiber converters to convert the signal to SDI, giving four inputs and four outputs to and from the switcher in both the broadcast room and studio. One of the greatest features of the Constellation is that all the outputs on the switcher are fully routable Auxs’. That means that outputs from the switcher to the broadcast room and the studio can be used to send multi-view, program, graphics inputs, camera control, or any other content that needs to be fed to the switcher. MSC already had 4 BMD Broadcast cameras so with 4 inputs in the studio all of them can be utilized at the same time if the situation calls for it.
With the studio, we also built out an entirely separate audio system that also had some integration into the sanctuary. In an effort to make onboarding and training new volunteers simple, MSC had already made the decision that they were going to have all of their audio systems, other than the main auditorium, be by Allen & Heath. In the broadcast suite, we put an A&H SQ5 and paired it with an A&H AR2412 digital stage box in the video studio. This gives them very flexible I/O and even the ability to do a full band in the studio space if necessary. Also, in the studio are 4 Shure BLX mics, both lavalier, and handheld. For the last piece, for monitoring in the broadcast suite, we put a pair of Presonus E44 studio monitors at the audio desk and a pair of Presonus Eris E3.5 for the video desk.
Between the first install at MSC and the studio build, MSC has a lot more room and capability to create more professional video content for their growing online needs! Not only does their new set up help them successfully produce content now, but offers further options for them to continue to expand in the future.
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