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My new mobile rig. Studio Monitors
Old 29th August 2007
  #1
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Graham Tobias's Avatar
 

Cool My new mobile rig.

Hey everyone. I'm building a new rig and it's nearly ready to put together. I designed and had a custom case built by Jan-Al that holds everything. It's a fully shockmounted case with 12 rack spaces, a mixer top (holds my control surface), a ratcheting lid with my monitor mounted to the inside, and a shockmounted horizontal space for my G5 at the bottom. The case is currently being shipped to me. Here are the plans we put together:




The case will contain my G5, monitor, mackie universal control, digi003, digimax LT, 2x Vintech 1073i, Central Station, manley DI, trs to db25 bay, 2x radial 8 channel mic splitters and all the wiring and panels and such. Future additions may include an API A2D and a compressor or 2. I'll take pics when the rack gets here and when I put it all together. I have not yet purchased the majority of the gear listed above. If anyone has any opinions on changes I should make please let me know. I'm pretty excited.
Old 29th August 2007
  #2
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Remoteness's Avatar
Sweet!

Keep us posted when it come in...

Take some pictures for us!
Old 12th September 2007
  #3
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Graham Tobias's Avatar
 

cases come tomorrow!

I'm excited. The case arrives tomorrow.
Old 12th September 2007
  #4
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Graham Tobias's Avatar
 

angry..

and now instead of being excited I'm rip****. Oh am I angry. It's hard to express it on the internet fuuck fuuck tutt . Oh the hassle I had to go through just to get the cases to me today... the day before I move across the country. I was supposed to have it all weeks ago, but no they forgot to order a part, when it came they got the wrong part.. still don't have the part.. anyways I get the big case today (Still no clue why the custom pelican case hasn't showed up yet) and I look at the case and realize that a ton of things aren't to spec. The latches aren't key-lockable like I specified, the hubbel connector on the outside and powerstrip on the inside aren't there. The partition that goes between the monitor and the control surface wasn't there. I'm rather disappointed. I'm more than rather disappointed. Devastated. I basically paid $2000 to be out of work for 2 months because I'll have to fly back to massachusetts and deal with everything. Now I'm going to have to move the majority of my gear into my parents house outside boston. fun fun. They're as excited as I am. Yeah basically I can't express enough how pissed off I am that they can't even look at the spec sheet and look at the case and make sure everything is right before they send it to me. With all of the outrageous shipping costs they've had to pay to deal with this case I don't think they're making any money off of it. Unfortunately I won't be making any money off of it either for at least 2 months.

So I'll post again when I find out what they're going to do but at this current time I cannot recommend Jan-Al cases to anyone. It's become a huge hassle, put me out of work for too long, and really ****ed up my move, along with adding a ton more stress and more things to deal with. When I pay a custom case company a large sum of money, give them every last detail and specification, including specified dates of delivery, months beforehand, I expect everything to be finished exactly to spec and in my hands when asked for. This fiasco is not what I expected. I'd rather be relaxing before my move than playing yet another game of angry phone tag.

So thanks a lot Jan-Al. Way to ruin my move.
Old 12th September 2007
  #5
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jordanh's Avatar
 

I'm really sorry to hear that man...it looked like it should have went sweet and smooth...that said, when you get it worked out, I would love to see pictures!
Old 12th September 2007
  #6
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Remoteness's Avatar
Man, that sucks big time.

When we have a custom order placed, I do my best to have them sign off on the drawings or description...

Was that addressed?

I trust they will (must) do the right thing by you.

Has anyone from Jan-Al explained why this has occured?
Old 12th September 2007
  #7
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Graham Tobias's Avatar
 

We made drawings, went over all the specs for the hardware, everything.... I'm waiting for them to call me back to find out what they're going to do. I've been waiting for almost 2 hours... I'm not exactly sure where in the line of production it went wrong. The only explanation I can imagine is SERIOUS human error. A frightening amount of human error. I cannot understand how an established company with such an insane list of clients could mess up this badly. In terms of what I expect them to do... I expect them to arrange for a shipping company to pick up the case, repair it, send it back, and, because of the stress, time wasting and forced 2 month hiatus from work,--I don't really want to pay full price for this. I'd be satisfied if the case is "on the house." I mean all the case represents to me right now is a massive loss of money. It really sucks for them too... to replace all of the latches and add the hubbel and power strip probably means they'll have to refoam the entire interior of the case. That's a ton of labor and a ton of foam cutting.
Old 12th September 2007
  #8
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It's getting worked out... They seem to be working pretty hard to figure it all out. It's a rather unfortunate occurence for both myself and Jan-Al. I can imagine that my stress and anxiety over the whole ordeal is tenfold at Jan-Al. Aside from the incorrect parts and missing features, I do have to say the case is pretty awesome. I'm trying to put together a laptop rig to last me until november. Now I get to sit back and wait to see what happens.
Old 13th September 2007
  #9
LX3
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LX3's Avatar
 

Wow, I feel for you. I'm re-working my rig right now, and it's true, things that should be straightforward (order something, it shows up, get on with it) frequently don't work out that way... which, when you're on a deadline, is a real pain.

e.g. I recently ordered a Neumann KMS105, a week before a jazz gig I especially wanted it for. How much simpler could it get? Was assured the mic would be with my local dealer Wed (gig Fri). Pay special courier charge to make sure of it. Ring on Wed to check it's in... told it hasn't made it, but would definitely be there in their delivery on Thursday (and they'll refund the courier charge). Ring Thursday... told that they're sorry, but the reason it hasn't shown up is that their "head office" never actually ordered it from the distributor! Deepest apologies. And no, there's no way they can get Sennheiser UK to deliver it to me in time for soundcheck the next day. How helpful.

I ring every dealer I can think of that keeps any stock of Neumanns. Nothing. (although they'll all order me one).

So I have to spend four hours that evening, when I should be preparing for the gig, rushing 20 miles across to the opposite side of London, to the only rental company that has any, before they close for the night. (I'm not a regular customer of theirs, so no, they won't deliver, and they need a copy of my passport etc...). I have to have a 105, because I put it in the spec, and the artist is expecting a Neumann for the female vocals. It costs me £30 to rent.

Then on my way home, I drop in at a central London dealer (it's 8pm now) to pick up another bit of kit I've ordered, and guess what? They've got a brand new KMS105 in stock, in my preferred nickel finish. At the same price as the dealer I ordered with. But of course, I already have the rented one in my bag.

And the final kicker? You'll love this. I discover when I arrive at the gig the next day that the female guest vocalist can't make it!

Grab four hours sleep after getting in from the show, then get up and spend another two hours racing across town to get to the rental co before they shut (early on a Saturday). All so I can return a rented mic that I didn't use.

No matter how well-prepared you are, stuff can happen that's simply beyond your control. I've learned to expect it now, you can kind of smell it coming.. which is when I try to have some vague backup plan, just in case.

I know, this doesn't help you much right now. All I'm saying is, I feel your pain! Doesn't matter how clearly you explain things, how accurate your drawings, how thorough and unambiguous a specification document you hand them, some half-wit can always screw it up for you

But you still have to do all that stuff, if only to prove who's screw up it is. Thankfully it sounds like you've avoided that particular argument. Good work. Bet you're glad you did those drawings.

Sorry, yet again, a longer post than I meant!

Paul
Old 13th September 2007
  #10
LX3
Lives for gear
 
LX3's Avatar
 

By the way, how heavy is this unit going to be when it's all done? I assume you have an assistant with you on your gigs.

I was thinking about this myself after a couple of slightly harrowing load-ins, and I'm so glad my rig breaks down into manageable cases (nothing bigger than 8U)... because there's hardly a gig in London that doesn't involve at least two flights of stairs.
Old 13th September 2007
  #11
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Graham Tobias View Post
It's getting worked out... They seem to be working pretty hard to figure it all out. It's a rather unfortunate occurence for both myself and Jan-Al. I can imagine that my stress and anxiety over the whole ordeal is tenfold at Jan-Al. Aside from the incorrect parts and missing features, I do have to say the case is pretty awesome. I'm trying to put together a laptop rig to last me until november. Now I get to sit back and wait to see what happens.
I hope you don't mind, but I took it upon myself to sent Jan-Al an email many hours ago.
I contacted the president, owner and designer asking them to make sure they took care of you and such.
After the fact, I thought I should have asked you first, but I got so moved by your problem, I had to do something about it.

I hope my email helped your situation.
Old 13th September 2007
  #12
Gear Maniac
 
SixAndChange's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Remoteness View Post
I hope you don't mind, but I took it upon myself to sent Jan-Al an email many hours ago.
I contacted the president, owner and designer asking them to make sure they took care of you and such.
After the fact, I thought I should have asked you first, but I got so moved by your problem, I had to do something about it.

I hope my email helped your situation.
Steve also sent a text message to God, and he'll be imparting good fortune into your future!

Hahah, thats awesome Steve, what more could we ask for out of a moderator!
Old 27th October 2007
  #13
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Well, it's been some time now and I was wondering how everything turned out for you my man?

Knowing that Jan-Al is a pro outfit I bet they did their best to resolve your issues.

As you know, custom work needs clear and direct information.
In any event, you had legitimate problems that needed to be dealt with.

I know Muffie at Jan-Al took full responsibility for this situation.
With that said, I trust they did the right thing by you.

Even the best companies have off days my GS friend...
They should have the opportunity to redeem themselves.
I'm sure they did the right thing -- If not let us know.

All the best to you and yours!
Old 27th October 2007
  #14
Gear Addict
 

Wow, Steve, that was INCREDIBLY kind of you.

I hope the situation has been worked out!
Old 27th October 2007
  #15
Lives for gear
 

Wow Steve... Nice move.

JanAl is a great company and they make some really awesome custom cases. Whenever I see great case work from rental companies, when I check the label, it almost always says Jan Al on it. They've got a great PM5D case with a keyboard drawer in it... heh

Along the same lines, this is another case that JanAl made for a colleague/client of mine:

New Page 1

Bascially, dual monitors on the lid, space for a Tascam FW-1884 underneath. I think there were 12 (or was it 16?) spaces for gear that included a UPS, a big rackmount computer, a bit of outboard, etc... There was also a passthrough for cables right behind the FW1884. The client then put a patch pannel on the back of the rack so it was a completely easy interface to any rig. It is a pretty slick setup.

--Ben
Old 28th October 2007
  #16
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big country's Avatar
 



wow thats a cool design

I would have never thought of building something like that
Old 28th October 2007
  #17
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by big country View Post


wow thats a cool design

I would have never thought of building something like that

Yeah, I thought of something like that...

Then I saw a number of video packages just like that.

Very cool stuff for sure!
Old 28th October 2007
  #18
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
So, is there a Graham Tobias in the house?

How did everything go with Jan-Al?

...And, thanks for the kind words fellas, but I had to do it; I could not let that slide without a word or three.
Old 28th October 2007
  #19
Gear Addict
 
Graham Tobias's Avatar
 

My case is back in the shop right now and they're taking care of it. They've been taking good care of me and making sure to get everything right. The case should be all done by thanksgiving so I can ship it when I'm home from washington. My case looks a whole lot like the picture of the dual monitor one. The slight differences are that mine has a foamed compartment to hold a G5 at the bottom, and there's only one monitor. So yeah everything's going well. Thanks again for your help Steve. It's greatly appreciated. I have a question too..... how do you usually go about shipping monitors? I plan to send them in the styrofoam and cardboard boxes that they came in.
Old 28th October 2007
  #20
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Quote:
...how do you usually go about shipping monitors? I plan to send them in the styrofoam and cardboard boxes that they came in.
Are you talking about a one time thing or for everyday use?

If it's a one time thing the way they were origanally send should be fine, but I always place that container in another box with bubble wrap for extra measure.
Old 28th October 2007
  #21
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big country's Avatar
 



the speaker holders act as the cover for the box
the speakers fit in a drawer after the computer is pulled out

originally I was going to mount the monitor under the lid but opted not to
Old 28th October 2007
  #22
Gear Addict
 
Graham Tobias's Avatar
 

It's going to be 2 times a year at the least.

Woooo I've been having such a good weekend... A song I recorded got nominated for an independent music award. Always good news.
Old 25th November 2007
  #23
Gear Addict
 
Graham Tobias's Avatar
 

So it's time for an update... I got the case back after repairs.. and they still haven't attached the monitor mount... they didn't put in the missing rivet... they forgot to send me the partition.. gave me pad-lockable latches instead of key-lockable and the BIG disappointment... I put my G5 in the case and realize they didn't do the foam right and there's over an inch of open space for it to move around...

Aside from that it's slowly coming together, and the pelican case I had them foam for me to hold mics came out pretty well.

I haven't purchased the splits and pres for the rack yet.

pics:
Attached Thumbnails
My new mobile rig.-case.jpg   My new mobile rig.-mcase.jpg   My new mobile rig.-g5error.jpg  
Old 28th November 2007
  #24
Gear Addict
 
Graham Tobias's Avatar
 

They're sending me all these tools and things to finish the case myself.. though I kind of think they owe me some money if I'm doing that.. I don't want to pay them for the labor I'm doing myself. Is this reasonable? Would it be reasonable to ask them to make me another case of my liking if they won't give me money back? Or am I screwed? Ideas?

Also, Steve (or anyone else) what do you recommend for pres? I was thinking a digimax LT and 2 vintech x73i's at first... then when I get some more cash I'll either add a True percision 8 or some API's or something...

also what's recommended for spliters and snake? I was thinking about racking 2 radial 8 channel splitters and getting a normal 16 channel stage snake.. Is there a better way to go within the $2000 range?
Old 29th November 2007
  #25
Gear Addict
 
Graham Tobias's Avatar
 

hmm so I thought about it and I'm thinking I'm gonna go for a 32 channel snake on elco or mass connectors and then in my rack have an elco or mass connector that connects to the db25 input and iso out on the back of the radial splitters.. That way I can have a stage setup with ins and iso outs on a stage box, or in a studio environment just use the xlr ins on the radials. It also allows me to expand to a 32 channel HD rig in the future. Does this sound like a good idea or a waste of money?

anyone?
Old 1st December 2007
  #26
Gear Addict
 
Graham Tobias's Avatar
 

NOT HAPPY

I'm rather displeased with Jan-Al yet again. I'm so sick of all the bull****, the never returned phone calls. They want me to do all the work to fix their mistakes... I've pretty much had it. They owe me. I've been trying to reach them all week with no success. I have essentially a pretty but useless box that cost me $1300. It should have been fully operational in september and the fact that they continuously mess up, after sending the case all the way back to them.... it's pathetic. Absolutely pathetic and I've lost all my tolerance for it. I don't know what I want.. a free case? money back? hell even a returned phone call would be nice.

I yet again cannot recommend them as a professional company when all they do is come off like an expensive joke and waste my time. I'm 3 months behind with my work.
Old 1st December 2007
  #27
Super Moderator
 
Remoteness's Avatar
Man, I’m not happy about your updated report, especially after all the drama and additional communication you have been through.

It doesn’t sound like Jan-Al's method and approach.
Not that it’s an excuse, but they may be overloaded with these circumstances and that is why they haven’t returned your calls.

I agree they do owe you for sure. What they should be obligated to provide needs to be completely figured out before you address this with them.

Why is the road case useless if you can make the repairs?
$1300 is a lot of cash to drop on a case and you should be taken care of, but you must focus on the big picture because once you have crossed the line with them, they will not do anything to help you.
IMO, you need to address your issues; get them to do the right thing and move on with this nightmare.
You’re suffering from this ordeal and it’s pulling you away from the original goal.

Their wretched behavior must be met with tolerance.
YOU HAVE NO OTHER CHOICE!!!
Walk away from this the better person with a story to tell and an awesome case to boot!

Now, back to the problems at hand…

Okay, they haven't attached the monitor mount, but that’s not the worst situation. Right?

The missing rivet seems to be a problem. Where is it missing from?

Now, what about the partition? Where did it go again? Can you install it yourself?

Pad-lockable latches are not (IMO) that bad.
Keep in mind, if the key gets lost you can always cut the lock off.

The foam can be added to fit the G5 better. Right?

Look, I know what you’re feeling and going through because I’ve been there and understand your frustration.
Life can be very frustrating (at times) let alone our work environment.

For me, I wouldn’t mind having them send me all the tools and things to finish the case myself.
We build things in the shop all the time, so it’s no problem for us, but it does sound like they owe you something for sure. The time factor and all the grief you’ve been going through surely needs to be compensated for.

If time is not the issue I would ask them to build another one to your original spec or give you some bread back for the hassle you’re in. I would not ask for my (100%) money back and be left with nothing after all this time.
Remember, you could fix the problem even if it costs you some extra time and effort as long as they take care of you for it.

IMO, the case IS workable and you can add the extras if they’re still applicable.

When designing your I/O panel think bigger than you’re ready to handle today.
The MASS W4 is an excellent connector.
ELCO/EDACs are cool, but you must be very careful with them when you’re interfacing your harnesses.

I would wire the XLRs / DSUBs and such directly to the MASS on the panel with daisy chained XLRs if necessary. Options are awesome if you have the budget and space to make them available.

I want to hear more about how you want to interface your splitter with the rack so I understand you better.
A block diagram would be cool, but words can do the trick for now.

Graham, as you already know, there are plenty of threads about pres, splitters and snakes in this forum.
Click on a tag or do a search. If you still need some advice, I’ll chime in again.

With that said, remember to consider the space available and the amount of heat the units will produce especially if you have to aerate them. That takes up space too.

PM me if you need further advice and stuff.
I got plenty of information and suggestions bubbling under for you to absorb.
Old 2nd December 2007
  #28
Gear Addict
 
Graham Tobias's Avatar
 

thanks again for your advice Steve.

In regards to the partition they forgot to make it the first time, and forgot to ship it the second time. The partition goes between my monitor and control surface to hold the control surface down and protect my screen when the lid is closed. It's removable.

I certainly don't mind working on it myself, just that the case is in Boston so I can only work on it when I'm home. (I'm in Olympia, WA most of the time these days)


I've been very polite and understanding with them. I just wish they'd return my phone calls.




And for the splitter/snake thing I was talking about... the radial splitters have xlr inputs on the front and then on the back have a db25 input, a db25 direct out, a db25 lifted direct out and a db25 iso out. My plan is to have the MASS connector wired to the db25 inputs of the 2 splitter boxes, and then have another 2 db25's off of the mass for connection to whichever outputs are appropriate. This way I'll have a snake with splits for live work. If I use the rig at home or in a rehearsal space or studio and I don't need a snake, I can just plug the xlr's into the front of the splits and use them as an input panel.

haha I hope that makes sense.

Here's where the rivet is missing:
Attached Thumbnails
My new mobile rig.-rivet.jpg  
Old 10th December 2007
  #29
Gear Addict
 
Graham Tobias's Avatar
 

so after me calling almost every day for 2 weeks, they've yet to return any phone calls, even after saying they would. 2 weeks... I'm pretty pissed off. They're either that ridiculously lazy and or they're avoiding me. I've left them numerous messages. I'm starting to think if they don't call me at all this next week or I can't reach them that I'm going to have a lawyer give them a call. I can understand them messing up once, I can deal with them messing up twice, but I have no tolerance for them not taking responsibility for it. They've yet to follow through with anything they said they'd do the last time I talked to them. Haven't received a thing in the mail..

I'd really really really hate to take this to court but COME ON!

I'm going to be home for 2 weeks soon.. it has to be finished in those 2 weeks or I won't see it again until march.
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