Riedel Communications for North Point Ministries

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Riedel Communications today announced that North Point Ministries (NPM), based in Alpharetta, Georgia, has deployed an Artist intercom system, using SmartPanels and Bolero wireless beltpacks, alongside a hybrid TDM/IP MediorNet signal distribution system to enable reliable, flexible communications and A/V signal processing and transport - with video frame sync and frame delay - across multiple campuses. The Riedel solution has enabled NPM to connect its eight campuses across the metro Atlanta area to support both independent and combined services, using both TDM over fiber and IP (SMPTE ST 2110).

“While our intercom upgrade with Riedel systems had a significant and positive impact on the many people involved in services and events, MediorNet really allowed us to pull our campuses together on a single connected system,” said Matthew Drury, Production Systems Engineer at North Point Ministries. “As a routing solution, MediorNet TDM proved to be the most flexible and cost-effective per-channel solution for interfacing video signals with a large number of audio sources in a single venue, while being able to connect multiple venues within a single campus. Moreover, it provided the processing capabilities we needed to align multiple signals at each site to the same message.”

Since its founding in 1995, NPM has grown into a multisite house of worship with eight campuses separated by 20 to 40 miles. Two main services take place every Sunday at all eight campuses, in addition to unique events for preschool, elementary school, middle school, and high school students that meet simultaneously, as well as other special events. While NPM employs about 30 production staff members, Sunday services require hundreds of people - mostly volunteers - to work across all locations. Clear communications using a flexible solution are a must.

The Riedel intercom system, which includes four Artist frames spread across three campuses, 26 2300 Series SmartPanels, six 1200 Series SmartPanels, 56 Bolero wireless beltpacks, 11 antennas, and a Performer digital partyline, replaces an older analog system, delivering an immediate improvement in audio quality. Riedel ConnectIP VoIP interfaces connect the remaining campuses back to the central Artist frame. The solution gives users precise control over who they are talking to and allows them to reach anyone on the production team, working anywhere. During the pandemic, these systems allowed NPM to hold outdoor services and events, continuing to provide connection and community for its congregation. By simply bringing a network switch outside, engineers were able to expand the installed intercom system to a temporary outdoor venue.

The Riedel MediorNet system, which incorporates processing such as audio embedding and de-embedding, frame sync, frame delay, and multiviewing, serves as the main bridge between audio and video systems at each campus. Audio and video are distributed between campuses over dark fiber on a SMPTE ST 2110 routing network. In order to manage this network, the NPM engineering team converted three control rooms to sit natively in that SMPTE ST 2110 environment.

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Eight FusioN IP converters at the edge convert IP signals to/from SDI and HDMI, enabling easy access to sources and displays. Twenty-one MuoNs inside a VirtU 32 frame, and other COTS switches, handle other signal conversion and processing, including the up/down/cross-conversion of HD and UHD. MicroN intelligent signal interfaces support MADI for easy audio channel management, and critically for NPM, they facilitate the delay and frame sync needed to keep signals timed in unison across campuses during concurrent services and events. With this solution, NPM can effectively connect, process, and synchronize the services across multiple sites.

“North Point is a savvy adopter of new technologies, and it’s great partnering with a customer so attuned to our product offering and how our solutions can deliver just the right functionality for them,” said Dave Caulwell, Regional Sales Director, East, Riedel Communications. “It’s clear they believe in the quality of the product, and with the installation now in place, North Point does indeed have a robust, reliable, and scalable intercom and signal distribution that can grow right along with the ministry and its membership.”