Signal Path

HEy guys just a few questions concerning signal chains. (mostly regarding live set up, but may end up using some of it in the DAW set up)

The first is vocal related.
HEre is what I have as far as hardware.


Performance Gear>>>Art TPS II Tube Preamplifier System and Digitech S100 (FX processor)

I also have a RANE ME 30 if any single channel EQ is needed, and a Behringer Composer Pro MDX2200 if any compression is suggested as part of the chain.

THis all goes into a Mackie CR1604 VLZ Mixer which has some EQ and preamp.

NOw onto the PA set up.

I have a L A AUDIO MULTI GATE I’d like to use along with a Rane ME-60 for stereo EQ, and a RANE DC24 that’s going to double as a crossover as well sending two signals into two seperate Crown amps, a Crown CE 1000 (for highs) and a Crown Ultra Tech 1010 (for lows).

I have a Hush IIX Noise Reduction System I may throw into the loop somewhere
if needed if I can find the rack space (have one I use on my guitar set up already and it works great).

I just have no idea what order to place these in the chain.
For instance, do you pre compress the vocals before Fx or after? and EQing? -post or pre compression for the PA?

You guys have much more live experience than me, and experience with hardware in general so I was hoping someone here would be kind enough to give me a clue!

keep shinin

jerm :cool:

Sorry jerm the effects on my mackie where all grouped together.
And as a picker I only had to dial them in. Very interesting topic though, I’ll be learning from this too!
:agree:

Quote: (Levi @ Oct. 27 2009, 12:11 AM)

Sorry jerm the effects on my mackie where all grouped together.
And as a picker I only had to dial them in. Very interesting topic though, I'll be learning from this too!
:agree:

YEa I can't use board FX so much even on my UB2442FX-PRO (maybe just for an extra singer and/or the drum kit) since my needs change for different songs and as songs progress.

All this is being controlled by midi, so during the song the vocal FX change as well as the compression/expanding/limiting settings. (no midget behind the rack pressing buttons as songs go on) this frees up the sound guy from having to cue FX or tweek compression, so he can just concentrate on EQ'ing and over all mix balance.

I mean this is good stuff to know even in NTrack....like vocal compression and FX.
I notice when you put them on a vocal track they are in order, top to bottom....so it would be good to know which one we should be sending the signal through first, along with post and pre compression EQing)

keep shinin

jerm :cool:

WOW.

Maybe I didn’t put the right phrase in the title. ???

keep shinin

jerm :cool:

There is no right or good answer. Effects order depends on what needs to be done and the effect you are going for. Order changes all that drastically, and it can change from song to song or singer to singer or guitar to guitar or tone to tone.

Quote: (phoo @ Oct. 30 2009, 2:17 PM)

There is no right or good answer. Effects order depends on what needs to be done and the effect you are going for. Order changes all that drastically, and it can change from song to song or singer to singer or guitar to guitar or tone to tone.

Understood, that is why I have the LA multigate for instance, so it can change (via midi signals) different compression settings as needed during each song just for the guitar. (the GNX4 has various compressions you can use on FX as well but they are not that good) I guess that's what they mean by post or pre, so if I wanted pre I would have to use the built in compression in the GNX4.

I guess what I need is the general answer, for vocals, would the signal be compressed prior or after say reverb is added.
Obviously if you are going for specific effect on a specific channel for vocals you are going to do things that are not the norm.

Same with the PA, generally would you EQ the main out from a mixer before or after compression/limiting/crossover.
Again if you going for some kind of nitch sound your gonna put all your subs in the corner of the room and send the highs through a EQ and flanger after the crossover and compression.....not what I'm asking tho.

keep shinin

jerm :cool:

Take a look at this patent application:

http://www.freshpatents.com/Audio-s…454.php

It’s probably what you need. (read the summary at the bottom)

Hi jeremysdemo:

I like that Rane ME-60 EQ. unit…
Nice…

:agree:



I see you have a couple of Crown power amps…
in your repro chain…
Crown makes nice Studio reference repro amps…


It appears that your repro system/setup will be some kind of a two-way passive speaker setup…
If that’s the idea,you have chosen, then, you’ll need some kind of electronic crossover unit…
and…
then to decide on-or-at what crossover point to establish in your repro system…



For a two-way system the crossover points can range from below 100 hzs. up to and including 250 hzs. but can even be out of the that range… depending on your selection of speaker cabinets…
and what turns your crank…
well…

With the room-and-setup I have, I have chosen 150 hzs. as the crossover point…
That means that at 150 hzs any frequency below that point will be reproduced in the bass bins…
So, any frequency above that point will be repro’d by the Hi-amps setup…
From that point upward the frequencies will be separated passively, or with passive crossover networks, built into the speaker cabinets… The hi-end cabinets I use are three-way, passive cabinets…


I’m still working on getting used to hearing/listening to the repro system I have in the room I have…It’s an on-going work-in-progress to get used to a new set-up-and-room…




You can buy electronic crossover units that are adjustable so you can decide just what crossover point is best for your room-and-hearing…
and what sounds best, overall, for your setup, for your ears…



So…
the signal path for a setup like this idea will always be a standard default signal flow-path…
From the console outputs, left-and-right…
To the EQ. unit to the electronic crossover unit…
Then to left-and-right Hi-Amp inputs
and from the crossover unit and… to the Lo-Amp inputs, left-and-right…
That will be the default signal flow-path, for your repro monitor system…
and should never alter…
OR…
become the “Reference”…
However, you should consider alturnitive monitor systems…
They should include Computer system monitors and a setup that any normal home stereo would look like…
All speaker systems will be driven and selected at the “Input Point” of the electronic crossover unit…






That setup, in my opinion, would make up the ideal listening inviroment/repro system for a studio…




Before that point is where the the “Ears” tell you what you like or what sounds best-to-you…
Then, the listening environment needs to be “Flat” with no reflections and peaks to influence the “Ears”…


I know you know all-of-that…

:)
:laugh:



Bill…

p.s.
I’m gonna read that link you posted, sevenOfeleven

Quote: (woxnerw @ Nov. 01 2009, 6:52 AM)

Hi jeremysdemo:

I like that Rane ME-60 EQ. unit..
Nice..

:agree:



I see you have a couple of Crown power amps..
in your repro chain..
Crown makes nice Studio reference repro amps..


It appears that your repro system/setup will be some kind of a two-way passive speaker setup..
If that's the idea,you have chosen, then, you'll need some kind of electronic crossover unit..
and..
then to decide on-or-at what crossover point to establish in your repro system..



For a two-way system the crossover points can range from below 100 hzs. up to and including 250 hzs. but can even be out of the that range.. depending on your selection of speaker cabinets..
and what turns your crank..
well..

With the room-and-setup I have, I have chosen 150 hzs. as the crossover point..
That means that at 150 hzs any frequency below that point will be reproduced in the bass bins..
So, any frequency above that point will be repro'd by the Hi-amps setup..
From that point upward the frequencies will be separated passively, or with passive crossover networks, built into the speaker cabinets.. The hi-end cabinets I use are three-way, passive cabinets..


I'm still working on getting used to hearing/listening to the repro system I have in the room I have..It's an on-going work-in-progress to get used to a new set-up-and-room..




You can buy electronic crossover units that are adjustable so you can decide just what crossover point is best for your room-and-hearing..
and what sounds best, overall, for your setup, for your ears..



So...
the signal path for a setup like this idea will always be a standard default signal flow-path..
From the console outputs, left-and-right..
To the EQ. unit to the electronic crossover unit...
Then to left-and-right Hi-Amp inputs
and from the crossover unit and.. to the Lo-Amp inputs, left-and-right..
That will be the default signal flow-path, for your repro monitor system..
and should never alter..
OR..
become the "Reference"..
However, you should consider alturnitive monitor systems..
They should include Computer system monitors and a setup that any normal home stereo would look like..
All speaker systems will be driven and selected at the "Input Point" of the electronic crossover unit..






That setup, in my opinion, would make up the ideal listening inviroment/repro system for a studio..




Before that point is where the the "Ears" tell you what you like or what sounds best-to-you..
Then, the listening environment needs to be "Flat" with no reflections and peaks to influence the "Ears"..


I know you know all-of-that..

:)
:laugh:



Bill..

p.s.
I'm gonna read that link you posted, sevenOfeleven

The crossover function is going to be handled by the RANE DC24 mentioned in the OP.

This is not a monitor system I am building it is a PA system for live use (I use Sure wireless in ear monitors on a completely different mix individualized for each performer based on their needs)
I mean the amps mentioned are 450 Watts per channel, you are going to use that in an urban area for "monitoring".

I am assuming the path would be similar if not the same for a PA, as you are describing it,

Mixer (L/R XLR out) > E.Q. > Compressor/Limiter/Crossover >Subs speakers -high speakers.

The Subs I am using are Peavey PV 118. The highs our going out of two custom built 2X15" cabs with one tweeter and one horn each

The rooms size is going to vary, and some outside venues.


Thanx for all the tips!

I did read the link seven gave, it was a patent for an idea, not any information itself that would be useful in this endeavor.

keep shinin

jerm :cool:

Hey Jerm, I’d like to take a stab at answering your question more specifically. As Phoo has said, there is no right and wrong way but it helps to think about what you are trying to achieve.

So, for example to you want add echo to your compresed and tamed source sound, or do you want to add the echo and have the compressor work on all those repeats too.

Do you want a chorused fuzzy guitar or a fuzzy chorused guitar?

Do you want your compressor to act on your EQ’d sound (ie it won’t respond to, eg, those low frequencies that you’ve cut out), or do you want the compressor to act on the whole sound and then eq the result?

There is no right or wrong way but I think some approaches are more “standard” (whatever that means).

For example, I’ll probably do the EQ first and then compress, so my compressor is only working on the re-shaped sound. I’ll add “sound shaping effects” next like chorus or distortion (although I may want to have EQ after the distortion too!!).

Finally I’ll add delays and reverb as I want them to act on my “shaped” sound rather than adding (eg) chorus to my delayed sound.

Clear as mud?


Mark

Quote: (Mark A @ Nov. 02 2009, 3:55 AM)

Hey Jerm, I'd like to take a stab at answering your question more specifically.
As Phoo has said, there is no right and wrong way but it helps to think about what you are trying to achieve.

So, for example to you want add echo to your compresed and tamed source sound, or do you want to add the echo and have the compressor work on all those repeats too.

Do you want a chorused fuzzy guitar or a fuzzy chorused guitar?

Do you want your compressor to act on your EQ'd sound (ie it won't respond to, eg, those low frequencies that you've cut out), or do you want the compressor to act on the whole sound and then eq the result?

There is no right or wrong way but I think some approaches are more "standard" (whatever that means).

For example, I'll probably do the EQ first and then compress, so my compressor is only working on the re-shaped sound.
I'll add "sound shaping effects" next like chorus or distortion (although I may want to have EQ after the distortion too!!).

Finally I'll add delays and reverb as I want them to act on my "shaped" sound rather than adding (eg) chorus to my delayed sound.

Clear as mud?


Mark

Good stuff!

As far as guitar sounds I really don't put that much thought into it, I just use the presets in the device designed by the pros, that came in a CD called supermodels, if it is the sound I used to achieve the recording it is the same sound I am using on stage, whatever order the FX/compression/amp sims/ are grouped in the device.
I do send the guitar signal through a Rocktron hush system and and EQ afterward tho just to cut out the hiss or hum and boost the highs and round off some of the lows.

For the vocals it sounds like you are suggesting compression before FX, I did not think of adding another EQ to that path, but if you think it is necessary...perhaps I might. presently the EQ can be slightly adjusted on the Mackie.( highs, mids, lows)
The preponderance is the Tube preamp the vocals are going to be going through, is that considered an effect? meaning it should be after compression typically?
OR is it safe to send the vocal signal from the mic receiver through that first then the compressor and finally FX?

keep shinin

jerm :cool:

Break it down into two trains of thought.

Are you trying to:

1) Enhance and clean up the existing sound?
2) Add effects to the existing sound?

Also think of compression in two ways:

1) As dynamics enhancement just like gating.
2) An effect that is intended to change the sound.

Four more:

1) Instruments - guitars - basses - keys
2) Drums
3) Voice - solo
4) Voices – many into a individual mics or a many around a single mic

Think about what the needs are.

Reverb and delay type effects usually go after dynamics effects, unless your trying to achieve the Phil Collins gated reverb effect. But, delay effects such as phasers and flangers have totally different sounds when put before or after fuzz boxes.

Quote: (phoo @ Nov. 02 2009, 12:59 PM)

Break it down into two trains of thought.

Are you trying to:

1) Enhance and clean up the existing sound?
2) Add effects to the existing sound?

Also think of compression in two ways:

1) As dynamics enhancement just like gating.
2) An effect that is intended to change the sound.

Four more:

1) Instruments - guitars - basses - keys
2) Drums
3) Voice - solo
4) Voices -- many into a individual mics or a many around a single mic

Think about what the needs are.

Reverb and delay type effects usually go after dynamics effects, unless your trying to achieve the Phil Collins gated reverb effect. But, delay effects such as phasers and flangers have totally different sounds when put before or after fuzz boxes.

1) As dynamics enhancement just like gating.

About that, I think that is the goal at least for various instruments that require it, however I know zero about hardware and signal routing, which is the hopeful purpose of the thread to dispell some of that ignorance.

For instance, I am looking to send some of the live drum channels to the LA Multigate
(to cut off the background noise and any feedback coming from the overheads or kick mic etc etc) then back to the board via the inserts.
According to some mackie sources you need a stereo insert snake if you want to do this, and somehow the signal goes from the channel out and back into the same channel?
??? don't get it, since the Multigate has ins AND outs for each....1/4 inch.
Also, I need to run a 8 channel 1/4 mono snake to my line mixer for the sure wireless headphone setup.(which according to makie I could do off the inserts if you only plug them halfway.

But how would I do both? is there some other device I need to split my signals?

That is how do I send each channels signal to the Multigate and then back to the mixer, along with sending a lead off each channel to a line mixer that is going to make different monitor mixes for each person?

Perhaps I need to explain that a bit more.
This is a Shure wireless monitor system that sends two different mixes to various body pack receivers.(and you can also program various mixes in it)
I have a 16 channel line mixer as well that I would like to send individual signals off the main board too and mix on stage as needed by the performers, eg. drummer says "I need more guitar in my left ear" and presto, I turn up the guitar track just for his mix.

but back to the INSERT issue.....

I just got a feeling I need something else to achieve this goal of a standard 12-16 track XLR mixer, something that splits the insert signal without any little or no loss.


Good tip BTW about the FX order there too! does that apply to Ntrack as well and the order they are in in that little box? top to bottom?

keep shinin

jerm :cool: