FOH Updates

Tuesday, January 12, 2010
posted by Dave
Sunday - 6:50am

Shortly before Christmas, the latest software for the Venue arrived. I want to take a minute to talk about some new features along with some other tweaks we’ve made to make our FOH workflow easier.

New Console Functions

First up are a couple new functions we’ve programmed into the console using events:

- Backup Mic Repatch
By pressing the “F4″ key located on the right side of the console’s main unit, you can activate an event that will re-patch the auditorium’s backup mic to the worship leader’s channel. This way, should you need the backup mic for the worship leader, you can press one button and have his/her mic show up on the exact same channel you’re already working with.

It’s important to note that when you fire the event, you are actually recalling a snapshot. By recalling that snapshot, you will change where you are in the order of your snapshots so make sure you have the right snapshot selected for your next cue before you recall it. Pressing “Next” may recall ALL SILENT if you’re not careful. If you want to return to the worship leader’s original mic, you have to manually re-patch it.

- Talkback Mutes the Band
If you look under “Events” on the Options page, you will see a new event “Talkback Mutes Band VCA”. By activating this event (click the green dot so that it is highlighted), you have a quick way to mute the band VCA. This way you can silence the band to talk to the worship leader or allow a producer to communicate with the worship leader. The Talkback button is a momentary button so it won’t latch. If you need to latch it, double-tap the talkback button. If you do use this event, we recommend that you disable it before the start of the service to prevent accidentally bumping the Talkback button.

Software Updates

The new software for the Venue adds a couple of great features for us:

- Snapshot the System Tempo
If you right-click on a snapshot’s name on the Snapshots page, you can “Show Tempo”. Clicking the metronome to highlight it for each snapshot will enable you to snapshot the system’s tempo. Clicking the lock icon in the Echofarm plugin will then force it to use the system tempo for its reference. The nice thing about this is now you can snapshot your tempos but also tap a new tempo in the middle of a song without having to mess around in the plugin.

- VCA/Group Spill
This is my favorite feature. By double-tapping the select button for a Group or VCA, you can “spill” the contents of that group or VCA to the left of the master section. For example, double-tapping the Kit VCA will bring all the Kit VCA members right to the center of the desk you can make your adjustments.

One thing I have started doing with this is using one of the VCA’s to create a virtual bank of channels. You might see a VCA on the console called Vitals performing this function. I assign any “vital” channels I need to this VCA. These are channels that might normally be on different banks that I’ll use during a transition. For example, I will typically assign Andy, keys, the worship leader, and title package to my Vitals VCA. This way I can get quick access to everything I need to grab during the transition from worship to the message.

There are some other new features as well such as the ability to copy plugin settings. To find out more, please visit Digidesign’s website. If you have any questions or would like a demonstration of the new features, please ask myself or Luke.

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