New Installation - Birmingham, AL
Eventronix partnered with Vulcan Audiovisual to design a new audio, video and lighting system for Mt. Canaan Full Gospel Church in Birmingham, Alabama. Below is the complete write of the design by Lee Carpenter of Eventronix and the installation by Vulcan AV.
Vulcan Audiovisual recently completed a expansive renovation and installation at Mt. Canaan Full Gospel Church, including all new audio, video, lighting and stage reconstruction. Having worked with the church for many years, Vulcan AV was intimately familiar with the needs of the church leaders, and how differently their facility was used on a daily basis. From large funeral services to conference and church services, the main sanctuary is a truly multi-use room that needed the flexibility to cover a multitude of uses. With this in mind, Vulcan AV put a master plan into motion that would complete this task.
Demo and Reconstruction
The first task was to demo the existing stage, including the built in choir risers, and create a completely new, and single level stage. Additionally, several movable platforms were constructed for band members to stage their equipment on so they could be moved to different areas of the stage, based on the type of program that was taking place. With the construction of the stage, all new floor pockets were installed with a variety of connections for audio, video (camera and video feed), lighting DMX, intercom, Aviom, and network patching. With the installation of the new floor pockets, the church now has the complete flexibility to utilize any part of the stage with ease.
After the stage construction was completed, the stage walls were painted with a lighter, neutral color, to match the rest of the sanctuary.
Previous video control
Since the church has a weekly television show, a complete video upgrade was essential. Being that the previous video system was a standard definition system that was installed in the early 2000’s, it was time to bring their system up to HD. The new video system is anchored by an Black Magic Designs Atem HD 2 ME switcher, which is run by 2 Apple Mac Minis and a touchscreen monitors. Since the Atem is a true, full 2 ME switcher, the software allows for each ME to operate as an independent switcher. This being the case, the switcher was set up with ME 1 operating graphics, playback and Propresenter (displaying lyrics, sermon notes, scripture and some video playback), with its output feeding the new video projector, balcony monitors, and foyer monitors. ME 2 is dedicated for camera switching for broadcast. The operator controlling ME 1 also has the ability to take cameras shots whenever they like and display them on the projection screen and monitors throughout the building. Additionally, the switcher has H.264 conversion capability, allowing the church to stream their services and events live.
With the installation of the switcher, the church also upgraded their cameras to Sony XDCAM series cameras, with remote control operation for iris and color control. Each of the 4 cameras is fed to through an iso monitor and out to a Black Magic Hyperdeck Shuttle SS hard drive recorder, allowing for up to 3.5 hours of continuous recording. Since the new floor pockets allowed for many different camera locations to be available, Vulcan AV installed a Black Magic Microhub router, which allows for any floor pockets input to be routed to any input on the switcher, as well as to the monitors and recorders. Also, with the smaller sized cameras, and the hard drive recorders, all of the cameras and recorders are easily portable for use to record events outside the church.
The last piece of the video system was them main projection system. The desire of church leaders was to bring their services to life using video footage incorporated into their worship services, in addition to having the ability intermingle camera shots with graphics. After creating some 3D renderings of different screen options, the church leaders decided to do a single, large sized (25’ wide to be exact) HD screen, as opposed to 2 separate screens. The single screen be covered by a single Christie 15,000 ANSI lumen projector, displaying HD video.
3 Screen Solution 3D Rendering
Single Screen Solution 3D Rendering
One of the main requests of the church leaders was for proper stage and audience lighting, since it had been a difficult taks to accomplish in the past. With this in mind, Vulcan AV designed a fully automated lighting system utilizing Elation LED moving fixtures hung overhead on trussing that covered the entire stage area. Vulcan AV also installed Elation LED bars on the upstage floor to wash the back wall of the stage to supplement the overhead lighting. For audience and television lighting, Vulcan AV used Source 4 leikos to allow for the light to be shaded and concentrated to specific areas. The existing incandescent room lighting was transferred over to Lightronics architectural lighting dimmers, allowing for all of the lighting in the entire sanctuary to be dimmed and controlled by the lighting designer. Also, with the new floor pockets, the lighting designer has the flexibility to place fixtures anywhere on the stage they desire, as well as locating lighting control on the stage during the programming process.
Lighting being prepped for hanging
The last piece of the upgrade was the addition of a new Soundcraft digital console. The church already owned an Aviom system, which continues to serve their needs. With the addition of the new console, the worship team has also implemented a ProTools HD system for multitracking their performances, as well as pre-recording instrumental parts for songs to be played back live during services and events. This allows for the band to perform larger than life pieces with instruments that may not be apart of the live performance, but are essential to the songs performed.
After 7 weeks of intense installation, rigging, wiring and programming, Mt. Canaan finally celebrated the completion of the project on Easter Sunday with a power program of music and a great message from Pastor Dr. Willie B. O’Neal. With a standing room only crowd in attendance, it was the perfect opportunity for Vulcan AV to show what their new system could do, and thankfully, it was received very well.
Vulcan AV would like to thank Pastor Willie B. O’Neal and the Mt. Canaan family for trusting and allowing us to bring their, and our vision to life. Also, to Dedrick O’Neal, Director of Arts, Media and Music, who was the leader for the entire project for Mt. Canaan, and who helped us tremendously throughout the entire process.
Renderings and full system design by Lee Carpenter for Vulcan Audiovisual.