An Allen & Heath SQ-6 digital mixer, DX168 expander and AR2412 expander have been installed in the Fellowship Hall at Mount Harmony Baptist Church in Matthews, North Carolina. The SQ-6 is used for mixing FOH and in-ear monitors during the church’s contemporary worship service each Sunday.
The church previously relied on an old, analogue console. The new Allen & Heath systems were supplied by Alan Conner from Audio Video Concepts. 'The SQ-6 gives them more channels, a whole bank of effects and we added two expanders for their future growth,' Mr Conner commented.
Taylor Helms is the pastor of music and worship at Mount Harmony and responsible for managing the church's tech team. He explained that a different digital mixer is also employed in the church's sanctuary. 'I have struggled to train people on that board,' he said. 'But, with the Allen & Heath, my volunteers just seem to click with it. I had one volunteer who had only used the older analogue board, so going digital kind of spooked him. But he has been like a fish in water with the Allen & Heath.'
Mr Helms saves an SQ-6 scene, ensuring services always start from the same mix, EQ and effects. 'You just hit a button and there it is,' he said. He also uses SQ-6 hot keys for tasks such as recording, noting that the flexibility provided is an added benefit.
Mount Harmony’s contemporary service includes a full band with vocalists and backing tracks. Mr Helms is also considering adding further vocalists. Mr Conner explained that the two expanders, installed at the stage, and the SQ-6’s inputs for wireless mic receivers provide the church with 48 mix channels, more than enough to handle an expanded worship band.
Mr Helms also noted that the booth is much tidier following the upgrade, with Cat-6 connections from the stage replacing the old analogue snake.
'Now, we have a full stereo setup,' Mr Helms concludes. 'That is a night and day difference. And the Allen & Heath has been a huge quality leap for us. People hear more distinctions in the music than they could before and the clarity is much better.'