Since its early days in 1930 as a small Wednesday night Bible study, the Santa Ana, California Calvary Church has steadily grown its reach and strived to be flexible and meet the needs of the community. Looking to similar growth and flexibility goals with audio inputs and outputs throughout the sanctuary, the church recently installed a quintet of Allen & Heath DX164-W wall mount DX expanders in ACE Backstage Stage Pockets.
“We have an Allen & Heath dLive C3500 Control Surface in our FOH booth with a DM32 MixRack in our equipment room located underneath the stage,” notes Ryan Roehl, Tech Director at Calvary Church. “We were already familiar with what A&H calls their ‘Everything I/O’ collection of audio expanders as we had a roving DX168 on stage for drum inputs and another rack mounted at the booth for last minute I/O needs that pop up from time to time. It was an easy project to grab five more of the DX units and permanently mount them across the stage where we knew we’d really need them. And as always, Ben and the Production Access Group folks provided the next-level support to assist in pulling it all together.”
Available in a variety of sizes and configurations, Allen & Heath DX expanders allow for adding 96kHz remote I/O to a dLive, Avantis, AHM-64 or SQ system. DX units connect via a single Cat5e cable to the dLive Surface, MixRack, compatible mixer, or upstream DX unit via a locking EtherCon port. A second locking EtherCon port is provided for redundant connection to compatible hardware, or for daisy-chaining to a downstream DX for additional remote I/O. A unique auto firmware matching feature automatically keeps all DX units in sync with the rest of the system. The five DX164-W expanders selected by Calvary Church each provide 16 XLR input / 4 XLR output connectivity in a unique wall or floor mount form factor, allowing for an additional 80 inputs and 20 outputs across the venue.
“We also use Dante to send audio around the venue, to and from six production and musical instrument computers, and to manage audio from Shure ULX-D Digital Wireless receivers,” adds Roehl. “With the way we wired up the ACE Backstage mounts, everything is clean and neat and ready to go. Each pocket on stage fits the DX164-W, six power outlets, and eight positions for Neutrik D Series connectors, of which we have one for the DX loop out, two for Dante connections, and two for 3-pin and 5-pin DMX (Digital Multiplex). We’re always growing, so we made sure to include three positions in the box for future expansion. Who knows what we’ll add next.”
“Calvary Church is certainly demonstrating the ‘everything’ part of the Allen & Heath ‘Everything I/O’ ecosystem,” comments Cathi Strader, President, ACE Backstage. “Our 174SLBK Stage Pocket System pairs up nicely with the DX164-W and a duo of 3-gang plates for onstage access to both digital I/O and additional customized connectivity. It is so fun coming across these types of projects—DMX and Dante and power and AoIP in a tidy stage floor package, creativity combined and placed where it is most convenient.”