Location Recording (The Scenic Route)

February 10th, 2017

Last night Bryant and I drove out to Warren Ohio to record The Scenic Route at The Lime Tree Sandwich Gallery for his location recording.  The band consists of Rachel Crozier (Lead Vocalist), Laura (Back Up Vocalist), Van (Bass, Acoustic Guitar, Back Up Vocalist) and Thomas (Drums, Cajon).  They performed a mixture of original songs and covers.  The Lime Tree is a rather small (cafe like) so they stripped their songs down to acoustic versions.  They performed 3 sets about 45 minutes each.

We ran their mic lines into a mix splitter box.  This allowed us to create two copies of the same signal.  We did this by plugging the microphones into the microphone splitter inputs.  From there each input has two outputs.  The first set out outputs we sent into the bands Mix Pak7+ Bi-amplifier for their PA (“Public Address”) system.  The outputs of their amp was then plugged into their SHS Audio Speakers.  The second set of outputs from the splitter were plugged into our Focusrite Saffire Pro40 Interface so that the microphone signals could be recorded directly into Pro Tools.

Once all of the gear and microphones were set up we ran into a signal flow issue.  They were getting audio in their PA but we weren’t getting audio into Pro Tools.  Everything appeared to be plugged in correctly,  we triple checked our playback engine and our inputs and even restarted the computer but we couldn’t find the problem and the first set had already begun.  Since everything appeared to be in order the only conclusion I could make was that something was not set correctly in our Saffire Mix Control.  We loaded the hardware settings about 3 times but nothing changed.  I noticed that the “Sync Source” in the Mix Control was set to “ADAT.”  I pointed this out to Bryant who quickly changed it to “Internal” and this solved our problem.  Everything was plugged in correctly but the interface was looking in the wrong place for the signal.  We set our levels and began recording half way through the second song of their set.

From there things went relatively smooth.  Occasionally Pro Tools would display an error message saying there was not enough processing power.  Pro Tools even crashed once causing us to lose two songs in the third set because I did not save the session during recording.  However, we were able to record more than enough material and the band was happy to have a recording of one of their performances.

They were running their mic lines into a “Biamp MixPak 7 Plus” that was used to mix the show and then send the outputs into the speakers (SHS Audio).  They also utilized Shure PG 58 wireless microphones for both singers, an SM 58 for the guitarists vocal mic and we provided a SM 57 for the drummers Cajon (placed in the sound hole).  The acoustic guitar was run through a Whirlwind Passive D.I. Box.

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