In Ear Monitors

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi and General Audio' started by ozdennisb, Aug 1, 2017.

  1. ozdennisb

    ozdennisb

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    How is an In-Ear-Monitor to be best connected for public performance by a solo-vocalist deploying a microphone and backing-track that is played from a Notebook through a mixer, to amplifier and speakers? Does the sound from the backing track need to be split so that the the vocalist hears the track through an In-Ear-Monitor (thereby enabling correct timing and pitch) while the backing sound and vocal pass through the mixer to amp and speakers to audience? If so, then how is the splitting best achieved? How can optimum connectivity and control/adjustment of volume to both the IEM and speakers be effected? All help gratefully received..
     
    ozdennisb, Aug 1, 2017
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  2. ozdennisb

    GZboat

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    The mixer (sound console) has the capacity to do that for you. They are called AUX (auxiliary) sends or busses. The mic will be patched into one channel of the mixer, the audio output of the notebook into (probably) 2 more channels. The output of all 3 channels will be routed to the main mixer outputs to go to the house system. But all three channels will be equipped with AUX sends as well, that can be assigned pretty much anywhere. I am guessing you have a wireless in-ear system, which means it'll have a transmitter sitting near the mixer and you wear a receiver. Patch one of the AUX outs from the mixer to the audio input of your transmitter and you are good to go. Using the AUX send, the sound technician operating the mixer (console) can create an independent mix solely for your monitoring purposes that has nothing whatever to do with the house mix. It's part of his or her job. If they can't do it they have no business calling themselves a professional. Please do be careful. It is entirely possible to permanently damage your hearing with in-ears, just as it has been entirely possible (for decades) to damage your hearing with too-loud stage monitors and instrument amplifiers.
     
    GZboat, Aug 2, 2017
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  3. ozdennisb

    ozdennisb

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    ozdennisb, Aug 3, 2017
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  4. ozdennisb

    ozdennisb

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    Thankyou GZboat. My Q came because of my technical ignorance and you have been most helpful... the mixer used is a Behringer Xenyx 802 Premium 8-input 2-bus mixer (with mic preamps and British EQS It appears to me that the output required is PHONES.(The mixer also provides for CTRL Room Out and Main out).All 3 , it appears, provide for auxiliary output since the main 2 track L & R output is to the amplifier.
    Please allow one further question. Is the jack to the E I Monitor a standard 6.5 mm jack and should the mono or stereo jack plug be deployed? Thanks a million for your reply. Next time you in Melbourne call in for a coffee. p.s. I shall now be able to have a better read of the Behringer Manual
     
    ozdennisb, Aug 3, 2017
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  5. ozdennisb

    GZboat

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    I had to look up specs for your mixer and, unfortunately, it's going to be a problem. It's only AUX send is labeled FX (effects, like reverb for example) and it is a post-fader buss, which means any changes made to the channel strip EQ or fader will change in the AUX send as well. For monitoring purposes, you don't want that. You want a pre-fader buss. On a pre-fader buss, changes on the channel strip will not change your monitor mix. I'm surprised. It's been years since I've seen a mixer with only a single, post-fader, AUX send. Even something as modest as a Mackie 1202VLZ has two AUX busses, one switchable pre/post and one fixed post. I'm afraid your mixer does not have the functions you need. I did a cursory search. The smallest Mackie mixer I found that had the features you need was the 802 VLZ4. The smallest Behringer mixer that could cover the gig was the X1222 USB. Both seem to be about the same price ($200.00). For that price, the Behringer offers much more in features and functionality, so I'd recommend the Behringer. I'd need to know the brand and model of your in-ear system to know what connectors it requires. The AUX out on both the Behringer and Mackie mixers is 1/4" (is that 6.5 mm?). Your AUX mix going to the transmitter will be mono, so mono cabling should be used. Are you in Melbourne, Australia or Melbourne, Florida (USA). Melbourne, Florida is way closer to my home. Hope this is some help, though I bet it's not what you wanted to hear.
    Greg
     
    GZboat, Aug 3, 2017
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  6. ozdennisb

    ozdennisb

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    Thankyou Greg
    I am in Melbourne Australia. i/4" does equal 6.5 mm. I shall have a look at Behringer's range as you suggest. Inasmuch as the purpose of this project is to enable a solo vocalist singing to a church congregation of 200-300 to hear taped backup (ensuring timing and pitch) without feedback. I think that floor wedge monitors are perhaps over budget .
    What I wanted to hear was the information that you kindly provided and for that I am most grateful. The offer of a coffee and cake still stands. Come on down ... its not much further than Florida and much nicer of course. I shall seek to keep you informed of progress. Thanks a billion once again Oz Dennis B
     
    ozdennisb, Aug 4, 2017
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  7. ozdennisb

    GZboat

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    Floor monitors would probably be more costly, given that you'll need power amps and equalization as well as speakers to use them effectively. Equalizing floor monitors to minimize feedback and still sound good is one of the tougher tasks in live audio. In a small church setting with, I'm guessing, volunteer, non-professional technical help, in-ears would definitely be less problematic. One thought, and one more reason to consider a larger Behringer mixer (it's pretty much impossible to get more bang-for-the-buck than Behringer) is that more mic inputs would allow you to set up an ambiance microphone routed solely to the in-ears. A lot of artists who work with in-ears find that they put them in a "bubble", disconnected from the audience. It is common practice to set up an ambiance mic aimed at the audience (congregation) to catch crowd response. Many artists (most probably) find it difficult and unpleasant to try to perform with no sense of audience reaction. The ambiance mic goes only into the monitor mix, not the house, and only a little bit of it is bled in to the monitors.
    Are you planning for the singer to use a wired or wireless handheld mic? The only reason I ask is that if you do use both wireless in-ear monitors and a wireless mic, some care will have to be taken to avoid frequency conflicts. Not terribly difficult really, but necessary. A number of manufacturers offer frequency-selection programs for both Mac and Windows computers. You enter your location and the program gives you a selection of frequencies that are available locally (the programs have very large databases). Once you select one frequency, the program factors that in and tells you what additional frequencies are compatible. Many manufacturers and dealers also offer that service for their customers. In a fixed location use like your church, you only have to do it once. As you might imagine, traveling artists face something more of a challenge. Take good care.
    Greg
     
    GZboat, Aug 4, 2017
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  8. ozdennisb

    ozdennisb

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    Thankyou once more, Greg. A most-helpful, informative, spot-on reply and one promptly sent must earn you the award for #1 Guru. i am awaiting further response from associates/suppliers this end. I shall seek to keep you informed of progress. Dennis B
     
    ozdennisb, Aug 5, 2017
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  9. ozdennisb

    GZboat

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    Hi Dennis, I was wondering how your project worked out. Did you find the equipment you need? Have you had a chance to use it yet? I hope things are progressing for you. Take care.
    Greg
     
    GZboat, Aug 24, 2017
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  10. ozdennisb

    ozdennisb

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    Thankyou Greg. Give me until early next week to get back to you, but I have realised that the Xenyx 802 mixer has Ports for Cntrl Rm and Phones ...I have been out of office too much recently but plan to check this out early next week. I am not sure yet but think that Output from the mixer to IEM is through this Port. It has volume control independent from the Main Volume control (which goes to the amp, thence to the speakers.) This I assume, (not yet tested) allows separate control of the two output streams. I shall advise if it works and hope that this series of posts will be of value to other newbies (non as dumb as me, no doubt!) Thanks for you help so far. Dennis B
     
    ozdennisb, Aug 25, 2017
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  11. ozdennisb

    GZboat

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    Dennis, your guess is accurate. The "Cntrl Rm/Phones" output has a separate volume control from the "Mains" out. However, this won't solve your problem; it is the same mix going to both places. To effectively create a useful monitor mix, whether for in-ears or floor wedges, you need two completely independent mixes, one for the house and one for the monitors. What an artist needs to hear to perform optimally is virtually always different from the appropriate mix to best present the performance to the audience (congregation). Even in a simple setup like yours, I would bet that the track/vocal balance the singer wanted for monitoring would be significantly different from the best possible house mix. To try to use the same mix for both house and monitors is a recipe for disappointment on the part of the artist and the congregation alike. Artists who aren't hearing what they need in the monitors aren't comfortable and rarely perform well. Also, you could not make adjustments during the performance (if necessary) without changing the monitor mix, something else the performer would find very distracting. If we are talking about multiple singers, either during different parts of the service or on different days, the problems only become worse and more complicated. I realize the 802 has a very attractive price and that budget concerns can be significant in small churches, but I really don't think it will do the job you need. In that case, inexpensive or not, it is money wasted. I spent over 30 years as a professional sound mixer, for top popular musicians and Broadway musicals. I would not have tried to do what you seek to do with the Xenyx 802. Quite frankly, I can't really think of an application for which I would find it appropriate. There is just not enough functionality there.
    Greg
    P.S. Well, I stand corrected, at least a little bit. As I was wrapping up, it did occur to me that the Xenyx 802 might be adequate for either a lobby or backstage "Page and/or Program" system where no monitoring capability was needed.
     
    GZboat, Aug 25, 2017
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