The newly constructed Northland Church in Longwood, FL is far from your average worship facility. Situated in a converted skating rink that includes a 3,000-seat sanctuary and classrooms for adults and children, a daycare center, cafe, bookstore, and offices — the $42 million facility was built not just for the attending congregants but also for those who will never visit the central “distribution point.”

Northland streams its services online and coordinates with services held at other locations in Florida and across the globe, linked by six RME ADI-648 digital “snakes” and two RME MADI bridges. The 160,000sq-ft. facility is home to both new equipment as well as gear brought from Northland's previous location.

WOW!Works in Clermont, FL and its CEO Bettina Buckley supervised and managed the vendors and general contractor for Northland Church during the building project, with a very focused design philosophy that is essentially based on “a state-of-the-art repertory system that could easily adapt to the ever-changing nature of the services,” says lighting designer Bradley K. Malkus of Lightswitch Orlando, Inc. “We were also challenged to make the transition from the previous facility into this new sanctuary as comfortable as possible for the congregation. This is a large space filled with cutting edge technology. There was concern that it might be overwhelming to certain groups within the congregation, so we needed to make sure that our work was seen by everyone as an enhancement, not a distraction.” Candela Controls, Inc. in Winter Garden, FL was the lighting systems integrator.

To keep away from a large auditorium feeling while bringing a sense of home to all the devout worshippers, freelance production designer David Ellis used symbolism in the form of various shapes created from wood and metal to provide a multifaceted yet cohesive look within the space. The large area had to provide a comfortable place that would allow people “to be receptive to the Word of the Lord,” he notes.

A large broadcast control area is situated stage-right in the corner of the new building, designed to connect rooms within Northland's new facility as well as allowing interconnectivity between Northland and other sites around the world. The front of house lighting and audio mixing station is in the back of the sanctuary, much like it would be in a theatre. Texas Scenic Company of San Antonio, TX, provided and installed seven motorized electrics over the sanctuary stage.

The theatrical lighting is controlled by a networked MA Lighting grandMA system. The master is a rack-mounted replay unit in the dimmer room. There is a grandMA in the control booth used as the programming and playback interface. The network also includes a tablet PC and a PDA running grandMA software. There is a separate set of Strand controllers that take care of the sanctuary house lights as well as lighting in the lobby, cafe, and other areas. A Crestron system provides building-wide control to take care of lighting housekeeping and show action devices such as the moving video screens.

Malkus explains that one of the biggest challenges from a lighting design standpoint is creating new looks week after week and finding the time to program an exciting yet seamless and elegant show. “It is absolutely essential that the lighting does not, in any way, interrupt the connection between the congregation, the worship team, and their faith,” he says. “The Martin MAC 2000 family of fixtures is the heart of this system. They give us the ability to create an unlimited variety of looks and styles. The High End Systems DL.2 Digital Lights have also been very interesting to work with and provide a lot of inspiration for the overall look of the services. We are also in the process of adding LED fixtures to the system to help bring some architectural features to life.” Additionally, the lighting has to support the video broadcast or “distributed” nature of the church.

Staffing is another major consideration in this project. George Jackson, the church's in-house lighting designer, is tasked with designing, focusing, programming, operating, and maintaining this system each week with a minimal support staff. “We worked hard to make sure that flexibility was at the foundation of the design,” says Malkus.

Electrosonic Systems Inc.'s Chris Conte explains the nature of the AV design's “proscenium arch” or scenic bridge system, saying, “The bridge system is a key design element. The speaker clusters — left, center, right, and subwoofers — were carefully integrated into the system. Although challenges were presented including pattern blockage and coverage, we were able to overcome these issues by modifying the original speaker cluster layout and adding speakers for fill. Lighting was also carefully integrated into the bridge system.” All of the audio, video, and control systems were pre-built and preprogrammed at the Electrosonic facility in Burbank. A Peavey Media Matrix Neon system permits audio distribution within the new Northland facility.

The biggest audio challenge, Conte notes, was designing the speaker clusters and placement to evenly cover the audience area. Due to a unique seating layout and the fact that the proscenium arch was blocking some of the speaker patterns, covering the congregation with sound was extremely difficult to achieve. Another challenge was designing and integrating the Meyer Sound Constellation reverb enhancement system.

Northland's audio director Steve Groves elaborates on the sound setup, saying, “Everybody likes to hear the Constellation System in its different modes. This is a variable room acoustic system, which essentially makes it seem like you are changing the reverberation time of the room by stepping through the presets. If you close your eyes, it's pretty convincing.” Electrosonic worked very closely with Meyer Sound on the audio planning.

As for the audio controls, the consoles all function independently, but receive the audio signals from the router, [an N-Vision 416 x 384 Audio Router] except at monitors where there is a digital split taking place. The consoles have patching for local channels as well as channels coming from other sites, and all are managed by the router.

Groves adds, “We reserve channels for specific things to speed setup. For instance, we have channels set aside for three stereo keyboard sources, even though we may only have one or two on most weekends.'' He also credits the router as being an audio workhorse. “It has provided us with flexibility that we are always happy to have, since our needs can change so much from week to week.”

Getting the Divine Word out has never been easier.

NORTHLAND CHURCH

EQUIPMENT LIST

LIGHTING SYSTEM

Strand Lighting C21 dimming system with 492 channels of dimming

102 channels of motorized breakers for motorized fixtures and effects

MA Lighting grandMA control system with 4096 channels

Strand Lighting 310i with custom Crestron front end for houselights and work light control System monitoring thru Crestron interface, wireless access points, handheld remote focus, and tablet interfaces

LIGHTING FIXTURES

150 ETC Source Four Ellipsoidal

12 2kW DeSisti Fresnel

48 PAR64

16 High End Systems Studio Spot CMY

2 High End Systems DL.2 Digital Light

12 Martin Professional MAC 2000 Profile

8 Martin Professional MAC 2000 Performance

12 Martin Professional MAC 2000 Wash

24-circuit emergency transfer switch and 30kW uninterruptible power supply

Distribution for 592 circuits for house lights and ancillary circuits

Motorized rigging system and trussing with seven motorized linesets and two motorized projection screens

AUDIO SYSTEM MAIN SYSTEM

18 Meyer Sound Milo

6 Meyer Sound M3D subwoofers

2 Meyer Sound CQ-1

2 Meyer Sound CQ-2

2 Meyer Sound Galileo systems

All are equipped with RMS monitoring

MEYER SOUND CONSTELLATION SYSTEM

32 Meyer Sound UPM-1P

12 Meyer Sound UPJ-1P

26 Meyer Sound NM-4

CONSOLES

FOH Euphonix Max Air

Monitors Yamaha PM1-D 128 digital in/out, 64 analog out

Broadcast Euphonix Max Air

RECORDING

80 Input Pro Tools HD3 Accel System

Meyer HD-1 Monitors

ROUTER

N-Vision 416 x 384 Audio Router

WIRELESS

10 Channels Sennheiser 5000 series

16 Channels Sennheiser EW3001EM System

DIGITAL SNAKE

6 RME ADI-648

2 RME MADI Bridge

EFFECTS

Lexicon 960L W/2 LARK Controllers

BUILDING DISTRIBUTION

Peavey Media Matrix Neon System

AMX control Systems for Classrooms

BROADCAST/VIDEO

AMX NetLinx NI-4100 Integrated Controller

4 Apple PowerMac PC

Apple XRAID 2.3TB Drive Array

Avid/Pinnacle Thunder DDR

Barco/Folsom Encore LC Controller

4 Barco/Folsom Encore ME

2 Barco/Folsom Screen Pro II

6 Christie DS+8 8k DLP Projector

3 Da-Lite Projection Screens

3 Dell Precision 390 Intel Core 2 Duo PC

2 DNF Controls GTP-32 GPI Tally Processor

4 GVG 8900 Series Chassis 10 Bay SD Video Processing Chassis

Harris Inscriber G3 SD Graphics Generator

5 Ikegami MA-400 Multicore Cable Adaptor Base Station

5 Ikegami HR400W

NVision NV550 Universal Sync Generator

NVision NV8256 Plus Digital Routing Switcher

Panasonic AJ-D455 DVCPro VTR

Pinnacle PDS-900i SD Broadcast 3ME Production Switcher

Pioneer PRV-LX1 DVD Recorder

18 Planar/Clarity 50” RP DLP Cube

2 Sony SP UVW-1800 BetaCam VTR

4 StreamBox 7400 A/V over IP Transmitter/Receiver

2 Telecast Viper Fiber Optic Transmitter/Receiver

5 Vinton Vision11 Tripod/Head

Zandar Technologies Fusion Pro+ Multi-Viewer System

NORTHLAND CHURCH

EQUIPMENT LIST

LIGHTING SYSTEM

Strand Lighting C21 dimming system with 492 channels of dimming

102 channels of motorized breakers for motorized fixtures and effects

MA Lighting grandMA control system with 4096 channels

Strand Lighting 310i with custom Crestron front end for houselights and work light control System monitoring thru Crestron interface, wireless access points, handheld remote focus, and tablet interfaces

LIGHTING FIXTURES

150 ETC Source Four Ellipsoidal

12 2kW DeSisti Fresnel

48 PAR64

16 High End Systems Studio Spot CMY

2 High End Systems DL.2 Digital Light

12 Martin Professional MAC 2000 Profile

8 Martin Professional MAC 2000 Performance

12 Martin Professional MAC 2000 Wash

24-circuit emergency transfer switch and 30kW uninterruptible power supply

Distribution for 592 circuits for house lights and ancillary circuits

Motorized rigging system and trussing with seven motorized linesets and two motorized projection screens

AUDIO SYSTEM MAIN SYSTEM

18 Meyer Sound Milo

6 Meyer Sound M3D subwoofers

2 Meyer Sound CQ-1

2 Meyer Sound CQ-2

2 Meyer Sound Galileo systems

All are equipped with RMS monitoring

MEYER SOUND CONSTELLATION SYSTEM

32 Meyer Sound UPM-1P

12 Meyer Sound UPJ-1P

26 Meyer Sound NM-4

CONSOLES

FOH Euphonix Max Air

Monitors Yamaha PM1-D 128 digital in/out, 64 analog out

Broadcast Euphonix Max Air

RECORDING

80 Input Pro Tools HD3 Accel System

Meyer HD-1 Monitors

ROUTER

N-Vision 416 x 384 Audio Router

WIRELESS

10 Channels Sennheiser 5000 series

16 Channels Sennheiser EW3001EM System

DIGITAL SNAKE

6 RME ADI-648

2 RME MADI Bridge

EFFECTS

Lexicon 960L W/2 LARK Controllers

BUILDING DISTRIBUTION

Peavey Media Matrix Neon System

AMX control Systems for Classrooms

BROADCAST/VIDEO

AMX NetLinx NI-4100 Integrated Controller

4 Apple PowerMac PC

Apple XRAID 2.3TB Drive Array

Avid/Pinnacle Thunder DDR

Barco/Folsom Encore LC Controller

4 Barco/Folsom Encore ME

2 Barco/Folsom Screen Pro II

6 Christie DS+8 8k DLP Projector

3 Da-Lite Projection Screens

3 Dell Precision 390 Intel Core 2 Duo PC

2 DNF Controls GTP-32 GPI Tally Processor

4 GVG 8900 Series Chassis 10 Bay SD Video Processing Chassis

Harris Inscriber G3 SD Graphics Generator

5 Ikegami MA-400 Multicore Cable Adaptor Base Station

5 Ikegami HR400W

NVision NV550 Universal Sync Generator

NVision NV8256 Plus Digital Routing Switcher

Panasonic AJ-D455 DVCPro VTR

Pinnacle PDS-900i SD Broadcast 3ME Production Switcher

Pioneer PRV-LX1 DVD Recorder

18 Planar/Clarity 50” RP DLP Cube

2 Sony SP UVW-1800 BetaCam VTR

4 StreamBox 7400 A/V over IP Transmitter/Receiver

2 Telecast Viper Fiber Optic Transmitter/Receiver

5 Vinton Vision11 Tripod/Head

Zandar Technologies Fusion Pro+ Multi-Viewer System

NORTHLAND CHURCH

EQUIPMENT LIST

LIGHTING SYSTEM

Strand Lighting C21 dimming system with 492 channels of dimming

102 channels of motorized breakers for motorized fixtures and effects

MA Lighting grandMA control system with 4096 channels

Strand Lighting 310i with custom Crestron front end for houselights and work light control System monitoring thru Crestron interface, wireless access points, handheld remote focus, and tablet interfaces

LIGHTING FIXTURES

150 ETC Source Four Ellipsoidal

12 2kW DeSisti Fresnel

48 PAR64

16 High End Systems Studio Spot CMY

2 High End Systems DL.2 Digital Light

12 Martin Professional MAC 2000 Profile

8 Martin Professional MAC 2000 Performance

12 Martin Professional MAC 2000 Wash

24-circuit emergency transfer switch and 30kW uninterruptible power supply

Distribution for 592 circuits for house lights and ancillary circuits

Motorized rigging system and trussing with seven motorized linesets and two motorized projection screens

AUDIO SYSTEM MAIN SYSTEM

18 Meyer Sound Milo

6 Meyer Sound M3D subwoofers

2 Meyer Sound CQ-1

2 Meyer Sound CQ-2

2 Meyer Sound Galileo systems

All are equipped with RMS monitoring

MEYER SOUND CONSTELLATION SYSTEM

32 Meyer Sound UPM-1P

12 Meyer Sound UPJ-1P

26 Meyer Sound NM-4

CONSOLES

FOH Euphonix Max Air

Monitors Yamaha PM1-D 128 digital in/out, 64 analog out

Broadcast Euphonix Max Air

RECORDING

80 Input Pro Tools HD3 Accel System

Meyer HD-1 Monitors

ROUTER

N-Vision 416 x 384 Audio Router

WIRELESS

10 Channels Sennheiser 5000 series

16 Channels Sennheiser EW3001EM System

DIGITAL SNAKE

6 RME ADI-648

2 RME MADI Bridge

EFFECTS

Lexicon 960L W/2 LARK Controllers

BUILDING DISTRIBUTION

Peavey Media Matrix Neon System

AMX control Systems for Classrooms

BROADCAST/VIDEO

AMX NetLinx NI-4100 Integrated Controller

4 Apple PowerMac PC

Apple XRAID 2.3TB Drive Array

Avid/Pinnacle Thunder DDR

Barco/Folsom Encore LC Controller

4 Barco/Folsom Encore ME

2 Barco/Folsom Screen Pro II

6 Christie DS+8 8k DLP Projector

3 Da-Lite Projection Screens

3 Dell Precision 390 Intel Core 2 Duo PC

2 DNF Controls GTP-32 GPI Tally Processor

4 GVG 8900 Series Chassis 10 Bay SD Video Processing Chassis

Harris Inscriber G3 SD Graphics Generator

5 Ikegami MA-400 Multicore Cable Adaptor Base Station

5 Ikegami HR400W

NVision NV550 Universal Sync Generator

NVision NV8256 Plus Digital Routing Switcher

Panasonic AJ-D455 DVCPro VTR

Pinnacle PDS-900i SD Broadcast 3ME Production Switcher

Pioneer PRV-LX1 DVD Recorder

18 Planar/Clarity 50” RP DLP Cube

2 Sony SP UVW-1800 BetaCam VTR

4 StreamBox 7400 A/V over IP Transmitter/Receiver

2 Telecast Viper Fiber Optic Transmitter/Receiver

5 Vinton Vision11 Tripod/Head

Zandar Technologies Fusion Pro+ Multi-Viewer System