Let the musicians sort their own mix?

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by skippytheboatman, Feb 15, 2012.

  1. skippytheboatman

    skippytheboatman Member

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    Hello all. I'm wondering wether any-one else has had any success with giving the performers the same mix onstage as the FOH mix? This worked spectacularly well for me recently as the musicians (of various levels and abilities) altered their levels and dynamics without me having to fiddle with the faders much if at all. I am aware that this was down to using the same speakers (Celestion SR's) both out front and as stage monitors and the fact that we were outdoors and the bass was not going through the PA and also that the bands were mostly playing miced acoustic instruments. This would most likely NOT work with a rock band indoors and especially not with loud backline or has anyone tried that with any luck?
     
  2. speakerjones

    speakerjones Member

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    I've only done something like this with an Aviom system and IEM's, working with professionals. I'm not sure what you mean by "giving the performers the same mix onstage as the FOH mix". But giving a bunch of amateur musos control over their own wedges? No thanks!
     
  3. loudboy

    loudboy Member

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    I think he means sending them what the audience hears, and then having them adjust their own playing levels so everything mixes well and everything can be heard.

    We did a big festival this summer and the monitor mixer set up an absolutely killer stereo mix in the sidefills, and then put a little of whatever we wanted in each of our wedges. It was like playing in the greatest stereo you've ever heard - really great.

    Not really feasible for clubs, tho.
     
  4. powermatt99

    powermatt99 Member

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    This is like Marx applied to a band. If there are no hidden agenda and everyone is playing to make the band sound good, this can work. Otherwise, Stalin.
     
  5. 9fingers

    9fingers Supporting Member

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    Sounds like a recipe for ego driven volume wars.
     
  6. 3dognate

    3dognate Supporting Member

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    What we've been doing with our in-ears is putting the house mix in everyone's in-ears in mono to establish a baseline. Then add more of each instrument or vocal in the R or L ear as appropriate to give each person a little more of "me". We run the singer in mono with the house mix with a little more of him. We keep it simple for him.. to quote him "This technology garbage drives me ape sh!t"
     
  7. CRBMoA

    CRBMoA Member

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    In my experience, this probably not the best model.

    Have been a gigging bassist since the early '80s, and have run sound for most of that time, both for myself and for other.

    If the musos are at least semi-pro and do not have ego issues, it CAN work.

    But that is the exception to the rule.

    What you will usually get is peeps that need to hear more of THEMSELVES in a monitor mix (either because of ego, insecurity, or they just flat out don't know what happens when they hit, strum, pluck or sing).

    The post above about everyone getting FOH with an extra helping of [ME] is about right.

    To be honest, most people [read: weekend warriors] do not get what monitors are for. IMHO, you need enough of YOU to be in key, and enough of the other people to make sure you blend, and can follow or lead as needed.

    If you are playing to <250 with only 2 monitor mixes available, you are not gonna get Carnegie Hall in your wedge.

    Obviously, the more advanced the system, the more options available. The past 5-6 years, I regularly (several times a week) played a 500 seat venue with 16 channel stereo in ears, and I heard exactly what I wanted/needed. But that wasn't even an option when I was a pup. And it was never an option at sub gigs.
     
  8. harpinon

    harpinon Silver Supporting Member

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    Aviom's really are nice. My band uses them. I connect mine to a powered nearfield monitor. The volume is very controlled that way. Loud wedges get messy.
     
  9. GCDEF

    GCDEF Supporting Member

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    The problem with putting the house mix in the monitors is it doesn't take the musicians' proximity to the instruments into account. If I'm standing 4 feet away from the drums, I don't want/need to hear them in the monitors. The singer(s) need to be heard over the drum and guitar amps, and usually you don't want or need guitar and bass in the monitors, at least on their own side of the stage. Singers generally want a little more of themselves in their own monitor so that it's easier to hear your voice when doing harmonies. Likewise, the lead singer may not want the distraction of the backup singers in his/her own monitor.

    People in the audience that may be 100 feet away are going to hear things completely differently than somebody standing on the stage right next to the drums and amps.

    It's not a "professional" vs. "amateur" thing at all.
     
  10. rokpunk

    rokpunk Member

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    nope. why would you want toms, high hats, overheads, etc. spread all over the stage? that's a recipe for a loud stage.
     
  11. Flogger59

    Flogger59 Member

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    An acquaintance with the Cirque de Soleil was doing monitors for one production. Every musician had an 01V on which to make up their own monitor mixes. The band wasn't tight. At one meeting he announced that due to budget cuts everyone would have to play with the same monitor mix. The band tightened up immediately.
     
  12. Echo

    Echo Member

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    I always like my on stage sound to be a good blend of everything, so I can hear it the way I would like to in the audience. The better we feel we sound on stage, the better we play.
     
  13. skippytheboatman

    skippytheboatman Member

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    very interestin.. especially the band with the personal 01V mixers. I'm not sure why the threat had that effect? The folks who say this wouldn't work have a point and in a way, and have missed the point. I wouldn't attempt this with drums, a guitarist who needs to turn up to the sweet spot on his valve amp or anywhere where the bass is all over the room and stage. It is an extension of the Nashville record everyone in a cartwheel with baffles idea and the bluegrass every one around a mic each stepping up for their solo idea. You would expect success to depend on experienced musicians who see the overall picture (the song?) as a whole rather than the egotist with something to prove scenario. But it seemed to work well with the less experienced players as well. The onstage volume was low and as I mentioned, because it was 'open air' we didn't have dodgy acoustics clouding the issue. I was hoping that the musicians would control their dynamics more effectively and play better together. Any-one ever tracked a singer guitarist seperately and after hours of messing around with eq and compression wished that they had tracked them together?
     
  14. hackenfort

    hackenfort Supporting Member

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    Yes it is.... Every one playing on stage will want it their way, when what is really important, the paying audience needs to hear a great show.

    Those on stage should present the a great show, but leave it to the sound man to make is sound great!
     

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