While it’s not uncommon to re-vitalize a sound reinforcement system that has become outdated or is under capacity due to a growing congregation’s size, it becomes a hard-learned lesson in the importance of choosing the “right tool for the job” when the system in question needs to be replaced because the equipment and the installation weren’t handled properly.
Such was the case at Cincinnati’s Inspirational Baptist Church. After completing their new sanctuary in February 2009, church officials found themselves at the mercy of a sound system that impeded their services.
Determined to rectify the situation, the church determined the only solution was to start over. Their new sound system — a TrueLine line array setup from Greensboro, NC-based WorxAudio Technologies — is what they hoped for.
Nicholasville, KY-headquartered Pro Sound & Lights, a design/build firm that handles system integration of audio, video, and lighting with a focus on the House of Worship and education markets, was contracted to handle the sound system overhaul. Richard Jones, president and CEO for the company, discussed the challenges of the project.
“Inspirational Baptist Church is a vibrant organization with a contemporary, upbeat, musically progressive worship style,” explained Jones. “Services routinely include a sizeable praise band, a praise vocalist group upwards of about eight people, and a 30-voice choir. Music plays a vital role in the church’s worship services. As we observed the original sound system, we discovered a situation where the loudspeakers were poorly placed and the installation, in general, failed to address the nature of the services it was intended for.
“The result was inconsistent sound quality throughout the sanctuary, with numerous dead spots. Because of this, music reproduction lacked the impact church management envisioned and speech intelligibility suffered significantly—all of which undermined their services.”
The sanctuary is configured so that the stage/altar area faces into the width of the room, which is roughly 140 feet wide and 90 feet deep. “While horizontal throw is always important,” says Jones, “this particular arrangement required the new sound system to have broad horizontal coverage, solid music reproduction capabilities, in addition to a high level of clarity for speech. Ultimately, we determined that a compact line array system would make the best choice for this space.”