Bringing new life to Mount Hebron's audio
USA: The Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas metroplex is no stranger to large, multi-dimensional houses of worship. A case in point is Mount Hebron Missionary Baptist in Garland. Mount Hebron has a worship service capacity of 2,000, hosts streamed broadcasts, frequent musical events and an 800-member women’s bible study group. When supporting the church’s activities became difficult with its existing digital audio desk, which suffered from excessive complexity and insufficient input capability, Mount Hebron began the search for a new solution and selected an Allen & Heath dLive S Class digital system consisting of an S5000 Surface with Dante networking card, a DM48 MixRack and a DX32 Expander.
Ken Brown Jr, Mount Hebron’s technical director, notes that the previous system, which combined the console with an older digital snake, produced enough latency in the monitor feed to confuse the church’s praise musicians. ‘With the dLive there’s no delay,’ he says. ‘And the dLive’s noise floor is a lot lower so everything just sounds so much better.’ Mr Brown says the dLive’s workflow, touchscreen setup and ergonomics simplifies operation. When the church’s volunteer operators or any outside group log in, the dLive automatically selects a scene designed for their use. ‘The Bible Study Fellowship women’s bible study loves that feature,’ he shares. ‘I don’t have to leave them step-by-step instructions.’
Mount Hebron streams its worship services to YouTube and Facebook operating the dLive from a laptop equipped with Allen & Heath’s dLive Director control software. ‘It’s almost like having a second dLive Surface,’ declares Mr Brown. He records each worship service in stereo to a USB flash drive and creates a multi-track recording from the dLive’s Dante card on a laptop with Waves Tracks Live software.
Mount Hebron’s dLive S Class was installed by Robert Bernecker of Sefi Consulting, a design-build integrator. During installation, Mr Bernecker updated the dLive S Class with Allen & Heath’s version 1.4 firmware, which Mr Brown says added important new capabilities. ‘The new DCA Spill feature is awesome,’ he enthuses. ‘It brings all of the channels I’ve assigned to a DCA master up to the top layer and makes the workflow for me and the volunteers so much better.
Mr Brown had used Waves plug-ins with the previous digital mixer but claims satisfaction with the S Class’ internal effects. ‘The multi-band compressor is just what I need for my vocalists,’ he says. ‘And the dLive has all the effects I need for my drums.’
Mount Hebron hosts frequent Christian music and other events and the church presents its own Christmas and Easter productions. ‘I can’t wait to see what the dLive does for those,’ says Mr Brown. He notes that Mr Bernecker had re-commissioned the church’s system prior to installing the dLive. ‘I never really experienced his EQ in my sanctuary,’ he concludes. ‘The dLive really brought it to life.’