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Author Topic: Pastor is Too Loud!  (Read 6386 times)

Jacob Robinson

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Pastor is Too Loud!
« on: February 07, 2011, 12:32:51 pm »

Hello to all and I want to thank this site for the wealth of knowledge over the past couple months, but now I am her to make my first post.

I run the sound for a small church (130 attendees on an average Sunday) and I am having issues with my pastor/ future father-in-law.  He is a very lively speaker and likes an extremely hot monitor mix, the problem is that his voice is so loud without any added microphone that when i do add in the mic for recording purposes the congregation gets blasted (sanctuary size 30' x 75')

Currently I turn his mic almost all the down and the send to the recorder(Tascam CD-RW900SL) all the way up, this works, but it produces a very distant and quiet sound because there very little mic pickup available before it becomes too loud in the church.  We have an ancient 25+ yr. old peavey board with no aux sends.

I hope I gave enough info for you to understand my situation, any thoughts on how to produce a better recording without introducing more volume to the church would be great.
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Tom Young

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2011, 01:04:23 pm »

I run the sound for a small church (130 attendees on an average Sunday) and I am having issues with my pastor/ future father-in-law.

Talk about "between a rock and a hard place"   :(

What are you trying to record: the sermon, or something else (as well) ?

If it is the sermon (and therefore just the pastor's mic), you need to split this from the primary mix that is feeding the sound system. Obviously.

You said there are no aux sends. To be clear: there is no effects send and no monitor send on this mixer ?

Is there a direct output from each input channel (on the rear) ?
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Tom Young
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Jasen Jacobsen

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2011, 01:11:46 pm »

Currently I turn his mic almost all the down and the send to the recorder(Tascam CD-RW900SL) all the way up,
This sounds like exactly the opposite approach to take. You want a strong clear signal going into the board. Then you want a soft signal going to your amps/front of house speakers. And a strong signal going to your recorder.

You don't provide much info on your board, but there should be a way to separate the level coming into the board from the level going out to your speakers and recorder - typically an aux send. You mention monitors, so perhaps you could use a monitor send to send to the recorder. Strong signal in, low signal to stage monitors, high signal to recorder "monitor", low signal to mains.

- Jasen.
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Jacob Robinson

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2011, 03:50:48 pm »

Quote
What are you trying to record: the sermon, or something else (as well) ?
We record the etire service, music and Sermon,  We get as many requests for music recording as sermons

Quote
there is no effects send and no monitor send on this mixer ?
The mixer does have two monitor sends, but we have a full worship band that might string me from the nearest tree if I took one of there feeds and used it solely for recording.  But maybe I am overlooking a configuration that would work. 


Quote
Strong signal in, low signal to stage monitors, high signal to recorder "monitor", low signal to mains.
I believe the mixer is a Peavy 16/21 (not sure of specific model number) this is the way I currently have it setup
This is the setup I inherited and have never had the motivation to drastically change, but now that I am learning more my motivation for change is rapidly growing.

Below is the list of sliders that are being used

16 mic inputs
"Mon A" (Music & stage monitors)
"Mon B" (Music & stage monitors)
"Left" (main output that is not used at all every channel is faded all the way to the right)
"Right" (this is the output to the main house speakers)
"Master" (this is used as the send to the recorder)

The problem I have is that whenever the "Right"  is turned down nothing is sent thru the "Master" 

in short, it appears as thought the "Master" channel is dependent on "Right" channel

Something I just thought of as I was typing, What would happen if I used the "Left channel" for recording.


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Tom Young

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2011, 06:17:01 pm »

The problem I have is that whenever the "Right"  is turned down nothing is sent thru the "Master" 

in short, it appears as thought the "Master" channel is dependent on "Right" channel

Something I just thought of as I was typing, What would happen if I used the "Left channel" for recording.

As long as you have Left and Right outputs along with the Master output, then yes: this will work. Or at least better than you have now.

Use the pan controls. Pan the pastor's mic channel to 12:00 (center) so it is going to both the Left and Right submasters. Pan everything else to the Right *only*.

Using the pastor's channel fader and the pan control will allow you to keep him mixed in the sound system and where you need him for the recorder. It'll take some tweaking. 
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Scott Raymond

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2011, 06:18:21 pm »


The problem I have is that whenever the "Right"  is turned down nothing is sent thru the "Master" 

in short, it appears as thought the "Master" channel is dependent on "Right" channel

Something I just thought of as I was typing, What would happen if I used the "Left channel" for recording.

That may well be a viable option.... The master likely just sums the left and right channels and if you don't need it give it a whirl.  You can bring in the channels you need by panning them towards center to get them to your recording.  It may take some trial and error to get everything sounding good but at least you keep you house mix at the level you need and get the record level up more.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2011, 06:21:09 pm by Scott Raymond »
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Taylor Phillips

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2011, 07:08:28 pm »

One thing you could also try a hard disk recorder, like the Zoom H1 for instance,
and not take up any of your board outputs. 
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Jacob Robinson

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2011, 08:39:08 pm »

I will give that setup a try on Sunday and let you guys know how it works.


Thanks again for all the quick responses I look forward to learning more as I keep exploring the site.
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Jasen Jacobsen

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2011, 10:38:58 am »

16 mic inputs
"Mon A" (Music & stage monitors)
"Mon B" (Music & stage monitors)
"Left" (main output that is not used at all every channel is faded all the way to the right)
"Right" (this is the output to the main house speakers)
"Master" (this is used as the send to the recorder)

The problem I have is that whenever the "Right"  is turned down nothing is sent thru the "Master" 

in short, it appears as thought the "Master" channel is dependent on "Right" channel

Something I just thought of as I was typing, What would happen if I used the "Left channel" for recording.
Hmm... Excuse me while I think through my fingers.

So your signal path looks like:

mic -> channel in -> pan & fader -> left & right -> master

You have mono outs on left & right, and mono out on the master.

You MIGHT try switching the Right and Master outputs. Send the Master to the mains and the Right to the recorder. That way you could have a nice strong signal all the way through the board to the Master and attenuate the signal to the mains using the Master out. The Right out (split, I'm guessing to L&R in on the recorder) would feed a strong signal to the recorder.

Make sense?

If that works, you could get fancy and do a stereo mix of everything. Use both the L & R outs to the recorder and pan the band around to your heart's content. Since the Master out is mono & summing the L & R you shouldn't notice any change there.
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Jacob Robinson

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2011, 09:01:48 pm »

I ended up panning every channel to 12 O'Clock and then using the right channel for the mains and the left for the recorder.

I tried using the right for the recorder and the master for the mains, but this resulted in a feed to the house speakers that was dependent on the level that was being sent to the recorder.  With the config of using the left for the recorder and right for the mains I can now change the record level completely independent of the mains, and vice versa. . . does anyone see any issues with this, I have yet to try it in a service

Thanks,
Jake
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Jasen Jacobsen

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #10 on: February 12, 2011, 08:48:09 am »

I tried using the right for the recorder and the master for the mains, but this resulted in a feed to the house speakers that was dependent on the level that was being sent to the recorder.
Yep. Good catch.

Quote
With the config of using the left for the recorder and right for the mains I can now change the record level completely independent of the mains, and vice versa. . . does anyone see any issues with this, I have yet to try it in a service
Sounds like a good plan.
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Jacob Robinson

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2011, 11:47:33 am »

Thanks for the help guys, I wished I had stumbled on this forum a year ago!. . . .Next challenge = total system overhaul in the near future hopefully
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David Eidam

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #12 on: February 17, 2011, 03:43:55 pm »

Hi Jacob,

Is your Peavey mixer an MS-Series Stereo Mixing System model? If it is an MS-1621, I may have found a PDF file of the original Owners Manual. Let me know if you'd like me to email it to you.

Regards
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dhe...

Jon Palmer

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #13 on: March 23, 2011, 01:40:28 am »

Hello to all and I want to thank this site for the wealth of knowledge over the past couple months, but now I am her to make my first post.

I run the sound for a small church (130 attendees on an average Sunday) and I am having issues with my pastor/ future father-in-law.  He is a very lively speaker and likes an extremely hot monitor mix, the problem is that his voice is so loud without any added microphone that when i do add in the mic for recording purposes the congregation gets blasted (sanctuary size 30' x 75')

Currently I turn his mic almost all the down and the send to the recorder(Tascam CD-RW900SL) all the way up, this works, but it produces a very distant and quiet sound because there very little mic pickup available before it becomes too loud in the church.  We have an ancient 25+ yr. old peavey board with no aux sends.

I hope I gave enough info for you to understand my situation, any thoughts on how to produce a better recording without introducing more volume to the church would be great.

I've had the same problem with preachers that love to hear their own voice. LOL. Just turn it up and use a dbx compressor limiter on that channel (best) or at least before the recorder. Turn up the sound as loud as possible until his wife demands he stop doing that. I'm joking but if he has been doing this for years, as some do, he may have some hearing loss, hence the needed volume.
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Jim Ogann

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #14 on: March 29, 2011, 02:16:10 pm »

Hello to all and I want to thank this site for the wealth of knowledge over the past couple months, but now I am her to make my first post.

I run the sound for a small church (130 attendees on an average Sunday) and I am having issues with my pastor/ future father-in-law.  He is a very lively speaker and likes an extremely hot monitor mix, the problem is that his voice is so loud without any added microphone that when i do add in the mic for recording purposes the congregation gets blasted (sanctuary size 30' x 75')

Currently I turn his mic almost all the down and the send to the recorder(Tascam CD-RW900SL) all the way up, this works, but it produces a very distant and quiet sound because there very little mic pickup available before it becomes too loud in the church.  We have an ancient 25+ yr. old peavey board with no aux sends.

I hope I gave enough info for you to understand my situation, any thoughts on how to produce a better recording without introducing more volume to the church would be great.
I'd suggest you buy a compressor. The little SCOM 4 gives you (4) in one panel for about $180. We use compressors on all our pastor's mics and will never go back. You can connect it as an insert if your board has insert connectors. The book shows you how to wire the connectors and explains how to set it up. Your pastor can pray quietly or yell and the output of the compressor will be the same level.
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Brad Weber

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #15 on: March 30, 2011, 09:42:05 am »

Your pastor can pray quietly or yell and the output of the compressor will be the same level.
Actually, the level will vary, just not as much.  A basic compressor is simply a fractional multiplier of the signal level.  Typically there is some threshold signal level you select above which the compressor starts to have any effect, if the signal is below that threshold level then nothing happens.  If the signal is above that threshold level then the output above that level is scaled by the compression ratio.
 
So say you set a threshold for -20dBu and have a compression ratio of 4:1.  If the signal level is -20dBu or below then the compressor does nothing.  If the signal level into the compressor is above -20dBu then the level above -20dBu is scaled by 4:1, for each 4dB the signal is above -20dBu there is a 1dB increase.  So a -30dBu or -20dBu input would relate to -30dBu and -20dBu output levels respectively and there is no change.  A -10dBu input would provide a -17.5dBu output and 7.5dB of compression (-20dBu + (10dBu/4) = -17.5 dBu).  A 0dBu input level would result in a -15dBu output and 15dB of compression (-20dBu + (20dBu/4) = -15dBu).
 
A limiter would have more the effect noted as it is essentially an compressor with an infinite compression ratio and once the signal hits the threshold it is not allowed to exceed that level and thus sets the maximum output level.  A comp/limiter or soft knee limiter is pretty much a combination of the two devices, there is one threshold, either independently selectable or a fixed value below the limiting threshold, above which compression is applied and then a second threshold for the level at which limiting is applied.
 
One thing to beware of with applying compressors to Pastors or WLs is that this can affect the dynamics of their vocals, which is often part of their 'instrument'.  Especially if being used primarily to specifically limit the dynamics of their speech, I have found it best to discuss this with such persons prior to implementing it as they may prefer to explore other options.
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Kent Thompson

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #16 on: March 31, 2011, 11:52:42 am »

Actually, the level will vary, just not as much.  A basic compressor is simply a fractional multiplier of the signal level.  Typically there is some threshold signal level you select above which the compressor starts to have any effect, if the signal is below that threshold level then nothing happens.  If the signal is above that threshold level then the output above that level is scaled by the compression ratio.
 
So say you set a threshold for -20dBu and have a compression ratio of 4:1.  If the signal level is -20dBu or below then the compressor does nothing.  If the signal level into the compressor is above -20dBu then the level above -20dBu is scaled by 4:1, for each 4dB the signal is above -20dBu there is a 1dB increase.  So a -30dBu or -20dBu input would relate to -30dBu and -20dBu output levels respectively and there is no change.  A -10dBu input would provide a -17.5dBu output and 7.5dB of compression (-20dBu + (10dBu/4) = -17.5 dBu).  A 0dBu input level would result in a -15dBu output and 15dB of compression (-20dBu + (20dBu/4) = -15dBu).
 
A limiter would have more the effect noted as it is essentially an compressor with an infinite compression ratio and once the signal hits the threshold it is not allowed to exceed that level and thus sets the maximum output level.  A comp/limiter or soft knee limiter is pretty much a combination of the two devices, there is one threshold, either independently selectable or a fixed value below the limiting threshold, above which compression is applied and then a second threshold for the level at which limiting is applied.
 
One thing to beware of with applying compressors to Pastors or WLs is that this can affect the dynamics of their vocals, which is often part of their 'instrument'.  Especially if being used primarily to specifically limit the dynamics of their speech, I have found it best to discuss this with such persons prior to implementing it as they may prefer to explore other options.
On our pastor I use both a limiter and a compressor. It saves the people's ears sitting 5 rows back from the mains. :P  I have to use fairly agressive setting on him but, other guests I can tone them down or in some cases bypass them. Just don't use them as a set and forget thing. From one Sunday to the next I have to change the settings on them. I try to keep his voice sounding as natural as I can using them.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2011, 09:34:41 am by Kent Thompson »
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Brian Ehlers

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Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #17 on: March 31, 2011, 01:47:47 pm »

I try to keep his voice sounding as natural as I can using them.
And that's the key:  to not squash things to the point of sounding unnatural.  In my opinion, this means using a very gentle slope (maybe 1.5 or 2:1), a very slow release time (on the order of seconds), and as low a threshold as is needed -- but without giving yourself a feedback problem.  The attack time needs to be quick enough to catch Plosives, but slow enough to let the transients through.

For those who feel it's a sin to compress the pastor's voice, I suggest you think of it not as squashing down the peaks but as raising up the whispers so that everyone can hear them.  But again, you can only do so much of this before feedback becomes a problem.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2011, 01:49:20 pm by Brian Ehlers »
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ProSoundWeb Community

Re: Pastor is Too Loud!
« Reply #17 on: March 31, 2011, 01:47:47 pm »


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