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  • Who I Am
    I'm a 17 year old sound guy/DJ from LA I first got into audio doing dances at my school. Got my first set up (Radioshack speakers & a cheap amp), in 2005, since then I've had a variety of speakers from Kustom, Peavey, Yamaha, Carvin.

    What I Run Now
    - Carvin Speakers! 4X TRx153N, 4XTRx3218 Subs, 6 TRx12N.

    - Carvin amps! 6X DCM3800L's (4 for subs, 2 for mains) 2X DCM2004L's ( monitors)

    - Behringer DCX 2496 Processor 

    -Yamaha 01V & Seismic Audio 24x8 x 100ft snake

    - Shure/EV mics (8 SM58's, 3 SM57's  CAD Pro-7 mic kit


    Why I Run It
    I've had an interest in audio engineering since I was asked to help plug wires in. Since then I've slowly worked my way up to where I am right now.
    What I Think Of It
    For the price, I have never heard of a better set of speakers. The amps pound, and are very transperent.
    .

    Current PA: Community SLS 915, SLS 920, SLS960, iLF218 Moded for road use, QSC PL236, QSC PL380, Roland M480 VMix System

    Comment


    • Rob_H
      Rob_H commented
      Editing a comment

      Great thread,

      Most of the PA gear below is new to me (some ordered as recently as today) so I will come back and provide the pros and cons later on; I am primarily a bass player but also play guitar and drums, after running rental PA gear for the last several years I decided to invest in my own again. I have a lot of older effects, will be looking forward to selling or trading them off as long as the built in tools in the PS meet my needs.

       

      FOH

      Presonus 24.4.2

      Crest CPX3800 amps x 6 (still interested in those used RMX 2450's though )

      Peavey SP118BX x 2

      Peavey SP218BX x 2

      Peavey SPFHBX x 2

      Peavey SP6BX x 4

      Peavey SP3BX x 2

      Art PR8PRO regulator conditioner x 2

      dbx PA+ x 2

      Ashly XR1001 x-over (back-up)

      Yamaha SPX900 multi effects unit

      Yamaha ProR3 reverb

      Drawmer DL241 compressor

      Ashly SC-68 parametric EQ

      Ashly GQX3102 EQ

       

      EDIT: added a few new items, will be used for the home studio rack but may see odd double duty:

      BBE 482i

      dbx 2231 EQ

      dbx 1231 EQ

      ART Voice Channel

      ART Tube Channel II

      ART Tube VLA II Compressor

      Presonus Studio Channel

      dbx 166SX compressor

      Lexicon MX400 - had to get it, reverb is almost as sweet as a PCM96!

       

      Generally use a Whirlwind snake, Rapco for balanced interconnects and Seismic 4 conductor 12 gauge with Speakon for speakers.

      For monitors I will continue to rent powered until I can convince the other guys to buy their own or until I get pissed off enough and just buy them.

       

      Bass Rig

      Genz Benz GBE1200 x 2

      Ampeg SVT-6PRO (back-up)

      TC Electronics G-System

      Furman PL-8C

      Line 6 Relay G90 wireless

      Peterson Stroborack tuner

      Korg digital rack mount tuner (back-up)

      Ampeg SVT810

      Hartke 410 XL x 2 (one for the drummer and one for back-up)

      I have a ton of basses but am using a 2008 Music Man LE 5 string, a 2010 Custom Shop Fender Jazz and a Ric 4003 the most lately.

       

      Initial thoughts around the SP118BX's was that they would be part of the bass rig for a while, but one thing lead to another and now I am knee deep in gear again....

       

      EDIT #2 - updated with some recent changes - also, adding more subs soon, model tba

      EDIT #3 - added more amps, more SP6BX, went with a couple of FBH subs and a couple of 218BX subs


  • Hi All,

    I am new here and found this subject very interesting and helpful. I am 48 years old, started playing drums at twelve, played in clubs, festivals and parties from late teens through the twenties. I started my own sound business in 1995 with a small home studio and live rig. I have learned much thanks to the community and boards such as this one. I still have a lot to learn. My current rig/rigs consist of equipment I trust and have become dependent on as well as enjoy running. I owe many thanks to Mr. Hellinger at Audiopile who helped me get established back when I was first starting in the sound arena and still helps me today with excellent equipment and advice. I am currently a provider for "B" acts, clubs, theaters and festivals as well as my own music projects. I am also the FOH engineer for a 1500 seat contemporary church with EV line arrays and A&H ILive T112 console.

    Mid/Hi Speakers

    Viking Audio MCW-2's (6) and MCW-1's (4) - Love these speakers, high output, smooth clear projection but heavy as hell. I think they are worth it. Use these for large clubs and outdoors.

    JBL Array Series 4892 (12) & 4894 (2) - These are good speakers but do not have the smooth sound or projection of the Vikings. I use these for clubs and I can move and stack these by myself. A very loud cabinet for the size.

    EAW JF260z (4) - These are used for small clubs, parties and theatre's. Small, compact cabinet that sounds good and will get pretty loud. A great side fill cabinet. Heavy little suckers though.

    Subwoofers

    Viking Audio MCW-18's (4) - Love these subs. These go out regardless of the mid/hi boxes. I have had many compliments from BE's about the "rich sounding subs". A great value.

    Amplifiers

    E&W ES2000 (2) - Used for highs.

    E&W HS3600 (2) - Used for mids.

    QSC PL380 (2) - Used for subs.

    I am very pleased with all of these amplifiers. Lightweight, efficient, run cool and provide plently of power for my applications. The E&W's are a great value and have never let me down.

    FOH

    Roland M-400 Digital console. 48 channels, 16 aux and 8 DCA's in a very small footprint. I like it a lot. Easy to use, sounds good and never had a complaint about it from any "B" act engineers.

    Ramsa SX-1 - A big heavy analog console that sounds excellent. I don't take it out much but I do use it for my studio work. A great sounding console with very nice bottom end. I hope it holds up for a long time.

    Monitors

    Viking Audio M-1 (4)

    JBL SRX 712M (2)

    Shure P4 wireless IEM's (4)

    Shure P4 hardwired IEM's (4)

    Sennheiser e300 IEM's (3)

    All of these work well. I use the IEM's the majority of the time. Some acts will still request wedge's on the stage front and the Vikings or JBL's perform nicely. Plently of volume. Monitors are powered by QSC PLX 2402 (3). Another efficient, lightweight, good sounding amp that I have had no issues with. EQ'S are DBX 2231's (3), very nice eq's for the money.

    Microphones

    I have quite a few to select from but my main "go to" mics are

    Audix OM7 - great feedback rejection but needs a pretty strong vocal

    Sennheiser e945 - good sounding vocal mic

    Sennheiser e906 - guitar cab mic that works very well

    Sennheiser e904 - good rack tom mic, good punch and not too big

    Sennheiser MD421 - I'm old school and love these on floor toms

    Shure Beta 91 - My favorite for kick drums. Just lay it inside the kick on a towel/pillow. Works well with a D112 or D6 in the hole.

    Shure SM57 - Great all around mic for instruments. Still my go to for snare.

    Active DI boxes(12) are all EWI - Again a good product for a good price.

    Processing

    I only take processing if the Ramsa goes out. The processing rack consists of the following:

    2ea       Roland SRV3030 Digital Reverb Processor - Nice sounding reverb that I got for a deal

    2ea.      Lexicon MPX500 Multi Effects Processor - Not too bad, use these for vocal delay

    1ea.      dbx 3231 long throw one third octave stereo equalizer - Very nice EQ that has been discontinued

    6ea.      dbx 1066 Stereo Compressor/Gate - Good solid unit, lots of bells and whistles

    1ea.      dbx 1046 Four Channel Compressor/Gate - A very good unit with less control that the 1066

    1ea.      dbx 166XL Stereo Compressor/Gate - A stripped down 1066 but still a good unit

    1ea.      ART ProGate 8 channel noise gate - A good unit that I got for a deal.

    My regular processing rack equipment consists of

    1ea.      Sony CD-RW Recorder - Very dependable, never had an issue with it.

    1ea.      Aphex Aural Exciter - I insert this on Kick or Bass guitar occasionally, if the instrument is lacking.

    SMAART software running through a Presonus mic pre and Audix TR40 microphone

    All of my mic, patch and speaker cables are EWI as well as all of my racks. Good product for a good price backed by great people!

    I carry my own single phase, 220V power distro with 6ea. 20 amp and 3ea. 50 amp circuits.

    I'll stop now as I don't want to get to long winded. If you would like more info or have questions just ask.

    Chuck

    Comment


    • Audiopile
      Audiopile commented
      Editing a comment

      Chuck:  Mark (Hellinger) here;

      Welcome.

      Hey... I didn't know you were a fellow JF-260 operator.  I have 4ea. 260's that I run over SB-330 subs... love that combo for small shop and parties on the patio.


  • Into the Abyss

    1) Post the gear.

    FOH - Samson DB300A x2

    Additional Power (Behinger Cabinet PA with Yamaha 12's)

    Mixer - Mackie DL1608

    Monitors - Couple of Cheap Nady Wedges which will get replaced at some point in the near future.

     

    2) Post the application.

    We've been together for about a year now, and are starting to get things sorted to where we play, what our set list is, etc.  With a six piece, it's always entertaining.  We play a variety of music from 311 to Taylor Swift.  Good reviews from random strangers, and of course family/friends are heavily biased.  


    3) Offer a brutally honest assessment of the suitability of the tools for the job at hand. Just humble and honest assessments.

    The big thing is (of course) power and lack of low end.  For the places we have taken this out to, it's sounded pretty good.  But we need more low end for a few places we WANT to play (and of course, when we start putting together shows next summer(.  We would like to get it to the point where we are playing outdoors, so I know we will need a massive uplift in order to pull that off.  In order of what I think we need at this time.

    • Subs
    • Better mains
    • Much better monitors

    We have used the Behinger head as a quickie monitor feed, but if we really are doing it all next summer there is going to be a massive investment in the winter.  


    4) Frame your report/critique with a brief description of your experience... so we know where you're coming from.

    I will say I'm really happy with what we have at the moment.  The Mackie DL1608 has done everything I want it to do (and gets rave reviews from the sound guys in the crowd so far).  My goal has been sounds great/reliable/sets up quickly and this setup has been all three.  I can fit everything in the back of my minivan and we can setup (if I get help) within an hour.  I also have ample backup in case things go south.  I run the sound from the stage (yes, too cheap to have our own sound guy) but I'm also pretty fickle since it's my system.  

    I would like to eventually go with JBL's/QSC's and I'm really smitten with the powered mains route, but would be willing to make the jump to a more traditional setup when the time comes.  I've had bad experiences with amps blowing mid show over a decade ago and don't want to go down that route again.

    We are adjusting the set a bit so next time we provide sounds when we play out, I can be out in the audience with a spare iPad and adjust things from around the room during the first couple of songs and then jump back up and keep the set going.  We have a solid four hour set which does a nice job of drawing people out of their seats.

     

    Comment


    • Mains: Rcf Art310

      Mixer: Yamaha MG 124CX

      Monitors:Two  M-Audio GSR 10's and one GSR12.

      DIY monitor with  two 10" and a Eminence ATP tweeter for loud shows.

      Crown XLS1000 amp (monitor)

      Behringer iNuke 6000 amp for subs.

      Four 15" DIY reflex subwoofer boxes loaded with 3015LF Kappalites.

      12 channel snake and many XLR cables from Audiopile. 

      At2020 condenser and four Behringer xm8500 microphones.

      Two  generic mics (one actually sounds OK on kick).

       

      I only run sound two or three times a month and mostly for my wife's folk band so investing in top of the line gear is not necessary or economically feasible.  

      Occasionally I provide sound for weddings and small outdoor parties so I need as much subwoofer as will fit in my Jeep Cherokee. I am doing this mostly as a hobby and am not sure if it will ever become a job, (having a "real" live sound rig and van/trailer to haul it in is probably not gong to happen).   

      I love the RCF speakers and appreciate all the recommendations I got from HC when I was looking to upgrade, I now notice how harsh and unnatural vocals are on lesser products being used by other bands. They can also get loud enough to be heard with bands that have a hard time with controlling stage volume (most) and not give you a migraine, two things the old speakers were incapable of. Combined with the compact size and relatively affordable price they are one of my all time favorite purchases.

       Building speakers has been a hobby of mine for twenty years and although I have built a few PA tops in the past the great value of the RCF's is impossible to replicate with DIY. I still like to build subs though!

      The M-Audio monitors do not have output necessary for loud rock bands but they sound fine at low levels and were purchased on clearance so I can't complain, especially about the weight, which is why I got them for my wife to lug to gigs when here roadie is not around (me).

      The Yamaha mixer has worked fine, is has some effects built in and four channels with compression which is all I have needed so far.  I was looking at the Mixwizz but decided to hold off until a small digital board  is in the budget after using a Studiolive.

      The Crown and Behringer (budget) amps have worked well and the DSP on the iNuke is great for tuning my subwoofer projects.

      The microphones seem to be OK but this is one area I would love to experiment with. Now that I have a snake micing a drumkit on the odd occasion will be easier, I need some DI boxes first and maybe something other than a 7band EQ before I get crazy with mics.  

       

      If good used equipment was available in my area  I might have a much different setup but this  has done the job within the budget that I had.  

       

      The wheel is an extension of the foot

      Comment


      • Miko Man
        Miko Man commented
        Editing a comment
        Here is what I have for a personal rig, for spoken word presentations and political rallies to live musical events:

        FOH: JBL PRX 600 series active speakers.
        612m x 5 (would really like one more)
        615m x 2
        618sxlf x 4

        Monitors:
        PRX 612m/615m (as above)
        M-Audio GSR-12 x 4; self powered, bi-amped. Purchased on closeout (not part of my original plan).

        Mics: Besides the usual SM 58/57/beta 58a collection, I have a few others, most notably an A-T ATM 25LE.

        Wireless: Audio-Technical 3000 series x 2 channels. Handheld & beltpack/lav/headworn.

        Mixers: A&H MixWiz3 16:2; Mackie DFX-12. Enough back-up to limp along if the MixWiz takes a sudden dump.

        Processing: dbx GEQs, dbx comps/gates. I'm weak on effects and processing, but that's less for me to mess up.

        EWI xlr cables and snakes, K&M and Atlas mic stands, K&M sub poles; Ulitimate TS 90 and TS 99BL speaker/lighting stands. EWI DI boxes.

        Lighting: Blizzard FAB5 rbgaw LED x 8. The lighting rig needs movers, but I can provide basic lighting for now.

        Misc production: standing height lecturn; flag sets (U.S., Canada, state); pipe and drape; I can make a a stage area look nice. 350' 12/3 SOOW; 250' 12/3 SJOW; 12/3 quad boxes; etc; plenty for my level of power needs, even if I'm outdoors.

        I live in a small town of 30,000 (50,000 area). The nearest GC is about 300 miles (and two states) away. I'm working at breaking into the business. I have a day job and also tech at the local 2,000 seat civic auditorium. I think I'm above ankle-biter level, but not any competition to pro-level providers in the area. That's OK with me for now. Mark C.

    • A couple years ago I decided to buy a decent PA to use with my cover band for gigs where we had to supply sound.  Thanks to information found on this forum, I think we got it right the first time:


      1) Post the gear.

      Two JBL PRX612m and one PRX618S-XLF; Allen & Heath GL2400 mixer.  Our guitarist brings an Ashley graphic EQ and a dbx compressor (I don't know which model).  We have in-ear monitors, except our guitarist who uses a little EON powered cabinet.

      Vocal mics are an EV N/D257A, two SM58s, and an Audix OM7.  We put SM57s on the guitar amps, and have Sennheiser e604s and SM57s for drums; the drummer has a Beta 52 built into his kick drum.

      2) Post the application.

      80s-alternative cover band, mostly smaller gigs, or larger gigs where high volume is not necessary.

      3) Offer a brutally honest assessment of the suitability of the tools for the job at hand. Just humble and honest assessments.

      We have been deliriously happy with this set-up.  Given the demographic of our target audience, we don't generally have to shake the building or blow the roof off with volume.  For small gigs we often use just the 612s for vocals and tracks supplementing live instruments; often we mix those from the stage on a little Mackie mixer one of the guys has.  For outdoor gigs or larger indoor gigs we bring out the sub and the big mixer.  From what I read on here, I know that that system is probably not considered enough for outdoor gigs, but it's worked great for us and we have not so far had to push it to its limits.


      dec8de live, summer 2013

      4) Frame your report/critique with a brief description of your experience... so we know where you're coming from.

      I'm mainly a player---I've been playing in original and cover bands for close to 30 years.  As I have matured, however, I have come to appreciate the importance of having a really good PA.  If I could do things over again, I would have bought fewer guitars and basses, and invested in quality PA gear sooner.

      Attached Files
      My band: www.dec8de.com

      Comment


      • Pro Sound Guy
        Pro Sound Guy commented
        Editing a comment

        Vermoulian

        Good choice on covers!

        I watched your videos on your site.

        Good band~!

        I love Simple Minds.

        What a great band with a LOT of power


    • Upgraded my light rig (if anyone visits the lighting forum) to a full DMX rig. It was a learning process and I had to buy and sell a few things until I ended up with what I have now.

      11 Blizzard 3NX
      8 Blizzard Fab5
      4 Martin Minimac Profile
      4 Chauvet Intimidator Spot Profile.
      16' of 2" aluminum triangle truss
      Crank stands

      This video probably shows it off as good as anything.
      http://youtu.be/I6aajl89834

      And it all fits into my 5x12 trailer that then fits into my garage. Out of the +30C, out of the -40C

      Trailer load in a nutshell:

      4 - yorkville YX12 monitors
      StudioLive 24.4.2
      Mixer Stand

      http://i1187.photobucket.com/albums/z398/robare99/EDE78AF2-5056-4C79-98F4-BD5B9B323BD5-28343-0000144EF9E63CD8_zps533b6503.jpg

      Light boxes
      2 - YX15's on the right
      Unity15 in front of the sub, with cable box on top
      LS800pSub and power amps on top
      http://i1187.photobucket.com/albums/z398/robare99/D9DEAF84-08B9-4909-AE23-BED94A45BB45-28343-0000144EFEDB564E_zps8b8a9575.jpg

      Unity15, cable box, LS800p sub and power amps on other side
      Light stands
      Light truss
      http://i1187.photobucket.com/albums/z398/robare99/764F15EC-3236-4169-B600-154B76388D66-781-0000008AA822FF6A_zps7fb04c33.jpg

      Buddha boom budda bing. Room for my guitar amp head, cabinet, guitars etc. all in one nice 3D Tetris setup lol.

      Robbie's Rock n Roll Roadshow loaded and ready to roll!

      http://i1187.photobucket.com/albums/z398/robare99/FD78F7D3-9033-41A1-A0D5-30FAFFE74918-27481-00001225FA255CA0_zps8ef34cff.jpg
      PA Unity15's over LS800p's. YX15's, YX12's IPR power, RM32AI

      LightsMartin Minimac Profiles, Chauvet Intimidator Spot Duos, Blizzard 3NX, Fab5, Hotbox

      Comment


      • Art Flood
        Art Flood commented
        Editing a comment

        StratGuy that's a great looking setup. That trailer looks so much bigger from the inside than it does from the outside.

        Cheers


    • Thanks! The size works out great. Since I had to order it new, I was able to choose things like Ramp Door & Threshold plate, the height of the E-Track etc.
      PA Unity15's over LS800p's. YX15's, YX12's IPR power, RM32AI

      LightsMartin Minimac Profiles, Chauvet Intimidator Spot Duos, Blizzard 3NX, Fab5, Hotbox

      Comment


      • Upgradedy mixer setup to a Presonus RM32AI/CS18AI setup. First got the RM32AI and it works really well. I mix bands with the iPad mini all the time. It was a little fiddly when playing with my band so I ended up getting a CS18AI that I mainly use when my band plays. Easier to make a monitor adjustment on the fly.

         
        PA Unity15's over LS800p's. YX15's, YX12's IPR power, RM32AI

        LightsMartin Minimac Profiles, Chauvet Intimidator Spot Duos, Blizzard 3NX, Fab5, Hotbox

        Comment



        • What I run

          FOH

          2x Yamaha DXR15 tops
          2x QSC KW181 subs

          MONITORS

          2x FBT X-Lite 12a
          2x Alto TS110a

          MIXERS

          Allen & Heath QU-PAC
          Allen & Heath ZED 10FX

          MICS

          2x Audio Technica ATM710 vocal condensers
          2x Sennheiser E945
          1x JZ-Microphones HH1
          3x Sennheiser E838
          1x MXLA55 kick mic
          1x AKG D40 instrument mic
          2x Rode NT55 SDC condensers

          DI's

          Orchid Classic DI's

          Application

          I use this setup for a range of different sized events and venues. The smallest jobs that I do are for speech reinforcement for small conferences/wedding speeches where I just use a pair of the Alto TS110a's. The next step up in size is small acoustic acts (vocals, acoustic guitar, keys etc) which I use the FBT X-Lite 12a's for FOH and the Alto TS110a's as monitors. For band work in small venues I just use the DXR15's (with the Alto TS110as and/or FBT Xlite 12a's as monitors) and have very successfully run bass guitar and kick drum through them. Finally, for the largest work I do I add the QSC KW181 subs to the DXR15's and can easily do bands at venues of 250+ people. Again the FBT X-Lite 12a's and Alto TS110a's get used for monitor duties.

          Suitability

          I find the Yamaha DXR15's do a great job for FOH. They have pretty high output and also have decent bass output which copes well with bass guitar and kick drum at moderate volumes. Ideally I would like something that goes a fraction louder as occasionally I have them working practically flat out. However, they've never completely run out yet and they still sound surprisingly good even when being driven hard! The QSC KW181's are fantastic!! They have a serious amount of output and punch and are capable of handling more than I need!! The FBT's handle acoustic gigs with ease and have surprising bass extension. The Alto TS110a's generally work ok but could do with a little more output.

          What I think

          The Yamaha DXR15's have been one of the best buys I've made and are fantastic workhorses! I've owned or borrowed various speakers in the past before I settled with the DXR's. These get a serious amount of use and have been pushed pretty hard and haven't vaguely faltered! They go very loud, have great depth of bass and on the whole are have excellent clarity! They do sound a little scooped and have the classic smiley face to their voicing but not as much as some other speakers that I've used. They also lack a little warmth in the tone and separation between parts on pre-recorded material compared to some of the higher end stuff that I've used but that's not a surprise considering they cost at least a quarter of the price!! Saying that, I prefer them to some of the more expensive products that I've tried! At some point in the future I'd like to upgrade to something with a wooden cabinet but am certainly in no hurry as the DXR15's have not disappointed me yet.
          The QSC KW181's are simply superb!! They go seriously loud, have great punch and have excellent clarity without the wooliness I've experienced with previous subs I've owned. The KW181's are a big step up from anything I've owned in the past and have excellent build quality and feel more professional overall. They are a little heavier than I'd ideally like but don't know of anything within this price bracket that can match their performance at this weight. However, they have castor's so I won't have to carry these very often.
          The FBT X-Lite 12a's are great value for money. These were my personal favourites from quite a few budget ranges that I a/b'd (Alto TS112a, Yamaha DBR12 and EV ZLX12p). They are loud, clear and have great depth of bass for their size and price! I do find they can get a little harsh and the amp is a little noisier than the others I tried but nothing to worry about. They are also the lightest of the bunch and have three handles for easy handling.
          The Alto TS110a's are surprisingly good for the money. They mainly get used for monitors and are plenty loud enough for this purpose on the gigs I do. They have good bass response for a 10" at this price range and the cabinet feels very solid and well made. I do find that they can sound a little boxy and naturally lack the openess and clarity of the more expensive speakers I own but at £149 each they are quite remarkable. Alto has now released a new mkII version of the TS110a called the TS210a which look quite interesting which I may try at some point as they supposedly have higher output, deeper bass and a more open sound along with even lighter weight and more professional appearance!
          The Allen & Heath QU-PAC is possibly the best purchase I've made (along with the DXR15's and KW181's)! I absolutely love this mixer!! The sound, features and build quality are superb! The QU-PAC is very compact and lightweight but a real powerhouse. Allen & Heath have updated the firmware quite a few times since I bought it and have added some new features which are great! The iPad app is a joy to use and is continually growing with each update! The touchscreen interface on the QU-PAC has been extremely well thought out and I would feel confident to mix FOH entirely from this should I need to. I also use the QU-PAC for classical location recordings as it's possible to do multitrack recordings straight to a harddrive and the quality of the preamps and converters have been excellent! My only one critiscism is I wish the QU-PAC had a built in router. For really small intimate acoustic gigs/solo artists at tiny coffee bars I don't really want the clutter of a router along with the CAT5 and power cables.
          The Allen & Heath ZED10fx is a really solid great sounding little mixer that is built like a tank. It is very simple to use and has cleaner pres than any other mixer I've tried at this price point (including the Behringer X-Air digtial mixers!). I use this mixer mainly for rehearsals or dry hire these days and it works a treat for that. I also use it to record into my iPad with Auria Pro and it sounds great! Ideally I'd like a very small digital mixer with hardware controls/touchscreen and built in router like the QSC Touchmix 8 but I've not found anything I'm completely happy with on the market at the moment so will stick with the ZED until something I like gets released.
          Regarding the mics I use, I find them all to be very good. The best value mic that I own is the Sennehiser E838. These went for £45 each new which is a complete bargain as they sound very close to the E935 which is 3-4 times the price! They have the same solid build as the Sennheiser 900 series mics and are my general bread and butter vocal mics. I find these work on a wide range of voices and I use them in situations where I would normally use an SM58. However, I've had better results with the E838 in pretty much every situation. I would like to pick up another couple of E838's as they get used a lot and quite often I'll use these when I have multiple singers that I've not worked before on a gig. They also go for around £30 secondhand which is a complete steal! The Sennheiser E945's are great mics and on some sources can sound great but on others they can sound a little harsh. The JZ HH1 is a very clear mic that sounds a little smoother than the E945 and has more low frequencies rolled off which can sound lovely on some voices. However, the HH1 has noticeably higher handling noise than all my other mics. The Audio Technica ATM710 is extremely clear sounding and picks up very subtle details in vocal performances. It also has very low handling noise and surprisingly high feedback rejection (saying that none of my mics have given me any problems with feedback at all). This mic can sound fantastic on some vocalists but can also sound a little harsh/brittle on others. Ideally I'd like to get a couple of condensers that sound a little smoother in the highs like the Shure Beta 87a. The MXL A55 kick mic is by far my favourite that I've heard. It sounds deep, tight with plenty of attack without sounding overly hyped or 'boingy'! Every drummer that I've used it with has commented on how great it sounds and quite a few have wanted to buy one for themselves. I've also used it in various studio situations and both the engineer an drummer preferred it over the Audix D6 and AKG D112. The AKG D40 is a great multipurpose instrument mic that sounds great on snare, toms and horns. I would like to get a few more of the D40's at some point. Finally the Rode NT55's have been great workhorse SDC's. I use the for miking choirs, acoustic guitars and drum overheads. They are very detailed low noise mics and are well built. I use a pair of Fetheads with them which helps to lower the noise even more! My only critiscism is they can sound slightly metallic and I'm considering getting a pair of Michael Joly's custom capsules for them which sound smoother and richer.

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