Lakewood Baptist Church in Gainesville, GA recently implemented two KLANG:fabrik immersive IEM mixing systems in its main worship sanctuary to provide 32 inputs and 12 individual mixes for band members, connected through the church’s existing DiGiCo SD9 front of house console.
The units were acquired through A/V systems integrator Production/Co, based in Chestnut Mountain, GA, which also installed the systems earlier this year, readying them for when the church resumed live capacity-limited and socially distanced services last June.
“They had taken their existing in-ear monitoring solution as far as it could go—they needed a more flexible and sophisticated IEM solution, and the KLANG:fabrik was it,” says Cason Cleveland, owner of Production/Co. KLANG:fabrik is “flexible” thanks to its broad compatibility with widely used audio interfaces, including MADI and Dante, and the ability to use the KLANG:app on any device (iOS, Android, Windows or Mac), or control KLANG by using the DiGiCo integration into SD-Range and Quantum consoles. And “sophisticated” because of the immersive environment that up to 16 individual musicians can create for themselves on stage via each KLANG:fabrik’s high-performance processors, all without any noticeable latency.
“The ability for the musicians on stage to completely control their own mixes was important, because the church often relies on volunteers to mix services,” adds Cleveland. “Each musician having their own app onstage means that monitoring is one less thing the front-of-house mixer has to worry about, allowing them to focus on making the house sound as good as it can be.”
Cleveland explains that the SD9’s own intrinsic routing flexibility was of assistance here: he was able to assign a feed from the inputs from the stage to the KLANG units through the console, connected via MADI, giving the stage every input needed to create local mixes. “We just copied the input assignments internally on the SD9 and assigned that to the KLANG:fabrik units—it was that simple,” he says. “It was also very helpful that we could set the KLANG units up as completely separate systems from the rest of the audio system. As a result, we can apply processing such as EQ individually, as well.”
Lakewood Baptist Church Technical Director Coltyn Cooley adds: “With the KLANG system, we more than doubled our monitoring channel count and as a result we’re able to give everyone on stage the ability to build complete mixes in their ears,” he says, referring to the eight to 10 musicians who perform for each service. “For instance, the drummer now has individual channels for kick, snare and other instruments, whereas before we could only give him a submix. Now each vocal has its own mix; before, we used to have to gang up the vocals. Then put the immersive technology on top of that and they are having their minds blown on stage! They love it.”
Cooley, who was introduced to the possibility of KLANG by Cleveland and who was sold on it after reading numerous case studies online, adds that the KLANG:fabrik has literally given the church musicians a new perspective on themselves. “We know it sounds good out here, but now they can hear just how good it sounds on stage,” he says.
Cleveland notes that the church’s musicians, worship pastors, and audio team have all been impressed by KLANG:fabrik’s performance. “The ability it gives them to spread out the mix and have better defined and detailed sound on stage means individual instruments don’t have to be as loud, which keeps overall volume better under control, another way KLANG:fabrik makes the front-of-house engineer’s job easier and also preserves the musicians’ hearing,” he concludes.