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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
We're a garage band looking to become weekend warriors. So far, we don't play anything huge. Our big shows are opening for bands like Periphery, Texas in July and other metalcore stuff (200-400 attendance). We would love to go wireless but can't each afford Sennheisers (and a G90 for that matter), or justify them now - too much other sh#t to get the whole brand rolling.

We're getting the Behringer X32 rack in the next month. I know, I know, I said the B-word. This thing is supposed to be good since they bought up Midas, though. Basically, splitter snake into it so we have complete control of individual monitor mixes. You can check it here: Behringer: DIGITAL RACK MIXER X32 RACK

I see two options, a) something like a Shure Americas | P4HW Wired Bodypack Personal Monitor, or b) individual head phone amps. If we went with the body pack, we could make patch bays in our racks and plug the body pack XLRs into the front of the rack to keep the cable runs clean. If we went head phone amp, I'd want it rack mounted as well. Found this one, but was hoping for something cheaper: Sonifex RB-HD1 Stereo Headphone Amplifier Especially considering you see cheap name brands with 4 channels for around $150.

Any other ideas? Do you know of a single channel, stereo, head phone amp that's rack mount other than this one?
 

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Grumpy Old Fart
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I would NEVER recommend IEM's for guys just starting out unless they've got someone who really, really knows their shit running sound for them. IEM's need a lot of skill to sound right and not leave the user feeling isolated and hating life.

In order to have a successful IEM rig you need put a mic on EVERYTHING on stage and ideally have a few ambient mics scattered around. You also never want to go budget on something that sits inside your ears. There is a huge potential for serious damage to your hearing if you don't know what you're doing.

I have older Shure PSM 200 series packs that can go wired or wireless. Wired is fine if you're a drummer or keyboard player but they suck HARD if you are moving around even a little. It's one more thing to go wrong in the middle of a gig.

If you are going to go wired at least go with the 200's so that you only need to purchase the transmitters later.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I would NEVER recommend IEM's for guys just starting out unless they've got someone who really, really knows their shit running sound for them. IEM's need a lot of skill to sound right and not leave the user feeling isolated and hating life.

In order to have a successful IEM rig you need put a mic on EVERYTHING on stage and ideally have a few ambient mics scattered around. You also never want to go budget on something that sits inside your ears. There is a huge potential for serious damage to your hearing if you don't know what you're doing.

I have older Shure PSM 200 series packs that can go wired or wireless. Wired is fine if you're a drummer or keyboard player but they suck HARD if you are moving around even a little. It's one more thing to go wrong in the middle of a gig.

If you are going to go wired at least go with the 200's so that you only need to purchase the transmitters later.
We are going to be running the IEM mix, and yes, we definitely know our way around sound. The point is to NOT have the house FOH guy run our monitor mix any longer - have run into way more problems than if we had control ourselves. We have spent the past year learning how to self-produce, I run live sound at a venue in town, and two of the other guys have as well. Just because the band is now "emerging," doesn't mean that we're green to any of these aspects. Also, every component of our live setup will be sent to a splitter snake. We're mostly digital, so we don't mic anything other than the drums (which we will also have a fan out for). Also, we have plenty of extra mics for ambient/room treatment. If you checked out the X32 rack, you'll notice that it has the ability to limit ANY signal, including the busses which we assign to each individual's monitor mix. We're very cautious of that as well.

The problem with the PSM 200 is that they sum to mono. We need a stereo mix. Pretty sure we've found a solution though. Using a 6 channel head phone amp and sending those individual mixes to something like a passive, inline volume pot so each guy has control in their rack: ART HeadTap Headphone Tap | Musician's Friend The fact of being wired is going to suck, for sure. This is temporary until we can either afford to go all wireless, or have the need to go all wireless.
 

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Grumpy Old Fart
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Didn't mean to imply that you guys didn't know what you were doing. Usually need to go budget means newbie to me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Totally know what you mean, all good. In this instance, we are needing to budget a start-up light show, a trailer and a wired IEM system. Just went through with getting a bunch of artwork, mastering and merch printed. I can't justify going wireless yet since it's a commodity type of item ($1.6k w/o custom molded IEMs). Getting our mugs on a stage as much as possible, outside of our city, is first. Ha.
 

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Wirelessly posted :)sponge:)

Wired in-ears will ruin your ability to put on a show. You will be stuck standing in place. Don't believe me? Put in some earbuds and have a buddy yank on the cable real quick.

Also, bringing your own light show is unnecessary and a huge hassle if you're not headlining. Take that money and use it for in-ears that are wireless, if you absolutely have to run your own in-ear monitors. The easiest way to impress as an opening act is to have an extremely short set up and tear down time, and to put on an impressive performance in both music and stage presence. Lighting is an easy way to look impressive when you have nothing of substance to back it up, and the people who count know that. If you have the performance to back it up, you won't want to hide it with lighting tricks.
 

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The problem with the PSM 200 is that they sum to mono. We need a stereo mix. Pretty sure we've found a solution though. Using a 6 channel head phone amp and sending those individual mixes to something like a passive, inline volume pot so each guy has control in their rack: ART HeadTap Headphone Tap | Musician's Friend The fact of being wired is going to suck, for sure. This is temporary until we can either afford to go all wireless, or have the need to go all wireless.
Trust me you dont NEED stereo. I have that same headphone amp and it works great but the sends from the board need to be stereo also. A quick glance at the manual for that mixer indicates that the mixes on the busses are mono anyways so your point is moot.

IEM's are awesome. Just remember to practice setup and tear down so you dont miss steps and spent time trying to trouble shoot at the show.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Wirelessly posted :)sponge:)
Lighting is an easy way to look impressive when you have nothing of substance to back it up, and the people who count know that. If you have the performance to back it up, you won't want to hide it with lighting tricks.
I really like this analogy.

A quick glance at the manual for that mixer indicates that the mixes on the busses are mono anyways so your point is moot.

IEM's are awesome. Just remember to practice setup and tear down so you dont miss steps and spent time trying to trouble shoot at the show.
I just mentioned this to the guy that's been spec'ing a lot of the monitoring rig and he had said you can either sum them or run stereo. I'll definitely double check this, though. Hopefully that's not something that we've missed. Thanks for looking at it. Also, we've been keeping setup/tear down to 15 minutes or less. That's always been a concern since having a few hiccups on our first two, small, local shows because of not being fully prepared!
 
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