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Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

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Re: Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

Postby Dave B » Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:08 pm

The Elf wrote: a single PM-16D and a few PM-16Ms and you'd have individual monitor mixes via a few CAT5 cables (no separate power needed for the personal mixers).

Interesting. So you don't need any external power? Is this just for the line output? Or can you also run the headphone amp without power?
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Re: Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

Postby stormymondays » Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:16 pm

:thumbup:

The XR18 would be doable but we would totally max it out (inputs and outputs). That's why I like the Soundcraft better. It also makes sense to have spare ins and outs as @Dave B suggested.

@The Elf How do you like the personal monitoring system? Not that I'd ever trust some of my band mates with that when using wedges!!!

However, now that I think of it, the X32 rack does have extra I/O I hadn't considered: 6 aux In and Out (balanced, line-level). That makes it 16 XLR inputs + 6 TRS line inputs; and 8 XLR outputs + 6 TRS outputs. And it has the advantage of being part of the whole X32 environment. If the venue has one, we can go CAT5 into the FOH desk.

Time to really weigh the Behringer against the Soundcraft...
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Re: Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

Postby The Elf » Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:17 pm

Dave B wrote:
The Elf wrote: a single P16-D and a few P16-Ms and you'd have individual monitor mixes via a few CAT5 cables (no separate power needed for the personal mixers).
Interesting. So you don't need any external power? Is this just for the line output? Or can you also run the headphone amp without power?
The P16-Ms are powered from the P16-D's CAT5 connection. You can use line or headphones output without any problem.

Personally I go line-out to my wireless headphone transmitter, but one of us has his own powered monitors - player's choice.
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Re: Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

Postby The Elf » Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:25 pm

stormymondays wrote:The XR18 would be doable but we would totally max it out (inputs and outputs).
Yeah, we are also totally maxxed out on our XR18, but the benefits of size and cost make us more than willing to compromise.

stormymondays wrote:@The Elf How do you like the personal monitoring system? Not that I'd ever trust some of my band mates with that when using wedges!!!
Each of us has their own monitoring, so no sharing required. Two of the four of us are using in-ears now, and that has been such a turning point - no more dodgy monitoring! I wouldn't want to go back to wedges, or anything of the like. Once the gig begins I honestly don't even remember that I'm using in-ears - I just get with trying to play the right notes!

When I first set up the XR18 I was using the bus outputs to send to monitoring. In rehearsal everyone was quite sure that they only need a FOH mix and felt it was overkill. Needless to say, once we got on stage everyone wanted something different, and some were even wanting different mixes for different songs. It was at that point that I ordered the P16-D/Ms and told them to get on with it for themselves. Being able to store 16 different mixes is useful for those places where you need something a bit different to the norm. These stored mixes can be recalled by MIDI - I would use our performance software to automatically switch between them if I felt the need.

I'm using the same performance software to lift/mute the talk mic to FOH/monitoring and the audience mic into our in-ears between songs.

stormymondays wrote:However, now that I think of it, the X32 rack does have extra I/O...
And it has Ultranet, so you could add a P16-D and P16-Ms, should you want!
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Re: Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:25 pm

Dave B wrote:I'm a fan of stuff with jack outs going into DIs into mic channels rather than using jack inputs...

For stage work, absolutely -- me too! :thumbup: :D
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Re: Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

Postby The Elf » Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:31 pm

I've never much seen the point in going from line level to mic, only to have to amp it back up again. To this end if I can run line levels to FOH I do, though I can provide mic if FOH insists.

Orchid made me a couple of VERY useful custom boxes that take stereo line inputs and split to both mic AND line with isolation. That way I can always offer the choice.
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Re: Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

Postby Sam Spoons » Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:36 pm

I have an X32 Compact and Rack, loads of options available and price wise very good VFM.
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Re: Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Thu Jun 27, 2019 5:29 pm

The Elf wrote:I've never much seen the point in going from line level to mic, only to have to amp it back up again.

Yes, taken at face value it does seem silly, and should, in theory at least, increase the noise and distortion.

However, with a very large percentage of consoles, plugging into the line inputs usually means padding the signal down to mic level and routing through the standard mic preamp anyway. So you're not actually losing anything by padding down at the source end instead. And modern preamps are so good that the added noise and distortion is difficult to measure, let alone hear!

But the real benefits on stage to using a DI box are firstly, and most importantly, the safety net it provides in protecting your lovely keyboards/interfaces from the accidental application of phantom power. Secondly, galvanic isolation for protection against damage from electrical faults and missing safety earths. And thirdly, ease of plugging and routing -- if everything from the stage is mic-level (ish) there won't be any nasty surprises at the console if something gets plugged down the wrong channel.

To this end if I can run line levels to FOH I do, though I can provide mic if FOH insists.

I'm not a regular stage performer, and I don't mix that many live shows anymore, but whichever side of the stage I'm on, I personally prefer to always use DIs for line level sources. Everything going to the console at mic level just makes life easier, more convenient and safer... the last point being the critical one

Orchid made me a couple of VERY useful custom boxes that take stereo line inputs and split to both mic AND line with isolation. That way I can always offer the choice.

Quite happy with that as a solution -- but it's the transformer isolation that is the absolutely essential part. I really wouldn't countenance plugging a line source on stage directly into the stagebox/snake and down to the console without a transformer in the way -- whether from a line-isolator (hum-break) or a DI box. Not using one is just asking for trouble... expensive, disappointing (and potentially smokey) trouble! :? :lol:

If it becomes necessary for some reason I have (and will) feed a line-level source directly to the console but only ever via a line-level transformer isolation box (instead of a DI box) ... but that's usually only if I've run out of mic channels or need a stereo channel etc... It's the exception rather than the rule for me.

I don't know what John @Orchid has done in your box, but if it were me, I'd probably use a line-level isolation transformer with dual secondaries, and fit a balanced 30dB pad to the second output to provide a mic-level feed. Simples. ;-)
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Re: Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

Postby stormymondays » Thu Jun 27, 2019 5:41 pm

Now you got me worried... If a given piece of equipment has an XLR line-out, what are the chances that it will not have phantom-blocking circuitry? I never even stopped to think about this.

Our bass amp (Ampeg PF800), keyboard amp (Behringer whatever) and the Line 6 pedalboard all go through XLR line outs. I'm pretty sure if they weren't blocking phantom power we would have fried at least one of those already...
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Re: Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

Postby The Elf » Thu Jun 27, 2019 5:46 pm

Hugh Robjohns wrote:I don't know what John @Orchid has done in your box, but if it were me, I'd probably use a line-level isolation transformer with dual secondaries, and fit a balanced 30dB pad to the second output to provide a mic-level feed. Simples. ;-)
I don't know what is in their either, but it is isolated and I can even use both line and mic outputs at the same time, should that prove useful in some circumstance.

I'd highly recommend these boxes to everyone, but I know that John had to source custom parts for me, so he may not thank me for promoting them! :lol:
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Re: Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Thu Jun 27, 2019 5:58 pm

stormymondays wrote:Now you got me worried... If a given piece of equipment has an XLR line-out, what are the chances that it will not have phantom-blocking circuitry?

I'd like to think that if a manufacturer decided to put an XLR DI out on a product they would have the intelligent foresight to make it phantom-safe... and, to be fair, all of the amps and keyboards with this facility that I've used in recent years have been...

But personally, I wouldn't just make that assumption -- I'd want to see specific confirmation in writing in the manual or on the device itself before I plugged it straight into anything with phantom power on it first.

If in any doubt at all, a passive DI or line-isolator box is ALWAYS much less of a financial outlay before the gig than a new or repaired Amp or keyboard etc afterwards!

H
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Re: Floor monitors: 1 vs 2 / dedicated vocal/instruments wedges?

Postby Wonks » Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:48 pm

The Elf wrote:Once the gig begins I honestly don't even remember that I'm using in-ears - I just get with trying to play the right notes!

Then all you need to do is get them in the right order. ;)
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