The Power of Good
AV East Relies on LynTec AVL Power Distribution and Control Solution For Gathering Place’s Multi-Use Venue and Retail Space
The Gathering Place is a Georgia ministry, known in its community for mentoring and encouraging youth to become faithful, dependable, and purpose-driven leaders. This year, the organization opened a newly built ministry center in Brunswick, Georgia, featuring a thrift store and café, aptly named Gather. The space was designed around a vision for modularity and adaptability, mirroring the organization’s core mission. To that end, not only does Gather serve up coffee, breakfast, and lunch, with a side of sustainable retail, but it also doubles as a live entertainment venue for bands and rentable conference and meeting space.
The visionary and inspiring space required the latest audio, video, and lighting (AVL) systems for its metamorphosis. In addition to a large 9×20 LED Nation video wall flanking one wall and an ETC lighting kit consisting of six color source PARs on a batten for the stage, this convertible space needed a background music and PA system with the power to support live music events and feature easy, intuitive operation by the staff and student volunteers. Gather called upon integration fimr AV East for the design and install of the system.
“When they told me they wanted a PA, that’s when I knew I was going to have to put in a rock-solid power backbone,” said Anthony Stubelek, owner of AV East and the affiliated Rockstudio Recording. “My goal was to protect their equipment — their investment — so it would last for years to come as well asmaking it very easy for them to turn everything on and off.”
Turning on and off audio, video, and lighting systems — aka power distribution and control — sounds simple enough, but it can be surprisingly complex and a point that can be easily overlooked in system installs. Conventional wisdom is to simply rely on the building’s main breaker panel for administering power, but that thinking has its pitfalls. Without careful consideration of how power should be handled for the vast number of digital AVL components installed today, workflow and equipment performance can quickly degrade, costing organizations a lot of time and money to remedy. Stubelek, who also spends many months out of the year as a touring sound engineer, prioritizes proper AVL power distribution and control for several reasons.
“Nobody should have that much risk going to a live panel to turn a breaker one and off by hand,” said Stubelek. “It’s not great for the breaker and it’s certainly not great for the person who doesn’t know what they’re doing.”
Indeed, standard breakers are not designed to be the hard on/off control for AVL systems that are used daily. In fact, using breakers as switches can violate local and federal electric codes. Over time, breakers that are repeatedly manually switched on and off will become worn out and fail, increasing the risk fires.
“It’s also an annoyance for the customer,” said Stubelek. “It’s very easy to flip the wrong breakers and get confused in there.”
Stubelek sums up another reason for a dedicated AVL power control system: “It’s also not a great situation to have to walk around your property and turn on speakers or power amps, one by one. Back in the day, if you had a rack full of power amps, it was easier to turn the PA on properly because everything was in one place. But nowadays, with powered speakers being the absolute standard, it’s essential to have a central location to turn those outlets on. That’s when I really started looking for a solution that could handle that task and found LynTec. They’ve become a standard for my installs.”
For Gather, Stubelek installed a pair of RCF TTW+ 4-A wide directivity active two-way point source speakers as well as RCF 9004-AS subwoofer on wheels for each side. The subs are only wheeled in for performances.
“They wheel out the racks of clothing and they wheel the subwoofers in,” said Stubelek. “There’s a set of outlets on the ground that they plug into that are tied to and turn on with the relay panel.”
That panel is LynTec’s flagship RPC Series — the multi-award-winning, patented power control solution from which all LynTec’s innovative power control solutions stem and the premier choice among pro AVL designers, consultants, and integrators. Based on the G3 Powerlink hardware platform by Square D and engineered to simplify build-outs by accelerating the installation process, the power control decreases operating costs with simple wiring that allows electricians to complete installs quickly and easily, and removes additional steps, costs, and space needed to install a separate relay panel. It can control lighting and AV systems across multiple control zones using multiple control protocols (HTTP, Telnet, sACN, DMX, and RS-232).
From LynTec’s GUI, users can select the protocol for each zone as well as set up, troubleshoot, control, and monitor the status remotely across existing networks from any connected computer or handheld smart device. The system can send alert notifications via text or email to warn of panel anomalies. The built-in browser interface and Android and Apple apps ensure users can monitor and control connected AVL systems from any remote location via smartphone, tablet, or laptop. In addition, it can be directly and easily controlled by the QSC Q-SYS™ Platform from a simple preprogrammed plug-in.
For Gather, it provided simple, remote on/off control and sequencing for the PA system in one panel. As a result, everything is properly powered up and down, ensuring longer equipment life. Turning on the PA system is as easy and as fast as a working a light switch. Staff and volunteers only have to hit the on or off button for the panel in the electrical closet or the secondary switch installed in front of house.
“It’s a powerful solution that checks on the boxes — longevity, ease of use, affordability, and reliability. It’s all there,” said Stubelek.