Solotech of Montréal, Québec—a company that provides maintenance and repair, manufacturing, installation, and engineering and design services—deployed a Midas XL8 digital console for the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards held on November 4 in Ottawa, Ontario. Solotech’s VP of International Development, Richard Lachance (pictured at left), and Special Projects Director Mario St.-Onge (pictured at right) operated the XL8 for the show, which also marked the XL8’s debut in a live broadcast application.
“The XL8 performed extremely well as an audio mixing board,” says Lachance. “The word that springs to mind when I think of the XL8 is ‘fresh’—it brings a new level of responsiveness and sound quality to the digital realm. Another characteristic that sets it apart from the other digital consoles we use, all of which are great boards in their own right, is that it doesn’t feel like a digital desk; the layout is appealing before you even consider the audio performance. It has that very familiar Midas feel—it’s very easy to slip into the XL8.”
“The XL8’s capacity for dual operation is another great advantage,” added St-Onge. “The XL8 is big enough to comfortably accommodate two engineers, adding another dimension to its already impressive ergonomic layout. The systems engineer can use the right-hand side of the board for traffic cues, outputs and track details, while the FOH engineer can mix the audio inputs on the left side. In being big enough for two, the XL8 actually saves space, as normally, when running 100-plus inputs, you’d have one board dedicated for mixing and one for traffic. Plus, when two operators are clustered on the board, you can use one of the five screens for SIM or prompting. We can put the director’s prompter up there, so we know all our cues in advance.
“We really enjoyed using the POP groups, which allowed us to manage the show without snapshots,” St-Onge continues. “The operator can immediately recall whatever page is needed at the touch of a button, rather than scrolling through the whole show. There were various presenters and special guests scheduled to appear on stage, and being able to switch between the various mics and mix settings in a split second was great.”