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hey, I don't disagree entirely, I definitely know about doing things "just because you can". It's that attitude that attracts me to experimental physics, however....

it's one thing learning to play an electric guitar with your teeth as a crowd pleasing tour de force, it's quite another to give jimi hendrix a fender dreadnought acoustic and expect him to be able to get his sound. Maybe go for 40 or 50 submasters, raher than 120 individual channels??


Thanks Jimi for your vote of confidence! Weatherhead, I fully see where you are coming from and through practice and trial and error it might end up up that we do have to reduce the amount to submasters, then again it might not. I will find out when I can give it a go.


Thanks for all your comments

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My two cents would be dual ETC Express 48/96 running in single scene mode (192 individual faders).


Maybe I didn't read the previous pages closely enough, but has anyone made the assumption that, from an audience perspective, no matter how much you tell them it's live, it will just look programmed (unless it's really, obviously, intentionally sloppy)?


And if I'm being honest, this seems masturbatory. Not so much a show for an audience as it is a chance for op's to show off.


But I guess that can be said for a lot of art.


One man's opinion,


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No time to catch up on the last page at the moment, I'm afraid, so apologies if this has already been covered...


Do you want the ops to be a main focus (not necessarily all the time) or part of the orchestra, sort of thing?

I think that for the ops to be visually interesting you would have to think of them (and have them "choreographed") as either dancers or conductors. As instrumentalists, we don't do anything much more visually interesting than the third clarinet player, though you might put them next to the percussion section...


As for the desk, I would go for submasters rather than channels, though that does not necessarily mean fewer of them, just that they should be submasters when possible - to give the ops the possibility of changing to blue without having to use their toes and teeth to move all the channel faders.


You should also be aware that the colours on a monitor won't be the ones the audience sees...

On some shows, apparently, one op handles the conventional lights and another handles the movers.

You could have the ops on stage handling gobos, positions, shapes etc. (if you have movers, chases if you don't) and an op in FOH handling colours, perhaps... It should mean that the FOH op is in effect in charge of the overall look, and can use an intercom to tell the onstage ops what to do when necessary while they don't need to talk as much on stage, while the onstage ops can push palette buttons and fx subs and play the bump keys, making them visually more like pianists.


You mentioned changing colours with the intensity of the orchestra etc. earlier... Personally, that makes me think "disco lighting in 1982", but maybe you're visualizing something different than I am. :** laughs out loud **: If you still want to try that (I'd try it out in a smaller setting first to see if it works), I would go for sticking to your chosen colours as you normally would, but perhaps varying the saturation by washing out heavy colours with open whites, or something like that.

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I'm sure people like Jimi Hendrix and Jerry Lee Lewis, would have had a far eaiser time of it if they'd stuck to playing their instruments with their hands, rather than using their teeth or feet. I'm sure also that many bands would sound technically better if everything was just mixed down before the gig and they just mimed along ... wouldn't that give you a cleaner and more consistent show night on night?


Don't know about JLL but Jimi didn't actually play with his teeth, just used tapping / pulloffs etc. And I've worked with many artists that have mimed shows. :** laughs out loud **: anyway, I think conceptually it's a good idea bit in reality... having busked many many club nights and had people impressed with the lighting I realise that that most effective things are usually the simplest - Blackout, Crowd blind, strobe building in intensity... tilt saw, pan saw, 2 offset colours, simple chase etc. They aren't the most fun things to do visually on a standard desk, but some of them would be a bar steward to do on a channel mixing desk - eg from blackout to all lamps on etc. One extreme to the other...


I can't say whether it would work or not it's your call, no one can say it's a bad idea really, and secretly all board ops want to have their 15mins of fame and recognition :** laughs out loud **:



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A thought which I haven't seen mentioned else where (though I confess I skimmed a couple of posts): why not use the big manual desk you're sourcing as submasters for something modern and out of sight. Plenty of desks will take a DMX in and map it to submasters. Thus you can have the desired performing opps and decent lighting at the same time. Effectively the only difference between "normal" desks and this will be that they're not spread across pages rather all available at the same time. No reason why that shouldn't work.
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Live mixing is very much alive! I did a show only a week ago where I had no time to plot anything complex in so I busked the lot. (4 Colour Wash front and back to stage, 8 Vari-Lite 2500's, 12 Pixelline 1044's and 16 Par's doing colours onto a dancefloor). The overall result was probably a little erratic at times, but I think it looked ok overall. What I wouldn't contemplate however is trying to run 120 channels on manaul - not in this day and age anyway!


If you really want the lx operators to be changing things on the fly based on the music, then just go for a desk with plenty of submasters - plot a load of colour washes and groups of different lanterns together and then just push a few of these up each time to create different effects, then keep your flashing stuff and open whites onto the channel faders so they can be bumped. Something like an Avolites Diamond Vision or an ETC Insight 3, or Express 72/144 would probably be just the ticket.

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Surely a stencil is a low tech submaster so why not use the microprocessor version?......Dave


Exactly. 90% of my shows are busked. If I want red pars to the front rear and sides, what is the point of trying to manually push up 16 faders at the same time? I want the "luxury" of a sub. If I just want side red, then, yes I can manually push up 4 faders.


Ruling out submasters on principle seems unnecessary and pointless to me.

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Hi guys,


I have taken on board your comments and I can see where you are coming from with regards to submasters, I might give that a go, and see if it still gives the 'busy' look on stage, I really do not want to do any for of miming in it, so if they are running about up and down the desk it will be because they have to! Thanks for all your comments though, much appreciated.



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