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Title: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Shane O'Neal on November 21, 2012, 11:54:19 am
2 Part question:

I am a sound tech for a local Bluegrass Gospel group. We currently run a small Soundcraft mixer to a Driverack PA+ to a JBL PRX618S and two 12" EAWs for High/Mids. The Driverack is doing all of the crossover. We just recently added the JBL to replace a much smaller sub, and are now having a lot of problems with vocalist's "P's and T's" popping through the sub. Really all I want feeding the sub is the bass singer and the bass guitar, but with our current config, I don't see how to seperate them. We have no available aux. Is there something else I can try to reduce the popping? I would still have the problem with the bass vocals even if I was able to isolate his channel to the sub. Hopefully there is something I can try in the interim before our next upgrade...see below.

2nd Part!
Hopefully soon, we will be going with a digital mixer with more aux sends and built in compressor/gates etc. If I put the sub on an aux, can I still run it through the Driverack in order to set eq and ring out the system? Any advice on setting up the compressors on vocals etc.

Thank you,
Shane (a newbie!)
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: gary makovsky on November 21, 2012, 12:19:32 pm
2 Part question:


Is your high pass engaged for each vocalist. Depending on your board, some high pass are adjustable. I sometimes go up to 250 Hz depending on the singer and high pass slope.

No on the drive rack for aux fed subs unless you switch to all mono. left for subs and right for mid/highs.

I run a second driverack for aux subs only.

do a search for vocal compression, discussed extensively on here. there is a compression 101 guide, search on the web to get ya started.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Tim McCulloch on November 21, 2012, 01:07:18 pm
2 Part question:

I am a sound tech for a local Bluegrass Gospel group. We currently run a small Soundcraft mixer to a Driverack PA+ to a JBL PRX618S and two 12" EAWs for High/Mids. The Driverack is doing all of the crossover. We just recently added the JBL to replace a much smaller sub, and are now having a lot of problems with vocalist's "P's and T's" popping through the sub. Really all I want feeding the sub is the bass singer and the bass guitar, but with our current config, I don't see how to seperate them. We have no available aux. Is there something else I can try to reduce the popping? I would still have the problem with the bass vocals even if I was able to isolate his channel to the sub. Hopefully there is something I can try in the interim before our next upgrade...see below.

2nd Part!
Hopefully soon, we will be going with a digital mixer with more aux sends and built in compressor/gates etc. If I put the sub on an aux, can I still run it through the Driverack in order to set eq and ring out the system? Any advice on setting up the compressors on vocals etc.

Thank you,
Shane (a newbie!)

Foam windscreens for the microphones and judicious use of channel strip high pass filter, like Shane mentions. You can turn down the LF on the inputs for your S/A/T vocalists, too.  Their vocals don't go low enough to get into the subs... and in actuality your bass singer probably has only a few of his lowest notes that get into the sub woofer range.   It's also possible that you're driving the sub harder (or that it simply has more output) than what you had before.  Turn it down a little.

One of the singers I've had the pleasure of working with is Dan Britton, one of Guiness Book record holders for lowest pitch bass singers (he's traded that distinction with JD Souther a couple of times).  Dan's voice could make wedge monitors jump around on stage until the woofer died.  He's now singing with Pierce Arrow.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Shane O'Neal on November 21, 2012, 07:17:43 pm
Is your high pass engaged for each vocalist. Depending on your board, some high pass are adjustable. I sometimes go up to 250 Hz depending on the singer and high pass slope.

No on the drive rack for aux fed subs unless you switch to all mono. left for subs and right for mid/highs.

I run a second driverack for aux subs only.

do a search for vocal compression, discussed extensively on here. there is a compression 101 guide, search on the web to get ya started.

Our current board does not have high pass filters but I keep the low frequencies on the channel eq very low on all vocalists except the bass singer.

we are running mono currently so your suggestion for running the driverack sounds like a possibility. during the setup phase on the driverack, it tries to balance left/right channels. would this setup affect this? I would expect it would "confuse" the driverack since it would hear much different frequencies from the sub than the mains. Is there possibly a setting on the driverack to get around this?

Also I forgot to mention that we are using a total of 10 large diaphram condensors for vocals and instruments. Bass guitar running direct. Bleed is a major issue and if not for IEM, feedback would be outragious. It still occurs occasionally when pushing the system hard.

Thanks for the suggestions. Tim and Gary!
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on November 21, 2012, 07:23:40 pm
Our current board does not have high pass filters but I keep the low frequencies on the channel eq very low on all vocalists except the bass singer.

we are running mono currently so your suggestion for running the driverack sounds like a possibility. during the setup phase on the driverack, it tries to balance left/right channels. would this setup affect this? I would expect it would "confuse" the driverack since it would hear much different frequencies from the sub than the mains. Is there possibly a setting on the driverack to get around this?

Also I forgot to mention that we are using a total of 10 large diaphram condensors for vocals and instruments. Bass guitar running direct. Bleed is a major issue and if not for IEM, feedback would be outragious. It still occurs occasionally when pushing the system hard.

Thanks for the suggestions. Tim and Gary!

There's just so much wrong here. 

First off, please tell me you're not really trying to use the "auto-EQ" feature of the DRack.  That'll screw things up royally.

Next, who told you to use 10 LDC'S?  Yes, an experienced sound person with good gear might put a few of those on stage, but in your situation they are  the WRONG THING.

Sorry for yelling.

Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Shane O'Neal on November 21, 2012, 08:29:28 pm
There's just so much wrong here. 

First off, please tell me you're not really trying to use the "auto-EQ" feature of the DRack.  That'll screw things up royally.

Next, who told you to use 10 LDC'S?  Yes, an experienced sound person with good gear might put a few of those on stage, but in your situation they are  the WRONG THING.

Sorry for yelling.

Yes we are using the auto eq on the driverack...Suggestions?

I have the same concerns regarding the LDC's but that is what they had when I was asked to run their sound. They love the sound of the mics and do not want to change them, yes they are a challenge.

"It is what it is."  :(
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on November 21, 2012, 08:56:28 pm
Yes we are using the auto eq on the driverack...Suggestions?

Stop.  Stop now.  Do some research and learn how to optimize the system to the room by ear.  The "auto-EQ" feature is a ridiculous gimmick that causes more problems  than it solves.  One of the things it usually does is put a stiff LF boost on the graphic.  That would be part of the problem.

Quote
I have the same concerns regarding the LDC's but that is what they had when I was asked to run their sound. They love the sound of the mics and do not want to change them, yes they are a challenge.

"It is what it is."  :(

I can see using multiple LDC's if you have a lot of vocalists, proper positioning and the necessary gear and experience to run things. 

You'll need plenty of good EQ, preferably some decent parametric for each of the "good sounding" mics, and the ability to maximize the effectiveness of the system in each room/setup in which you find yourself.

Yes, LDC's can have a warmth that is attractive.  But doing sound is always finding a balance between whats' good and what works.  If it sounds good when you have one but allows you no workable headroom when you have 10 of them, then how good is that?  If it doesn't give you any acceptable level of sound, then it's not so good.  And if it feeds back and is unusable, then what's the difference between it and a bad sounding mic?

You'll all figure it out eventually, but it appears that you need more and better gear to process the 10 LDC's and the ability to "tune" the system in the first place.

The auto-EQ cannot tune the system for you no matter what the manual and the advertising would have you believe.

As to the issue of compression:

What do you want to compress and why?  Or are you considering it "because it's there"?  Signals should be processed only to address a specific need.  Otherwise, leave well enough alone.  I have never had to compress choir or chorus vocals.  In some few cases I've used a limiter or set up a compressor to perform the function of a limiter, but in your case I'd be very careful about adding anything like compression to an already ticklish gain structure.  Most likely it'll just increase the incidence of feedback.

This is getting to be a long post.  Anything further will require much more specific information from you, such as the number of vocalists, the instruments, expected sound levels and make and model of any equipment.  Until you can tell us everything about your setup the replies will tend to be general (not a bad thing) and we'll be guessing at what's happening, why it's happening and how to improve things.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Shane O'Neal on November 21, 2012, 10:12:29 pm
Stop.  Stop now.  Do some research and learn how to optimize the system to the room by ear.  The "auto-EQ" feature is a ridiculous gimmick that causes more problems  than it solves.  One of the things it usually does is put a stiff LF boost on the graphic.  That would be part of the problem.

I can see using multiple LDC's if you have a lot of vocalists, proper positioning and the necessary gear and experience to run things. 

You'll need plenty of good EQ, preferably some decent parametric for each of the "good sounding" mics, and the ability to maximize the effectiveness of the system in each room/setup in which you find yourself.

Yes, LDC's can have a warmth that is attractive.  But doing sound is always finding a balance between whats' good and what works.  If it sounds good when you have one but allows you no workable headroom when you have 10 of them, then how good is that?  If it doesn't give you any acceptable level of sound, then it's not so good.  And if it feeds back and is unusable, then what's the difference between it and a bad sounding mic?

You'll all figure it out eventually, but it appears that you need more and better gear to process the 10 LDC's and the ability to "tune" the system in the first place.

The auto-EQ cannot tune the system for you no matter what the manual and the advertising would have you believe.

As to the issue of compression:

What do you want to compress and why?  Or are you considering it "because it's there"?  Signals should be processed only to address a specific need.  Otherwise, leave well enough alone.  I have never had to compress choir or chorus vocals.  In some few cases I've used a limiter or set up a compressor to perform the function of a limiter, but in your case I'd be very careful about adding anything like compression to an already ticklish gain structure.  Most likely it'll just increase the incidence of feedback.

This is getting to be a long post.  Anything further will require much more specific information from you, such as the number of vocalists, the instruments, expected sound levels and make and model of any equipment.  Until you can tell us everything about your setup the replies will tend to be general (not a bad thing) and we'll be guessing at what's happening, why it's happening and how to improve things.

Thanks Dick,

Here are some specifics:

Mains are EAW FR129z
Vocal mics: Shure KSM27  &  AKG C3000b
Inst. mics:  Audio Technica AE3000

(Mic layout/stage plot from stage left to right)
Fiddle/Vocal - AKG (sings into same mic he plays into)
Lead guitar/vocal - KSM and AT
Mandolin/Bass Vocal - AKG and AT
Bass Guitar/Vocal - Vocal is KSM - electric bass is direct
Rhythm Guitar/Vocal - KSM and AT
Banjo/Dobro/Vocal - KSM and AT
Each mic stand has 2 mics - one for instrument and one for vocal

I was hoping that the compressor/limiter would attenuate the "pops" and gating the mics would help with bleed. I will do some research on system tuning as well.

Thanks again,
Shane
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on November 21, 2012, 11:32:29 pm
Thanks Dick,

Here are some specifics:

Mains are EAW FR129z
Vocal mics: Shure KSM27  &  AKG C3000b
Inst. mics:  Audio Technica AE3000

(Mic layout/stage plot from stage left to right)
Fiddle/Vocal - AKG (sings into same mic he plays into)
Lead guitar/vocal - KSM and AT
Mandolin/Bass Vocal - AKG and AT
Bass Guitar/Vocal - Vocal is KSM - electric bass is direct
Rhythm Guitar/Vocal - KSM and AT
Banjo/Dobro/Vocal - KSM and AT
Each mic stand has 2 mics - one for instrument and one for vocal

I was hoping that the compressor/limiter would attenuate the "pops" and gating the mics would help with bleed. I will do some research on system tuning as well.

Thanks again,
Shane


I'm not going to say that these are the wrong mics, just that they're not really very practical for what they're trying to do. 

A comp/limiter will do nothing to cure the "pops".  Pop filters and high-pass filters are what you should be looking for.  Gating is also counter-indicated for a variety of reasons, the main one being that when the gate opens up, there you are.  Problems.  Gate closes, problems and sound go away.  Gating in this situation will be extremely audible and not a pretty thing.

Here's a list:

1.  Learn to identify and even out the "hot" frequencies in your setup by proper speaker/mic placement and judicious use of GEQ/PEQ.

2.  Get a decent console.

3.  Work with the group to settle on more practical microphones. 

I'll just say that I own many LDC's and have often used the AE3000's, but I wouldn't throw them all up for an acoustic group like this.  If you solo these mics, you'll be able to hear pretty much everything that's going on on stage in each of them.  Turn one up, you turn up more than just the individual voice or instrument, UNLESS the players are strong, highly skilled and work the mics very, very close, keeping the ratio of desired sound to stage bleed as high as possible.

If the various mics are contributing too much to the mix, it's time to get something with a tighter pattern.  Contrary to what the band is thinking, there are great sounding mics which aren't WFO as far as pattern goes.

It could be worse, though.  They could be using the "single mic" technique and wanting loud, loud monitors..........
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Shane O'Neal on November 22, 2012, 12:05:31 am

I'm not going to say that these are the wrong mics, just that they're not really very practical for what they're trying to do. 

A comp/limiter will do nothing to cure the "pops".  Pop filters and high-pass filters are what you should be looking for.  Gating is also counter-indicated for a variety of reasons, the main one being that when the gate opens up, there you are.  Problems.  Gate closes, problems and sound go away.  Gating in this situation will be extremely audible and not a pretty thing.

Here's a list:

1.  Learn to identify and even out the "hot" frequencies in your setup by proper speaker/mic placement and judicious use of GEQ/PEQ.

2.  Get a decent console.

3.  Work with the group to settle on more practical microphones. 

I'll just say that I own many LDC's and have often used the AE3000's, but I wouldn't throw them all up for an acoustic group like this.  If you solo these mics, you'll be able to hear pretty much everything that's going on on stage in each of them.  Turn one up, you turn up more than just the individual voice or instrument, UNLESS the players are strong, highly skilled and work the mics very, very close, keeping the ratio of desired sound to stage bleed as high as possible.

If the various mics are contributing too much to the mix, it's time to get something with a tighter pattern.  Contrary to what the band is thinking, there are great sounding mics which aren't WFO as far as pattern goes.

It could be worse, though.  They could be using the "single mic" technique and wanting loud, loud monitors..........

thanks for your input!
we will work on the suggestions listed and update the thread on changes and improvements.

Thanks again,
Shane
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Shane O'Neal on November 22, 2012, 03:16:57 pm

I'm not going to say that these are the wrong mics, just that they're not really very practical for what they're trying to do. 

A comp/limiter will do nothing to cure the "pops".  Pop filters and high-pass filters are what you should be looking for.  Gating is also counter-indicated for a variety of reasons, the main one being that when the gate opens up, there you are.  Problems.  Gate closes, problems and sound go away.  Gating in this situation will be extremely audible and not a pretty thing.

Here's a list:

1.  Learn to identify and even out the "hot" frequencies in your setup by proper speaker/mic placement and judicious use of GEQ/PEQ.

2.  Get a decent console.

3.  Work with the group to settle on more practical microphones. 

I'll just say that I own many LDC's and have often used the AE3000's, but I wouldn't throw them all up for an acoustic group like this.  If you solo these mics, you'll be able to hear pretty much everything that's going on on stage in each of them.  Turn one up, you turn up more than just the individual voice or instrument, UNLESS the players are strong, highly skilled and work the mics very, very close, keeping the ratio of desired sound to stage bleed as high as possible.

If the various mics are contributing too much to the mix, it's time to get something with a tighter pattern.  Contrary to what the band is thinking, there are great sounding mics which aren't WFO as far as pattern goes.

It could be worse, though.  They could be using the "single mic" technique and wanting loud, loud monitors..........

What mics would you recommend in our situation?
specific models, or chracteristics.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on November 22, 2012, 03:42:40 pm
What mics would you recommend in our situation?
specific models, or chracteristics.

I just find it strange that a band would invest in higher-end mics bordering on "studio" types and then plug them through a cheaper, limited feature mixer and no system EQ. Of course, after having played that type of music for a  major part of my living for over 30 years, I'd probably want to give them all picking and singing lessons as well......... ;D

Not knowing the players or having heard them, I can't really say that anything I've said to this point and from here on is going to be more than 50% correct, but IMO, the most professional and workable setup is to go with a VERY good pickup system and the associated pre-amp/processing from the same manufacturer for the guitar to hedge your bets along with the microphone, especially if the guitar takes solo rides.  Probably THE most common weak link in BG performance is the guitar solo.  Either the mic technique is not good or the rest of the band won't back off and let the guitar sing out.  Being able to bring up a direct-fed channel to support the mic or carry the solo is extremely desirable.  Better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.  Also, in certain "touchy" rooms/setups, it will give you an "out" for balanced performance........always remembering that running sound is the ultimate exercise in compromise, balancing what works with what sounds good.

There is a spectrum of staging/presentation which runs from multiple mics/inputs for each performer all the way to the single LDC technique.  Somewhere between those two extremes there's a happy median.  The mics you choose should serve the setup as much as possible.  My personal preference as a player is to have a good mic like a DPA mounted on the fiddle and mandolin, a good single LDC vocal mic or good, hyper-cardioid vocal mics/person and one or two good SDC's down for low-slung instruments like the banjo, guitar, dobro, etc.  Stand-up bass should have a high-quality transducer WITH a matching pre-amp or even a small bass amp with a balanced direct out. 

I'll look for some clips of various setups to append.  For now:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PpzEcyegQIQ

Single mic w/bass direct in.

More to follow.........

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=98jNS8MmEqw

Single vocal mic w/solo support mics low and bass direct or mounted mic. 

And for the finale:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYhlXdxbAXc&feature=autoplay&list=AL94UKMTqg-9D-_gdWlLpRfoETvIF6w9Dh&playnext=2

Notice the only LDC is on Jerry's dobro, and it's a KSM44 in figure eight pattern so the nulls on the sides keep the bleed from the stage from getting in.  Otherwise they're using high-quality SDC's for the guitar and fiddle what I would guess is Neumann KM105 for voice.  Please note that the pickup pattern on these mics is tighter than your typical LDC.
This means that the mic "hears" more of the intended input and helps diminish the amount of extraneous sound seeping into the mix.

That's all..


 
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: duane massey on November 22, 2012, 05:04:37 pm
IF what you have is your only option, your results will be limited. Definitely forego the auto-eq function, it is truly worthless. You don't need compression, gates, all the other bells and whistles, but you do need to spend a lot of time with the group and the system tweaking the various EQ's. I would start with the sub turned way down or off, set the system for best possible sound, bring up the sub, and only add as much as needed. Don't be afraid to do odd things with the channel EQ's, especially the instruments, as that's just about all you can do to differentiate between the vocals and the rest of the music. You also should experiment with the crossover point and the slopes, as well as setting the hi-pass on the sub higher than you might with other genres.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Shane O'Neal on November 23, 2012, 09:53:44 pm
I just find it strange that a band would invest in higher-end mics bordering on "studio" types and then plug them through a cheaper, limited feature mixer and no system EQ. Of course, after having played that type of music for a  major part of my living for over 30 years, I'd probably want to give them all picking and singing lessons as well......... ;D

Not knowing the players or having heard them, I can't really say that anything I've said to this point and from here on is going to be more than 50% correct, but IMO, the most professional and workable setup is to go with a VERY good pickup system and the associated pre-amp/processing from the same manufacturer for the guitar to hedge your bets along with the microphone, especially if the guitar takes solo rides.  Probably THE most common weak link in BG performance is the guitar solo.  Either the mic technique is not good or the rest of the band won't back off and let the guitar sing out.  Being able to bring up a direct-fed channel to support the mic or carry the solo is extremely desirable.  Better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.  Also, in certain "touchy" rooms/setups, it will give you an "out" for balanced performance........always remembering that running sound is the ultimate exercise in compromise, balancing what works with what sounds good.

There is a spectrum of staging/presentation which runs from multiple mics/inputs for each performer all the way to the single LDC technique.  Somewhere between those two extremes there's a happy median.  The mics you choose should serve the setup as much as possible.  My personal preference as a player is to have a good mic like a DPA mounted on the fiddle and mandolin, a good single LDC vocal mic or good, hyper-cardioid vocal mics/person and one or two good SDC's down for low-slung instruments like the banjo, guitar, dobro, etc.  Stand-up bass should have a high-quality transducer WITH a matching pre-amp or even a small bass amp with a balanced direct out. 

I'll look for some clips of various setups to append.  For now:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PpzEcyegQIQ

Single mic w/bass direct in.

More to follow.........

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=98jNS8MmEqw

Single vocal mic w/solo support mics low and bass direct or mounted mic. 

And for the finale:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYhlXdxbAXc&feature=autoplay&list=AL94UKMTqg-9D-_gdWlLpRfoETvIF6w9Dh&playnext=2

Notice the only LDC is on Jerry's dobro, and it's a KSM44 in figure eight pattern so the nulls on the sides keep the bleed from the stage from getting in.  Otherwise they're using high-quality SDC's for the guitar and fiddle what I would guess is Neumann KM105 for voice.  Please note that the pickup pattern on these mics is tighter than your typical LDC.
This means that the mic "hears" more of the intended input and helps diminish the amount of extraneous sound seeping into the mix.

That's all..

Thanks for the recommendations and video examples. In the last video it looks as though Jerry may be using a pickup as well.

As far as the high end microphones and lower end mixer. I believe it was just a case of upgrading one component at a time as resources allowed. The mixer is next on the list to be upgraded, and should happen soon. Can our Driverack be used to manually tune and ring out feedback? We have a 31 band eq that we pulled out when the DR was purchased. If we need to reinsert that in the chain, we can do that.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on November 23, 2012, 10:00:10 pm
Can our Driverack be used to manually tune and ring out feedback?

Theoretically.  But "mousing around" to implement the ringing out procedure I described is rather tedious.  A good quality old-fashioned analog unit with actual physical controls is much easier and quicker.  Peering at the small rather hard to read LCD display on the DRack is a PITA.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Shane O'Neal on November 24, 2012, 09:22:44 am
Theoretically.  But "mousing around" to implement the ringing out procedure I described is rather tedious.  A good quality old-fashioned analog unit with actual physical controls is much easier and quicker.  Peering at the small rather hard to read LCD display on the DRack is a PITA.

Other than the autoeq and feedback supression we are just using the DR for crossover. Are there any features we are overlooking that we should be using in our situation?

Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on November 24, 2012, 10:12:09 am
Other than the autoeq and feedback supression we are just using the DR for crossover. Are there any features we are overlooking that we should be using in our situation?

No.  The cross-over. system PEQ and any driver alignment delay are all I would recommend.  I dislike the user interface of the graphic EQ, the feedback suppression is  arguably a useless band-aid and anyone using the Auto-EQ should be summarily executed.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Tom Burgess on November 24, 2012, 10:51:06 am
No.  The cross-over. system PEQ and any driver alignment delay are all I would recommend.  I dislike the user interface of the graphic EQ, the feedback suppression is  arguably a useless band-aid and anyone using the Auto-EQ should be summarily executed.
lol... geez, that's a little harsh isn't it?

While I agree that trying to use the auto-eq function of the DRPA+ as instructed in the manual will typically yield questionable results (to put it nicely), I disagree about it not being a useful tool. 

To the OP, before you give up on the DRPA+, go to the dbxpro.com user forums and check out the extensive information on more effective ways to utilize it, there are definitely better ways to make it work.  I've had great luck employing several of the methods outlined there.  Also, which Soundcraft mixer are you using?  (Sorry if I missed it earlier)
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on November 24, 2012, 02:19:36 pm
lol... geez, that's a little harsh isn't it?

While I agree that trying to use the auto-eq function of the DRPA+ as instructed in the manual will typically yield questionable results (to put it nicely), I disagree about it not being a useful tool. 

To the OP, before you give up on the DRPA+, go to the dbxpro.com user forums and check out the extensive information on more effective ways to utilize it, there are definitely better ways to make it work.  I've had great luck employing several of the methods outlined there.  Also, which Soundcraft mixer are you using?  (Sorry if I missed it earlier)

Not harsh at all.  By the time you know enough to make the darned thing work, you've learned how to do a better job without it.  It is not capable, even in the hands of an experienced user, of doing a better job than a good tech.  The amount of time and effort spent to get enough good samples to make it even approach what you can do with the "boost until it rings, then cut" method of ringing things out with a graphic (or parametric, preferably) is excessive and sometimes is not possible due to time constraints or the venue (when open to the public pre-show like a restaurant/bar/grill, etc) not needing the distraction of someone working the room.

Unless you're just a DJ doing playback with no live sound inputs, the Auto-EQ is a waste of space/time.  One does not have to have a golden ear, or indeed, any ear at all to ascertain when a system is pushed into low-level feedback to identify the "hot" frequencies.  And since you've already got your hand on the slider governing the offending frequency, there's nothing else to know.

How much time do you have to spend with your Auto-EQ to get it to really work?  And what do  you do when the whole sonic scenario changes with the addition of an audience and the accompanying temperature and humidity changes?  You can't run the Auto-EQ again whereas if you've learned the simple DIY GEQ method you can make adjustments and tweaks if conditions dictate.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: duane massey on November 24, 2012, 06:20:21 pm
I agree with Dick on the auto-EQ, but I mildly disagree with the usefulness of the FBX section. IF it is used properly it can be useful, but disregard the concept of the "live" filters. If you use only fixed filters it's really just a chain of parametrics, and you don't have to use all of them. I don't use this function often, but I do use it for Karaoke bars.
And how about that sub-harmonic thingy?
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Shane O'Neal on November 24, 2012, 10:35:01 pm
lol... geez, that's a little harsh isn't it?

While I agree that trying to use the auto-eq function of the DRPA+ as instructed in the manual will typically yield questionable results (to put it nicely), I disagree about it not being a useful tool. 

To the OP, before you give up on the DRPA+, go to the dbxpro.com user forums and check out the extensive information on more effective ways to utilize it, there are definitely better ways to make it work.  I've had great luck employing several of the methods outlined there.  Also, which Soundcraft mixer are you using?  (Sorry if I missed it earlier)

Thanks for the dbxpro tip.
The mixer is a Soundcraft E12
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Tom Burgess on November 27, 2012, 01:01:39 pm
Not harsh at all.  By the time you know enough to make the darned thing work, you've learned how to do a better job without it.  It is not capable, even in the hands of an experienced user, of doing a better job than a good tech.  The amount of time and effort spent to get enough good samples to make it even approach what you can do with the "boost until it rings, then cut" method of ringing things out with a graphic (or parametric, preferably) is excessive and sometimes is not possible due to time constraints or the venue (when open to the public pre-show like a restaurant/bar/grill, etc) not needing the distraction of someone working the room.

Unless you're just a DJ doing playback with no live sound inputs, the Auto-EQ is a waste of space/time.  One does not have to have a golden ear, or indeed, any ear at all to ascertain when a system is pushed into low-level feedback to identify the "hot" frequencies.  And since you've already got your hand on the slider governing the offending frequency, there's nothing else to know.

How much time do you have to spend with your Auto-EQ to get it to really work?  And what do  you do when the whole sonic scenario changes with the addition of an audience and the accompanying temperature and humidity changes?  You can't run the Auto-EQ again whereas if you've learned the simple DIY GEQ method you can make adjustments and tweaks if conditions dictate.
No arguments from me about this IF you have an experienced operator to man the con.  Most of my work these days is in a retail music store environment and I have several clients that are definitely not experienced operators.  As an example... 

This one fellow is a pretty talented singer / frontman and although he's in his 30's he's new to the music entertainment biz and is concentrating full time on furthering his craft as a performer.  When he does gigs with a full band the production is either provided by the venue or hired out.  However, when he does "acoustic" gigs it consists of him and somtimes another guitarist / vocalist.  He needed a small rig that no matter where he sets up he can count on it to sound decent at worst with an absolute minimum amount of variables.  I used a DRPX to find flat for his powered speakers, set up the exact vocal mics he uses to help locate the most likely feedback points, and left a few of the live filters available for emergency feedback killers.  Is it perfect sound?  Nope, but it's pretty darn good and as close to foolproof as I can make it for someone that is just learning which end of the mic cable to plug in.  :)
 
Thanks for the dbxpro tip.
The mixer is a Soundcraft E12
You're welcome... hope you don't mind reading and have some time on your hands to do so! 
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on November 27, 2012, 01:13:59 pm
No arguments from me about this IF you have an experienced operator to man the con.  Most of my work these days is in a retail music store environment and I have several clients that are definitely not experienced operators.  As an example... 

This one fellow is a pretty talented singer / frontman and although he's in his 30's he's new to the music entertainment biz and is concentrating full time on furthering his craft as a performer.  When he does gigs with a full band the production is either provided by the venue or hired out.  However, when he does "acoustic" gigs it consists of him and somtimes another guitarist / vocalist.  He needed a small rig that no matter where he sets up he can count on it to sound decent at worst with an absolute minimum amount of variables.  I used a DRPX to find flat for his powered speakers, set up the exact vocal mics he uses to help locate the most likely feedback points, and left a few of the live filters available for emergency feedback killers.  Is it perfect sound?  Nope, but it's pretty darn good and as close to foolproof as I can make it for someone that is just learning which end of the mic cable to plug in.  :)
 You're welcome... hope you don't mind reading and have some time on your hands to do so!

And I could show him how to do the same thing without spending extra bucks on excess capacity of questionable use.  AND he'd be able to set the system up in any room and have it good for the room.  But it's my job to help people learn to help themselves, not to sell them stuff.

To paraphrase an old adage:

"Teach a man to fish and he can feed himself.  Keep him ignorant and you can sell him fish forever."

Shane....

If you want to know how to use the gear you already have to do what you need, shoot me a PM and I'll send you a .doc file with the procedure.  It does not require a golden ear or even much experience.  If it doesn't work for you, then you can go out and buy more gear.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Tom Burgess on November 27, 2012, 04:10:27 pm
And I could show him how to do the same thing without spending extra bucks on excess capacity of questionable use.  AND he'd be able to set the system up in any room and have it good for the room. 
Apparently I was too vague with this part of my post:
Quote
...and is concentrating full time on furthering his craft as a performer.
He has neither the desire nor the intent to learn the "sound" end of the biz, he's got his hands full as it is thus he wanted something to plug and go.
But it's my job to help people learn to help themselves, not to sell them stuff.
Which is exactly what I did...  I took a complete newb and got him started with something that works every time, when or if he wants to learn more I'll be happy to teach him more.
To paraphrase an old adage:

"Teach a man to fish and he can feed himself.  Keep him ignorant and you can sell him fish forever."
Not quite sure where you're going with this train of thought but it sure as hell doesn't apply to me.  Of course you don't know me from a hole in the wall so you wouldn't know how many hours I've spent with this guy on my own time and my own dime since, as it turns out, he's not only a customer but a friend as well.  So, if you don't mind, please don't make assumptions like this about me and I won't make similarly rash assumptions about you, fair enough?

Shane - my apologies for this thread getting somewhat derailed, I'll try to not clutter it further, hope everything goes well with your rig.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on November 27, 2012, 04:35:14 pm
Apparently I was too vague with this part of my post:He has neither the desire nor the intent to learn the "sound" end of the biz, he's got his hands full as it is thus he wanted something to plug and go.Which is exactly what I did...  I took a complete newb and got him started with something that works every time, when or if he wants to learn more I'll be happy to teach him more.Not quite sure where you're going with this train of thought but it sure as hell doesn't apply to me.  Of course you don't know me from a hole in the wall so you wouldn't know how many hours I've spent with this guy on my own time and my own dime since, as it turns out, he's not only a customer but a friend as well.  So, if you don't mind, please don't make assumptions like this about me and I won't make similarly rash assumptions about you, fair enough?

Shane - my apologies for this thread getting somewhat derailed, I'll try to not clutter it further, hope everything goes well with your rig.

Point taken.  You're correct that it's just too easy to impute intent or position from a single post and we should be more circumspect.

My two main issues/points here are:

1.  There is no "one adjustment fits all" setting on ANY piece of gear which allows one to go into a variety of rooms or situations which will be of use every time.  You acknowledged this, I believe, in your post and stated that you left a couple of floating filters to take care of any anomalies.  That is well and good, but:

2.  It takes very little time and no steep learning curve to learn how to quickly ring out a system in a room.  And the few minutes it takes means that the system is optimized for that room on that particular job.  Certainly better than a "shotgun setting with  2 dynamic filters".

Now in the case of your friend, if he's not interested in getting the best sound every time and is satisfied with an averaged, lowest-common denominator, no-work-involved approach, then I hope he doesn't approach his music in the same way.

As an added note so we can get to know each other a bit better, my approach and opinions come from a 35+ year career as a performer/professional musician.  I've been full-time at sound for the past 12 years, having worked in both music and sound at the same time for a dozen years before that.  That doesn't mean I know it all, or even know very much.  But I'm always convinced that if I can learn how to do it, anyone can......if they care about their product.  If I wanted a machine to do all the work, I guess I would have been a DJ.

DR
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Jared Koopman on November 28, 2012, 12:27:39 pm
Point taken.  You're correct that it's just too easy to impute intent or position from a single post and we should be more circumspect.


2.  It takes very little time and no steep learning curve to learn how to quickly ring out a system in a room.  And the few minutes it takes means that the system is optimized for that room on that particular job.  Certainly better than a "shotgun setting with  2 dynamic filters".



This is something that I would love someone to teach me to do. I understand the basics of what is going on but since I have never done it myself and me being a hands on learning type of guy, I would love someone to walk me through it. Do you know of any written explanation of this process that I could read up on?

Jared
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Tim McCulloch on November 28, 2012, 01:05:23 pm
This is something that I would love someone to teach me to do. I understand the basics of what is going on but since I have never done it myself and me being a hands on learning type of guy, I would love someone to walk me through it. Do you know of any written explanation of this process that I could read up on?

Jared

Use the search tool provided on this page (upper right corner) and use "Dick Rees" as the terms.  Dick just posted an exhaustive "how to" on this very topic.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on November 28, 2012, 01:25:05 pm
Use the search tool provided on this page (upper right corner) and use "Dick Rees" as the terms.  Dick just posted an exhaustive "how to" on this very topic.

Yeah.  I'm plumb wore out.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Jared Koopman on November 28, 2012, 01:40:37 pm
Yeah.  I'm plumb wore out.

Run out of Wheaties?  :)
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: David Morison on November 28, 2012, 02:34:48 pm
Use the search tool provided on this page (upper right corner) and use "Dick Rees" as the terms.  Dick just posted an exhaustive "how to" on this very topic.

I'm feeling nice...
Jared - go to the message linked in this:

I've written the following procedure so many times that I should really put it in a .doc so I can just paste it in.  There are some YouTube videos, but I find something wrong or "fuzzy" in every one I've looked at and so do not link to them.  But there are quite a few.

Cheers,
David.
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Jared Koopman on November 28, 2012, 02:59:21 pm
I'm feeling nice...
Jared - go to the message linked in this:

Cheers,
David.

Thanks Dave! :)

If I may ask, does that same procedure apply to ringing out monitors (after properly positioning mics and monitors of course) ?
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: David Morison on November 29, 2012, 07:46:29 am
Thanks Dave

Oi! There's a D on the end of it!  >:(
Not feeling so nice now...

Quote
If I may ask, does that same procedure apply to ringing out monitors (after properly positioning mics and monitors of course) ?

You can ask....
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: g'bye, Dick Rees on November 29, 2012, 09:41:36 am
Thanks Dave! :)

If I may ask, does that same procedure apply to ringing out monitors (after properly positioning mics and monitors of course) ?

Why not?
Title: Re: "P popping" and alternate drive rack configuration
Post by: Jared Koopman on November 29, 2012, 11:19:19 am
Oi! There's a D on the end of it!  >:(
Not feeling so nice now...

You can ask....

Sorry I have a brother named David that goes by Dave...just habit.

My apologies David.