Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Entry for Blog's sake

I am not one to just post just to say I did it. I try to make sure that when I publish a post that it means something. So...

I am typing this in the back of a lecture room at Cleveland Clinic Foundation. I am doing the AV and projection for one of the sub-meetings of the World Congress of Endo-Urology. The entire meeting consists of more than 1500 people from around the world. The have all come here for a medical education seminar that will encompass over 10 days, 15+ live surgeries broadcast from multiple locations on our 20+ block facility campus.

I have no idea what the speakers are saying because this is a meeting of Brazilian Urologists. I am expected to resolve their many issues with AV although we can barely communicate in English with on another.
These are the types of events that are almost everyday for me since beginning to work part time at "CCF" about 3 years ago. I am very pleased with all the knowledge that working here has afforded me. Not many people can say that they establish 2 way satellite communications with multiple locations around the world almost on a daily basis. All of this has shown me that the average church is barely touching the surface of possibilities with media and communications.

Wouldn't it be wonderful to coordinate with a missionary in China to live webcast a 2 way meeting?? I personally know that we in America do not understand the plight of those in other countries. I would love to facilitate a way for those that work in the mission field abroad to share their experiences with us. What about ministry classes? I know everyone doesn't have access to facilities to learn face to face. The web is being used but I wonder how much more it could be?

As these Brazilian delegates speak to me in the universal language of "AV", I am awed at what God has put at our disposal. I challenge us all to rise to the occasion and think outside the box to provide new ways to spread the Gospel to the world(wide web)!!

BTW check out my web page for info on my next Sound Doctrine Series Event

Friday, August 04, 2006

DVD in Production!

That's right! I have begun pre-production on an instructional DVD!
I have been planning on doing this for a while, but the response I have had from my training sessions has convinced me to push ahead. I am currently restructuring my schedule to give more time to Joint Heir and my vision for the company.
There is a definite ministry need in this area. It is not just about turning knobs and setting levels. There is a need for spiritual sensitivity while operating sound in a sanctuary situation. Faith comes by hearing, and the purpose of the audio and media ministry is to ensure that the message is heard and received.
I am currently involved in helping several ministries to focus their media departments to fully support and enforce the vision of the individual churches. I have developed a plan for them that basically puts the vision into concrete terms with specific goals and timelines for attaining them. I hope to expand on this concept in the future.
In the meantime, be on the lookout for my DVD. I hope to have much of it done before the next Sound Doctrine Seminar Series event on September 9th, 2006. If things work out ,the DVD will be available in November of this year.

BTW I have also been approached to appear in a magazine in the near future also. Things are looking up for Joint Heir Media Group!!

Saturday, July 22, 2006


I will be holding another Sound Doctrine Seminar Event!!
This one will take place in Lorain, OH at Faith Ministries Christian Center.The dates have not been finalized yet but it will be in the next 4-6 weeks!

For those that were unable to attend the session at Anointed gates in Cleveland, this is an opportunity to not only attend the regular seminar, but I am going to hold a special "Intro to MultiMedia Session" that evening!
The July 15th session went very well and all the attendees expressed how happy they were that they came. Dave Kennedy from Guitar Center Cleveland brought out some cool gear for us to use for the hands on sessions. As a matter of fact, the hands on time went so well that we restructured the afternoon lectures so that the attendees got even MORE hands on time.

If you were not able to attend the previous session, log on to my website and pre-register for this one! If you provide me with more info about YOUR schedule I may even be able to arrange the date so that more people can attend.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Post Seminar Update

The Sound Doctrine Seminar Series Event was a great success!
For those that weren't aware, Guitar Center Cleveland decided to co-sponsor the event with me! Dave Kennedy worked out all the details and got them to officially step in and help out! Big thanks!!

I arrived early on Saturday morning and made sure everything was in place. Guests came in right on time and we had a few moments to hang out and talk before the official start. There were many several churches and denominations present. I was pleased to find out that my online registration/payment process had been succesful for many in the group.

The morning session flew by quickly and a lot of information was exchanged.
After completing a good portion of "Flow with Me: The Basics of Sound and Sound Systems", we took a break before the hands on session. The group made it clear that they learned a lot when I inquired at the morning break.

Dave Kennedy from Guitar Center brought 3 hands on stations that had EQ, compression and gating for the attendees to work on during our breakout session. He did a great job of working with each person individually. While he had a few, I was also taking time to address questions from the remainder of the group. The attendees let me know that this was the best part of the day, so as a result I decided to re-work the afternoon to be more hands on. Instead of just talking about best practices we actually did them. Thanks to the Anointed Gates musicians, we had a live band to work with. We took the time to examine the mic'ing on the drums and were able to make a HUGE difference in the sounds! We corrected improper mic techniques and discussed what types of mics should be used as well as their placement. We even did some trouble shooting in a "real world" situation!

The turn out was good and all that attended expressed how much the fellowship and information had blessed them. I have a video and audio recording of the first half of the event, since I redid the afternoon session I haven't reviewed the footage yet but I hope to make it into my first video podcast!

The next Seminar will be held soon! Possibly as early as the last week in August, late as the end of September.

Until then remember It's about Sound, Not Doctrine!
Joint Heir Website

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

The time is getting near!!

The seminar is coming together! I have just hooked up with a local music store (can't name them for legal/ corporate reasons) that is going to supply some great gear for all the attendees to get HANDS ON training!!

For those that haven't checked out my web page please go to the Joint Heir Media Group website and get more info on the seminar !

You can also take a look at THIS flier for more info.
I will have a new podcast posted tomorrow night! Make sure you subscribe to it HERE!!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Live Seminar Date!!

The date for the seminar has been confirmed for July 15th, 2006. The location is Anointed Gates Church (800 East 152nd Street)in Cleveland, Ohio. The seminar will begin at 9AM and end at 5PM.
There will be continental breakfast and also a lunch. There will be printed teaching materials and each attendee will receive a copy of thePowerpoint presentations from the seminar. The fee for the whole day will be $59. I am going to offer and early registration discount of $49. DVDs will of the seminar will be available for a fee. I am accepting paypal payments, so if you would like to register now, just send your payment to, also email me at the same address!

I hope to see you at the seminar!

Saturday, June 10, 2006


For those of you that have been waiting, I am happy to announce that I will be doing a LIVE Sound Doctrine Seminar in JULY!!

I am currently getting all of the logistics together, so there is no definite date yet. I have just about worked out the venue and it will be here in Cleveland, Ohio. The perspective church is just off of I-90 and has a good system to showcase the essentials.
Once I have set the date, I will make sure I post here and send an email to those of you that have contacted me!

Until then remember, Faith comes by hearing!!

Friday, March 24, 2006

Flow with Me: The Basics of Sound and Sound Systems Part 1

Flow with Me: The Basics of Sound and Sound Systems

What is Sound??

Sound is acoustical energy that is created by vibrations in a medium (substance), and they travel in waves or rays. Without movement or vibrations, there is no sound! That’s why it is possible to hear underwater. In fact you can hear through cement if the vibrations are strong enough. We hear sound through the movement of the atmosphere or air. Sound moves at about 1,130 feet per second. Light moves at about 186,000 miles per second. That’s why you see lightning long before you hear it!

Here are a few things we need to know about sound so we can understand each other better.

Tech Terms

Sound waves have both frequency and amplitude that are measured in what we call Hertz.(or cycles per second)

Volume or Sound Pressure Levels or SPLs are measured in dB

We will talk more about sound waves later in the seminar. Right now we will talk about how sound systems work on an elementary level.

Simply, a sound system does 3 things:

1. It changes acoustic energy into electrical energy (microphones, DI boxes)
2. It manipulates the electrical energy (mixers, EQ, compressors, amplifiers).
3. It changes electrical energy back into acoustic energy (speakers, headphones etc.)

The different pieces of equipment that handle these tasks vary. Let’s talk about them.

Input Devices

Microphones convert acoustical energy into electrical energy.
All microphones do the same thing but in different ways.

1. Dynamic- converts to electrical energy by using magnets and a coil. (SM58)

2. Condenser- converts to electrical energy by using two externally charged plates. (C414, phantom power)

3. Electret- converts to electrical energy by using two permanently charged plates

4. Ribbon- converts to electrical energy by using magnets and a metal ribbon

5. Wireless- can be any of the above, but add a transmitter and receiver into the picture. We’ll talk about them in more detail later.

Electronic instruments (e.g. keyboards and electric guitars), CD and tape players, etc all generate electrical energy on their own. They output line level signals which are higher in signal strength than microphone level. In order to use them you may need a Direct Box which bumps the signal level down .

Signal Processors

There are many devices grouped into this category because they all have one thing in common. They all can alter the signals that go through them. Here are a few of the most common pieces of equipment:

1.Mixers- (from 4-8 channels up to 64-96 channels) ** I include mixers in
this category, most other people don’t. I will explain later**

2.Equalizers- (graphic and parametric)


4.Multi Effects like reverb, chorus etc...

5.Amplifiers( I include amps here because they in fact boost the signal level in oder to drive the speakers they are attached to. Many newer amps have digital processing built into them.)

All of these devices can be either analog or digital.

Output Devices

I can only think of one type of output device, but there are many different incarnations:

Speakers change electrical energy back into acoustical energy. Headphones, in ear monitors etc. are all forms of speakers. More on these in a second.

What is Signal Flow???

Signal flow is the way that the electrical signals move through your sound equipment.
I like to use water as a symbolism for sound. Imagine a system of water pipes. Our audio/electrical signal is the water flowing through them. The water can flow through small thin pipes, or big pipes. It can flow into tanks, ponds, etc. You can add colors to it to change the way it appears and then you can make it flow out into a glass. All these things can be though of as manipulating the water/signal.

Next post will get more detailed! Tell me if this info was helpful to you!!

Remember "Faith comes by hearing!"

Tuesday, March 21, 2006


Welcome to the Sound Doctrine Seminar blog!!

My name is Steve Croom. I am an audio engineer from Cleveland, Ohio. I have been in the business for over 15 years and have gotten a lot of experience in that time. I will post my resume for you to check out at a later time). The goal of this blog (and future podcasts) is for me to share my knowledge of audio with you. Although my target audience is the "church sound volunteer", I am sure that the information I will share will help just about anyone who is starting out in the field of live sound or studio recording.

I also offer training seminars periodically in the Cleveland area, and hopefully other cities soon. If you would like more information, please feel free to email me at or I would be glad to assist you if I can.

My next blog entry will be entitled "Flow with Me!". I will discuss some of the basics of sound and sound systems.

Stay "tuned" for more!!