Harman proves the saviour at disorientated church19 March 2013
It’s Harman to the rescue as interior reorientation causes audio headache at St. Andrew’s C of E Church in the Gloucester village of Churchdown. When St. Andrew’s C of E Church in the Gloucester village of Churchdown decided to reorientate its interior through 90° to better accommodate its growing congregation, it presented a real audio challenge for Kelly Gibson’s locally-based integration company Revolution Multimedia. And it was one he was able to meet with a Harman Professional solution. “The church is growing at an enormous rate,” said Gibson. “The building is extremely wide, with what are almost transepts on the side, so they decided to tear out and replace the floor, using underfloor heating as part of a complete interior makeover, and turn the seating through 90°. This has given them an enlarged capacity of 360 seats instead of the former 210.
Kelly worked with Sound Technology, the Harman Professional UK & Eire distributors. Sound Technology’s project support team assisted with computer simulations. “With the congregation now facing the long wall we knew the speakers would need to have wide dispersion. And so Sound Technology recommended the JBL CBT70J units, as they would be discreet, with no visible cables and brackets.”
JBL CBT Constant Beamwidth Technology columns are specifically designed for difficult acoustic spaces. Unlike traditional columns, JBL CBT use a true line array design combined with patented, passive technology to produce a very narrow vertical pattern (switchable between 45 and 25 degrees) which, by ensuring fewer unwanted reflections off hard surfaces such as floors and ceilings, delivers exceptional intelligibility.
The CBT70J model features 16 one-inch HF drivers and four five-inch LF drivers to deliver an even projection of full-range audio across a wide and deep audience area. All this is achieved using a cost-effective and entirely passive design, without the need for complex, and expensive, digital electronics.
Three CBT70Js in white are wall mounted at intervals high up on the long wall above the vaulted windows, while the fourth column speaker is a black CBT50LA, which is concealed up in the vaults high up among the dark beams. Two floor-standing JBL ASB 6112 1000W single 12-in subs provide LF extension. The system is matched with Crown XTi 4002 amps (driving the tops) and XTi 2002 amps for the sub bass.
The seating has been covered in cloth, providing a deadening effect to the room’s inherent reflections, and Kelly is able to run the system with very little EQ. “You can tune these speakers for either voice or music — and I opted for music,” he said.
“The feedback from the church has been fantastic — their jaws dropped when they heard it for the first time; it’s so much better than the old system they had in before and the music can be heard a lot more clearly.”