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Installation Trends: Expanding Worship

Jan 1, 2009 12:00 PM, By Kent Morris

How recent AV upgrades to two churches meet the needs of growing communities.


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To keep audio and music in sync, Northeast Projections’ John Powell spec’d and installed a 
Thomson Grass Valley Turbo iDDR and Indigo switcher. The necessary AV-over-fiber conversion, transmission, and reception are covered by a Hall Research HR-722A extender.

To keep audio and music in sync, Northeast Projections’ John Powell spec’d and installed a Thomson Grass Valley Turbo iDDR and Indigo switcher. The necessary AV-over-fiber conversion, transmission, and reception are covered by a Hall Research HR-722A extender.

From initial contact to finished installation, the project lasted more than a year, with numerous design changes required to fit the budget and meet new needs.

NPi's lead installer, Roger Spitale, used his years of hands-on experience to successfully guide the most difficult aspect of the installation: running the four-core, multimode 62/125 fiber up, around, and through the building. The fiber's destination, termed the “RNC Room” by the church, serves double duty as a youth room during the rest of the week, while its origin point — a classroom-turned-control booth — resides behind and below the stage. Connecting the two rooms required Spitale and his team to route the fiber through conduit, over doorways, onboard a purpose-built raceway, and in a drop ceiling above an adjacent hallway.

As with all fiber-based installations, the install crew had to avoid direct turns while delicately terminating the fiber lines. To ease the process, the team used Mohawk's Connectors & Field Breakout gel-based termination kit with excellent results.

“The Mohawk system reduced our terminal burn in spades,” Madden says. “In fact, we saved money on the material and labor, while delivering a better product to the client.”

Madden's foresight in using four-core fiber also paid off handsomely for the church, since the system is now prewired to allow worshipers in the sanctuary to see the reaction of the overflow attendees with the addition of a few future components.

While NPi was busy planning and installing the video system, the church staff was not standing still. Chad Doran, Open Door's pastor of worship arts, was tasked with developing a second worship team to lead the music in the RNC Room. Typically, worship teams model sports teams with first-string players onstage the majority of the time and a second string filling in when necessary. However, adding a remote site is equivalent to starting a second team, with the accompanying need for a redundant roster of players. Thus, Doran had to develop enough depth in his musicians to field two teams simultaneously.

When separated into two rooms, though, even the best bands cannot begin and end songs at same moment. Therefore, designers were forced to implement a method of recording, forwarding, and playing video imagery independently in each locale. Fortunately, NPi employs John Powell, a veteran broadcast and video specialist with an impressive roster of satisfied clients. His solution is centered on a Thomson Grass Valley Turbo iDDR and its powerful record-and-forward capacity.

In practice, the sanctuary purposely starts its service a moment before the remote site, thus allowing the Turbo to spool up a minimum 8-second lead on the remote so the second room can be free to end the music as appropriate. Switching duties are handled by a Thomson Grass Valley Indigo, while the necessary AV-over-fiber conversion, transmission, and reception are covered by a Hall Research HR-722A extender. The Hall Research product was chosen for its reliability and ease of installation. An array of Extron Electronics pieces — including a P/2 DA4xi, a pair of P/2 DA2s, an SW2 VGArs switcher, and two DVI-RGB interfaces — complete the system. The Extron switcher's automatic input switching capability grants the church technician-free rehearsals, since the MediaShout operator only needs to generate output from the computer for the image to be seen on the primary screens.



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