New North Church improves its communications workflow with Clear-Com’s FreeSpeak II
San Francisco Peninsula’s New North Church recently renewed its communication system with one of the latest Clear-Com’s solutions: FreeSpeak II.
Earlier 2019 Zak Stamps, Technical Director, began conducting research to find a better way to communicate with everyone on the team. Zak tested a few systems that were unable to deal sufficiently with RF interference or to provide intelligible audio in the venue, which is relatively small with an intimate FOH position. “Then we had the chance to try FreeSpeak II, and it was incredible,” says Zak. “Installation and implementation were super easy, the entire system was installed and ready to go in a few hours with no additional support. When we tested it, the team was blown away by the difference – even over loud music we could hear each other clearly!”
New North Church installed a FreeSpeak II digital wireless system consisting of a base station, 4 wired sets, and two wireless beltpacks. “A big concern was wanting to be sure that we could upgrade the system when we needed to,” says Zak. “With FreeSpeak II there is loads of room for future expansion – we can have up to 25 wireless beltpacks on a single base station, which is very important to us as we have plans to expand to a larger venue. The Clear-Com system is a sound investment for the church, and our congregation.”
Additionally, the church has imminent digital expansion plans. “We’re starting a live stream in February, and being able to communicate with the team makes this possible,” says Zak. “We’ll be pushing a live broadcast feed online to enable those who can’t make it to the service to join us online. The wireless nature of FreeSpeak II means we can have a roaming camera with the operator being directed via a headset, which is especially helpful during baptisms and other special events.”
Another key criteria was the ability of the system to integrate with the existing radio equipment. “We have a two-way radio system with 25 radios that our parking and security teams still need to use. Pairing the radios with the FreeSpeak II system was quick and easy thanks to Clear-Com’s technical support team, and they also helped us with a PTT (push to talk) function that was giving us a little trouble at first,” Zak explains. “It’s great to have everything integrated into the intercom – now I can easily talk to the band, the production team and the parking and security teams across one system, without interference and with crystal clear audio.”