Glad Tidings recovers from flood, upgrades to HD video
USA: While Glad Tidings Church in Lake Charles, LA, was not impacted by the historic flooding in Louisiana during August 2016, it only recently recovered from significant damage following a water main break in December 2015. Last year’s flood impacted about 4,600 sq-m of the church campus, including the main sanctuary, bookstore, and offices. Renovations were completed recently, as Glad Tidings returned to its sanctuary for services. The renovations included implementing an already planned upgrade of the church’s video production equipment to a full HD production workflow.
Glad Tidings had been using an aging analogue switcher and three analogue cameras that were more than 20 years old. Footage was recorded to Betacam SP tape and transferred to DVD for distribution. The new HD-SDI operation features four JVC GY-HM89 ProHD cameras and a Newtek Tricaster 8000 live video system, which allows live streaming of its Sunday and mid-week services.
Equipped with Fujinon lenses, The JVC ProHD cameras are each mounted on a tripod with studio configurations, including the KA-790G studio sled and VF-HP790G 8.4-inch viewfinder. David Fontenot, media pastor at Glad Tidings, has positioned all four cameras at the back of the sanctuary, with two cameras in the centre and one on each corner. Mr Fontenot reports appreciation for the customisation options of the GY-HM890, as well as the speed of the camera’s auto focus, which is a big help for the volunteer camera operators. ‘For what we needed – jumping from SD to HD – and with the research that we did, it seemed to us that JVC would get us more for our money,’ he says. ‘Everything about the cameras is wonderful.’
The church purchased a JVC GY-HM200 4KCAM compact camcorder with an integrated 12x lens. Dubbed the ‘baptism cam’, it will be used near the front of the church on a jib, camera slider, or handheld as required to create a more immersive visual experience for the congregation and online viewers. While the church has not yet used the built-in streaming features of its JVC cameras, Mr Fontenot has reportedly considered the possibility of live HD streaming of outside events.
For image magnification (IMAG), the church purchased two projectors and a large video screen on each side of the front platform. In the past, screens used only displayed song lyrics, but the new system superimposes lyrics over live video. The IMAG feed is also shared on multiple monitors in the main entrance foyer and the cry/overflow room.
‘We want our congregation to be immersed in the worship service,’ Mr Fontenot proclaims. ‘The video from the JVC cameras is so crisp and clear. It completely transforms how we do church.'
The church has not broadcast its services on television in more than a decade, but Mr Fontenot is hopeful the new HD upgrade will help the church return to the airwaves.