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Author Topic: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions  (Read 1766 times)

Nathan Riddle

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Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« on: December 07, 2016, 06:10:51 pm »

Not sure if this should be here, or installed, or basement, mods move wherever is best.

Disclaimer: I'm here to learn. Not call out methods as wrong. I'll let more experienced people do that.

So I'm installing lighting at my local church's new campus.
A different company is doing sound (and has been mentoring me which is nice) and subcontracted out the flying/installing of the speakers to a different company.

Room is shallow and wide with an arched stage. So 4x point source boxes were chosen with one sub in the middle.

Not that they really matter for my question, but hey- more info right?
Sub = QSC GP218
Mains = some sort of high-end JBL point and shoot boxes (when I'm there tonight I'll try to get model #) VTX/CTX variety.


So I'm chatting with the installer asking about deployment and setup and alignment, what he uses to align, etc. You know the things y'all have taught me to do when setting up a system.

I ask about system tuning and how he does it. Says there isn't much to do with the simple point and shoot boxes. -Alright, probably so, but maybe check for different things right, best alignment with sub for best coverage, eq things for flat...etc? I don't really know I'm still super new to aligning systems/tuning systems and need to take some classes. He's the expert just watch and learn right?

He says he uses the six studio digital with his iPhone to test the system. Okay, thats fine; I was thinking smaart & earthworks or something, but sure if you can get good results with that, then cool.

Then I ask about alignment and if he's going to phase/time align the system. "uh yeah we do all that don't worry." I'm thinking, can the studio six digital do dual channel FFT? I don't think so, but maybe it's not necessary... what do I know??

Then for the first part of actual sound. Pink noise throughout the room and walk the room with the phone spl meter and the mic...? Okay I get it balancing the system SPL.

Then walking the room with the phone & mic setup with RTA This is where it got me... y'all all keep saying: RTA IS TIME BLIND, USING IT IS POINTLESS!!!!

They wrap up the system tuning by playing music they like. Good for them, sounds pretty good. I mean I can't complain about the sound, but I haven't heard the music before so I don't know what it's supposed to sound like either. But still, is RTA still a thing?

So now there's me scratching my head not sure what to do? I kind of want to take my smart rig in there and see what the phase alignment on the sub is in different positions.

Is phase alignment really not that important in smaller venues with simple speaker setups?
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Ivan Beaver

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2016, 08:02:50 pm »



Is phase alignment really not that important in smaller venues with simple speaker setups?
The only time you should not be concerned with phase is with a SINGLE speaker system on a SINGLE amp channel.

Anytime you have more than ONE speaker, you should be concerned with phase.

How much difference will it make?-it depends.

How much can you do about it?-it depends.

It depends on the specific layout (speakers and audience), what the source material is etc.

In the "ol days" we weren't so much concerned with phase because it was harder and more expensive to measure and we have very limited tools in which to deal with time etc.

These days, measurement systems are pretty cheap and so are the tools to deal with it.

Also the knowledge is given freely.

Will it still make sound and most people be happy?  probably.  Could it be better?  maybe.

But some people are simply to lazy or don't know enough about what is going on-so they make excuses and downplay the whole issue.
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Bill McKelvey

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2016, 08:28:19 pm »

Not sure if this should be here, or installed, or basement, mods move wherever is best.

Disclaimer: I'm here to learn. Not call out methods as wrong. I'll let more experienced people do that.

Snip

He says he uses the six studio digital with his iPhone to test the system. Okay, thats fine; I was thinking smaart & earthworks or something, but sure if you can get good results with that, then cool.

Then I ask about alignment and if he's going to phase/time align the system. "uh yeah we do all that don't worry." I'm thinking, can the studio six digital do dual channel FFT? I don't think so, but maybe it's not necessary... what do I know??


Audio Tools by Studio Six Digital does have dual channel analyzer. They also have a recommended interface and microphones to use with it so you can have repeatable results.
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Nathan Riddle

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2016, 08:37:06 pm »

Well that's nice. Good to know. I used the app when I had an iPhone but not anymore.

Can it wirelessly do so?

I did not observe anything more than SPL meter and RTA.

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk

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Bill McKelvey

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2016, 08:46:38 pm »

Well that's nice. Good to know. I used the app when I had an iPhone but not anymore.

Can it wirelessly do so?

I did not observe anything more than SPL meter and RTA.

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk

Not sure what you mean by wireless. The interface would need to be connected to the pink noise source and a microphone. The microphone could be wireless with a proper set-up. Rational Acoustics sells such a set-up.

If all you saw was SPL and an RTA they are doing nothing but looking at pretty pictures. As you know RTA is time blind. You still need the proper tools and to know what you are looking at.
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Nathan Riddle

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2016, 08:52:44 pm »

I mean wirelessly send pink noise to system so that you can walk around with the mic plugged into the iPhone and watch the fft do its thing.

I agree with your Synopsys. It just turns out the system is simple enough to get it close by plugging things in and setting xovers.

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk

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Andrew Henderson

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #6 on: December 08, 2016, 10:39:35 am »

.It just turns out the system is simple enough to get it close by plugging things in and setting xovers.
I'm curious; what do you mean by "It just turns out..."?

Do you mean that you decided that it sounds good enough that you don't want to fool with it anymore? That the installer/designer told you not to worry about it? That your boss/pastor at the church won't let you "mess with" the sound?

I'm not saying any of these are right or wrong; I've had simple systems that I've setup without measuring anything. I'm just curious about the conclusion you came to.
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Nathan Riddle

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2016, 11:07:20 am »

I'm curious; what do you mean by "It just turns out..."?

Do you mean that you decided that it sounds good enough that you don't want to fool with it anymore? That the installer/designer told you not to worry about it? That your boss/pastor at the church won't let you "mess with" the sound?

I'm not saying any of these are right or wrong; I've had simple systems that I've setup without measuring anything. I'm just curious about the conclusion you came to.

I mean that in this situation and in this context with these components in this room with the music selected the system ended up sounding just fine with the minimal tweaking they did and no actual measurement, eg.

pretty pictures.

I could go and do whatever I want, if I wanted to. But I don't feel a need to go and do such a thing.

A) I wouldn't be paid for it so it would be for my own fun, not that I wouldn't do it. But I'm there to finish a job that is way behind schedule (not my fault, lol) and I can't deal with extra work when I wasn't asked to do it and someone else was paid to do it.

B) Any changes I made would probably be so small in the grand scheme of things that I would be the only one to notice through confirmation bias.

C) I don't care enough. Probably come from A & B so maybe this one is redundant.

Will it still make sound and most people be happy?  probably.  Could it be better?  maybe.

But some people are simply to lazy or don't know enough about what is going on-so they make excuses and downplay the whole issue.

If I was mixing there regularly then maybe I'd try my hand at tuning, for experience's sake.

I bet that my major gripe about the system is the QSC GP218 sub and I can't fix that by tuning the system so... meh.

I can't help that they keep choosing sound companies to install and do things that get it 80% and at a reasonable cost and don't trust the 'kid' to design things better.

...I'd rather have my TH118's, but hey...whatevs.
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Andrew Henderson

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Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2016, 11:20:37 am »

Cool, makes sense to me. Thanks for sharing.
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Nathan Riddle

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #9 on: December 08, 2016, 12:33:55 pm »

No problem!

And I probably came across as a bit more pessimistic than I wanted to.

It's probably one of their best systems thus far. I just have that vision of 'best' ? whatever that means :P

And I've made mistakes on the lighting system, though I'm going the extra mile to fix it, and they're pretty minor imo.

My main point of this thread was I wasn't sure if FFT was necessary or not and I wanted to ask. Especially after the Nathan Lively thread/book.
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Bill McKelvey

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #10 on: December 08, 2016, 08:21:16 pm »

Glad everything has worked out.
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Jay Barracato

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #11 on: December 11, 2016, 04:33:24 pm »

If you have 4 top boxes and one sub where in the room do you set the alignment for?

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Nathan Riddle

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #12 on: December 11, 2016, 11:49:27 pm »

Okay, full disclosure, I don't fully grasp all of the tuning methodologies out there.

I wish I had some extra money/time to pay and go to smaart classes or timo/merlijn classes or sysaudcon.

But while trying to learn by reading Merlijn's website & Timo's videos I am thinking that that there is a decent way to get the sub to align over crossover freq (and above/below it) with the mains at multiple positions using 180 to even 270 degrees from Merlijn's circle avatar where most of the audience plane exists in summation or equal but not cancelation.

Something to the effect that on average every listener is hearing same/consistent sound.

https://www.merlijnvanveen.nl/en/calculators/107-sub-align


BTW,
I did a good bit of listening on the JBL AE series which is installed in the room the other day. I don't think they go loud enough and distort pretty annoyingly fairly quickly. They sound pleasant and good at low volumes, but when trying to get the volume up something isn't working properly. At least I think so. Could be a different issue. The building is still being built so maybe once everything finalized? Not sure, like I said, I'm doing lighting... Might be mixing in there, not sure yet.
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Weogo Reed

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #13 on: December 18, 2016, 02:52:56 pm »



Hi Nathan,

A note about moving your microphone around to different places in a room, when using a dual channel measurement system:
Unless you are on a perfect arc to maintain the exact same distance from speaker to mic, you will need to re-establish delay-time at each microphone location.

Listening to the speakers and turning them up, you say they don't go loud enough.
My first thought is to check if one of the boxes is somehow wired with reverse polarity.

Thanks and good health,  Weogo
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Nathan Riddle

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Re: Installed System deployment thoughts/questions
« Reply #14 on: December 20, 2016, 11:10:52 am »


Hi Nathan,

A note about moving your microphone around to different places in a room, when using a dual channel measurement system:
Unless you are on a perfect arc to maintain the exact same distance from speaker to mic, you will need to re-establish delay-time at each microphone location.

Listening to the speakers and turning them up, you say they don't go loud enough.
My first thought is to check if one of the boxes is somehow wired with reverse polarity.

Thanks and good health,  Weogo

Thanks, I agree; If I was to spend some more time I might try and use the delay tracker in SMAART.

Perhaps, I just feel they don't sound great when loud. It doesn't seem to be reverse polarity on the sides. Could be anything though and I have no current desire to deal with it. I believe at the new building I will be mixing there regularly so I will drag out the smaart rig and try to optimize the system as best as possible. But that'll be on paid time after the initial push to have lights/sound done in 3 days (before xmas eve).

So I'll update this thread in the future. Just to kind of detail my journey and help others out who want to follow the same path.

A further update is even with chairs in the room the flutter echo is horrible. We're going to try to convince the contractor to put acoustic treatment on the side walls and give the interrior decorator a cow  :P
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