Gates on vocal channels

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This topic contains 7 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of BobWitte BobWitte 7 years, 7 months ago.

Viewing 8 posts - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)
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  • #24025
    Profile photo of Joe Hinkens
    Joe Hinkens
    Participant

    I’m looking for some general advice on noise gates on vocal channels. I haven’t had much need for them in our band since all the instruments run direct, including drums (mesh heads & triggers), we’re all on in-ears, no wedges, so there’s very little stage volume.

    Sunday I’ll be mixing for a more conventional setup with guitar amps, acoustic drums, etc, so I’m looking for some general do’s and don’ts for gates.

    Also, I’m curious about how the side-chain filter works in relation to the gate.

    Thanks,
    Joe

    GLD-80 w/M-DANTE, GLD-AR2412, MacBook Pro, Studio One 2

    #35003
    Profile photo of jcarter
    jcarter
    Participant

    Side-chain filter can be nice if either your source (or the crosstalk you’re trying to exclude) are in a relatively narrow frequency band. For example, on a rack tom you might set the filters to only allow the fundamental frequency of the tom into the sidechain, so that the gate won’t open up if the neighbouring rack tom, or a nearby cymbal gets hit.

    With regard to gates on vocals… I haven’t found them to be all that useful on vocals to be honest. If I’m getting enough bleed into a mic that I’m tempted to use a gate, it’s usually because I’m trying to put a lot of gain on a vocalist with a weak voice or poor mic technique, and it’s almost impossible to set the threshold to reliably get the vocal without the gate also opening up all the time due to stage volume.

    #35008
    Profile photo of eotsskleet
    eotsskleet
    Participant

    I totally agree with jcarter! I only use Gates on vocals if too much noise from stage does take influence to my mix and if the singer is good enough to sing direct into the microphone so the Gate only opens when it’s needed! If the difference between stagesound and his voice is too small… then better disable the Gate! Otherwise you get pump-noise all the time!

    Sidechain Filters can be worth if you know how to use it! Not only set the Filterrange to what the instruments-frequences are! Remember the Sidechain Filter is no EQ and doesn’t cut your Frequencies! The sidechainfilter just tells the Gate when to open and when to Close!

    For example for the Basedrum… if you would set the sidechain from 50-80Hz the Gate would probably not stop early enough! I often set this one to 100-150Hz so the sidechain filter can then be set up to the time that the “attack” starts and stops! That gives me more control! (But it depends on how the Basedrum sounds like!)

    GLD-80 / AR2412 / AR84 / Qu-16

    #35012
    Profile photo of Joe Hinkens
    Joe Hinkens
    Participant

    Your tips make sense on the vocals guys. I don’t think I’ll have a problem with needing them the more I think about it. No wedges and a pretty big stage. The two primary vocalists are very good with mic technique.

    The side chain filter for things like drums is making sense now. On my old desk it there was a ‘key filter’ that basically let you sweep to a desired frequency. With the side chain on the Allen & Heath, like everything else on the GLD, just gives added flexibility and function.

    I love this desk.[:)]

    Thanks,
    Joe

    GLD-80 w/M-DANTE, GLD-AR2412, MacBook Pro, Studio One 2

    #35014
    Profile photo of Stix
    Stix
    Participant

    The only gates I use on vocals are the clever Optogates. See here http://www.optogate.com/index_opto_uk.html
    They work great on small stages where there are a lot of open mic’s and high stage volume (rock bands etc) causing excessive bleed.
    I have also used on 8 back stage chorus microphones for a theatre show where I set one mic as a master ( with an Optogate) and then side chain gated all other chorus channels to it using the iLive internal gates with a very low threshold. If no one stood to sing in the master microphone then none of the other mic’s would be on! Worked a treat and saved lots of scene programming.

    Cheers

    Richard Howey
    Audio Dynamite Ltd
    IDR48/IDR16/T112/R72/Mixpad,Tweak,
    Dual M-Dante/DVS, 17″MBP/Logic 9/Custom Mackie Control

    #35015
    Profile photo of GCumbee
    GCumbee
    Participant

    Only thing with a lot of gates turning on/off is the change in the system. A few gates on drums and noisy guitars is not so bad but when you get a lot of front mics popping on/off the character of what is coming out of the speakers can get a bit whacky. I would for sure want fast attacks and slow releases so as not to be noticeable.. In many years of doing this I have never gated anything but toms and guitars.

    GLD 80
    AR2412

    #35018
    Profile photo of BobWitte
    BobWitte
    Participant

    We haven’t used any gates for years. Maybe lucky or with our analog setup we didn’t have them easily available.

    But I agree – minimal gating, otherwise it can become more noticeable then the problem you are trying to solve.

    quote:


    Originally posted by GCumbee

    Only thing with a lot of gates turning on/off is the change in the system. A few gates on drums and noisy guitars is not so bad but when you get a lot of front mics popping on/off the character of what is coming out of the speakers can get a bit whacky. I would for sure want fast attacks and slow releases so as not to be noticeable.. In many years of doing this I have never gated anything but toms and guitars.

    GLD 80
    AR2412


    Bob

    GLD80, AR2412, 2xAR84, Dante, GLD Remote

    #35019
    Profile photo of BobWitte
    BobWitte
    Participant

    Plus, aren’t Gates a Microsoft thing and we use Mac’s. [:)]

    Bob

    GLD80, AR2412, 2xAR84, Dante, GLD Remote

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