Posted in projects on October 4, 2016 6:45 am EDT

Focused Integration Helps Wisconsin Church Reach Out Through AVL

Clearwing Systems Integration provides and installs AVL for Northbrook Church's new sanctuary addition, helping provide greater attendee engagement in worship.

Northbrook Church, Richfield, Wis.; images courtesy of Ross Zentner.











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TAGS: architectural design, avl design, outreach, renovation, systems integration,


By Church Designer Staff

Established in 1985 in Richfield, Wis., Northbrook Church has grown to serve more than 2,000 community members. In June 2016, the church celebrated the completion of a 34,000-square-foot addition that includes an 850-seat sanctuary. Clearwing Systems Integration provided and installed the AVL portion of the sanctuary addition.

“With a project like this, there’s always this tension between the dream and [the] reality,” says Craig Bolt, pastor of media and worship environment at Northbrook Church. “Mike Jonas [Clearwing System’s project manager] and his team were always thinking about how to make the dream reality and were steps ahead to make sure they could deliver what we wanted. They offered multiple ideas and solutions that we hadn’t thought of, and when a roadblock occurred, they were taking steps to find a solution to deliver on time.”

Systems specifics

The sanctuary audio system consists of six L-Acoustics KIVA left/right arrays per side with two SB15m subwoofers flown behind the arrays in order to compensate for sight-line restrictions.

The new sanctuary is fairly deep, and with the new space, the church has started using image magnification (IMAG) on the projection screen. “We had to find a solution that would fit below the roof truss structure but also stay out of screen sight lines,” says Jonas. “We didn’t want a bunch of speakers hanging over the stage…. KIVA really was the perfect solution [because] it has excellent output in a small form-factor.”

“We had to find a solution that would fit below the roof truss structure but also stay out of screen sight lines. We didn’t want a bunch of speakers hanging over the stage.”

—Mike Jonas, Project Manager, Clearwing Systems Integration, Milwaukee, WI

In addition, it was important to Pastor Dean Stelow to have solid low-end sound. However, the building addition necessitated a bigger sound system, which could potentially be a bit much for traditional churchgoers. “We wanted to create a solid system without people feeling like they were getting blown away by bass at a rock show,” says Jonas. Clearwing deployed SB15m subwoofers to provide balance while keeping the impact available when it’s needed. “We were able to fly the SB15m subwoofers directly behind the KIVA arrays where you hardly notice at all,” states Jonas.

Outfill to the extreme left and right of the room is provided by 12XTi, delivering excellent sonic performance, clarity, and precision. The XTi Architectural Series point-source technology is particularly valuable in distributed sound reinforcement applications where listeners are located off the system axis.

Three LA4X amplifiers power the system speakers, and Clearwing Systems’ Mike Jonas and Bryan Baumgardner incorporated the Soundvision model and design of the system. Soundvision allows the calculation of sound pressure (SPL) coverage, SPL mapping, and delay coverage (or mapping) for complex sound system configurations resulting in excellent coverage of the space and superior sound. Clearwing Systems’ Trevor Powers provided training and tuned the system. “He did a great job tuning the system,” confirms Jonas. “It really sounds phenomenal.”

End analysis

The church is reportedly pleased with the results. “With the completed installation in place, the quality of our production has never been higher,” says Bolt. “We attribute a large portion of this to Clearwing and the products that they installed. We are able to execute a high level of production value, while remaining invisible to the audience, which is critical when it comes to a worship environment. We are able to set the table and create an experience for people to experience God in a whole new way.”




Learn more about the companies in this story:

Clearwing Systems Integration





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