Posted in practice on July 7, 2017 1:52 pm EDT

Into the Minds of Industry Visionaries

A compilation of educated predictions about the future of technology in the church.











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TAGS: avl design, business, communication, education, future-proofing, technology, worship,


By Carol Badaracco Padgett

In this installment of Church Designer's Technology Focal Point column, the focal point goes plural, to “Focal Points.” The reason is because Church Designer has compiled a range of compelling responses from various church design and AVL experts interviewed in recent past issues, asking them where house of worship technology is heading through time as we approach 2020.

One question CDM asks in particular each time we sit down with these professionals gives them a chance to look ahead—to be industry visionaries—and to give us their take on which technologies and creative practices will have the most impact on church worship and outreach into the foreseeable future. The responses are telling. Here, we share them with you.

Church Designer: What developments do you think we'll see that will impact acoustics and intelligibility in churches [in 2016 and beyond]?

Nick Colleran, Vice President, Acoustics First Corp., Richmond, VA— In the first quarter of 2016 Acoustics First [published] a comprehensive series of test reports comparing traditional diffusers (pyramids and barrel shaped), math-based diffusors such as single dimension and two-dimensional quadratics, and our new three-dimensional designs. We believe this will be the first time that the various shapes have been tested under the same conditions by the same independent lab using the same testing procedure within the same time frame for all the devices. It will allow a precise, meaningful comparison of devices in order to choose what may be best for a particular purpose. [Editor’s Note: Find the first in the series of reports at (visit link).] Find the full interview here: (visit link).

Church Designer: What new advancements in lighting technology and/or control do you think will have a big impact on the church market throughout 2016, and why?

Frank Luppino, Director of Sales & Marketing, Blizzard Lighting LLC, Waukesha, WI— The biggest change for the market from our product line is a particular series, the Colorize Series. It’s convection-cooled, has wireless DMX, and it’s any-fi wireless. In the Colorize Series we’re the first in the market with a wireless chip to work with multifacets of other companies’ wireless, all in one fixture.

So now, if a church is expanding and using products from other manufacturers, ours plays with their technology. It’s not just proprietary. This type of technology advancement is huge for the church market.

Coming down the pike for control, I see a technology that’s out there that gives the ability to have a hot spot, take your iPad or smart phone, and link up with an individual device that has DMX output to it, that has wireless. So I see the ability to control lights without having to use as many wires. More lights, less wires—effectively and without issues.

Installers will complain about wireless causing issues and how they’re having to run 500 feet of wire up to lights. Take a megachurch and they have a huge wireless Internet with 500 devices banging on it at the same time. With lesser quality DMX it will cause issues with the wireless DMX. But with the technology coming down the pike, we’re overcoming these issues. And that’s a huge step forward. Find the full interview here: (visit link).

Church Designer: What new developments in digital projection do you anticipate will be a hit with the church market [heading toward the end of] 2016, and why?

Michael Bridwell, Vice President of Marketing & Home Entertainment, Digital Projection Inc., Kennesaw, GA— Laser-hybrid illumination is transforming the visual landscape within large houses of worship. Enlisting both brightness and installation flexibility, 20,000-hour illumination laser-hybrid projectors like DPI's HIGHlite Laser projectors are allowing content producers to project on walls, screens and even a sanctuary's architectural features.

Today's grand and mega-churches are delivering engaging AV experiences more akin to the live events and staging verticals than to yesterday's traditional sermons. Connecting with the congregation and pulling them into the message is the priority in these spaces, and laser-hybrid projection is the tool of choice in many of these venues. Find the full interview here: (visit link).

Church Designer: Leading into [late 2016], what are new product areas where Sony hopes to shine for churches?

Craig Harper, National Manager, Sony Faith, Park Ridge, NJ— [High definition cameras] will continue to be technology cornerstones for the faith market, especially as these products evolve with new features and capabilities, like 4K, laser light sources, new codecs, workflows and ergonomics. We’re also seeing interest from many churches in new types of storage options, such as cloud and optical disc archive, as well as asset management solutions. Find the full interview here: (visit link).

Church Designer: Lighting has LED, but what does pro audio have—what one feature or component—that is making giant strides and affecting sound in worship and entertainment spaces today?

Graham Hendry, Vice President of Applications, Engineering & Training, Tannoy, Coatbridge, Scotland, United Kingdom— Steerable line array speakers are … very popular due to their ability to steer audio to very specific locations within a coverage area. Digital beam steering has allowed the designer an alternative to labor-intensive distributed solutions. Find the full interview here: (visit link).

[Editor's note: This piece was originally published in August 2016.]





Learn more about the companies in this story:

Acoustics First Corp.


Blizzard Lighting LLC


Digital Projection


Sony Faith





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