Upgrade Planning: Research, Homework and (Of Course) Planning All In the Mix

Have realistic expectations of what needs to be improved, purchased, or replaced. Ask yourself, does this piece of equipment help us better achieve our church’s vision?

Upgrade Planning: Research, Homework and (Of Course) Planning All In the Mix
As part of Granger Community Church's recent upgrade of their audio digital consoles, work at the church also included the install of a Nova37, a compact 3RU audio router.

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Upgrade Planning: Research, Homework and (Of Course) Planning All In the Mix

Upgrade Planning News

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Upgrade Planning: Research, Homework and (Of Course) Planning All In the Mix

Technology Resource

Worship Facilities Magazine, September-October 2017
The September-October 2017 issue of Worship Facilities Magazine offers a glance at a Granger Community Church, and their recent install of a Lawo audio mixing console system.
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Here are a few things I do when I am considering an integrator.

First off, ask for client references. When you call or visit their recommended client, ask that client to give you another reference that the integrator hasn’t already given you. Integrators will often show you their flagship install, but won’t tell you about their installs that didn’t go so well. Every integrator has a few installs that didn’t go as planned, but you can learn a lot by how they handled those challenges.

Then if you are ready to have them do some work at your church, bring them in for a small project first. Luke 16:10 says, “One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much.” I find this is true when finding an integrator. If they can’t handle a small project with excellence, then you can’t trust them with a more significant project.

Also, trust your gut. And I’m not talking about trusting your stomach after an integrator has taken you out to a nice steak dinner as you are considering working with their company. How do you feel after your conversations? Do you feel like they understand your needs and mission? Are they timely? Do you feel like you’re getting into a worthwhile partnership?

Planning Ahead

We all know that gear will eventually reach the end of life, and need to be replaced. This is obvious, right? What usually gets overlooked is planning for when this time comes.

So what often happens, churches hobble along with equipment and software that’s no longer in working order — whether it’s a computer that’s unreliable and glitchy, or an audio console that cuts in and out. Because they can get by, they sink a lot of time into making do with a defective tool.

Stewardship is about much more than saving money or avoiding purchases. It’s about placing an appropriate value on every element that exists in your organization. The money you save by not upgrading might not outweigh the cost of maintaining old technology.

We realized this when we evaluated how much we were spending to service and maintain our current projection system. When we considered the ongoing cost of ownership, it made it much easier to pull the trigger on replacing that system with an LED wall, rather than continue to service the existing system.


More About Tony Staires
Tony Staires currently works at Granger Community Church in Granger, Ind., as the Production Director. He’s worked in production and AVL integration over the past 16 years, and has worked with several Grammy and Dove Award winning artists.
Get in Touch: tstaires@gmail.com    More by Tony Staires

Latest Resource

Worship Facilities Magazine, September-October 2017
The September-October 2017 issue of Worship Facilities Magazine offers a glance at a Granger Community Church, and their recent install of a Lawo audio mixing console system.


Article Topics

Technology · Audio · Team Management · Budgeting · Leadership · Team Development · Volunteers · Client References · Equipment · Flagship · Lawo · LDI · LED Wall · All Topics

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