Case study: Ohio church upgrades its digital systemAudio/Visual, FEATURE STORIES, Pastor Friendly A/V, TECHNOLOGY Friday, May 30th, 2014
By Lisa Young
The main auditorium at Naz Church in Grove City, OH, seats about 2,800 and has a congregation of 3,000. The church recently installed two Yamaha CL Series Digital Audio Consoles — a CL5 at front of house and a CL1 at monitors — as well as eight Rio input/output boxes: two Rio3224-D, two Rio1608-D, two Ri8s, and two Ro8s. The system was purchased through Boynton Pro Audio (Norwich, NY) and installed by church staff and volunteers.
“This was not our first experience with digital consoles,” says Matt Groves, technical director at the church. “We previously used a Yamaha LS9 at monitors and a Yamaha PM1D at front of house. The purchase of the CL system began when we started looking for a replacement monitor console because our Yamaha LS9 was stolen from the monitor booth. One of our front-of-house engineers — Doug McLaughlin with Tech Art Productions in Columbus — suggested we purchase a CL Series, and after researching it more, we discovered how functional it would be for us. Our audio engineers are volunteers with previous digital console experience on our LS9 and PM1D, so the only training required was to watch the self-training videos on
the Yamaha website. The setup and operation of the CL system was very user-friendly.”
The Church of the Nazarene has both traditional and contemporary services. The traditional service consists of an 80-member choir, a 15-piece orchestra, a rhythm section (with a five- piece drum kit, two digital keyboards, bass, two acoustic guitars, one electric guitar, synth/tracks), and seven main vocalists. The contemporary service consists of a five-piece drum kit, digital keyboard, bass, acoustic guitar, two electric guitars, synth/tracks, and four vocalists.
“Because of the many components each service style presents, we felt it was a good opportunity to start our CL system upgrade,” Groves says. “We decided to purchase a CL1 with a Rio3224-D first to replace the monitor console, and our master plan was to eventually purchase a CL5 for front-of-house. A couple of weeks after installing the CL1, we began having major issues and failures with our then-existing analog wiring and patch bays, so we decided to accelerate the completion of our system and purchased the CL5 along with the seven additional Rio boxes.”
Groves says the features that determined the church selection of the CL Series was the Dante networking and the ability to bypass the old/existing wiring. “The use of the Dante system is so functional for us as a church,” he says. “Since we run two very different style worship services and host many events and concerts throughout the year, having the Dante network gives us the flexibility we need. We also needed to replace the existing wiring and patch bays, so being able to run a redundant network with Cat5e cable between the consoles and Rio boxes was a huge cost savings for us. Our system now sounds the cleanest it has ever sounded.”
The church also upgraded part of its video system infrastructure using Ross Video’s Carbonite 2M 24 Switcher MultiMedia Edition. The video control room is home to the switcher, along with two 60-inch Panasonic plasma displays for multi-viewer use with the Carbonite, along with three 24-inch LCD displays for preview use. The church staff records to two solid-state hard drives using Blackmagic’s Hyperdeck Studio Pro. Four Mac Pros are used for video playback, lyric projection and live streaming of services, using Livestream as their streaming service provider.
“We currently run five cameras,” Groves notes. “However, these are still our older cameras [three Sony D-30s and two Canon XH-A1s]. Right now, we’re meshing our standard-definition cameras with the high-definition infrastructure, which took some doing, but works great now after some trial-and-error and many converters.”
With regard to the new Yamaha system, Groves said the system has unbelievable clarity. “It’s amazing when you have the system on and can’t tell it’s on,” he says. “Before the installation, our system was pretty noisy from the analog wiring and patch bays, but now there is no noise at all. The clarity and depth of sound we’re getting from this system is amazing!”
Lisa Young is a publicist for Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc.