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feedback issues with vocal mics in loud gigs
Old 21st January 2013
  #1
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
feedback issues with vocal mics in loud gigs

in live gigs, i want my vocal to go through some combination of echo, overdrive, compression, midrange-heavy EQ. in my experience this almost always leads to grotesque amounts of feedback.

but then i saw a really loud band who had a similar sound (and better budget), except without feedback.

coud a noise gate be the answer? if so, what's readily available and cheap? i don't need it to be mega hi-fi - just as long as you can still hear the words/tune.

[unlike other threads re: noise gates, i'm looking for a solution that doesn't involve post-production, or the in-house mixer being enthusiastic enough to ride the faders (they wouldn't bother).]


thanks
patrick
Old 21st January 2013
  #2
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Arichlsss's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
That's a loaded ?. So many elements at play . Overdrive and compression on LV .... The band may need to wear ears to,eliminate wedge feed back, ringing out your monitors properly would help and if the feedback is from the house then your SOL..... If the FoH guy won't ride your fader then who is adding all the stuff on your vocals? R u using a vocal stomp box?
Old 21st January 2013
  #3
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Arichlsss's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Sounds like you need a bull horn
Old 21st January 2013
  #4
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🎧 10 years
yeah a bunch of pedals/effects units including a tube pre-amp and an old tape echo machine. i'd be controlling them on stage, not the venue mixer.

i prob wouldn't be using overdrive very often but i've heard it done and i like it, i'm just wondering how the hell they do it.
Old 21st January 2013
  #5
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Arichlsss's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
I would give the FOH a parallel chain one dry and one with your sauce.
Old 21st January 2013
  #6
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jetboatguy's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
distortion on a mic feed always leads to feedback on a stage wedge.. period.

in-ears might be the best solution.

are you using a vocal mic plugged into stomp boxes.. this could cause other problems, mainly impedance and level matching problems.

Gating a vocal mic is tricky.. your likely to get into artifacts (chatter mis-trigger.. etc) and you would need to put the gate specifically in the signal chain before your delay/reverb effects.. if your hell bent on experimenting with noise gates, stomp box type gates are usually very limiting.. rack mount gates with a side chain filter is the pro way to go.

and to the previous comment.. if your feedback is being produced from FOH speakers.. a mega phone probably is a fail safer option.
Old 21st January 2013
  #7
Gear Nut
 
elharley's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Gating is not the solution. Proper gain structure is.
Where is the feedback from, FOH or monitors?
Are you riding the pedals-fx units or do you have a few specific settings?
Does the FOH-monitor engineer know what you are doing on stage and do you go through these things durring sound check, or are you just throwing and going expecting the engineer to sort it out?
Old 21st January 2013
  #8
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
thanks for all the help guys, much appreciated!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arichlsss ➑️
I would give the FOH a parallel chain one dry and one with your sauce.
hey that's a good idea. pardon my ignorance but how do you do that? A/B switch? i don't currently have any unit that has two outputs that could make that happen.

Quote:
are you using a vocal mic plugged into stomp boxes.. this could cause other problems, mainly impedance and level matching problems.
first i put the mic through a pre amp to get good level before going into a tape echo machine (and potentially to overdrive the pre amp), so the signal-noise ratio is good (if that's what you mean. although i haven't actually tried overdrive yet - i've had enough trouble just with reverbs/echos etc not to bother)

Quote:
Where is the feedback from, FOH or monitors?
Are you riding the pedals-fx units or do you have a few specific settings?
Does the FOH-monitor engineer know what you are doing on stage and do you go through these things durring sound check, or are you just throwing and going expecting the engineer to sort it out?
the feedback is from foldbacks. sometimes out front, but not often.
i just have a few specific settings - i don't change anything on the fly.
i always tell the engineers, but they can't control it - you ask for more, they turn it up, get feedback, then they say it can't be done.



basically, the problem is not getting much level from an effected vocal mic before it feeds back. the equipment/venue/mixer used have varied, but the result is always the same.

so is the best solution to give the machines to the engineer to do a send/return/whatever, in the process somehow sending a dry signal to the foldback, and an effected signal to the audience? or split signal into two as suggested by Arichlsss?
Old 21st January 2013
  #9
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Sounds like you definitely should get your effects inserted at the mixer so the aux send can be sent to your monitor unaffected.

Also use a graphic EQ on your monitor sends to control the feedback frequencies (as the previous guy said to "ring out the monitors").

Have you tried using a graphic EQ yet?
Old 21st January 2013
  #10
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Kaoz's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Yeah, you're definitely asking for trouble with that sort of setup.

What sort of mic are you using? A 57 may help a little bit.

I'm assuming that the effects are the sorts of things that you're needing to hear through foldback? If so, your best option is definitely IEMs. Giving the effects control to the sound guy probably won't help too much in that case.

If the sounds are something you don't need through foldback, then skip them entirely and just tell the FoH guy what sort of sound you want and see what he can do with whatever fx he has at hand. You could try sending a split signal I guess, but I tend to think this would make life difficult for you singing.

OR consider one of those dedicated vocal effects pedals. I've worked with a few of them, and they're generally easier to setup correctly than multiple pedals.
Old 22nd January 2013
  #11
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by patrickw ➑️
in live gigs, i want my vocal to go through some combination of echo, overdrive, compression, midrange-heavy EQ. in my experience this almost always leads to grotesque amounts of feedback.
All of these things are adding "gain" to your mic so you are simply turning up. It doesn't matter how you create gain (as in it's not gain structure but gain itself).

Once your mic hear the speaker at the same level as it hears the input to the mic (at any frequency) it begins to feed back. It's unlikely that a noise gate will help in your case.
Old 23rd January 2013
  #12
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Arichlsss's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Maybee your preamp has multiple outputs, if not there are som XLR splitter boxes out there with ground lifts that I've used in the past. What signal does your tape delay want to see? Is it a guitar pedal or studio piece
Old 24th January 2013
  #13
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 10 years

This is what you need!

Straight after the mic, before the preamp and everything. Use the clean line for monitors (maybe with a bit of the other stuff if you really need to hear the FX)

Also gives the FOH engineer two channels to work with.. Maybe getting a little clarity trough your FX soup is just what is needed sometimes.
Old 26th January 2013
  #14
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
^ that thing in the above picture, now that's what i call an economical solution. so simple. genius. (i think in-ear monitors down at the local bar will look a tad stadium rock)

thanks for your help dudes!
Old 27th January 2013
  #15
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Also cheap - mic technique. ensure that the microphone isn't in front of the FOH speakers, and that it is off axis from the foldback monitors. Not sure of the type of music, but don't cup the ball of the mic.

In some cases, a different mic may offer more gain before feedback, such as an Audix OM7 vs. a SM58. But used properly, a SM58 should work fine if it's pointed in the right direction.
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