In today’s house of worship market, congregations across the nation are updating their production capabilities in order to stay current with the latest technology advancements and better complement their worship services. Looking to complete a retrofit update to their existing lighting system to better complement their live HD broadcasts, Northcrest Baptist Church in Meridian, MS, turned to Creative Sound and Lighting who supplied them with a comprehensive lighting package that included PLProfile4, PL3 and PLCyc LED luminaires along with a Vision.net Control System, a 250ML Control Console, Rama Fresnels, plus a C21 Dimmer Rack and S21 LED Raceway from Philips Strand Lighting and Philips Selecon.
“Our partnership with Northcrest Baptist began after we attended a convention in New Orleans and they invited us to do a demo of lighting, audio, and video solutions,” began Russell Byas, Creative Sound and Lighting. “During the demo we found they were currently operating with an older 48-channel dimmer rack and a limited number of PAR 64’s with a few older ellipsoidals. They wanted to create a new second lighting position further back in the space with instruments that could provide rich color mixing for their HD broadcasts, plus they wanted to update their full control system. Being mindful of their budget, we needed to bring them the latest in dependable lighting technology, so we created a complete package with lighting tools from Philips Strand Lighting and Philips Selecon.”
Getting to work on the system, Byas and his team began with an update to the dimming package. Knowing the old 48-channel dimmer system could no longer handle the load requirements, they installed a C21 dimming system from Philips Strand Lighting.
“One of the mandates they had on the project was that they wanted a dimming system that would still be working in 10 years and would be rock-solid dependable. The C21 rack is very durable and you know it will stand the test of time.” Strand Lighting has millions of dimmers in the industry that have been functioning without fail for decades.
The C21 Dimmer System represents premium performance and high value for all levels of users and may be fully populated with dual IGBT dimmers or mixed with standard SSR dimmers and True Sine Wave Modules in the same rack. Modules are also available for fluorescent and low voltage dimming as well as sine wave and non-dim modules for power switching. C21 Dimmer systems feature a universal 24 and 48-module rack design that provides support for 90-260 volt operation.
Next, Byas took on the job of creating the new second lighting location. Keeping budget concerns in mind, he decided that in order to keep the installation and wiring costs at a minimum, installing an S21 LED Raceway from Philips Strand Lighting directly at the location itself would be the best option.
He explains, “We are using the S21 LED system in the new second location so that we could quickly create the entire lighting infrastructure directly at the location where needed. We also love the fact that we can combine the relay modules for the LED fixtures with the silent IGBT dimming modules for the conventional fixtures. The S21 dimming systems were quick and easy to install and then we were off and running.”
The S21 LED Raceway is a configurable power and data distribution system for use with LED luminaires plus all conventional lighting sources. Three standard modules may be fitted into the Raceway; a dual IGBT dimmer for conventional loads, a dual relay module with power and DMX connectors for use with LED luminaires, and a Quad power supply module. Each S21 LED raceway can support any combination of three modules and may be ordered with a range of hangers to support a variety of installation configurations.
Now looking to populate the new lighting position with the rich LED color mixing fixtures desired along with a few new conventional fixtures, Byas focused on the PLProfile4 and PL3 LED luminaires along with Rama Fresnels from Philips Selecon.
“As far as the LED lighting goes, we wanted to use the PL3 and PLProfile4 luminaires because I don’t think there are other products out there that could handle the throw distances needed from the new location while still giving us the rich color saturation needed. The church really wanted great color mixing abilities for both the choir area and the main stage, so we used two PL3 and two PLProfile4 luminaires hitting each of the locations giving them eight total LED fixtures each throwing approximately 50 feet and they are giving us unbelievable saturation.”
The PLProfile4 LED luminaire is an innovative combination of LED source technology and precision optical design, that expands the family of PL lighting fixtures and uses four high-power, RGBW LED chips to deliver endless color options along with precise beam control and pattern projections to give lighting designers everything they desire in a powerful and compact spot luminaire.
The PL3 Focusing Wash luminaire is a focusable wash light for all lighting applications harnessing the power of three LED light engines to produce light levels comparable to a 1000W fresnel, but with a power consumption of less than 400 watts.
“With the Rama Fresnels, I simply love how rock-solid and dependable they are. Always keeping in mind that we want our systems to be as trouble-free for our clients, the Rama fixtures are a fantastic option with their power and long-lamp life.”
The Rama Fresnel features exceptional performance and operational capabilities from a technologically advanced range using an internal heat management system and a Fast Focus Technology option providing outstanding light output and unmatched beam quality.
As the second location lighting was now in place, Northcrest Baptist also wanted to give their baptismal area a little bit of a facelift as well, and so Byas decided to install PLCyc LED luminaires from Philips Selecon to give the services a little extra life.
“Needing to wash an area approximately 16’ tall x 8’ wide, we wanted the same rich color mixing provided by the PLProfile4 and PL3, so we decided to install three PLCyc luminaires. Since they all operate from the same LED light engine, we knew the color matching would be spot on, plus since we were able to daisy-chain them all together we could operate all three from a single 20A circuit which alleviated any additional power concerns.”
A breakthrough in cyclorama lighting, the PLCyc LED luminaire delivers smooth and even color in a compact, light-weight design using only 120 watts to illuminate drops up to 16’ high. Each luminaire can replace the equivalent of a traditional 4-color, 500W Cyc light and multiple units can be powered from a single circuit using our convenient Powercon cabling system along with standard DMX cables.
With all the dimming and lighting systems in place, it was time to complete the project with the installation of the control systems. With an outdated lighting console currently in place, Byas needed to install a control system that would be able to handle the needs of an intelligent lighting system, but one that would also be easy to program and operate as the church often uses volunteer technicians. To accomplish this, a Philips Strand Lighting 250ML control console and Vision.net control system were installed for maximum flexibility and control.
Byas added, “To be honest, I was not initially sold on the use of the 250ML console, but once we started comparing it to comparable boards on the market I found it to be much more user-friendly as far as programming LED and intelligent lighting with many more capabilities. Plus, in the future, when the church decides to expand into moving lights, they will have the capability already in place. Most comparable boards are fader-based control, but the 250ML has both fader and encoder wheel controls giving the programmer so many avenues to create a show. When we were doing the commissioning of the system, I would say that within an hour the church technician John David Ainsworth was creating his own cues and scenes right off the bat.”
The next evolution of the popular Series 200 console, the 250 ML console features four encoders and an LCD display screen for quick and easy automated lighting and LED control. Along with all the standard features found on a preset desk, the 250 ML control console is ideal for smaller productions with a hybrid of lighting instruments.
“When it came down to the architectural control stations, the Vision.net system was perfect for this application because since the church often uses volunteers they now have a 7” touchscreen along with a series of wall stations that give them the ability to quickly and easily change the lighting looks for any need they might have. If they want to have choir practice, or if they need a wedding scene, they don’t need John David on site to run the console. Any of the volunteers can call up the desired looks on the touchscreen and wall stations with the simple touch of a button, plus we were able to put layers of security into the touchscreen where someone can enter a password to access a little bit deeper lighting control if needed.”
Vision.net touchscreen technology is designed to bring exceptional control and flexibility to any project by providing a wide range of fully scalable solutions. Easy to set up and program, touchscreens can be combined with wall stations where any system command may be programmed to any pushbutton in your system for exceptional flexibility.
Byas concluded, “When looking at the products to put into an installation, we try to focus on what the customer needs and their budget. We are not always so brand specific, but for this installation with their desire to have rich LED color-mixing and dependable dimming with quick and easy lighting control, the complete package from Philips Strand Lighting and Philips Selecon was the obvious choice for us. When we were going through the tech training at Philips Entertainment we found that the warranty and support services provided were second to none. We didn’t want to specify fixtures, dimming and control that we would have to be fixing once per year, and in my opinion the most attractive benefit of using the Strand and Selecon systems is the quality, durability, and support. I bet that if I picked up the phone right now, I could speak to a live support technician and immediately begin the process of troubleshooting any issues that may arise. That’s a significant advantage.”
Worship facility designers and technicians interested in contacting Creative Sound and Lighting can do so by calling 1-888-865-8195 or by visiting www.creativesoundsolution.com.
Philips Strand Lighting and Philips Selecon offer the world's most comprehensive and competitive range of luminaires, dimming equipment, control systems and software to answer the creative needs of lighting designers working in theatre, television, film, themed environments and sophisticated architectural applications. www.strandlighting.com. www.seleconlight.com