> Live Sound, ever recorded it or mastered it?
Ivan Milenkovic
post Nov 30 2011, 10:16 PM
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I've recorded and mastered quite a few live shows, they were all done in amateurish ways, but I learned a lot from these experiences. It's great to have a dry stereo mix from a mixer, and audio from a cam. Here's a question then:

What do you think are pros/cons of a camera recording and what are those from a mixer?

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Saoirse O'Shea
post Dec 1 2011, 12:02 PM
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Not broadcast video but I've done both off line and real time mixing and mastering of live shows both for broadcast and for CDA etc. (At the moment we have a multipart job - part is to to master off line a Choral CD and the other part is to do a real time mix for a live broadcast of the same choral work.)

For realtime we take a feed off the house console to our own ADC and then into our daw etc. That way we aren't in the way of the house PA engineer and we can do what we want without affecting the FOH mix. We run sadie here so we can do realtime non-destructive editing as the feed is coming in. With stuff going to air direct we also have to run out through addiitional hardware so that we can put the feed on a delay and so be able to take out anyone swearing etc. We also keep the levels more conservative and the crest much higher for broadcast to help avoid hypercompression and cascading as the signal is often encodied to compressed digital prior to immediate broadcast to save bandwidth.

Taking a feed from the FoH console normally has an advantage that it should be high quality and you can decide on where you tap to take your submix. If we need more width then we usually talk to the FoH engineer about how s/he is going to mic i.e. with a Decca tree form etc or not, depending on the room. This usually more than helps improve audience/ambience sufficiently well so as to not require additional micing from some other source. We also usually tend to work on a 'set once and leave alone' approach to EQ etc., as most of our time on a realtime is taken up in editing. TBH in this scenario having to blend in an addiional and very different source would be a real pain - lots of different issues to think about ranging from tonality through to timing through to formats, connections etc. and much more to possibly go wrong.

Off line is considerably easier, particularly on your nerves, but with any live recording I find that at mastering I end up having to do a huge number of edits to remove unwanted ambient noise. We also have much more time to EQ and trim as necessary, so offline blending in a different source isn't an issue. Some of the off line stuff we (and others) do aren't a single take anyway but a blend of sessions recording at different times.

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