Ohio’s Fairhaven Church Handles Multiple Feeds of Sunday Worship With FOR-A Video Switcher

Fairhaven Church recently remodeled their worship facility on its Centerville, Ohio, campus. The facility facelift included new seating for more than 1,500 people, updated house lighting, and a complete AV overhaul built around a new FOR-A HVS-2000 HANABI video switcher.

Paired with the FOR-A’s 3320OU large control panel, the HVS-2000 switcher has 2 M/Es and 4 MELites. The switcher is used to display graphics on the I-MAG (image magnification) screen in the church, while simultaneously providing live video outputs for streaming to Facebook Live, YouTube Live, and the church’s website. The Centerville campus also shares a separate feed of its worship services to its three other campuses around Dayton, while using the switcher’s AUX outputs to feed monitors for the band and crew members in Centerville.

Rachel Sprotberry, live video director, learned about FOR-A switchers while touring another church. “It’s so functional, so volunteer friendly,” she said. “We have a lot of functionality for big events. I really like the control panel – there’s a tactile button for every function you need. The FOR-A was a huge upgrade, and the price point was very helpful.”

At least eight cameras are used for each service, including small cameras that highlight band instruments and three PTZ cameras that mostly provide wide shots for the online feed. Before, the church ran cables from each camera to the switcher. Now, there are I/O ports throughout the facility, so cameras can be connected via SDI or fiber.

Fairhaven varies its video feeds for its audiences. For example, Sprotberry said the in-house coverage rarely includes wide shots, but the online feed relies on wide shots for much of its coverage. “The video experience in the room is different than what we give to our campuses and online audiences,” she explained. “The ability to dedicate feeds to our specific audiences has been huge for us.”

“The client’s biggest priorities were flexibility and usability,” added Tim Corder, director of strategic accounts – house of worship for Diversified, which handled the AV installation. “Because of the number of concurrent destinations and unique program needs, the specific features of the FOR-A were really important to maximize the usability of what could be a very complex system.”

Corder said the biggest challenge for the project was successfully integrating the innovative AV system into the existing space while the facility was renovated and the congregation continued to meet in the space. After a six-week install – a comprehensive project that included lighting, loudspeakers, intercoms, an expansion of the Dante audio network, and a complete control room overhaul – the system went live in late December 2019.

According to Laramie Huggins, director of production, the old system was “pretty rudimentary and not very reliable.” The control room, for example, had crowded crew members around a very short desk.

The space now has the video, audio, and graphics gear spread across two rows, with four multi-views from the FOR-A switcher providing monitoring of all sources and outputs at all times. “That was a huge improvement for us,” Sprotberry added. “Before, we had to pick and choose.”

“Fairhaven Church is a great example of how our customers maximize the power and flexibility of our HANABI switchers for live production,” said Adam Daniul, FOR-A director of midwest and south regional sales. “The HVS-2000 helps them manage and monitor graphics and video sources, and allows them to provide unique program feeds simultaneously to multiple outlets. Our switchers are incredibly powerful without being complicated, which is important for churches and other facilities that often rely on volunteer production crews.”

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