Seven years ago, Willow Creek Church, in South Barrington, Ill., one of the largest churches in the U.S. in terms of both membership and facilities, commissioned a new sound reinforcement system to serve its main sanctuary, which has a capacity of more than 7,200.
Until recently, the subwoofers were driven by power amplifiers retained from a previous system. Time took its toll, however, with the amplifiers increasingly plagued by systematic failure, to the point where Matt Satorius, audio system engineer at Willow Creek, began researching options for an upgrade.
“Specifically, we were looking for amplifiers offering increased power efficiency, digital signal processing, and the ability to be controlled and managed over a network,” Satorius explains. The thorough evaluation process eventually led him and the church production team to the Powersoft K Series, which provide power and efficiency from a compact footprint.
They installed two Powersoft K3 amplifiers to power the six Danley Sound Labs TH-115 tapped horn subwoofers that provide dynamic low-frequency support to the sanctuary sound system.
“The efficiency of the Powersoft amplifiers is the ticket,” Satorius states. “We were able to replace the existing six amplifiers with just two Powersoft K3 amplifiers – they’re amazing. The original setup required three 20-amp AC circuits per side, but we’ve been able to cut that by two-thirds with these new amplifiers. That’s efficient.”
A single K3 amplifier per side, specified as being capable of generating more than 5,000 watts is all that is required to drive its respective set of three subwoofers.
In addition, both K3 amplifiers are outfitted with the optional KDSP board that provides a suite of digital signal processing, further enhanced with the inclusion of the optional KAESOP Ethernet/AES3 interface. They team up to offer sound shaping and system management capabilities, remotely controllable via Powersoft Armonía Pro Audio Suite software.
A proprietary algorithm onboard each unit fosters a tight and controlled low end, which is a must for optimized subwoofer performance.
“The amps are rack mounted under the stage with the subwoofers,” concludes Satorius. “Being able to remotely monitor and control them is extremely nice. As an added bonus the install and setup was a breeze – we had them swapped out and working in an afternoon.”