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PreSonus StudioLive Pre-Concert Workshop Live with FOH Engineer Travis Brockway

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[Music playing..............♪♫♪♫] Good morning and welcome to PreSonus Live. I'm Justin Spence and this is the infamous Travis Brockway. He's going to walk us through today, what he's doing using the <a href="http://www.ccisolutions.com/StoreFront/category/studiolive-ai">StudioLive AI Mixer</a> and the StudioLive AI PA. Travis... Thanks Justin. I'm Travis Brockway here on the Shane & Shane Tour. I'm going to walk up to the front of the stage and address the members of the audience and talk about microphones. So if you guys want to come up, forward, we're going to talk about mics. [people talking in background and moving forward...] Hi guys. My name's Travis Brockway. I'm mixing this year on the Shane & Shane/Phil Wickham Christmas Tour. We're here for the PreSonus demo. The first thing I'm going to talk about is microphone selection and mic placement. The reason we're talking about that at a PreSonus demo is because it's important that the source and the mics sound good and that it's placed right. It' doesn't matter what your system is or how good it is if you're not capturing good audio at the beginning.

This tour is sponsored by Audio-Technica. We are using all A-T mics, which are great. We'll start on the drums. Inside the drum we have their dual-element kick mic. It has a dynamic and a condenser all in the same mic body. The way I'm using them is similar to a kick in and a kick out like you see on a lot of tours. Sometimes they place the mic inside, then they have one sort of at the sound hole. In a studio they might put one in the drum or at the sound hole, and put one further out to capture different aspects of the the kick drum. That's what I'm doing with this dual-element mic. On the top is an ATM-650, similar to a Shure SM57, both great-sounding snare top mics.

On the bottom of the snare I'm using a large diaphragm condenser, which is the AT-4047. It is capturing the "Airy-snarey" part of the drum. Sometimes, instead of adding high frequency EQ to the snare top, to try to get more "whisp" or "crack" out of the drum, or the high-frequency component of it, I can add in the snare bottom and get that high end without using EQ. I think it's always better to use acoustic solutions to fix acoustic problems, rather than electronic. Rather than reach for an EQ knob, to try to make something brighter, why not a move a microphone or use a different microphone in that situation. [Audience member asking question...] So the question is, would a condenser mic on the bottom of a snare work well in a drum enclosure? Like a Clearsonic drum shield or something like that? Absolutely. It's just like in an open-air environment, You just need to realize that you have one microphone pointed this way, and one microphone pointed this way, so they're going to be out of phase. You need to flip the polarity of one of the two microphones. I flip the bottom...technically correct...you flip the top one, but I'm used to flipping the bottom one. It works fine in the live PA so that's what we do.

On the floor tom we have one of those little gooseneck mics. It's an ATM450. It's similar to a Shure Beta 98.. Works great. It's also a condenser mic. The thing that I like about it is it's really low profile, so it gets out of the way of the ride cymbal and I can place it well and things like that. For overheads we're using large diaphragm condenser mics. Not because we have to, but AT provided them so why not? They're AT-4050s, fantastic sounding overheads. On this tour, I actually use the overheads. A lot of times when you're mixing drums in a small room like this, you've got so much overhead you don't know what to do. A lot of times mix engineers just turn them off. These sound really good. I'm able to put them through a great sounding PA. I'm using them to capture the whole drum kit. There are three common ways to mic a drum kit. Overheads...There's X-Y...where you align the capsules of the microphones. There's ORTF. Which is something about like this. 110 degrees or so, about 7 inches apart. Then there's "spaced pair," which is what we're doing.

Now the important thing to know is that I want the spaced pair...I don't want them to just look pretty over the drum kit, I want them to be the same distance from the snare drum because sound travels at 1,130 feet per second. That's the speed of sound. If the mics are at the same level, the sound of the snare drum is going to reach this microphone before it reaches this microphone because this one is farther away. So I need to do this. I do that with a mic cable. So I take a standard mic cable, or any cable would work I guess, I put it in the center of the snare drum and then I mark how far it is to one of the microphones. Then I reach over and see the next one. Apparently we lost the mic... Okay, so I measure the distance here. I can see that this one's further away. So I'm going to measure the farthest away and make sure they're placed where I like them. Actually something about like this... Again, I'm trying to capture the whole drum kit, not just the cymbals. Make sure it's not in a place where he's going to hit them.

[Sound tech assistant - "Travis, can you switch on the one I just put up there?"] Yes. Are we good?

Okay. So I've got them placed where they look about right to capture the kit. I just know that from experience. Then I'm going to measure the furthest mic. Come over here, and I can see that this mic needs to come up that high. See what I'm doing? So, I'm going to bring this up, Right on. Now the snare is arriving at both mics at the same time. It's arriving in phase, so my snare drum will sound as big in the overheads as it does in the snare mic.

Now, just a side note, we're using a drum kit that Joey Parish built. Parish drums, and his kick drum is a 14-inch similar to a snare drum shell. When you hear the show tonight, you'll notice that the kick drum is real punchy. It kind of sounds like a Hip-Hop sample more than it does a traditional kick drum. Alright, front line we're using condenser mics, AT 6100s. Again condenser, so the top end is really nice and airy they sound really natural. We've got a Leslie back here which is for an organ B3. This is actually generating the B3 sound, but it's going through a real Leslie, using three mics to mic that. Two on top, large diaphragm condensers, and a kit mic on the bottom. You can use any dynamic mic on the bottom of a Leslie. That works great. One other odd thing that we're doing on this tour because we're using PreSonus StudioLive consoles, we can record. We can multi-track record every input.

Because we're going to mix these songs down later, I'm actually recording the acoustic with a mic as well as as the DI. So I'm not really putting it in the house. Every once in a while I'll blend it in if Joey the drummer isn't playing. but it's perfect for recording. When we mix it later I can blend in the mic and have a more natural sounding acoustic than an acoustic just through the DI. I think that's it for microphones, except for down left and right of the subs we have some small background condensers pointed out there. These guys are all using their iPhones to adjust their mix with the console. Down on the last two channels of the console, I have these mics and they pan their left mic into their left ear and their right mic into their right ear. So they can wear both in-ear monitors and still feel the energy of the crowd. So when somebody over there, because it's in stereo, when somebody's over there, when someone say something over here they instinctively look that direction. Makes sense right? If it's in mono and somebody says something, they're looking around the audience trying to figure out who said it. It also creates a sense of space for them.

The guys have mentioned that it's the best ears experience they've had. That's it for microphones. Are there any questions about what we're doing with miking? No? Alright. So we'll talk about the speakers next. This is the StudioLive 328 AI. It's the same thing we are using on the tops. This one we're using as a front fill to cover the first few chairs right here. Then we're using the 318 sub. The sub is a 2000 watt power amp. Is that correct or is it a 1000 watt Justin? [1000 watts] 1000 watt power amp in this sub and then four, 500-watt power amps in the top. Each of those amps is driving the three 8-inch drivers and the coaxial horn that is inside the middle driver.

There's something kind of special about this that no one has achieved before. There's a guy named Dave Gunness who is kind of a DSP guru. DSP stands for Digital Signal Processing. He's figured out a way...remember the speed of sound thing? We were talking about earlier right? If you put a high-frequency driver above a low-frequency driver, even though their really close together, they're still arriving at the listener at different times. Really small difference, but it's different times. If you can align them together where the center of the high-frequency driver and the center of the mid-frequency driver are together, then they're arriving at the same time. When you do that it creates other problems. There's reflections off the back of the horn from the mid-range driver, and little distortions and things like that, anomalies that Dave Gunness figured out how to minimize through DSP. All that DSP is built into the speakers so the end result is a really, really smooth sounding, low-distortion speaker. It sounds extremely clean. I don't know what else to say besides "So far so good!" We're impressed. They're 90 by 60 degree, which means that they...90 degrees, like this. They throw out 90 degrees in the horizontal, 60 degrees in the vertical. So what that means is that if they were straight ahead, 30 degrees of it would be above people's heads and up into the ceiling. Right? Or up into the top of the back wall. So these speakers have a 10-degree tilt down. That kind of shifts the whole sound down onto the audience. It keeps it on the audience instead of on the walls creating reflections and reverb and slap-back echoes and things like that.

Makes sense? Any questions on any of that? No? You guys are a quiet crowd.

On the speakers, you can run mic and line into them. So if you just have a speaker on a stick and a microphone, and no mixer, you can plug right in. You've got a volume control on the back. All set, good to go. If you guys would like we can go back and look at the console and check out some of its features. Come on back. [Is Dave Gunnes with PreSonus?] No, he's with Fulcrum Acoustic. [Justin speaking] Come on around. Be on Internet TV. Hi, how are you doing? I'm Travis. Nice to meet you. Can you guys snug in a little bit. I'm sorry, I know it's tight quarters. Okay, this is the 32.4.2 AI AI is the next generation of PreSonus mixer. So how many of you have PreSonus mixers? A handful of you. Is it the new AI version or the previous generation? Ok. Well, they've done some new things here that are pretty cool. First of all, it's 32 channels in one desk. There's obviously other models. We're out with 32 and we're using 30 of the 32 channels. And, we are multi-tracking all of it.

The console has some new things built into it. Do you guys know what SMAART is? Every heard of that? Rational Acoustics SMAART software? It's used for measuring the response of the room. What it does is it compares a known signal, like the output of the console, or an RTA, a pink noise generator to the measurement microphone's response of the room. It compares the two and it says, "Okay, I know what I'm spitting out, does what I'm reading compare?" If it doesn't, it shows you up, it's different right here. That's the massively simplified version of what it does. Built-in to the console it uses one measurement mic. PreSonus sells a measurement microphone or you can use your own. The software walks you through really simply how to do that. I can show you how we do it.

So SMARRT's built into the console as I said. And to be clear, you can use this with any sound system. It doesn't have to be the PreSonus speakers. So click SMAART on the top window. I'll turn this so you guys can see it. Click SMAART here. Then it gives you some instructions: "You're about to enter the SMAART Wizard." "Are you nervous?" - No, I'm not. Here we go...[laughter] Proceed. Then it shows you a diagram. "Hey, plug the microphone into the talk-back input, and set the knob to twelve o'clock." Pretty complicated stuff..."Which output would you like to analyze?" We want to analyze the main left and right. Okay. That's the first set of speakers that we're going to analyze. So we say "okay." Then it tells you, "Put the microphone on Axis." That means directly inline as we have that microphone out there, on axis with the speaker. There are two modes of anaylsis. There's basic analysis and advanced. Basic is essentially just on axis. Advanced analysis tells you: Take a measurement on axis, that noise you're hearing is just a hazer or a moving light that's stuck or grouchy, so advanced mode tells you to measure on axis and then move the mic off axis, okay, and find out what's happening in different points in the room. Right now I'm doing something that's a little tricky I've got speakers side-by-side and in where those two speakers overlap, there's going to be some issues. I'm getting away with it because there's an aisle right there. So most of the issues, most of the crankiness from the 2 speakers interacting is happening in the aisle where nobody's sitting. So I can get away with it. But you could measure that and find out what's happening there. You'd have to move around and watch the trace and find out what's happening and use your experience and judgement to find out what's happening there. So in advanced mode it shows you multiple traces so that you can see what's happening. But it's not going to do something for you.

You have to use your own knowledge and experience to figure out what you need to do. Do I need to fix it with EQ? Remember what I said before... I like to try to fix acoustic problems with acoustic solutions. Probably you need to move a speaker if possible. Last resort? Use EQ to fix it. So for most of what you're doing, a basic analysis is plenty. That's what we'll do right now. Okay. What it's going to tell us to do is turn up the pink noise, the "Shhhhh" sound, louder than the ambient noise of the room. So, this room, right now, has a lot of ambient noise. You've got the air conditioner running. You've got the moving lights running. There's probably a hazer running back there. I'm talking...that's all the ambient noise. So you need to make the sound of the speakers louder than that.

Okay. [Pink noise gets louder through the speakers] [Travis turns off the pink noise] So I'll run it up to about that level I'll tell you what I'm doing so I won't have to talk over that. I'm going to hit "okay" and then it's going to come up with another window and ask me if I want to analyze. I'm going to say "analyze" and you'll see a little progress meter go across. It will measure the room and there's also something really cool. You'll hear the pink noise go "Shhhh....Chh" It's going to measure that little gap of silence and figure out how far the microphone is away from the speakers. That's automagic. That's really handy when you're setting up delay speakers so you have a balcony and you have speakers covering the balcony, or you're in a long room that's like this... rather than having a bunch of speakers up at the front blasting the people in the front, you can set those speakers up there and set another set of speakers say, right here, covering the back half of the room. So that delay finder helps you find that kind of stuff.

[Pink noise comes through the speakers] - Hit "okay" - Hit "Analyze"

There's the trace.

You can see the little EQ adjustments that I've already made. So [chuckles] is there a way to turn down the pink noise so I can talk over it? [Justin] No. [Travis] No? [laughs] There's no pink noise reduction, okay. So I'm going to do that again so you can see the response. Did you see that trace come up there? And it shows you the extra-low- frequency energy and so you've got a big bump in the low end and a smooth response there. [Audience member] So you're putting this EQ on the master out? Yes, the main EQ...[Audience] So every track's going to be under that?...[Travis] Yes it's going to go through that EQ. It's actually the EQ from the Fat Channel of the main fader, the main left/right output. When we EQ that, we're EQ-ing that main fader. So we'll do it again and I'll show you how that response changes when I change EQ. Something important there to notice is how slow the trace moves when I make adjustments. That's a good thing because it's averaging what's happening in the room. If it weren't doing that and somebody made a smack like that or something went "beeeep" for that long, it would show up on the analyzer. Because it's slow it gives us a general response and a better representation of what's happening in the room.

[Pink noise comes up again] There's the trace.

Okay. So it's showing what I just did there. The goal is relatively flat. Okay? So we've got it pretty flat, except for this big low bump here. [Pink noise stops] Ah, there is a way... no, there's not....so, anyway, our trace is there. So the bump on the low end is, I want that there by choice. I want extra low frequency extension. I want it hyped in the low end built into the PA, that's my personal preference. Some people prefer it to be flat. I prefer that kind of built into the PA so that if feels more like a pop thing.

Now if I were doing mostly vocal stuff in this concert, or if it was a choral group or something, I wouldn't want all that low end. But because this is a pop/rock band, I want that stuff down there. You'll also notice that there were some bumps there. I could have tried to get it ruler flat, but you're chasing your tail when you do that. You want a general flat curve. Some of those little dips in there and bumps, are reflections that are happening from the PA off the wall back to the microphone or off the ground and back to the microphone.

[Audience] So the notches you already have in there are already in there...

Yes, these little EQ's right here, that was something that in this room. The speakers don't need that.

[Audience member] Before you put that on the graph there was a bump. [Travis] Yes, there was a bump right there.

We did this before the demo because we were setting up for the show. So I ran this little wizard and saw a bump right there I smoothed it out, kind of smoothed out the mid-range and that's happening just because of the geometry of this room. I think this is the third night of the tour. The response has been different every time. If it was the same every time...maybe that's a deficiency in the speaker, but that's not the case, especially with these speakers. I can say that for effect because I've heard them in our studio took them into Studio B which is a purposed, a studio designer designed the shape of the room, it's a well-built room, we put the speakers in there because I wanted to be sure that what we were taking out was going to make it through the tour and I was shocked. I don't know that I've heard live sound speakers sound that good. Especially in a controlled environment where you know the room is right. So I can say from my experience that any things like this that show up are in the room and I'm helping the speakers fit the room better through this software.

[Question from audience] When you make adjustments on here is that changing your board settings? Yes. Just on the main bus. I can...I think this is cool...I can either change it from here, I can grab this, I'm going to use the one that's not doing anything, I can grab this and make adjustments here and I can also ...so these are gain adjustments...If I slide it left and right it's changing frequency, and then right here I can change the Q or the bandwidth.

Make sense? [Audience member] Do you run subs through there too?

[Travis] Yes. Yes, because the main out is running to the sub and then up to the tops. Now the other thing is, I don't have to control it with a track pad from there, I can also do it from the console. Which is pretty nice.

[Audience question] So for a church that's wanting to upgrade to something like this, where they have their room and it's not changing, a person could just come in and set up for the room. Set it and forget it? [Travis] Yes, so right, this is not something you do every Sunday morning or Saturday night. This is something you do once and, say you build a mix, sometimes you realize you've got a little bit too much 500 Hz or whatever in this mix and I need to dip that a little bit to make my mix kind of relax a little bit, then you do that with the main fader and you realize that was a mix thing. I get the guitar player for this Sunday mixed with the piano patch on this song in this key, all that added to a bad combination and I had to fix it real quick with the main bus. Maybe then go back and re-analyze. Go back to a zero starting point and keep in mind that I need to pay attention next week and make sure that I'm aware of frequency areas that built up in my mix too much.

[Audience member] In our sanctuary our mains are mounted to the ceiling. What challenge would that be as far as measurement goes? Right now you could pretty much aim it at your mains. Our ceilings are probably about this high.]

[Travis] That's okay. When I say "on axis," the speaker's up there, and it's pointing at me, I'm on axis. So just point the microphone there. It's actually an omnidirectional mic so it doesn't matter where it's aimed. Just put it in the path of the speaker. Now remember that all speakers radiate in a certain pattern. So you want to be within that pattern. Or, as close to the middle of its pattern as you can be. Whether it's a 60 degree pattern or 90 or whatever it might be. You can look up the model and figure out what it is. Make sense? Are there any questions before we move on? No? Okay. There's also system delay and output check, which is really handy. Let me go back one step on the room analysis, so that works for the main speakers, but remember when we selected main left, right output? Well, what if you have delay speakers over your balcony or on your balcony? You can measure those too.

Anybody have floor monitors? You can measure those too. It's just brilliant. So if you see there's a big bump at 2 kHz, guess where your monitors are probably going to feed back? Somewhere around 2 kHz. So that will help you find it. That's where you can select all 14 auxes, the four subgroup outputs, which have delay built into them, and the main out. [Audience member] How is this running onto your computer?

[Travis] Firewire 800. Okay, how are we doing on time? We're about half way through? Okay, this is system delay. Remember I talked about having balcony speakers or delay speakers? With this, what you do is, you set the microphone up in front of the speaker, it does its thing....shhhh...chhhh...and it says okay now move the microphone in front of the delay speakers. You move the microphone, ...it goes shhh....chhhh...and it measures that distance from the main speaker to the delay speaker microphone. Ideally you would put the microphone about the same distance from the main speaker as you do from the delay speaker, if possible. It'll tell you your delay time and it will come up here and it'll say for example, "We determine that there's 43.54 milliseconds of difference between the main speaker and the delay speaker. Do you want me to add that?" It doesn't automatically add it. Which is awesome. So, you say "Yes, add it to Sub 3" It adds it there and then you should listen and see, "Are my speakers time aligned properly?"

Play something that's transient, like hi-hat or acoustic guitar, or something, and try to listen for a single "Tih, Tih" tick right? If you are hearing "Tick-ah, Tick-ah" they're out of time. Make sense? So, there's also a principal called the Haas Effect. The Haas Effect is when our brain hears something that's less than 25-30 milliseconds, it kind of ignores it. The reason for that is, as my voice, as I'm talking, you're hearing my voice directly, but, you're also hearing it bounce off the table and out to your ears. Well your brain would be hearing that, without this principle called the Haas Effect, your brain would be interpreting that as two signals. Because it's lower than about 25 or 30 milliseconds, your brain decides that it's one source. It takes the one that arrives first as the one to keep, and the one that arrives second your brain sort of turns down. We can use that to our advantage with delay speakers.

So we have speakers up there and we have speakers 50 feet back, and we want the focus to be on the stage, not the delay speakers. So you use the system delay wizard, to figure out how far the delay is and then maybe add five milliseconds to it. It will make that delay speaker sound like it turned down. So set it, get the volume right. Use an SPL meter, like a free meter that comes on your phone. Make sure you've got similar sound pressure levels and then add five milliseconds and that delay speaker will seemingly get quieter. It doesn't. It's still giving the same amount of energy to the room, but it draws your focus to the front of the room.

Cool right? There's another thing here called Output Check. So if I want to make sure that my floor monitors are working, maybe this wouldn't be good to do while someone's standing in front of it, but say "Hey, this monitor's not working." Well there on Aux 5 we do a quick "turn the pink noise down..." Do a quick Aux 5 noise check. If you hear noise come out of it, you know it's actually working. Maybe it's actually working and what they are really meaning to say is "Can you please add 3 dB of my voice to my wedge? Something like that. So I'll show you now, if I hit Main Left, we're hearing the Main Left, and we're hearing the Main Right. Okay? Now I know that I have my Left and Right image correct so when I pan left it actually goes left. Okay. There's also a "Go Remote" mode. I don't have my iPad turned up to it right now. That's what that's for.

So I'm going to go back to the overview of Universal Control AI, so this is basically, everything that's happening here is represented on the screen. You can add names. So I have "KI" for "Kick in," "KO" for "Kick Out," Snare Top, Snare Bottom, Hat, Tom, etc. all the way down to channel 32. What that does for me, I don't have scribble strips here, so I use console tape to label my inputs here, but all the musicians on stage have iPhones, with Universal Control AI running on their phone. What I've done...getting this to fire up here...I'll open Universal Control AI, or QMix AI, I'm sorry, and when I say "QMix" it's the letter "Q" + "Mix" AI, it's a free application that anybody can get from the App Store. When you're connected to W-Fi router that's connected to the console, it shows you a picture of the console, You touch it and it says "Connect." So, I'm connecting to it... Now you see the "Wheel of me." If I turn it sideways you see all 32 channels of the console, Whoops, I need to turn that off. Actually there's a notification, the new iOS 7 thing, that comes up in the bottom, if you accidentally grab that you have to reconnect, so it's good to turn that swipe up feature off in system settings or whatever it is on the phone. So, reconnect to it. I'm sorry, I forgot we're Web-streaming... [laughter in background] So, you guys at home don't get to play along. So I can turn up things in the mix. What this is doing is actually remote controlling the mixing console. So I've got five musicians on stage. They each have control of their own mix. So you can see the first two auxes we're doing stereo in-ear mixes, so Shane Everett, or "E" gets mix 1 and 2. When he turns on his phone and connects, I get a little message here that says, "Travis Brockway" - it recognizes my phone name, it says "Travis Brockway's iPhone wants to connect." Permissions....I'll give me permission to use Kyle's mix. Thank you Kyle...and I'll dial it in to Aux 7 and 8. I can change that to control any of these mixes, and you see can you see that on camera? You see the mixes as I'm scrolling through the mixes are changing. Can you guys see that? So I can see that this is Shane Everett's mix. And if I scroll over, here's Phil Wickham's mix. I'll go back to Kyle Sherman's mix. So I can adjust things here. If I select that one, I can change the panning. Say for some crazy reason I want snare top to be in my left ear, so I pan it to the left. And, hi-hat in my right ear....make sense? Come back here and change the level of the snare and the hi-hat.

I didn't have to pay $500 for a personal mixer on stage.

I didn't have to pay $1,500 for the front end and $800 for the power supply for the whole thing.

I downloaded a free app on a phone I was going to buy anyway. It controls the console. I guess you're referring to [?JBL?]

They're not the only game in town. There's lots of them. [Audience member] When you use...How many can you use. Is there a certain number you can use is your mix? Well there's 14 auxes on here, so you could use 14, if you did mono mixes [Justin] It.s 15. One as a remote and then 14 [Travis] Oh, okay. There you go. So 14 Aux mixes all on an iPhone and SL remote which is an iPad app that can run the whole console. So 15 iOS devices connected at one time. That's more than pretty much anybody would use. So we're using, again, stereo mixes. So I have one, two, three, four, five, six plus my SL Remote all connected, all working great.

[Audience member] So that's what I'm saying, is on the board if you have a group, on the board, how many band members could you have?

[Justin] Seven. [Travis] Seven stereo mixes, yes. Did that answer your question? [Yes.] Okay cool.

Okay so previous generation of Aviom, and there's other personal monitor mixers, maybe they only have 8 channels. Some of them only have 4 channels, this has all 32 channels plus the tape in, the auxiliary inputs, the talkback, all four Effects engines, so the way I've set it up for this tour is Shane Bernard and Phil Wickham both wanted reverb in their ears. But Phil didn't want to hear all of Shane B.'s reverb. So I put Effects A on Shane, and Effects B on Phil, and they can...Phil can adjust his own reverb in his own mix. I don't assign it to the house mix because I'm using delay for my effects in the house and we've already got reverb in the room. But they've got their own reverb control in their ears and they never have to ask me, "Hey, can you turn up the reverb in my ear?"

[Audience member] That's a problem we have at out church. Trying to mix several drum tracks, all the toms, and cymbals are all in one channel in the Aviom. [Travis] Yeah with this they have individual control of everything there. Also, on every output, you have the Fat Channel. So if the drummer says "I'd really like my entire mix to be scooped out," "I want to lose 500 Hz in everything..." Okay, you can do it, without effecting the other players. So you can EQ, you can personalize the EQ a little bit for every musician. So there's another mode here called the "Wheel of Me." So you hit the "Me" button and you decide who "Me" is. "Me" in this case is Kyle. So "K" for Kyle's vocal, and electric. He's playing electric guitar. So I assign both of those to him. Go back here, and when I turn up this wheel, Sorry viewers at home, how's that? So when I turn up the wheel, it starts turning up "Me," which is Kyle's vocal and his electric. Over here, it's showing what the rest of the band's level is

So, say Kyle's not very good at mixing, and he gets all the way to they top....Do you ever have this, when musicians on stage sometimes say "I need more me." ? Even with Aviom or other personal monitor mixers, they've got is turned all the way up and say "Can you send me more? I need more?" Well, maybe the problem is that they just have too much of everything else.

So this is super smart. You turn up "Me" more and it starts turning the band down. Then if you decide that was too much, when you start turning it down, when you start turning "me" down it turns the band back up to where it was, when it gets back to where it was it starts turning "Me" down. Super intelligent.

And it's pretty foolproof if you've got musicians on stage that can't handle the pressure of 32 channels, [laughter] You just put them in this mode.

[Audience member] What is that displaying on the right? [Travis] This balance. Whatever this balance is, and you can help them with that. Just because they have this doesn't mean that I can't also help them. So I can select Kyle's mix, and change his level of Shane B. from the console. [Audience member] What if someone doesn't have an iPhone?

What if they have another smart phone - Do they make console versions of this? [Justin] You can get an iPod Touch for about $99. That's what I was thinking. [Justin] It does the same thing.

[Travis] Yes and bring them into 2013, almost 2014. [laughter] I don't know why they don't have a flip phone version of this. [laughter] Ok, so what else do we need to talk about?

[Audience member] Which in-ear system are you using?

[Travis] We're using all hard-wired ears. We're using PreSonus headphone amps. I'm coming analog out of the aux outputs of the console, down the snake, into the headphone amplifiers, and then hard-wired to the guys' ears. It's in stereo. It's hard-wired. You don't have any of the issues of the wireless going "phhhtttt" and freaking out in their ears. Have you ever heard that sound? It's super-annoying to musicians. And all the static and all of the issues like, "I can't get enough gain, the wireless technology is companding or compressing the mix a little bit and changing things..."I'm clipping".... all of the complaints I normally get with wireless ears we've not had any of on this tour. So it sounds better than usual because we're on hard-wired. If you can do that, it's great. Even if you have wireless packs for maybe your front line, put the guys that are standing still like the bass player who never even moves his feet, put him on hard-wired. Put the drummer on hard-wired. It'll sound better for them. You'll pay for less batteries, coordinate less wireless frequencies,

[Audience member] For some of the guys their own?

[Travis] They don't, correct? [Justin] We have amps, headphone amps. We have the wireless control. [Travis] And they have headphones. But not in-ear monitors. [Justin] It's all hard hard wire. That said, if you need wireless, there's lots of manufacturers AT, Shure, Sennheiser, Electro-Voice, Telex, everybody seems to make a wireless in-ear.

[Audience member] They're proud of them. [Travis] Yes, they're expensive. Yes, so this is a much less expensive, better sounding option than wireless ears. [Audience member] How do the musicians like it, as far as being hard-wired? [Travis] Well, Shane Everett told me, it's fine. They've got a 20 foot headphone extension that's tied into their belt. They've already got a guitar on. The guitar has a cable. You know, it's not that big a deal.

[Audience member] It's like that for us with an Aviom system. It's similar to doing it like you're plugged in. To the Aviom system you're hard-wired in. [Travis] Right. Yes, they're hard-wired in, but they have wireless control over their mix. And, new today, thanks to Justin, we have iPhone clips. You can see Shane Bernard's iPhone is already clipped into his mic stand. He's ready to go. He's got his mix ready to tweak. Alright. Do you guys want to see some Virtual Sound Check? Or do you want to see...let me show you real quick, if I pull this up he's up there playing keys. or maybe he's trying to play keys. Well, I'm not getting anything from him, so when you double-click in this window right here, it pulls up your Fat Channel. which is the same as right here. And, if I select the keyboard, you can see what I'm doing on the keys. Okay, there's my EQ curve. We don't have a bass player technically on this tour, so I have some low end added down there. to try to make it super subby sounding when he plays low stuff. Here's my Compressor, Gate, High-Pass Filter, the same thing that's right here, is right here. So it's showing me. If there's not enough resolution in these LEDs to show me what frequency I'm on, maybe I realize the bass is sticking, say every time he plays an A note, the bass gets really loud, or if you're a musician, like you're playing in the key of E and every time someone plays a IV chord it rings out. That's an A note. I know from experience and little charts that you can find online that A on a bass is probably 110 Hz. I can dial this to 110 Hz, but I don't have a 110 here. I have a 108. So I can see on the screen where 110 is and dial into it exactly. Then make it a tight note. Turn that note down a little bit and now when the bass player hits an A string or an A note, it doesn't ring out as loud as it did before and it smoothes out the bass. Now the bass is providing a nice even foundation for the rest of your mix.

[Audience member] You keep saying Fat Channel. What is that?

[Travis] Fat Channel is what PreSonus calls their EQ, Compressor, Gate and High-Pass Filter. That Fat Channel is on every input channel all the outputs. [Justin] Here what you see is the Fat Channel.

[Travis] Oh, look at that! Ever pretty blue light has a Fat Channel. It's cool that you went with blue since the Fat Channel is also blue. I'm observant. [laughs] That was Justin's idea? [laughing] Okay so remember when I said through experience or I know that A is 110 Hz, maybe I have a hand-dandy chart, or maybe I have a PreSonus console that has SMAART built-in to it with a Spectrograph and an RTA. If only we had some music going....Shane B.? Can you talk into one of the microphones?

[Shane B.] Hello. [Travis] Okay so if I select his channel, see that? [Shane B.] Hello, Hello, Check One, Two. [Travis] See that? There's also a spectrograph. Just a little more for me. [Shane B.] Hey, C'mon now. C'mon now. [Travis] See that. [Shane B.] Ba-ha-ha-ha!!! [Travis] Whoa [Laughter] [Travis] Okay, thanks man. Actually can you sing like one "Booooop...." ?

[Shane B sings and hold a single note into the mic]

[Travis] Right there. Thank you.

That note is feeding back. I can follow the little spectrograph tail., make my Q as tight as possible and dip that frequency a little bit. If that note is ringing out on the keyboard or the guitar, I can see it highlight on the spectrograph and dip it out a little bit and smooth it out. That's on every channel and every output. Everything that has a flashy blue light and a Fat Channel. That's a big deal. [Audience member] So what you were saying earlier about the in-ears, do they have the Fat Channel on their in-ears? [Travis] Yes, so because the output feeding the in-ears has a Fat Channel, I can...say, Shane B. wants a little more bass in his mix... like on an Aviom you can turn up bass and treble. Well here, instead of just a bass and treble tone knob, I have a four band parametric EQ and a compressor. So I can squish his mix a little bit and make it sound more like radio or mastering or something.

Any questions so far on this stuff? You guys are either hanging in with me or you're completely lost [laughs]. Alright.

Okay this area right here is showing you the levels per channel at all of the sends when we're in....I have them linked, these outputs, these outputs link to stereo so the left side is showing you the level. The right side is showing you the pan. Which is right here. You see, if I select Shane E.'s mix here's his volume for all his mix and here is the pan. He's panning that in the left and that in the right. Okay. Virtual Sound Check. So now that they're playing we'll actually do this. So the console comes with three software applications. Universal Control AI, which is that software we've been using to do SMAART and all those things. Capture, which is multi-track recording software, that with one button push records all 32 inputs and the main stereo out so you get a 2-bus recording or the two-track recording, and every individual track so you can remix it later. You just open Capture, hit "Record Now" and it automatically creates the folder in your documents folder. It starts recording super easy, super quick. Once you've recorded your service, then you can go into sound check mode (I'm already in soundcheck mode right now)

Right here's that Soundcheck button. You click that button and it puts all your inputs in digital. so these "D" curvy buttons, those are the digital inputs. As opposed to when that light is off, I'm coming in as an analog input. Because I recorded something from a previous show, I can, let's be sure we're not too loud here, I can play. I've got all of my channels muted because

[Music comes up through the speakers]

Maybe I need to work on my drums because this Sunday was really rough and the snare drum was bad. So, hear all that "thuddy" not pretty sounding snare drum? I can work on that. There's the snare bottom. Maybe I need to work on that. You can dial it in. You don't have to have the band on stage. You can come in on Tuesday night and fix all the things you didn't quite get right. Tell your volunteers, "Hey, you want to mix on Sunday morning?" "You've got to come in and practice." Then you can evaluate their mix before turning them loose on Sunday morning. Or before maybe they turn you guys loose on Sunday morning [laughing]. It's a way to get better. You get better through practice and this allows you to practice. [Music gets louder]

[Audience member] So will it give you separate audio tracks so you can put it in another DAW?

[Travis] Yes, you can. You can put it in Studio One which comes with the console for free. It comes with Studio One for free with the console. Which is killer. There's another thing that will, that is a game changer. This was maybe the most exciting thing for me. I'm still excited about it [laughs]. With Studio One, let's say you use Waves or Mac DSP plug-in, in the studio, [Audience member] Massey [Travis] Yes, we do, Massey. We're all friends here right? so we use these plugins and we want to use them live as well. Well, gosh it turns out you don't have to buy a $65,000 mixer to use plugins live. For $4K you can do this and say I want a DS-r, and I do, I want a DS-r on lead vocals, so I select the lead vocal, put it in "D mode." The sound comes into...and I open Studio One... I insert a DS-r onto channel 23 which is where Shane B is, it comes into the console, the preamp out, into the the Studio One application, through the DS-r, back into the digital input and down the chain. Is that correct? That's the input point right? So you can use plugins live with two milliseconds of latency. [Justin] Well, it depends on the computer's processor.

The faster the computer the lower the latency. [Travis] Plenty slow for what we're doing. I mean, low latency. Plenty fast for what we're doing. [laughter] Low, that's right. Maybe you're using Parish Drums kick drum, and it's a 14-inch snare shell, and you want it to be an octave deeper. You can use a sub-harmonic synthesizer plugin, live. I've never tried it. I don't know what the latency would be, but maybe auto-tune? Have you ever tried it?

[Justin] I've not tried it. [Travis] I haven't tried it either but it would be fun to experiment with right? I wouldn't use auto-tune actually. That was mostly a joke that no one gets. [laughter] [Audience member] I've used BitCrush. [Travis] Oh yeah, BitCrush, it depends on your style of music. Okay so we're one minute from out of time. You've seen Virtual Sound Check. You've seen the Fat Channel. You've seen SMAART built into the console. Now you're about to see Shane & Shane and Phil Wickham right? Alright, anything before we go? [Justin] No. If you want to look over there and just say "Thanks for tuning in. [Travis] Thanks for tuning in. [Justin] You guys can say it too. Look right over there and say "Thanks for tuning in!" That's PreSonus Live!!! [Music playing ♪♫♪♫]

Video Details

Duration: 57 minutes and 28 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: PreSonus
Director: PreSonus
Views: 730
Posted by: ccisolutions on Apr 1, 2014

Travis Brockway, Front of House Audio Engineer for the Shane & Shane Tour, conducts a live pre-concert workshop discussing how he uses Presonus's new Active Integration Speakers and digital mixers to get great live sound on the road.

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