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Opinions on sound upgrade in new sanctuary.

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  • Opinions on sound upgrade in new sanctuary.

    My church is in the process of purchasing a new building. I was hoping that as we move facilities we might be able to get a new sound system. After factoring closing costs, building repairs, etc. there will not be enough of a budget for that. Therefore I am left with the task of trying to sort of piecemeal find ways of improving our sound. I'll tell you want we have, what our new facility will be, what I'm thinking, and then please give any advice you can.

    Our system:
    Powered 1000w Yamaha 20 channel board (16 channels usable for instruments)
    2 S115V 15" Club Series V speakers
    2 SM15V 15" Club Series V floor monitors
    The monitors have a separate amp so we can run two mixes

    Our band (Ranges from fairly hard contemporary to folksy)
    1 acoustic
    2 electrics running into amps (boutique/expensive set up) we mic them, but find we don't need to run them very loudly through the board because they are loud enough through their amps
    1 Keyboard
    1 mandolin from time to time
    1 Bass running into a 10" Harkte amp (can't be run into the board b/c of AC hum)
    Acoustic drum (our drummer has great control so no volume issues)
    3-4 vocalists per week

    Our new room:
    about 4000 sq feet.
    It is about twice as wide as it is deep. We plan to arrange the chairs around the stage in a sort of half hexagon pattern.

    What I'm thinking:
    I would like to incorporate another amp and subwoofer, not so much for volume, but for sound separation.
    I would like a new bass amp that is loud and clear enough to be heard throughout the room (we might consider going through the system if we would fix the AC hum)
    I would like 2 more speakers because of the width of the room.

    Any advice would be much appreciated. I am by no means a sound/technology expert and would love some advice.

  • #2
    I don't know the dimensions of the room (width, length) but 4000 is about 63x63 Twice as wide as long about 90x45. That's a big room.

    You will definitely need center fills in that room, I would think. Our room is only 45' wide and we need them. You probably also need rear fills, depending on how deep the room is.

    Our sanctuary is about 45wx50d. We have 2 mains, two flown center fills and two rear fills, plus one sub. It's a little overkill, but we had some dead spots, plus the better coverage allows us to lower overall volume. (we run 90-93dB)

    Consider iso boxes for the amps so you can run them louder and control them better from the board.

    Consider a power conditioner for the board, or have an electrician run a dedicated, grounded line for it.

    Comment


    • #3
      Yes it is about 45' deep and about 90' wide. I was thinking we'd need the fills as well. Not sure we'd need them for the back though. What should the FOH configuration look like?


      I don't think we really need the iso boxes. One guy runs an Axe effect II into a powered Mackie speaker and we get pretty decent control on the board. The other guy uses Mesa Transatlantic TA-15 into some boutique cab from a local guy. He has it facing backwards and mic'd so it isn't terribly loud on stage.

      Do you think the AC hum is from the board? I thought it was a grounding issue on the bass amp. (I might be confusing my terms.). Not sure, though. It also might not be a problem in the new building , though I doubt.

      Thanks for the suggestions.

      Comment


      • #4
        Yes it is about 45' deep and about 90' wide. I was thinking we'd need the fills as well. Not sure we'd need them for the back though. What should the FOH configuration look like?
        I've got the mains (all 4) on one 1000w amp. They are big 15x9 JBL cabs. The fills are Bose, off an 800w amp. ( The third amp runs the wedges and the sub) The center fills are split by channel, not summed. I use our center mix for the sub. But you could also run the fills on a center mix if your board has one.

        Our mains are on the walls, just in front of the first row of seats. The rear mains are a little over halfway back. The center fills are flown over the center in line with the mains.

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        • #5
          Do you think the AC hum is from the board? I thought it was a grounding issue on the bass amp. (I might be confusing my terms.). Not sure, though. It also might not be a problem in the new building , though I doubt.
          .

          I would think the hum is in the building. It might be in the amp. Do you hear it right out of the amp speaker? Have you tried using the amp in another building?

          Comment


          • #6
            Are you sure the hum is coming from the Bass amp and not from the Bass itself? In my experience Bass guitars are notorious for having winding issues in their pickups. If the Bass amp doesn't hum when it's just turned on without anything plugged into it, then it's likely the Bass guitar is the problem. Sometimes you can fix this by having the Bass player turn down one or the other of his pickups. If it does turn out to be coming from the Bass amp, you may be able to fix it using a HumX adapter on it's power plug. However, that's only if there's a ground fault issue in the house wiring. Otherwise it's somewhere in the wiring of the amp.

            In terms of your setup, I'm very familiar with your system as that's exactly what we were using prior to upgrading to a QSC Line Array setup. I'm not sure you need another amp though. 1000w amp driven through 4 speakers should still be adequate power. I'm not sure what you mean by sound separation though. With two mains facing forward and two facing 30 degrees outward from center I would think you'd get all the fill you need in a wide room. To enhance the bass I'd suggest maybe one 1000w powered subwoofer. In our old configuration with your type of equipment we ran a Mackie off of the sub out (non amplified) signal of the board and it was quite adequate. With a powered sub you can apply as much or as little as you need for the low end at the subwoofer itself through it's volume control. Since those frequencies are non-directional you could pretty much place it wherever you want. Although since you aren't mic'ing the drums and until you have your Bass hum problem fixed, you wouldn't get much value out of a subwoofer since that's about the only instruments that really use it.
            Last edited by DunedinDragon; 07-11-2013, 03:30 AM.
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            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by DunedinDragon View Post
              Are you sure the hum is coming from the Bass amp and not from the Bass itself?
              Not really. We've had a few different basses running through that amp, but they've all had the same issue. They have all been low end basses so it could be a grounding issue on all of them. The more we're looking at the cost of getting into the new building, the more the sound budget is being reduced. So I think we will probably have to stay with this amp. I will try to see if it is the bass or the amp itself, and then see about getting the HumX or something similar.

              Originally posted by DunedinDragon View Post
              I'm not sure you need another amp though. 1000w amp driven through 4 speakers should still be adequate power.
              That's good to know. I wasn't 100% sure. I've spoken with salesmen who said that 1000w would not be adequate. Of course they were trying to sell me something, so who knows. Is that how you guys had things set up?

              Originally posted by DunedinDragon View Post
              I'm not sure what you mean by sound separation though. With two mains facing forward and two facing 30 degrees outward from center I would think you'd get all the fill you need in a wide room. To enhance the bass I'd suggest maybe one 1000w powered subwoofer. In our old configuration with your type of equipment we ran a Mackie off of the sub out (non amplified) signal of the board and it was quite adequate. With a powered sub you can apply as much or as little as you need for the low end at the subwoofer itself through it's volume control. Since those frequencies are non-directional you could pretty much place it wherever you want. Although since you aren't mic'ing the drums and until you have your Bass hum problem fixed, you wouldn't get much value out of a subwoofer since that's about the only instruments that really use it.
              What I mean by separation is having the sub handle the lower frequencies, while the highs handle the mids, and highs. Things can tend to get a bit muddy while everything is going. I was hoping this would clear it up. We used to mic the kick drum, but honestly it didn't make much difference running through the two mains, so we stopped.

              I interested in your set up for the sub. Most powered subs I've seen had an XLR input, but the output from the board is 1/4". Was it as easy as just getting an adapter?

              On a side note I live about 40 minutes from Dunedin so we're practically neighbors.
              Last edited by Mike Darley; 07-11-2013, 08:54 AM.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Mike Darley View Post



                That's good to know. I wasn't 100% sure. I've spoken with salesmen who said that 1000w would not be adequate. Of course they were trying to sell me something, so who knows. Is that how you guys had things set up?
                He was either trying to sell you, or had no idea what he was talking about. He should have been talking to you about impedance. 1000w is more than enough for four mains speakers. (we run 4 15x9 JBL's off one 1000w Crown, and can get 130dB easy. Power is not your problem.) As long as the amp can handle the lower impedance, you'll be fine, and most quality amps can go as low as 2ohm.


                What I mean by separation is having the sub handle the lower frequencies, while the highs handle the mids, and highs. Things can tend to get a bit muddy while everything is going. I was hoping this would clear it up. We used to mic the kick drum, but honestly it didn't make much difference running through the two mains, so we stopped.
                Do you have a crossover? You can do a low-pass on the sub and reduce the mud. (or a high-pass on the mains.) Also, try mic-ing just the kick and putting it only into the sub. You don't want volume as much as you want to bring it out a little more clearly.


                I interested in your set up for the sub. Most powered subs I've seen had an XLR input, but the output from the board is 1/4". Was it as easy as just getting an adapter?
                Our sub actually has (IIRC) a Speakon input. It's either that or a 1/4. Usually only powered subs have XLRs - they can't handle the power of an amplified singal.

                We run it Sub OUT > Crossover > Amp > Speaker

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by mikeymo1741 View Post
                  He was either trying to sell you, or had no idea what he was talking about. He should have been talking to you about impedance. 1000w is more than enough for four mains speakers. (we run 4 15x9 JBL's off one 1000w Crown, and can get 130dB easy. Power is not your problem.) As long as the amp can handle the lower impedance, you'll be fine, and most quality amps can go as low as 2ohm.
                  Yeah, I think you are right. He may have just wanted to sell me something. I read the instruction book for the powered board and it said it can handle two speakers per side rated for 8 ohms, which is what our speakers are. So basically, we need two new speakers and we're in business. I'm thinking some fills for the middle. Any recommendations?


                  Originally posted by mikeymo1741 View Post
                  Do you have a crossover? You can do a low-pass on the sub and reduce the mud. (or a high-pass on the mains.) Also, try mic-ing just the kick and putting it only into the sub. You don't want volume as much as you want to bring it out a little more clearly.

                  Our sub actually has (IIRC) a Speakon input. It's either that or a 1/4. Usually only powered subs have XLRs - they can't handle the power of an amplified singal.

                  We run it Sub OUT > Crossover > Amp > Speaker
                  From what I understand our board has a built in crossover that puts out and unpowered 1/4" signal. So if we get a powered sub it should work...at least on paper.

                  Thanks for the help. I feel a whole lot better than I did a couple of days ago.

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