TFWM: If a church is planning to build a new worship facility, at what stage do All Pro Sound’s services come into play?
John Fuqua: Typically, we like to be involved when the basic plan is established. When this occurs, our acoustical design team can consult with the architect in the early stages; helping to avoid costly design changes. The likelihood for additional changes increases proportionately the later that we are brought into the process. No matter how good the room design is on paper, there are certain immutable laws of physics governing acoustical waves. Careful consideration must be given to these factors when planning an enclosed space for large numbers of people. Combined meetings with both the church and architect are invaluable to this effort.
TFWM: What approach do you suggest for solidifying a strong, working relationship with an architect?
JF: A. ESTABLISH RELATIONSHIPS. Working hand in hand with the architect is the only way to arrive at the best design for a project. If details are ironed out early, the vital systems (audio, video & lighting) can be designed into the project instead of being added on as an afterthought. We always strive to have an open relationship with the project architect to assure the best result for the client.
B. COMMUNICATE EFFECTIVELY AND OFTEN. Maintaining clear communication with the architect is very important. Integrated systems are just that: integrated into the structure and design of the venue. Keeping open communication with the architect enhances the relationship and helps to solidify the understanding of why, where, and how systems can be integrated. Some architects can be very stubborn if you wait until later in the project to reveal the components of the audio, video, and lighting systems.
C. REMOVE OBSTACLES TO COMMUNICATION. We equip our clients upfront with a basic understanding of their system’s requirements so that they can interact knowledgeably with the architect and our design team. Clients thus enabled are better able to effectively communicate their audio/video/lighting needs. The best results are achieved when communication involves the client, the architect, and our design team.
D. HAVE A CLEAR UNDERSTANDING OF THE DESIRED RESULTS. In many cases, the systems integrator is not involved in the initial meetings and may not get a clear picture of budget, systems desires and other factors that can affect the project. A systems integrator must establish the desires, needs and wants of the owner and be sure these are properly represented to the architect so that everyone is always on the same page.
TFWM: Can you describe a challenging church project— how did you approach the challenge and what solution did you implement?
JF: We worked with a church a few years ago that had a preliminary design for rear projection chambers above the stage area in a very wide fan shaped room (nearly 180 degrees!). The chamber’s orientation did not allow the congregation seated in the outer sections to see the video screens at all. Our team worked with the architect, builder and owner to solve the problem and redesign the chambers to be properly oriented to the audience. This was a major undertaking due to the progress of construction. All parties agreed and we provided a 3D model of the design that allowed everyone to see the problem and the solution. The synergy between architect, builder and systems integrator has to be open and trusting so that the best results are attained.
TFWM: When planning audio and video systems for multi-venue, where do churches get bogged down the most?
JF: The main bog occurs when there is not a clear understanding of the desires for integration between locations. This must be addressed early to avoid compatibility issues. Another issue that can happen is the relentless march of technology. A facility that is a few years old builds a new off-site venue and the technologies either have to be upgraded on the older site or some integration may be difficult. Careful planning and a forward thinking integrator will help!
TFWM: How does All Pro Sound differentiate itself from other companies?
JF: We desire to work with the client and the project managers from beginning to completion. We have found this to be the most cost effective approach, and it continues to produce the most consistent results. HOW clients, as a rule, desire to work with one-stop shops whenever possibl.. there is no finger pointing and all the responsibility rests with our team. From acoustical analysis to infrastructure – all the way to the completed project, including training and support – there are no gaps! We are application engineers, meaning that we are first and foremost committed to the overall quality of the project. We integrate equipment and system designs that will best get the job done in the most effective manner. We are not bound to any one manufacturer or brand, and we make sure that the design fits the application. Most importantly, we are a relationship based company. Our desire is to create a lasting relationship with every client; thus becoming their trusted A/V solutions provider for a lifetime.