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Church Sound: When Is It The Right Time To Upgrade A System?

A host of key questions to help answer the original...

By Gary Zandstra September 24, 2015

Photo: Mike Babcock
This article is provided by Gary Zandstra.com.

 
In this ever evolving world of more, more, more, better, better, better, when is good enough, good enough? Is it really an absolute necessity to update or upgrade my 15-year-old sound system? 

The working life of a sound system can extend well beyond 20 years, and I’ve personally seen systems 30 to 40 years old still in use and functioning quite well.

The question deserves considerable thought, and begs a slew of additional questions:

1. Has your programming changed (added a keyboard, drums, bass……..)?

2. Have you added any additional seating, like additional rows of seats in the front or back?

3. Are you experiencing intermittent problems or shall we say, surprise noises?

4. Has the expectation of your congregation changed?

I not a person who promotes technology for the sake of technology.  However, I do enjoy thinking of myself as “hip” and an early adopter.

In fact I owned the original Palm Pilot, one of the first Windows Mobile PDA’s and a Palm Treo Pro phone all purchased right when they were released. 

Oh yeah, I forgot the Apple Performa 405 PC I purchased in the early 90’s, the iMac, and now the Macbook pro…..  Okay you get it, I love new technology and am not afraid to be one of the early one that jumps in, with some caution. 

I am usually not the first, but reside comfortably in the early pack that makes a purchase. I prefer to wait and see the viability and stability of the product.

So what does my personal love of technology have to do with upgrading your sound system? Not much, other than show that I am not an anti-technology kind of guy.

Getting back to the issue at hand. I would like to introduce a fifth question.


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About Gary

Gary Zandstra
Gary Zandstra

Consultant, Dan Vos Construction, Writer for Worship Facilities and ProSoundWeb
   
Gary Zandstra has worked in church production and as an AV systems integrator for more than 35 years. He’s also contributed numerous articles to ProSoundWeb over the past decade.
http://garyzandstra.com

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Aiden Garrett says

To me, the short answer would be “when things stop working” For example, if you’ve got a 15yr old desk and a multicore of a similar age (i doubt you would, but you never know!), you might find you’ve got 8 channels on the multicore that don’t work, and a few on the desk; that would be a good oppurtunity to go digital…

Just my thoughts, anyway!

Aiden

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