DiGiCo Audio Consoles Power ‘Meet You There’ Tour, Helsingborg City Theater, Odessa Christian Faith Center

DiGiCo audio consoles have been busy in multiple settings including music, theater, and houses of worship:

Di5SOS Choose DiGiCo For Their “Meet You There” Tour 
Australian pop-punk band, 5 Seconds of Summer (5SOS) made their name as somewhat of a YouTube sensation, but rose to international stardom after touring with UK mega-boy band, One Direction, during their 2012 Take Me Home tour. 5SOS have since released three studio albums, headlining three world tours in the process. Their current “Meet You There” tour supports their 2017 hit record, Youngblood, and at stage left position, Pavan Grewall is working from his trusted DiGiCo SD10 console.

Grewall is adept at both FOH and monitor roles. He has flown faders at FOH for a number of well-known artists including Meghan Trainor, Nick Jonas, and Canadian singer-songwriter, Carly Rae Jepsen, with whom he spent five years touring the world.

His current role as monitor engineer with 5SOS is one he is enjoying: he has been working with both the band and the DiGiCo SD10, supplied by Adlib – Sound, Light & Visual Solutions, for 18 months. It is the overall functionality, ease of use, and sound quality of the console which has made it his go-to desk.

“I’m running an SD-Rack and a SD-MiNi-Rack to accommodate the additional inputs for this show,” he says. “And I really love the mic pres on the SD10: they’re so transparent, and that’s what I really enjoy – and actually, that’s what I need- for working monitors, because ultimately, I am trying to give the band the truth of it.”

And that means so coloration, unless they ask for it, he explains.

“The guys are very easy to work with, and know what they like to hear. Occasionally, the drummer might ask me to jazz up a mix, or something, which is cool, and very easy to do on the SD10 – but with this console, I ultimately get more of what is actually happening, as it delivers a very pure sound.”

Grewall uses Snapshots for everything within the show, which he says keeps the mixing process as simple as possible.

“I also have a Snapshot for anything that needs to be done every day,” he reveals. “For example, there is a portion in the set where Michael [Clifford, guitarist] and Callum [Hood, bassist] switch vocal mics, so that happens with my Snapshots. And I take timecode to trigger that. The internal FX within the console are also excellent – I use them on everything, along with a few Waves plugins, just as extra tools when I need them.”

The uber-successful 5SOS Meet You There tour ran from August to November last year, kicking off in Osaka, Japan, and finishing up in Madrid, 52 shows later, with Grewall’s SD10 not missing a single beat.

Helsingborg Boasts First DiGiCo SD5 Swedish Theater Installation
Helsingborg City Theater, in the south of Sweden, was originally constructed in 1921. It was demolished in 1976 and the current theatre was opened. It is one of the best-known city theatres in the country – notably, it was managed by Ingmar Bergman in the mid-1940s – and hosts both homegrown and touring theatre companies from across Europe. With a mixing system that was becoming outdated, the theatre decided to invest in a DiGiCo SD5, the first to be installed in a Swedish theatre, ensuring it would be at the cutting edge of mixing technology both now and into the foreseeable future.

Purchased through DiGiCo’s Swedish distributor Soundware, whose Magnus Wiborg worked with the theatre’s resident sound engineers, Åke Lindborg and Jonas Mattson to ensure the best solution was specified, and installed by Fremlab AB, the system comprises the SD5, which runs on an optical loop and has Waves integration, plus five SD-Racks.

“We gathered that the number of inputs, outputs and multi-band dynamics, together with the three screens, 36 faders and the ability to do virtual MADI soundchecks of shows, perfectly suited our needs,” says Åke. “It was also important to implement the Optocore loop between FOH and our other five SD-Rack locations.”

Two of the racks are located at stage left/right and feature tour grade connectors for onstage band/production set up, another is situated in the amplifier room, the fourth in the wireless system rack and the final one at the monitor position.

“A fiber loop was needed because of the amount of information the system needs to handle, as well as being a failsafe,” explains Fremlab’s Carl-Fredrik Malmgren. “We installed a full loop so that if there is a problem somewhere along it, the signal simply goes the other round and the show goes on. We used about 300m of fiber in all and the installation was completed without any issues.”

The theatre’s team has found that the SD5’s matrix and ability to programme multiple signal paths has made the system much more logical and easy to use, and that the vast number of MADI in/outs are also a big help.

“We have a basic setup for the system, but the amount of wireless equipment, the need for Racks, number of inputs and outputs and so on varies a lot,” says Åke.“We haven’t had a chance to welcome visiting engineers yet, but expect them to use the console under our guidance. We are very happy with the console, although we’re sure that there are many ways to improve the workflow on the desk. We’re still finding clever ways of doing thing and we find a smarter way every day!”

DiGiCo Technology Enhances Odessa Christian Faith Center’s New Sanctuary
The Odessa Christian Faith Center’s newly opened $20 million-plus facility in this well-known west-Texas city represents the church’s steady growth over the last 35 years. Its new 2,000-capacity sanctuary more than doubled the size of its previous 825-seat room, and the OCFC now also has a sound system to match its bigger space, centered on a new DiGiCo SD10 console at front of house backed by a pair of SD-Racks and connected to the DiGiCo 4REA4 processing and distribution engine.

The DiGiCo systems feed a new EAW discrete LCR sound system, which is in part why AV consulting firm Idibri specified the SD10 and its capacious channel count. “This combination of systems and platforms makes it a strong solution for Odessa Christian Faith Center’s new church building, to support Sunday worship and large presentations, while addressing budget and operational concerns,” explains Idibri Senior Consultant Ryan Knox.

The new SD10 console’s large channel capacity — up to 132 configurable channels, as well as up to 56 Aux/Group busses and a 24×24 Matrix — combined with the new 4REA4 platform fit the church’s needs, from front of house to the stage. And the new PA system’s LCR array setup is fully discrete, fed from the SD10’s LCR Master buss. “Along with the subs, this configuration for the sound system puts a lot of emphasis on individual busses to manage the signals,” says Knox. “The SD10 has the capacity and flexibility the church needs.”

Up on stage, the church’s gospel-praise band and large choir — each individual vocalist is separately mic’d, requiring as many as 30 channels — can demand as many as 65 channels for a normal Sunday service, and push that into the mid 90s or even low 100s for special events, all running at 96kHz. In any other situation, that would likely necessitate the use of a second console to handle monitoring.

Instead, the SD10 is paired with the new DiGiCo 4REA4 engine, which is used here to manage the large number of in-ear monitors being sent through the church’s Digital Audio Labs Livemix personal monitoring system, through the 4REA4’s Dante output card. “In this application, the 4REA4 is being used as a Dante bridge, between the console and the IEM system,” says Knox. “The 4REA4 also takes some of the load for a large monitoring requirement off of the FOH console.”

Designed to deliver the highest quality performance across multi-space venues and stages, DiGiCo’s new 4REA4 is an highly versatile processing and distribution engine. Paired with numerous DiGiCo connectivity options and powerful 4REA4 control software, the system provides routing, processing, and mix control that allows a performance area to easily expand across both temporary and fixed installations.

The church could not be more pleased with how the new systems are performing. “In this case, the 4REA4 eliminates the need for a second console, which saved us a considerable amount of money during a very expensive new capital project,” says Lowell Hohstadt, the church’s Music Minister and Fine Arts Ministry Director. The SD10 also supports the church’s all-volunteer technical staff, giving them a powerful digital console that’s user-friendly and highly flexible, able to easily be configured for the church’s various workflow needs.

But in particular for Hohstadt, a graduate of both the Juilliard School of Music (B.A. 1986) and Eastman School of Music (M.A. 1989), and who has composed over 400 works for worship and seasonal productions, sonic quality is paramount, and the SD10 provides that. “The package that Ryan and Idibri put together is fantastic, and it achieves everything we set out to do, as well as positions us for future planned expansions,” he says. “But I’m especially happy with the way the system sounds. It’s very musical. Combined with the exceptional support we’ve gotten from DiGiCo, I know it was the right way to go.”

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