Chicago, IL (March 13, 2012)—St. John Cantius in Chicago recently had a Renkus-Heinz Iconyx IC16-R system installed as part of an ongoing restoration of the facility.
Located in the heart of Chicago’s downtown, St. John Cantius is one of the city’s oldest Roman Catholic churches, with roots that date back to the influx of Polish immigrants in the 19th century. But the church’s parish, which once numbered in the tens of thousands, has waned over the years, and when Reverend Frank Phillips was appointed pastor in 1988, he found a church in neglect and extreme disrepair.
Over the ensuing years, Rev. Phillips has led community efforts to renovate the church and restore it to its former glory. Recently the church replaced an aging, ineffective sound system dating back many decades, installing an Iconyx IC16-R digitally steerable array system from Renkus-Heinz.
“Like many older sanctuaries, this one was built to enhance the sound of organ and choir,” says Erik Saari of Wheaton, IL-based Sound Planning Associates. “And as with most classic architecture, aesthetics was a concern—we were not at liberty to install a large, obtrusive system, so the Iconyx’s low profile was definitely an asset.”
Although the new system was intended primarily for speech reinforcement, it inadvertently had other benefits. “I was able to put in more of the low end frequencies and it didn’t disrupt the acoustics of the space,” says Saari. “It really added some nice warmth, especially since some of the priests there have really young voices. It’s now intelligible and also a little bit warmer sounding.”
“I’ve heard nothing but rave reviews from everybody who has been going there for many, many years,” Saari reports. “It definitely sounds a lot better.”