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Eastside Foursquare Church Gives Thanks For Soundcraft Vi6

Sep 6, 2007 8:00 AM


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Assistant Engineer Thom Collins (left) and Head Sound Technician Blair Schmautz with the new Soundcraft Vi6 console

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Because church services can vary dramatically from week to week, with PA systems often in the reins of inexperienced volunteer staff, finding the right mixing system for a house of worship can certainly present its share of challenges. However, when the time came to replace a nearly 20-year-old Soundcraft Vienna desk at Eastside Foursquare Church in the Seattle suburb of Bothell, the decision was simple—a Soundcraft Vi6 digital live sound console.

“We were hired as the consultant to look at sound and video systems within the church that could benefit from an update,” says Jeff Sanderson of Olympia, Wash.-based consulting firm Onpoint Designs. “The original console, although it had served the church well, was long overdue for a replacement, as we knew that current-generation technology could offer enhanced sound and reset options. So we recommended three digital designs that we felt provided fairly comparable capabilities and Eastside Foursquare Church chose the Vi6 hands down based on affordability, user friendliness, and processing power.”

Supplied and installed by Morgan Sound of nearby Lynnwood, the Soundcraft Vi6 represents the first phase of an upgrade project that will soon also comprise a new PA system for Eastside Foursquare Church’s 1,250-seat sanctuary.

According to Blair Schmautz, the church’s head sound technician, “The Vi6 is extremely versatile, sounds great, and is easy to use. Our services typically involve more than 40 channels of live instruments and vocals, while for special events, we might use all 64 channels. The desk’s Vistonics II interface brilliantly displays all parameters for 32 channels at a time, which is something I’ve not found on any other digital sound console in this price range.

“We often have large 30- to 60-piece choirs during our Sunday services,” he says, “as well as a medium-sized combo onstage with guitars, keyboards, bass, and drums. All of these things, along with a variety of playback sources for CDs and other media, can be easily accommodated on our new digital console. Plus, we also host concerts here at the church several days a week, which keeps me pretty busy, but the Vi6 effortlessly handles it all.”

Of particular note, the church’s Vi6 benefits from Soundcraft’s new DSP facilities, which bring Lexicon delay/reverb effects and BSS Audio equalization standard to the desk. “The processing card provides us with an array of great-sounding effects,” Schmautz says. “The reverbs sound very realistic—hardly surprising, perhaps, given the Lexicon pedigree—and blend well with natural ambiances. And the delays are truly studio-quality.”



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