Tennessee Ministry Leans on Digital Projection and Da-Lite

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Digital Projection TITAN Quad projectors and Da-Lite 24-foot wide x 13.5-foot high rear-projection screens bring life to the sanctuary.Make the message come closer: That’s the objective for AV consultants working with ministries. It’s a mission that—more and more often—has video at the center.

Case in point is Germantown Baptist Church, a Germantown, TN ministry located in the suburbs of Memphis, which places equal emphasis on equipping, worshiping, and mobilizing its members and visitors throughout its programs. To keep pace with the expectations of its dedicated membership, GB C has continued to provide substantial technical system improvements, steadily moving its sight and sound capabilities forward in progressive phases in a way that promotes the three-pronged approach to ministry mentioned above.

One of the church’s trusted AV consultants on their forward path is Olympia, WA-based Omega Consultants, a firm with 25-plus years of experience working specifically with the evangelical church community. “We’ve found that when it comes to the ministry of the church, the more human senses we can communicate with—or are involved in the gospel message—the higher the impact,” said Shannon L. Ericsson, president and senior staff consultant of Omega Consultants. “Omega’s staff has developed a very unique expertise of optimizing the creation of music, with the physics of sound, light, and video, in communicating our Lord’s gospel.”

Germantown recently reached the part of the development cycle where a high-definition video projection system upgrade topped the priority list. The church had originally been visually magnifying its content—live footage of the pastor, displays of church bulletins, musical performances, and more—via a single center-projection system beaming to a portable screen. Following that, an interim system consisting of three stacked projectors had been in place, but church leadership knew that a serious, long-term upgrade had become essential.

Collaborating with Todd Foster, director of technical ministry for Germantown, and Curtiss Doss, principal at the Memphis architectural firm McGehee Nicholson Burke Architects, Omega Consultants determined that a new dual rear-projection system was needed next. Ericsson had been impressed by what he had seen from Digital Projection’s new TITAN Quad projectors, and recommended them for Germantown’s 3,000-seat capacity, fan-shaped worship center.

“That’s a four-lamp projector rated at 16,000 ANSI lumens,” Ericsson explained. “The calculations with my design showed the TITAN Quad fulfilling everything the church wanted to achieve, and was more cost-effective than other options. It was a win-win deal.”

Naturally, the projection screen was also an important part of the equation in the Germantown upgrade. To that end, Ericsson and his team specified two Da-Lite 24-foot wide x 13.5-foot high rear-projection screens for the sanctuary. “We needed to evaluate the Da-Lite screen prior to installation at Germantown, to make sure it didn’t exhibit any hot spots or localization because of the brightness of the projector,” noted Ericsson. “You don’t want to look at a rear-projection image on a screen and know exactly where the lens is. The design points that were critical for this project were very wide-angle viewing, and that it did not exhibit any lens print through or hot-spotting. Our research determined the newly formulated Da-Lite ‘Dual Vision’ model screen is very even—it worked out really well.”

The result of the two primary components together—projectors and screens—was a striking improvement over Germantown’s previous video projection setup. “We had expected,” Ericsson said, “that the TITAN Quad projectors would definitely exceed the brightness, visual acuity, clarity, color balance, and grey scale dynamics of what the church had experienced before, and they really did. Everyone saw a very noticeable difference from what Germantown had been using with the interim solution.”

David Weiss (www.dwords.com) writes extensively about AV, audio, and broadcast technology.

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