In the main auditorium, Willow Creek Community's congregants enjoy live musical performances
USA - Audinate's industry leading networking solution Dante helped Willow Creek Community Church, a Chicago metro area house of worship solve the problem of distributing high-quality audio to close to 20,000 congregants each week. Through a high-capacity, low-latency Dante media network, the South Barrington, Illinois interdenominational church has significantly simplified the process of routing, distributing and managing multiple audio channels across four distinct venues on campus.

In the main auditorium, Willow Creek Community's congregants enjoy live musical performances, hear inspirational sermons and witness ceremonies like baptisms and weddings. Incorporating a Dante network ensures high-quality sound can be heard from the main level up to the mezzanine and upper balconies. By installing Dante, Willow Creek Community can leverage a standard IT network and lightweight, low-cost Cat6 cabling throughout this large 7200-seat amphitheatre, thereby vastly reducing the costs and labor associated with building out an audio network.

"The greatest testament to how vital audio is to our operation and worship experience is first and foremost our Dante media networking infrastructure," said Matt Wentz, audio systems engineer for Willow Creek Community Church. "We didn't even look at other networking solutions as I knew immediately that I wanted Dante. No other networking solution provides this much flexibility to route audio from any room to any room. And the fact that so many audio equipment manufacturers have adopted Dante technology opens up a world of possibilities for how we can seamlessly configure our networks."

Willow Creek's main auditorium has a 94ft stage, theatrical lighting and front-of-house mixing via a Yamaha PM1D console, creating a worship experience similar to a concert in a large arena. There are also four other venues at the church, including the Lakeside auditorium, the Activity Centre and the Chapel, each of which is its own Dante-enabled Cat 6 audio island with Yamaha digital audio mixing. Dante efficiently and reliably routes audio between the four venues, which are interconnected via a fiber optic network, centralized Cisco SG-300 fiber switches and an Auvitran Audio Toolbox with seven AxCDante cards.

"With Dante, we can be more creative and flexible in the way we use live audio during our services," said Wentz. "We no longer have to use cumbersome analog patch bays or run heavy cabling throughout our facility. And when we want to change any network configuration, it can all be done simply and automatically with Dante Controller."

(Jim Evans)


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