25.04.18

Case Study: RiverLife Church, Singapore

AUTHOR: Inavate
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Main sanctuary at RiverLife Church, Singapore with Yamaha Rivage console

Located in Pasir Ris, RiverLife Church was established in 1988 as a central gathering point to worshippers residing in the eastern heartland of Singapore. The church was previously known as Bartley Christian Church (Pasir Ris Centre) before being officially renamed as an independent body in the year 2000.

Despite its small beginnings, RiverLife Church and its members are committed to reaching out and providing support to various group of people both locally and overseas. This includes hospital visitations, support for expectant mothers and youth opportunities. RiverLife church has close to 3,000 worshippers across services on weekends.

Sound has always been an integral part of the weekly church services. Having a console that provides superior sound and the ability to retain the signal integrity is especially important, as it helps to provide an immersive and distraction-free time for the worshipper to engage during the services. A team comprising of the manager of technical and production, Freddy Ng, sound specialist, Jerry Chua and the church’s esteemed committee was specially formed to evaluate the church’s technical requirements and facilitate the selection process for the different consoles.

Since the console plays an important role in the entire sound system in the sanctuary of the RiverLife church, the selection and testing of the different consoles were especially extensive, to ensure that the right console was ultimately chosen for the right job.

The Yamaha Rivage PM10 was able to fulfil the requirements of the services competently. Having the technical capabilities to support a full band set up with a dedicated monitoring system for the musicians through the use of the Dante network and a separate TWINLANe network – an original Yamaha network protocol with redundancy capabilities to support the main system – the Yamaha PM10 is a great complement to the church’s existing technical infrastructure.

The option to implement the use of the Silk preamp, Yamaha’s own developed hybrid microphone preamplifier in collaboration with Rupert Neve, has provided new possibilities for users to enhance any musical repertoire in a mix. Sound specialist Jerry Chua was particularly impressed with the PM10’s ability to process eight plug-ins per channel natively, an engineering feat that the Yamaha team has achieved, that enables users the possibility to engage different permutations of plug-in combinations for specific applications – something very familiar to engineers in a studio setting.

Having a console that has an intuitive interface was particularly important to the team, as volunteers operate most of the services. With the inclusion of the PM10, the console’s user-friendliness has provided these volunteers with a capable canvas for them to mix artistically without being held back technically. The PM10 has individually controllable banks (three sections), and it has allowed the operation to host more than one engineer to control different parameters of audio during a service. With the introduction of live multi-track recording, this feature is an important resource in facilitating sound checks and training.

Having the ability to simulate a sound check in a live setting was a key factor to improve efficiency, as an engineer does not require band members to be on location when dedicated tuning is required. Training using past recorded shows have helped the overall learning experience to become more holistic as the volunteers can return to any specific part of a particular song in order to practice more easily.

In line with the Yamaha perspective of integrating past and future audio systems as one, the PM10 is highly expandable through the use of its HY and MY slots. These expansion slots vary from digital to analog converters, digital to digital bridging and even digital system processing. For instance, in the case of RiverLife Church, several MY8-ADDA were used to interface the console with the church’s existing outboard gears. The RIVAGE PM10 has greatly expanded an avenue of possibilities for RiverLife Church, and with its highly scalable characteristics, the PM10 will act as a cornerstone of the church sound system for many years to come.