Passion 2016 makes Waves across three venues
USA: A significant production challenge presented itself at Passion 2016 in the form of live syncing between the Philips Arena and Infinite Energy Center in Atlanta, Georgia, and Houston Texas’ Toyota Center. FOH engineer Stephen Bailey utilised Waves’ digital signal processing solutions for mixing sound at the annual conference, which was linked by fibre with satellite redundancy.
With a live host at each venue and several occasions in which they would converse with each other, and the desks at each arena possessing a variety of audio inputs from the other two locations, Mr Bailey was able to clean up the dialogue channels using the Waves Duggan Automixer plugin. ‘This gave extra control over how much audience level we could add independently from the other venues into our local PA or broadcast mix,’ he explains. ‘The result sounded too good to be true. It brought massive energy in from the other locations, making it feel like we were all part of one unified event.’
‘For our hosts, I used the Waves Dugan Automixer for the first time in plugin form, adds broadcast engineer Chris Briley. ‘It was great for keeping the arena sound out of the host mics. Every time a host spoke it went through three different PAs. That sound would leak right into the other host mics and make for a very echoey sound. The Dugan Automixer significantly tightened up the sound and kept me from having to ride faders or set gates for each mic.’
A total of nine DiGiCo SD7 consoles were implemented by Rat Sound, which for the third year provided the audio systems and design, headed up by Matt Manix of Method Production, with three units per venue at FOH, monitor and broadcast positions. In conjunction with the SD7s, Waves SoundGrid servers were used to handle programme content and artists Matt Redman, Chris Tomlin and the Passion Band, while a couple of Midas Pro9 consoles were employed for Crowder, Hillsong United and Rend Collective.
‘Each of the nine SD7 consoles had two Waves SoundGrid Extreme or Waves Server One servers with Waves SD7 Pro Show bundles and the Waves Dugan Automixer,’ continues Mr Bailey. ‘We also had a DiGiGrid MGB audio interface for each venue’s broadcast desk, with the capability of recording 128 channels for recording backups using Waves Tracks Live. There were nine sound engineers, all using Waves plugins. Primary recordings were made in the video trucks. Secondary recording rigs were set up at the broadcast consoles using DiGiGrid MGB units with laptop computers running Waves Tracks Live, capable of pulling down 128 channels at 48K.’
‘Using the Waves C6 with a custom mastering preset inserted on an aux master for in-ear mixes allowed precise control and “glue” for my mixes,’ remarked Mr Manix. ‘With just a few simple tweaks, I can quickly adjust the C6 to be tailored for vocalists or instrumentalists.