Effects - Switching to "IEMs" - What to Expect?

Discussion in 'Effects, Pedals, Strings & Things' started by almesy, Aug 27, 2014.

  1. markjsmith

    markjsmith Member

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    I don't use them. I sing without them all the time, I don't play super loud onstage so it's not really an issue.

    You know how a sound man will sometimes get feedback in the monitors, try that with IEMs. I didn't think that feedback was even possible in those things, but yes it is! It's bad enough having a sound guy fry your hearing for the night (esp. high end) while getting levels in wedge monitors. Try getting blasted while wearing in ears by the super inexperienced guys doing sound at church. I had tinnitus for almost 6 months! Not to mention this guy fried 2 pairs of VERY expensive custom in ears for guys in the band. I'll never wear them again! Too dangerous!

    Not to mention they never seem to stay in my ears!
     
  2. afterosmosis

    afterosmosis Member

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    We have two "ambient" mics at the front of our stage pointing out into the room for this very reason. We can mix them in to keep the IEM mix from feeling too dry.
     
  3. dpgreek

    dpgreek Supporting Member

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    IEMs are a godsend. It takes a little getting used to. I'm a drummer by trade and used to never even get a damn floor wedge. When I did it was great, but still killing my ears because of all the dbs and spl from cymbals and stuff. Now I can hear everything, hear my self sing when I do... and when I play guitar....with creative use of ambient stage mics and tweaking, you can get it perfect.
     
  4. GuitarToma

    GuitarToma Silver Supporting Member

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    I grew up with floor monitors and started attending a church that uses IEM's about ten years ago. I was nervous about them at first thinking for sure that I wouldn't be able to hear anything correctly and would end up depending on the house mix instead of using the IEM.
    I was instantly converted and honestly blown away by how great they were. If you're getting a boxy sound then your mix isn't right or you need better quality earbuds. I absolutely love the clarity of being able to hear exactly what I want to hear and how much of it I want to hear. I feel like my dynamics are far better with them as I can hear what I'm doing in clear conjunction with the other instruments.

    Having a good sound guy to run it all is of course vital.

    Investing in really good quality earbuds make a huge difference. How much do we spend on gear? Personally, spending money on something so I can hear my expensive gear clearly is well worth the money.

    Seriously, the clarity we get is akin to working in the studio. It's wonderful.
     
  5. Dave Fox

    Dave Fox Senior Pedalmaker

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    I use IEMs all the time. Once in a while I'll pull one or both out for whatever reason and I'll hear the actual stage volume - it's insane. I'm right next to the drummer and he hits hard. I'm so glad I started with the IEM's while my hearing was still good. I know a lot of musicians who are almost deaf. You try to have a conversation while loading in or out and they can't hear a damn thing!
     
  6. thiscalltoarms

    thiscalltoarms more gadgets than Batman. Gold Supporting Member

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    Just remember that the headphones that you use are a big component of accurately hearing your tone. Makes no sense to play 2-5k of gear into a pair of apple earphones- it will sound like garbage. Off the top of your head estimate the cost of your pedalboard, number 1 gigging guitar, and number 1 gigging amp. Your in ear headphones should be 15% of your rig value minimum if you want to actually have a good experience long term. Custom molds start around $400, I think UE4Pros at worth every penny.
     
  7. afterosmosis

    afterosmosis Member

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    Agreed, why skimp on the part of your rig that puts the sound of everything else directly into your ears? Custom molds are absolutely worth it.

    That said, I think triple drivers are plenty for a guitar player.
     
  8. crambone

    crambone Supporting Member

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    Yep.

    I have been using IEMs for about 4 years now at church and I wouldn't make the switch to wedges (or those stupid "hotspots", anyone else remember those?!?!) for anything. I am currently using Shure SE102s but am almost to the point of having enough cash for buying a set of 1964ears V3s.
     
  9. rust_in_peace

    rust_in_peace Member

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    I hear what your saying regarding quality. The 15% seems like a good rule of thumb. Admittedly, I've never used IEMs that cost more them $150.

    I'm sure I would have a different experience if I was to use some nice, high-end triple or quad drivers. At this point I don't use them enough to justify putting the money down, though.
     
  10. mikeller

    mikeller Member

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    I am not fond of them either - I find myself loosing my focus on playing and paying too much attention to the IEM.

    One thing that I found that helps though is to have the sound-partner put overhead mic's on the drummer. Those overhead's will pick up some of the ambient sounds and make it sound more live....
     
  11. treeuh

    treeuh Member

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    Just chiming in here... my church uses in-ears exclusively, and the trick is to convince the monitor engineer to set up some room mics and mix those in... it allows you the room sound with some control.

    Really, IEMs really stress the importance of micing up your amp well. I never realised how important it was until I started playing more with IEMs.

    But yeah, don't take one ear out... that's asking for hearing problems. Nothing gets you like wedges, but IEMs can be pretty awesome if you get the right mix.

    To the OP, the only things I'd point out is 1) cheap systems compress all of the audio (bad AD/DA conversion, methinks) 2) you may have to adjust delay trails depending on how you mic your amp... I wrestle with it a bit...
     
  12. crambone

    crambone Supporting Member

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    Where do you usually mic your amp (position-wise) and what kind of mic do you use?
     
  13. michaelscott

    michaelscott Member

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    To the OP (and everyone), going with your effects in stereo and/or with 2 amps mic'd up if you can (not everyone has the ability) is really a game changer. If you have the ability to pan your signals left and right, IEMs really highlight that stereo image and seem to sound a little more "real" than a single mic or mono signal. This also opens more possibilities with how wet you run effects, whether you run them on both sides, etc. Even if your effects cant run stereo, if you can double mic your amp and pan the signals, giving somewhat more of a realistic representation of your tone. I think that's probably a better solution to combat the whole isolation thing, especially if you had a couple of room mics (again, stereo if possible). Any else one trying this?
     
  14. afterosmosis

    afterosmosis Member

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    Mic position & type is something you have to experiment with.

    Lately we've been using a Sennheiser e609 and an Avantone CR-14 ribbon mic on my cab. Our sound man puts both channels in our ears so we can pan/mix/match the two mics to taste. The dynamic/ribbon combination works really, really well.


    [​IMG]
     
  15. crambone

    crambone Supporting Member

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    Very nice, thanks for the pic and explanation.
     
  16. crambone

    crambone Supporting Member

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  17. Ricktoberfest

    Ricktoberfest Member

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    I hear there are IEMs now that have ambient mics built in. Haven't seen it myself and I'm sure it's pricy, but I play 2-4 times live a month so I might have to go looking.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  18. Bman20

    Bman20 Supporting Member

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    IEM's r like anything else: pros and cons.

    Pros:

    -eliminates most if not all feedback problems
    -can hear urself and other individuals clearer
    -bonus of having ur own mix
    -FOH is better due to lower stage volume

    Cons:

    -as a gtr player, u lose that big roomy sound
    -feels like ur in the studio instead of playing live
    -lose the interaction of ur actual amp at gig levels
     
  19. redrider1

    redrider1 Member

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    Sorry if this is the wrong place to post this question. Which forum should I use for hardware questions?

    I'm setting up an IEM system at church and need the hardware. I'm not asking about earphones, I want to know what hardware people are using (Rolls PM50S?). I probably can't afford wireless unless it's used. Are there any decent wired IEM equipment out there?

    Thanks.
     

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