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Author Topic: What a week for me!!!!!  (Read 1341 times)

Luke Geis

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What a week for me!!!!!
« on: August 26, 2018, 07:07:58 pm »

I got to play with some new toys and try a different sub deployment this week on two different jobs.

First I got to play with a brand spanking new 6 pack of Shure Digital Axient!!!!! All I can say is that it is almost exactly like the ULX series with a much more confidence inspiring metric to gauge performance with. IT has a quality meter within the WWB UI that shows pretty much what it states. It is a purple meter that shows the quality of the wireless performance. I also like that it shows you what each antenna is doing and their relative strengths.

What I will say is that you should hold off on getting the new Axient until the ADX series transmitters come out. I had the coordination transmitter ( for automatic channel switching ), but it only works with transmitters that aren't even released yet....... pretty much pointless to get the Axient unless you intend on having the coordinator and the adx series packs and bodies. Needless to say, I had a 100% problem free week of use with this new offering from Shure!!!!!

My second show was one that was outdoors and needed an extra boost to cover the Beer Garden area with a separate PA. I had a second PA system set up about 30-40' away and in front of the PA pointed at about a 45* angle into a beer garden. This has always been a hard area to cover well with the main PA because it is just out of reach to give the impact as it is just far enough off axis to be in the zone and also just far enough away to not have the desired SPL.

That's not the neat part though. I used a two sub cardiod array setup to help extend the low end out into the beer garden and it was time aligned well enough that it coupled with the mains energy and it didn't cause any issues at all with those who were near it and within the mains PA coverage!!!! I set the subs up one atop the other and used the bottom sub as the inverted unit. The subs have a cardiod preset in them ( the SRX818SP ) and it works really well. I thought I might have some more weirdness when standing nearer the delay stack and was surprised that there was little or no issue. My helper was a bit perplexed as well. He had never really even heard of cardiod arrays let alone seen one in action and he said it was crazy how little energy was coming from behind and off the sides of the subs, but that as soon as you stepped in front it was game on.

It is common practice to use three subs for cardiod, but a two sub cardiod setup has better rearward cancellation and in this case, it worked out stellar for me. I have used cardiod setups in the past where it was well applied, but never in a situation quite like this. If you need extension of sub content that is off axis of the main PA, this may very well be the best way to do it.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2018, 07:13:41 pm by Luke Geis »
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Dave Guilford

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Re: What a week for me!!!!!
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2018, 08:13:07 pm »

Cardiod to extend LF?  Your mind is playing tricks on you.  Cardiod sub doesn’t give more out front, it reduced some in the back.  My understanding is that you actually get less out front with cardiod, than would would woth them stacked forward-facing. 
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Luke Geis

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Re: What a week for me!!!!!
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2018, 09:19:05 pm »

I don't think you read what I said correctly. I needed more SPL in the beer garden. The energy from the main stage was coupled in the forward plane with the delay stack with minimal interaction behind the delay stack. I.E. I effectively maintained SPL beyond 50' into an area that I couldn't have without the delay stack. The cardioid array reduced interactions behind it which were in plane with energy coming from the main PA. I used the cardioid array on the delay stack, not the main PA system.

In a two sub, cardioid array, you get more rearward rejection, but maintain close to what two subs would produce out front. Now time align this energy from what was coming from the main stage and you extend the coverage of the sub content out further ( not lower in frequency as you may have been thinking I meant ). Yes, the cardioid sub array does have some smearing and oddness to it, but it reduced the real issues it would have caused with those who were in its proximity.

« Last Edit: August 27, 2018, 12:03:23 am by Luke Geis »
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Johannes Halvorsen

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Re: What a week for me!!!!!
« Reply #3 on: August 27, 2018, 03:54:09 am »

Neat!

Is there some theoretical reason why this is not a standard practise way of extending/even out sub coverage?
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Dan Mortensen

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Re: What a week for me!!!!!
« Reply #4 on: August 27, 2018, 03:56:15 am »

Cardiod to extend LF?  Your mind is playing tricks on you.  Cardiod sub doesn’t give more out front, it reduced some in the back.  My understanding is that you actually get less out front with cardiod, than would would woth them stacked forward-facing.

I've heard this before and my experience contradicts it.

This summer I had a little series where I used 4 double 18 subs a couple times (Bag End ELF), and 2 boxes once or twice. The use depends on the music, and a few times I didn't use any subs.

The first time the two boxes per side were stacked one above the other. The sound beyond about 75' was underwhelming.

The second time only seemed to need one box per side, set up standing up. It sounded fine at the stage, but throw was minimal, like 50'. Not a lot of sub signal source (from one bass guitar). Band repeatedly said from the stage how great it sounded, but I felt it was okay.

The third time, last show of the season, I set all 4 up, standing up (edit: 2 per side), with 3' box front to box front, and delayed the front ones by 3' on my BSS Omnidrive Compact (End Fire array, the Bag Ends don't seem to work very well with the arraying Luke describes). Processing was single channel from the Bag End stereo Integrator, don't remember the model number, then sent to the BSS then to the amps.

Each time, during setting up, the front boxes needed to be disconnected to avoid cable run where the band would be loading in. Listening to one box even on the stage, they didn't sound like they went down very deep and seemed tubby.

Plugging in the second box brought the bottom down, got rid of the perceived tubbiness, and made it really sound solid. I, too, felt that the cardioid extended the LF response. I felt the stack configuration also sounded tubby. All the x-over settings were the same for all the shows, as were the amps and their settings.

This listening during setup was all just playing background music.

Walking out into the crowd area, and during the show, the bass projected out to at least 150' and really, really sounded good. This was a community family concert in the park and not super loud levels, so YMMV.

The band this night said from the stage that they'd never heard outdoor sound so good (their words), and people came up to me all evening saying how good it sounded (not bragging). Mid/highs for all shows are 2 Meyer UPJ-1P per side. This was the 16th year I've done that series and it's always sounded pretty good, IMO, FWIW.

I've varied the subs over the years, mostly putting two Meyer USW-1P's on the ground in front of the stage, usually splayed in an outward pointing V (stage at top of V, and the V much flatter), but sometimes in End Fire. This was the first year using a Power Alley config and had no problems with it.

Now that I think about it, the first show this year I used the Bag Ends in the flattened V, and it was OK but nothing like the End Fire using 4.

This season ending configuration visually looked like there was hardly anything there, but it worked great and was real easy to set up, compared to lifting boxes down to and up from the ground, plus the hassle of kids climbing on the subs (it's a low key event). Although we try to keep them off.

If my mind is playing tricks on me, I'm happy to have that trick played repeatedly and look forward to the next time.
« Last Edit: August 27, 2018, 02:36:03 pm by Dan Mortensen »
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Re: What a week for me!!!!!
« Reply #4 on: August 27, 2018, 03:56:15 am »


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