You are here

Onstage keyboard monitoring

For fans of synths, pianos or keyboard instruments of any sort.

Onstage keyboard monitoring

Postby theryall » Wed Mar 21, 2018 9:14 am

Hi all,

Does anyone have experience of using a line array PA as keyboard monitor during rehearsals? I'm in a five-piece function band (unsurprisingly consisting of vox, guitar, bass, drums and keys).

My KC-550 is wonderful as backline but not particularly audible up close. I use IEMs at gigs where possible. The band doesn't bring it's full PA to rehearsals and the Roland is flapping my trousers but not clear at head height.

A line array, such as the JBL Eon One, struck me as having the wide dispersal that would be of huge benefit in a rehearsal context. (I would also use the speaker for smaller gigs such as wedding solo piano.) I'd love one but fear that they don't have the balls to cut through a band sound. Monitor wedges sound great but I'm thinking would have their sound aimed at me rather than everywhere.

I'm off to Absolute to try some out.

Thanks!

Sam.

Sorry if this post is covered elsewhere but my search abilities couldn't find it. I'll delete this if so.
theryall
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Dec 08, 2006 12:00 am

Re: Onstage keyboard monitoring

Postby ore_terra » Wed Mar 21, 2018 10:07 am

At least for methe answer is yes: a PA active speaker is a good option.

Cutting through the band sound (provided a minimum output power) is more a matter of reasonable EQ and boosting for solos, etc. In other words, you need to communicate with your fellow guitarist :lol:
User avatar
ore_terra
Regular
Posts: 447
Joined: Fri Dec 02, 2016 12:56 pm
Location: Seville - Spain

Re: Onstage keyboard monitoring

Postby Dave B » Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:19 pm

I think that a line array is the one keyboard monitoring solution I _haven't_ tried! :D

Depending on the band / gig, I use a variety of gear. I have an active PA speaker (12") that can be a more traditional 'keyboard amp' if needed - either directly or fed from a monitor mix.

I use IEMs (wired) in a few situations and that's more about the capabilities of the desk / monitoring situation. I like it, but it's not always appropriate.

My simplest monitoring solution is to use a little Mackie SRM150 (loads of alternatives that are cheaper are available from TC, Behringer, et al) so that I can have it pointing at my head for me to hear nicely without flooding the stage with a wall of noise. This is great for me, but may upset other band members who want to hear keys. So often, I will use this as a PA send for FOH and other stage monitors.

(I'm a big fan of these small, fairly directional monitors. They are just a neat thing to have on stages)

HTH
User avatar
Dave B
Jedi Poster
Posts: 4425
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2003 11:00 pm
Location: Maidenhead
Veni, Vidi, Aesculi (I came, I saw, I conkered)

Re: Onstage keyboard monitoring

Postby blinddrew » Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:25 pm

The other thing about cutting through the band sound (and apologies if I am teaching the old art of egg-sucking) is making sure that your monitors are only playing the sources you need and aren't broadcasting up a bit of everything 'just in case'.
User avatar
blinddrew
Jedi Poster
Posts: 4314
Joined: Sat Jul 04, 2015 11:00 pm
Location: York
Ignore the post count, I have no idea what I'm doing...

Re: Onstage keyboard monitoring

Postby resistorman » Wed Mar 21, 2018 3:32 pm

Just bought a Bose S1 mainly as a keyboard amp for myself, but I’ll find plenty of other uses for it, I’m sure. It sounds amazing, is absolutely tiny, and expensive. It is an array type of speaker, so the sound is wide, but somehow redirects and EQ’s when you change its position.
User avatar
resistorman
Frequent Poster
Posts: 525
Joined: Sun Nov 22, 2015 12:00 am
Location: Asheville NC
future26.com

Re: Onstage keyboard monitoring

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Mar 21, 2018 4:21 pm

Why not just put the Roland on a table (behind you pointing across the stage if the rest of the band need to hear too)?
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 6435
Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 12:00 am
Location: Manchester UK
Finally taking this recording lark seriously (and recording my Gypsy Jazz CD)........

Re: Onstage keyboard monitoring

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Mar 21, 2018 4:26 pm

resistorman wrote:Just bought a Bose S1 ...... It is an array type of speaker

Not sure what you mean but it is not a 'line array' but a 'dual concentric' speaker configuration.

FWIW I have demoed the L1 mini line array and, while it sounds superb, it is not loud enough for the typical function/party band gig.
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 6435
Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 12:00 am
Location: Manchester UK
Finally taking this recording lark seriously (and recording my Gypsy Jazz CD)........

Re: Onstage keyboard monitoring

Postby resistorman » Thu Mar 22, 2018 3:41 am

Hey Sam, I agree provisionally that it's not loud enough for a full on gig, but I bought it as a "more me" monitor for when I'm plugged in to other systems. I think it might actually carry on to other band members, we'll see. I shone a light in there, and it looks like there are 3 small HF drivers in what Bose calls an "articulated array" and one sub driver. Are we talking about the same device?
User avatar
resistorman
Frequent Poster
Posts: 525
Joined: Sun Nov 22, 2015 12:00 am
Location: Asheville NC
future26.com

Re: Onstage keyboard monitoring

Postby ef37a » Thu Mar 22, 2018 7:20 am

Waaay ago I remember an article in the AES journal about "out of phase foldback".

By combining speaker cabs and having them out of phase and of specific orientations you could generate fig 8 and other radiation patterns to 'point' sound where it was and was not needed. Clever stuff that was never developed?

I also recall a design of a line array to reproduce gunfire for army training grounds, should easily cope with a keyboard!

Dave.
ef37a
Jedi Poster
Posts: 9044
Joined: Sun May 28, 2006 11:00 pm
Location: northampton uk

Re: Onstage keyboard monitoring

Postby Sam Spoons » Thu Mar 22, 2018 9:44 am

I think such things have been developed with modern line arrays and cardioid subs?

You may well be right RM, the literature is not clear but the photos seem to show a dual concentric with a couple of ports. I didn't find any more details though so I'll defer to your better knowledge. If you treat it as a near field as you suggest it should work well but 103dBSPL at 1 metre will only get so far.

I was referring to the L1 system above regarding not being loud enough for full on gigs BTW.

FWIW Bose are notoriously secretive WRT the way their systems work and proper specifications.
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 6435
Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 12:00 am
Location: Manchester UK
Finally taking this recording lark seriously (and recording my Gypsy Jazz CD)........

Re: Onstage keyboard monitoring

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Thu Mar 22, 2018 11:33 am

ef37a wrote:By combining speaker cabs and having them out of phase and of specific orientations you could generate fig 8 and other radiation patterns to 'point' sound where it was and was not needed. Clever stuff that was never developed?

Plenty of cardioid-pattern bass cabinets on the market, and I've heard of big rigs being set up with opposite polarity wiring and more sophisticated phase/delay arrangements to help control dispersion patterns.

H
User avatar
Hugh Robjohns
Moderator
Posts: 21151
Joined: Thu Jul 24, 2003 11:00 pm
Location: Worcestershire, UK
Technical Editor, Sound On Sound

Re: Onstage keyboard monitoring

Postby theryall » Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:11 am

Thanks all. Plenty to chew on! ~ I'm not expecting to use it to replace FoH but just give clarity onstage.

I've realised that I'm trying to address a few problems all at once here. I popped to my local (excellent) music store and they absolutely helped by pointing me in the direction of a QSC K12.2, which I liked but kind of sounded boxy - I don't know if this was due to the levels I was pushing it to (to replicate thirty minutes into the gig/rehearsal when the guitarist has warmed up), a limitation of small- speakers, or my ears.

I suspect that I'll go back and ask very nicely to try the JBL Eon One (https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/jbl-eon-one) so I can put the idea to bed!
theryall
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Dec 08, 2006 12:00 am


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users