Thursday, June 14, 2007

Aviom In Ear Monitoring

Equipping is one of the “E’s” I would like to refer to from time to time. So, every once in a while I will recommend different pieces of gear that I or someone I know personally has used and found useful.

A little over two years ago some of our tech crew and I decided to do our own install in our then brand new Worship center. It was a big daunting task, but God had put all the right people in place to pull it off. It was amazing what our team was able to bring to the table with experience and innovation.

Our new worship center was an 800+ seat auditorium. We wanted the ability to use video image magnification and media. We needed a good sound system, lighting and projection system. We also wanted the ability to feed it to other parts of the building as needed. There were certain parts of the install we hired out, some of it turned out fantastic, other parts we wanted to change after being in here 2 weeks. It seems to be the way we techie types are, never satisfied with the status quo. Anyway, I won’t spend a lot of time on the task at this point, but would like to tell you about one of the improvements we made and how it is still working after two years.

In-ear monitoring with personal mixers is the berries! We made the move to the Aviom personal mixers over two years ago and absolutely love them. In the overall scheme of our install, the cost of buying the Aviom system was about the same as buying monitors and amps, not to mention the savings on cable costs. The install was a snap!

It has also cleaned up a lot of playing and singing. You can’t hide anymore! Sometimes less experienced players and singers will tend to hide in a band and hope that nobody hears any of the bad notes. As a leader, I can’t help them if I can’t hear them. When things get rockin’ quite frankly, it is hard to tell if we’re all tracking together using amps and floor monitors, or just listening to the sound in the room.

In general, most rhythm players love them, I think it’s because most players these days aren’t afraid of technology, and if I can hear everything more clearly that is extremely helpful. Singers however, have been a mixed bag. Most have grown to love them. Finding the right ear bud size and style is a challenge, but one that you can overcome with a little experimenting. Some training on mixing and panning, where to place their voice in their overall mix is a must. I think many singers are more accustomed to using floor monitors and blasting their voice over the rest of the band, or trying to scream over the top of the band not being able to hear themselves at all.

I play mostly bass when I lead. In larger rooms, bass can be one of the most difficult instruments to hear. The natural response when you can’t here is to turn up, and then it becomes that game…enough said. The Aviom allows you to hear what you want to hear as well as what you may not need to hear. I particularly like that I have actually started playing with much more finesse and can communicate better with my drummers.

I recommend you check them out if you’re looking at monitoring systems. There are several places to look for info. I recommend and use and if you would like further input, email me or call my main man, bud, Barry Pike @ 877-223-2221. He is extremely competent and won’t steer you wrong.

All this talk might sound shallow to the non-musician. But I believe we should always give our best offerings to the Lord! This is absolutely one tool that will help to offer up the most excellent offering possible.


Barry Pike said...

Thanks, Steve! Good article!

IzzyBeth said...

This is me - telling you, its time for an update! :-)