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Author Topic: Small Operator System Details and Rationale  (Read 6639 times)

Mike Monte

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Re: Small Operator System Details and Rationale
« Reply #20 on: April 06, 2022, 10:05:13 AM »

Does anyone want to share:
- what sound gear (speakers/mixer/mics/etc.) they are currently using
- why they went with that particular gear
- the application (type of live music only, please   instruments, etc.)
- how you transport it
Me: part-time sound tech, full time musician
My rig(s):
Speakers: Yorkville TX9s (4), TX8 (4), TX4 (4), TX3 (2), E152 (4) E808 (reloaded w/ b&c 18tbx 100)(2)
Monitors: Bose 402 (three pairs), QSC K10, QSC K8 (2)
Racks: (5);
-   Rack 1: Furman power conditioner, Bose 402C, TX3P, Crown XS4300, XLS2500, XTI4000
-   Rack 2: Furman power conditioner, Bose 402C, TX4P, Crown XS4300, XTI4000, Itech6000
-   Rack 3: Furman power conditioner, Bose 402C, TX4P/8P, Crown XS4300, XTI4000, Itech6000
-   Rack 4: Furman power conditioner, TX8P, Crown XS4300, XTI4000, Itech8000
-   Rack 5: Furman power conditioner, Bose 402C, E152PP, Crown XS4300, Itech6000
All of the above racks have one connection for power and a patch panel with speakons on the back. Plug’n go.

A&H QU24 & QU16 mixers each w: iPad mini, router

-   Mics: bunch of e835’s, 57’s, 58’s, drum mics: e604’s, D6, D112 (also use 57’s on drums)
-   Lights: 16 can (2 trees of 4, two floor mounts of 4) PAR 38’s (w/150 watt LED bulbs), dimmer packs, DMX Operator Pro, snakes, etc.

Additional  stuff: Yorkville M1610-2/M810-2 powered mixers, E10 speakers (4), (One Crown Itech5000HD as a spare for racks 1-5) two Crown K2 power amps
Generators for my PA: Honda eu3000is (2)

I was gung-ho about doing the club scene when I started out but soon learned that it was way more fun to be playing on stage rather than tech’ing a stage, so I started looking for small festivals, multi-band events, HS graduations, HS musicals, etc...basically things that pay significantly more that are somewhat music related.  I still gig an occasional club…

My mixers were purchased as new.  90% of my speakers, power amps, processors were purchased as used.  (All “used” power amps were purchased with warranty still left on them [I called Crown with the serial #’s prior to purchase].  I sent them all back to the factory (under warranty) to be checked-out (the Itech and XTI amps had the ribbon cable/display panel replaced).

My usual club rig is my TX3 rack with two TX3’s and two ES808’s with four Bose 402’s, K10, two K8’s (as monitors) along with two trees of lights.  (More than enough RIG for the clubs around here.)
I fit my club rig in my Ford Expedition with trailer-hitch-mounted cargo rack.

I like what I have although it is heavy (combination of gear weight & my age).  My gear has paid-for-itself time and time again.  I have thought about side-grading (not upgrading IMO) to an active rig but if my gear works well (albeit heavy), why spend the $?

For larger outdoor events I will use my e152’s as monitors, rent a van / trailer, or subcontract-out for the additional gear when it makes sense to do so.
I try to keep a balance in my doings; 80-85% performing, with the rest as a tech.  Some years it flips a bit but the above is what I prefer.

If I were to upgrade anything I would upgrade: my lights……….. My light rig is spartan at best; old-school, clunky, etc.  It doesn’t use much wall-power…  A 16 fixture LED rig would be nice – no dimmer packs, etc….. 


 
 
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scottstephens

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Re: Small Operator System Details and Rationale
« Reply #21 on: April 06, 2022, 12:08:03 PM »

   Hey All. I hope everyone is doing well. And for what it is worth, I find topics like this pretty helpful for little guys because they find out what gear is worth investing in to start and grow a business. If you can call sound gear an investment.
 
   I use 2 small JBL rigs. Because at 54, I am done hauling BIG, HEAVY things.  And the gear I have fits well into my 2015 Honda Pilot and I can still get about 20 MPG.  I still have my 4 MRX 512's which have made me a crap ton of money. I power these with a Crown xti 4K.  For other shows, I use JBL PRX 812's and PRX 818's.  These too, have made me a lot of money.  They have held up very well and I have never had anybody complain about them.  If I get a call for larger events, I call a friend who has can handle it.  My board is a A & H QU16. Good sounding, lots of versatility, and if needed, lots of monitor mixes.  I also have 13 Audio-Technica 3000 series wireless headset mics. I also have a few Shure SLXD and a Senny handheld if they are requested/needed.

  Everything I have is PAID for several times over. They continue to make me money and the clients like the sound, which to the best of my ability is present but not noticed. By that I mean, the sound should just work and not be an issue.  90% of the gigs I do are community and school events where the client is spending other people's money. And 90% of my clients are repeat clients for the past 5 years or more.
 
   As often said here, Buy once cry once. Charge enough to have somebody else cover your butt if somethings happen. And Be nice!

Scott
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Scott Holtzman

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Re: Small Operator System Details and Rationale
« Reply #22 on: April 06, 2022, 02:14:19 PM »

   Hey All. I hope everyone is doing well. And for what it is worth, I find topics like this pretty helpful for little guys because they find out what gear is worth investing in to start and grow a business. If you can call sound gear an investment.
 
   I use 2 small JBL rigs. Because at 54, I am done hauling BIG, HEAVY things.  And the gear I have fits well into my 2015 Honda Pilot and I can still get about 20 MPG.  I still have my 4 MRX 512's which have made me a crap ton of money. I power these with a Crown xti 4K.  For other shows, I use JBL PRX 812's and PRX 818's.  These too, have made me a lot of money.  They have held up very well and I have never had anybody complain about them.  If I get a call for larger events, I call a friend who has can handle it.  My board is a A & H QU16. Good sounding, lots of versatility, and if needed, lots of monitor mixes.  I also have 13 Audio-Technica 3000 series wireless headset mics. I also have a few Shure SLXD and a Senny handheld if they are requested/needed.

  Everything I have is PAID for several times over. They continue to make me money and the clients like the sound, which to the best of my ability is present but not noticed. By that I mean, the sound should just work and not be an issue.  90% of the gigs I do are community and school events where the client is spending other people's money. And 90% of my clients are repeat clients for the past 5 years or more.
 
   As often said here, Buy once cry once. Charge enough to have somebody else cover your butt if somethings happen. And Be nice!

Scott


That sounds so like my retirement except I am going to sell the pile of utility 12" speakers (almost 60 of them) and when the right deal comes across get a D&B stacking system like some C series tops and subs, a few B2's and a small stack of Q10 and StageMax monitors.  I can combine these bits together to make nice packages and will be dealing with people who are willing to pay for better sound.  I will find a helper that can keep inventory and the warehouse tidy and go out to gigs and do the heavy lifting. 



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Jeff Lelko

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Re: Small Operator System Details and Rationale
« Reply #23 on: April 07, 2022, 02:54:36 AM »

I think the topic name is fine, but that's just my two cents.

Here are a few bits of mine to contribute, keeping in mind that I do sound and the corporate/local level, lighting at regional level, and pyro at the pro/national level:

Sound:
Aside from the usual pieces of sound kit I've really enjoyed my A&H dLive investment.  With the majority of my sound jobs only needing a handful of inputs I really like the dLive's ability to run "headless" or simply with the IP8 fader wing plus laptop.  It gives me just the right amount of tactile control without needing to haul in a massive FOH console, yet I still get the full dLive toolbox at my fingertips.  It's not particularly cheap compared to X/M32 offerings at half the price or less, but for my personal inventory it's been an outstanding addition.

Lighting:
While now considered an obsolete oddball, my ETC Congo Kid continues be an excellent personal console that can niche into rolls often requiring a board several times its cost.  I wrote up a detailed review several years ago that can still be found here, but the thought process outlined within that review still remains valid for guiding purchases today.  With ETC's Congo/Cobalt Series now obsolete I'd venture towards either MA3 or Hog4 if making the purchase today, but for the moment the Congo Kid is holding up just fine for instances where renting an MA3 is unnecessary. 

Other bits of lighting in personal inventory range from ADJ and Chauvet to Martin and High End.  As I think most regulars here know I personally choose not to use no-name imports in my rigs and consider ADJ and Chauvet DJ to be a minimum acceptable product baseline depending on the application at hand.  Aside from the typical staples of a lighting rig I've found myself owning quite a few specialty fixtures that can't easily be rented (Elation Sniper Pros, ADJ Ninjas, etc.).  While not seeing the same levels of use as Mac Vipers or Robe Pointes it's also much harder to rent those when needed, and they've more than made their investment back.  They're also a nice addition to my collection of vintage effect lights! 

Trussing:
I'll make a shameless plug for Prolyte Verto Truss here.  I've got an ever-expanding inventory of this with another 5-figure purchase of it stuck somewhere in the supply chain backlog.  Once you try the Verto Truss you won't want to go back to anything else!  Yes, it's expensive upfront, but the labor cost savings with rapid assembly along with no need for tools makes it a great long-term investment.  Not having to hammer truss pins alone is worth the cost!

Pyro:
I won't get into specific systems here, but for all-weather field use I've been happy with my DeWalt ToughSystem 2.0 tool boxes.  They won't replace standard road cases or larger pelican boxes, but for keeping power tools, consumables, and other equipment safe and dry I have no complaints.  My EZ-UP Eclipse 10x15 tent has also survived many storms bouncing around on a barge in the Atlantic, so I can't really ask for more than that.  I destroyed my GoPro Fusion camera, but the GoPro Max that was sent to me free of charge as a replacement through the GoPro protection plan has been quite nice - gotta share my work with all 4 of my YouTube Subscribers!  ;D 
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Doug Fowler

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Re: Small Operator System Details and Rationale
« Reply #24 on: April 07, 2022, 11:31:05 AM »


Well it's busy enough the "Buy Cialis Guy" is back.  Seriously I am not sure where what I (or the other Scott) said anything that would take away the merit. 



Doug mentioned a new forum.  It will still require policing but that probably is a good idea.  The new forum should be non-audio professionals trying to accomplish a single task that they believe will solve all their audio issues.  Seriously, the folks seeking help start in the LAB because they don't read the rules, then if the subject gets legs it is moved to the lounge.  That's cool but the lounge is supposed to be for those working everything from the corner pub with the "dad" band (not sure where that came from but I just caught it and it is awesome) to the small sheds with the regional 80's and Disco tribute bands, ballrooms, lawnchair gigs et al.  We know who we are.  If you aren't filling 162ft of trailers every weekend then the lounge was supposed to be for us, growing our understanding as practitioners and business people.  Certainly some people really get into digging into mysteries and talking folks through the process. 


So indeed another forum may be the solution, this one clearly carrying out the original mandate of the lounge and then allowing the lounge to catch newcomer or "breathless" issues that peoples lives depend on!

Dad bands, Cargo shorts bands, lawn chair gigs.  Ahh those can be fun afternoons. I’m still trying to figure out when cargo shorts went out of “style”.  I might start clipping my key ring with a biner to my belt loop again, and just to piss of the fashion nay sayers also clip a nice coil of 550 cord on the other side.

Got my Spyderco Wave in my pocket,  good length of 550 clipped to my waist.  Solves a lot of problems if you need it.
Never heard “lawn chair gigs” before, good one! 
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Dave Garoutte

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Re: Small Operator System Details and Rationale
« Reply #25 on: April 07, 2022, 12:36:21 PM »

We do a little of everything (no pyro :o).
Nothing bigger than a medium street fair.
My target is small, high quality shows.
Everything fits in my 17' box truck.  Honda Fit for smaller gigs.

Mains:  DXR12, DSR112, SM96, SM80 depending on the needs.
Subs: DSR15, JTR C212, Th118.
Mons: DXR10, RCF NX12SMA.
Board: Soundcraft Performer 16 & 24 & stageboxes, UI24, misc utility mixers.

Mics: full compliment of Senny, plus misc others;  e935 my go to vocal.
Wireless: 10 ch EW300/500

Modular stage (self built), pipe & drape.

Lighting: Chauvet Colorado Solo series, Luminair.

Video: BMD PCC4k and ATEM, PTZoptics.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2022, 12:39:02 PM by Dave Garoutte »
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Nathan Riddle

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Re: Small Operator System Details and Rationale
« Reply #26 on: April 07, 2022, 04:19:43 PM »

We do a little of everything (no pyro :o).
Nothing bigger than a medium street fair.
My target is small, high quality shows.
Everything fits in my 17' box truck.  Honda Fit for smaller gigs.

Mains:  DXR12, DSR112, SM96, SM80 depending on the needs.
Subs: DSR15, JTR C212, Th118.
Mons: DXR10, RCF NX12SMA.
Board: Soundcraft Performer 16 & 24 & stageboxes, UI24, misc utility mixers.

Mics: full compliment of Senny, plus misc others;  e935 my go to vocal.
Wireless: 10 ch EW300/500

Modular stage (self built), pipe & drape.

Lighting: Chauvet Colorado Solo series, Luminair.

Video: BMD PCC4k and ATEM, PTZoptics.

How do you like the SM96 vs SM80?

And 17ft box truck... Lift or ramp? What make?
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Dave Garoutte

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Re: Small Operator System Details and Rationale
« Reply #27 on: April 07, 2022, 09:46:58 PM »

How do you like the SM96 vs SM80?

And 17ft box truck... Lift or ramp? What make?
Ford ex-Uhaul.  Ramp.
My stage lives in it permanently and saves me a ton of work for each deployment.

The first real test of the SM96 will be next week.
Have a 20+ show summer series coming up and we're going to fly them with a JTR cap212 sub.
Much testing and aligning to do.
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Jeff M Hague

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Re: Small Operator System Details and Rationale
« Reply #28 on: May 07, 2022, 11:18:18 AM »

Hello all!

My portable rig:

1 Dell laptop - core I7, 16Gb RAM, 16" touchscreen
2 10" Android tablets
1 GL iNet WIFI router
2 Furman PL Plus DLC
1 Midas M32Live
1 Midas M-Air
2 Midas DL16
2 QSC KS118
4 QSC K12.2
2 EV ZLX12p
2 EV ZLX15p
1 Audix D6
1 Sennheiser MD421
6 Sennheiser e604
2 Sennheiser e609
4 Sennheiser e945
2 Shure SM58
2 Shure SM57
8 K&M tall boom
6 K&M short boom
2 Radial Pro DI
1 Radial ProD2
1 Radial ProAV2
2 poles for the QSC Ks
2 speaker stands (when I cant use the poles)
Several cat6 shielded Ethernet cables with ethercon connectors - various lengths
60 XLRs - 15', 20', 25' and 50'
4 FanTail to FanTail 4 ch snakes - 30' and 60'
1 100' 24 x 8 FanTail to Box snake (never used)
1 50a 240v distro with 2 50' 6-4 AC drops - various 240v plugs. (I rarely use it but it is super nice to have)
A bunch of 15a and 20a 120v quad and single AC drops - various lengths
Various small racks, cable trunks and gear bags

I have run the entire rig on a single 15a circuit but usually run 2.

It all fits very nicely in to a 2012 Toyota Sienna with the back seats removed. It leaves plenty of room for a pop-up tent, tarps, gig bag and the passenger seat for a helper. And it doesn't even block the rear window view!

When I cant use the M32Live or when it has to sit side stage, I use the the Dell and M32edit or Mixing station as FOH, I have a Bluetooth receiver to send break music from a tablet at FOH, a stereo wireless IEM set to send the cue mix back to FOH and a cheap wireless mic for talkback. I can run FOH entirely wireless - even AC if I have to - as long as the show isn't more than about 4 hours. I also have a small battery backup that can run it about an extra hour and I can always charge things at the stage during breaks.

I got the M-Air for small rooms where there isnt room for the M32Live and quickly got used to mixing strictly on glass - I really kinda like it now. Then I realized they make the M32C for the same price as the M-Air so I have ordered 1 which hopefully I'll have by the end of June. With that and the DL16s, I'll have 32 in by 16 out even for small shows.
I plan to put the 2 Furman units, the M32C, both DL16s, the IEM set, the wireless mic set, the Bluetooth receiver and a WIFI router in to a 12sp shallow rack on wheels and have everything pre-wired internally - set the speakers and monitors, set FOH, set the rack, mic, wire and gig!

I have a house gig and the club has the same speakers - mains and monitors, an X32 and 2 S16s but a somewhat different mic kit. I like the rig a lot but couldn't bring myself to buy Behringer gear so I went with the Midas. I have always been a big fan of Sennheiser mics and Radial DIs but you cant go wrong with Shure SM5x or the Audix D6 so I have those for folks who insist. Personally I prefer the MD421 on kick - I'd rather do the "kick scoop and spike" on the channel eq instead of having it fed to me from the mic. In the past I have used cheap mic stands and its always been a battle with them getting loose or broken so with this rig I "splurged" on the K&Ms and although they are super heavy, I am really pleased with them. A lot of the gear I use I bought because of advice from this forum and I have rarely been lead astray - thanks to all of you!

I wish I had this rig back in the 80s and 90s when I was on the road with a corpy cover band doing wedding receptions and corporate parties with 4 d15 scoops, 4 2-way d12/horn tops, GL2400, 16sp FX rack, amp racks, etc. Wedding planners hated me lol!
Today I do mostly small clubs up to maybe 250 punters or small outdoor festivals up to 500 or so - rock mostly. I plan to get 2 more KS118s which would step it up a bit as far as crowd size.

Have fun!
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Jeff

Steve M Smith

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Re: Small Operator System Details and Rationale
« Reply #29 on: May 08, 2022, 04:40:21 AM »

When using my own equipment, it’s for small folk/acoustic events.

Midas M32R and Soundcraft Si Compact mixers.
QSC K Subs and K12.2s for FOH.
RCF ART 312As for monitors.
Shure SM58s, Sennheiser E835s and AKG D770s, but now now mainly using SE Electronics V7s for vocals.
SE electronics X1 and a couple of SE5s for acoustic instruments.
RED5 drum mics.
My own design and build of DIs with a high impedance input for piezo pickups.
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ProSoundWeb Community

Re: Small Operator System Details and Rationale
« Reply #29 on: May 08, 2022, 04:40:21 AM »


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