In The Market for a Lighting Console?: 10 Models for Churches to Consider
While the cost of an inexpensive console might be where one might initially gravitate, it’s best to recognize each unit’s mix of pros and cons.
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Learn about a half-dozen options that are particularly scalable, beginning with personal computer operability, all the way up to multiuniverse, full-size lighting consoles.
When considering lighting consoles, just because a certain unit might work fabulously at the church down the street, it doesn’t necessarily guarantee that it’s a match for your worship space.
One of the first aspects that cannot be ignored is how well, and how quickly, your staff would be able to learn the intricacies of your newest piece of gear. Without the comfort of knowing whether your staff will quickly understand how to use the console well, they could easily find themselves frustrated trying to get a grasp on how to best use it.
To help them avoid such angst, we recommend that prior to the start of service the staff tests every cue that is programmed into it. By doing that, your staff won’t unexpectedly be thrust into any surprises. And remember to also allot enough time in advance of the service for programming. Such preplanning will go a long way in limiting your stress, as well as those who are tasked in handling the lighting during your services.
While some church lighting designers might aspire to someday own a $44,000 High End Systems Hog 4 console, we here at Worship Tech Decisions recognize that for most churches considering either an upgrade or are looking to buy their first console, their specific budget line for a new unit is nowhere near that stratosphere.
In looking at the bevy of options from all the lighting console models and brands, WTD opted to narrow its focus to 10 models, ones running as low as $199 up to $3,900. Included are units from brands American DJ, Avolites, Behringer, ETC, Jands, Leprecon, Leviton, Lightronics, Pathway and Strand Lighting.
While the cost of an inexpensive console might be where one might initially gravitate, it’s best to recognize each unit’s mix of pros and cons. The great benefit (beyond its low cost) for most low-cost units is their simplicity, which will likely not make them much of a challenge to teach to your staff and volunteers. But that simplicity often also adds up to a console not having all the features you might want, and are instead likely part of a full-featured unit.
Have the goal of selecting the right tool, as will go a long way in being able to do the job well, and doing it much easier. A good place to start is to recognize how many lighting channels and fixtures you currently have at your church, and how many the console will need to control.
Latest ResourceWorship 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.