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Mixing Live Sound

Lesson 16 of 17

Helpful Tools and Apps


Mixing Live Sound

Lesson 16 of 17

Helpful Tools and Apps


Lesson Info

Helpful Tools and Apps

Okay lastly what are some things that you can have in your tool kit to be successful front house engineer the easiest thing that you can get right now is an arty app any sort of frequency analyzing app on your phone there's free one I know there's even one that's much better that's that's multiple actives so it's much more specific that's five bucks it's worth the five dollars just google arta arte sound or frequency or f ft in the app store I'm sure you can find some great ones there's an app called f ft that I think it's ten dollars it's muchmore involved it actually has signal generator it has a frequency meter and spl meter all built in just with your camera phone or with your iphone so our android ah cable tester is super important this is great for tat line checking to you can plug microphone cable from the output and send a signal to test signal all of your lines you can also cable test to see if the cables are bad super helpful it tests all different types of cables gaff tape d...

efinitely have gaff tape on hand not duct tape it is the worst when you have someone that uses duct tape on microphone cable and they peel it off and there's this gooey mass left on the cable gaff tape is expensive but it's worth it it's very very strong it's easy to tear off parit of break off pieces and it doesn't leave a residue so definitely used gaff tape on spl meter is super important we're going to show a video here in just a second that shows how to use an spl meter it's very simple ah lot of outdoor venues especially have sound pressure limits and that you can actually get fined if you continually break sound pressure limit. So capital block party, for example, they have a ninety five d b limit for front of house, so you have to have that meter set up for a house to make sure you're staying underneath that level. It's it's your responsibility a sodding iron is always great if you have a cable that goes bad, you can quickly fix it I learned how to saw her connections it's really simple on dh then the last thing headphones obviously have a great pair of headphones that you trust and turnarounds don't you know what turnarounds our and adapters, but all the time you'll have a situation where you have to run a line back up to the stage for whatever reason and there's on ly xlr female on this side and excellent male on the other side turnarounds have you could make him a bunch. They're just a cable with two xlr males on both sides to excelaire females, and it reverses the reverses the female and male and of each connector so have, like three of each of those have trs texel are adapters have garcia teo quarter inch adapters, ipod cables, any sort of cables you can think of. I have a big plastic bin that's filled with sleeves that air just their specific for every type of turnaround that I take to every gig. So I always have a cable to turn something around if I need to. Yeah, and then a great pair of headphones. Ok, so we've got some questions I'm going watch this last section just on spl meters on how to use those in the difference between a weighted be waited in the sea weighted scale on, and then we'll answer questions cool, so a lot of outdoor festivals especially often have noise restrictions within the city limits. Um, and you have to be very careful about those, because if you don't actually follow them, you can end up with huge fines and you're responsible is the sound engineer. So for this festival is very clear ninety five d be a limit strictly enforced, we're going to use a weighted, so we're going to set the sound meter spl meter, too. We'll set it to ninety, so we can see everything above ninety. We're going to switch to a waiting, and what a waiting means is that it's compensating for the increased sound pressure response and low frequencies so you actually get away with a little more, um, dbs pl within a weighted scale, then it's, just a flat scale, which helps us get a little ladder ninety five it's. Pretty quiet. But depending on how concise the mixes, you can actually make it, make it still still pop pretty much especially with the mire melodies and the speakers that we're using. Cool. So yeah, have it spl meter. They're not that expensive. Make sure you have one, so you can use it.

Class Description

Mixing Live Sound can be one of the most daunting tasks for any engineer. In this class, Zach Varnell will walk you through the entire live sound production workflow, from loading in a PA and rigging and flying speakers to soundcheck and mixing on the fly.

In this class, you will get to see an entire day of load-in from Seattle's Capitol Hill Block Party along with a complete breakdown of a live sound production workflow and interviews with some of the country's top touring live sound engineers. 

You will learn:

  • Scaleable components of a live sound PA
  • Power distribution and management
  • Tuning speakers with a SMART system and FFT analysis
  • Mic Placement and tips for an effective soundcheck
  • Mixing front of house
  • Mixing for stage monitors and in-ears

We'll also walk through a live mix setup and interview with two touring engineers from their FOH mix position: Adam Jackson and Andy Frost (FOH and Monitor engineers for Christina Perri) and Shane Bardiau (Twenty One Pilots).

Whether you are a working live sound engineer and just want to brush up on some core concepts or you are a new engineer looking to get into live sound production, this is the place to learn all about live sound in one location.


user ee67bf

A very good overview of live sound presented by a professional sound technician. Good supporting video of a real event that Zach worked. He explained everything very well and I enjoyed the split screen views of his console work. Good job.

Navinder Gill

Zach has been Amazing ! He made it so simple to glide through the entire course ... Learnt Quite a bit .. Specially when I have an Avid Sc48 Board to work with.. Cheers !


Was fortunate to watch this live. Zach clearly is a master of his craft. I am a home studio drummer but learned allot about mixing and sound. Thank you Creative Live and Zach Varnell.