FOR-A Corporation of America today announced The Journey, a non-denominational church based in Newark, Del., has installed a new HVS-490 video switcher as part of an effort to upgrade its online services as well as the I-MAG (image magnification) experience for its in-person services.
While The Journey is a 1080i house, the plan is to convert to 4K production within the next five years, as well as build a studio to expand its online offerings. Purchased through Avenue Systems in Milwaukee and installed in February, the new HVS-490 replaced an older FOR-A switcher to create an upgrade path to 4K.
“FOR-A has been a great product for us,” said Will Alger, production director for The Journey. “The new switcher lets us add modules as we need them, and because it’s another FOR-A, the training for our volunteers has been very smooth.”
With 2 M/Es, the HVS-490 allows The Journey to produce separate programming for their online and in-person services simultaneously. Alger said it can be uncomfortable when members see themselves worshipping on the big screens in the room. As a result, the in-person services focus more on shots of the pastor or musicians, while the online service includes more crowd shots to help them feel part of the in-person experience.
Six outputs are used during services. One output feeds the I-MAG screens on either side of the stage, while a second feeds the streaming video feed (which is also recorded). Outputs are also dedicated to a confidence monitor, a feed for TVs throughout the campus, a projector that is used for video teaching, and a secondary recorder for an ISO camera, so volunteer camera operators can review their work.
The main campus hosts four services each weekend, one on Saturday night and three on Sunday morning, with additional services on Easter and Christmas. Alger said video production is part of every service, and most services are streamed live. The Journey also holds one Sunday service each week at a high school auditorium in Hockessin, Del. While music and other elements of the service are in person, the worship message from the pastor is streamed live from the Newark campus.
To create a more cinematic look for its live streaming, The Journey also invested in new Panasonic cameras with Canon lenses last summer. “We want to create an intimate experience for people who can’t be in our room,” Alger explained. “We really want them to feel part of the service, even if they’re not physically there.”
“The vast majority of our clients are houses of worship, and many of them are volunteer-based organizations,” said Terry Rhodes, director of client and vendor relations, Avenue Systems. “FOR-A provides reliable, cost-effective solutions that are simple enough to use for the novice or volunteers, while also providing the flexibility that professionals demand. In short, they offer us peace of mind.”
When equipped with optional I/O expansion cards, the HVS-490 supports 40 inputs/18 outputs, 36 inputs/20 outputs, or 32 inputs/22 outputs, including two-channel HDMI outputs. Integrated frame synchronizers and multi viewers reduce the amount of equipment required for live production. Event memory and macro functions make it easy to setup the switcher quickly for live performances, while support for multiple control panels enables several operators to work on separate tasks. MELite™ technology extends the switcher’s 2 M/Es to 6 M/E performance, and eliminates the need for multiple switchers in a multi-monitor staging scenario. Plus, FOR-A’s FLEXaKEY™ technology transforms a traditional AUX bus into a functional mix effects with cuts, mix, wipes, keys, and DVE including full preview.