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Author Topic: Suggestions wanted for small church improvement in sound reinforcement  (Read 1856 times)

Dan Courtney

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Re: Suggestions wanted for small church improvement in sound reinforcement
« Reply #20 on: January 23, 2019, 10:45:09 am »

But, don't ignore areas were people don't currently sit.  If you get a single new family attending, they might be in a dead spot. 
Mounting the speakers on the beams IS a good idea, but be aware that it is a "forever" decision, because moving them later would leave some unattractive beam areas.   Of course that is the same with drywall, but much easier to repair and make look good.
 I would also add that assuming that you use the use the wall mounts, I would consider adding a support cable at about 60 degs. to the wall to take some of the torque load off the arm, tilt adjuster, and plate wall anchors.  (If torque doesn't meet all implied forces correctly.... sue me.  :) :) :))

I like your idea of a support/safety cable. I've used support cables in tower installs and know how effective they can be.

BTW I did add a small, powered speaker to temporarily provide sound for our dead area in the front middle of the sanctuary. It's hard to see in the picture.
  I run an output from the mixer, via an AUX, and link that AUX to the master fader. Seems to work once the initial settings are made.

*I did take a good look at the possible beam area, but I found it was a facade/fake and not suitable. So David, we're taking your suggestion of anchoring into the plaster wall. (Hanging a strong magnet on a string will help us locate the 2 x 4s.) Im planning on using 6 lag bolts. I bought some white covered 14 gauge speaker wire so it would look too conspicuous. Im not sure how to hide it when crossing the wooden wainscoting.*
« Last Edit: January 27, 2019, 01:58:23 pm by Dan Courtney »
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Mike Caldwell

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Re: Suggestions wanted for small church improvement in sound reinforcement
« Reply #21 on: January 23, 2019, 04:57:54 pm »

I checked out the EV ZX3 12" passive speakers - 90 x 50 horn coverage would suit our install. The 2" HF driver would surely enhance our female vocals. We may have to settle with a 1.5 HF driver because of costs.

Be careful with high frequency driver specs.

The ZX3 only has a one inch exit throat on the high frequency driver, the 2 inch number comes from the diameter of the voice coil.
same goes with the 1.5 on many speakers.

Not saying 1 inch exit drivers are bad but there's a big difference between exit and voice coil size.

There are a couple of exceptions, but most 1.5 and 2 inch exit high frequency drivers are going to have at least a 3 inch voice coil diaphragm if not a 4 inch.


If you budget right now is only a $1000 you may better off to move the speakers you have now to the front and maybe looking at upgrading the power amp.

That way your front end has been already upgraded for when the time and budget comes to upgrade the speakers.

By the time you factor in shipping, some hardware and cable that's
going to eat into your total budget for speakers.
But granted even $900 will get you better speakers than you have now.

« Last Edit: January 24, 2019, 02:46:12 pm by Mike Caldwell »
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Jonathan Johnson

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Re: Suggestions wanted for small church improvement in sound reinforcement
« Reply #22 on: January 25, 2019, 03:00:24 pm »

Focus your effort on where people currently like to sit.

But consider how much of that seating arrangement is due to the current sound coverage.

If the sound coverage was reasonably level over the entire seating area with reasonably good clarity, where would people sit?
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Stop confusing the issue with facts and logic!

Stephen Swaffer

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Re: Suggestions wanted for small church improvement in sound reinforcement
« Reply #23 on: January 28, 2019, 12:44:11 pm »

I bought some white covered 14 gauge speaker wire so it would look too conspicuous. Im not sure how to hide it when crossing the wooden wainscoting.*

Either fish it through the wall or paint it to match.  I did that years ago on a large area covered with wood that I could not fish through-the wires are hard to see even if you know they are there.
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Steve Swaffer

Dan Courtney

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Re: Suggestions wanted for small church improvement in sound reinforcement
« Reply #24 on: January 28, 2019, 06:57:18 pm »

Either fish it through the wall or paint it to match.  I did that years ago on a large area covered with wood that I could not fish through-the wires are hard to see even if you know they are there.

Thanks for the tip, Stephen; I may do that. Or travel along the top of the wainscoting and then down.
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Dan Courtney

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Re: Suggestions wanted for small church improvement in sound reinforcement
« Reply #25 on: March 01, 2019, 11:10:51 pm »

To all those who made suggestions, thank you.

I bought 2 Electro-Voice  EKL 12 inch speakers (300 watt) and mounted them to the right and left of the stage area. Their 90H and 50V projection seems to cover the seating area well. I sloped them down 15 pointing at the back row.

Because there was stonework behind the plastered wall, I ran the speaker wires straight down and along the wainscoting.

Now I'm in the market for a power amplifier.
« Last Edit: March 02, 2019, 08:42:36 am by Dan Courtney »
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Ken Webster

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Re: Suggestions wanted for small church improvement in sound reinforcement
« Reply #26 on: March 06, 2019, 07:16:20 am »

I came in late on this one so haven't read every post.  Apologies if I am doubling up on posts.  I generally find that when using passive speakers, the number one biggest reason for poor clarity and possibly even muffled and weak bass response is simply inadequate speaker cable gauge or old corroded connections.  If there is only one thing I can teach people about audio, this would be it.  The deal is that cable impedance determines how accurately the amp drives the speaker and also can apply a frequency related attenuation.  It is always best to use the shortest speaker cable run that you can which is a reason for running balance signal lines from the mixer to an amp locates close to the speakers.  However, you start with what you have.  There are various charts online but the general principle is that the longer the run, the larger the gauge required.  As an absolute minimum, you want the cable impedance to be less than 5% of the speakers impedance.  If you want exceptionally tight clear audiophile like sound, go for 2%.  If the cables are of sufficient gauge, then you may just need to clean the connections which may include re-terminating the cable if it is too corroded.  Try adding a dab of contact conditioner to help improve conduction and seal the connection from the air.





I used to be skeptical about this but have over many years in HiFi & PA have found it to be an inescapable truth when dealing with passive speakers.  Just remember, these are the most important connections in the whole system so you have to be able to access them for regular maintenance and conditioning every 2 years or so.  If not, the clarity degrades slowly over time without you noticing to eventually become quite poor.

I'm coming around to powered speakers because, they eliminate the cable issue, often include DSP and good companies purposely design the amps and speakers to perfectly match their performance characteristics.  Some cheap out with EQ filters which is less than ideal though.  Ideally you want a good design match and only use EQ for minor tweaks and ringing out etc.

Regards,
Ken
 
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Mike Caldwell

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Re: Suggestions wanted for small church improvement in sound reinforcement
« Reply #27 on: March 06, 2019, 08:15:27 am »

I came in late on this one so haven't read every post.  Apologies if I am doubling up on posts.  I generally find that when using passive speakers, the number one biggest reason for poor clarity and possibly even muffled and weak bass response is simply inadequate speaker cable gauge or old corroded connections.  If there is only one thing I can teach people about audio, this would be it.  The deal is that cable impedance determines how accurately the amp drives the speaker and also can apply a frequency related attenuation.  It is always best to use the shortest speaker cable run that you can which is a reason for running balance signal lines from the mixer to an amp locates close to the speakers.  However, you start with what you have.  There are various charts online but the general principle is that the longer the run, the larger the gauge required.  As an absolute minimum, you want the cable impedance to be less than 5% of the speakers impedance.  If you want exceptionally tight clear audiophile like sound, go for 2%.  If the cables are of sufficient gauge, then you may just need to clean the connections which may include re-terminating the cable if it is too corroded.  Try adding a dab of contact conditioner to help improve conduction and seal the connection from the air.





I used to be skeptical about this but have over many years in HiFi & PA have found it to be an inescapable truth when dealing with passive speakers.  Just remember, these are the most important connections in the whole system so you have to be able to access them for regular maintenance and conditioning every 2 years or so.  If not, the clarity degrades slowly over time without you noticing to eventually become quite poor.

I'm coming around to powered speakers because, they eliminate the cable issue, often include DSP and good companies purposely design the amps and speakers to perfectly match their performance characteristics.  Some cheap out with EQ filters which is less than ideal though.  Ideally you want a good design match and only use EQ for minor tweaks and ringing out etc.

Regards,
Ken

I can just about guarantee you that every major tour with non powered flown speakers is exceeding your 5% chart limits.

My largest speaker cables are 12ga and on my last two sound jobs I exceeded the 5% length on a couple runs and everything sounded fine.

Ken Webster

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Re: Suggestions wanted for small church improvement in sound reinforcement
« Reply #28 on: March 08, 2019, 07:04:21 am »

I can just about guarantee you that every major tour with non powered flown speakers is exceeding your 5% chart limits.

My largest speaker cables are 12ga and on my last two sound jobs I exceeded the 5% length on a couple runs and everything sounded fine.

Mike. I am pretty certain that you are familiar with the importance of impedance matching in analogue audio systems.  It is after all a very well established principal and for example is a major reason for not inserting a guitar pickup directly into Lo-Z where all the rich tonality would be lost.  At the least, Hi-Z (cheap option) or better a guitar DI would commonly be used, aside from signal type issues of course.  In equipment, the source output would normally be hundreds or even thousands of times less than the downstream devices input impedance and you would not need to consider cable impedance too much because the device impedance would be way to high for cable Z to be at all significant.  However, dynamic speakers have exceedingly low nominal impedance, commonly 4-8 ohms.  The source impedance of everything upstream of the inducer, including, amp, cables, XO etc becomes significant.  So it makes sense that high impedance cables could deteriorate sound quality.

I was skeptical, very skeptical but searching for answers did my research and found some audio engineering papers on it and some AB blind test studies as well.  Then I did my own AB tests that absolutely convinced me the principle of this is correct.  Now I admit that as you go up in gauge the benefits become less and less describable.  The average person would not be as aware of subtle differences as someone used to critical listening.  Also, just walking into a crowded venue and going oh that sounds nice, is not the same as doing AB testing in real time. So one may ask why bother if everyone is happy?

Well because we all know that our systems are a chain and each link in that chain degrades the signal.  So the game is to, minimise the number of links and minimise degradation at each link.
If we can make eve a small improvement at each link, then the cumulative effect can be quite significant (haven't we all done this?).  Making a performance improvement even a small one at the speaker cable is just part of that very normal strategy, but most people cheap out on this even if they have spent really big on amps and speakers.  It makes no sense to do that just to save peanuts on the copper gauge.

So, yes you can get quite good sound with cable just below these recommendations and audiences would not consciously be aware that it could have been better.  I mean, they are comparing this against the MP3 sound they hear everywhere else so they don't know any better.  However, if you really want to reveal the absolute full potential of your system rather than just good enough so that people will be deeply immersed in the rich tonality and clarity , then I think you will find these tables pretty well on that mark.  I actually got the final value recommendations from Audioholics and it is working extremely well for me.  So I am just going to stand by my comments on the principle of this.  Just what standard people want to work too is obviously up to them, I can only offer the figures I have come up with as a guide.
 

Ken
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Dan Courtney

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Re: Suggestions wanted for small church improvement in sound reinforcement
« Reply #29 on: March 09, 2019, 08:57:38 pm »

I appreciate Mike's detailed discussion about wire size for speakers. That makes good sense to me. I wonder if you have a preference for connectors -- 1/4 "jacks VS speakons. (Neutrik)

BTW, I used 14 gauge wire (AmazonBasics 14-Gauge Speaker Wire - 99.9% Oxygen Free Copper - 200 Feet)
« Last Edit: March 09, 2019, 09:00:52 pm by Dan Courtney »
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