KLANG:konductor’s 16 immersive mixes have given the church’s dozen-plus musicians and vocalists a new level of control over their personal soundscapes, and in the process, a new lease on creativity and performance
Founded in 1990, San Antonio’s Community Bible Church has quickly grown into one of the largest houses of worship in the region, seating 3,500 at each of its five weekend services. The church’s energetic worship band are skilled and enthusiastic, delivering a memorable worship experience every weekend. But like many live musicians, they encounter the often-challenging world of monitors, trying to balance their individual mix needs with making their own onstage audio experience as fresh as possible to keep their performances at a high level.
That got a lot easier this year, after the church installed a new KLANG:konductor to offer immersive IEM mixes for the seven vocalists and six musicians, as well as their musical guests and worship leaders. The new :konductor, purchased through pro audio retailer AVLX of Franklin, Tennessee, and which was fully integrated into the church’s audio infrastructure earlier this year by the church’s own audio team, has reinvigorated the band’s monitoring experience, giving them a new lease on their sonic life, says AJ Lebron, CBC’s Director of Audio and Production Coordinator for Events.
“I’ve been running sound at the church for about 14 years now and I’ve come to know the band and have seen how much time and energy they’ve had to spend on getting their in-ear monitoring just right,” he says. “I noticed that the mixes were becoming stale and they were regularly experiencing ear fatigue. They had stereo mixes, but they were sounding one-dimensional. They needed more space and dimensionality in their monitor mixing. I’d heard about the KLANG:konductor and checked out a demo at AVLX, and I loved it. I thought it was exactly what we needed.”
Lebron also ordered a DiGiCo DMI-MADI-B card, which is plugged into the :konductor’s rear panel, to interface with the church’s existing Avid S6L-24C monitor desk. While that console will stay in place for services to provide additional functionality, such as muting and EQ for guest vocalists and pastors, the KLANG:konductor has taken on the primary monitor-mixing tasks. He says the :konductor’s intuitive design made it easy for the church’s audio team to do its own integration, and its flexible routing—able to interface with MADI, Optocore, and Dante (a DiGiCo DMI-DANTE2 “Brooklyn” card is also on order)—means it fits seamlessly into the church’s existing infrastructure and can accommodate future expansions.
But for the dozen-plus musicians and vocalists onstage, the KLANG:konductor, which processes 128 input signals at up to 96 kHz with an astonishingly low internal processing latency of less than 0.25ms, has been a game-changer. All of them are able to manage the mixes of their Sennheiser G4 IEMs at an incredibly granular level, dialing in exactly the individual mixes they each want to hear, but also doing so using KLANG’s immersive mixing technology. That, says Lebron, offers them the sense of dimensionality that had been lacking onstage lately. “We did a two-hour training with them using their own iPads for control and you could see the difference the :konductor was making—they love it!” he says. “Guests onstage can still opt to use the system in stereo, so it’s familiar to anyone who wants to go ‘old-school,’ but that’s pretty rare. Easy to install, easy to use, and we got a great result. KLANG:konductor was the way to go.”