another brick in the wall part 1

as long as i’ve been her victim, i’ve done really well to keep you guys out of it. it’s not something you need to be bothered with and it’s not worth slandering someone over. i learned along time ago don’t sent email out of emotion.  So i’ve gotten to take some time to sit revalue and think for a while.  The typical audience of this blog know me and know the plight that is common with her.  A few weeks ago she suggested that she hire someone to come and fix our sound system.  The worship leader came up to me cautiously telling me what her plan was and I enthusiastically consented.  I figured if she was willing to spend the money to bring in a professional who know what they were doing better than the rest of us, great!  If it was a true professional then they would also be able to more critically assess issues that go beyond the wires and circuits and be hopefully be taken with more authority than coming from me.

So this past thursday she sent me a text message:

– mobile
1/26/12 1:38 PM 4 days ago
Pricilla: (1/2) Hi John… Just wanted to let u know that a sound engineer will b at practice tonight at 6 pm. Thank u so much for being open to the idea! I greatly, 1:36 PM
Pricilla: (2/2) greatly appreciate it! 1:36 PM
So he comes that evening and this is what he finds:
From: Danny 
Sent: Monday, January 30, 2012 16:20
Subject: Sound system review

First of all, I would like to thank you for allowing me to visit your facility and trusting me to evaluate your audio equipment. My main goal is to take your system to its full potential thus allowing your services to run as smooth as possible no matter who is sitting behind the desk. Here is a list of problems I found while listening to the system both with my iPod and the praise team (without getting too technical).

1) The overall sound is a bit harsh, lacks body and midrange. The problem is in the equalization (both on the desk and in the DriveRack) and uneven level sends to each speaker component. This can easily be resolved by resetting the equalizer to flat (on the DriveRack) and by correcting output levels (on the DriveRack and the amplifiers).
2) The overall sound was too “restricted”. When the main volume was raised, I could clearly hear the limiter kicking in. Upon looking through the mixer, I could see that most channels are being over-compressed. I would’ve liked to have looked at the DriveRack because I suspect there is a problem with the compressors on there as well. This problem can be solved by adjusting each individual channel  as well as the DriveRack.
3) Problems with gain structure. When I looked at the mix desk, I saw that the main volume was lowered quite a bit. When I heard the band start up, I could tell that the mixer was unbalanced. Vocals were louder than the rest of the instruments, which led to the lowering of the main volume, which reduced the volume of other channels that were already too low. That’s why you can’t hear the choir, violin or sax. This issue can be fixed by resetting the gains on the mix desk.
4) Choir mics sounded “hollow” (in my headphones). The simple explanation is that these mics are too close together. Spacing them a bit further apart will help.
On stage, the only real problem I found was the location and volume of the guitar and bass amplifiers. Relocating the guitar amps (off stage, if possible) would really help bring the overall stage volume down. It will also clean up your stage, which will help when filming for television or internet. You could also reduce the volume (or completely get rid of) the bass amplifier. It is going directly into the mixer, so the tone will not change much. I also recommend your musicians look into getting some in-ear headphones. This will help them hear their mix better at a lower volume, which will encourage them to turn their amps down and play softer. This is another way to help lower stage volume. Quality in-ear headphones aren’t that expensive. carries most brands at a discount. For health purposes, musicians should not share earbuds. This is why they should look into investing in their own set. I will gladly make recommendations of some brands I have personally used in the past, usually under $40.
The last issue I would like to address has to do with John, the head of your A/V department. I didn’t get much cooperation from him. I had some questions about the system in general but before I knew it, he was gone. He made it pretty clear that he did not like the fact that I was there. If I did anything to offend him, I will gladly sit down with John and discuss what bothered him. People on the praise team and volunteers alike stated that they are afraid to ask for anything from him because he is quick to get upset. I have also heard from Priscilla that he does not take constructive criticism well. Everyone that works with John obviously care about him and they feel he has so much potential as a leader and an engineer but his attitude is holding him back. As a fellow engineer who has worked with some of the best and most demanding clients, I know how frustrating this industry can be. You have to be mature both mentally and spiritually to allow good criticism in and let the negative slide right off. There is a lot of give and take. You HAVE to compromise and be patient. Most importantly, you have to be willing to SERVE.
Once again, thank you for trusting me with this evaluation. I look forward to going back soon and working with you and your staff to address the issues stated here. I would also like to schedule a meeting to go over the details of how this will be accomplished. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me via email or telephone. God bless you.
yeah.. So stay tuned tomorrow for my response.
(the previously mentioned email did not have any confidentially clause affixed to it or any contact in place deeming any discovery privilege to the parties involved)

2 thoughts on “another brick in the wall part 1”

  1. oh no she did not. well as you well know iam at the family church in charge of the youth media team. iam also on the adult media team and have helped in the installation of our new sound and video equipment. from laying cable, cat5 cable to installing overhead trus and lighting fixtures, i can not hold back anymore. one reason iam not there at agcc has nothing to do with the media team or you john. can i have permission to bring in a holy spirit filled worship/choir director to find out whats wrong there and have everone stop blaming the media dept or director? it does not take much brains to figure out where 1/2 the problems are coming from and ITS NOT THE MEDIA DEPT OR it director. Please John dont give up and just brush it off. Jesus sees you heart and all the effort you have put into this ministry. Plus you have a GREAT wife who is supportive and is proud of you. dont back down and keep you head high. I have also appreciated everything you have done and shown me. Iam now using all this experience I gain from you to expand our ministry at where Iam at and I always brag on you that YOU are the best A/V director/manager I have the great pleasure to work for. i will be praying for you always. love ya John. guy

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