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Question About Doing Sound From the Stage

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  • Question About Doing Sound From the Stage

    Hey guys, just a quick question for you kind folks:

    Tomorrow night my band is playing in a small club we regularly gig at. My sound man had to cancel last minute, so I am tasked with doing sound with my mammoth sized but still somewhat mediocre system.

    I decided only to run vocals through it, but here is what the system is made up of since I have still not upgraded to the nice PRX system I am lusting after. The mains are a pair of JBL MR 835's. The monitors are a pair of MR805 wedges. I am mixing on a Soundcraft Folio Rack Pac with a Crown Powerbase 2, and an ART effects unit for reverb on the vocals only.

    Anyway, normally when I run this system for vocals only (which honestly it sounds really nice for, it is just a huge dinosaur of a system to carry around) I would use Aux 1 and 2 for the monitors. But since I am only using one amp for this show, AND since I am doing sound from the stage, I am thinking of screwing the monitor mix and just running left to the mains and right to the monitors, in other words since I have no sound man in front and I am the lead singer (with two harmonies) tomorrow this would be a good way to make sure that the vocals we hear are exactly what the FOH hears.

    My question is, is this a good idea? I know the paradigm is to run the monitor mix separately through the Auxes, but I have nobody out front to make sure the harmonies are balanced. So since I am mixing from stage, I would think (and I could be wrong) that this way I can hear the same "balance" of vocal harmonies that the audience is hearing. In addition, since the stage volume is always higher than the house volume with regard to the instruments, and I have a right and left main fader, I can kick up the monitor side of the so-called FOH mix so that the singers can all hear ourselves without making the vocals too loud to the audience.

    Any thoughts on this?

    [COLOR="red"]Edit: Oops, I forgot that I only have one fader for the FOH output not a left and right lol. Oh well, I guess I could use the pan feature of each channel to send more vocals back toward the stage.

  • #2
    If your auxes can do post fade you can switch it to that and get what you're looking for as far as the exact mix levels of the vocals out front. Provided the gain structure of all vocal mics is set up as similar as possible, you set the aux feed for each channel strip the same then use the faders to adjust the mix. No need to get creative with the one amp solution. You just run one side of the amp to mains and the other to monitors.

    Now, as far as actually being able to tell how balanced it is when you typically don't run sound from stage, good luck with that. The good news is, as the lead singer, you generally should be louder in the mix than the harmonies anyway. This should happen naturally as your going to be the loudest voice of the 3. The downside is the harmony guys may not be able to hear themselves well with no discrete mix and you louder in the monitors than them.
    www.nextexitrocks.com

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    • #3
      Thanks, Abzurd!

      Here is something a tad confusing to me: On my mixer, I can switch Aux two to pre and post fade, so say I use Aux to set to post fade. Now what I am finding a little confusing is that I can now control the volume going to the monitors of each strip using both the fader (since it is post fade) AND the aux send on the strip. So can you get a little more in depth with me as to when, during the night, I would push a fader and when I would raise or lower the aux 2 knob? Thanks again!

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      • #4
        Think of the aux send as the faders for the monitor. Set them all the same so all your vocals are "equal strength". Again, this assumes you have your gain structures set similarly so all vocal mics are lighting up the same number of LEDS when you're checking the input levels of the singers. Going to post fader means just that, your channel strip faders will raise and lower the volume of your monitors for that channel. You raise your lead vocal fader to get it louder in the mains and it also gets louder in the monitor. So if you want to keep things relative to how they sound out front then leave the aux send alone and use the faders to adjust the mix. Presumably if they are mixed in the monitors like you want to hear it out front then it should sound reasonably similar out front.

        Just be careful raising the fader too much when you start getting relatively loud as you will increase the chance of feedback due to the monitor getting louder too.
        www.nextexitrocks.com

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        • #5
          I am playing in a basically acoustic styled trio - acoustic guitar - bass - and a drummer on an electronic kit. We do not try to be "loud" - but we do want to have a good "presence". All I can say is that we routinely run just like you are saying - the same Mix "send" to the fronts - and to the monitors - and it works out fine for us. Not perfect - but fine.
          http://www.myspace.com/steverobertband
          Fav. Quote: "Be the change you want to see in the world."

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