Scaling Audio with Wireless Workbench 6

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A2Z Productions

Scaling Audio with Wireless Workbench 6 Get the latest updates on our Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/a2z_productions/ Chuck Levins: https://chucklevins.com/

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All right my name is brandon peltz here with a2z productions and we're gonna take a look at the uh video rack here but really what it means to scale when we have to do large audio what you see here is 16 qlxd wireless receivers and we have a bunch of handhelds here as well some more handhelds in some drawers the reason for this Video today is we have some hybrid events coming up that actually need a lot of audio support so we're pulling this out testing it upgrading firmware and we thought it'd be a great time to show you guys how we scale a box with four microphones to a 16 microphone plus system these boxes are boxes of four and we have a signal distribution Amplifier at the top that means that all four of these microphones the antennas on the back get wired up into this single rack here and then this guy has two antennas that are amplified all right so it's basically a booster so that means you know the handheld can go farther from the receiver and not lose Signal things like that so we have three identical racks here makes it really easy to stack and of course we love our trip lite power strips with all the outlets on the front definitely makes setting up and plugging things like a laptop and chargers and whatnot even things like a network switch makes it really easy to set up quickly let's walk around to The back where i can show you the network switches and how this thing is all set up so back here you can see i have a network switch on top they are not currently installed in the racks but that's fine um we don't usually have to network all of these together but when we do larger shows when we're doing eight plus microphones it actually makes it easier to network them all together And to use software to scan all the frequencies the way this works is they're all networked in so i have a total of three network switches here they're just little tp-link eight port network switches nothing fancy unmanaged right so they all have a ethernet cable plugged into the back of each receiver all right as well as the ones inside the rack here then all of that goes to a single Network cable that gets plugged into my laptop the key for networking all of these together is speed once you network them all in you can then monitor all 16 of them through the software scan frequencies it just speeds up the whole process if you can connect to all of them at once versus individually all right so wireless workbench six it's The most up-to-date software from shore now i should tell you that unless you have capable mic receivers like the qlxd or the ulxd series probably some other series as well maybe the slx digital series you'll not be able to use wireless workbench because you need to network into the receiver and not all of their models usually the cheaper Models don't have that capability what you see here is wireless workbench and we are in the inventory tab right here i can see all 16 of my microphones and you can see that they're all labeled individually and things like that this is great it just means i'm connected to all of them and i can see status and whatnot i can see what group and channel they're On or the frequency in particular but what's cool is when we can start getting fast with everything and scan all of the frequencies set them all with just a few clicks so that's over here in this other tab called frequency coordination and so what you want to do is you could pick any of these microphones here on the side i can't make that bigger but i could pick all of them i could pick one of Them because they're all on the same band the gh50 band i believe yeah the h50 band i don't need to select all of them to scan i can just pick one specific receiver scan all the frequencies that are in its range and then use that data to set frequencies for all the other mics so i'm just gonna select one here and i'm gonna go down i'm gonna hit scan With one source all right so you see the software taking place and it's actually scanning through let's see what is that 534 megahertz i believe might be millihertz but megahertz all the way up to 598 megahertz so it's scanning for open free it's actually right now just scanning to see what's out there what it's picking up what it can see and hear and once it's done scanning It will then allow me to choose open frequencies that it suggests you see two lines here you see a red line and an orange line the red line is the exclusion threshold basically that means if the receiver picks up anything that is above that red line it's going to be like nah i don't want to use it all right something else is using it something else is on it And i'm just going to avoid that altogether the scan peak threshold is more like if it actually connects or finds something on that frequency and like establishes a connection it's like whoa i don't want to establish any connections to anything i'm going to back off so that's what that orange line is it's rare that you ever get into that orange line When you're initially scanning unless you do have a bunch of microphones currently open and not connected to anything so it's about done scanning now and let's go ahead and uh set find some open channels for our 16 microphones and then set them to all of these guys here all right so you can see right away it found me a couple uh frequencies that are in use and it's Showing me those here the next step is to select frequencies from inventory so i'm gonna over here on this right hand side hit select frequencies from inventory all frequencies from inventory so i'm going to hit ok and all of a sudden it just found a bunch of frequencies that i'm currently using on these mics right and so what i want to do is i want to Analyze i want to i think it's analyzed yeah it's analyze and see which ones are open and which ones are not so i'm going to click analyze here and it's saying that all of my frequencies are currently good to go nothing's interfering with any of the current ones would i rather because i've already run this test today what i'd rather do is i'm going to hit calculate and it's going to find me New frequencies different from the ones i'm currently on and so it has just found that and all of those are also compatible with my current mic system which is great so now that i have found new frequencies let's go ahead and send them to all of these guys here i'm going to hit assign and deploy it's going to say okay we're about to assign these frequencies to these Microphones and i could swap these around if i want to and i could say you know what i really want to put that one there and i want to put this one here not a big deal for me but if you are using specific people and you say oh i want to have my let's say my main singer or the most the ceo of the company i want to make sure he's on the most wide open Frequency range so that way there's no or the least amount of risk of interference for him you can make those swaps here but once you're satisfied you can just click deploy to inventory one quick note you see these stars three stars two stars the higher the number of stars the better the frequency option right don't be discouraged if you see two or three Uh it might go all the way up to five i'm not sure i usually hit around three stars which is great i haven't had any issues there so i'm going to hit deploy to inventory and all of a sudden you can see all these guys are flashing all right that means they are accepting their new frequency i can go ahead and i can do that again for you one sec here let me scan for some new frequencies Here and i will do that once more let's calculate some new frequencies awesome assign and deploy deploy to inventory so you're seeing them all receiving the brand new frequencies now if you are if you've ever used qlxes before but you have not used wireless workbench most likely you're using group and channel numbers to assign mics to a frequency Uh when you use wireless workbench and kind of higher end systems group and channel are too obscure they're too general for this system so if you look in the upper right hand corner here of any of these mics you'll see a specific frequency number down to three decimal places um that is a more specific frequency than just saying oh give me a group give me a channel and make sure the channels aren't You know overlapping the channels are kind of a range of frequencies and then it kind of picks one in there whereas these are very specific so you can you could get closer you can have two frequencies kind of in the same channel range um if you really wanted to but this is it freaked me out the first time i ever did this and i thought everything was broken because all these numbers were blank They're supposed to be blank all right microphones all frequency set we're good all we now have to do is connect the actual handheld microphone to this guy i'm going to show you how to do that on the qlxds it's pretty simple all right we keep all of our mics and pouches here so what's great is you don't actually have to take off any coverings like you do on some Other systems the rf receiver is right here so what you do is you're going to check check all right i'm not connected to any microphones makes sense uh sorry any receivers so i'm going to hit sync on here and i'm going to hold the rf uh receiver on this microphone up to it and then it's going to sync i will do it so you can see i'm going to hit sync hold this up here It flashes good it made a connection now i am talking and i am receiving signal into my mic you do have to do this for all 16. you will have to go click here and click there and sync them up but that's pretty much it now you're good to go you would basically repeat this process the sync for all 16 mics if you have Lavaliers belt pack microphones same exact process nothing changes and let's go ahead and show you a quick hack on how i make microphones especially having 16 of them open at the same time let's say i have 16 people on stage how to make that a little easier and reduce risk of feedback obviously we're using the touch mix and the touch mix has the ability To be controlled by an ipad and can i actually do a screen recording on this let's do that now that i can see that i have a microphone coming into the system here uh what i'm going to do is i'm going to set a compressor as well as a gate on it so that it sounds better and i'm not getting a bunch of background noise when i don't want to what is a gate we'll start with a gate a gate Looks like this and basically what this means is that there is a certain threshold that is needed in order to make any sort of sound come out or through the the system so right now i'm at a very low threshold it's it's not really picking me up but as i get louder you can see the decibels are going up so what this gate allows you to do is it says Once you get over this looks like negative 35 decibels right once the microphone can pick up negative 35 decibels it's going to start pushing it through the system amplifying that voice but if it's reading stuff that's below negative 35 decibels like negative 45 negative 60 whatever you know maybe it's the air conditioner background noise someone else talking on another microphone but it can kind of pick it up It's not going to amplify that sound through the mic it's only going to amplify sound that is above negative 35 decibels it's really easy to change on a touch mix on most mixers so you're going to go here and you can raise or lower the threshold and as well as the attack and then the release the attack means how quickly it's going to amplify the Signal right is it going to the second or the millisecond it hears a sound that's in its threshold start amplifying it or do you want to wait a couple more milliseconds before you start amplifying that signal to make sure it wasn't just a fluke right i usually set my attack very early as soon as someone starts talking i want to make sure i'm amplifying that Their voice um the release i usually do a pretty long release right because it once it stops listening to or or getting the decibels it needs it'll start fading out um but i want to make sure if they're gonna say um or go below their threshold then i'm not immediately going to like cut out their mic and then cut back in Cut out so that's why i have uh the threshold attack and release set where i do don't worry too much about the attenuation it really is just for like once they stop talking how long are you going to hold on before you actually cut off like all together the release is going to fade it down the attenuation is going to cut it out all together so Not don't harp too much on that so that that's a gate and it helps a lot to reduce background noise um and last thing i'll show you here is a compressor uh this current compressor is not great it basically is just like shutting out any peaks that happen immediately so i don't know the compressor that i would set would probably have a higher threshold like this probably something Closer to that that ratio seems like a lot again i would be listening to how this actually sounds uh but this might look like a compressor that i would set it basically is going to avoid peaks or really loud noises right off the back if someone immediately starts screaming in it's going to suppress that immediate like loudness and then slowly bring it up it's so you can Reduce you know big pops and yells or dropping a mic and things like that it just helps to makes it sound a little nicer and doesn't hit you in the face as much if you want to learn more about you know settings on a touch mix mixer how we eq our mics out and things like that how we reduce feedback a gate is a great way to do that but when you get into an eq Again that's a whole separate video worth of stuff um we can kind of talk about that and and walk through that but that is uh that's that for the system here um this was definitely more based on audio and how we kind of scale audio when we do a gig i know i'm going to get questions about this so let me cover it okay brandon that's great you have Everything coming in to your mixer how do you get that sound going into your atem extreme so you can then stream it and we can see here if i talk on this mic i don't currently have anything going into the atem here and so one one reason is because i don't actually have the mix pulled up what i do is i come out of this board a quarter inch Which is actually this cable right here okay so that's a that's a quarter inch uh connector to a 3.5 millimeter adapter right and then i have this red 3.5 millimeter this is actually a monster cable all right so i have that guy plugged into an aux output the reason i have it as an aux output is because sometimes i want to send a different maybe a boosted signal to the atem Uh separate from let's say speakers i have in the room so my main mix is for the rooms for the speakers in the room the live in person audience then i have an aux usually set to post fader which means that anything i do on my main mix is going to happen to my sub mix my aux out and that then routes to the a10 mini extreme here Now i did have to pull this extreme out and i'm actually missing the cable so i'll just pull that through here it's usually all wired underneath but this is the cable this is the cable that routes all of the audio going into this touch mix into the atem extreme i just plug this into mic one and then i make sure that in my settings i actually am uh have a line level going into mic one And now you can see i actually do have uh levels coming in it seems pretty hot right and there's a couple ways i can turn that down i can turn that down on the mic itself right and so now it's not coming in as hot i could turn it down on the aux output i have here i have mine labeled as atem mix and i could pull the master down there and you can see that i have less levels Going in i could boost the signal here i always try to keep everything at unity as much as possible unity just means zero decibels and so if i'm getting clean audio in at unity i love it i'm good to go um by the way if you're doing recording if you're new to the a10 recording stuff uh keeping your levels in the yellow Like barely tapping the red that's a great place to keep it my background from live events audio was not to have it in yellow or red yellow or red meant that you were like getting close to blowing the speaker peeking things like that but in broadcast audio you want to keep it in the yellow i've definitely started out keeping things in the green and the audio is just Way too low you couldn't hear enough i do have a four xlr channel snakes for all these guys to keep things clean so that's how that and we we keep we have a lot of uh standardization going on uh we have our colors that are always in the same order every time makes things faster you know the magnet mounts help for standardization more Hacks oh a new hack that we're doing is because we're doing a lot more outdoor events because of covid so over here we have a battery usually we run generators and we have a lot of generators up on the shelves in our warehouse yes we're in our warehouse you probably noticed from the beginning and so this battery i'm doing a stress test on it now Just seeing how long it can run a simple mic system no speakers nothing like that if we're you know out where there's no power outdoors parking lots things like that we do have battery-powered speakers that we can run wirelessly with our in-ear monitors but we just want to make sure we can run our house system this guy has another 9.2 hours left of runtime on it and it's at 56 percent i started today at around 6am and it said 20 hours at 100 so that sounds great to me uh i'm again i'm not pulling a lot with these microphones but this battery this is a yeti 3000 x made by goal zero pretty much a plug and play unit it is super expensive for what it is uh it's not necessarily the best possible thing you could buy however it is very simple it's plug and Play has a lot of really cool features as well as an app to connect to it so you can monitor levels and see things like that a legitimate display so not like couple dots but like it actually tells me 9.2 hours left it shows me a battery percentage it shows me what my input and output wattage is even lots of cool tricks and tips like hey it can be More efficient when plugging in a laptop or something because it has the usbs right on the front dc versus ac power so this is going to be super cool it's going to be something that we bring with us when we know ahead of time we're going to need to have a battery backup maybe we just have it on certain gigs just in case especially if we have any outdoor sets this will definitely run like A speaker too if we have a satellite speaker that we want to run completely wirelessly that isn't battery powered this thing will work so pretty small pretty compact very powerful very happy with it and yeah so i'm gonna i'm gonna run it to maybe about 20 percent you shouldn't run these things to zero so i'm just going to run it decently low and then charge it back up All right i just want to give a huge shout out to randy over at chuck levins washington music center uh right here in maryland dc virginia area uh pretty much all the gear you see here we've probably obtained it from them they have awesome prices and they always take really good care of us just want to give them a huge shout out we will put a link to their store below and feel free to hit them up Whenever you need stuff like this if you guys have any questions about anything you've seen here please just go ahead and put it in the comments below i hope you enjoyed all the tech talk i can totally nerd out about these things pretty much all the time wireless workbench six if you have questions again put in the comments we might do a whole video on that and that's how we kind of scale our Systems here for when we do larger gigs versus smaller gigs so i hope you enjoyed i'm brandon from adz productions thanks so much feel free to subscribe if you want

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