Support Tutorials

Stories From the Road

By Allen Rowand

February 24, 2008

05: Cleveland, or Wait Just a .52ms

Often, when we go to a venue the house already has underbalcony speakers permanently mounted. If they're good quality, we'll use them since it saves us having to put ours up; no sense in duplication, and there's already 60 -odd boxes of other gear to be struck, packed and loaded on the truck.

It's pretty common for the house's delay settings to be different than what I want for our system, so I take my own measurements. I put a mic behind the underbalcony speaker, and take a delay measurement from our vocal cluster (my "time 0") with that mic. Then I take a delay measurement from the underbalcony speaker, subtract that from the first measurement and that gives me the time I need to delay the underbalcony system by to align it with the vocal cluster.

This difference can be all over the map normally, but this time 'Foo told me that the delay was off by .52ms. That's right, half a millisecond. I did the measurement again (to make sure that I wasn't being fooled) and got the exact same result. The tour's engineer looked at me and said, "You're gonna do it, aren't you?" to which I replied, "Of course!" and added .52ms of delay to our processor.

At the next measurement… .001ms difference. Repeated the test… .002ms. That's pretty darned accurate, and why I use SpectraFoo.

Until next time,