Mysore Dasara 2018 : From a System Engineer’s perspective.
October 18, 2018
Mysore Dasara 2018!
Mysore Dasara 2018 has come to an end and now I’m travelling back and have so much to say!
Firstly, I would like to Thank Srinivas and Sahana for having faith in me and trusting me with my abilities, to ask me to handle such a grand event not just as a System Engineer, but the entire Audio part of it from Mixing to Stage!
Secondly, a Big Big Thanks to Ajith, Akhil, Alex and Palini for being so amazing on stage, Ramesh for the beautiful lighting work and Chandru for the great LED wall work!
And how can I forget Johanson!Thank you so much for guiding me through everything.
Day 1 : Main PA Setup :
The event was scheduled to start on the 12th of October and go on till 17th of October for a total of 6 days with various Opening bands, college dances, Celebrity Dance Acts and the Headlining Act. We started with our setup 3 days prior.
I landed in Mysore on the morning of 9th October, to start with my work, as the system was also arriving at the venue by afternoon.
After re checking on the Venue dimensions provided to me I updated the actual dimensions as a few changes were made by the organisers .
The Main PA this time was the d&b V series 16 Tops and 12 B22 Subs.
Having Array Calc and R1 is the best part of using d&b’s as life becomes so much simpler with them.
Looking at the updated venue dimensions, there was a huge gap between the stage and the first row of audience so I decided on not having centre fills and rather using them in the array itself and cover my targeted audience area. Using Array Calc I plotted the entire venue and found the splay angles to be used. Then sent the Array Calc viewer file to the boys so they can look into their mobiles and rig up the system.
Array Calc viewer just makes life so simple on the go.
Next was to work on the Subs :
For everyone who has heard the B22 Subs they definitely know that these are beasts!
‘Subs in a Line’ was the configuration to go for with the number of subs we had, but I still wanted to try if I can cover the entire width of the venue with the cardioid setup and have a quiter stage.
A sweet compromise in this situation was to have the centre 4 stacks in a cardioid manner and then single subs at the edges, which I tried.
With this cardioid setup the stage was definitely quiter but only in the centre and still had a good amount of low end at both the edges, but due to the decreased length of the sub array the cancellations started a few feet away from the FOH at both sides, and I definitely didn’t want that to happen.
I decided on having low end on stage rather than compromising the experience for the audience, after all d&b thrives for “ Democracy for Listeners’ and also that is what my aim was!
Such compromises always reminds me of Bob McCarthy’s conversation on theTANSTAAFL phenomenon.
So, I went with the ‘Subs in a Line’ setup with electronic delay to cover the entire width.
And voila, the cancellation moved out of my zone of interest.
Thriving to make the entire venue sound as similar as possible was my goal and this setup got me the closest to it. So i was really satisfied with it.
The Mains and Subs were time aligned in Array Calc and as the rigged system and the Array calc rigging specs I used were same, the alignment was done within the software and all I had to do was load up R1 and done. Obviously I still verified the time alignment by running SMAART.
Now , we had a properly time aligned Mains and was time to call it a day.
DAY 2 : Delay & Relay stack setup :
From the input that I received and In my personal opinion, the major part of the crowd which enjoys the most is the one at the back and i wanted to give them an amazing experience and not feel left out.
The low truss height of the Main PA and with the limited number of boxes available for Main PA , I decided to use the 2nd delay tower as more of a Relay tower, in close connection with the LED wall to give them the best imaging possible.
All the delays were done till the evening and was time to make some noise .
As this was a Multi band scenario and because I didn’t want to use a different production desk (as i wanted to use the Venue S6L preamps) and also most importantly as I had the necessary gear, i did all the Delay processing on the Lake LM 44 processor.
Not that i had used it before, but some early morning time with it got me sorted to use it for my purpose.
We powered up the entire system and it was phenomenal :
1)Got amazingly even coverage with the d&b V’s starting from the first row.
2)The B22 evenly covered the entire width and travelled the distance. I was myself amazed by the thump I could feel till the very end.
3)RCF HDL 20’s as 1st delay stack and 2nd relay stack sounded phenomenal and also maintained the imaging as much as possible for the spectators, by working in close association with the LED guys.
This is all about the System Engineering part of my work at Mysore Dasara, however there’s a lot more I want to share about my experience there which I’ll write about in my next post.
To read more about my experience of the entire event, stay tuned.