advice needed for on-stage monitoring setup

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by drade, Mar 1, 2002.

  1. drade


    Sep 24, 2001
    i play at a church that is just finishing a new auditorium, we have started from scratch with the pa. it now consists of 4 community xlt500 mains, 4 xlt502 floor monitors, xlt509 subwoofer, and 4 TINY spot monitors.

    they are trying to reduce on-stage volume so they started by buying electric drums (smart move):) and building a isolation box around the organ's leslie, also smart, but as i was getting ready to carry my 410/head out the pastor stops me and says that i cant have it out there in the new section. im like hmmm, what will i monitor with? get this! they were only planning on letting me use one of the 2x4" spot monitors... (yes, you heard right, low and cut off 100hz) but i explained to them that i need down to about 27hz to hear myself. ('cause i play a 5 string tuned to low A, i think that confused them more than it helped...)

    i stopped up there tonight to see the progress and there sits my amp head ON the subwoofer, with a guitar cord from the preamp out to a impedance matcher/phone plug-to-xlr adapter into the monitor console (now i should mention that the head has a balanced XLR line out, i will fix that little wiring booboo later) anyway, on top of my amp head there is a pair of headphones and a headphone amp... they took my head out but left the cabinet in the old auditorium.

    they are planning on my not having my own monitor of just me, only mix monitoring through the set of headphones and my HEAD as a direct box.

    i figure that i will end up running my 410 as a personal monitor, the pa for house fill, and a spot monitor for the mix monitoring.

    sound good?

    but i need some experienced sound techs/bass players to help me convice them of this proposed setup, my input is never taken much into account because how much could a little 16 year old know anyway?!?

    any input about personal experience with a setup (or situation) similar to this one will be GREATLY appreciated.
  2. Well llike you can be the smartest tech alive but if your only 16 they will ignore you until your 30. Trust me I struggle with the same problem at church. I am now 22 and finally starting to get taken seriously now that they know I really do have more knowledge about sound than they do.

    Heres what we did

    put acoustic drums (only way to go) in a plexiglass/soundproof room and miced them. I play drums every sunday, and bass every wed.

    anwyays, I monitor with a Rolls headphone amp into some kick butt Sony headphones I have.
    I have my own mix, and all.

    As for bass.......well I have to share a mon mix with the other guys. The church bought us a Ampeg BA-115 for a personal monitor. We just run the balanced line out into the snake. But your situation wont allow that.

    heres what I would do.

    SWR makes a 1x12 kickback monitor just for stage situations like yours. You could get one of those

    OR just play with cant go wong there.

    as for anything else.....your on your own
  3. I play at a (HUGE) church where everything is in ear moniters. I also sit on a shaker so I can feel the bass and the bass drum (I started a thread on that a while ago, look it up if you're intrested) There is practically NO stage volume, except for singers voices and the the piano, sax, violin, whatever else they have that sunday. The sax/violin/piano are miked. The drums are shielded and miked. The leslie is isolated and miked. The guitarist has his amp in a back room, and miked. I go direct. Everyone has in ear moniters, and everyone is happy. That's an expensive solution. You might want to just get a 2x10 for monitoring purposes. Is this a youth group gig or is this "big" church? If it's a youth group thing then you should use your rig to fill the house as well as monitoring. Depending on size you might want a little pa support.
  4. drade


    Sep 24, 2001
    i also play drums, they had a plexi wall in front of the acoustic set but the main drummer has NO control so they got the electrics to put an end to that. thats too bad, it was a nice set.

    they also have rolls headphone amplifiers, but with the models that they got you dont have control over the mix, just the headphone level, they give the mix at the monitor board and hope you like it...

    they are doing things kind of oddly, they put the 32 ch. console on stage for a monitor mixer, and then bought a rackmount (20 or 24 ch) crest audio mixer for the house control to put in the sound booth.

    i really dont like the idea of monitoring bass through headphones. in my case im most likely going to need a personal monitor to really hear what im playing, you see the sound guys arent real huge fans of bass heavy music, in fact they cut low freqs excessivly. (and it's NOT because of feedback problems...)

    we are going to have our first practice with everyone there sunday after service, ill just have to see how it goes.
  5. drade


    Sep 24, 2001
    it is not a huge church by far, only seats about 350. i could easily use my head and 410 for the entire house fill and monitoring, but they want almost complete control of house volume levels and they think that i will be playing the 410 as loud as i do now. (im not through pa currently)

    another thing is that they wont purchase any bass equiptment, i would have to buy the 210, or even another pa floor monitor to run with my head's power amp for personal monitoring. thats mostly why im just wanting to stick with the stuff that i allready have. and monitor with it and pa for house fill so that they still have the bulk of the control.

    i forgot to mention, my dad plays guitar and they are going to have his 212 combo mic'ed, kinda like i was going to do, only i was going to line out instead of mic. they are letting some things slip by.

    i needed some ideas, i think ill end up trying all of these proposed ideas before its finished.
  6. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA

    so many great ideas here, and great to see people praisin' in the TB forums. :D

    but its also a little disheartening to see so many drummers with little sense of dynamics or the needs of the room itself.

    at our church, we have three services and the main drummer who used to play for the first two services, dropped out to spend more time with his fiance, and now plays the 3rd service with me. great sense of dynamics, chops to boot, and plays at a volume that best fits the room.

    but the new guy who replaced him seems to think he plays for Dokken or Quiet Riot! and the room isnt that big for the second service which fits less than 100 people. its kinda funny to see the first two rows empty at the beginning of service because of his drumming... but, oi...
  7. If you think they may not be taking your opinion seriously because you're 16, have you asked your guitar-playing dad to talk to whoever's in charge of this? Maybe they'll take him more seriously. Hope you can figure out something satisfactory.
  8. drade


    Sep 24, 2001
    ha, he doesnt know a whole lot about whats going on... i would have to tell him word for word how to explain to them what we need to have happen:) i need to rant real quick here... the guy setting this up is hired and supposed to be a professional, i can not count how many things i see that he has done that seem totally cookey. (for example- his using my preout 1/4" plug to a xlr adapter when my amp has a xlr line out with ground lift and pre/post eq buttons right on the front...) oh well, like i said i will figure this out sunday night and will try to report back with results and hopefully not need alot more help with this :) thanks for the input so far.
  9. For a church that small you shouldn't be relying on PA. I currently play at three churches. The one I play at the most (the one I mentioned above) is probably 6 thousand people (2 services of 3000) with a huge stage, so I obvously go through pa. They have the best PA that money can buy. Another chuch that I play at (my dad is the worship pastor) is 5000. I use an eden 410xlt and wt300. They have a weak system (as of now) so I need the extra bottom. the last church I play at is about 300, and is a youth group. I rely mostly on amps there, but they have a very nice pa. You should definately tell your dad about it. oh ya- I'm 16 too
  10. drade


    Sep 24, 2001
    i wouldnt be relying on it really, they just want to be able to control the sound level that the audience hears. my dad also plays bass and i know that he is kinda traditionalistic, he wants to have his own amp, and is not really fond of wearing over-the-ear headphones during service.
  11. I may have taken the post about drummers having no sense of dynamics wrong, but heres what I got from it

    Just becuz we play in booths doesnt mean we have no dynamics. I have been playing professionally for 4 years now. Been touring for 3 years. I have dynamics.

    The reason we have the drum booth is for a good mix in the house. Our sanctuary seats around 600 people and we have a decent system. I absolutly love playing in the booth. I can play as loud, or as soft as I want without worring about peoples reaction. It's a luxury I think. Plus the music we play (Hillsongs) which is loud, heavy, and fast needs cofident drumming, not layed back worring how loud you are. The reverb in the room is significantly heavier than it should be, so a non-miced acoustic set is way to loud no matter how soft you play

    Like I said, I may have taken that comment the wrong way, but some of us do have dynamics.
  12. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    no offense to ya Groove, cause i dont think i mentioned you by name or anything.

    but i just get annoyed at drummers who feel they need to slam so hard or dont even realize that they are slamming so hard when the room is sooo small and the audience isnt too far away. its akin to the loud guitarist syndrome...

    its like they're in a world of their own where they arent being sensitive to the volume of the other players. its like they're not even listening to the other players. next thing you know it, the guitar player turns up to hear himself, the vocals cant hear themselves, and finally the bass rumbles everyone outta the room.

    to me, and in our team's situation, it starts with the drummer cause he has the most control over the volume of his set since they need little mic'ing and its usually cause of the drums that people need monitoring.

    its all good, tho, i'm sure there are many competent drummers, such as yourself, who are very capable. and like my friend who plays with me at 3pm service. amazing dynamic control. and he doesnt play loud for the sake of loudness, but to build up the song and take it to new heights... now that's what i'm talkin' about!
  13. I gotcha now man!!

    I know exactly how you feel. Whats even worse is when they are to loud, and play way to busy.

    I have this one guy at church that plays everyonce and awhile...he says he tries so hard to play simple, and thinks he plays almost as simple as me. I'm like.......WHAT!?!?!?!

    just to give you an idea........he is a punk music drummer

    He has some leraning to do.......but what I wouldnt give for his speed. Man that kid can work a kick drum pedal!!
  14. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    LOL, yea, i feel ya.

    like "straightforward" drumming is too foreign for them to play. i used to play with this one guy who'd be all over with the kick that it was so hard to lock in with my bass... oi, its like he had like 5 feet going down there...
  15. yeah thats exactly what I'm talkin about!!!

    He is so fast, and double kick minded that I have to tell him before we start a slow song that I want to play simple....he just says I am.

    I guess it makes me better cuz it's forcing me to develop groove patterns that I wouldnt usually do.
  16. There is nothing worse then when you give someone advice and they act like there's no problem. I've had that happen many times. It's hard for most people to play simple, they feel like they have to prove something. The best advice I ever got was from Billy Batstone (He wrote "I waited", Big Tent Revival's "choose life" and tons and tons of others) He was here last week and we were talking gear and music and he told me "to get hired you just have to play like a dope" And it's so true. A great example is sting's new life album, "all this time." everyone is playing simple, and everyone sounds better because of it.
  17. I have a saying that I like to use before we are all getting ready to play


    it stands for Keep It Simple Stupid

    I know people have probably heard it before, but I think it's pretty cool.

    I usually just play simple enough so drummers who have been only playing for 1 month think they are better then me........of course until it's time for a solo, or a fill

  18. drade


    Sep 24, 2001
    yeah, i usually play a straight beat with few combinations and "flams":rolleyes: unless it is the song calls for it
  19. I was once told by Stan Endicott (praise band producer) that the kick drum and the bass is the most important marriage in a worship team.
  20. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PA
    couldnt agree more...