Q-SYS Delivers Network Audio and Control at York Minster


The Cathedral and Metropolitical Church of Saint Peter in York, England, commonly known as York Minster, is one of the largest of its kind in Northern Europe. As part of an ongoing refurbishment project, the church leaders commissioned a new audio system for installation throughout the Minster. The project was complex in its need for audio clarity with both spoken word and music, while being able to accommodate a wide variety of uses throughout the building. The Q-SYS Ecosystem was up to this task, and was deployed to meet the cathedral’s network audio and control requirements.

The church leaders worked alongside system integrator Wigwam, part of the SSE Audio group, to create the solution. “Q-SYS has become our go-to solution for network audio, video and control installations,” explained Phil Goldsworthy, Engineer at Wigwam. “We’ve built a wealth of knowledge on the Q-SYS Ecosystem having used it in a wide range of projects, from bars and restaurants to large sports stadiums. We’ve also successfully deployed it at Manchester Cathedral, where the requirements were very similar to that of York Minster.”

The epicenter of this system was a Q-SYS Core 510i Integrated Processor, which manages centralized network audio and control processing. Q-SYS features a robust, software-based paging platform that enables zone paging throughout the cathedral, without the need for additional processing hardware. The integrator also took advantage of the comprehensive monitoring capabilities offered by Q-SYS. For example, if a fault occurs, such as a failed amplifier channel, the remote-based support staff will instantly receive an email notification. They can then access the Core remotely (via VPN) and analyze the issue before dispatching an engineer, which helps reduce overall support costs.

Ease of use was another key requirement. The integrator deployed Q-SYS touch screen controllers featuring custom-built user control interfaces (UCI) that allow church staff and volunteers to intuitively route audio inputs (such as microphones and audio tracks), mute/unmute audio zones and access a number of presets that are programmed for configurations that support common services and events held in the church. The system also has EQ settings stored for the ministerial team that can be assigned to any microphone, ensuring optimum audio clarity at all times.

“Q-SYS provides an enormous amount of flexibility, and it really was the perfect choice for this project,” said Phil Goldsworthy. “It handles a lot of processing with minimal hardware and it delivers a fantastic user experience. York Minster is absolutely delighted with their Q-SYS system.”