Category Archives: Tech Team

Tech Corner 12

The gap between posts is a reflection on how manic life is at the moment and how much, as a fellowship, we have going on. To give you a flavour;

  • Special ‘one service’ Sundays from the end of Nov all through Christmas, with loads of baptisms.
  • Cantata, was preceded this year with an incident that blew the main front of house speakers.  An electronic problem with a  piece of faulty equipment caused the speakers to shriek so loudly that one of them almost fell off the wall. By the time you read this, hopefully, they will be repaired.  Patrick did a fantastic job putting together the ‘jury-rigged’ system that we have all been using over the Christmas period.
  • We have a long standing gremlin in the hall projector that is proving elusive to fix.
  • The radio frequencies that we currently use for our radio mics are being gradually sold off to mobile phone companies for 5G.  This week we took delivery of the first of many replacements we will have to make over the next few years.
  • The new evening service programme is being planned and prepared for – see here for service details

Add to this church meetings, prayer meetings and training evenings and you will see how much has been done recently.  Please pray for the tech team as we try to support the praise and worship team,   and the church leadership…

Part of the problem is caused by our team running at half strength; which in an ideal world means we are looking for five new tech team trainees.  People willing to watch and learn, coil cables and set things out.  Please contact us if you are interested in shadowing for a few weeks.

Anyway, enough of that!  Here are a couple of phone apps for you to have a look at.

  • AA… thats the roadside breakdown service…  If you are one of their 15M members, try our their new phone app. It can remind you when servicing and insurance are due and has a panic button in case you breakdown
  • Fitbit… for those of us who have to watch our weight, the FB mobile phone app can use the phone’s GPS to track your activity and has a built in food log that you can use even if you haven’t bought one of their watches.

More to follow…..

New Techies?

IMG_0677Our preoccupation up on the balcony, as you will realise if you have been listening to the notices recently, is people, or lack of them. 

We first published this post in May 2015 and since then things have got worse not better ….!

The Need

We need 3…. Having three individuals on for each service allows us to do some training, keeps the stress levels down, and ensures we are prepared and ready to switch on when Rae stands up.  Continue reading New Techies?

Tech Corner 11 ~ Seating

Tech 1This tech corner, is a guide to church seating, and an encouragement to the congregation to get the most out of choosing where you sit in the building.

In the concert world there is a perception that a good sound system gives a uniform sound dispersion pattern; giving the same experience to every ticket holder; every seat the same.

In the sanctuary, the same perceptions do not hold true. Firstly, the service isn’t a performance, it’s an individual taking part in a corporate activity, but having an individual experience with God. Secondly, we are aware of the variations and rather than spending vast amounts of money trying to fix them, we would encourage you to choose where you sit accordingly.

Loudness: the volume is greatest in the middle of the church and quieter on the front row and at the back under the balcony.

Stereo: We mix the sound in stereo, so the best quality of sound is going to be in the middle of the sanctuary.

Deaf loop:  We operate an induction loop for people with hearing aids.  The cabling for this is under the floor about 5 feet out from the wall, so the best signal is in the four seats closest to the wall all around the outside of the sanctuary.

Video screens: At the time of the renovations we moved from a big screen and expensive projector to brighter video screens.  They are smaller, but give a much brighter and higher resolution picture, so if you have a problem seeing the words, move forwards a few rows.Tech 2

In a rapidly growing congregation we are always going to have people with different tastes. We would encourage you to get the most out of each service by sitting  in a seat gives you the best acoustic experience.

Working in the cloud

Tech 1Tech time once again! Today we have a request… As a team we use DropBox a file sharing program to allow multiple members of the tech. and praise team to access files and service schedules etc. There is small amount of free space available when you sign up for DropBox, but to get more you have to pay. One way around this is to sign up your friends to the DropBox service, for which we get an additional free allowance. We are looking for people to try DropBox out, so that we can get the additional space without having to pay a subscription. If this is something you would consider – please speak to us on the tech team. How it works…? We would send you a link to install the program on your own computer. Once you have done this, we get the extra memory allowance in our program. You can use the program to share files with your friend and relatives or simply delete it after a month or two. We would still get the bonus.

 

One of the things we are looking at currently is creating an App for the church, with current material downloadable to your portable device. Is there anyone in the congregation with experience of creating portable apps? Please speak to me if you have – Neil.

 

Tech 2Finally, for those of you with Mac’s, I have found a cool app called Grand perspective. It maps your drive and gives you a pictorial representation of the space used by the junk you have on the disks. Allows you to see where you can save space…!

Neil

Tech Corner 10

Tech 1At the time of writing we are pushed to the line. We should get this into the mag (beginning of March) by an hour or two. Timing is important and sometimes really difficult to get right. When you are sitting at the computer controlling the graphics as the congregational belt their way through the latest praise song, it can be very difficult to get the button push just right. Too early and the congregation loose their thread. Too late and there is an embarrassing pause as three people carry on from memory and the remainder wait. Sitting singing along, praising God, and I just have to push that button, now… and now…. and {what’s the next song?} {how many verses are there?} and where are we … now… sorry! It’s the hardest job in the tech team. Later this month, we are planning to have a tech afternoon. During the afternoon we will leave all our kit set up and invite / encourage members of the congregation to come in and see what we do. We can give you a chance to mix the band, from a multi-track recording, or set up the videos for a service. Come and see what we do – watch the notices and website for a date. Speaking of which, we are sitting at just under 700 hits a month. We are attempting to keep the pages up to date and adding material as necessary. Please use the site, and link to items of interest – it will keep us on the search pages. Also there is a visitors book for Tech 2guests to sign into and comment on – please encourage any visitors to leave comments. This month’s hot tips – For the techies an Iphone app – JL Audio, SPL meter – measure sound live and analyse the frequencies with an RTA. For the non-techies – how about an online egg timer? – http://e.ggtimer.com/

Date for the diary: Inspiration week – last week in March – Elgin Youth Café – events and inspirational speakers for all ages.

Neil & the team…831363

Tech Corner – 9

Tech 1At the time of writing we are approaching the New Year. By the time you read this we will be well into January and looking at the year to come. Since the refurbishment of the sanctuary we have been getting used to the new systems. We have a good system, but as always we are still struggling for personnel. As a team we could do with four or five new trainees to build the team skill base. In the next month we will be drawing up the rota for the next six months so now is a great time to jump in and join the team. We try to have three people on duty at any one time so we have space to do some training and cover the audio and visuals. At any one time, one of the team is mixing the audio; making sure that you can hear the words and switching microphones on and off as necessary. The second is running the graphics screens managing the words, videos and the video feeds to the hall and vestibule. The third techy, when we have one is able to run the camera, and assist the others with support and training.   When we only have two, the shift is much more stressful and there is less opportunity to deliver training.

This month, we are caught up in a wave of new technology. We (as a family) have given up on Microsoft Windows 8 and moved to Mac. Windows 9 has been scrapped, and Windows 10 is not due out until the end of the year. There is a wealth of new software to play with for the Mac OsX not least of all is Qlab a program that lines up and plays video and music clips. We are also exploring software to undertake multi-track recording of special services. We even have a new Macbook spare if anyone is looking for one?!!

This month’s hot tips are websites. Firstly, PC lessons online is a free source of how-to videos covering many of the common issues with using PC or Apple technology, including iphones and ipads. Check-out www.pcclasses.com for any number of useful videos. So much easier than reading the manual – when there is one! Secondly, in the same vein, is YouTube, believe it or not. www.youtube.comTech 2 as I am sure I have mentioned before, contains so much more than just pranks and pop videos. There are video tutorials {of various qualities} on just about every subject from how to tie knots and bake cakes to how to apply compression and gating to a drum kit. It is a great resource if you focus your search carefully and you know what you want to learn.

Neil & the team…

Tech corner – 8

Tech 1

 

At the time of writing this it’s July; difficult to believe that it was February that we last posted a tech corner.   A few weeks ago we spoke about the website in the morning service. I thought it would be good to recap some of the items from that morning.

There are, in essence, two groups of people that use the website, the church attendees and the visitors. We try to use the website to communicate information to those that stumble across us, either because they were googling Lossie, or looking for a church in the area. This can be information about service times, where we meet, etc. or in more depth, it could be about what we believe, or our vision for the church in Lossiemouth. In both cases we hope that the website would attract individuals, and give the impression that LBC is a place where they would be welcome and find friendship. In order for this to happen, they need to be able to find us in the first instance. – see box The verb ‘to google’       Accessing the Internet; there are only a couple of ways to find information. One way is to type in the exact code for the page (called a URL) e.g. www.lossiebaptist.org or one of the search engines will give you a range of pages that represent whichever search words you type in.. There are a number of search engines, of which the most well-known is Google. Hence typing into Google is Googling. The problem with search engines is the number of results they produce. A google search for ‘Lossie’ takes just over a quarter of a second to produce 793,000 results. LBC comes up 4th….! Out of 793,000 i.e on the first page

The second group are our own attendees. There are two objectives to consider here. The way the search engines work is a closely guarded secret, but there are some known parameters. Broadly speaking, the more a page is used and the more connections/links it has, the more it will rise up the search engines rankings. Our aim is to have it on the front page; top ten… Consequently, if we have a good site that the congregation use regularly, then we will be and remain on the front page of the search engines, making us accessible to the visiting public.

The lossiebaptist.org web page has a wide range of features (33 pages) many of which may be of interest to you. Please consider helping with the website by doing some or all of the following.

  • If you haven’t had a look yet? please do.
  • Use the features on a regular basis (daily bible readings, weather forecast, tide times, EA news, Tech 2church diary)
  • Use the links on each page to make recommendations (and hence links) on your social media pages. Tweet to hashtag #lossiebc, ‘like’ on Facebook, or just send email recommendations to friends
  • Encourage visitors to the church to sign our visitors book online
  • If you are an organisation leader – please check your page and give me updates at least every 6 months or so – let’s not get stale!   Men’s fellowship – have you read your page?
  • Finally, give me suggestions about what you would like on the site…

Neil & the team…