Case Study: Black River Barn

The Space

Black River Barn in South Haven, MI is an 11,000 square foot wedding venue and corporate event space. This picturesque and conveniently-located venue features a 5,400 square foot main hall, vaulted ceilings with exposed beams and chandeliers, space for indoor and outdoor ceremonies, private bride and groom suites, indoor and outdoor fire pits, and a caterer’s kitchen.

The Challenge

Black River Barn tasked D16 with providing upscale, state-of-the-art technical amenities and an easy-to-use Audio/Video/Lighting (AVL) system to smoothly integrate with their spaces. Their space needed a robust network, a new speaker system, projectors, a security system with cameras, secure Wi-Fi, and connected video throughout – all with easy-to-use controls to provide their guests with modern amenities in a stunning rustic venue.

The Solution

The approach was to make the space’s new technology easy to use and flexible enough to suit the space’s multiple uses. To accomplish this, our team devised the idea of an all-digital network system. Every input to the system immediately goes on the AVL network. This provides unlimited flexibility as to where those inputs, whether audio or video, can be routed in the facility.

At the heart of this system is CORE by QSC (Q-SYS Core). The Q-SYS Core is where all the AVL routing takes place. To simplify the routing and control we integrated a 7” fixed touchscreen and several iPads. The Q-SYS Control allows for routing of and complete control over all AVL equipment (including indoor and outdoor firepits!). In other words, it acts as the input, output, and controller for all systems linked to it.

The beauty of the CORE is that it allows each interface (the touchscreen and iPads) and each function to be password protected. This enables management to grant access to very specific areas without granting access to the entire space’s AVL. Staff and event coordinators now have the control necessary to smoothly run events without accessing other main controls and settings.


L’Acoustics is known for their footprint in the touring market, stadium sound, house of worship and high end retail. Which is why we chose them to provide premium sound in the main hall and other main event spaces at Black River Barn. We installed high quality QSC ceiling speakers throughout the rest of the facility (bathrooms, entryways, common areas, etc.) to keep guests connected to the event.

QSC Attero Tech plates feed audio into the system. Any audio input is immediately converted to digital audio, which goes out via a network connection, and is sent back to the Q-SYS Core for routing and processing. As a result, couples can now play music from their own device or choose from the venue’s library while getting ready for their big day in the private bride and groom suites. They can even control the dish receiver to select what channel they want displayed on the TV. Now no one has to miss the big game on their wedding day!


Visionary Solutions handles all video transport. All encoded video is put on the AVL network at the input plate. Each fixed TV has a Visionary Solutions decoder that plugs into the TV. Input or output (audio and/or video) can be plugged into network jacks on the AVL network. To maintain an upscale experience for guests, we installed Epson projectors to provide HD video and Phillips Professional Series TV’s throughout the facility.

To protect and secure the property, as well as provide public Wi-Fi, we installed a complete Ubiquiti network that provides network security, security cameras, and devices to monitor the property.

The Net Result

With the Q-SYS CORE at the heart of the system, and a robust network, Black River Barn now provides their guests with a beautiful, seamless, hassle-free experiences to last a lifetime!

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