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Author Topic: System Designer  (Read 1990 times)

A.J. McGlynn

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System Designer
« on: January 08, 2008, 11:39:01 AM »

Here is my deal. I just started working at this church back in September. We just moved into the building in November. Before I got here all the systems had already been designed and most stuff had already been ordered and the AV company had been chosen a year before I came on board. The system was installed and I was 80% happy with the design of the system. There are a few small details I wasn't happy with but thats of no concern.

My main problem is that the sound company has installed the system did a few tweaks to it but other than that they have done no system alignment no tuning no nothing! I have e-mailed the designer and talked to him but he just isn't being responsive and giving me excuse after excuse. It has been 2 months since the system was installed and it has yet to be tuned. I thought it should have been tuned and aligned before we ever had a service but the sound company and designer thought otherwise.

There was an acoustic firm who assisted in the design of the room so there are some acoustic treatment in the room and it was supposed to be all designed "right" I am getting horribly intelligibility with spoken word. I really think it has to do with getting the speakers delayed in the proper manner. I am no system designer so I can't do it.

Should I bring in another company to try and get the system measured and aligned?
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A.J. McGlynn, Technical Director
Grace Church
Erie, PA

David Wanat

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Re: System Designer
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2008, 12:15:35 PM »

Check what they contract was for?  Was it just for equipment, or did it include install and tune?

If it inlcuded system tuning then...

Have you paid them?
If not, you now have a very good incentive for them to come finish the job.

If you have, then call management at the company and explain your position.  If they are still unresponsive, raise the appropriate level of stink.
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A.J. McGlynn

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Re: System Designer
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2008, 01:06:53 PM »

Unfortunately  we have already paid them.

As far as contract goes I have never seen the contract but that is not a bad idea to look at that.

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A.J. McGlynn, Technical Director
Grace Church
Erie, PA

Ivan Beaver

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Re: System Designer
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2008, 01:17:08 PM »

By all means the system should have been aligned BEFORE you have your first service.  You say the designer thinks otherwise.  When does he think it should be done?  After it has had a "break in period" Laughing   Maybe your gear hasn't conditioned itself to the room yet Rolling Eyes  Sad

Yes the intelligibility could be due to no alignment and/or poor design and or acoustic issues.

My biggest concern would be fact that the "designer" has no concern in aligning the system.  That would say to me that he has no ability to do so-correctly anyway.  Every person that I knows that does quality system alignment is picky about such things and would never allow a system to be used without PROPER alignment.  And proper is the optimum word here.

I would complain to the owner of the company and see where that goes.  Don't put much emphasis on the alignment, but rather on the poor sound quality.  Let the company figure out what the problem might be.

If you call in outside sources be prepared to pay them and also be prepared to have your current system critiqued.

It could be that the overall design is not right, along with it not working together as a unit (alignment).

Real system designers get picky about it being right.  People that just sell gear could care less the end result, as long as the check clears.  It sounds like you have the later.

Sorry.
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Can I have some more talent in the monitors--PLEASE?

Ivan Beaver
dB Audio & Video Inc.

Jeff Ekstrand

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Re: System Designer
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2008, 01:37:24 PM »

Agreed. Perhaps the person who had your position before you, or negotiated the audio install contract, didn't realize that system tuning would be necessary and should be included.

Regardless of whether the install contractor does it or you find another company, I would definitely get the system tuned.

Once you've paid, David's right, you're at the mercy of their management.
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Jeff Ekstrand

Technical Director, North Shore Campus
Willow Creek Community Church
Northfield, IL

Brad Weber

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Re: System Designer
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2008, 02:03:02 PM »

Does the designer work for the installer or are they separate entities?  That could affect how the work was contracted and what options are available at this point.

There are potentially some legitimate reasons that no tuning was performed, it wouldn't be the first time I had seen an Owner request to take part of the work that out of the main contract or to negotiate it away to address some other problems during the installation.  It may have even been left out because it was not specifically called for in a competitive bid situation, that is one way to be less expensive than the other guys.  However, if any of these were the case then it would seem they would come out and say so.  I would certainly do what you can to see what was called for in any Contracts and Change Orders.

As Ivan noted, it can be awkward to bring in another firm.  The effort required may be greater as they may not be as familiar with the project or perhaps even with some of the gear.  Then there is always the potentially awkward situations with warranty and any future problems that can come up.  If the original installer is already being resistant then it is quite feasible that they will use any changes by others to the system settings as an excuse to avoid any further responsibility.  Unfortunately, it sounds like you may not have a real choice since it appears you have little leverage to force them to address the problem.
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Brad Weber
muse Audio Video
www.museav.com

Tom Young

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Re: System Designer
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2008, 08:26:05 PM »

I agree with Ivan's comments completely.

However, it probably all boils down to the contract, or interpretation of the contract. If the installer and/or designer are not contracted or otherwise obligated to do this, then they won't.

As Ivan alluded: those who do not know how to do this are usually very wary of attempting to do it. Actually; that is probably a good thing because otherwise they would *think* it is easy and end up doing more harm than good, so to speak. I have found that honorable/conscientious folks who do not have these skills and equipment subcontract this work out to those of us who do.

Despite the appropriate warnings of getting someone else involved, I think this may be your only valid recourse. A real pro will do the job right and in the process will also point out any design issues that need correction, as well as acoustic concerns. They may even say: "wow, this system rocks !" ....(hey: it could happen).

It may not be a bad idea to have a "second opinion" in this regard.
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Tom Young, Church Sound section moderator
Electroacoustic Design Services
Oxford CT
Tel: 203.888.6217
Email: dbspl@earthlink.net
www.dbspl.com

ProSoundWeb Community

Re: System Designer
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2008, 08:26:05 PM »


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