Category: System Optimization

Audio Analyzer Mythbusting

Audio Analyzer Mythbusting

The wonderful silver lining of our present situation is that the internet is being flooded with all sorts of seminars, online classes, training videos, and the like. I’ve got a bunch of stuff bookmarked to dive into and it feels a bit like trying to drink from a firehouse. However, I’ve stumbled across a few …

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Measurement Microphone Comparison

Measurement Microphone Comparison

Audio and acoustics guru Ethan Winer has a lovely measurement mic comparison on his RealTraps website. Here are some of my own tests as an expansion of that idea. The mics used for these tests are the ones I happened to have in my kit at the time: two iSEMcon EMX-7150 (not sold as a matched pair) …

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Twenty-Minute Theater Tuning

Twenty-Minute Theater Tuning

Such is the reality of things that we often have very little time to wrestle a sound system into a performance-ready condition. Here is a tuning I did today of a 1200-seat theater that took twenty minutes start to finish, and most of that time was running around with a microphone. A lot of the …

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Black Box Theater Spatial System Tuning

Black Box Theater Spatial System Tuning

This week I am involved in an event featuring onstage puppetry with some unique technical challenges. The production was originally staged in a small black box theater with carefully controlled sightlines. Adapting the touring version of the production to the 700-seat theater required an out of the box approach – or more literally, an in …

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Measurement Methods Explained (RTA? FFT? TDS? WTF?)

Measurement Methods Explained (RTA? FFT? TDS? WTF?)

This is a basic explanation of the common measurement methods. This is brand-agnostic, with specific products mentioned only for historical context – we are concerned here with what’s happening under the hood – how the data is obtained and displayed, and what that means for our work. It’s also not exhaustive – there are decades …

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User Question: Smaart Practice

User Question: Smaart Practice

I received a message from Jedidia, a church audio engineer in Africa, asking if I could look over his measurement data and talk about time alignment between the two sources. Here is Jedidia’s measurement setup: And here are his traces for his main and his sub: Thank you to Jedidia for allowing me to share …

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Exploring Large-System Level Variance Compromises

Exploring Large-System Level Variance Compromises

Our heroes find themselves in a larger reverberant space (an armory, actually) which is, of course, the best environment for events requiring speech intelligibility. PA is twelve dual-15 boxes per side with a sub “mono block” on the ground front and center. The optimization you see here was masterminded by my friend David, whom I …

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Control Booth Monitor Calibration

Control Booth Monitor Calibration

I don’t like mixing from within a booth any more than the next person, and for any serious audio work, I will fight hard for a FOH mix position. However, for “talking head” events or playback-based dance shows, sometimes a booth mix position is a reality. (In the case of the dance shows, it’s actually …

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