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What Do You Want to Know About Live Sound But Are Too Afraid To Ask? Dynamic Microphones
Old 13th August 2015
  #211
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loujudson's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jetam View Post
If your mixer isn't clipping, it's good.
You want to have most of the needed gain in the first stage, otherwise you'll be also amplifying the noise of all the previous stages. If you can get the level low enough that it isn't clipping without using a pad, it's great. You'll certainly get a lot more level from a wireless receiver than from a dynamic microphone.
I think Jetam is wrong - I have been using wired and wireless mics for years, and the best way is to get the wireless to match the level of the wired. Since you have the same kind of both, you can make the wireless match the handheld easily. Set the transmitter output by the meter on the receiver, and the receiver's output to match the wited mic into the mixer.

If some day you get to work with a sound person who knows what they are doing, they'll be happy to find that your beta 58 sounds like a beta 58 even as a wireless.
Old 13th August 2015
  #212
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loujudson View Post
I think Jetam is wrong - I have been using wired and wireless mics for years, and the best way is to get the wireless to match the level of the wired. Since you have the same kind of both, you can make the wireless match the handheld easily. Set the transmitter output by the meter on the receiver, and the receiver's output to match the wited mic into the mixer.

If some day you get to work with a sound person who knows what they are doing, they'll be happy to find that your beta 58 sounds like a beta 58 even as a wireless.
You can certainly do this and it might be useful if you have to match a lot of mics, but from a technical point of view, it's inferior. You're adding unnecessary attenuation and gain which add noise and nonlinearities from the preamp.
FWIW I have also been using wired and wireless mics for years and work with SKM5000s, SK50s and SKM2000s almost every day.
Old 13th August 2015
  #213
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loujudson's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jetam View Post
You can certainly do this and it might be useful if you have to match a lot of mics, but from a technical point of view, it's inferior. You're adding unnecessary attenuation and gain which add noise and nonlinearities from the preamp.
FWIW I have also been using wired and wireless mics for years and work with SKM5000s, SK50s and SKM2000s almost every day.
We can agree to disagree if you like. I think your advice is bad for a newbie, though. I am talking a obout having the preamp right in the sweet, quietest level, and gain matching the WL internally to match. That is best practice in live sound!

But then I prefer Sennheiser over Shure or any other kind that I can afford.

Perhaps the OP can let us know which method works for them best? Dentman?

Last edited by loujudson; 13th August 2015 at 07:16 PM..
Old 13th August 2015
  #214
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loujudson View Post
But then I prefer Sennheiser over Shure or any other kind that I can afford.
We can certainly agree on that.
Old 13th August 2015
  #215
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loujudson's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jetam View Post
We can certainly agree on that.
Great! One other thing, I have found that if you adjust the WL system for maximum level, it can overload the board input unexpectedly at times. I'd rather be safe from that than have the timiest advantage in minor hiss!

Also, I usually leave the mics set for -10 to prevent overload of the transmitter input which can happen also unexpectedly. But I am using them on many different people and voices, whereas dentman has onloy the two voices consistently.

I'd also like to hear from Dentman how useful all this is!
Old 13th August 2015
  #216
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Thanks both of you, for your thoughts. I am now even more confused though! I've already experimented with both approaches and can't really hear any difference. Perhaps a few more opinions would be useful.
Old 13th August 2015
  #217
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loujudson's Avatar
Here is one reason for my approach: If the levels are matched, and a wireless goes down (batteries or any other reason) you can plug in your wired mic and not have to change anything. I've learned this the hard way more than once!

Other people's opinions and methods are welcome, of course!
Old 13th August 2015
  #218
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loujudson View Post
Here is one reason for my approach: If the levels are matched, and a wireless goes down (batteries or any other reason) you can plug in your wired mic and not have to change anything. I've learned this the hard way more than once!

Other people's opinions and methods are welcome, of course!
That certainly makes good sense to me, that's what I was originally hoping for when setting the mics up. But only if it is consistent with best practice.
Old 13th August 2015
  #219
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Not quite what yall were asking, but I'm a big fan of putting a Radial Gold Digger mic switcher between wireless mics and the desk. Great for seamless switching between wireless mics, and I generally try to level match my wireless to a wired mic for extra spare capability.
Old 14th August 2015
  #220
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Here's what I'd like to ask...

Currently, I have a powered mixer and I'd like to understand a little bit more about setting the faders.

I have learnt a fair bit about setting the gain of each channel. But I'd like to know how to set the channel faders in relation to the power amp faders.

Thanks.
Old 14th August 2015
  #221
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yamaholic View Post
Here's what I'd like to ask...

Currently, I have a powered mixer and I'd like to understand a little bit more about setting the faders.

I have learnt a fair bit about setting the gain of each channel. But I'd like to know how to set the channel faders in relation to the power amp faders.

Thanks.
There is no one absolutely right answer for this, but I'll have a stab at it.

The subject you are looking at is gain structure, and there are a few different things you need to achieve, and a few different ways to go about it.

First thing to understand is that generally, amplifiers always amplify by the same amount, even if the volume is turned down, the volume control on the front of the amp basically allows you to turn the signal down before it goes into the amp, which can achieve a couple of different things, but basically means that you need to send a hotter signal from the desk to the amp to get a specific output level.

you say you have learned about setting gains, I'm assuming that you've been taught PFL (solo) the channel, and set the gain so that its around 0db on the meters? its a perfectly valid way of working, and ensures that you always have a decent signal/noise ratio, whilst keeping headroom to deal with transients.

You may have noticed on the channel faders, the numbering isn't linear, and has an area around the 0db mark where relatively fine adjustments can be made, with coarser adjustments towards the very top and bottom of the fader. Ideally you are going to want to keep the channel and main out faders somewhere close to this high-resolution area in order to give yourself maximum control and let you make subtle tweaks.

So with all your faders at a sensible position around 0db, and the main out of the desk metering around 0db as well, and the attenuators at the amps set to 0 (so no attenuation) you may find the sound is way too loud or too quiet. if its too quiet then you can either turn the master fader up (sending more signal to the amps, but reducing headroom), or bring more amps and speakers. If on the other hand, if it is too loud, you can turn the attenuators on the amp down until they you are getting the desired sound level out of the speakers.

tl;dr the amp attenuators let you keep the faders in the 'sweet spot' around 0db, whilst being able to control the overall volume of a system,
Old 14th August 2015
  #222
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It may depend on specifically which mixer/amp you are talking about ... But in big general terms you should have the channel faders up higher than the power amp faders ( when possible). Again generally you want to create gain earlier in the chain rather than later. But as long as you are not having distortion or excessive noise in the system you don't have much of a problem if you do it backwards.
Old 23rd August 2015
  #223
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active/passive additions

ADMIN: I already posted this question to the main board, so please toss this if I am breaking the rules.

Yes, N00b here. Cursing the day I opted for an active system because its SO EASY. I didn't learn a damn thing because its all plug and play. I am looking forward to the day something happens to one of my speakers so I have a good reason to take it apart and fix it.

Anyways.... I am providing sound for a 4 day party, 24 hours a day, on a houseboat. (Please hold your comments about the amount of gear I am using for a houseboat:-) I have used my existing system on the same boat, and it needs a little more low end, this is why I am adding the passive subwoofers) The music will be all electronic.

I am trying to add (2) passive subs and (2) passive booth monitors to my active system.


Current Setup:
(2) JBL PRX725 Active full range dual 15" mains
(2) JBL PRX718XLF Active 18" Subwoofers
Allen & Heath Zed 10 PA mixer
Denon DN-x500 DJ mixer
DBX Driverack PA+

Gear I am attempting to add:
(2) Sonic 18E passive 18" folded subwoofers
Mackie FR 2600 amplifier
(2) Peavey PR15 (booth monitors)
Crown CE1000 Amplifier

I am not sure how to add these additional components. Any wiring diagrams would be greatly appreciated!!!
Old 23rd August 2015
  #224
Gear Nut
Just posted a reply (though not an answer!) in the other thread......
Old 27th August 2015
  #225
Gear Head
How do the meteres on the sound desk translate to real life sound?

In other words if on ArrayCalc I work out dispersion at 7dbu what level on our Yamaha LS9 output meter would represent that?
Old 27th August 2015
  #226
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0dbu is a known electrical signal level of 0.77v, this is the equivalent to 0db on the meters of most traditional analogue desks. there is no 1:1 mapping between DBFS (digital metering with 0 at the top and negatives below) as it ultimately depends on the headroom of the system. Usually, the metering on a desk is designed so that the last green LED on the meterbridge approximately represents 0dbu (but not always).

this graph helps explain the different levels (stolen from another post on here, I claim no credit)



so, for your example, +7dbu would be the equivalent to -14 on an LS9 (which uses 24 bit sampling), or the first yellow LED of the main meters illuminating, or the third LED on the channel meters.
Old 27th August 2015
  #227
Gear Head
Quote:
Originally Posted by azlan121 View Post
0dbu is a known electrical signal level of 0.77v, this is the equivalent to 0db on the meters of most traditional analogue desks. there is no 1:1 mapping between DBFS (digital metering with 0 at the top and negatives below) as it ultimately depends on the headroom of the system. Usually, the metering on a desk is designed so that the last green LED on the meterbridge approximately represents 0dbu (but not always).

this graph helps explain the different levels (stolen from another post on here, I claim no credit)

so, for your example, +7dbu would be the equivalent to -14 on an LS9 (which uses 24 bit sampling), or the first yellow LED of the main meters illuminating, or the third LED on the channel meters.
Thanks for the graph and explanation
Old 10th September 2015
  #228
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mojo filters's Avatar
 

Just wanted to add a note of thanks for posting that excellent diagram!

I had a much older and cruder representation I got from PSW years ago, but it's nice to get some extra dB metrics that tend to be useful working in digital - for consoles, dsp etc.

I hope the author doesn't mind my using it for training and educational purposes? I Googled him but couldn't find contact details. I've already laminated an A5 print and stuck it to the lid of my work toolbox - whilst it's hardly essential for the typical dreary corporate AV, it's nice to have "just in case".

So far the only reaction I've had from colleagues is "where's unity?" I blame the old Mackie ads and promo materials...

I also have a question that my supposedly skilled video colleagues couldn't answer - the SMTPE dBFS scale seems very different from the others, does that refer to the level of the actual code generated for sync purposes, or is it the actual amplitude level of audio synchronized via SMTPE? (Apologies for the clumsy language, I have little interest and skill in the video realm - other than having successfully navigated away from it wherever possible, due to a potentially career-stalling lack of interest in the medium).
Old 10th September 2015
  #229
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Umm, well first off, SMPTE is a standards organization, there are various different SMPTE standards, not just the timecode format (in the same way we have iso standards, or bs/en standards in the uk).

As far as i know, the standard is simply a set of guidelines for nominal and peak audio levels, remembering that in the world of post producion, rules are set about average and peak volume levels over time, based on the voltages represented in their scale. Cinema's, screening rooms and post suites will normally be calibrated so that a certain signal level of pink noise translates to a known spl level in the room.
Old 10th September 2015
  #230
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mojo filters's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by azlan121 View Post
Umm, well first off, SMPTE is a standards organization, there are various different SMPTE standards, not just the timecode format (in the same way we have iso standards, or bs/en standards in the uk).

As far as i know, the standard is simply a set of guidelines for nominal and peak audio levels, remembering that in the world of. post producion, rules are set about average and peak volume levels over time, based on the voltages represented in their scale. Cinema's, screening rooms and post suites will normally be calibrated so that a certain signal level of pink noise translates to a known spl level in the room.
That makes sense, though really not my area of expertise. From your description it sounds like that particular dB scale is mostly used in relation to a measured benchmark, with specific relevance to each environment where such measurements are taken.

Having had a brief look at the SMPTE Wikipedia page, I see why the answer to my original question is much more complex than I realized. Thank you for your explanation.
Old 10th September 2015
  #231
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Yeh, from my (limited) understanding, basically, the smpte standard utilizes the fact that the relationship between dbfs and dbu/dbv is essentially arbitrary (you could set any digital level to any voltage output in theory), to shift the scale of volume, by shifting the 0db point slightly further down the dbfs scale (so a smaller digital value is required to output 0.77v), you gain slightly more headroom compared to the ebu standard. I believe the roots of this are in the idea of running +4dbu as the nominal level in some pro-grade equipment (0dbvu), rather than 0dbu.
Old 13th November 2015
  #232
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Finding the right live vocal mic

Thanks for this forum for neophytes. I'm a singer songwriter in a country rock band. The band isn't super loud but we play many small clubs many with questionable PAs. Most times the instruments are not mic'ed. I have been using a Beta 58 for years but am wondering if there's another mic or mics out there that might be better for me to cut through the mix. I am not a powerful singer. So, yes, for sure the band needs to play at a sound level to match me but I am looking to cover all the bases. It seems like the Beta 58 in small club environments feeds back easily when the levels are turned up. Like it's almost too hot for the lower end PA's that might be a simple pari of powered speakers. Any ideas?
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