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Virginia Icon Gets Audio Mixing Infrastructure Upgrade

Evangelical Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va., replaces its entire complement of consoles with Digico SD5, SD10 and SD11 desks.

By Church Designer Staff   •  January 11, 2018 2:37 pm EST

Tags: audio, audio upgrade, digital audio networking, sound reinforcement, worship space,

Liberty University in Lynchburg,Va., the largest evangelical Christian university in the world and the largest private non-profit university in the United Stateswas founded in 1956 by a group of 35 worshippers at local Thomas Road Baptist Church, which has since grown to more than 24,000 members. Both make extensive use of media technology as part of their evangelical and educational missions, and now both are replacing their entire complement of main audio mixing consoles with Digico SD-Series desks.

Multi-usage

At Liberty University, the college’s newly expanded School of Music -- which merged Liberty’s Department of Music and Humanities and the Department of Worship and Music Studies into a large, comprehensive, and world-class university music school into a new building -- has installed a Digico SD5 and SD10 for front of house and monitor mixing in the building’s performance hall, as well as a Digico SD11 in the department’s mixing lab where students are taught to mix on a professional console.

At Thomas Road Baptist Church, two Digico SD10 consoles now serve as the FOH and monitor mix platforms in the 6,000-seat sanctuary that opened in 2016. The new Digico SD-Series consoles were purchased and installed over the past 18 months through Pro Sound & Video of Pensacola, Fla.

In addition, two Digico SD10 mixers were recently delivered for Liberty University’s Event Production department, where they will be available for Convocation, North America's largest weekly gathering of Christian students, and for deployment for a wide range of applications across the university’s event venues.

21st-century sound

Of the new Digico SD-Series consoles for FOH and monitor mixing in the school’s and church’s various venues, Michael Gerringer, AV architect/manager for event support, large venues and content delivery for Liberty University’s Infrastructure media operations, reports, “We needed to become more road-ready, more rider-ready, to meet the needs of contemporary music performances. Also, we wanted to be able to run Waves plug-ins in an integrated digital-audio environment. This would enable us to streamline our workflows at the university and church and integrate with other systems connecting over Dante.”

Gerringer cites benefits that come with Digico’s SD consoles, such as a high degree of flexibility when it comes to configuring the consoles’ work surfaces and I/O matrixes. “Routing is incredibly easy, and we can set it up so that we have the input channel and the output wherever it’s most convenient for each user,” he says. In addition, the SD consoles offer virtual soundcheck functionality that goes beyond live performances, allowing users to tweak live recordings that will add to the school’s and church’s inventory of media content and training possibilities.

In particular, the SD11 serves a very foundational function as the teaching platform that will introduce Liberty University media-arts technology students, many of whom will go on to develop their skills further in the church’s venues and the Event Production department, to a real-world mixing environment.

The Digico consoles represent a true inflection point for Liberty University’s audio technology evolution, as well as a personal one, Gerringer reports. “The SD console has changed how I mix,” he says, and also when he mixes front of house at Thomas Road Baptist Church. “The SD sound is cleaner and clearer. I’m not spending time fixing the sound—what I put in is what comes out. It’s incredibly transparent sounding. It’s a game changer for us.”

For more details on Liberty University and Thomas Road Baptist Church, see: http://www.liberty.edu and http://www.trbc.org, respectively. Pro Sound & Video can be found here: http://www.prosound.net.


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