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Author Topic: Best 48+ channel analog for under $7k?  (Read 33485 times)

Aaron Nickerson

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Re: Best 48+ channel analog for under $7k?
« Reply #100 on: May 14, 2013, 01:39:30 pm »

Currently I'm still at the point where I can put the entire service on to one user layer. But we've been starting to look at adding more mics, such as putting two mics on the kick drum instead of one, two mics on the snare, individually miking each tom, moving to two mics on each guitar amp, using stereo keyboards...at some point I'm going to have to start putting inputs on different layers, and I won't be able to view their meters or adjust their parameters without changing layers.
If they are set up properly, how often do you really need to adjust the relationship between two kick mics, two snare mics, two amp mics, etc....

I have a baby grand on stage with two mics (even though I am at a larger church, i don't double mic anything else, though I do have a mic on each tom), I have gotten to the point where I have set them up how I want it to be, and I control it (along with my keys) on a VCA.  I can throw all three on a second layer and forget about them if I want to.  I make sure everything is good during sound check & rehearsal, then very rarely ever have to adjust the two piano mics individually during service.  I don't like losing the control of having everything on the top layer, but there are some things that if I do my job right, I should not need access to (in my personal situation).

Let's be honest, if you had two mics on everything you wanted to have two mics on, and it was set up properly, how often would you need to adjust them individually during service?

Personally, I have had to carefully consider the channels I have, and I have found some that I don't often need to mess with during service (assuming I have an overall VCA control).  For my situation that is BGVs and Piano/Keys.  So when I can't fit everything on the top layer, that is what I move to the second tier.  If I were in your shoes, and wanted to find a way to get more channels, I would consider using the DCA's on your console, they may make you not even miss the channels you have to put on the second layer.
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TJ (Tom) Cornish

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Re: Best 48+ channel analog for under $7k?
« Reply #101 on: May 14, 2013, 01:40:23 pm »

More tonal control and possibilities, plus it seems to be the thing to do nowadays. The church's we look up to are doing that.

I don't care either way, whatever we need to do to get the sound we want.
And more problems, and more complexity, and apparently in your case, a new mixing board.  Sound quality depends on:
1. Talent
2. Talent
3. Talent
4. Competency of tech staff
5. Ratio of stage volume to PA volume
6. Room acoustics
7. Speaker system quality and deployment
8. Having enough of everything - cables, mics (one per thing), IEMs, etc., that work and are reliable
9. A reasonable mixing board - which your Roland is

Everything else is a rounding error.  Presumably the big churches you look up to have the above list nailed down.

Personally, even if I/our church had all these things nailed down perfectly, I'd still struggle with the extra complexity and cost of two mics per guitar amp, etc., simply because it's perfectly possible to get great sound without this, and the money can likely be better spent elsewhere.
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Jason Lucas

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Re: Best 48+ channel analog for under $7k?
« Reply #102 on: May 14, 2013, 01:58:00 pm »

If they are set up properly, how often do you really need to adjust the relationship between two kick mics, two snare mics, two amp mics, etc....

I have a baby grand on stage with two mics (even though I am at a larger church, i don't double mic anything else, though I do have a mic on each tom), I have gotten to the point where I have set them up how I want it to be, and I control it (along with my keys) on a VCA.  I can throw all three on a second layer and forget about them if I want to.  I make sure everything is good during sound check & rehearsal, then very rarely ever have to adjust the two piano mics individually during service.  I don't like losing the control of having everything on the top layer, but there are some things that if I do my job right, I should not need access to (in my personal situation).

Let's be honest, if you had two mics on everything you wanted to have two mics on, and it was set up properly, how often would you need to adjust them individually during service?

Personally, I have had to carefully consider the channels I have, and I have found some that I don't often need to mess with during service (assuming I have an overall VCA control).  For my situation that is BGVs and Piano/Keys.  So when I can't fit everything on the top layer, that is what I move to the second tier.  If I were in your shoes, and wanted to find a way to get more channels, I would consider using the DCA's on your console, they may make you not even miss the channels you have to put on the second layer.

I'd probably be adjust them about as much as I adjust anything else. Every song is different.

So far I've yet to find a way to "set up" everything to the point where I don't still have to make EQ or adjustments or have to watch the meters during the actual worship set.

The problem is that I'm working with humans. They have a tendency to play inconsistently sometimes. They often play louder or softer during the actual worship set than they do during sound check. Or maybe the guitar player's pedals are all messed up and I see a 10dB jump on the meter when they stomp on a pedal. Or maybe the singer was being really soft during sound check and I had to give them some extra gain and then they belt it out during the set.

And then with things like dual kick mics where one has more of a snap to it and one has more "oomph", I might want more "oomph" and less "snap" in one song and want the opposite in the next song.
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Jason Lucas

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Re: Best 48+ channel analog for under $7k?
« Reply #103 on: May 14, 2013, 02:01:22 pm »

And more problems, and more complexity, and apparently in your case, a new mixing board.  Sound quality depends on:
1. Talent
2. Talent
3. Talent
4. Competency of tech staff
5. Ratio of stage volume to PA volume
6. Room acoustics
7. Speaker system quality and deployment
8. Having enough of everything - cables, mics (one per thing), IEMs, etc., that work and are reliable
9. A reasonable mixing board - which your Roland is

Everything else is a rounding error.  Presumably the big churches you look up to have the above list nailed down.

Personally, even if I/our church had all these things nailed down perfectly, I'd still struggle with the extra complexity and cost of two mics per guitar amp, etc., simply because it's perfectly possible to get great sound without this, and the money can likely be better spent elsewhere.

Well, the multi-mics is something the band is pushing for more than me. The band leader is a guitar player and is looking at what options he's got. We're all kind of collectively trying to figure out how we can improve our sound and gear is easier to get than talent...lol.

Like I said though, I'm honestly up for whatever it takes to get us sounding good. Whether that means more mics, less mics, whatever.
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Aaron Nickerson

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Re: Best 48+ channel analog for under $7k?
« Reply #104 on: May 14, 2013, 02:31:07 pm »

I'd probably be adjust them about as much as I adjust anything else. Every song is different....

The problem is that I'm working with humans. They have a tendency to play inconsistently sometimes. They often play louder or softer during the actual worship set than they do during sound check. Or maybe the guitar player's pedals are all messed up and I see a 10dB jump on the meter when they stomp on a pedal. Or maybe the singer was being really soft during sound check and I had to give them some extra gain and then they belt it out during the set.

And then with things like dual kick mics where one has more of a snap to it and one has more "oomph", I might want more "oomph" and less "snap" in one song and want the opposite in the next song.

I do adjust all that song to song, but I do it with snapshots or VCA's.  I am not familiar with the snapshot features on your particular console, but a lot of the adjustments you mentioned can be made very easily between songs with a snapshot on most digital consoles.  Every Sunday, I have at least one snapshot for each song, and I can and have changed pretty much everything with the push of a button.  If you are not taking advantage of what your console can do with snapshots, that might help. 

As far as new gear goes... as TJ said, talent is by far the biggest factor in determining the quality of sound.  You can overcome poor gear with good talent, you cannot overcome bad talent with good gear. 

As my mentor used to tell me when I was just learning this stuff , crap in, crap out.  Increase the talent, and you will increase the sound quality.  One of our drummers really struggles to stay on tempo.  More mics is not going to solve that problem.  =D
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Jason Lucas

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Re: Best 48+ channel analog for under $7k?
« Reply #105 on: May 14, 2013, 03:15:34 pm »

I do adjust all that song to song, but I do it with snapshots or VCA's.  I am not familiar with the snapshot features on your particular console, but a lot of the adjustments you mentioned can be made very easily between songs with a snapshot on most digital consoles.  Every Sunday, I have at least one snapshot for each song, and I can and have changed pretty much everything with the push of a button.  If you are not taking advantage of what your console can do with snapshots, that might help. 

As far as new gear goes... as TJ said, talent is by far the biggest factor in determining the quality of sound.  You can overcome poor gear with good talent, you cannot overcome bad talent with good gear. 

As my mentor used to tell me when I was just learning this stuff , crap in, crap out.  Increase the talent, and you will increase the sound quality.  One of our drummers really struggles to stay on tempo.  More mics is not going to solve that problem.  =D

The problem with using scenes/snapshots is that I can't predict some changes. I used to use scenes more but I got away from that because it was actually hurting more than helping. It's been a long time since then so I might try that especially if we start using more mics.

I've learned over time and am reminded constantly that gear is no replacement for talent. Whether you use one mic or a thousand, a good band will sound good and a bad band will sound bad.
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Samuel Rees

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Best 48+ channel analog for under $7k?
« Reply #106 on: May 14, 2013, 03:46:06 pm »

While you can mix your kick and and kick out all night, I think you'll find that isn't how most people use them. I use multiple kick mic's to better capture a more complex sound, or process 'click' and 'boom' separately. If available I'll gang them or put them on a VCA.
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Aaron Nickerson

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Re: Best 48+ channel analog for under $7k?
« Reply #107 on: May 14, 2013, 03:49:15 pm »

The problem with using scenes/snapshots is that I can't predict some changes.
Isn't that the truth!  Last month I had a guitarist that switched from a telecaster to a les paul between sunday sound check and first service without telling anyone.... Another week I had a lead singer and BGV accidentally swap mics back stage (despite having their names in the mics on gaff in silver sharpie)

But despite the unpredictable, I have found snapshots to be a great help.  It allows me to make changes quickly between songs in a service that would be a lot more complicated without it.  This past Sunday I had one song that was lead by one of my BGVs, So I had to pull her out of my BGV DCA, run her through the lead vox reverb instead of the BGV reverb, and make the opposite changes on the singer who lead the other songs.  EQ changes on both singers, Plus the changes for everyones monitors, who needed the new lead singer on that song, but not the others.  Plus the basic volume mix to start the song, plus changes to my noise gate on my toms, and a few other changes I can't remember off the top of my head, all with the push of a button.  And then changed again at the end of a song with another button push.
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brian maddox

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Re: Best 48+ channel analog for under $7k?
« Reply #108 on: May 14, 2013, 04:01:40 pm »

And more problems, and more complexity, and apparently in your case, a new mixing board.  Sound quality depends on:
1. Talent
2. Talent
3. Talent
4. Competency of tech staff
5. Ratio of stage volume to PA volume
6. Room acoustics
7. Speaker system quality and deployment
8. Having enough of everything - cables, mics (one per thing), IEMs, etc., that work and are reliable
9. A reasonable mixing board - which your Roland is

Everything else is a rounding error.  Presumably the big churches you look up to have the above list nailed down.

Personally, even if I/our church had all these things nailed down perfectly, I'd still struggle with the extra complexity and cost of two mics per guitar amp, etc., simply because it's perfectly possible to get great sound without this, and the money can likely be better spent elsewhere.

okay, i think this needs to go somewhere that we can just copy and paste it whenever we need it.  So much truth.  So few words.

Most importantly, if there isn't talent on the stage, you're not gonna get where you want to go, no matter what gear you have.  I learned as i moved up the sound mixing food chain that as the acts got better, my job got easier.
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brian maddox
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Jeff Foster

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Re: Best 48+ channel analog for under $7k?
« Reply #109 on: May 14, 2013, 04:11:54 pm »

<snip>...it seems to be the thing to do nowadays. The church's we look up to are doing that.

WORST.  REASONS.  EVER.

If you understand the concepts, all your staff are capable of properly working with that setup, AND it accomplishes a need or fixes a problem, then by all means, do it.  But DON'T ever do something just because the church up the street is doing that.  Their church is different, with different staff, different musicians, different equipment, and a different room.  You need to look at what works for you and not what works for them.

I've looked at mega-churches to see what they are doing and see how certain things might be adapted to meet our needs, but I never look at someone else's system and think that I have to do something too just because they do it that way.  In fact, I know of one mega church around here that does the exact opposite of what works for us on one thing....they have all their praise team on wireless mics and use a single wired mic for special soloists.  I keep all our praise team wired and use wireless only for special vocalists.  If I tried to do what they did, I'd increase my battery expenditures by more than 6 times, inevitably have frequency coordination issues, vocalists that swap mics without telling anyone, etc.  What that church does may work for them because they have the staff to handle all that wireless coordination.  If I had a staff member dedicated to wireless equipment, that might make sense for us too.  But I don't, and I don't need the extra hassle (and cost).

I'm sorry if this comes off strong, but this is one big sticking point that I have with my staff.  Don't ever come to me and tell me that we need to change something because you saw it done that way somewhere else - even if it is a good idea.  I want to hear why that approach will work for US before I'll even consider it.  Show me that you're concerned with our services and our people first, then we'll consider doing what you saw somewhere else.

It's fine to look at what others are doing and think through whether or not that approach will work for you, but don't ever do something just because someone else does it that way.
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Jeff Foster
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ProSoundWeb Community

Re: Best 48+ channel analog for under $7k?
« Reply #109 on: May 14, 2013, 04:11:54 pm »


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