Video on a Budget: Seek Cost-Effective Solutions Over Cutting Corners

Poorly designed and underpowered church video systems are oddly prolific. It’s your job, as a steward of the video system at your church, though, to instead push for the right tool in the right application, for maximum impact.

Video on a Budget: Seek Cost-Effective Solutions Over Cutting Corners
I can’t tell you how often I walk into churches that are using PowerPoint 2011 on a Dell desktop PC running Windows XP, along with a Sony HandyCam from 2009 set up for (unnecessary) IMAG, and a projector that is no more than 2,000 lumens, tasked to project on a large 4:3 screen.
Video on a Budget: Seek Cost-Effective Solutions Over Cutting Corners
I can’t tell you how often I walk into churches that are using PowerPoint 2011 on a Dell desktop PC running Windows XP, along with a Sony HandyCam from 2009 set up for (unnecessary) IMAG, and a projector that is no more than 2,000 lumens, tasked to project on a large 4:3 screen.

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Technology Resource

Worship Facilities Magazine, March-April 2018
The March-April 2018 issue of Worship Facilities Magazine offers articles about how to prepare, prevent and respond to church violence, a look into what church management software can do for your church community, and a piece on how a once popular nightclub venue was transitioned to become Shoreline Church's new home.
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You Get What You Pay For

No matter what area of tech that you serve, the right equipment for you is rarely the least expensive equipment to accomplish the goal at hand. Video is no exception.

Are we really telling the Greatest Story there is to tell, in the most efficient and impactful way possible?

I can’t tell you how often I walk into churches that are using PowerPoint 2011 on a Dell desktop PC running Windows XP, along with a Sony HandyCam from 2009 set up for (unnecessary) IMAG, and a projector that is no more than 2,000 lumens, tasked to project on a large 4:3 screen, all while being flooded with ambient light.

Poorly designed and underpowered church video systems are oddly prolific. It’s your job, as a steward of the video system at your church, though, to instead push for the right tool in the right application, for maximum impact.

Are we really telling the Greatest Story there is to tell, in the most efficient and impactful way possible?

Cutting Corners

When it comes to projection, the sun will always win! There is no projector in the world that can compete with the sun coming through a large window, and flooding the screen surface area with light – none!

Churches are notorious for letting budget determine their vision, and that often means underpowered projectors, a slow graphics computer, or a DIY wiring job that is nowhere near code, along with being rarely fully functional (or is frustratingly intermittent)!

In the world of church tech, video is often the least understood area. Getting a video signal on your screens is one thing, but knowing how to make it look good, and to use the medium in an impactful way, is video at a whole other level. It’s easy to cut corners when you don’t really understand the impact of what you’re cutting.

Then we wonder why it doesn’t look that great later.

Some Winning Formulas for a Small/Medium-sized Church

While the future holds great promise for affordable and high-quality video networking/distribution via NDI (IP-based video protocol), the cost-effective and reliable standard right now for pro-level HD video design, is still SDI. An SDI video cable can send HD video signals, with high-quality embedded audio, over 100 meters easily, via an inexpensive and fairly robust and resilient coaxial line.

For a season, the trend toward HDMI-over-Cat5 solutions seemed like the most “future-proof” solution, but the cost of reliable converters, or balun system, and churches self-installing the least expensive category cable they could find, leads to signal dropouts as well as occasionally unreliable results.


More About Marcus Hammond
With over a decade of church technical leadership and production experience, Marcus Hammond serves as Church Resource Director with Stark Raving Solutions, based in Lenexa, Kan. Hammond is passionate about helping local churches connect with their congregation and helping church technical teams reach a new level of success. He lives in Kansas City with his wife, Jill, and enjoys travel, Hi-Fi audio, and KC BBQ! Connect with Marcus on Twitter @marcus_hammond.
Get in Touch: marcus@starkravingsolutions.com    More by Marcus Hammond

Latest Resource

Worship Facilities Magazine, March-April 2018
The March-April 2018 issue of Worship Facilities Magazine offers articles about how to prepare, prevent and respond to church violence, a look into what church management software can do for your church community, and a piece on how a once popular nightclub venue was transitioned to become Shoreline Church's new home.


Article Topics

Technology · Video · Visual Arts · Video Production · Team Management · Budgeting · Leadership · Team Development · Application · Budget · Churches · Computer · Embellishments · Integrator · All Topics

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