Saturday, December 8, 2012

In 2012, the number of portable PA products is staggering. Active speaker and subwoofers are available from just about every professional audio company. The use of DSP processing and onboard power amplifiers inside these portable loudspeakers is such a treat! Setting up a great sounding, portable PA system is easy to do with all the great products on the market.

Mackie Designs is one of those innovative audio gear manufacturers that has brought their new DLM Series of Speakers and Subwoofers that include a built-in digital mixer, DSP processing and onboard amplification. Mackie's new speaker design allows for a very compact and lightweight cabinet. Now you can transport your sound system in any reasonable sized vehicle from gig to gig.

Recently, I read a review for the new Mackie DLM Series Loudspeakers. It was written by "Strothers Bullins" for Pro Audio Review magazine. Here is the article taken from the online edition of "Gear Guide 2013 - Portable PA For Live Performance". Please read first and then go to www.mackie.com for more details.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

"White Fire Reed" live taping at Cogeco TV 6 Sarnia

Earlier in the month, I had the opportunity to go to our local TV studio Cogeco TV6 and help with the sound mix for a live taping of the Sarnia band "White Fire Reed". It was new experience for me as a sound tech and I learned much during the session.

After some technical difficulties during the soundcheck, the live recording was a go. The band audio was patched into a Yamaha powered mixer with the main output feeding the video recorders in the studio control room. It was not like mixing a live concert in another venue where you would have speakers and
subwoofers on either side of the stage.

In the studio, only the lead vocalist had a monitor speaker while the rest of the band used their own ears to hear. Of course, the one time I really needed my trusty headphones, is the day I forgot to bring them. It would have been better if I had a monitor speaker to use during the taping so that I could hear the mix separately from the control room speakers.

Instead, there was one person going back and forth to the control room to listen to the end result and then coming back to me to make the changes. Still, it was a fun, learning experience for me and I look forward to watching the broadcast of the segment in early January 2013.

"White Fire Reed" has decided that they want me to be their sound technician for their future gigs. I am looking forward to work with them more in the coming new year. Currently, the band has their 1st CD out called "Positive Change" and will be out gigging to promote it again in the new year.

Check out White Fire Reed at:

YouTube  http://www.youtube.com/user/whitefirereed

Myspace  http://www.myspace.com/whitefirereed

Reverbnation  http://www.reverbnation.com/whitefirereed

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Allen & Heath ICE-16 - 16 Channel Multitrack Recorder + USB / Firewire interface

Allen & Heath has just come out with another brilliant product. Introducing the new ICE-16 16 Channel, Multitrack recorder + USB / Firewire interface. It is a new way to do multitrack recording, made easy.

Please take a look at the attached video which is quick introduction to the new gear:



The new ICE-16 unit will be an excellent unit to use with the Allen & Heath Mix Wizard series of rackmount mixers. The WZ3 -16x2 would be a perfect match! The ICE-16 unit also has the capability to be daisy-chained together when more inputs are required. The USB drive interface is such an easy way to store the recorded tracks. Up to 6 hours or recording on a 32GB USB stick! What an easy way to record all your band's live shows, rehearsals or anything else that you want to archive. It want to get my hands on one of these cool units and use with my regular band sound gig.

Just from watching the video alone, I can already imagine all the recording jobs could be accomplished with this simple to operate unit.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Live Sound in the 70s

Here is an article about how live sound was mixed in the 70s. I was just thinking about this topic and ProSoundWeb has delivered once again. Compared to today's live sound standards, back in the 70s most bands just had bare bones sound system which they carried around with them to all of their gigs! Check out this article for an overview of live sound in the 70s. Enjoy!

http://www.prosoundweb.com/article/sound_in_the_70s_memories_of_mayhem_mischief_mishaps/P1/

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Fashion Palace Presents: Super Gala Fashion Show


Wow! This is a first for me. It is not often that a Sound Technician (Me) gets top billing on the tickets for a show! I am usually happy with a listing in the show program or even a mention from the MC after the show is complete. Check out my name in BOLD next to BORDERLINE, the live band for the evening's entertainment. "Thanks Brigitte, that is awesome!"

I have to thank Brigitte Bisson, the owner/operator of the Fashion Palace Modelling School located in Sarnia, ON. Originally, Brigitte contacted me back in 2011 looking for a sound technician for her fall fashion show at the Dante Club in Sarnia, ON. I accepted the job and the show went off without a hitch. Brigitte liked my work and she invited me to work the next show in the spring of this year. Yet, another successful show.

Upon inspection of the Fashion Palace website, I noticed that Brigitte had added me to her list of staff members for the group. I don't even remember her asking me but, I am flattered that she likes my sound tech work so much! "Brigitte, I appreciate it very much"!

For the upcoming show in November, I will also get to mix sound for "Borderline" a band that I get to regularily work with around the Sarnia/Lambton county area. Borderline plans to play as a trio band for this fashion show without their regular drummer. "Maybe next time, Bruce".

In addition to the sound mix required for the band and the fashion music playback, a more detailed, stage lighting is being asked for to make the next show that much better. With the help of my friend John from Borderline and his sound system, we are going to get together and design an excellent sound and lighting system for the next show!

I am looking forward to an excellent fashion show in November 2012 and look forward to working with Brigitte and all the staff at The Fashion Palace group.

Cheers!
Ron

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Mixing Sound from the Side Stage

Last night I mixed sound for a gig on a stage, under a covered pavillion, while it rained outside nearly the whole time. Due to all the water on the ground around the audience space, it was decided that I was going to mix the show from the side stage facing the bands. I didn't really want to get buzzed, if you know what it mean!

The gig went well and I able to achieve a good sounding mix. Of course, there is always something that goes wrong during a show and I wanted to tell you about it.

The first band is a 4-piece with two guitarists, bassist and drummer with all four on vocals. Recently, the lead guitarist has added more gear to his guitar setup and is now running his rig in stereo. This requires the use of two input channels on the mixer panned left and right. It works great for his setup and he had a good sound during the show.

The second band is a 3-piece with guitar, bass and drums + vocals. During the break to change the stage over to their setup, I proceeded to plug in one mic for the guitar amp and patch it into the mixer. I got the levels checked and then the guys started their set. After a number of songs, I decided to go for a walk into the audience and take a good listen to the mix. That is when this one person comes up to me and says "there is no guitar coming from the right side speaker".

So, I go back to the mixer, take a real good look at my channels and then I realize the mistake I had made. When I did the repatch of the guitar amps from the first band to the second band, I forgot to reset the pan control on the guitar mic channel. It had been panned hard left for part of the show! Man, did I feel like an idot when I realized my mistake. Since I was mixing the show on the sidestage, I never heard the problem because, I was never out in the front of house area mixing the show. I waited until a break in between songs and then adjusted the pan back to centre for the guitar microphone. Problem solved!

Even when you think you have a great mix happening, you should always check and re-check all the mixer settings to make sure everything is good. Sometimes the simplest things gets over-looked.
Next time, I need to mix side stage gig, I am going to do the front of house walk during the sound check to make sure everything is in the mix.

Tonight, I was on the ProSoundWeb site and I came across an article by Dave Rat of RAT Sound. It is called:  A Great Mix? Sometimes It Depends On Who You Ask…

In the article Dave mentions an example of a scenario where a band is playing and then the sound engineer realizes that there is no guitar microphone in PA left. A very similar sitution during my gig! 
For any sound engineers who have ever had this happen to you during a show, I invite you to read the article. Click on the link below to view.

http://www.prosoundweb.com/article/a_great_mix/

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Stagecraft: Wiring A Stage Efficiently, Neatly & Safely


Found this great article on the ProSoundWeb site that I wanted to share with all sound technicians. It is called: Stagecraft: Wiring A Stage Efficiently, Neatly & Safely

If you find your stagecraft skills lacking this primer on wiring will bring your up to speed.

Click on the link below to view the article:
http://www.prosoundweb.com/article/stagecraft_wiring_a_stage_efficiently_neatly_safely/

The article was written by:


Alex Fernie is the founder and managing director of
Alex Fernie Audio Ltd., a leading Irish sound reinforcement rental company based in Galway on the west coast of Ireland. Follow @alexfernieaudio on Twitter.








Tuesday, July 17, 2012


Here is another article from ProSoundWeb.com and this one is for all sound technicians in the field.
Have you ever worked a gig where too many things went wrong which resulted in less than stellar sound mix? We have all worked on a gig or two like that and have learned about "What Not To Do On a Sound Gig"!
The following piece is a top 10 list entitled: 
Top 10 Reasons For Bad Sound (And What You Can Do About It…)

"Great mix engineers remain open-minded and stay in the present moment so that they can actively listen to what’s happening in front of them. And then they take action."


Here is the weblink for the article:
http://www.prosoundweb.com/article/top_10_reasons_for_bad_sound_and_what_you_can_do_about_it/P1/

This article is 5 pages in length on the website so, don't forget to select the next page link to view the entire piece.

Cheers!
Ron




Found another great article on the ProSoundWeb.com website. This one is about using small mixing consoles to their fullest potential. The article is called:

Advanced Small Console Techniques: Maximizing The Available Feature Set

"What about those times when, for whatever reason, a big console is not available? That's the time for ingenuity and some special techniques"


I really learned a great deal from this article about how to make the most of a small mixing console when a big console is not available or practical for the situation. Some really great ideas here for any sound technician professional. In fact, I am going to consider purchasing a micro mixer that will fit inside my tech tool kit. Just like you would carry a DI box, or cable tester, why not a micro mixer? Read the article to see all the ways a small mixer will get you through any sound disaster or situation. There are so really great micro mixers available from companies like: Mackie, Behringer, Soundcraft, and Yamaha.

Keep on rockin'!
Cheers!
Ron

Here is the weblink for the article:

http://www.prosoundweb.com/article/advanced_small_console_techniques_maximizing_tthe_available_feature_set/live/P1/

Backstage Class: Alternative & Effective Approaches To Sound Check


Today, I would like to share an article from the ProSoundWeb.com website written by Dave Rat of RAT Sound. The article is entitled:
Backstage Class: Alternative & Effective Approaches To Sound Check

Dave explains alternate approaches to performing typical sound checks for bands. For all of you fellow sound technicians out there, take time to read this one. Dave has some great ideas for making sound check easy and painless. Just because, it has always been done that way does not mean you can't do things a different way to achieve the same results. Click on the link below to view the article.

Keep on Rockin'!
Cheers!
Ron

http://www.prosoundweb.com/article/backstage_class_alternative_effective_approaches_to_sound_check/live/P1/

Friday, June 22, 2012

Analog Mixing Consoles - Still Relevent?

In the pro audio world, digital mixing consoles are becoming commonplace while many sound companies are ditching the older, classic analog boards. Do you believe that analog mixing consoles are still relevent amoungst all the new digital boards?


Personally, I still like to use analog mixing consoles for my gigs. I messed around with a digital console and I didn't really get into it that well. That doesn't mean I will never use a digital console. I think what I need to do is to try out some different boards from different manufacturers to see which one fits!

With the pro sound companies using digital consoles on major tours, many of the older, analog consoles are up for sale on the net. For example, I just saw an ad for an older Soundcraft Vienna II 40 x 8 mixing console. Asking price is $4500.00. Original purchase price was $55,000.00!!! That is a real steal of a deal for a console that will probably outlast many of the newer digital boards.

A fellow sound tech friend of mine bought a digital mixer and he likes it because, it has everything built right in. No need to bring the FOH rack out anymore. Also makes for a quicker load-in/setup/teardown during the show.

Okay, fellow sound technicians. I invite you all to voice your opinions on this subject. I am curious to get the low down.

Cheers!

Saturday, June 9, 2012



Here is a video of Matt Blackett - Associate Editor of Guitar Player Magazine with special guest Patrick Quilter doing a demo of the new Quilter MicroPro200 guitar amplifier. Check out the video for all the features of this excellent unit. Enjoy!

Quilter MicroPro 200 Guitar Amplifier


You are looking at the new Quilter MicroPro 200 Guitar Amplifier new on the market this year 2012.

Last night, I was mixing sound for a band called "Borderline" and both of the guitarists in the band purchased on of these little powerhouse guitar amps! This little amp only has an 8" speaker inside but, has an amazing 200 watts of power output available! The amp is of a solid state design but, has all those great sounds of a tube style guitar amp. Right now this amp is only available for sale online on the Quilter Labs website at http://www.quilterlabs.com/

I was able to achieve a great sounding mix of both guitarists in the band using the Quilter amps to compliment their specific styles. By using the XLR direct outputs on the back of each amp, there were no microphones required to get the guitar sound to the mixing console. It made job as sound tech much easier for the gig. This amp is a big sounding unit in a small package. The amp has a weight of 19 lbs. which makes it easy to transport it from gig to gig without any effort.

Go to the company website and find the page with the sound clips on it to listen to this excellent guitar amp!

Borderline - Live At The Dow People Place, Sarnia, ON.


Last night, Thursday, June 7th,  I was mixing sound for the band "Borderline" at the Dow People Place - Centennial Park - Sarnia, ON. It was great summer weather and a big crowd came out for the music. After a minor technical issue was solved, the show went on. Two quick songs for a soundcheck and we were off and running!

Looking forward to the next Borderline gig at the DPP on Thursday, July 5th at 7:30pm. For all of you Sarnia/Lambton folks, why not come on down to the DPP for an evening of great music with Borderline.
Admission only costs a Loonie to get it the gates. Hope to see you there next month.

Cheers!
Ron

Friday, April 27, 2012

"A Quick Live Sound Q & A" in Canadian Musician magazine


Last month, I received a very cool phone call and email from Mr. Andrew King - Editor of Canadian Musician magazine. Andrew wanted permission to use my name and job title for an article that he was writing for this issue of the magazine. I thought it was the coolest thing to be contacted by a magazine editor asking me to use my name in print! Of course, I said "yes"!

Last year, I was reading the September/October 2011 issue of CM magazine specifically the "Live Sound" column written my Mark Desloges - Audio Technician with Tour Tech East. I really enjoyed the piece so I decided to email Mark Desloges directly with some more specific audio questions. Mark responded to my email with all the information that I needed.

Needless to say, the editor Andrew King really enjoyed the question and answer kind of thing and thought it would make a good article for the magazine. So, my email questions, name and job title all made it into print! Yeah! You can view the article in the online edition of Canadian Musician magazine on their website. Here is the link: www.canadianmusician.com/online

Click on the web link, let the online editon of the magazine load into your computer and then flip through to page 60 to view the article. Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Fashion Palace Show April 29, 2012

After working sound for a fashion show back in November 2011, I have been asked to work again on the upcoming fashion show on Sunday, April 29, 2012. "The Fashion Palace" is the name of the group and the show will be held at The Dante Club, 1330 London Road, Sarnia, ON.


Tickets are $20.00 each

Doors open at 6:30pm - Fashion Show at 7:30pm

Live entertainment with Mike Cervini



http://modelsatfashionpalace.com/

Advanced Small Console Techniques Article

Hello Everyone!

Just finished reading a great article on the ProSoundWeb site.
"Advanced Small Console Techniques: Maximizing The Available Feature Set"

Essentially, this article explains tips and techniques for working with small consoles when a big console is not available. Some great ideas listed for using small consoles to their maximum potential.


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

My Updated Business Card


Here is a copy of my newly designed "Sound Technician" business card. I am a trained sound technician working freelance jobs with the Sarnia/Lambton area.

Do you have a sound system for your band but, nobody to operate it? If so, that is where I can be of service. I normally work as a sound technician only using sound systems provided by the band or artist.

If you require a sound system for your show or event, I usually rent the appropriate gear locally for the requirements of your show. I will then charge an additional fee for the rental cost of the equipment.

If you are interested in using my services, please contact me directly to discuss the details of your show.
I will provide you with a job quotation based on the requirements of your production.

Please contact me directly via the following methods:

Ron Behro
Telephone: (519) 336-1767
Email: rgbehro@hotmail.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/ronbehro

Thanks for stopping by. I love forward to helping you on your next show or gig.