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So I'm falling into the responsibility of consulting on lighting/sound for a new theater being started here in fort wayne .The budgets are non-trivial, so there's a chance to relaly put together a solid system. For now, here's a message I sent to the guy in charge.
update - 11/14
So I'm thinking about Tascam's digital board offerings, like this, and thinking that it might be worth pushing for a little more money in the budget for.
It's got enough channels to be useful, and isn't priced unreasonably high. I'm gonna hit up sweetwater this week and see what they've got to say about it (probably 'it's great!' because they'll want the sale, but we'll see.)
Hopefully that would let us go digital without breaking the bank.
So i've started tackling this from a few different angles. When we consider a system in which a large number of performers (12 or more) are being mic'd, then the setup changes considerably.
We switch to an analog board, for maximum channels vs dollars, and then spend ten thousand dollars on the wireless mics, leaving us not a lot of money for other things.
It's an interesting issue.
So I've been doing some more research, and the more I look at it, the more excited I get about the possibilities that come forward when you build a sound system with modern equipment.
That's the sound board I'm thinking we'd want to get. It's fairly small, physically, but it's got a wide variety of input/output options (as well as a digital interface which would let us connect it to the computer with just one cable, and get eight channels both ways, very exciting.) The faders are motorized, so you can program scenes with levels pre-set, for microphones or whatever else. It's got built-in effects, so we wouldn't need another rack unit for that.
We would install that card in the computer we built to let us use the SFX software I mentioned to play back sound effects and things like that. It would also let us record performances or create our own sound effects/cues.
Another exciting feature of the software is that we would be able to use MIDI to control the sound board, as well as whatever light board we ended up purchasing(and also the other way, I would think), which means we might be able to get by with just one operator if it was necesarry, pressing go on either the light board or sound board and having everything happen on its own.
These are the speakers I'm looking at. They're powered, which means we would want to get some clean AC circuits distributed throughout the grid, but they're really compact, which means they wouldn't be too obtrusive hanging from the grid. They've got a fairly wide dispersion too, so even if we had to put them close to the audience, they'd work well. Plus they're cabaple of a fair amount of volume. I'm thinking six or eight of these, so we can have two for our 'mains' at any given time, and then a good number of environmental speakers.
One of these is also a good idea, we could stick it in a corner and have some real low-end rumble.
The intial quote we put together came out to $15k, before tax, it included four wireless receivers (three body packs with countryman mics and one handheld transmitter), and $1000 earmarked for cable and installation, as well as 8 of those QSC speakers. The SFX software is $400 (website http://www.stageresearch.com/products/
SFX6/SFX6.aspx), and I could build a very solid computer for around $1000, so I think at that budget the whole project is -very- doable with some trimming.
As far as lighting I've done a little bit of looking around, and as far as a 'real' physical console goes, I think we would be well served by an ETC Ion, http://www.etcconnect.com/product.over view.aspx?ID=20351, once again it's a small form factor so we can stick it wherever we need to, but it's got the same software as their flagship board. It comes with 1024 channels of output in its base model, which is a whole shitload. We'd be using less than a hundred for our dimmers, and moving lights take anywhere from 18-30, so even the minimum wouldn't hamper us.
Plus, if this link (http://www.stagelightingstore.com/s.n l/it.A/id.14574/.f) is to be believed, it's also relatively affordable in the world of control consoles.
The Jands (http://www.jandsvista.com/) option is there as well, they manufacture a wide variety of control surfaces, from fairly minimal up to big giant boards that have the computer hardware built in. This route would mean we'd need to build another PC to run the software, but it's an option. I can't find any pricing information on these off hand.
So I started a thread in the Audio Forum, to collect sound effects packs created by Newgrounds users. The goal being to collect a large volume of high-quality, original SFX available to flash authors, musicians, voice actors and anyone else who might be submitting content to Newgrounds.
The idea is for users to upload packs of SFX that they personally have created, so that we can build a large library of effects that no one has heard before.
I'll use this newspost to gather up the packs so we can keep it as an easy reference. So, here we go.
First, we've got my first pack. Link here!
This is a pack of mp3s totaling 1.12 megabytes in size.
Contained in this pack are the following sounds:
Coin Drop: The sound of a single coin hitting a hard surface and rattling a little. 0:01
Coughing: A short male cough. 0:02
Crumbling Paper: Several sheets of paper being crumpled together. 0:07
Dialing a cell phone: Seven digits dialed and two American ringbacks, followed by a hangup beep. 0:17
Fizzy Soda: Soda fizzing inside the can. 0:04
Keyboard typing: Several bursts of rapid typing, with some desk boominess. 0:26
Match: Two unsuccessful match strikes, and a then one resulting in the match lighting. 0:04
Nikon: The sounds of my nikon camera powering up, zooming, autofocusing, and powering down. Some odd lens grinding I should be worried about. 0:16
Opening a can of soda: A little bit of room reverb. 0:01
Paper tear: Several tearing noises and some various paper handling noise. 0:09
Pretzel: One loud crunch followed by several chewing noises 0:05
Several Coins: Dropping several coins. Some distant sounds of bouncing. 0:01
Small crowd applause: An experiment in creating applause. Sounds a bit like a small crowd in a conference room. 0:06
Burp: A two-toned burp without much support. 0:01
Next, we've got SineRider's first pack.
47mb of various sounds, noises, and instruments for you to use any way you like. Here is the list of files in this pack:
Lo-fi Guitar Jam
Lo-fi Magic Wand Toy
Lo-fi Toy Melody
Shortwave Radio Excerpt
All sounds recorded with Zoom H2
All Lo-fi samples recorded with Panasonic RQ-L319
That's all for now, but I'll try to keep this page updated.