It's Too Loud
Everything in life, including audio, requires balance. These theories, or opinions, must be adapted to your specific needs. What decibel level “Listening Level” and “Participation Level” is will vary from church to church and meeting to meeting. They are just an approach to find what works best for you and those listening. I believe that a soundman needs to be spiritually in tune with what is going on as well. The Holy Spirit will guide you and give you intuition. I like what pastor Dwight has to say about this as well ...
“ . . . if the (soundman) is not ready spiritually, the people will hear the music coming from the sound system with a lack of “anointing”. How can this be? I have found in my experience that when my soundman is ready spiritually, that he becomes a worshipper and wants others to experience what he is experiencing and will do everything that he can to see that they do from his perspective and advantage. He will keep and “eagle eye” on the praise leader or music director and watch him for directions and instructions while at the same time he observant to the congregation and how they are receiving the sound. If they seem lackluster and on the perimeter of worship, he might sweeten or fatten the sound or even increase the gain. Are you trying to “work up” something? No, I’m wanting the listener, in this case the worshipper, to not have to work at straining to listen and make it easier on him to enjoy the worship experience. Experience has shown that when sound technicians do this then people get so involved into worship that they couldn’t care less about how “loud” the sound was. Why? Because they were hearing it through the “anointing.” They were being fed sound through an anointed and praying sound technician.”
Keep in mind we don’t want to hurt people. if you are getting repeated complaints by more than one or two people you may want to pull it back a bit. If it’s just people complaining for the sake of complaining then they will eventually get over it and hopefully enter in to worship. Watch your congregation, their participation level will tell you a lot.