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Author Topic: Bare Bones PA System  (Read 7397 times)

Jim Academy

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Bare Bones PA System
« on: June 29, 2012, 11:28:30 am »

First post on this forum.

We are a small manufacturer of church furniture including pulpits and lecterns.

We are looking for a PA system that can be incorporated into our products.

Simplicity is the key, turn on and volume are about all the features we require. A rack or shelf mounted amplifier. A wired microphone that can be desk mounted and speaker units that we can install into our own cabinetry.

The system must be capable of filling a small church or community hall.

Any enthusiasts or DJs out there that have assembled such a set-up that can point us in the right direction?
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Scott Carneval

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Re: Bare Bones PA System
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2012, 01:27:22 pm »



The system must be capable of filling a small church or community hall.

Is this for spoken word only, or will you need to incorporate music playback?  That is going to be the game changer.  Spoken word you can accomplish with a good 10" or 12" driver and a horn.  Music will need to add a sub and an appropriately sized cabinet to get the necessary LF extension.   

You can certainly make this 'work', but there are many reasons why is isn't a good idea.  You'll have issues with even coverage, you probably won't be able to get the lectern above the audiences heads unless it's a really tall stage AKA large venue, in which case your system won't be enough.  A horn with a wide enough dispersion to cover the entire front row won't have enough 'throw' to reach the back.  If, for any reason, the lectern is set to the side of the stage (like for video playback) the sound coverage will be impacted. 

There is at least one other company who made a lectern with a speaker built in, I can't recall the name but I'm sure you can google it.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2012, 01:33:07 pm by Scott Carneval »
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Samuel Rees

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Bare Bones PA System
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2012, 01:47:02 pm »

You are going to need to change your user name to your real full name ASAP or your thread will be locked.
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Brad Weber

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Re: Bare Bones PA System
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2012, 02:34:08 pm »

First post on this forum.
As noted, also possibly your last unless you follow the forum rules and use your real name.  8)

We are a small manufacturer of church furniture including pulpits and lecterns.

We are looking for a PA system that can be incorporated into our products.
So something similar to the products offered by Sound-Craft, Anchor Audio, Marshall Furniture and so forth?

Simplicity is the key, turn on and volume are about all the features we require. A rack or shelf mounted amplifier. A wired microphone that can be desk mounted and speaker units that we can install into our own cabinetry.
No music sources or inputs for such sources and no wireless microphone option, just the one wired microphone?

The system must be capable of filling a small church or community hall.
How large are your pulpits and lecterns?  What open space is available?  That may dictate what is feasible in terms of speakers.  And it has been an issue in several of my recent projects as people seem to currently all want slim, low profile furniture and that often has very limited available space.
 
Any enthusiasts or DJs out there that have assembled such a set-up that can point us in the right direction?
This is posted in the "Installed Sound/Contracting" foum of "ProSoundWeb - News and Information for the Audio Professional" so if you really want input from DJs and enthusiasts then this may not be the most effective place to get that.
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Jim Academy

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Re: Bare Bones PA System
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2012, 07:32:59 am »

First name added...

Thanks for your responses.

Scott
Yes spoken word only However, you bring up a good point about a music input, useful between sermons and while waiting, worth considering.

Most of our products are currently used without amplification. The speakers can be very vocal when it comes to getting their messages across. However we are getting a few requests for this sort of product

We thought of the possibility for larger rooms having plug-in extension speakers finished in a similar material to the speakers stand.

Also, This is popular in Europe, mainly Germany, where we are opening a sales office which is why we are considering the upgrade.

Brad
Thanks for the warning

I will check out the companies you have listed. Thanks

The lecterns vary from the slim where only a microphone and amp could be mounted to the large where inbuilt speakers should not be a problem Also external speakers as mentioned above.

It is hard to know where to get good advice when you are outside an industry so apologies if my post is not best directed.

But nevertheless going to the professionals is best practice.
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Brad Weber

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Re: Bare Bones PA System
« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2012, 08:27:37 am »

I will check out the companies you have listed.
You might note that they seem to use two different approaches.  Some make the audio an integral part of the furniture while others include provisions to support packaged sound systems.  They each have their pros and cons.
 
One thing to keep in mind with speakers integrated into a lectern or pulpit is that unless the lectern or pulpit is on a raised stage then the speakers are usually below ear level for the listeners.  That may be fine for the closest listeners but may mean that folks further away have the direct sound blocked by those seated or standing in front of them and that much of what they hear may be indirect sound reflecting off the walls and ceiling, which in turn means lower intelligibility or more difficulty understanding what is said.  Satellite speakers that can be on stands and possibly even raised and aimed down may provide much better results for larger audiences.
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George Friedman-Jimenez

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Re: Bare Bones PA System
« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2012, 10:15:06 am »

Good furniture has a much longer useful lifetime than a good sound system. Especially given the rapid progress of the digital world of sound reinforcement, mixers and signal processing equipment (and possibly even amplifiers and speakers) will be obsolete before it is even time to refinish your furniture for its next decade of faithful service. Others may have more inside info than I do about how much longer the standard 19" wide rack convention will be with us, but it might make more sense to build in mounting hardware, shelves, wire holes, etc than to actually integrate a specific set of sound reinforcement hardware that may become a dinosaur in 10 years or less.
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John Roberts {JR}

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Re: Bare Bones PA System
« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2012, 10:19:49 am »

Some major install product manufacturers sell dedicated church product lines. It is a huge industry so there are already many products.

You may be able to private label some versions of their existing mixer/amplifier products to fit in convenient cubbyholes. Speakers will obviously be separate and free standing.

JR

PS: The list is incomplete, perhaps pick up a few church magazines and look at the ads, to see how many other manufacturers target that market.

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Jim Academy

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Re: Bare Bones PA System
« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2012, 10:25:46 am »

many thanks again...

From the above I am beginning to like the idea of a packaged system where the speakers can be housed within the body of the lectern for storage and wheeled out, possibly on stands when required. Just need to identify the right combo.

Should it be a  concern that feedback could be a problem with speakers and microphone being mounted on the same cabinetry or has technology eliminated this?
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: Bare Bones PA System
« Reply #9 on: June 30, 2012, 11:11:27 am »

many thanks again...

From the above I am beginning to like the idea of a packaged system where the speakers can be housed within the body of the lectern for storage and wheeled out, possibly on stands when required. Just need to identify the right combo.

Should it be a  concern that feedback could be a problem with speakers and microphone being mounted on the same cabinetry or has technology eliminated this?

Hi Jim-

Is feedback a possibility?  Absolutely.  The proximity of the microphone and loudspeaker contribute to this and the variety of presenter techniques is a significant factor.

My experience with lecterns containing sound systems is that the average "modern" cleric can speak/shout/wail louder than the sound system.  Presenters that use a quiet, contemplative voice will benefit only up to the point at which feedback occurs.

Feedback happens when a "loop" of acoustic information is created.  The sound comes out of the loudspeaker and is "heard" by the microphone; with enough level feedback will happen.  Mechanical transmission of sound (from the lectern cabinet, through the microphone mounting and then to the mic itself) is also common and can result in feedback although this is less common.

How much customer demand is there for such a product and how much is your firm willing to invest to make a product that is functionally competitive with, or exceeds, existing products?  I suggest you find and try the existing models out there and decide if you can do as well or better AND decide if, in fact, such products actually solve a real need.  My guess is that houses of worship and similar facilities are buying aesthetics or convenience... what they do NOT receive is a sound system capable of amplifying voice for an audience of more than 25-50 people.
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Re: Bare Bones PA System
« Reply #9 on: June 30, 2012, 11:11:27 am »


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