Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Dave Rat Blog - Aaargh, intermittant belt packs!

So we switched to a Shure PSM1000 system for Chili Peppers in-ears, which have been working really well. The diversity dual antenna packs helped overcome noise from the LED stage. The internal pack volume control helped get the pack volume knobs where the musicians want to have them. and the sound quality and stereo separation is the best I've heard on a multi frequency tunable pack.

So here we are over 6 months into using them and we are starting to see packs dropping out during the show. After some poking around, we found the intermittent packs were losing battery power.

After digging further, I have found that the cause is loose positive terminals in the belt packs. Sometimes they are very loose and easy to spot, other times it is nearly impossible to tell....

Except if you get a sharp object and try to spin the terminal, the packs that have terminals that spin are also the pack that are intermittent. The packs that are intermittent are also the packs have spinning terminals. So far out of 16 packs, we're are down 5 but bought 2 replacements, which leave us with 13 fully functional.

The issue appears to be that the positive terminals in the packs are most likely crimped and either needs a better crimp or to be soldered.

I have actually seen this issue before, way back when I worked at Mattel Toys. At one point either a vendor switch or change in manufacturing resulted in the 9 volt battery power connectors having the same issue: spinning terminals. The games would work for a while and then while the customer was playing, it would loose power and reset mid game. Then the customer would send them back and I would get t change the power connector.

So, super curious to see how this pans out. Wondering if we are alone with this experience and working on getting things dialed back in.
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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Dave Rat - Sooo Slow

I love surprises, and I had the wonderful surprise of hearing the answer to the question I asked Thomas from Highlite Sound "so, how many L-Acoustic boxes do we have out here on this tour?"

 and the breakdown for the gear and placements for Gelsenkirchen are:

Main system Left/Right - 14 K1 + 4 Kara underhung per side
 Outer system L/R- 16 K1 + 6 Kara underhung per side
Outer outer L/R - 6 Kara per side
9 Kara Center cluster
Two Kara per side as deck fillson the lip of the stage
Three delay clusters each with 12 K1

Totaling a whopping and imprssive:
96 K1,  56 SB28 and 45 KARA

Now on to other curiosities....

So we are all set up in Gelsenkirchen at Veltins Arena and wandering about I notice the seats behind the stage are slid back, ooooh, lets go look!
So, the seats roll back on the these rails

Driven by electric motors

 and you can walk underneath

to find a huge grass field outside

 that is also on wheels and tracks and 

the entire gassy football (soccer) field splits in two and rolls outside to get some sunshine and move out of the way for rock shows and other events. So cool and I ask 

"How long does it take to roll the grass out?" 

"What? Fourteen hours? wow!" I'm surprised, "why so long?" so she says 

"Because it is very heavy" Ha! I guess that's pretty obvious and can you imagine having the gig of spending 14 hours watching the grass roll, heck I bet the grass is taller and needs to be mowed as well after moving.

OK, a soccer field is 100 meters or 330 feet. It takes 14 hours for the 2 halves to slide out and they travel maybe an extra 85 feet or so to clear the bleachers. 1/2x330+85=250feet in 14 hours. 17.85 feet per hour, 3.57 inches per minute or about 300 hours to travel a mile.

And how about a look in that little tent three photos up?Ahh, it's Adam's world! Our European pro tools live recorder guy.

 And a straggling pic from last tour leg, Public Image was surprisingly captivating to see

Some new cool graphics have been showing up in the peppers set

So lets give a shout out to Scott and Leif and may as well dig up an older photo of them looking 'cool' as always

Next stop, Prague and will blog an amazingly cool seminar adventure.