Check It Yourself

 I had a nice afternoons teaching in Birmingham this month. For a change I actually had to do a practical demonstration. Anyone who teaches will know this is what we all dread. The simple task you have done many times before will some how inexplicably go wrong!

The kind and tolerant Birmingham students patiently waited as the seemingly ‘patched’ desk was ‘re-patched’ to pass audio. They then had to wait for me to remember where all the controls were on the Midas Pro2. Luckily they were able to follow my digital ineptitude on a large screen. However other things worked well. My drummer, lecturer Izzy MacLachan, demonstrated nicely how different you hit the drums when playing individually rather than as a kit. His powerful hitting, when asked to play some straight time, was considerably quieter, better and more dynamic, demonstrating that point nicely. I even managed to demonstrate how phase can radically change the sound across a few channels of drums. However I broke some of my own cardinal rules!

I trusted the system to be set up without checking. When asked why one side of the PA sounded louder I had no idea! I had not actually checked the system but instead relied on others! Always check the system yourself. I bang on about this a lot. Take a mono signal, does left sound like right? If not, why not? So apologies to the students for my lapse. I put it down to National rail travel and a lack of coffee!

Always check your system so you don’t end up red faced like me!

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