Renkus-Heinz Iconyx Series Creates Superior Sound

Our Lady of Victory Sanctuary

Lackawanna, NY | August, 2011 - Our Lady of Victory National Shrine and Basilica is one of New York's popular tourist destinations. Long renowned for its impressive collection of religious artwork and breathtaking 19th century French architecture, the church receives nearly 2,000 visitors monthly who come to attend services or simply to view its magnificent structural design and awe-inspiring collection of religious sculptures and artwork.

The building features numerous marble columns and pillars throughout its interior design. The expansive marble floor, sloped similar to that of a sports arena, provides a foundation for mahogany pews that seat up to 1,200 parishioners. The sanctuary's main altar is adorned with an assortment of marble sculptures, some standing as tall as 9 feet, and a giant pipe organ that boasts wood and metal pipes reaching up to 18 feet high.

Several glass and metal domes are another design element used prominently throughout the church to highlight its towers and others areas of special interest. The massive Great Dome, the basilica's most recognizable attribute, spans 80 feet in diameter and reaches 120 feet high at its pinnacle.

The historical basilica is visually stunning but its vaulted ceilings and abundance of hard surfaces create acoustical challenges for audio engineers during religious services. Desiring to eliminate as much reverb as possible and increase speech intelligibility, Our Lady of Victory recently installed a Renkus-Heinz Iconyx digitally steerable line array system for enhanced sound quality.

Exterior of Our Lady of Victory

Explains John Burckhalter, Pro Audio/Video Project Manager at Ronco Specialized Systems, the Rochester, New York-based company who designed and installed the Iconyx system: "We designed a pretty basic system primarily for vocal reinforcement in an extremely large reverberant space.We chose the Iconyx series due to its digitally steerable line array characteristics and pattern control."

The basilica's new high-performance audio system utilizes several Iconyx IC16 loudspeakers mounted on four marble columns flanking the main altar. Featuring audiophile-quality digital electronics and multi-channel amplifiers, the Iconyx digitally steerable array technology provides highly directional sound that can be focused on the listener, thereby eliminating reverb caused by sound bouncing off hard surfaces.

Iconyx also allows for the array's acoustic center to be raised or lowered electronically which greatly improves high frequency performance with consistent broad horizontal dispersion. "The Iconyx IC16's perform flawlessly and cover the required seating areas evenly," Burckhalter reports.

Audio signal processing and input source mixing is provided by a Biamp Nexia CS processor with a RED-1 wall controller programmed to adjust volume levels. The Iconyx speaker processing is utilized for the main equalization and delay setup. For additional sound reinforcement, several delayed JBL Control 25 speakers are mounted on each columns located at the sides and rear of the church, all powered by Crown CT series amps.

Installation of the IC16 system had minimal impact on the basilica's aesthetics. Iconyx enclosures are tall, slender and designed to flush mount so they blend invisibly into almost any architectural environment.

Al Colucci, Ronco sales engineer for the basilica project says: "Our Lady of Victory was delighted with the sound quality and clarity of the new Iconyx system. It has never sounded so clear and clean in the church. The new Renkus-Heinz speakers really live up to their claim."