Bringingham, AL (February 18, 2011)–ESB Group (Springville, AL), tackled recent install for the Mountaintop Community Church in Birmingham, AL, creating a system based around Electro-Voice loudspeakers and amplifiers.
The challenge, says ESB Group sales engineer Andy McMillan, was that the budget was “relatively small to support that style of service in a room that seats 1,700 people.” The solution was to base the new system around Electro-Voice EVA-2082S full-range dual element line array modules, in 120 (H) x 60 (V) and 120 x 20 dispersion configurations.
The EVA main arrays used a total of six boxes on each side. Placement and patterns were determined in part by the locations of HVAC elements on the ceiling. “The ceiling is exposed — it’s very contemporary looking,” McMillan says. “And certain objects, including elements of the ventilation system, were not present on the drawings, but we saw them when we surveyed the site. So there were a lot of obstacles to get the sound around.”
McMillan adds that Stu Schatz of Electro-Voice Technical Services collaborated closely with ESB Group on working around these issues. “Our own engineers created the final design in EASE, but before we even ordered any speakers, Stu had worked up an initial proposed system in EASE, which was very helpful. But that’s the way EV service has always been: far superior to anybody else we’ve dealt with in this industry. They’ve even overnighted pieces to us at their own cost just to make sure we had something when we needed it. They’ve always taken great care of us.”
In addition to the 12 EVAs, the system uses eight subwoofers, center-hung in two arrays of four each to avoid interfering with sightlines for the large video screen. “The XLCi215 has great low-end punch,” McMillan says. “The sound engineer at the church was worried about losing punch by flying the subs, but after actually running the system, he told us that he wasn’t even using half of all the low-end the subs were giving him.”
For both front and side fills, ESB Group chose from the EVF series of two-way, front-loaded, full-range loudspeakers, in 60 (H) x 60 (V), 90 x 60, and 60 x 40 dispersion configurations. “The EVFs are great front fills,” McMillan says, “and the cool thing about using EVAs and EVFs together is that they sound similar before you even tune. So when you walk into the EVF zone it doesn’t feel different from the EVA, it feels like one solid sound. We’re very pleased with how close those boxes sound to each other.”
The system is powered by Electro-Voice Contractor Precision Series amps. “The CPS 2.12 amps sound stellar,” McMillan says, “and they are very efficient. We’re using a lot less power than the old system, but powering a much more powerful system.”
With the system now up and running, McMillan says the response has been very enthusiastic. “Everybody that has heard this system says it is 10 times better than what they had before,” he says. “It’s incredible. Every time I get on the phone with the music pastor he tells me that he can’t believe the system sounds so clear, and so good.”