Churches, temples and cathedrals are built to amplify and enhance voices and music with beautiful natural reverberation. But today, with larger congregations and productions that are more ambitious than ever, houses of worship need a little help to make sure their message gets across loud and clear. To deliver crystal-clear speech and powerful music to an audience of hundreds or thousands, AV integrators often need to approach these installations like a concert venue – all while respecting the atmosphere and decor of the space and complementing the natural acoustics.
In a house of worship setting, voices need to sound rich, full and clearly intelligible, which requires state-of-the-art loudspeaker arrays and ultra-clean amplification. Music productions—from choral and orchestral performances to rock and hip hop—need to sound loud yet detailed, calling for advanced mixing and processing tools. And the whole audio system needs to be streamlined and easy to operate for staff, volunteers and touring crews, which means setting up a modern networked audio system.
HARMAN Professional Solutions provides high-tech audio solutions to houses of worship across the globe, empowering them to spread their word more effectively than ever. Cutting-edge technologies from AMX, JBL, Crown, BSS, Soundcraft, dbx and Martin help enrich voices, elevate music and even live-stream services in real time. From ornate temples steeped in history to modern megachurches, here’s how some of the world’s biggest houses of worship are elevating the experience with HARMAN solutions.
Daijozan Houonji Temple
To control reverberation and improve intelligibility in the 110-year old Daijozan Houonji Buddhist temple in Nagoya, Japan, Hibino Corporation deployed JBL Intellivox active beam-shaping loudspeakers and Soundcraft Si Expression digital mixers.
“It was often difficult to make out the priest’s words and there were some areas where the sermon could barely be heard,” said a spokesperson for Daijozan Houonji Temple. “A test of the Intellivox speakers using DSP to control the spread of sound, provided a major improvement in clarity. The response from visitors has been excellent.” Learn more.
To enhance sermons and choral music in the mother church of the Anglican Diocese of Wellington, David Kendall Audio partnered with supplier JPRO to outfit the space with JBL loudspeakers, Soundcraft digital mixers and BSS signal processors.
“The main objective when designing the system was to ensure that the loudspeakers distributed sound evenly in the desired areas, while minimizing unwanted reflections,” said Nicholas van Dyk, Audio System Designer at JPRO. “The JBL Intellivox and CBT column speakers delivered the coverage and clarity needed to produce properly balanced speech and music in the acoustically sensitive cathedral.” Learn more.
Linh Phong Spiritual Dharma Complex
Vietnam’s Linh Phong Spiritual Dharma Complex features a huge circular building topped by a 220-foot Buddha. To distribute high-quality sound evenly throughout the complex, Ba Sao Investment installed an end-to-end HARMAN Professional Solutions networked audio system.
“The challenge was to deliver excellent sound quality, clarity and coverage to a huge area with speakers distributed along the 50-foot high ceiling,” said Huu Tuan, Sales Manager, Ba Sao Investment. “The seamless integration and reliable performance of HARMAN products enabled us to produce quality results, and our clients are always satisfied with the quality of our audio systems.” Learn more.
Wat Pathum Wanaram Temple
To upgrade the sound system at one of Bangkok’s most famous temples, Mahajak Development deployed a range of JBL loudspeakers, Crown amplifiers, Soundcraft mixers and dbx loudspeaker management systems at Wat Pathum Wanaram’s Phrarajasatta Pavilion.
“We required an audio system that could provide adequate power and quality, and blend in aesthetically with the simple design of our modest venue,” said a spokesperson with Wat Pathum Wanaram. “Our HARMAN system is highly flexible and easy to operate, delivering impactful audio with clarity during sermons and meditation.” Learn more.
Oryun Community Church
Oryun Community Church of Seoul, South Korea recently equipped their Vision Village religious retreat and their Vision Center headquarters with state-of-the-art HARMAN Professional Solutions audio and control systems for pristine sound onstage and off.
“Oryun Vision Village requested a design with the same audio quality as the Vision Center’s main hall, using JBL VTX line arrays,” said Seungduk Seo, Tech Lab Lead at TechData Co., Ltd. “To make the system easier to operate, we suggested using AMX control panels. HARMAN’s capability to cater to projects of any scale helps us tackle large church installations and smaller spaces with ease.” Learn more.
To provide exceptional multi-purpose audio at Sarangsaem Church in Busan, South Korea, AV integrator Kinoton Korea outfitted the facility’s Great Chapel with JBL line array loudspeakers and monitors, and equipped its classrooms with JBL Control Series ceiling speakers.
“We wanted to make sure our Great Chapel could be used for a variety of events by our members and the local community,” said GyeongHwan Park, representative minister of Sarangsaem Church. “The HARMAN systems are perfectly suited to serve our needs as a church and special events space. We couldn’t have chosen a better brand to make our vision a reality.” Learn more.
Beulah Baptist Church
Beulah Missionary Baptist Church of Decatur, Georgia recently hired systems integrator STC Audio to replace its 15-year old sound system. To provide powerful sound to up to 3,000 congregants, STC equipped the church with JBL VTX V Series line array loudspeakers, Crown amplifiers and BSS signal processors.
“When the pastor speaks, everybody needs to hear him clearly,” Seldon said. “The second requirement was to make sure the system could cleanly reproduce the church band and allow the musicians to hear themselves clearly. The third was that it needed to accurately reproduce the 125-member choir.” Learn more.
Church of the Highlands
Each week, Alabama, USA’s Church of the Highlands broadcasts a video sermon from their headquarters to an average of 60,000 members at 16 other facilities across Alabama. To achieve quality key lighting for accurate video reproduction, Lighting Director Patrick Hentz deployed Martin MAC Series lighting fixtures.
“With 80% of our congregation watching the sermon via the simulcast, it’s very important that we deliver excellent video quality, and that requires consistent lighting,” said Hentz. “On the other hand, when we host youth group events and special concerts, the lighting rig enables us to deliver a stunning visual show.” Learn more.