Old Production Takes From an Old Guy

Month: April 2013 (Page 1 of 4)

Mixing Good Friday

It’s hard to believe Easter weekend was a month ago already. With all the NAB coverage, these posts got pushed off a bit. But they’re still valid (we have 11 months before next Easter…), so I wanted to put them up.



After Christmas, I wrote a couple of posts on my mixing process for large services. If you missed it, you can find them here and here. For Easter, my process is very similar, but Good Friday was a bit different. I decided to try some new things this year, and for the most part, it worked out very well. First, our schedule: We have a single rehearsal for Good Friday. It takes place on Thursday night. Before Good Friday. Since we do a run-through before the 4 PM service, I don’t have a lot of time to do a leisurely virtual soundcheck system. So this year, I cheated.

We do basically the same “no spoken word” service for Good Friday each year. We change out some of the songs for the worship section, but for the most part it’s the same. Since I had last year’s services on the hard drive, I decided to pre-build the whole service, and use what I could from last year to create my starting points. 


Though only numbered to 35, there were a lot of point cues in there. When I renumbered the list after the service, the final tally was 62.

Lots ‘o Snapshots

As I mentioned in my Christmas post, I normally don’t go crazy with snapshots. For for a big service, I will. This year, I ended up with a total of 62. I think I had 8 on the last song alone. For every piece or song that we did last year, I cued up last year’s service and ran through them a few times before the rehearsal. I had already pre-set all my gains, trims, EQ and dynamics based on last year’s show file. Since the band is the same, and my guys are pretty consistent, I figured it would all be pretty close. And it was. We had a few things change more than a few dB, but for the most part, it was dialed. 

For the new songs, I simply created a starting snapshot with the proper channels up, and mixed from there. Because I already had so much pre-built, I was actually able to use the rehearsal as my first pass. I only really had about 2-3 hours the next day to tweak it, so I focused mainly on the new songs. By the time we hit dress, I was only making minor adjustments and fixing mistakes in my recall scope.

Beware the Scope

One of the trickiest things to manage with snapshots is the recall scope. Since everything is saved on every snapshot, it’s really easy to have snapshots start changing things that shouldn’t be if you’re scope is too broad. I had one issue where one of the vocalists kept disappearing from a monitor mix. I finally tracked it down to a snapshot where I turned it off, then forgot to turn it back on. I missed it when I built the rest of the snapshots, so it was recorded as being off the whole time. Once I found it, I bulk-edited the snapshots to change the scope to fix it, so it wasn’t a big deal. But you have to watch for that stuff.

Planning is Key

As I said, I normally don’t go to this level of planning for a normal (or even a big) service. This process worked for me this time because our band plans very well. I already knew the songs, the tempo and who was playing what on each number. If it was a lot more loosey-goosey, this may not have worked. 

Of course, even with a lot of planning, there were things to adjust, fix and create. But what I found was that by pre-building as much as possible, my workload was a lot lower during rehearsal, and the week was a lot more relaxed. 

Now, I have this year’s service on the hard drive, and when we get to next year, if we do the same basic service, I’ll most likely implement the same basic plan. But I will pay more attention to my recall scope settings when I build…

Next time, I’ll go over some other things we did that made the week a little better for the production department. 

Today’s post is brought to you by Heil Sound. Established in 1966, Heil Sound Ltd. has developed many professional audio innovations over the years, and is currently a world leader in the design and manufacture of large diaphragm dynamic, professional grade microphones for live sound, broadcast and recording.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: The Big Recap

So I was thinking it might be helpful to have a post that recapped all the NAB videos in one spot. After two weeks of constant coverage, I’m a little NAB’d out, but this wraps it up and we’ll be back to our regularly scheduled programming next week. Until then, enjoy the Compete Guide to NAB 2013 Coverage! (And I have them all set to open in a new window so you won’t lose the list every time you watch one. You’re welcome.)

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Convergent Design Odyssey The cool 7″ OLED field monitor and recorder. 

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Matrox Monarch A slick little dual-streaming device.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Ross Carbonite eXtreme A Carbonite plus a 144 square router in one box. How cool is that?

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Ross Dashboard Making it ever easier to control, well, just about everything.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Atomos Connect Converters It’s cheaper and easier than ever to convert HDMI to HD-SDI.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Hitachi Z5000 HD Camera Still a great camera for IMAG.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Izotope RX2 Audio Restoration The video guy’s best friend for cleaning up audio.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Ciphertex CX-6K-MD NAS System Lots of secure, affordable storage in a beautiful enclosure. 

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: MOTU HDX-SDI with Thunderbolt Finally, a Thunderbolt SDI interface that has professional features and connections!

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: ProMax One+ Workstation Sick of waiting for the new MacPro? This is a Mac-Daddy Windows workstation.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Padcaster One of our favorite little products of the show. So simple, so useful. It’s now easy to mount your iPad on a tripod.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Yamaha/Steinberg Nuage DAW System Look out ProTools; this is some serious competition. 

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Lectrosonics BOB Dante Break In/Break Out Who doesn’t like a product named BOB? And if you’re using Dante, you’ll love it.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: EZ FX Jib and Crane After shooting a video of this, I really kind of want my EZ FX Jib back…

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Tascam DR-60D At long last, a great solution for getting quality audio when shooting with a DSLR.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Softron Movie Recorder & On The Air HD Video time slipping that some of us can actually afford.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Sonnet xMac mini Server One of the slickest ways I’ve seen to super-charge a Mac Mini.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Roland VC-1 Video Converters We learn that not all mini-converters are created equal. And these look pretty dang good.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Platform Studio Ingest, transcoding, storage, asset management, all in one convenient box. Fantastic!

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Renewed Vision ProVideoServer ProVideoSync is all grown up and is now a full-blown media server. As we discover in, of all places, a parking garage.

Today’s post is brought to you by GearTechs. Technology for Worship is what they do. Audio, video and lighting; if it’s part of your worship service, and it has to do with technology, GearTechs can probably help. Great products, great advice, GearTechs.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Renewed Vision ProVideoServer

ProVideoServer is the newly enhanced and upgraded edition of ProVideoSync. Re-built from the ground up to be a robust, media server, it can play out up to 4 HD streams at once, either synch’ed up or not. The interface is Renewed Vision easy, and the feature set pretty sound. Learn more at the Renewed Vision website.

Today’s post is brought to you by Planning Center Resources. Never overbook again! Check events to see which resources have been reserved. Room setups and custom questions give you all the answers you need in a simple glance. Room Setups: Every individual room page has a new Room Setups section. Add different room setups each with their own image and description on how each room can be setup. When they reserve the room the first thing they are asked is which setup they’d like. This is especially helpful if your rooms serve multiple purposes. For more information, visit Planning Center Resources.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Platform Studio

Building on the powerful Platform line, the Studio is an ingest and transcoding station, a NAS RAID and provides digital asset management. Designed for 1-4 editors, this offers a great way to share and collaborate on creative projects. Learn more at the ProMax website.

Today’s post is brought to you by Planning Center Resources. Never overbook again! Check events to see which resources have been reserved. Room setups and custom questions give you all the answers you need in a simple glance. Resource Heatmap: Each event, room or resource gets its own calendar with darker colors meaning more activity. You can even subscribe to them in your own calendar app or print detailed reports. For more information, visit Planning Center Resources.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Roland VC-1 Video Converters

While mini-converters are everywhere, they are not all created equal. As we see in this demo, some of the popular brands, really mess with the signal. Roland’s new VC-1 series are not only versatile, flexible and affordable, they are super-clean. Learn more at the Roland Website.

Today’s post is brought to you by Planning Center Resources. Never overbook again! Check events to see which resources have been reserved. Room setups and custom questions give you all the answers you need in a simple glance. Track Approvals: Be 100% sure! Every event has approval meters that update in real time. Easily see which resources are pending approval and track activity from within an event discussion. For more information, visit Planning Center Resources.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Softron Movie Recorder & On The Air

Figuring out how to time-slip HD content is one of the biggest challenges for multi-venue churches. Softron has a pretty slick solution that scales as your needs grow. Learn more at their website.

Today’s post is brought to you by the Roland R-1000. The R-1000 is a multi-channel recorder/player ideal for the V-Mixing System or any MADI equipped console or environment. Ideal for virtual sound checks, multi-channel recording, and playback.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Sonnet xMac mini Server

Mac Minis are great little computers. But I/O can be tough since they don’t accept PCIe cards, and sometimes that’s what you need. Sonnet has come up with a great, single space solution that adds two PCIe slots to your Mac Mini, and makes it easy to rack mount to boot. Learn more at http://www.sonnettech.com.

Today’s post is brought to you by Planning Center Resources. Never overbook again! Check events to see which resources have been reserved. Room setups and custom questions give you all the answers you need in a simple glance. Room Setups: Every individual room page has a new Room Setups section. Add different room setups each with their own image and description on how each room can be setup. When they reserve the room the first thing they are asked is which setup they’d like. This is especially helpful if your rooms serve multiple purposes. For more information, visit Planning Center Resources.

CTW NAB 2013 Coverage: Tascam DR-60D

Let’s face it; while DSLRs can produce beautiful video, audio is a big problem. And it’s a problem the DR-60D aims to solve. It’s small, light, and records 24 bit audio at 96KHz. It’s also affordable. Learn more at the Tascam website.

Today’s post is brought to you by Ultimate Ears. Housed within a custom shell designed to fit your ears, high quality multiple armature speaker systems provide an unparalleled sound environment, as well as 26 dB of passive noise cancellation.

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