Located in Genk, Yunus Emre Camii is the largest Turkish mosque in Belgium. The industrial city of Genk is cosmopolitan, with large Turkish, Italian and Greek communities, and up to 1000 people attend the mosque for prayers each Friday. It has also become a popular tourist attraction for visitors of all faiths.
Since the building was constructed, the original sound system had never served its purpose. The sound system was plagued by poor intelligibility and reliability while the mics constantly picked up and transmitted echoes and noise. To resolve this, Yunus Emre asked several companies to quote for a new system and the project for design and installation was awarded to Hifi Center Herteleer. Kristof Broux of Hifi Center Herteleer explained, “The budget was tight and we were the most expensive, so to convince them of our ability to deliver the best audio solution in such a large and acoustically difficult building we arranged a demonstration of the loudspeakers and microphones on site.”
Broux, who designed the system himself, continued, “The entire floor of the mosque is covered with thick woolen carpet, so floor reflections are reduced but the domed ceiling creates a tremendous echo, far greater than I’ve heard in any church before. The solution was to use loudspeakers that could cover such a large area, but with such tightly controlled vertical dispersion that no sound was directed into the dome. We chose Community’s ENTASYS, as it met these parameters perfectly, and is well proven for its excellent intelligibility.”
Community loudspeakers are used throughout the venue. Two ENTASYS full-range column line-array systems provide the sound for the mosque’s main area, with one pair of C SERIES CS4s providing delay fill at the back. Four I/O5 loudspeakers cover the area for women only, also located at the back of the mosque, and four all-weather R.25 loudspeakers are used in the minaret, providing 360-degree coverage outside for the call to prayers.
In addition to the Community loudspeakers, Broux’s other key choice for clarity and system performance was Clockaudio. Nine Clock-Audio mics connect to a Behringer mixer, with J B Systems amplifiers powering the internal loudspeakers and a larger Crown amplifier powering the R.25s in the minaret. DSP is handled by a dbx DriveRack PA2 loudspeaker management system.
The system was installed by Hifi Center Herteleer’s own engineers and Broux personally. He concludes, “The new system has transformed the sound quality in the mosque. Whether the imam is praying softly, or singing out loud, the intelligibility and coverage throughout is simply superb.”