Midas networked system handles LEA Awards
A network of Midas PRO9 and PRO6 live audio systems and an analogue XL4 was used at FOH and monitors respectively for the recent PRG LEA German Live Entertainment Awards held at the Frankfurt Festival Hall.
The event featured top acts on stage and celebrities on the red carpet. Bandleader James Last was the surprise guest while Michael Bolton, German country star Helene Fischer, mezzo soprano Anne Sofie von Otter and pop artist Juli entertained the crowd.
PRG's Kai Reiss handled FOH duties for the artists on the PRO9 following some training with Lars Lüdemann from German distributor Mega Audio. "It's the best sounding digital desk I've used so far," he says. "It immediately reminded me of the first time I encountered a Midas XL3 back in the early nineties. The EQ is second to none and I really liked the dynamics and effects - I've been a great fan of the Klark Teknik DN780 reverb so it is nice to have an emulation of this unit back in Midas digital desks.
"At first I was wary of having only 12+4 faders to handle 80 channels in such a complex situation, but thanks to POP(ulation) groups and VCAs it worked out much better than I could have imagined.
"It didn't take long to get used to the workflow of the desk and I really enjoyed mixing on it. The guest engineers also picked it up very quickly. If I could choose I would take the Midas out again any time, and am really looking forward to doing so!"
Reiss found the Midas consoles' integrated AES50 network a very powerful tool for distributing and collecting signals throughout the venue. "It was also easy to set up," he explains. "We had three Midas DL431 splitters and one DL 451 modular I/O box equipped with analogue out cards as outputs for the monitors. Connection to the system drive was analogue into a Midas XL88 which summed the PRO9 and the XL4 and divided the signal into the sound system processors, using the I/O cards in the back of the PRO9 to connect to local equipment. We connected the video signal from the Sennheiser WSM software and used the built in KVM switch on the PRO6 monitor console to show the status from the IEM transmitters on the console's screen. This is a very cool feature for a monitor engineer, giving them the opportunity to watch the important parameters of the in-ear systems without moving away from the desk.
On monitors, Thomas Hofer was using a Midas PRO6 with Klark Teknik DN9331 Rapide graphic controller to handle the setup of in ears and wedges. "I'm in love with the sound of the PRO6," enthuses Hofer. "The desk's beautiful EQ is amazing. The workflow is different from other digital desks on the market, not so computer-like and is a more analogue, musical way of working. It sounds and feels more organic. You can prepare your shows well with the offline editor.
"The PRO6's hardware is very professional. The screens are the best on the market for working in daylight, and the knobs don't feel like a toy.
"Working with the PRO6 configured in a network with the PRO9 at FOH was wonderful, and we were able to easily cross patch signals from both desks."
In addition to the Midas digital desks, an XL4 handled hosts, voiceovers, DV, jingles, walk on/off music, lectern mics etc.
Since 2006, the PRG Live Entertainment Award (PRG LEA) has honoured outstanding work and achievements in the concert and event industry in German-speaking territories.
Photo: Kai Reiss operating the PRO9 front of house at the LEA Awards