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Small PA + Stream For Synagogue Chapel

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Scott Holtzman:

--- Quote from: Herman Wolf on March 31, 2022, 12:45:28 PM ---Hey, fam.
Part-time listener, first-time caller.

I've been taking audio gigs at a local synagogue for the past year.
Last week they asked if I could help them put together a small PA / streaming solution for their chapel.
They paid through the nose for a ridiculously OP system (Digico/QSC/Bose) in the main sanctuary and have no intention of repeating that experience so they called me instead of their AV contractor.

I'm here to ask for help with gear selection.

The chapel is oblong in shape, ~50'L x ~25'W x ~20'H. Speakers will be mounted on the walls flanking the podium. Photos forthcoming.

They already have dedicated streaming hardware (Podium Mic > Panasonic UX series 4K camera > USB HDMI capture > ThinkPad (Intel Graphics)).

They want to add a small PA.
I'm envisioning something like this:



There are several points to consider when specifying equipment for this project.

1. Budget. They don't want to spend more than ~CAD$3000 on the new purchases.
2. Expertise. The individuals running the stream and PA are utter normies, untrained in audio. The system must be dead simple to operate; basically set-and-forget like the one in the main sanctuary.
3. Layout. We need to make the equipment as unobtrusive as possible. Hiding cables is not impossible but it will be a challenge given the nature of the room.

A dedicated DSP is probably overkill in this room, and they need some kind of level control for the PA, so I figured a small digital mixer would fit the bill. The Behringer Flow 8 has all the IO they need as well as corrective EQ on the outputs. For the record I'm not a fan of Behringer but I can't think of another mixer that is as small with as many features for even close to the same price.

I'm envisioning a pair of passive wall-mounted array-style column speakers.
Passive because one of the speaker positions doesn't have power nearby, whereas speaker wire can be dropped down the wall cavity from above without too much trouble (I think).

I don't know the installation market very well at all.
Is there a mixer (besides the Flow 8) or a DSP/control surface solution that is a) inexpensive and b)can be configured for simple operation?
What are some speaker / DSP / amp brands I ought to consider? The amp needs to be as small as possible.

Thanks for reading!

--- End quote ---


The streaming is important.  There is free software called Open Broadcast Studio, OBS.  If you have basic computer skills it has very nice features including a titler and the ability to "wipe" between the video and slides.  The real benefit is that is connects directly to services like Youtube and Facebook and bypasses all their processing.  Your audio stream and video stream would be massively improved.  If the camera is within a few feet of the computer you can get an HDMI interface for the computer.  If not an SDI to HDMI converts and you can run as much coax as you need.  I think you can squeeze that in your budget. 


Keep in mind the Flow 8 needs a tablet to access many of the eq and dynamics settings.



Herman Wolf:

--- Quote from: Scott Holtzman on April 02, 2022, 05:19:34 AM ---The streaming is important.  There is free software called Open Broadcast Studio, OBS.
--- End quote ---

Yeah, they've been using OBS for a couple of years, now, in the main sanctuary, where they have a dedicated streaming rig on the balcony. I came in and tweaked the audio processing for them last year while their AV contractor was in tweaking the house system and updating Q-Sys Designer (which I've trained myself on since).


--- Quote from: Scott Holtzman on April 02, 2022, 05:19:34 AM ---If the camera is within a few feet of the computer you can get an HDMI interface for the computer.  If not an SDI to HDMI converts and you can run as much coax as you need.  I think you can squeeze that in your budget. 

--- End quote ---

The plan is to get the whole rig to live by the (soon-to-be-wall-mounted) camera in the back of the room specifically in order to minimize the need for format converters and long cable runs all over the place. I'd probably spec an HDMI cable from Blue Jeans Cables because I like that company's vibe (and their Monster Cable lawsuit story is endlessly entertaining).


--- Quote from: Scott Holtzman on April 02, 2022, 05:19:34 AM ---Keep in mind the Flow 8 needs a tablet to access many of the eq and dynamics settings.

--- End quote ---

Yes, well aware, thank you.

Herman Wolf:

--- Quote from: Mike Caldwell on April 02, 2022, 12:40:37 AM ---Maybe for the PA processor/mixer look at something like a DBX Zone Pro. That would do everything you need and once properly set up you could have one remote volume knob.
Simple software, easy to program.

--- End quote ---

I looked at those. The cheapest ZonePro is twice the purchase price of the Flow 8 plus there would be additional installation costs for the control knob(s). Also, the Flow 8 has USB which could come in handy in a number of scenarios.
If the mixer doesn't work out, e.g people kept getting the faders confused, then I'd probably push them to have control knobs installed and buy a zone processor instead.

Mike Caldwell:

--- Quote from: Herman Wolf on April 02, 2022, 11:30:03 PM ---I looked at those. The cheapest ZonePro is twice the purchase price of the Flow 8 plus there would be additional installation costs for the control knob(s). Also, the Flow 8 has USB which could come in handy in a number of scenarios.
If the mixer doesn't work out, e.g people kept getting the faders confused, then I'd probably push them to have control knobs installed and buy a zone processor instead.

--- End quote ---

I knew it would be more expensive but it could be set up with only a volume knob exposed, actually with it all set up and dialed in you may not even need a volume knob!

Scott Holtzman:

--- Quote from: Herman Wolf on April 02, 2022, 04:33:15 PM ---Yeah, they've been using OBS for a couple of years, now, in the main sanctuary, where they have a dedicated streaming rig on the balcony. I came in and tweaked the audio processing for them last year while their AV contractor was in tweaking the house system and updating Q-Sys Designer (which I've trained myself on since).

The plan is to get the whole rig to live by the (soon-to-be-wall-mounted) camera in the back of the room specifically in order to minimize the need for format converters and long cable runs all over the place. I'd probably spec an HDMI cable from Blue Jeans Cables because I like that company's vibe (and their Monster Cable lawsuit story is endlessly entertaining).

Yes, well aware, thank you.

--- End quote ---


Sounds like you have a great handle on your tech.  I have some Blue Jeans cables at home, I am sure the HDMI will work just fine at that distance.  If you run the OBS on Linux I am going to think you are a ringer.

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