What You Will Learn

In more detail, here is what you will learn about Live Sound Equipment

Here is the full summary of what you will learn - and most important, WHY you need to learn this stuff and how to make best use of your knowledge.

You will learn a ton of highly important technical stuff on PA systems

I hope that you understand, just by skimming trough the list below, the immense value of things you will learn and start to master.

If you are a sound engineer, band-member or musician, I frankly don´t see how you can perform your very best without these technical skills in sound engineering.

You must give your audience the very best sound-experience.

I´d love to give you all the basic know-how needed to create great live sound.

Chapter 1 – PA system

This is what you will learn:

  • What a PA system is and what PA means, to know exactly what you are dealing with.
  • What front of house and monitors are, to know the right terms when you talk about sound systems, mix sound or rig the PA system.
  • What builds a PA system, to understand its logical structure so you make rigging better, faster and easier.
  • Where PA system parts are usually placed, to be practical and to create great sound.
  • How the signal travels thru the PA system – from microphone to speaker – to understand how to set up, conduct soundcheck, mix sound, and troubleshoot your PA system.
  • How the PA system have evolved in the past and what to expect in the future.

Chapter 2 – Microphones

This is what you will learn:

  • What separates dynamic microphones and condenser microphones, to be able to select the most appropriate microphone in any given situation.
  • How pick-up patterns vary depending on type of microphone, so you can pick up exactly the sound you intend to.
  • How to take advantage of the proximity effect, to create more bottom end for vocals and instruments.
  • How to read polar diagrams, to point out the sensitivity a given microphone has in different directions.

Chapter 3 – Wireless microphone systems

This is what you will learn:

  • How to operate wireless microphones, to avoid dropout, noise-up and interference.
  • Everything about microphones, transmitters and receivers, to understand what it takes to secure top-quality sound.
  • Everything about authorization, frequency band and transmitter powers, to know that you use them legally and still have good reception circumstances.
  • Everything about diversity, antenna cables and antenna placement, to obtain optimal reception conditions.
  • What you must keep in mind when using multiple system simultaneously, to avoid to mess it all up and to reduce problems with dropout, noise-up and interference.

Chapter 4 – DI-boxes

This is what you will learn:

  • How to connect instruments via DI-boxes (as an alternative to mic-ing), to make distinct separation of instruments and reduce the risk of feedback.
  • How to connect DI-boxes, to use the most advantageous method in any given situation.
  • How to use DI-box functions like PAD, hi pass, phase inverter, ground lift, and more, to avoid hum, phase problems and distortion.
  • What the differences are between passive and active DI-boxes, to determine whether phantom power is required or not.
  • What phantom power is and how to use it for DI-boxes and microphones that requires it.

Chapter 5 – Cables and connectors

This is what you will learn:

  • What types of cables are required for a PA system – to give you the needed structure when connecting and rigging your system.
  • How to set up power distribution for PA systems, to obtain required electrical power safety, avoid power shortages and minimize humming.
  • The difference between shielded and unshielded as well as balanced and unbalanced, to avoid humming and electromagnetic interference.
  • How to use digital cables and digital formats, since they have become as regular as analog cables and formats for PA systems – and you have to master them both these days.
  • Why you must to use high-quality speaker cables, to get rid of power losses and losses in treble.
  • How to recognize audio plugs and know how to use them, to make communication flow smoothly and to understand other sound-engineering people.
  • How connectors and plugs are mounted, to troubleshoot, repair or make cables.
  • How to use both analog and digital multi-cables.

Chapter 6 – Mixing consoles

This is what you will learn:

  • How the mixing console is designed and its purpose and possibilities, to easily be able to operate and work with any mixing console in just 10 minutes.
  • How to use all the knobs and buttons, to create great live sound.
  • How to use digital and analog mixing consoles, to become familiar with both types.
  • How to use fixed, sweepable and parametric filters and how to use the equalizer correctly, to produce quality sound.
  • What aux sends does and learn the difference between pre and post aux sends to know the best ways to use of monitors and effects.
  • How to manage the faders, to avoid distortion and unnecessary noise.
  • How to optimize the mixing console's gain structure, to make use of all available headroom while avoiding distortion.
  • How to use pfl, afl and the mixing console's VU meter, to fully take control of input and output levels.
  • How to use hi pass, to create cleaner sound and more distinct bass.
  • How to use panning and routing, to create the stereo image as you want it and route the signal exactly where you want to have it.
  • How to make use of sub-groups to support creative mixing.
  • The correct terms of the mixing console's in and outputs and what they are for, to be able to connect all parts of the equipment as quickly and correctly as possible.
  • How matrices work and to make use of them, to create several mixing setups for extended needs.
  • How VCA faders work and how to make use of their specific properties, to fully take advantage of their benefits.

Chapter 7 – Master equalizers

This is what you will learn:

  • How to connect external equalizers to the mixing console, to suppress annoying feedbacks.
  • How external graphic or parametric equalizers can compensate for short-coming hall acoustics and the PA system's discrepancies regarding perfect frequency response.
  • How to spot differences between analog and digital external equalizers, to choose one or use one you already have in the best way.
  • How to use feedback eliminators, to understand their advantages and limitations.

Chapter 8 – Effect processors

This is what you will learn:

  • How to use different types of reverb – room, hall, church, plate, etc. – to find the most appropriate in any situation.
  • How to become familiar with the reverb's controls – reverb time, pre delay, etc. – to edit the factory preset reverbs as you like.
  • How to become familiar with the delay's controls – delay time, feedback, etc. – to find a musically adapted delay.
  • How to use the tap-funktion and other tricks, to have the delay align to the beat of the music.
  • How to connect effect processors and control them via aux sends, to be able to use one effect processor on more than one channel, or one instrument.
  • How to adjust the mixing-knob to get full control of effect quantity.
  • How to adjust the effect processor's input and output levels, to minimize noise and produce the right quantity of effects.
  • How to become familiar with the operations of chorus and flanger, to take your mixing several steps further.
  • How to use other type of effects as occasional sound effects in special situations under the performance.

Chapter 9 – Dynamic processors

This is what you will learn:

  • Where to connect dynamic processor to make best use of their possibilities.
  • How to use the compressor to increase audibility, level limiting, to give more punch to drums, etc.
  • How to become familiar with the operations regarding the compressor – threshold, ratio, output, attack, etc. – to be able to quickly adjust the compressor in stressful situations.
  • How to deal with the differences between analog and digital compressors to make use of their respective advantages.
  • How to use de-esses to reduces sibilance from certain vocalists.
  • How to use gates to tighten up sound from drums, choirs, etc. or to reduce humming.
  • How to find more ways to use gates to extend creativity.

Chapter 10 – Crossovers

This is what you will learn:

  • How to make use of crossover frequencies and 2-3-4-way crossovers to send the correct frequency to the correct speaker.
  • How to make use of the differences between active and passive crossovers to select and combine power amplifiers and speakers regarding needs and budget.
  • How to operate processor-controlled crossovers to attain full advantage of their potentials.

Chapter 11 – Power amplifiers

This is what you will learn:

  • How to connect and configure the power amplifier to use it in an optimal way for passive divided systems, active divided systems, for monitor system or link or bridge mode.
  • How to become familiar with the power amplifier's output power and the speaker impedance to extract maximum available power – while not exploding the power amplifier.
  • How to become familiar with the power amplifier's protection system to understand why it's needed and how to avoid activating it.
  • How to become familiar with "digital" power amplifiers, to avoid being trapped by misleading marketing.

Chapter 12 – Speakers

This is what you will learn:

  • How speaker drivers for different frequency ranges are constructed, their properties and designs, to understand how the sound behaves when you combine and arrange speakers.
  • How to become familiar with different enclosure designs – sealed box, bass reflex enclosure, horn speaker – to spot their advantages and drawbacks when using or choosing speakers.
  • Why you must understand the speaker dispersion to cover the audience area with great live sound.
  • How to become familiar with the speaker's power rating, sensitivity and impedance to select equipment or connect existing equipment properly to obtain desired sound pressure level – and to realize equipment limitations to avoid damage.
  • How to make sure you have correct speaker polarity, to avoid phase problems and loss of bass.
  • How to connect speakers and get correct impedance, to avoid discovering short-coming of power amplifiers output power or, worse, overloading the power amplifier.
  • How to become familiar with the field of use regarding different speakers and how they should be rigged, to create best possible live sound covering everyone in the audience.
  • How to become familiar with different types of monitor speakers and their placement, to increase audibility for musicians on stage.
  • How to become familiar with in-ear-monitoring as a complement or alternative to traditional monitor speakers, to furthermore increase audibility and reduced the amount of equipment on stage.

Chapter 13 – About the equipment

This is what you will learn:

  • How to balance cost and quality regarding PA system, to choose the most appropriate equipment for each event.
  • How to maintain quality and reasons for doing so, and how to stand up for your decision or chose to turn down the job because of inferior or low-quality equipment.
  • How to avoid over-dimensioning the PA system, to minimize back-pain from heavy lifting and to keep costs on budget.

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