Classic Sanctuary Gets a Modern Sound with Iconyx

Hershey, PA | March, 2010 - St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church has updated their 1960s-vintage sanctuary with a new Iconyx system, meeting the needs of both traditional and contemporary worship.

As Dr. Bob Griffin of Baltimore-based Design and Integration observes, it was also an important consideration in designing the church's new sound system. "Speech intelligibility and focused coverage are always high priorities, particularly in a very reverberant space such as this one," he says. "But it was also important to create a system with a high degree of musicality, to support the church's growing demand for a contemporary, praise band-based sound."

To provide uniform coverage throughout the 800-seat sanctuary, Griffin opted for a system centered on a pair of Renkus-Heinz Iconyx IC24-R columns, a high-performance, self-powered system capable of up to twelve individually steered beams via its RHAON DSP control.

"The Iconyx low-profile design was another important factor in maintaining the building's classic architectural aesthetics, says Griffin. "Some of the earlier proposals they had received involved systems that would have had a significant visual impact. While that's fine for a modern rock church, it would have been somewhat out of place in their sanctuary. With the Iconyx, even though it's a very tall box, we were able to mount it on the front wall in a way that blended very nicely with the space. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if many of the congregants hadn't even noticed there were new speakers, at least until they heard them."

Indeed, the new system's performance was immediately noted by staff and congregation alike, with Parish Manager Barbara Hasson referring to the new installation as "our Christmas miracle."

Griffin cites the Iconyx self-powered, self-contained design as integral to the success of the project.

"By being able to use two speakers instead of six or eight, and eliminating the need for external amplification and all the associated connectivity, we were able to realize a better result with minimal impact on their budget. It's always a real pleasure to complete a project that looks great, sounds great and makes the client happy."