Singer/songwriter Liz Phair (pictured with tour engineer) is the headliner on the current leg of the Maybelline New York Presents Chicks With Attitude tour, and her onstage monitoring has been taken care of by dbx Professional Products technologies. Monitor mixer Kevin Glendinning uses the dbx IEM In-Ear-Monitor Processor as the main processing system for Phair’s in-ear mix monitoring. In addition, the flexibility of the IEM system allows Glendinning to utilize the dbx DriveRack® 480 Complete Equalization & Loudspeaker Management System for very specific applications, creating a combined all-dbx system. Components of the tour’s sound system were provided by dB Sound.
Glendinning has set one of the DriveRack 480 systems into the monitor mixer through an insert point. The dbx IEM system is set up in-line from the mixer to the wireless transmitter driving Phair’s in-ear monitor. While the DriveRack 480 has a wide range of processing capabilities, including pre-crossover EQ, notch filters, speaker delay, multiple crossovers, speaker-compensation equalizer and driver-alignment delay, Glendinning specifically chooses its onboard 9-band parametric equalizer. “That way, I can have the EQ graphic visible on a 480R remote, which is a very easy-to-read display,” he explains. “Then I use the rest of the processing on the IEM to fine-tune Liz’s monitor sound.” This includes the dbx PeakStop™ limiting capability, as well as custom reverb algorithms using Lexicon technology. “It’s really a great way to do monitoring,” says Glendinning. “It’s very compact yet very powerful. Liz and I will sit and tweak the system for all sorts of different venue environments and then we can store and recall the settings. When we get to new venues with similar acoustical characteristics, we can use those presets as a starting point to tailor the sound perfectly to each hall or theater, indoor or outdoor. The IEM has totally eliminated sidefills and wedges in the monitoring system, and Liz loves the way it sounds.”
Glendinning is also using eight of the 16 channels of DriveRack he has out on the tour as inserts processing Phair’s acoustic instruments and keyboard rig. “The DriveRack is simply an amazing tool for so many applications,” he adds, “and I’ve been using the IEM from the moment it came out. It’s the in-ear solution I always reach for first. It’s great that I can have so much processing power so compatibly from one company.”