LA MONDAY: By Simon Byrne
In the world of networking it is clear that AVB is becoming mainstream. I noticed that many of the manufacturers such as Meyer Sound (including their new Galaxy processors), Avid and L’Acoustics are now producing products that support AVB. 4 years ago, I noticed that Dante was gaining adoption at AES and I’m noticing the same this year with AVB. Exciting times!
AES has streams of seminars, the Live Sound Expo, Project Studio Sound, Game Audio, Sound for Film and so on. It is impossible to get to them all as there ended up being around 160+ sessions over the 4 days.
You have to choose carefully! That is hard because the quality of topics and the presenters is impressive. Here is just a taste –
Australian audio royalty Howard Page participated in several sessions. He was senior at Jands in the 70’s and 80’s before joining Showco in the US (which was later acquired by Clair).
Nowadays Howard is the director of Engineering at Clair which involves popping in on tours that are having “challenges” as well FOH for Sting and his Symphonicity shows.
Howard’s audio knowledge is colossal. After all, he designed and built some of the best desks and electronics around in the early years and he is still heavily involved in most of Clair’s innovations. That combined with his touring experience (Van Halen, Sade, Bee Gees amongst others) possibly makes him the leading live sound authority in the world. And he is an Aussie!
I asked Howard what he thought was important for the next generation of soundo’s. “Get comfortable with every single digital desk out there as they all have learning curves and get comfortable with networking.”
Another great presenter was Michael Santucci from Sensaphonics in Ear Monitoring Solutions. Michael is a Doctor of Audiology and is passionate about preserving artist’s hearing. Consequently, he has researched and developed technologies to accurately measure exposure and designed IEM products with that in mind. He has concerns about the hearing health because he has done research that actually measures levels in the ear canal of professional users of IEM’s because artists are running them at the same level as when they used to run wedges.
His major concern? Artists that only use 1 IEM combined with wedges. This is because the binaural link is broken which in the mind of the user, makes it 6dB softer so artists are turning their gear up to make up that 6dB. This in turn halves the safe exposure time.
Back to gear!
Waves stand was popular so it wasn’t until today that I finally got my hands on the eMotion LV1 Live Mixer today which was released earlier this year.
The LV1 uses the Waves Soundgrid servers as the brains controlled by either a PC or Mac application as the surface/controller. At the stand, they were using 2 Dell touchscreens running Windows 10.
I find the thought of running a show that relies on the stability of Windows really scarey but the system is designed so that the audio continues to flow if the PC fails (just no control). The setup I saw had 2 Soundgrid servers so it did have seamless backup if a server failed so from that point of view, it can be very robust.
The big advantages are the very tight integration of the Waves plugins which means ultra low latency, combined with a very small footprint.
To complement the Waves mixing system, Sound Studio UK have released a range of Soundgrid based Stageboxes. 8 in 8 out, 16 in 8 out and 24 in 12 out versions.
The trade exhibtion ended today so DPA will have to get the piano movers in to move their piano out. The big desk manufacturers have the same issue but I managed to get some photos before it closed.