Purpose Church’s roots go back to the days of the Wild West, and while the Southern California church’s sound system wasn’t quite that ancient, it was well past its “use-by” date.
Purpose Church in Pomona, CA had an outdated audio system. It’s 2,000 seat fan-shaped sanctuary with a wraparound balcony necessitates 180° of consistent coverage at every seat. Reflective surfaces abound so the room is very reverberant, and a variety of services and programs along with two distinctly different music groups dictate that any mix changes must happen instantly.
Enter Anna. 24 of them in an LCR configuration for the wide-format sanctuary. Coverages required are full room, main seating only, without the balcony seating, or even small intimate performances. Presets for all were assigned and changes occur with just a few clicks. No mechanical adjustments take place – Adaptive Performance occurs through Resolution 2 software alone.
With sanctuaries in Pomona and Claremont, California, and in Indianapolis, Indiana, Purpose Church has come a long way from holding services in a local schoolhouse. The sound system in the church’s home location in Pomona was pushing a quarter-century old—short by biblical standards but a long time for audio technology.
Modernizing the sound system was clearly in order.
Purpose’s fan-shaped sanctuary seats 1,800 to 2,000 and features a wraparound balcony that requires 180 degrees of audio coverage. The biggest challenge was getting even coverage that wide, with consistent sound quality at every seat.
That was not, however, the only challenge. The space mostly has hard, flat surfaces with little or no acoustic treatment. Tight control of sound dispersion is crucial, requiring customizable coverage. But the church holds three distinct kinds of services of different sizes, with different programs, and has two distinct praise bands. Long, complicated turnarounds between events simply are not possible, so the church needed user presets for reconfiguring the sound system.
“The room is wider than it is deep and features a stage with a band/orchestra space in front of it,” explains church audio technical director Peter Wilson. “We hoped to put in a system that could easily adapt from full room coverage to just main seating, without the balcony, or could even be dialed in smaller for more intimate events. EAW’s Anna does all of that and more.”
Working with Wilson and in consultation with EAW’s Application Support Group, audio/acoustic system designer Jeremy Rynders came up with the plan for an EAW ADAPTive system based around 24 Anna modules. Anna’s 100-degree horizontal dispersion was paramount to covering the wide seating area. “The system is a true left right center
system, with each array creating a custom-shaped, 180-degree horizontal coverage pattern,” explains Rynders.
The left and right arrays each consist of nine Anna modules hung in two rows: one row of six enclosures and one row of three. Anna modules can be hung high because they can provide any desired coverage pattern while hanging straight, without any vertical splay or array curvature. Rynders was able to keep the left and right arrays out of the
line-of-sight to the video screens, while still serving the audience seated directly below.
The center cluster, which employs two columns of three Anna modules, is virtually invisible behind a screen. EAW’s Resolution 2 simulation software allowed Rynders and Wilson to evaluate different array sizes and placements and simulate the church’s various event types to devise the required presets.
“We hoped to put in a system that could easily adapt from full room coverage to just main seating, without the balcony, or could even be dialed in smaller for more intimate events. EAW’s Anna does all of that and more.”
“EAW Resolution software is used to change the ADAPTive coverage patterns for different seating requirements and services,” Rynders explains. “All of the vocals and spoken word go through the center, which covers the entire room. Left and right are music: true stereo from farthest left to farthest right.”
Rynders concludes. “What we pull off every Sunday is complicated. This is the ideal solution for this room and gives the church exactly what it wanted.”
For more than 20 years, Jeremy Rynders has provided audio and design services, having previously spent decades as an audio engineer and audio designer at a famous Anaheim theme park. Rynders has a long-standing relationship with Goodman Audio
Services. Under the direction of Trace Goodman, Goodman Audio Services has supported major live events for studios, corporations, and others ranging from Disneyland to Dreamworks Animation to the Directors Guild of America.
Anna is the newest addition to EAW’s flagship line of Adaptive™ Systems, providing all of the benefits of Adaptive Performance in a high output mid-sized enclosure. Columns of Anna can be flown as mains or mixed with columns of Anya within the same array to extend Anya’s outstanding fidelity to even greater coverage possibilities. Like all Adaptive Systems, Anna is controlled via Resolution™ 2 software over the Dante™ network and utilizes the same standardized power and data infrastructure. Otto is the companion subwoofer for this system.
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