A win for Victory and the d&b Y-Series

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“For me it was easy, I really like the d&b system approach. The ArrayCalc software and the whole system ethos make perfect sense to me.” For Ben Burrell of Canadian AV specialists Sapphire Sound, a relative newcomer to d&b, the harder choice was which system to choose for the newly renovated Victory Church in Lethbridge, Alberta. “Originally a school gymnasium and with all the associated acoustic challenges one might expect to encounter in such a space, the one thousand capacity room is also wider than it is deep and with a fairly low ceiling.” Keen to find a solution, Burrell took his thoughts to Trevor Nash, Regional Manager for d&b Canada.

“Ben came to me with his ideas pretty well formed,” explained Nash. “The Lead Pastor at Victory, Kelly Stickel, had already engaged acoustic consultants from RWDI Air Inc. Some very effective recommendations by them had made the room relatively dry. Stickel, a former musician and performer, was very clear about what was wanted: a system that could deliver lots of energy and impact to suit the highly dynamic musical component of their services, while remaining firmly in control, particularly in the lower frequencies.

“Ben identified the Y-Series as the ideal system, and once we had done the ArrayCalc thing together it seemed pretty clear that his suggestion was the way to go. Ben arranged for Kelly and himself to attend a Y-Series demo at a large church a couple of hours away.” Pastor Stickel was enthusiastic. “I’d heard about d&b from other pastors, but witnessing a system in action was essential. I fell in love with it right away. The biggest thing was the evenness of spread. I walked all over and couldn’t identify a hot or dead spot anywhere: I was very excited by that.”

“I knew that Kelly wanted a cardioid bass component as sound control was a priority,” said Burrell. “The church broadcasts both on national TV and online so he certainly didn’t want speech clarity compromised by an unrestrained low end. The Yi-SUBs certainly deliver on that score. And of course, the physical size of the Y-Series means that the line arrays don’t interfere with projection and/or sightlines in a venue of restricted height. The day we made the installation Trevor flew in to help tune the system. It means a great deal to have that sort of support from the manufacturer.”

“One really noticeable difference was in how we treated the choir,” explained Stickel. “Previously we could not use what was coming down the line from most of the choir mics because there was just too much room in there. Even if we limited it to one or two mic inputs it was clouded. Now straight away we could use them all. We also used to get complaints about the sound being too loud; now we run plus 10dB, compared to what we used to, and have no complaints. It just sounds so good, so much warmer and fuller, that they don’t notice the increase in level. And that of course means we have achieved exactly what I asked of Ben, higher quality and much higher energy for our music.”

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