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Church and H.O.W. Forums for HOW Sound and AV - Your Displayed Name Must Be Your Real Full Name To Post In The Church and HOW Forums => Church Sound => Topic started by: Aaron Fisk on July 08, 2011, 10:16:14 pm

Title: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on July 08, 2011, 10:16:14 pm
We are planting a church that has the charter that 50% of what we take in (post-launch) goes back out to those in need.  This means that we are renting a school gym for our services (to keep overhead down).  I am helping put together the sound setup.  Needless to say we do not have a lot of money to start with and the sound system will not be the highest priority, but we do want to have a decent setup eventually.  There are two sides to the area we can use.  Initially, we will use the cafeteria, which is 44 x 60 and has some sound dampening in the ceiling.  When we grow out of that space, we will use the  cafeteria, which is 90 x 60 and does not have sound dampening in the ceiling. 

I have some ideas of how we can scale this as the church grows and we have more money available.  I have some stuff from a home recording studio I used to have that I am selling to help buy some gear and I have some stuff I will keep for the church. 

This is what I have that I think could be helpful for the church
   SM58 Mic (1)
   Mic stands (several)
   Mic cords (several)
   Soundcraft E12 mixing board
   Countryman Direct Box
   SM57 Mic (3)

My plan was to slowly scale.  Here is what I planned on getting right away for the church to have a sound setup.
   16 channel snake (I am open to suggestions surrounding fairly inexpensive brands)
   Behringer EUROLIVE F1220A powered monitors (4) I may want to get the F1320Ds that come out later this month that are 300W, as opposed to the F1220A that are 125W.  The thought was at the very beginning to use two of these as the PA speakers (pre-launch services), then right before launch, getting real PA speakers
   Additional SM58 mics as needed
   At least 2 more direct boxes (I am open to brands on this one as well)

By launch, the goal would be to add the following
   JBL PRX612m (2) (or PRX615m, not sure which would be better)
   PRX618s-xlf (1)
   1 wireless mic system with earset mic for pastor
   Additional SM58s as needed

When funds are available and more channels are needed, we would add
   A second wireless mic system
   PreSonus StudioLive 16.4.2 mixing board
   A second PRX618s-xlf if funds are available

I am just looking for feedback if people think this sounds like a good plan or if I am going down the wrong track.  Any positive feedback is appreciated.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Tim Padrick on July 08, 2011, 10:22:22 pm
Consider hiring a small local outfit to provide.  You won't have to worry about transport, storage, or maintenance.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Nicholas Bailey on July 08, 2011, 11:49:49 pm
Aaron,

I would suggest going to other churches that at doing the portable church plant and see how they are doing it.  I run sound for a 1 year old church plant in Jacksonville, AR. 

As for as snakes, cables, and rack cases, the best place to get them is http://www.audiopile.net/.  Trust me you want cases for everything. 

Our church in the past has went the Behringer route, but in my opinion most of there stuff will fail right after the warranty period. 

My advice would be that you would be better off buying used good quality equipment from either the marketplace here or eBay.  I have seen complete systems on the marketplace for a reasonable price in the past

Our system consists of a rolling cart housing Allen and Heath 2400 24 channel mixer, 4 wireless microphones, 6 wireless In-Ears, various other audio toys, and Bi Amp Nexia Digital processing handling EQ and crossover duties, and a separate amp rack powering 2 Community S-1596 speakers and 2 Community S-215s speakers.

The Community speakers sound awesome.  The 90 degree horns really give a good amount of coverage, if you are planning on just using two close to the stage like we do.

I have assisted setting up another portable church using powered speakers, what I realized is that forces you to run a microphone cable and AC power to each speaker.  I know seems obvious. With a system like ours with a amp rack and passive speakers you just need a single power cable to power the rack and run your speaker cables to the cabinets.  Or main system setups with 6 cables being run.  A snake cable for the stage inputs, a snake cable that runs to the amp rack, two speakon cables that run to the two subs, and two speakon cables that run to the main speakers.

The real problem you are going to have is without quality equipment it will not stand up to the abuse it will receive being loaded in and out of your room every Sunday.

I can send you a complete list of everything that is in our sound system.  We were blessed in the fact that our main church had some used equipment.

Do you have a parent church?  If you have a church that is providing funding, maybe the would be willing to upgrade some of the equipment in their building and give the new church the older equipment.

When we build a new room at my church, we were able to take down the speakers out of the main worship center and place them in the new room.  Then purchase new speakers for the main worship room.  The speakers sounds so good in the smaller room that most people thought they were new.

Later,

Nick

These are just some things to think about.  I hate to see someone not setting up for success.  You want to have a easy to setup, reliable system that you do not have to constantly work on to make it make sound.



Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on July 09, 2011, 12:15:36 am
I agree about buying quality used equipment rather than new, cheap gear to be replaced.  You'll need to deploy what you get very carefully in such a space, so the better control the gear will give you, the better time you'll have taming the large, boxy spaces.

You can save money by forgetting the trendy DI's and buying good quality, simple DI's like those sold by Audiopile.  For the cost of a Countryman you can get 2 or 3 passive Audiopile DI's and a few microphones.  There are some very good Chinese "shure" knock offs available from Orange County Speaker Supply.  I bought two of their "ten packs " of the 58's and they've been just fine for general use.  I throw them around at festivals where I need lots of mics for "user operable" systems and needed something that I wouldn't care if they got lost.  They surprised me by being pretty rugged and decent sounding.  Just get the ones without the switches......

Definitely shop for good, used speakers.  You can save as much as 50%.  I've seen lots of high quality, older cabinets go for ten cents on the dollar.  If you're lucky enough to have a good speaker repair shop around perhaps they could assist you in locating some decent, older gear.  Same with a pro audio shop.  Not Guitar Center or a music store, but a genuine sound and lighting supplier.

Let everyone know your location and perhaps a reader or member here can get in touch with some hints.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Brad Weber on July 09, 2011, 08:31:36 am
We are planting a church that has the charter that 50% of what we take in (post-launch) goes back out to those in need.  This means that we are renting a school gym for our services (to keep overhead down).  I am helping put together the sound setup.  Needless to say we do not have a lot of money to start with and the sound system will not be the highest priority, but we do want to have a decent setup eventually.
I think you are being smart in approaching it from the perspective of how you can support the immediate needs while also supporting the long term goals.  The one question I have is that you say the sound system is not the highest priority but you have not identified how the system will be used or what is expected.  The more obvious aspects of this may be things like how music fits in the worship, what instruments may be involved and which would run through the system, etc.  If you can go without having to reinforce anything but speech and vocals then that might represent a quite different situation than if you also have to address bass, keys, etc.
 
A perhaps less obvious aspect is how well people need to understand what is said.  It looks like the walls have no acoustical treatment and you'll likely be dealing with pole mount speakers so looking at maximizing the sound hitting the people and minimizing the sound hitting the walls may be important.  Thus factors such as speaker pattern and pattern control may be something you want to consider.
 
I would not focus too much on details such as the Behringer F1220A versus the F1320D.  Behringer is a bit creative in their power ratings and, interestingly, the maximum output in the F1220A product data is actually 6dB greater than the maximum output identified in the F1320D product data (121dB versus 115dB).  But neither is probably a good choice for the mains due to the point noted directly above.
 
The E12 is a nice little mixer but has no high pass filter on the inputs and limited channel EQ.  You also don't address any other signal processing such as EQ, filtering, crossovers or limiting for the mains and monitors.  With the spaces envisioned you might want to seriously consider adding some signal processing.  That could mean a dedicated processing or moving up the StudioLive to be an initial component.
 
Also consider all the little things like a way to transport and store all the cables and stands, power cords, a rack for the wireless mics and any processing devices, etc.
 
As far as using your gear, often a significant factor in that is if you would still be using the gear involved.  If it would be a situation where you'd use it when the church was not using it for services then you may want to consider a method to identify and separate the mics, stands, cables, etc. that are yours, you may not have time every week during break down to carefully segregate your gear from that owned by the church.  You may also want to consider the impact of something happening and how it would impact the other use, for example if a mic was lost or damaged while you were using it how might that affect the church service?  And from a practical perspective you might want to address insurance coverage, your gear may not be covered under your homeowner's insurance if it is stolen or damaged while being used for the church.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Jonathan Johnson on July 09, 2011, 04:24:08 pm
Just get [microphones] without the switches......

If you will always have someone running the sound system, you definitely want microphones without switches.

It's a bewildering phenomenon. If there is a switch on a microphone, it WILL be turned off by the performer at the end of his set (amazing, it's like a magnet). If there is no switch, the performer will never even look for it. The next performer will have NO CLUE that there is a switch, that it is turned off, and that HE needs to turn it on. When this happens, the performer will look all over the audience EXCEPT the sound booth, where the tech is madly signalling to "turn it on." And if he does see the tech, he will have no clue what the gestures mean.

Nothing like the sound tech walking up on stage to turn on the microphone... embarrassing for the tech, embarrassing for the performer, and distracting for the audience. Talkback (if available) is a little better, but still a distraction.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on July 11, 2011, 07:35:57 am
Well, I have made some decisions.  I purchased a Manufacturer refurbished Presonus Studiolive 16.4.2 board for a good price.  I am going to get an audiopile snake and DI's (maybe I will get a rack from there as well).  The main thing I am still struggling with is active monitors and PA. 


Having had the first meeting in the space yesterday, I think I will only need to PA speakers to start (no sub right away).  I know that JBL just put in place a price increase on their PRX 600 series, so now doesn't seem like a great time to buy.  Maybe we can get away with no monitors to start and just the PA (for the pre-launch services)?
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Kyle Leonard on July 21, 2011, 11:56:12 am
Well, I have made some decisions.  I purchased a Manufacturer refurbished Presonus Studiolive 16.4.2 board for a good price.  I am going to get an audiopile snake and DI's (maybe I will get a rack from there as well).  The main thing I am still struggling with is active monitors and PA. 


Having had the first meeting in the space yesterday, I think I will only need to PA speakers to start (no sub right away).  I know that JBL just put in place a price increase on their PRX 600 series, so now doesn't seem like a great time to buy.  Maybe we can get away with no monitors to start and just the PA (for the pre-launch services)?


This may sound crazy, but there is a new speaker manufacturer that just started being imported from Brazil. Their website is www.skpaudio.com. The pricing is really good for start up churches, and the sound is really good. There should be a manufacturers representative in your area that has something you can demo. I've been very impressed with the quality.


Kyle
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Brad Weber on July 21, 2011, 03:33:16 pm
This may sound crazy, but there is a new speaker manufacturer that just started being imported from Brazil. Their website is www.skpaudio.com (http://www.skpaudio.com/). The pricing is really good for start up churches, and the sound is really good. There should be a manufacturers representative in your area that has something you can demo. I've been very impressed with the quality.
Were there any specific products that you were thinking of for the particualr application being addressed or are you just pushing the brand in general?
 
I don't know anything about SKP Audio but I could find only two distributors in the US identified on the SKP Audio web site, a music store and what is apparently an importer/exporter.  Both are in the Miami area and the music store is apparently only an authorized distributor for within Miami Dade County.  If you know of other distributors or reps then please share that information, otherwise a demo is probably not a practical option for most people.
 
Since a demo is apparently out of the question, I randomly choose one SKP Audio speaker model, the SK-6P, to look at the product data and noted that they claim a frequency response of 35Hz-20kHz (+/-3dB) yet the accompanying response chart shows some levels at higher frequencies that exceed 110dB while the 35Hz level is somewhere around 82 or 83dB, about 30dB below the peaks levels, which is not +/-3dB.  It looks like a more realistic response might be 95Hz-20kHz (+/-5dB).  Maybe that is simply a typo but it does make one wonder.  I also cannot find even nominal pattern information for any of the speaker models, a pretty basic piece of information to provide.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 04, 2011, 08:07:35 am
Ok, a little bit of an update, as a number of things have changed.  First off, we were able to get a different school with an auditorium (seats about 450), which solves a number of the sound issues vs. being in a gym.  I have purchased some equipment.  We have two JBL PRX615 for the main speakers and a Presonus StudioLive 16.4.2 for the board.  The goal is to add at least 1 JBL PRX618s-xlf before the launch (not sure if we need two).  We have five passive DI's (one countryman, 4 EWI's) and a 150' 16x8 Reel snake from EWI.  I have a SM58 and all the drum mic'ing we will need.  Here is what I was thinking that we need before our Launch

- At least 2 wireless mic systems.  I was thinking of getting AT-3000's (one handheld system and one UniPak transmitter for Pastor with a MM audio earset mic).  I have heard a lot of good things about the AT-3000 and it will be right around our budget of $1,000. 
- At least one JBL PRX618s-xlf sub (not sure if we need two). 
- Wireless IEM for the drummer.  I was thinking of getting the AT-M2M
- Floor Wedge monitors for the rest of the group.  Here I am not really sure what route to go at all.  I like the ease of active monitors for volunteers, but we do want to reduce clutter on the stage.  I have in the budget about $1,450 for the monitors ($2,000 - $550 for the AT-M2M).  I am really open to any thoughts / suggestions.  If we were to go passive, the amps and wedges would have to be around that $1,450.
- Misc cables.  I have some, but we also have around $150 in the budget for other cable needs (I do have a good pair of 50' XLR's cables for the main speakers)

Is there anything I am missing?  I would also be really open to comments / suggestions on the stuff I have listed.  Thanks!
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on August 04, 2011, 09:36:47 am
Ok, a little bit of an update, as a number of things have changed.  First off, we were able to get a different school with an auditorium (seats about 450), which solves a number of the sound issues vs. being in a gym.  I have purchased some equipment.  We have two JBL PRX615 for the main speakers and a Presonus StudioLive 16.4.2 for the board.  The goal is to add at least 1 JBL PRX618s-xlf before the launch (not sure if we need two).  We have five passive DI's (one countryman, 4 EWI's) and a 150' 16x8 Reel snake from EWI.  I have a SM58 and all the drum mic'ing we will need.  Here is what I was thinking that we need before our Launch

- At least 2 wireless mic systems.  I was thinking of getting AT-3000's (one handheld system and one UniPak transmitter for Pastor with a MM audio earset mic).  I have heard a lot of good things about the AT-3000 and it will be right around our budget of $1,000. 
- At least one JBL PRX618s-xlf sub (not sure if we need two). 
- Wireless IEM for the drummer.  I was thinking of getting the AT-M2M
- Floor Wedge monitors for the rest of the group.  Here I am not really sure what route to go at all.  I like the ease of active monitors for volunteers, but we do want to reduce clutter on the stage.  I have in the budget about $1,450 for the monitors ($2,000 - $550 for the AT-M2M).  I am really open to any thoughts / suggestions.  If we were to go passive, the amps and wedges would have to be around that $1,450.
- Misc cables.  I have some, but we also have around $150 in the budget for other cable needs (I do have a good pair of 50' XLR's cables for the main speakers)

Is there anything I am missing?  I would also be really open to comments / suggestions on the stuff I have listed.  Thanks!
I would go Line6 XD-V70 for wireless http://line6.com/xd-v/
I just bought a channel for myself and am REALLY impressed.  2.4Ghz frequency means the FCC won't take your mics away in a couple years.  One handheld and one lav system will be under your budget.  They're Shure compatible so you can run an earset mic or a different lav element if you want.  Do a forum search for Mike Pyle - he's a good dealer to work with.

If money is tight, I would skip the wireless ears for the drummer and go wired.  Spend some money on good earbuds, and get a wired headphone amp to start with.  We've had fairly good luck with this one: http://whirlwindusa.com/catalog/headphone-distribution/default/pa-1-personal-headphone-monitor

I haven't used this particular one but have used other Rolls equipment, and this is likely fine and cheaper than the above Whirlwind:
http://www.rolls.com/product.php?pid=PM50s


Active monitors (good ones, not crap like Tapco Thumps) will be easier to make sound good.  If it were me, I would get a pair of QSC K10 monitors which should be under your budget as long as you only need 2 of them.  I would caution you about trying to go too far down the foodchain with these though - if you try to get 4 wedges and amps for your $1500 budget you will be really scraping the bottom of the barrel.  Get a pair of good ones such as the K10s and add more later.  If money is REALLY tight, skip the wireless handheld mic and apply that money to more monitor wedges.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Taylor Phillips on August 04, 2011, 10:03:20 am
Ok, a little bit of an update, as a number of things have changed.  First off, we were able to get a different school with an auditorium (seats about 450), which solves a number of the sound issues vs. being in a gym.  I have purchased some equipment.  We have two JBL PRX615 for the main speakers and a Presonus StudioLive 16.4.2 for the board.  The goal is to add at least 1 JBL PRX618s-xlf before the launch (not sure if we need two).  We have five passive DI's (one countryman, 4 EWI's) and a 150' 16x8 Reel snake from EWI.  I have a SM58 and all the drum mic'ing we will need.  Here is what I was thinking that we need before our Launch

- At least 2 wireless mic systems.  I was thinking of getting AT-3000's (one handheld system and one UniPak transmitter for Pastor with a MM audio earset mic).  I have heard a lot of good things about the AT-3000 and it will be right around our budget of $1,000. 
- At least one JBL PRX618s-xlf sub (not sure if we need two). 
- Wireless IEM for the drummer.  I was thinking of getting the AT-M2M
- Floor Wedge monitors for the rest of the group.  Here I am not really sure what route to go at all.  I like the ease of active monitors for volunteers, but we do want to reduce clutter on the stage.  I have in the budget about $1,450 for the monitors ($2,000 - $550 for the AT-M2M).  I am really open to any thoughts / suggestions.  If we were to go passive, the amps and wedges would have to be around that $1,450.
- Misc cables.  I have some, but we also have around $150 in the budget for other cable needs (I do have a good pair of 50' XLR's cables for the main speakers)

Is there anything I am missing?  I would also be really open to comments / suggestions on the stuff I have listed.  Thanks!
I'd forget wireless IEM for the drummer, he's probably not going to move around the stage much while he's playing.  I think you'll want more vocal mics as well, I like the Sennheiser e835 which you can get in a pack of three for less than $250.  For monitoring, I think I would go with passive because it's less to hook up every week and you don't have to worry about having enough outlets on stage for them.  Also, if you get more musicians and need more wedges, you can get another passive wedge and daisy chain to another, saving money and the need for another power outlet.  I haven't heard EV's passive ELX speakers, but the active ones sound great so I'd look at them.  I don't know a lot about amps, though.  As for are you missing anything, do you have stands for mics and speakers? 
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 04, 2011, 10:21:13 am
I'd forget wireless IEM for the drummer, he's probably not going to move around the stage much while he's playing.  I think you'll want more vocal mics as well, I like the Sennheiser e835 which you can get in a pack of three for less than $250.  For monitoring, I think I would go with passive because it's less to hook up every week and you don't have to worry about having enough outlets on stage for them.  Also, if you get more musicians and need more wedges, you can get another passive wedge and daisy chain to another, saving money and the need for another power outlet.  I haven't heard EV's passive ELX speakers, but the active ones sound great so I'd look at them.  I don't know a lot about amps, though.  As for are you missing anything, do you have stands for mics and speakers?

Here were my thoughts on the wireless IEM for the drummer (but I am still open to change)
- less cords to run (we want to have as clean of a stage as possible in terms of cords)
- has a built in limiter (if I went the cord route, I would have to put a limiter in anyway)
- easy to add a second receiver if the bassist wants IEM

Not sure how many people we will have singing.  I do have in the budget for an additional 2 SM58's, if we need them.  I have plenty of mic stands and I did purchase speaker stands as well. 
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on August 04, 2011, 10:50:14 am
I'd forget wireless IEM for the drummer, he's probably not going to move around the stage much while he's playing.  I think you'll want more vocal mics as well, I like the Sennheiser e835 which you can get in a pack of three for less than $250.  For monitoring, I think I would go with passive because it's less to hook up every week and you don't have to worry about having enough outlets on stage for them.  Also, if you get more musicians and need more wedges, you can get another passive wedge and daisy chain to another, saving money and the need for another power outlet.  I haven't heard EV's passive ELX speakers, but the active ones sound great so I'd look at them.  I don't know a lot about amps, though.  As for are you missing anything, do you have stands for mics and speakers?

Here were my thoughts on the wireless IEM for the drummer (but I am still open to change)
- less cords to run (we want to have as clean of a stage as possible in terms of cords)
- has a built in limiter (if I went the cord route, I would have to put a limiter in anyway)
- easy to add a second receiver if the bassist wants IEM

Not sure how many people we will have singing.  I do have in the budget for an additional 2 SM58's, if we need them.  I have plenty of mic stands and I did purchase speaker stands as well.
You have a limiter built in to your Studiolive I presume? If you can live with the same mix for both bass and drums (could be doubtful on ears), you can do that whether wired or wireless - a second wired headphone amp will still be cheaper than a second wireless receiver.

This is all about making due with limited resources.  If money was no object I would get a board with enough auxes for everyone and put the whole band on PSM900s.  Since we are trying to stretch dollars, wired is your friend.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 04, 2011, 12:57:37 pm
You have a limiter built in to your Studiolive I presume? If you can live with the same mix for both bass and drums (could be doubtful on ears), you can do that whether wired or wireless - a second wired headphone amp will still be cheaper than a second wireless receiver.


I guess I haven't even looked enough at the Presonus Studiolive yet (just got it), but you are right, I do believe it does have a limiter.

I am now thinking of the following for my monitor setup
- Crown XLS1500 DriveCore Series Power Amp (2)
- EV ELX112 (passive) (3)

I think I am going to forgo the wireless IEM for the drummer for now. Can get a wired headphone amp for the drummer (are there any that do stereo?)

Does this seem to make sense?  First time dealing with passive monitor setups.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on August 04, 2011, 01:15:06 pm
I guess I haven't even looked enough at the Presonus Studiolive yet (just got it), but you are right, I do believe it does have a limiter.

I am now thinking of the following for my monitor setup
- Crown XLS1500 DriveCore Series Power Amp (2)
- EV ELX112 (passive) (3)

I think I am going to forgo the wireless IEM for the drummer for now. Can get a wired headphone amp for the drummer (are there any that do stereo?)

Does this seem to make sense?  First time dealing with passive monitor setups.
Most headphone amps are stereo, but that means you will take two auxes from your board to drive that.  The StudioLive doesn't have many to spare, so that's probably not going to be a good direction for you.

Those monitors and amps will work, but I stick to my opinion that you get better performance per dollar with active speakers.  This just came up in the Marketplace (not necessarily a personal endorsement):
http://forums.prosoundweb.com/index.php/topic,4030.0.html

I've hard the SxA250 and they sound great. 

I understand the desire to minimize cables on stage, but there are ways to do that with active speakers - several companies make a power cord and XLR combo designed exactly for this.  With passive speakers you need an amp rack on or near the stage, and you need to tune the wedges with something.  Your Studiolive can do some of this, but not to the degree that is done by the manufacturer inside active boxes, and your tuning will only be as good as the one who sets it up.  If you don't have anyone with a lot of experience doing this, I guarantee that the SxA250 or the K10 will sound better than any $300 - $500 passive wedge.

Back on the wireless for a moment, if you consider the Line6, make sure you look at the model I mentioned - the XD-V70.  There's an XD-V30 that is older technology and not as good.  Check out this thread for more opinions:
http://forums.prosoundweb.com/index.php/topic,1373.0.html
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 04, 2011, 03:35:52 pm
Most headphone amps are stereo, but that means you will take two auxes from your board to drive that.  The StudioLive doesn't have many to spare, so that's probably not going to be a good direction for you.

I understand the desire to minimize cables on stage, but there are ways to do that with active speakers - several companies make a power cord and XLR combo designed exactly for this.  With passive speakers you need an amp rack on or near the stage, and you need to tune the wedges with something.  Your Studiolive can do some of this, but not to the degree that is done by the manufacturer inside active boxes, and your tuning will only be as good as the one who sets it up.  If you don't have anyone with a lot of experience doing this, I guarantee that the SxA250 or the K10 will sound better than any $300 - $500 passive wedge.


Interesting.  I have read some posts from some others stating they have actives for their monitors and plan to go back to passives.  I could probably get 3 EV ELX112p (the active ones) for about the same money as the 2 amps and the 3 passives, it would just cost more to add a fourth monitor if we needed it.  I guess I am open to either one.  I just have been getting a lot of conflicting feedback (in terms of actives vs. passives).
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on August 04, 2011, 04:20:12 pm
Interesting.  I have read some posts from some others stating they have actives for their monitors and plan to go back to passives.  I could probably get 3 EV ELX112p (the active ones) for about the same money as the 2 amps and the 3 passives, it would just cost more to add a fourth monitor if we needed it.  I guess I am open to either one.  I just have been getting a lot of conflicting feedback (in terms of actives vs. passives).
There are great passive monitors - they're just not the $300 ones, and they still take setup and processing to get right, and often require biamping for best performance. 

I haven't heard the ELX EVs either the active ones or the passive ones, but I suspect they're a notch down from the SxA250 and the K series.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on August 04, 2011, 04:54:49 pm
I just have been getting a lot of conflicting feedback (in terms of actives vs. passives).
I'd be curious to know what their reasons are, what passive wedges they're going to, and how they're driving them.  I suspect the reasons are more complicated (and probably moving to more expensive monitors) than "passive is better".

Most reasonable quality active speakers (QSC K, QSC KW, QSC HPR, RCF, EV SxA, Mackie SRM450s, Mackie HD, FBT, and nearly all of the higher class actives - ADR, EAW, Meyer, etc.) are internally biamped, have high quality crossover designs (easier to do and less lossy if done before the amplifiers), have internal limiting, and have tonal processing to make the speaker sound pretty good without external EQ and be pretty hard to kill because of the internal protection. 

Getting all that in a passive system requires an amplifier, or two amplifiers if the internal passive crossover is a limiting factor, some kind of DSP to drive the system, and someone with a lot of experience to program the DSP for both tonality as well as driver protection, not to mention a good enough wedge to start with so you end up with something reasonable.  If you're willing to spend $1000 on the wedge (JBL SRX712M, Radian Microwedge, etc.) and another $1000 on an amp and DSP, you'll beat out most of the mid range active speakers.  I'm not sure you get equivalent performance for much less than that.

I don't have a horse in this race and I don't mean to keep beating on this issue, but since my experience with active boxes is so good, I guess I'm just trying to make you think hard about this.  I've spent a lot of years suffering with less than wonderful gear because it was gear the "fit the budget".  At this point in my life I'd much rather have less good quality equipment rather than more lower quality equipment.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 04, 2011, 05:25:03 pm
I'd be curious to know what their reasons are, what passive wedges they're going to, and how they're driving them.  I suspect the reasons are more complicated (and probably moving to more expensive monitors) than "passive is better".

Most reasonable quality active speakers (QSC K, QSC KW, QSC HPR, RCF, EV SxA, Mackie SRM450s, Mackie HD, FBT, and nearly all of the higher class actives - ADR, EAW, Meyer, etc.) are internally biamped, have high quality crossover designs (easier to do and less lossy if done before the amplifiers), have internal limiting, and have tonal processing to make the speaker sound pretty good without external EQ and be pretty hard to kill because of the internal protection. 

Getting all that in a passive system requires an amplifier, or two amplifiers if the internal passive crossover is a limiting factor, some kind of DSP to drive the system, and someone with a lot of experience to program the DSP for both tonality as well as driver protection, not to mention a good enough wedge to start with so you end up with something reasonable.  If you're willing to spend $1000 on the wedge (JBL SRX712M, Radian Microwedge, etc.) and another $1000 on an amp and DSP, you'll beat out most of the mid range active speakers.  I'm not sure you get equivalent performance for much less than that.

I don't have a horse in this race and I don't mean to keep beating on this issue, but since my experience with active boxes is so good, I guess I'm just trying to make you think hard about this.  I've spent a lot of years suffering with less than wonderful gear because it was gear the "fit the budget".  At this point in my life I'd much rather have less good quality equipment rather than more lower quality equipment.

No, I don't mind you pushing the issue.  That is why I posted what I planned on doing, to get some feedback.  I am seriously considering going with 3 EV ELX112p's.  The reviews have been good (some say better than the QSC K series), so I think that might be the route to go, especially since it will be volunteers doing all the setup and tear down (and probably running sound, unless we can find another drummer).  I appreciate the feedback. 

In terms of the wireless mics, I know you have said that you like the Line 6's, but I think we are going to go with the ATW-3000 series.  I have heard a lot of really good things about them and I am just more comfortable with an industry standard. 
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on August 04, 2011, 05:32:17 pm
In terms of the wireless mics, I know you have said that you like the Line 6's, but I think we are going to go with the ATW-3000 series.  I have heard a lot of really good things about them and I am just more comfortable with an industry standard.
That's certainly your choice.  If you want the industry standard for lower end wireless, that would be the Sennheiser 100/300 series.  AT is a minor player compared to Sennheiser and Shure.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Ryan M. Fluharty on August 04, 2011, 06:41:17 pm
That's certainly your choice.  If you want the industry standard for lower end wireless, that would be the Sennheiser 100/300 series.  AT is a minor player compared to Sennheiser and Shure.

+1 for the Sennheiser G3 100.  When we upgraded our old Sennheiser G1 Lavs because of the 700mhz spectrum change, we originally went with the AT-3000s.  We kept them for a week or two and then switched to the Sennheiser G3s.  To me, the AT-3000's feel cheap (plastic transmitters) and I don't believe they are as durable as the Sennheiser body packs, which are mostly metal.  Also, the Sennheisers I found a little easier to navigate and set up.  Don't get me wrong, the AT-3000s worked fine, but IMO durability and ease of functionality the Sennheisers are far superior.

I believe you said you're gonna use MM microphones with the body packs.  If you do go the Sennheiser route, save yourself some money and get the "instrument" setup.  Its the same body pack without the lav mic.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 05, 2011, 02:36:43 pm
I am getting a lot of feedback on various forums to consider the Line 6 wireless mics.  I guess I will have to take a look, the masses are speaking!  :)  Has anyone used the transmitter pack version of the Line 6? 
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on August 05, 2011, 02:43:04 pm
I am getting a lot of feedback on various forums to consider the Line 6 wireless mics.  I guess I will have to take a look, the masses are speaking!  :)  Has anyone used the transmitter pack version of the Line 6?
If you read the Road Test link I posted above, there are some comments about the beltpack.  There's also another thread on the old PSW forum in the RoadTest section that may have some more info.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Frank DeWitt on August 05, 2011, 03:50:53 pm
I have a AT 3000 wireless handheld and belt pack that we use regularly.  They work well, no complaints at all.  Certainly not the only game in town, but I can recommend them.  Careful shopping on Ebay can usually find them for about $350

Frank
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on August 05, 2011, 04:43:09 pm
I have a AT 3000 wireless handheld and belt pack that we use regularly.  They work well, no complaints at all.  Certainly not the only game in town, but I can recommend them.  Careful shopping on Ebay can usually find them for about $350

Frank
Carefully reading my posts above for the name of a certain Line6 dealer will get you brand-new-no-EBay-Required Line6 gear for not tremendously more than that.  8)
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Frank DeWitt on August 05, 2011, 10:12:49 pm
I have a AT 3000 wireless handheld and belt pack that we use regularly.  They work well, no complaints at all.  Certainly not the only game in town, but I can recommend them.  Careful shopping on Ebay can usually find them for about $350

Frank
Carefully reading my posts above for the name of a certain Line6 dealer will get you brand-new-no-EBay-Required Line6 gear for not tremendously more than that.  8)

I have heard good things about the line 6 mic (and tested one.) I would consider it for a mic for a talker (pastors belt pack transmitter) but I would be a bit nervous using it for a singer.

Our mixer has a latency of about 5 ms, the line 6 is just a bit under 4 ms.  We use IEMs for our worship team and 9 ms is enough to be noticeable with IEMs.

This is only an issue with IEMs and digital mixers.  The mic with a analog mixer would be OK and it would be OK without IEMs.

There is no delay with non digital mixers such as those by Sennheiser, or AT
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 06, 2011, 07:13:04 am

I have heard good things about the line 6 mic (and tested one.) I would consider it for a mic for a talker (pastors belt pack transmitter) but I would be a bit nervous using it for a singer.

Our mixer has a latency of about 5 ms, the line 6 is just a bit under 4 ms.  We use IEMs for our worship team and 9 ms is enough to be noticeable with IEMs.

This is only an issue with IEMs and digital mixers.  The mic with a analog mixer would be OK and it would be OK without IEMs.

There is no delay with non digital mixers such as those by Sennheiser, or AT

This is the first I have heard of a potential latency issue with the Line 6.  We have a Presonus StudioLive 16.4.2 mixer.  The drummer will be using headphones via a headphone amp, but it won't be wireless.  Will we have a latency issue?
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Frank DeWitt on August 06, 2011, 08:21:06 am

I have heard good things about the line 6 mic (and tested one.) I would consider it for a mic for a talker (pastors belt pack transmitter) but I would be a bit nervous using it for a singer.

Our mixer has a latency of about 5 ms, the line 6 is just a bit under 4 ms.  We use IEMs for our worship team and 9 ms is enough to be noticeable with IEMs.

This is only an issue with IEMs and digital mixers.  The mic with a analog mixer would be OK and it would be OK without IEMs.

There is no delay with non digital mixers such as those by Sennheiser, or AT

This is the first I have heard of a potential latency issue with the Line 6.  We have a Presonus StudioLive 16.4.2 mixer.  The drummer will be using headphones via a headphone amp, but it won't be wireless.  Will we have a latency issue?

You will have latency, but it is not clear if you will have issues.

Any device that converts audio to digital and back to audio has latency so the Studiolive like all digital boards has it and the line 6 has it, and they add.
Presounus doesn't say how much latency they have.

To put it in perspective each foot  of air space between a source (speaker) and your head  adds about 1 ms of latency.  Therefor everyone in the congregation experiences at least 15 or 20 ms of latency.

The potential problem is when you can hear both a un delayed sound, and a delayed sound. (A example is speakers mounted half way back in the room.)  That is why rear speakers should always be delayed to match the sound coming from the front.

The worst case is when a singer can hear there own voice, and also hear there voice delayed in there earphones. 

Your drummer will hear someone else through his headphones and there will be a delay, but if he took the headphones off and heard that person through the mains or monitor speakers there would also be a delay.  Probably not a problem.

Here is a good article about latency
http://www.prosoundweb.com/article/the_l_word_latency_digital_audio_systems_opening_pandoras_box/
 
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Brad Weber on August 07, 2011, 07:06:01 pm
Ok, a little bit of an update, as a number of things have changed.  First off, we were able to get a different school with an auditorium (seats about 450), which solves a number of the sound issues vs. being in a gym.  I have purchased some equipment.

I would guess there is an audio system already existing in the room so have you verified that you are not able to use any of the auditorium house system or gear?  Have you assessed where you can locate your mix position and how you get between it and the stage without creating trip hazards?  Have you surveyed what power provisions are available at the FOH position and at the stage?


I participate on another forum that includes many school auditorium operators and managers, including some that share their facilities with church groups.  One of their most common complaints is cables, etc. getting damaged or disappearing.  Many times there may be cables and other equipment laying around and it is tempting to use it, which may be okay with them.  The problem is that it too often then ends up getting put in with the church gear when everything is loaded out, so you might want to coordinate labeling and storage of loose equipment in order to avoid such issues between you and the school.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 07, 2011, 10:06:38 pm

I would guess there is an audio system already existing in the room so have you verified that you are not able to use any of the auditorium house system or gear?  Have you assessed where you can locate your mix position and how you get between it and the stage without creating trip hazards?  Have you surveyed what power provisions are available at the FOH position and at the stage?

Good questions.  I do not believe that the auditorium has a sound system, at least one that we would want to use.  There is a spot for the mix position.  We will have to run a snake past one of the entrances, we have not yet determined the best way to have it be avoided as a tripping hazard.  I have not yet had a chance to look at power provisions are available yet.  I hope to do that next week (our launch is in February). 

I participate on another forum that includes many school auditorium operators and managers, including some that share their facilities with church groups.  One of their most common complaints is cables, etc. getting damaged or disappearing.  Many times there may be cables and other equipment laying around and it is tempting to use it, which may be okay with them.  The problem is that it too often then ends up getting put in with the church gear when everything is loaded out, so you might want to coordinate labeling and storage of loose equipment in order to avoid such issues between you and the school.

Since we are not using their sound equipment (we will be using their projector I believe), so hopefully the cable issue is one we can avoid.  Really good advice thought, thanks.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Frank DeWitt on August 07, 2011, 11:27:05 pm
Good questions.  I do not believe that the auditorium has a sound system, at least one that we would want to use.  There is a spot for the mix position.  We will have to run a snake past one of the entrances, we have not yet determined the best way to have it be avoided as a tripping hazard.  I have not yet had a chance to look at power provisions are available yet.  I hope to do that next week (our launch is in February). 

Since we are not using their sound equipment (we will be using their projector I believe), so hopefully the cable issue is one we can avoid.  Really good advice thought, thanks.

Your StudioLive could be run from a wireless remote.  That would eliminate the snake.  What it doesn't do is give you a way to play CDs or the audio track from videos or talk back or solo from the FOH position.  A work around that many people using the SAC mixer use is to use the remote, but also run a CAT5 OVER the entrance (easy to do with one CAT5) and run a few line level audio feeds over that for CDs, talk back, ETC.

I don't know if StudioLive supports solo control from the remote.

Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 08, 2011, 03:59:54 pm

I would guess there is an audio system already existing in the room so have you verified that you are not able to use any of the auditorium house system or gear?  Have you assessed where you can locate your mix position and how you get between it and the stage without creating trip hazards?  Have you surveyed what power provisions are available at the FOH position and at the stage?

I have included a photo of the electrical outlets on the side of the stage (it is the same for both sides).  I believe it is one normal outlet and four 220's, but I could be wrong.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 08, 2011, 04:00:55 pm
Here is a photo of the auditorium from the back.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 08, 2011, 04:02:31 pm
Here is a photo of the auditorium from the stage.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on August 08, 2011, 04:15:15 pm
I have included a photo of the electrical outlets on the side of the stage (it is the same for both sides).  I believe it is one normal outlet and four 220's, but I could be wrong.

It's always risky to speculate on things of this nature just from grainy photographs, but I doubt that those outlets are 220.  More likely 30 amp twist lock.  But sometimes people use such sem-proprietary outlets for connecting other things than AC.  Back in the day before Neutrik multi-pin speaker connectors, people would use twist-lock AC connectors for audio or other types of signal.

This place looks way to new for that, though, so I'm guessing 30A/110V outlets.  Ask the building engineer.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on August 08, 2011, 04:37:58 pm

I would guess there is an audio system already existing in the room so have you verified that you are not able to use any of the auditorium house system or gear?  Have you assessed where you can locate your mix position and how you get between it and the stage without creating trip hazards?  Have you surveyed what power provisions are available at the FOH position and at the stage?

I have included a photo of the electrical outlets on the side of the stage (it is the same for both sides).  I believe it is one normal outlet and four 220's, but I could be wrong.
Those look like lighting dimmer connections - not suitable for audio gear or anything other than a light fixture.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 08, 2011, 04:40:34 pm
I have included a photo of the electrical outlets on the side of the stage (it is the same for both sides).  I believe it is one normal outlet and four 220's, but I could be wrong.
Those look like lighting dimmer connections - not suitable for audio gear or anything other than a light fixture.

Not sure if this photo is any better, but it does show more of the plugins
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on August 08, 2011, 04:42:44 pm
I have included a photo of the electrical outlets on the side of the stage (it is the same for both sides).  I believe it is one normal outlet and four 220's, but I could be wrong.
Those look like lighting dimmer connections - not suitable for audio gear or anything other than a light fixture.

Not sure if this photo is any better, but it does show more of the plugins
I will bet you a steak dinner those are dimmer channels controlled by the house lighting board.  I'll bet you two steak dinners if they say L5-20 on them.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 08, 2011, 04:50:52 pm
Not sure if this photo is any better, but it does show more of the plugins
I will bet you a steak dinner those are dimmer channels controlled by the house lighting board.  I'll bet you two steak dinners if they say L5-20 on them.

Based on your reaction, I think it is a safe bet I should say no deal.   ;)  So it sound like they are not 220's. 
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: TJ (Tom) Cornish on August 08, 2011, 05:05:43 pm
Based on your reaction, I think it is a safe bet I should say no deal.   ;)  So it sound like they are not 220's.
Correct.  The reason they're a twist lock connector is so that folks don't mistake them for regular outlets and plug things that shouldn't be dimmed into them.  My big tipoff is that there are several next to each other. 

Even if they were 220v, you couldn't use them anyway, since you need 4 conductors, not 3 - two hots, a neutral, and a ground.  3-wire 220 volt circuits are only suitable for devices that don't require splitting it to 120v power, such as a large motor.

It's pretty rare for a school auditorium to have heavy temporary power - not that many people bring in distro equipment to venues like that.  Hopefully you can find enough separate wall circuits to get what you need.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Jeremy Johnston on August 08, 2011, 06:23:08 pm
OK, I'm a little late to this game, but as a church TD and looking at how people use things and what the needs really are for church - I have to ask if you really NEED wireless IEM or two wireless mics?  If the drummer went wired IEM, you would save several hundred dollars. If you could do with ONLY the pastor on wireless mic, you'd save several hundred more.

No matter what, the loudspeaker system is MOST important - EVERYTHING else can be changed easily, but getting good coverage, particularly in poor acoustic environments that you can't change, loudspeakers trump almost everything else.  POWER is important to, but these days, amplifiers and powered loudspeakers are so efficient that you can usually do the size of events you describe on the average house circuits.

Don't skimp on loudspeakers. Go WIRED where ever you can. No batteries (fewer anyway) and no wireless frequency coordination to bother with. Wired is more reliable, cheaper and better sounding for the dollar than wireless in almost every case.

JJ
TD
KCC
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 08, 2011, 08:25:04 pm
OK, I'm a little late to this game, but as a church TD and looking at how people use things and what the needs really are for church - I have to ask if you really NEED wireless IEM or two wireless mics?  If the drummer went wired IEM, you would save several hundred dollars. If you could do with ONLY the pastor on wireless mic, you'd save several hundred more.

No matter what, the loudspeaker system is MOST important - EVERYTHING else can be changed easily, but getting good coverage, particularly in poor acoustic environments that you can't change, loudspeakers trump almost everything else.  POWER is important to, but these days, amplifiers and powered loudspeakers are so efficient that you can usually do the size of events you describe on the average house circuits.

Don't skimp on loudspeakers. Go WIRED where ever you can. No batteries (fewer anyway) and no wireless frequency coordination to bother with. Wired is more reliable, cheaper and better sounding for the dollar than wireless in almost every case.

JJ
TD
KCC

Thanks for the great ideas.  I have dropped the wireless IEM's for the drummer and am going to get a personal headphone amp for him.  I talked to the pastor today and we may get one (at most two) wireless mics.  The thoughts was one handheld and one earset, but if we needed we could get by with one. 

My thoughts are shifting to powered wedge monitors.  Here is my current idea (sorry, it has shifted a number of times, as I learn more about my space and needs) two EV ZX1a's for the vocalist / acoustic guitars and two EV ELX 112a's for the electric guitars and bass.  I could do four of either one, but I like the light weight of the zx1a's and the lower frequency response of the 112a's  Maybe I am way off base here, but that is my current thought for the monitoring.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Brad Weber on August 09, 2011, 08:41:52 am
The fact that the twist locks are labeled 59, 60 , 61 and 62 also suggests they are probably dimmed circuits with the labeling indicating the corresponding circuit number.

My thoughts are shifting to powered wedge monitors.  Here is my current idea (sorry, it has shifted a number of times, as I learn more about my space and needs) two EV ZX1a's for the vocalist / acoustic guitars and two EV ELX 112a's for the electric guitars and bass.  I could do four of either one, but I like the light weight of the zx1a's and the lower frequency response of the 112a's  Maybe I am way off base here, but that is my current thought for the monitoring.
That is one reason I asked about stage power.  If power exists near where you need it then powered speakers may be a good solution, but if you have to run power all over the stage and/or have limited power at the stage then they powered monitors not be the best approach.

The receptacles in the pictures look like 15A rather than 20A receptacles but the two duplexes on the stage could be wired with all four outlets on one circuit, one circuit per duplex or one circuit per receptacle.  You're apparently going to be power everything on stage from those including not only the powered monitors but also the two PRX615 mains and any PRX618S-XLF powered sub(s) you want to add, all the instruments, any props or music stand lights and anything else you have on stage.  It looks like you need to look in detail at both whether you have sufficient power available at the stage and how you'll distribute that power to everything on stage since things like plugging one plug strip into another plug strip are prohibited by NEC.  You might want to check with the facilities people there at the school to find out in more detail what you actually have for available power on the stage before making any final decisions.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Aaron Fisk on August 09, 2011, 05:33:09 pm
OK, so this in the information I found out from the school today.  There are 20-amp circuits on each side of the stage and each is on a separate breaker.  We also have a 440 cable available in the upstairs area above the stage that can be provided, if needed.  Would that be sufficient for the following?
- JBL PRX615M (2) Mains
- JBL PRX618s-xlf (s) Subs
- EV ZX1A (3) Monitors
- EV ELX115p (1) Bass Monitor
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Brad Weber on August 09, 2011, 06:14:31 pm
OK, so this in the information I found out from the school today.  There are 20-amp circuits on each side of the stage and each is on a separate breaker.  We also have a 440 cable available in the upstairs area above the stage that can be provided, if needed.  Would that be sufficient for the following?
- JBL PRX615M (2) Mains
- JBL PRX618s-xlf (s) Subs
- EV ZX1A (3) Monitors
- EV ELX115p (1) Bass Monitor
I believe the PRX615M and PRX618S-XLF are rated at a maximum of 5A each, so those will pretty much take all of one circuit, or half the circuit on each side, if you run them hard.  The monitors do not draw nearly as much, maybe 3A total from what I can tell.  However, don't forget that you are also likely powering amps, keyboards, etc. on stage as well as if you ever add a projector or anything like that.  So you may be okay with the two 20A circuits, but you may want to be careful in how you distribute the power so that you don't end up with too much on either single circuit.
Title: Re: New church plant sound setup
Post by: Jonathan Johnson on August 12, 2011, 10:06:35 pm
The only thing that we can know for certain about the twist-lock receptacles is the rating of the receptacle. There will be a NEMA code on the face of the receptacle, decipher it here (http://www.powercabling.com/nema.htm). Note that this page may not include all NEMA configurations.

As others have posted, do not assume that these are always live, connected directly from the electrical panel. Verify with the house technician before using. Connecting your sound system to a dimmer panel may be a bad thing.