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Installation for Grade 1 Listed Church

APi recently completed an installation for St Johns in Burford, set right in the heart of the Cotswolds.
St Johns in Burford, set right in the heart of the Cotswolds is a fine grade 1* listed building. The inside has many interesting features that have accumulated over the years since its construction began in 1175.

So unsurprisingly any works to update the sound system and add an installed camera, streaming and projection system were examined in fine detail by the DAC to ensure that the impact on the aesthetics was minimal.

Burford is a very attractive Cotswold town which brings in tourists throughout the year and because of the church's strong links to King Henry VIII, the church has a large number of visitors who stop in while exploring the town. This meant that any audio-visual equipment - especially the projection system - had to be as discreet as possible so that it would not impede on the grandeur of the space.

A loudspeaker cluster positioned on a church column, with a mosaic in the background.

Being a large evangelical Anglican congregation, the church decided that it was more inclusive to turn 90 degrees so that they could gather in a more relaxed theatre-style layout of chairs. However, for more traditional services such as funerals and remembrance Sunday they still need to be able to switch back to the original layout.

This was achieved by adding a 3rd loudspeaker so that with a simple switch the audio orientation can be changed.

The audio system is based on our favourite Allen and Heath digital desk, offering a handy touch screen plus full wireless control via iPad. This is a great step up from their existing digital desk with its microscopic screen and fairly daunting control app. A 4-channel digital amplifier gave us a good choice of equalisation options, limiting and crossover adjustment allowing their existing subwoofers to be included in the new arrangement.

Two remote HD pan tilt zoom (PTZ) cameras were installed in locations which suited both church orientations and were controlled by our own ultra-simple button control pad with backlit displays behind each button allowing the functions to change over various pages of options.

In addition to camera control, this unit also controls the video switching and streaming unit removing the need to understand a potentially baffling array of additional controls. So streaming to YouTube is just a matter of a single button push, with a monitor screen displaying both camera images, the outgoing image and the sound levels.

We set up the audio processing so that the sound was optimised for listening on a device with smaller speakers such as a tablet or laptop, compressing the music and speech to deliver a comfortable consistent level.

Two discreet winch-down projection screens in a large church.

The projection system was successfully installed using two winch-down projection screens, which were able to lift up into the aisle above the archway when not in use. This was important as this side of the church is what you see first when entering the church through the main door, so it was crucial that these screens could disappear from view.

Two laser projectors were installed in the arches on the opposing side of the nave to price a clear and bright image onto the large screens, allowing the congregation to see regardless of where they sit in the nave.

Two projectors hidden just below the arches in a church building.

The projectors were suspended just below the top of the arches, to remain as hidden as possible. The on/off control of the projectors was also programmed into the customised streaming control interface, giving the church a central control panel for both the streaming and visual systems in the church.

On the day the system was handed over we received this message from our customer, “Trial run this afternoon with band practice. All very good and epic sound. iPad App is very easy to use and so great to be able to wander around the church with it”.

To discuss how APi Sound and Visual could assist your church with a sound and projection system, please call us on 0845 5578350 or contact us online.
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