[This just in from Kirk Farmer of the Dirty Rumors, who are living the PreSonus life to the fullest!]
Thanks for the invitation to be included in your blog. We are called Dirty Rumors. We’re a quasi rock band / jam band from Roanoke, VA comprised of Kirk Farmer, (Me) on lead vocal and guitar, Tim (Caesar) O’Sullivan on lead guitar, Scott Sutton on bass, Ben Hite on keys, and Thomas Wilson on drums. We’re more of a jam band than anything. Our live performances are heavy on the long instrumental jams with variety of influxes including rock, funk, blues and county. We actually have a large collection of live tracks that can be streamed from our website. Most of which were also recorded using the same equipment and software we used to record the EP. The EP is called Unity Gain and was released online through TuneCore.com in January.
I was originally introduced to PreSonus when I worked as a recording engineer in Raleigh, NC. I saw a demo of the StudioLive 16.4.2 at a show put on by one of your distributors in Greensboro. I was particularly impressed with it’s ease of use and by the transparency of the preamps.
I few years later, I relocated to Roanoke,VA and brought on a business partner named Nate Potter in order to expand my mastering studio, K-14 Studios service offerings to include mobile, multi-track recording. Nate was also a big fan of the Presonus gear and owned a 16.4.2, and also introduced me to Studio One.
Tim and I formed Dirty Rumors in September of 2012. When we made the decision to record our EP, it was only logical that Nate and I produce and engineer the project using the PreSonus gear that we had been using to record our clients with.
As mentioned before, we primarily use the 16.4.2 for tracking. One of the great things about this setup is its mobility. All we need is the board, the laptop, the snake and some mics and we’re in business—literally! We use Capture to track everything, including overdubs. Once we get the tracks back to the studio, we use a FirePod as a speaker/headphone interface, and mix the sessions on Studio One. We also use Studio One’s project page for mastering.
The things we like most about the PreSonus hardware are the quick setup time and the preamp quality. With other digital mixers, we can potentially spend a significant amount of time just getting the board settings where we want them. Using any outboard gear just adds to the process. With the 16.4.2, we can be powered up and signal and level checked in less than 10 minutes.
As far as the preamps are concerned, the transparency and gain insures a good recording the first time, every time. This is paramount when recording a live show where we might not get a second take. They also allow for a great deal of flexibility during the mixdown process. We can make a lot more creative decisions about the overall sound of the project when we don’t have to contend with preamp coloration introduced by your hardware.
On the software side, Studio One is undoubtedly the most flexible and user-friendly DAW I’ve ever used. It’s intuitive, powerful, and very easy on my CPU. In the past, I’ve primarily used Pro Tools and Audition, both for their different strengths: Pro Tools for tracking and Audition for mastering. Studio One combines the best of both worlds in one very dynamic suite.
Nate and I are currently working on a video project for a band from Lynchburg, VA. Again, we used the PreSonus gear for the tracking, and continue to use Studio One for the post- production processing. Our last major project was the Unity Gain EP, which we created ourselves from start to finish. Dirty Rumors is rumored to be recording a concert video in May at the new amphitheater in downtown Roanoke. We plan to use the 16.4.2, tied in to the FOH board through a splitter snake to record the audio from the show. We’re also talking about recording a full length album this summer, and PreSonus is along for the ride every step of the way!
Mixer aficionados the world over could always stand to learn a new trick or two, and at the rate that technology changes, sometimes we all find ourselves with a little catching up to do. Good thing, then, that Alfred Music has recently released the StudioLive Mixer handbook, which has a little something for everyone. If you’re using one of the classic StudioLive mixers or the new AI mixers, you will find something of value as the book covers both! Furthermore, it’s broken down into a simple three-tier arrangement: a general overview, live sound, and studio recording—including a nice bonus chapter on mic placement.
You’ll also find info on getting the most out of using your StudioLive with external devices like your laptop and iPhone, feedback elimination, remote iPad control, and recording your shows.
Here’s a couple freebies to get ya hooked:
With the publication of this tome, renowned engineer/producer Bobby Owsinski has cemented his stature as a dyed-in-the-wires StudioLive expert. After all, he wrote the book on it, right?
The kind sports at Hero’s Last Mission put together this exceptional video describing their workflow with the StudioLive 16.4.2. They are using the board to its fullest in both the studio and onstage, taking advantage of features like QMix personal monitoring and scene recall for saving board settings appropriate to multiple venues. Furthermore, they record live shows to Capture and then mix later in Studio One!
Hero’s Last Mission is taking advantage of the full PreSonus solution. Are you?
Even a meager home studio is littered with more gains, trims, volumes, gazintas and gazoutas than one can know what to do with. All of this sequential amplification can lead to clipped gazintas, noisy tones, and, if you’re not careful, tinnitus. So how do you figure out all of your input and output levels?
Properly gain staging your recording devices is critically important, and only a little tricky. Leave it to Gear Addicts to demystify it all—just for you!
Well, just for you and anybody with Internet access. But still. Worthwhile viewing.
The StudioLive mixers are an ideal choice for running audio for your theate productions!
StudioLive mixers are ideal for the theatre because they are easy to use, allow you to save and recall production scenes, and the integrated software tools allow anyone to run sound. This video demonstrates how school and community theatres can benefit from using a StudioLive to enhance their production and rehearsals.
[This just in from Sean Walker, Seattle audio engineer and boating enthusiast. He recently took his friends, and his StudioLive 16.4.2, for a spin out on Lake Washington during the city’s annual Seafair festival. Oh, and he also brought his band, and remotely mixed the band’s performance on the water while mixing via StudioLive Remote on his iPad. From a floating trampoline. Seriously. Pics follow.]
It’s August in Seattle, and that means two things: less rain than normal and our annual Seafair celebration! Seafair is a week-long celebration culminating on the first Sunday in August with the H1 Unlimited Hydroplane races and an air show over the race course on lake Washington! The race course is surrounded by a log boom on the outside perimeter to keep pleasure crafts from getting run over by a 200 MPH hydro. Now, being the festive sort, we often fill the log boom with boats and party like it’s Mardi Gras! This year, however, we outdid ourselves with the help of our friends at PreSonus, Audix, Sennheiser and QSC. This year, our client and I loaded a Yacht with a 6 Kilowatt generator, a PreSonus Studiolive 16.4.2, four QSC KW181 subs, four KW122 tops, and some K12s for monitors, and invited our friends in the fantastic cover band, The Herding Cats to THROW DOWN ON TOP OF THE YACHT!
Naturally, this presented a unique set of challenges. There were to be identical bow and stern PA rigs (you don’t want any survivors… I mean, anyone to miss the show), monitors for the band, and a wireless transmission to another yacht. So, we set up the speakers, ran power and signal, then ran a snake to the top of the vessel where the band would play as I mixed from inside the cabin. Thankfully for me, this was not my StudioLive’s first rodeo. Rather than the old guess-and-check method I’m used to when there is no proper FOH position, I got to relax on the floating trampoline behind the Yacht and mix the show, via StudioLive Remote on my iPad, iced tea in hand! If that isn’t a win, I don’t know what is! Also, the StudioLive’s ability to link Auxiliary sends to stereo made the wireless transmission to the other yacht a breeze!
The Microphones were all Sennheiser and Audix, except for an RE20 on the kick. Vocals all ran wirelessly. An E965 for Jon, who is the drummer/lead singer. E835’s were deployed for Mike and Rick’s backing vocals. Mike’s Fender Twin amp was miked with an E609 in the standard “Yeah, that’s just right” spot where the dust cap meets the cone. A DI was used for Rick’s bass to keep things “simple.” Since Jon thinks he’s some kind of Bonham, and drenches his drums with pitchers of water for an AWESOME spectacle during the bands Led Zeppelin melody, durable is the name of the game here. Snare and toms were Audix F-series with a Sennheiser E901 plate in the kick and an RE20 for kick out.
The day went off without a hitch and the band sounded fantastic! Most importantly, we had fun and that’s what this game is all about!
A HUGE thank you to Presonus, Sennheiser, Audix and QSC for making fantastic gear in both function and sound. We could not have pulled this off nearly as easily without their help!
The Herding Cats are Jon Bolton, Mike Mattingly and Rick Lovrovich. If you find yourself in the Seattle area, you owe it to yourself to catch them in action!
Sean Walker is a Freelance Audio Engineer in the Seattle area.
The StudioLive family of digital mixers have become a sonic solution for houses of worship around the globe. We recently compiled this great series of testimonials from live sound engineers who rely on the StudioLive for their events. Thanks much to everyone who had a hand in this!
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