FOH Engineer Jon Lemon Uses DiGiCo SD10 Console with The Fray

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This summer, front-of-house engineer Jon Lemon (pictured) used a DiGiCo SD10 console on a brief tour with The Fray, who opened for U2 on a handful of make-up dates from last year’s cancelled tour. Lemon assembled a small touring package using the compact SD10 in tandem with an SD 192kHz DiGiRack and the Waves/DiGiCo Sound Bundle.

Lemon describes how the Waves bundle helped him handle a particular situation that presented itself on the tour. “On the U2 shows, the main end of the P.A. had two lefts and two rights, flown side by side, so one system was doing all the vocals and all the guitars, and the outside system was doing all the drums, bass, keyboards, etc. Normally, on my left and right I would have a Waves hardware piece, the BCL—the one with the Renaissance Compressor, a Maxx Bass and an L2 Ultramaximizer. I added another stereo bus for all of the shows we were doing with them and then it was really easy. I was able to drag up another rack and then copied and pasted my original three plug-ins—the Renaissance Compressor, Maxx Bass and L2 Ultramaximizer—into another rack, and then instantly I had my settings available on two masters. That was a very easy way to handle having another output in a complicated system.

“I also found that, where I would normally run parallel drum compression live and have to use an outboard compressor such as a Smart C2 Compressor or an SSL Bus Compressor, I was able to do it internally on the console using the SSL Bus Compressor. Normally, when you do it with analog outboard, you’ve got to loop in and out of a straight drum bus to make up the latency of the compressor to stop it [from] phasing. All that’s calculated and compensated for you within the Waves/DiGiCo package now, so stuff like that is useful and quick. You can build up your own presets like you can do with the regular channel EQ, dynamics, etc.”

Lemon adds that the Waves SoundGrid also came in handy after the tour, when he was asked to mix three songs from a live recording done at one of The Fray’s sideshows at the Fillmore Auditorium in San Francisco. “The recording was done in Pro Tools by the venue, as it was a fly date, and one of the only shows I did not record myself," he says. "I was able to take many of the presets from the live console’s Waves plug-ins and import them into my Pro Tools session, as I’d stored the files for the presets for each individual plug-in off the SD10. I found that intriguing, that I could get my drum and vocal reverbs and de-esser exactly where I’d honed it in live. It made the mixes I had to do for the band extremely quick and easy because I was able to access all my presets from the live show. And of course that will work the other way around as well, as you can hone reverbs and the like at home and import them into your DiGiCo/Waves session.”

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