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Live Sound

QSC Rocks San Francisco’s The Chapel

QSC’s going to the chapel and getting installed

San Francisco, CA (October 4, 2018)—The Chapel isn’t just any venue. It’s the kind of place that might host Napalm Death or John Zorn on any given night, but moreover, it was a 500-capacity HOW built in 1914 that’s now a must-play in the City by the Bay. Recently, the facility got an audio upgrade, with a new audio system centered around QSC gear.

One of the biggest challenges was the fact that the facility has four distinct spaces—the main venue, a large L-shaped bar with its own system of ten-inch installed speakers, a restaurant called Curio with its own bar, and the patio. On any given night, there might be different music in any of those locations, or the main stage’s live performance might be shared with the entire property.

“The main room is about 35 feet wide by 65-ish feet deep, front to back, and the vaulted ceiling ranges from about 16 feet at the side walls to over 25 feet at the apex,” said Chapel sound engineer Kurt Schlegel. “That’s not physically huge, but acoustically, it’s challenging. We wanted every guest to have a good experience, with the people in the back hearing the band clearly without people in the front getting slammed by excessive volume.”

QSC Debuts CP Series Loudspeakers

As a result, the QSC system includes WideLine8 Series line array loudspeakers with WL212 subwoofers, K Series powered loudspeakers, PowerLight3 Series amplifiers and a Q-Sys audio video and control platform powered by a Core 500i processor.

Adjoining the main Chapel concert room are several satellite areas, including a mezzanine, restaurant and patio. The main concert room features 18 WideLine 8 line array loudspeakers and six WL212 subwoofers, all powered with the PowerLight 3 amplifiers. Additionally, eight monitor mixes feed seven legacy Concert Stage Monitor CSM12 wedges plus one CSM15 for the drummer (all PL3-powered) with numerous K Series powered loudspeakers as stage fills and on the mezzanine. Tuning the entire system to the room is a legacy RAVE 522ua, managing graphic and parametric EQ, compression and limiting and more. In turn, it feeds a legacy, eight-output SC28 crossover. Audio distribution to a plethora of QSC loudspeakers in The Chapel’s other rooms is accomplished by the Q-SYS platform under the control of a Core 500i processor.

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Schlegel noted, “QSC tweaked the internal EQ and other processing so well for the room that I don’t need a graphic EQ at the front-of-house. From the console, I don’t need to EQ vocals or guitars much for them to come through. Drums and bass require a little more, but it’s still a lot lighter than what I’m used to doing. The system also has very good stereo imaging. Even with the arrays being close to some reflective surfaces, I find I can hear my panning moves quite well.”