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by Frank Field

The stage at Lake Pointe Church as seen on the church web site. The church recently installed X32 Digital Mixers.

The stage at Lake Pointe Church as seen on the church web site. The church recently installed X32 Digital Mixers.

Mixing sound for busy contemporary Christian churches, such as Lake Pointe Church in suburban Dallas, just got easier thanks to a tool more and more churches are turning to – the BEHRINGER X32 Digital Mixer.

Audio Director Damon Faulk manages the sound for the church’s main campus in Rockwell, Texas, plus three satellite locations and an “Internet Church.” They’re all busy – and when an auditorium needs to switch from one use to another, Faulk says the X32 makes the turnaround fast and seamless.

“When you have a service that’s gotta flip in 15-20 minutes, say from a band to a drama with headsets, unless you have a surface that can flip the channels – it’s not going to happen.” Faulk says the X32 changes all that. He also appreciates the X32s “total recall”, which allows the mixer to store dozens of scenes, making it possible to jump from one mix to another with a single button push.

Having read online comments posted by church colleagues that praised the X32’s sound quality and outstanding workflow, Faulk became an instant convert upon using the console – although he admits some initial skepticism.

“Seeing some feedback online about how good of an economical decision they (the X32s) were, and the ability to have moving faders and good sound quality and good preamps… was worth a second look for us.”

The more he uses the X32, the more Damon discovers about the intuitive design – and the more he comes to love the unparalleled performance. “Every little bit you learn about the X32 makes it that much cooler,” he commented.

Faulk also finds he has more control over how events sound, whether for live performances or on recordings. The X32 has 32 inputs and interfaces with a computer via USB, so the sound can be tweaked for perfection in the sanctuary and still accommodate recording at the same time. “The ability to use the multitrack out of the USB has been a game-changer for us,” Faulk says. “That capability keeps our quality consistent in all of our programming.”

Critical to the success of the church team, which is made up mainly of volunteer board operators, is the X32’s ease-of-use. He is able to teach the basic operations very quickly. “As far as running a show or manning the faders, a short training session is often all it takes to make me comfortable enough to let them mix on their own,” he said.

And more advanced techniques are much simpler to execute than on far more expensive boards. For example, assigning multiple channels to a single fader. “Even something as simple as assigning VCA’s is just so simple on the X32 that my first thought was why can’t our other desk, the one that costs ten times as much, be this easy?”

Damon Faulk has installed four X32s already, with at least two more scheduled to come online in the next six months. He says at this price, it’s possibly within his budget to even keep a spare on-hand – not that he thinks he’ll ever need it!

“For the price point the BEHRINGER X32 is unbeatable,” says Faulk. “It’s a no brainer.”