Basic tips for mixing an outdoor gig

Discussion in 'Tracking / Mixing / Editing' started by grenos, May 30, 2010.

  1. grenos

    grenos Guest


    First post here.

    A friend asked me if i can be their FOH man for a couple of gigs. I've been working in studios for a while now but I've never really did any live work.

    At the moment i know that this club is "fully equipped" what ever that means...but i don't know how exactly..

    Anyway i was wondering how different is it from a studio situation and what should i have in mind.

  2. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    feedback, standing waves, temp changes, wind and crowd density that greatly effects acoustics and proximity are the main things.
    Moving x-over points, to eq, no reverb (echo is my preference) help compromise for all this above is a another factor.

    In house gigs are all about room acoustics, outdoor are all above but wind and the loss of bass and loosing. Once you get that, the fun begins.
    Being able to pick freq in a split sec and dealing with it, is critical too.

    I did inside for 18 years, 46 weeks a year x 6 nights a week. The last 18 I have been in a controlled environment. IMHO, very different in that respect. Mixing live sound and in the studio are two different animals.

    I should add, if you are a perfectionist, don't take it as serious because live sound is always changing. It can drive you nuts. Over all the years I did this, I eventually learned to choose a spot that was the overall best place to mix and had to live with the sound. You simply can't make it perfect everywhere. The Soundman is in a constant state of trying to control acoustic change and pleasing the crowd.

    Oh, and dealing with musicians that don't have a clue about any of this.

    Have fun
  3. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

    Do you mean outside of the studio, or in the great outdoors?

    There has been another recent discussion here on outdoor jobs.
  4. grenos

    grenos Guest

  5. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

    Hi grenos,

    Welcome to RO by the way!

    I hope you don't think I was trying to give you any grief. I was just looking for some clarification. The subject of your post says 'outdoor gig', then the post goes on to discuss the differences in mixing a band live and mixing in the studio.

    When I saw 'outdoor gig' and a 'fully equipped' club. I was somewhat confused.

    Maybe it's just me, but 'club' implies there are 4 or more walls involved. And what most of us consider outdoor gigs would be 'open-air', tent, or pavillion.

    Again, not trying to bust your chops, just trying make sure we understand what you're asking for - so the folks here can give you the best possible advice.

  6. grenos

    grenos Guest worries...i didn't notice how misleading my post was till you mention it. Sorry about that.. well this gig is taking place in a space just outside of a club...So yeah it is an open-air gig.By saying that the "club" is well equipped i meant that they'll have everything set up so i won't need anything else..(at least i hope so)..

    Again thanks for the tips so far and really sorry about the form of the question.
  7. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    same as Dave, I wasn't sure either. I started replying and then thought... hmm outside maybe so I changed my direction lol .

    Gates, that all depends on the band too. Some musicians play so well and balanced. Some are so screwed and play so loud you'll need gates. IMHO, my opening is where you start and where the basics start, then the toys begin.
  8. grenos

    grenos Guest

    Hm..I think i understand what you saying about the basics. As for the "toys" as i mentioned before the guys in the band are good friends and i think i can persuade them to adjust their monitors and their amp levels.

  9. Demo-dawg

    Demo-dawg Active Member

    studio to live.
    you chaps in the studio are spoiled. Mega amounts of time to get things right. Hahaha
    Welcome to the real world my friend.
    Humidity / wind / crowd capacities / being able to think on the fly.
    every song is different.
    Have fun

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