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Allen & Heath iLive MixPad for Worship, Part 2

Feb 16, 2012 1:09 PM, With Bennett Liles

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Now what’s the normal production schedule like at the church? How do they go through things and get set up for a Sunday service?

Sunday service, the production schedule is not too difficult. There’s usually a rehearsal during the week that the technical guys are able to sit down with the technical director and go over things and make sure everything’s lined up for Sunday. He already has the schedule on hand, passed down from the staff, so he can go through things with the crew. Video is usually pretty cut and dry. You have your song order and they’re using Propresenter and so Propresenter makes a lot of things easier and with Planning Center Online, everything becomes easier because they get their whole schedule printed out and they can see timelines and all kinds of things like that. But the Dante card helps greatly with the lay-led audio crew because with that 64 channel by 64 channel recording capabilities, they’re able to multitrack rehearsals with a full band and without having to keep the band there and keep the vocalist there and hold them up while they do changes on EQ or training or anything like that. They’re able to multitrack their rehearsal and as soon as they’re done, they can play it right back and it comes right back through the iLive and right back through the channels on which they were recorded from. So they’re essentially, they’re able to do what’s called a virtual sound check and playback a recording back through the house system and remix whatever they want to and they can do training on their time. [Timestamp: 7:39]

Yeah, saves a lot of wear and tear on everybody.

It does; it saves a lot of time and it’s probably one of the coolest features that the Dante card has. [Timestamp: 7:47]

What kind of wireless monitoring gear do they use onstage with the band?

They’re using Sennheiser 300 series wireless monitors with Westone in-ear drivers. Mixture from UM2s to UM3s, which are dual drivers and triple driver in-ear monitors, but yet there are eight Sennheiser wireless in-ear monitor systems located at the stage and they all run in stereo, so each band member is getting a stereo mix and even some band may share one mix, like a horn section may share a mix and our keyboard player and organ player may share a mix, but it’s coming in stereo and each member has their own wireless bodypack. [Timestamp: 8:30]

All right, well it sounds like you really took them up several notches in the sophistication of the production, which is a big deal when you’ve got that many different sound sources and it can be a handful to keep it all under control. So what’s been their reaction to this with the band and the crew? How have they taken to the new setup?

Everyone loves it. It’s really taken the band and the worship team in general to a new level. When you switch to in-ear monitors a lot of things change. You are able to really control your mix and able to hear what you want to hear. There’s not a lot of guessing that goes into place. So you are able to tighten up as a musician and as a vocalist and you are also able to add in things like click track and use multitracks to enhance the worship. This is really taking things to a new level and especially with the technical crew being able to have things like Dante and being able to have the musicians mix their own in ears and not having to stop and ask the FOH guy because in a church the size of First Baptist Church of Altamonte Springs, it’s not a humongous building and like most of your mega churches your 5,000-seat rooms they have a monitor console in addition to their FOH console. But in a medium-size church like First Baptist Church of Altamonte Springs, there’s no space; there’s really not a lot of resources to have someone mixing a monitor console at the same time that you would have somebody mixing FOH. So a lot of churches in that size deal with having to stop and mix monitors for vocalists and mix monitors for band members unless they have an Aviom system. So this really frees up the FOH guy to just focus on the main mix and what the congregation is going to hear. [Timestamp:10:13]

Well, a big improvement for that church and everybody who’s involved in the musical production. So what’s up next for Entertainment Arts? What projects have you got coming up next?

We had a great 2011. A lot of churches we were able to help move to the next level just like the First Baptist Church of Altamonte Springs and we got a lot of projects on the table for 2012. We’re very blessed and very happy to be where God has brought us and being able to help churches and being able to build relationships with churches and help them realize and see the next level that they want to be at. So we have some projects lined up with some churches here in the area and near Lakeland. Churches that are going to be moving out of their mobile church state into a permanent building, which is going to be a big deal for a church here locally. There’s actually just a lot of stuff on the plate even at a time of recession, what we’ve experienced over the last couple of years with the economy, God just continues to work through these ministries and through these churches and they are able to grow and flourish and as a result, God is blessing us with the business from the church. [Timestamp: 11:17]

Well, it was great having you here. John Williams from Entertainment Arts in Orlando, Fla. Thanks for giving us the details on the big upgrade you did for them.

Absolutely, thank you for having me and it’s always a pleasure.

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