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The Buzz: Installation Spotlight: Glen Mar United Methodist Church, Ellicott City, Md.

AV Expansion 1/01/2009 7:00 AM Eastern

The Buzz: Installation Spotlight: Glen Mar United Methodist Church, Ellicott City, Md.

Jan 1, 2009 12:00 PM, Staff Report

AV Expansion




In the multipurpose room at Glen Mar United Methodist Church in Ellicott City, Md., a Yamaha M7CL-48 digital mixing board, a Biamp Systems AudiaFlex-NC audio DSP, and a Crestron Pro2 system processor control the AV.

In the multipurpose room at Glen Mar United Methodist Church in Ellicott City, Md., a Yamaha M7CL-48 digital mixing board, a Biamp Systems AudiaFlex-NC audio DSP, and a Crestron Pro2 system processor control the AV.

When Glen Mar United Methodist Church decided to expand to a new location — a 22-acre plot of land in Ellicott City, Md. — the church contacted Baltimore-based Design & Integration (DI) to create an AV system that would span several phases of planned growth. DI's major challenges involved providing great audio/video capabilities while remaining unobtrusive to the unique aesthetics of the building itself and keeping costs within the church's budget.

In 2003, representatives from Glen Mar attended DI's AV seminar for houses of worship, and when plans were finalized to start up the multiphase church expansion project, Glen Mar asked DI to design the project's AV system. DI's engineers worked with Glen Mar's project team to determine what the church's ideal AV system would include.

“We decided simplicity of use was a major requirement since we rely completely on volunteers with limited training,” says Jim Youkers, Glen Mar's audio technician. “Simplicity of use for both traditional and contemporary worship use with the ability for easy future expansion.”

In order to balance Glen Mar's vision with its budget constraints, the group decided to implement a combination of new equipment with legacy equipment the church already owned. After DI's AV design plan was approved, Glen Mar put the installation contract out for bid, and after reviewing several offers, the church decided to award the installation contract to DI with a final cost of just more than $250,000.

“This was an exciting project for us,” says Jake Rivera, president of DI. “We were on the project team early, went through the design phase under contract, and followed the project through till completion. As a result, the project had limited change orders, excellent team involvement, and therefore, I think, a better end product.”

DI has nearly a decade of experience planning and installing AV systems in houses of worship, but no former project presented as complex an interior architectural design to work with.

MULTIPURPOSE ROOM

Alexander Design Studios of Ellicott City created the building plan for Glen Mar's expansion project: a 32,000-square-foot structure that provides room for up to 600 people, which is double the church's former capacity. The new facility includes a 6,000-square-foot multipurpose room complete with a stage and sound booth, a lobby area, nursery, community room, and a central media hub.

Glen Mar's vision for the multipurpose room included an area that could be used for sermons, stage productions, and athletic events. According to Phyllis Cook, project manager for Alexander Design Studios, the solution for this variety of uses was to use a number of building materials in the room — including a poured polyurethane athletic surface for the flooring; walls made of brick, concrete block, and drywall; and sloping drywall ceilings.


The Buzz: Installation Spotlight: Glen Mar United Methodist Church, Ellicott City, Md.

Jan 1, 2009 12:00 PM, Staff Report

AV Expansion




To create a broad and even sound field, Design & Integration chose an 18in. JBL VRX918S-WH subwoofer with five JBL VRX932LA-WH line-array loudspeakers positioned in a curve.

To create a broad and even sound field, Design & Integration chose an 18in. JBL VRX918S-WH subwoofer with five JBL VRX932LA-WH line-array loudspeakers positioned in a curve.

Due to the many materials used within the space, DI ran into some acoustical problems.

“When you clapped your hands, the echo would last forever,” says Scott Wieser, DI's head of engineering.

In response, Alexander Design Studios partnered with Neil Shade of Acoustical Design Collaborative in Ruxton, Md., to determine how to ready the room for sound. An acoustical covering was added to the walls, with the exception of areas made of brick, up to 6ft. in height. Above the 6ft. level, Tectum Fabri-Tough sound panels were added.

To create a broad and even sound field within the multipurpose room, DI chose an 18in. JBL VRX918S-WH flying subwoofer with five JBL VRX932LA-WH line-array loudspeakers positioned in a curve.

In addition to acoustical challenges, DI also had to figure out how to fit four Lab.gruppen C 68:4 amplifiers within the 200-square-foot control room without positioning them too close to the sound technicians since the amps' heat and noise could create a distraction.

According to Wieser, DI's solution was to mount the amps inside the control room's drop-tile ceiling, out of sight and sound.

Hiding the amps created more space within the control room for the sound technicians and the AV equipment — which included a Yamaha M7CL-48 digital mixing board, a Biamp Systems AudiaFlex-NC audio DSP, a Crestron Pro2 control system processor, and a Crestron TPS-12B 12in. touchpanel.

When determining the position for Glen Mar's projection screens, located at the left and right sides of the stage, DI had to ensure that they did not interfere with a ventilation system located in those areas. DI chose to use two 116”×87” Draper 101184Q wall-mount screens, positioned above the vents, and a Sanyo PLC-XF60A LCD projector.

ADDITIONAL AV

While Glen Mar's multipurpose room housed the majority of the AV systems and equipment, the facility's other rooms also received upgrade treatment. For instance, five JBL Control 25T loudspeakers were arranged throughout the narthex; two 46in. Sharp Aquos LC46D64U LCD TVs were placed in both the narthex and the community room; and the nursery was also wired for television.

Glen Mar's media hub was placed in the basement and was designed as a central location connecting AV systems throughout the entire building.


The Buzz: Installation Spotlight: Glen Mar United Methodist Church, Ellicott City, Md.

Jan 1, 2009 12:00 PM, Staff Report

AV Expansion




According to Youkers, the church wanted the ability to record worship services and events and also to distribute audio and video throughout the building and between buildings. DI used Magenta Research products for video distribution throughout the building, including the 221R3001-16×16 Mondo Matrix switch and Cat-5 cabling.

“Cat-5 cable is better to use for longer runs because it doesn't degrade over distance,” Wieser says. “It can reach up to 500ft. without signal degradation, while other coaxial cables start to degrade after 100ft.”

Currently, Glen Mar's main use for the media hub is to send PowerPoint slides from a PC to all the TVs in the building. As the church continues to grow, additional buildings will be enabled to receive the same slide presentations (for example, the church's calendar of events) or live video feed of sermons and stage productions.

“[DI] designed a system that met our future plans and visions,” Youkers says.


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