Christian Revival Church has had a long-standing relationship with Sound Harmonics and so when discussions started around a new facility in Pretoria, it was logical that the church turned to Sound Harmonics for an audio solution that would be up to the task. L-Acoustics has been the church’s preferred speaker brand for many years, as it has always met and exceeded the leadership and technical team’s very high expectations.
Joseph Mandy, co-owner of Sound Harmonics headed up the project and was ably assisted by Chris Pugh, Installation & Support Manager and his team.
The project falls into what has become known as the “mega-church” category, with a seating capacity of over 7500 people, over two levels. The auditorium is fan shaped and encompasses a coverage area of 160 degrees. The throw distance from main PA point is roughly 70m to the back row of balcony seats and the width of the venue is 120m wide!
What is unique about the design is that on each side of the venue, the balcony has a descending mezzanine level that comes all the way down to the front of the venue. This would normally pose problems both in terms of acoustics and sound reinforcement but when asked about this and about how the system components were chosen, designer Mandy had this to say: “Luckily from an execution standpoint, with L-Acoustics, any venue is easy to cover. Their SoundVision 3D software is very precise and we can simulate a room with all their systems very accurately. It ’s easy to design, and choose a specific loudspeaker system for a specific need or venue. There really is no guess-work involved.”
“So, what was chosen and how was the system configured?” would be the logical next question. The system design approach is a combination of distributed and typical stereo system design. The main system is 4-Way L-Acoustics KARAi, with two flown hangs of 9 KARAi and 4 SB18 in a cardioid configuration and 2 SB28 subs on the ground per side. These arrays serve the main downstairs seating area and keep unwanted energy off the walls of the mezzanine and the balcony facing. The upstairs balcony is covererd by four arrays of 4 L-Acoustics KARAi each, while the mezzanine sections are covered by two L-Acoustics ARCS Focus each. The system is rounded off with six 8Xti built into the front of the stage, as front fill. The entire system is powered by 3 L-Acoustics LA4 and 10 LA8 Amplified controllers and controlled by L-Acoustics Network manager software.
The Pastor and lead singers also use four of L-Acoustics’ 12XT co-axial enclosure as wedge monitors.
Christian Revival Church FOH engineer, Henry Underhay was asked how he felt about the new system; “I have been a big fan of L-Acoustics for several years now. The precision of this PA is something else. It behaves the way you want, and often still surprises me when I listen to it from an objective point of view.”
And was the designer happy with the end result? “Yes! The L-Acoustics KARA system was the perfect choice for the venue. It's sounding very transparent and no shortage of SPL! The stereo image is great, with supreme clarity and tight low end. Tonality of the system is perfect throughout the venue.