Live Rig - Wiring help!! Stage box, snake or patch panel?

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Live Rig - Wiring help!! Stage box, snake or patch panel?

Post by Guido3 »

I just about to start wiring up my live keyboard rig and I am unsure what the best way forward is. I'm trying to make my system as slick/ as possible.

My rack currently contains a Powerconditioner, UAD Apollo rack, Alesis AI3. I run MainStage/Logic on my MBP and feed it into the Apollo using TB3. The AI3 is connected to the Apollo via ADAT to give me 8 extra INs (which I don't need) and 8 extra OUTs (16 analogue in total which I may need). I use Yamaha CP88 and Yamaha Montage as my main boards.

I want lots of flexibility (for other projects) so I'm not sure whether to get a snake to run all my INS/OUTS to a stage box or wire them to a patchbay on the rear of the case so I can easily plug into which ever IN/OUT I need for a particular gig.

I'm also unsure whether to wire my keys through the Apollo so I can mix everything in the box using UAD Console for my monitoring. I can then send multiple outs to FOH from the Apollo/AI3 (4 channels of keys (Montage/CP88 + multiple channels of MainStage). In the past I have simply sent stereo keys x2 and stereo out my sound card.

As you can tell, I'm in a bit of a quandary and I might be overthinking it so would welcome come help/advice.

Thanks in advance.
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Re: Live Rig - Wiring help!! Stage box, snake or patch panel?

Post by Sam Spoons »

If you don't have a regular sound guy I'd probably stick with the stereo feed to FOH, preferably with a mono sum option. I can't remember a gig where we were given multiple channels of keys and we rarely, if ever, ran the PA in stereo anyway so if there are limited inputs a mono feed that is in your control (i.e. not just the L or R) is probably a good thing.
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Re: Live Rig - Wiring help!! Stage box, snake or patch panel?

Post by Guido3 »

Thanks Sam.

To keep things neat, would you run the outputs from the Apollo into a patch bay on the rear of the rack or take the outs to a stage box?
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Re: Live Rig - Wiring help!! Stage box, snake or patch panel?

Post by Sam Spoons »

I'm not a keyboard player and I'm looking at it from the sound guy's PoV. I'd prefer an option for a stereo/mono line level(ish) output on jacks but would be happy with mic level from your DI box(s) on XLR. These could be break out cables or sockets on the back of the rack. The simplest way would be a couple of TS cables to go into my DI boxe(s) but it's probably worth having a line isolator box of some kind to protect your rig from unexpected spook power, and if it has a mono sum function all the better.

Bigger events than I usually did (tens or hundreds in the audience rather than thousands most of the time) could probably accommodate multiple feeds from the keys but if the engineer doesn't know your songs then he's unlikely to do much beyond the odd volume boost if your solo's are a bit quiet so you're probably still better off balancing your rig yourself.
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Re: Live Rig - Wiring help!! Stage box, snake or patch panel?

Post by Guido3 »

Thanks. Can you recommend any rack mountable line isolators? When I do a quick search most searches come up with DI boxes which I don’t need due to my balanced line signals.
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Re: Live Rig - Wiring help!! Stage box, snake or patch panel?

Post by Hugh Robjohns »

ART does an 8-channel rack mount version of the DTI box, called the T8. I use one with my keyboards.

https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/art-t8
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Re: Live Rig - Wiring help!! Stage box, snake or patch panel?

Post by Guido3 »

Thank Hugh. Looks like a useful bit of kit. Gets my I/O in an accessible position in the rack and adds an extra line of protection between my rig and FOH.
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Re: Live Rig - Wiring help!! Stage box, snake or patch panel?

Post by Sam Spoons »

The only thing it lacks is a simple means of summing the inputs to stereo/mono. But I guess that could be done in software?
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