Adding the V to AV for Worship, Part 2With an existing audio system, the Calvary Lutheran Church decided to expand the video coverage of its services with a PTZ camera, DVD recording, rear-screen projection, and flatscreen monitors. 7/15/2010 6:05 AM Eastern
Adding the V to AV for Worship, Part 2
Jul 15, 2010 10:05 AM, With Bennett Liles
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With an existing audio system, the Calvary Lutheran Church decided to expand the video coverage of its services with a PTZ camera, DVD recording, rear-screen projection, and flatscreen monitors. John Gracyalny and Michael Benedetti of Graybow Communications are here to tell us about the solution they brought in.
OK, Michael and John, in part one we were talking about the Calvary Lutheran Church and the installation you did there. Obviously they wanted to keep costs down and keep things simple and be able to operate this stuff without having to have a lot of experts or have a lot of training. Now they do record these services—you basically provided with this job the video where as they already had the audio. So what exactly do they record in their services and what gear is used for the recording?
Gracyalny: In this situation, they were new to the whole video addition to their church, so they didn’t really want to over complicate this. They saw a need to actually record their events but were really unclear on exactly how they were going to use those recordings. For the most part they wanted the ability, more than anything else, to do that. So a simple solution was to just basically give them a program BUS feed off of the main presentation switcher straight to a DVD recorder and let them burn it to DVD recordings. They could then archive those recordings on DVD and then in the future figure out exactly what they wanted to do with that and how they wanted to approach it. They toyed with ideas of having those available on a website—maybe at some point being able to stream those, but for now, their main emphasis was just basically to archive those. And they archive not only the worship services but they have children’s choir events, which the parents would want copies of, they have weddings in there, they have funerals, and such like that that the families would want to have copies of. So burning it to directly to a DVD is a real simple way of doing it. It’s not overly complicated, it is strictly archival, but it gives them something. [Timestamp: 2:52]
And of course, they’ve got playback too. What do they use for DVD playback?
Gracyalny: Friday and Saturday evenings they have youth groups in there where they will actually show inspirational DVD features on the screen—a sort of Friday night movie night, if you will. They use it for that. There’s certain speakers or presenters that have recorded their presentations on DVD and they might feel the need to actually show parts of other peoples presentations and speeches and stuff on DVD, and the DVD player allows them to do that. [Timestamp: 3:31]
And of course they can show things from a PC? What do they use that for, song lyrics and things like that?
Gracyalny: Yeah, they can use that for song lyrics, church bulletins, upcoming events, and such. They’re actually running a worship software program on that that’s called Easy Worship software. It’s similar to a Power Point type program, but it’s specifically suited for houses of worship. With the type of templates and the way that it’s laid out makes it very user friendly for houses of worship to create their own Power Point presentation kind of slides but more spiritually oriented templates and such. [Timestamp: 4:02]
Yeah, I’ve heard of that software. It seems to be very popular. Now we were talking before about the way that you extend the infrared control, you used some Xantech equipment for that. How was that hooked up?
Gracyalny: Well, as stated in part one, the main Sony projectors we chose to control via wired remote controls, and that was strictly due to the length between the control and the projectors and the reliability we were looking for in this system. The other displays, which include two 42in. displays underneath the balcony and a third 60in. display, which is located in the Friendship room, are also tied into this system, and we wanted the ability to control those as well from the main video control center up in the balcony. So the easiest way really to do that for us, or the most cost effective way, was for us to basically extend the remote controls to those displays via the Antech remote extender systems. [Timestamp: 5:29]
Benedetti: This also allowed us to put in a local control for that 60in. monitor that was in the Friendship room. We were able to use a simple in-wall interface from SP Controls, the Pixie. [Timestamp: 5:40]
OK, and I think you have a PTZ camera or two in there.
Gracyalny: Just the one for now. They wanted to play around with one. As soon as I had that one up and running, they were already talking about what it would take to add a second or third one because they can just see the different angles they’re missing by only having one camera in there. But we put one of the Vaddio HD-18 units in there with CCU, which allows them to actually control it independently and manually and that is located up in the balcony center on the balcony rail, which pretty much covers the whole church, but for a lot of applications, it’s giving you a rear view of things—such as weddings and that sort of thing, but that’s why they are talking about adding another one. But the HD-18 camera actually has an 18X zoom on it, which is actually pretty phenomenal that, from the balcony, you could really focus in on specific areas of what’s going on in that whole sanctuary from that one location. [Timestamp: 6:55]
Adding the V to AV for Worship, Part 2
Jul 15, 2010 10:05 AM, With Bennett Liles
I guess you can put preset shots and all that in there?
Gracyalny: Absolutely, the camera is being controlled by the Vaddio ProductionView Super Joystick, and the joystick can control up to six cameras. Presently we just have the one hooked up to it. So adding additional cameras, we already have the control that’s necessary to have additional cameras built into it and that’s something we like to do is keep it open-ended in our designs for future enhancements. The ProductionView Super Joystick gives you all of the control, manually, of the camera, to choose your shot, but yes, it does store up to 16 presets per camera in there, which is really nice because there’s going to be those shots that you’re going to go for time after time—the pulpit, the lectern, the alter, and it’s really nice to just be able to press a button and just have it go there. [Timestamp: 7:59]
And you said they had an existing audio system already. How did you run the audio from that to the recorders?
Gracyalny: We worked in conjunction with their audio engineer, and we set up auxiliary BUS’s off of their existing mixing console and ran those directly straight into the DVD recorder. By sending it off of an aux BUS on their console, it gave their audio engineer the ability to decide exactly what is being sent audio wise to the DVD recorder and tell her a specific mix to the DVD recorder. [Timestamp: 8:40]
Oh, that’s good. Just the right amount of versatility just in case they want to slightly change anything, they don’t have to start pulling out wires.
So they’ve got a key pad system they use for control in there and that’s up in the balcony as well?
Benedetti: The key pad controller, I think John was speaking of that, was referring to a 60in. display panel that we have in the Friendship Room. That display in the Friendship Room can be tied into the main sanctuary system or can operate independently as its own discrete presentation system within the Friendship Room. [Timestamp: 9:20]
Sounds like a good versatile system. Now what was the time frame for getting all this stuff in? You obviously had to have a plan and they’ve got probably a lot of things going on in there and a lot of time that you can’t get in there, so how did the calendar look on this thing?
Gracyalny: Calendar for installation was basically, “You guys need to be in here by Monday, and you guys need to be out of here by Friday because we have stuff going on on the weekend.” So it was a tight schedule, we made it happen, we had to work some late hours and stuff, but we’re used to that—whatever it takes, that was our time frame. We just couldn’t be in there on the weekends because they just had too much going on, so we pretty much had to go in there and blast it out from beginning to end in a week’s time. [Timestamp: 10:09]
Well, it sounds like you made it pretty simple, with the remote control and everything. Did you have to provide any training to the people and how did they take to it?
Benedetti: Yeah, we always provide training as part of our installations. That’s one of the key factors in having a successful installation is to make sure that the people that are actually using it are comfortable with it so we do take the time to train all of our customers. [Timestamp: 10:34]
Gracyalny: In this case, the system was set up very, very user friendly because I knew that going in ahead of time what they were looking for in simplicity before the design was even drafted. So when I trained them and showed them exactly what was involved in operating this system and how everything worked, literally within 45 minutes of beginning my training session, everybody there seemed to really have a grasp on it and I completely powered down the system and said to one gentlemen, “OK, it’s Sunday morning, everything’s off, what do you do?” And after 45 minutes of training, he went through everything, turned the system on, powered it on, had it up and running, had a preset on the screen and was ready for service in 5 minutes. [Timestamp: 11:28]
Well, that’s the way it should always work.
And if you’ve got your ducks lined up in a row right the first time, that’s the way it will usually come out. So what is their reaction been so far, from the congregation, the pastors, volunteers, everybody. Have you gotten a lot of feedback on the system?
Gracyalny: From what I’ve been hearing, they’re really enjoying it. It takes their whole worship service to a different dimension. They seem to really be enjoying it. There were a lot of the older congregation—which is very common—that might [have been] a little reluctant for the changes and stuff, but once they saw exactly what it added to their church as well as to the worship services, everybody pretty much got onboard with it and I think it’s a great success that they’re having down there. [Timestamp: 12:18]
Benedetti: We heard back from them, that they’re really thrilled with Graybow’s ability to facilitate and enhance Calvary, to be able to communicate with the congregation and really reach out to the community. We provided them with the new tools and technology that they needed to really have their message seen, heard, and retained. [Timestamp: 12:39]
Well, it’s great when you can put a system in like that and do it as quickly as you were able to do it and have it come out where they just walk in and do what they need to do. That’s always the theory, but sometimes it’s not always the practice. I congratulate you on your installation for the Calvary Lutheran Church and Wilmar, Minn. That’s Graybow Communications, John Gracyalny and Michael Benedetti. Thanks to you both for being here to give us the details.
Yeah, thanks for the opportunity again, Bennett.
Yup, thanks for having us.