I've got bands this weekend and I'm going to ring out the monitors beforehand.
First, respectfully reply to exactly what I posted in respect to this thread. 1. Turning down ALL frequencies on a graph is not prudent. That's why there is gain and the concept of signal structure.2. There is not an EQ that can isolate 250 HZ without affecting 251, 249, 250.3 Hz etc.. Hence, an exact "250 HZ feedback" couldn't be fixed even if an individual had super-human hearing.Now, the question of feedback resolution. "Ringing" monitors cannot fix most variables that can cause unpleasant feedback on stage. Some engineers will "mix" to avoid feedback rather than providing the artist with optimal monitoring of the performance. I've seen soundmen pull 1K, etc.. out of a wedge's mix because it was "feeding back"! Great! No more feedback- but now the singer is going to want more volume because his voice is less intelligible! So, the sound guy turns up the send. Now, low mid and high frequencies start ringing! So, what does he do? Pulls those down too! Finally, he ends up with an EQ that looks like many of you have seem in the past Nightmare! And, after all that work, the monitor mix still sounds like a**!So, what should you do? This advice applies to vocals only.1. Make sure all your wedges on the deck are the same as your reference wedge in monitor world or at the house.2. Run some nicely mixed pre-recorded music through your reference wedge and EQ to your taste.3. EQ their channel to your taste in a good pair of reference headphones before listening to it in your reference wedge.4. Listen to their channel through your reference wedge and make minor adjustments in EQ that suit your taste. I strongly suggest having the artist play a song while you do this. I tell them that they will not hear anything in their mix during this time. Most are ok with this provided you can EQ your reference wedge quickly!5. Slowly bring up the mix in their wedge. They will give you a "thumbs up" or a head nod, etc.. 6. Ask anybody on stage to either get off stage or cover their ears. Go on stage and face the mic directly at the wedges speakers while standing. If no feedback, cool!! If feedback,turn mix send down. Try again. Then, hold mic to your mouth like you were singing and kneel down in front of wedges (cover 1 ear!!). If no feedback, cool! If feedback, lower mix send. DO NOT CUT FREQUENCIES at this point. Trust your ears.7. Ask artist to play again. If the artist says, "I can't hear myself." Tell them to turn down their stage volume to a level that he/she can hear and begin thinking about where you can get some money to buy better gear! These guys will probably never hire you again. But, atleast you got the best from the gear you have. If the artist says, "Yeah! Sounds good!" Expect future biz!Like I said before, there are too many variables that can affect a monitor mix and cause feedback to possibly post on this board. They are unique to any situation. However, I hope my 7 point advice might give you a good starting point. Cheers.
And this is it, in a nutshell!"Ringing out" monitors is like taking a sledge hammer to a nut. Good smooth monitor sound shouldn't feed back given, reasonably sensible monitor levels, sensible positioning of monitors with due defference to the microphones polar patern and a decent mix.The only time I "ring out" monitors, is to discover problem frequencies that are down to stage resonances from things like standing waves, that's not to say that I leave them pulled out, I still look for solutions such as repositioning or a subtle adjustment of monitor eq, though nothing that drastic. As pointed out, particularly on smaller stages, other issues such as the monitor angle can effect the way that musicians hear themselves. Often musicians will stand so close to the monitor the sound is firing at their belly and not even close to their ears, hence my suggestion for sidefills as an option for dealing with this. Obviously YMMV as may others.
One piece of misinformation that has crept in, is that correcting feedback cuts holes in the frequency response. Properly done, corrective EQ flattens out peaks or bumps in the response, for a flatter result. Of course using an axe (2/3rd octave) to trim your toe nails, could lead to loss of toes. :-( JR
Of course there are actually 2 basic sources of "peaks" in the response that need to be flattened out.The loudspeaker is one (and yes a flat response is the best place to start (and usually works just fine).The second is the peaks in the response of the open mic. So when you add the two together you could end up with some nasty stuff. Or not-depending on the response of each.It is also a misconception that you HAVE to ring out the mics. If the system gets loud enough for use without ringing out the system (and also sounds fine), then there is no real reason to "ring it out".As always- just because it CAN be done-does not mean it HAS to be done.
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