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Martina McBride’s Front-of-House Engineer

Martina McBride's front-of-house engineer, John McBride talks to Mix about the the consoles, mic pres and other equipment used on tour.

“I love the Paragon console I’m using. It’s analog, which still far outperforms any digitial console I have heard at this point. I am a fan of the DiGiCo D5, but I still plan on using analog desks until the quality difference is less than it is now, Half the engineers in this business don’t even realize how good analog gear sounds, so they do not aspire to reach those heights.”

“I enjoy the fact that each channel offers an analog comp and gate, which sound good in general. The ATI mic pre’s are solid, although I do
carry a lot of outboard mic pre’s. The board sums nicely to the stereo bus, and I like the EQ on the channels.”.

“I use 24 API mic pre’s, 16 EMI mic pre’s and four Telefunken V72 mic pre’s. We have a pair of EMI mastering EQs on the left/right, one 1176, one
Fatso, one SPL Transient Designer and one Neve 33609, a stereo comp that is inthe rack in case I want to compress the left/right. We use Lake
controllers for most of the EQ on the system, but the EMI adds the magic. I also use a Lexicon 200 and a 480 for ‘verb, and one PCM42 for delay.”

“The Lake Controllers are one of the finest digital pieces of equipment that I have heard; I guess there is hope for the future of digital electronics. I really enjoy the Mesa filters, and the flexibility that the controllers give you over different zones in the P.A. Having a great tech helps : Arpad Sayko makes my life much easier. Robert Bull in monitor world is world-class, as are the rest of the guys on Martina’s tour. When you hit a certain successful point, you can afford to hire the best who in turn make a positive impression all the way around.”