Ford AV Helps Amazing Facts Ministry Broadcast to National Scale

Published: 2022-08-04

Amazing Facts worldwide ministry is certainly not akin to the house of worship you might have gone to as a child. Indeed, the ministry, which is headquartered in the Granite Bay area outside Sacramento, Calif., is made up of a sprawling campus that includes a local church, radio studio, television studio and a publishing house. Its recent growth necessitated the remodeling of the administration building and construction of a sanctuary with full broadcast studio. 

The new broadcast system includes a 12G TV studio, complete with 5-4K studio camera rigs, studio lighting, video and audio switching, and an audio editing suite. A fiber network was used to tie all buildings and systems together on one high-speed platform. 

The sanctuary AV systems include an LCR Line array speaker system, digital mixing consoles on a digital audio network, LED theatrical lighting and video presentation switching for IMAG for the dvLED screens, and redundant on-air video broadcast control room. 

Scope of Project 

The project started with the church’s planned expansion in the Granite Bay area in California. Ford AV representative, Doug Hill, had formerly been on the ministries production staff. Now as a Ford AV account manager, Doug approached the church to find out how he and Ford could be involved and assist the project. After interviewing several AV integrators, the church ultimately chose the Ford team, starting with a contract to consult and design the technology systems – supplying documentation including power, conduit, space requirements, system line drawings, and more for the architect and design trades to use for their construction documents.  

This contract was done with the intent that Ford would also perform the installation during the “build” portion of the project. The church expressed it chose Ford because its presentation was less about sales and more about partnering with the church to make sure that expectations were met. 

Ford AV’s broadcast and ministry design teams began to develop a scope of work with the church. The church had a construction manager on staff who, along with the ministry President, Doug Bachelor, and media director were the primary contacts that helped Ford to ascertain the churches end desire for the new technology. 

The ministry leadership also stated a requirement that the equipment and systems could be operated by a skilled volunteer, while maintaining high-quality and not compromising the high-quality production expectations that were critical to best support the church’s mission for both TV and Radio as well as podcasts. 

Because the media staff requested the ability to operate in 4K, the team provided flexibility to broadcast from one of two redundant studios located in the sanctuary and the other in the production studio in an adjacent building. The production studio is a full 4K studio for acquisition with tie lines using fiberoptic and control between the sanctuary and production studio. 

The design stage, which included coordination with the church, architect, construction management and general contractor, lasted about 1.5 years. Once the scope of work and materials list was finalized, the “build” contract began, engaging Ford into the onsite installation — along with a Ford project manager, who had common coordination with the general contractor and other trades at the job site. 

Key Challenges 

  1. The church was dissatisfied with the original general contractor, so a new GC was brought in and Ford re-established that relationship and brought the GC up to speed on the design and scope of work. 
  2. The church provided three of their own dvLED displays for the sanctuary, which were integrated into the overall AV system. 
  3. Some equipment was new, and some was owner-furnished (OFE). The OFE had to be incorporated into the system and coordinated so the church didn’t have need with it while it was in use to be integrated into the new video production system. 
  4. COVID-19 led to California shutting down incoming flights that impacted the ability to fly installers, engineers, project management personnel by flying, instead they had to drive. This made each Ford staff person who went to the job site spend days instead of hours to travel to the church job site. 
  5. Ford contracted to supply the low-voltage house lighting and from the time the product was designed and contracted into the system, the manufacturer went out of business and the equipment had to be creatively sourced from any leftover stock around the U.S. 

Doug Hill, account manager, Ford AV says, “Overall, the church loved working with Ford AV. They enjoyed the collaborative process with Ford’s team to develop a good Scope of Work, as well as the partnership developed during the installation process. 

Doug Batchelor, Amazing Facts president and pastor states, “Amazing Facts has been around over 55 years, and it started very small with just radio programs. Now we are on national TV networks across the nation and really across the world and so really, it’s essential for us to have some of the best media technology to produce the best content.” 

Equipment List 

AJA Converters
Apantec splitters, converters
Clearcom headsets
Datapath wall controller
LG display monitors
Sony Bravia
Yamaha speakers, subwoofers, DSP Processor 

To view additional photos of Ford AV’s installation at Amazing Facts, click view slideshow in the upper right hand corner. All photos courtesy of Paul Leach and Michael Gray.

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