North Point Church Adds Two More VENUE Systems to Its Expanding Ministry

North Point

North Point Community Church in Alpharetta, GA, opened its doors in 1995 with a mission to create a welcoming environment that would appeal to non-churchgoers seeking a friendly path. Seventeen years later, North Point Community Church has expanded to become North Point Ministries, with five campuses spread across North central Georgia and beyond.

At its Alpharetta campus, two main auditoriums provide combined seating for over 5,000 faithful at each service. Built just a few years apart to accommodate the church’s rapid growth, North Point’s East and West Auditoriums are each equipped with state-of-the-art audio systems that support regular live performances, as well as North Point Online, an online broadcast of the church’s weekly services. 

Keeping North Point’s audio infrastructure in perfect working order is no small task for the tech-savvy team headed by audio director David Stagl.

“We have a unique setup at North Point Community Church,” Stagl explains. “Our two main auditoriums sit back-to-back and share a single backstage wall. Each stage has a typical rock-n-roll setup—two guitars, bass, drums, keys, and a couple of vocalists. Our weekly musical format is fairly consistent in both auditoriums, so we’ve standardized our audio setups as much as possible. This helps with training and also allows us to share resources.”

North Point

After extensive research—and with a careful eye toward expandability and versatility—North Point’s team concluded that Avid VENUE systems were the best overall choice for the growing church’s diverse audio needs.

“We originally purchased two VENUE D-Show Systems for use at FOH,” Stagl remarks. “We really liked the dramatic sound quality improvement they made in our PA system overall. Since then, we’ve expanded the VENUE lineup at our Alpharetta campus by moving our existing D-Show Systems to run monitors, while adding two new VENUE Profile Systems at FOH.” 

Both North Point auditoriums feature similar audio configurations based around an all-VENUE workflow. A VENUE Profile System sits at FOH and connects to two Stage Racks that host a total of 96 inputs (80 analog and 16 digital channels). Outputs to the PA are handled via AES. The D-Show Systems at the monitor position each connect to two Stage Racks, loaded with 24 analog outputs feeding a mix of hardwired and RF in-ear monitors from Shure and Sennheiser.

Both Profile Systems utilize dual VENUE HDx cards that connect to a Pro Tools|HD system, providing 96 channels of recording and playback in each auditorium. Each monitor console is loaded with a single HDx card connected to a Pro Tools|HD Native system.

With the church in a fairly consistent growth mode and hosting an active schedule of events requiring audio support, Stagl cites ease-of-use as a critical asset that keeps him coming back to VENUE year after year. 

“We made our first investment in VENUE D-Show Systems back in 2006, and we found it really easy to transition our team from analog into the world of digital mixing by training on VENUE. Since then we’ve continued to add VENUE consoles to our lineup. At last count we had 15 systems across our five campuses.”

North Point

Features such as Snapshots and Virtual Soundcheck are also extremely popular at North Point Ministries’ campuses, where resources include a mostly volunteer audio team.

“Virtual Soundcheck literally revolutionized our mixes,” Stagl says. “We record all our rehearsals into Pro Tools and use Virtual Soundcheck to refine the mixes, without requiring the band to play ad nauseam. I then store a snapshot as a starting point for each song in the set, along with its own customized settings for easy recall later.

“Virtual Soundcheck is particularly useful when teaching volunteers. In fact, when we recently replaced our analog monitor consoles with VENUE D-Show Systems, I was able to start training our volunteers by using Virtual Soundcheck with tracks from actual services. Our crew was ready to mix on day one!”

Ultimately it’s the VENUE systems’ ever-expanding feature set that excites Stagl the most.

“I’ve been a power VENUE user for many years, and I’m pleased with how the system continues to evolve. I’m constantly learning something new and that’s a creative freedom that few other consoles can deliver.”