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Author Topic: Lavaliere Mics in live sound  (Read 6470 times)

darren mcmahon

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Re: Lavaliere Mics in live sound
« Reply #10 on: November 26, 2012, 06:35:39 am »

Hello everyone,

As part of a recent audio upgrade to our installed system we added 4x MKE-2 Gold wireless mics on a Sennheier 2000 series system.  I'm having real issues with getting decent gain and good sound from the lavs though.  I've used the MEK-2 numerous times in theatrical productions where they are hidden in hairlines or costumes, and I've used them many times for audio recording for video.  However, I have limited experience with lavs in this corporate meeting setting.  I'm struggling to get a good sound from them.

In a recent corporate meeting I had 4 speakers using the lavs.  Before the meeting began I listened to all the mics on the PFL and had a good sound from them in the headphones.  So I brought them up in the house though the wash from the PA got into them and the sound went to hell.  So a few tweaks on the PEQ got rid of the mud and the intelligibility was ok but the quality was poor and I had very little gain. 

In these corporate meetings using headsets is usually not an acceptable alternative.  I'm fairly confident with my lav placement.  I did a double loop in the cable to decouple the cable/mic and I had them all placed fairly high on the tie (between the tie clip and knot). 

Can any of you share any tips or offer advice to get a better sound in these corporate situations?

Thanks

-David

Hi

I do a fair bit of corporate using these mics

I also do what Patrick suggested.....

"Try this-- assign all your LAVS to a buss, and insert a graphic eq on that bus.  Place a lav pack on the podium on stage, and turn it up in the PA.  Notch that EQ out as you would for rock n' roll monitors.  They tend to ring around 500hz and equivalent harmonics (1,2,4,8k typically)

This will allow you to actually do some "artistic" EQ on those mics without having to battle feedback with your channel strip.  And you'll find that they actually are pretty good sounding mics."

By the sounds of things I tend to go for similar mic placement,  Also I often have to consider main speaker distances from presenter on some of the smaller bread and butter jobs where you have speakers on sticks, often having to use front fills on a separate send to deal with the gaps in coverage.

I also like the DPA's but generally i do in fact favour the omni's..

just me..,

hope that helps
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Joseph D. Macry

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Re: Lavaliere Mics in live sound
« Reply #11 on: November 26, 2012, 02:21:12 pm »

David
Omni Lavs are not your friend in this application. If you wanted to stay with Sennheier I would use a MKE-104 they are a little bright but EQ will fix it. The best lav mic out there is the DPA-4080 very little EQ to get them loud. If you are doing large panels of people on stage the Dan Dugan auto mixer is incredible.

Omni lavs are often necessary for panel discussions, as the talkers often turn their heads towards each other. Works best if you can get the loudspeakers well in front of the talkers.
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Kevin Maxwell

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Re: Lavaliere Mics in live sound
« Reply #12 on: November 28, 2012, 07:02:55 pm »

Hello everyone,

As part of a recent audio upgrade to our installed system we added 4x MKE-2 Gold wireless mics on a Sennheier 2000 series system.  I'm having real issues with getting decent gain and good sound from the lavs though.  I've used the MEK-2 numerous times in theatrical productions where they are hidden in hairlines or costumes, and I've used them many times for audio recording for video.  However, I have limited experience with lavs in this corporate meeting setting.  I'm struggling to get a good sound from them.

In a recent corporate meeting I had 4 speakers using the lavs.  Before the meeting began I listened to all the mics on the PFL and had a good sound from them in the headphones.  So I brought them up in the house though the wash from the PA got into them and the sound went to hell.  So a few tweaks on the PEQ got rid of the mud and the intelligibility was ok but the quality was poor and I had very little gain. 

In these corporate meetings using headsets is usually not an acceptable alternative.  I'm fairly confident with my lav placement.  I did a double loop in the cable to decouple the cable/mic and I had them all placed fairly high on the tie (between the tie clip and knot). 

Can any of you share any tips or offer advice to get a better sound in these corporate situations?

Thanks

-David

The following is cut and pasted and edited from things I have written over the years.

I used to do a lot of corporate show (I traveled a lot) and I used MKE2 mics all the time. Over the years I have used many different sound systems and I used the in-house systems a lot. The way I deal with this is to have the sound system optimized as best as it can be. I tune the system for linearity Ė what goes in is what comes out. If using subs I feed the subs so the vocal mics are not going thru them. I then insert the appropriate EQ into a subgroup of like mics. For example all lavs in 1 subgroup and all hand-held vocal mic in another. I then EQ those subgroups for best gain before feedback. I use SMAART (audio analysis software) and one trick I use (after tuning the system for linearity) is to make (in this example) the lav my measurement mic. I clip it to something on stage in the area it will be used and then I pump the reference signal (pink noise) thru the house speakers and I see where the lav is sensitive to the pink noise and I take down the problem frequencies. I used to do all of this with feedback and ringing it out by ear but since I started using SMAART (many years ago) I find I can get a more accurate and consistent result much quicker and less annoying to anyone standing around. I of course then listen to the results to see if any more tweaking is necessary. I then save the channel EQ for tapering the input to the personís voice.

I also use automixers for panel discussions. Donít even think of trying to just use gates, it is a disaster waiting to happen. Story available on request. I use the Shure SCM810 automixers and have had excellent results. More info available on request.

Mic placement - If you have to put the mic on their tie, a trick someone told me a few years ago is to have the person look down at their chest and move the mic up the tie till they canít see it (the top of the mic) anymore, at this point move it back to where they could last see it. This is the placement that seems to be the best for a mic on a tie. Try it, it gives a much more consistent sound. I should mention that this is for men only; on a woman you can put the mic much higher without the problems that would be present on a man. On a woman I can clip an omni directional mic right at the neck and it will work fine. I have had excellent results using omni mics (MKE2) on men and women, in corporate work.

Most of the time when using lavs I use an omni lav. I have fewer problems with placement and sound variations then trying to use a cardioid lav. I have been very lucky with omni lavs mostly due to good system tuning and many times good speaker placement. But I have even had good luck with bad systems tuned well and bad speaker placement with a few tricks. One of the bad speaker placement situations was when having to use the ceiling speakers in hotel breakout rooms when there were speakers right above where we setup the stage. The trick I used to use was to cover the ceiling speakers that are over the stage. Sometimes I just used gaffer tape to cover them and sometimes I had with me something I made just for that purpose. I took the material that they use to make the vinyl magnetic signs that they put on the side of trucks and cut circles the size of the ceiling speaker covers. I would then borrow the extending pole with a cup on it that the maintenance department would use to change light bulbs and use that to place the magnetic circle on the speaker grills as long as they where made of metal. Obviously this wouldnít work on plastic grills. At the end of the event I would use the same pole to knock the magnetic vinyl off of the speaker grill and retrieve my disks.   

I did a lot of these events at Disney World and in one room the ceiling over the stage was lower then the rest of the room. I used white gaffers tape to cover the speakers over the stage but I forgot to remove it. That tape stayed there for a few years. Eventually when doing a job there I looked in that room (we didnít use it for meetings for that event) and they had finally taken the tape off of them.
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James A. Griffin

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Re: Lavaliere Mics in live sound
« Reply #13 on: November 29, 2012, 03:53:00 pm »

Slight topic swerve, but I JUST HAD to relay a recent experience.     I was being my usual professional and courteous self two weeks ago when placing an ME2 on the female talent.

After it was attached, she asked "Are you going to turn me on, or do I have to do it myself?"

I paused a moment to see if she heard what I heard, then replied, "I'll take care of it when it's time".

Show went on.  The mic, if not the talent, was turned on when required.

 8)
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Re: Lavaliere Mics in live sound
¬ę Reply #13 on: November 29, 2012, 03:53:00 pm ¬Ľ


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