Using the Sanctuary Sound System
The Beulah Sound Booth
Revised: First Compiled March 17, 1998 Revised January 2013
- SET UP
Turn on the main console power switch located under the consol shelf and then push the remote control button to power up the remote amplifier rack back stage.
To check the operation of all the speakers, turn on the CD player as a sound source and set the channel TRIM control so the green activity light is flickering.
Turn off all four main house feeds and the two AUX channels.
Bring up one house fader a time to verify that the speakers are operational.
Turn up the CHOIR MONITOR AUX #1 control past "U"nity so you can hear it and then return it to the Unity position.
If the PIANO / PILLAR MONITOR AUX #2 is to be used,
turn on the AUX #2 Amplifier on top of the remote amp rack back stage - remember to turn it off.
All wireless microphones should be left on during the entire service so the presenters don't have have to remember to turn them on.
Before the Service:
Check with the presiding minister and go over the order of service and note which microphones will be required for each segment.
List the fader numbers in the order of service and place "Post It Notes" on the faders if needed.
Check that all the microphones are working.
If musical reinforcement is required, check with the minister of music as to the placement of the microphones stands.
For Sunday service, label an AUDIO CD and place it in the recorder.
(Additional instructions to be added here)
- MIXER OPERATION
The goal of the sound engineer is to produce clear intelligible sound with no distractions for the listeners.
This requires a mixture of both art and science.
If you are unfamiliar with the sound board, we can provide training but it is recommended that you stop in and "play" with the system.
During the Service:
Use you ears and you mind to judge the appropriate levels.
Use the TRIM controls to set the proper levels with the faders at the "U"nity position.
"Good sound" should not be equated with "loud sound."
Remember, you are in the back of the hall so to your ears, the sound levels should be boarder line low.
Plus you in an elevated position and hearing the sound directly from the rear speakers which is then bouncing back off the glass windows.
Our sanctuary is very "live" with the wood ceilings and a back wall that is large, flat and reflective. If the PA system is run too "hot,
the sound bounces back to the presenters and they have a tendency to speak more softly . If you then increase the sound levels,
they will again drop their voices - a vicious circle which at some point will result in feedback.
Once you have determined an appropriate technical level, leave the fader levels alone. Don't try to correct the dynamics of the presentation.
Bringing up a microphones early is much less annoying than then popping the microphone on late.
Use the FADERS rather than the MUTE switches to activate microphones.
If you are late with the cue, it is better if the speaker's voice fades in than having the sound suddenly cuts in.
If you are not sure what microphone is to come on next, fade both microphones on part way until you determine which one to use.
After the Service:
Finalize the Audio CD and label it with time and date.
Collect and turn of the wireless microphones - people tend to walk off with them.
Put away any wired microphones, stands.
Fold up any microphone or speaker cables and hang them neatly on the peg board rack.
Turn off the REMOTE RACK using the push-button switch. The RED light will extinguish..
Remember to shut off the main power switch since the equipment generates considerable heat when the cover is closed.
If you have any problems with operation of the system , be sure to fill out a comment slip and turn it in with the CD recording.
- MICROPHONES and CABLES
The Microphone cables for the wired microphones are stored on a peg board across from the amplifier rack.
Microphone stands: Never over tighten the elevation locks or microphone holders - the aluminum or brass threads are easily damaged.
Never wind a microphone cable around your arm! That method produces twists in the internal conductors.
You can roll them around your arm if you have mastered the "Figure Eight" method.
Fold them in half and repeat or roll them up using the "over-under" technique.
There are three wireless microphones. Check the batteries before each service.
To test the Microphones:
One by one, set the individual channel faders at the "U" (Unity) position and adjust the TRIM control for the proper volume.
The Choir Microphones have an "ON/OFF switch on the adapter that connects the XLR cable to the mini cable
No battery is needed for the choir mike adapters as power to run these mike is supplied by "phantom" power from the mixer.
If these microphones does not work:
Exercise the ON/OFF switch and un-plug and then re-plug the cables at the adapter unit and the wall jack to clean the contacts.
- MONITOR SPEAKERS
The monitor speakers function independently from the "house" speakers.
The "AUX #1 and AUX #2 MONITOR" knobs control the overall volume of the monitor speakers.
The row of red knobs to the left of the main monitor knobs act as a volume control for each of the 16 input channels.
There is a selector switch to set the individual channels as PRE- FADER or POST-FADER.
Use Pre-Fader if you do not want the source to go over the house speakers.
Monitor levels should be kept low as possible to prevent feedback or overriding the effect of the house speakers.
You should not be able to hear the monitor speakers from the sound console.
The AUX #1 CHANNEL is for the CHOIR MONITOR speakers located in the left and right organ chambers.
They are driven by the "MONITOR" channel on one of the Crown power amplifier.
With the mixer's AUX #1 MONITOR control set to "U"nity, the power amplifiers gains should be set for proper levels in the choir loft.
Turn down the main Choir Monitor knob when the choir loft is not in use during a service.
The AUX #2 CHANNEL is for the portable speakers that act as monitors for performers in the "pit" area
There is a jack on the left pillar and another in the organ chamber grill.
They are driven by a stand alone amplifier on top of the amplifier rack.
The gain control is on the back of this amplifier is very touchy so there is a external gain control box on top of the amplifier.
This amplifier draws a lot of power and runs hot. It should be turned OFF at the amplifier when not in use.
The quality of the sound from any input channel is determined by the mix of high, medium, and low frequencies set for each input channel.
The HIGH and LOW adjustments are self explanatory.
The Mid Range adjustments consists of two control knobs:
One controls the FREQUENCY you want to adjust.
The second controls the boost or attenuation of that frequency.
The individual equalizer controls on each input channel should normal be left at the default center position.
If a speaker has a very low pitch voice, you may want to drop the low frequency equalization to make their voice more intelligible.
If a speaker has an annoying shrill voice, you may want to drop the high frequency equalization.
The CHOIR microphones have a low frequency roll-off switch located on the power pack:
[/--] Switch position reduces the very low frequencies [---] is a flat response if used for recordings.
- FEEDBACK ELIMINATION:
The system has three methods for preventing feedback:
The equalization controls on the mixer
The front channel equalizer in the mini-rack.
A 16 channel automatic feedback eliminator in the mini-rack
Normally, feedback should not be a problem except in very tricky situations.
The first response to hearing feedback is to wait momentarily to see if the automatic feedback filter will take care of the problem.
If the feedback persists, check to make sure that no unnecessary microphones are open.
Make sure that the MONITOR speakers levels are not too high.
Verify that the AUX #1 and AUX #2 controls on the CHOIR microphones channels are set at zero too prevent feedback from the monitor speakers.
If all else fails, turn down the TRIM setting on the microphones in use.
Never change the settings on the two equalizers! They are tricky to set and can be easily misadjusted.
The best setting for an equalizer is usually BYPASS!
- CD RECORDER and HEARING ASSIST
The CD recorder and the Hearing Assist Transmitter are both controlled by the far right fader.
The Hearing Assist Transmitter is a black unit with a 6": antenna inside the console.
The RECORD output from the mixer goes though an Automatic Volume Control located in the mini-rack.
This brings up the low levels and compresses any loud sounds so that the record levels are consistent with out the need to constantly monitor them.
There are two "Whisper Fans" running off a computer power supply in the base of the console.
If you make any "custom" adjustments to the system, please put all knobs and buttons back to their normal settings when finished.
If you hear KQV radio bleeding into the system, it is coming from the antenna created by the feed lines from the consol to the rear speakers.
There are "Snap-Together Toroid Chokes" on the speaker lines where they enter the consol.
Each trap has a C-clamp compressing the two halves of the ferrite wring.
Tighten the clamps very gently or the will break - replacements are available at radio shack. Catalog #: 273-104 It might be wise to install two per line.
If the MACKIE mixer is very reliable but when it begins to have problems, consider replacing it.
Repairs are difficult and therefore costly and once one thing goes wrong, something else will fail soon.
The CROWN amps are overpowered and can damage the speakers. Replacement speakers can be obtained from: Full Compass Sound
Lee Schaeffer - 2013