Among Britain’s biggest musical exports of the past two decades, Editors are currently on the road promoting their latest album Violence. At FOH, engineer Adam Pendse is running the show using a Waves eMotion LV1 Live Mixer and Waves plug-ins. ‘My LV1 rig is very compact,’ he says. ‘I take a case with two touchscreens, a pair of DiGiGrid MGB interfaces for stage inputs, an I/O device for FOH, and a pair of Cisco SG300 network switches. I’ve got a few external hardware units I use on the mix bus – analogue EQs and analogue compressors.

FOH engineer Adam Pendse with Waves eMotion LV1 Live Mixer‘For soundcheck, I use the eMotion LV1 with Waves Tracks Live. Our monitor engineer Chris Barton uses a DiGiCo SD10 console on stage, where I take a Madi split from the DiGiCo SD-Rack to the DiGiGrid MGBs to get my inputs from the stage. I then use optical to get the signal to front-of-house. So, the local request for festivals is essentially two lines of optical, that’s it.

‘The eMotion LV1 has been my mixer for every Editors show since 2017, in every venue and festival and for most broadcast mixes – hundreds of shows at this point. I was always looking for a top-tier scalable sounding system, something you could work on at home and then take out on the road. So, when the LV1 came across my radar, it immediately resonated with me – I liked the flexibility of the interface and the fact that you can configure it in so many different ways to suit the show you’re doing.’

‘One of the main things I like about the LV1 is the workflow: the speed of use, and how quickly I can get to a plug-in. It’s very streamlined and laid out in such an intuitive way that anyone can walk up and start mixing with it within five minutes. The visual feedback of the LV1 is one of my favourite aspects. When I use two touch screens, I have access to literally everything I need instantly.’

Turning his attention to Waves plug-ins, he comments: ‘I’ve found the F6 Dynamic EQ to be a really powerful plug-in. I use it for so many things. I use the sidechain feature a lot. The classic trick of old was to sidechain the bass guitar compressor to the kick drum; and you know, that works. But with the F6, instead of killing the whole frequency range of the bass, I can just make it dark in that frequency area where the kick drum and the bass cross over. If you apply that way of thinking to all the other channels, you have so many possibilities. I find it invaluable – it’s just opened up a new world of being able to tame specific frequencies or groups of frequencies. I still have the C6 Multiband Compressor on some of the guitar channels. Being able to shape and tame the guitars with compression, expansion and equalisation makes it one of the most indispensable tools for me. For compression, I mostly use the CLA Classic Compressor Series across guitar channels, and the API 2500 I use for bass.

‘For utility plug-ins, I use InPhase a lot, mostly to line up drums. But I also use it on bus outputs as a delay to line them up if needed. Occasionally, I use the WNS Noise Suppressor to clean up noisy sources – having access to that in a live situation is amazing. To deal with some odd things in specific venues, I find the Waves GEQ to be a very helpful plug-in. So for me, live mixing with the LV1 and Waves plug-ins running inside of it is just so useful. I wouldn’t want to do a gig without them.’

Lead vocalist/keyboard player/rhythm guitarist Tom Smith gets some special treatment: ‘I’m using external inserts for his vocal channel, as well as a lot of Waves plug-ins,’ Pendse explains. ‘He actually has three vocal channels, and they individually have on them Vocal Rider and the F6 Dynamic EQ. The latter is doing dynamic EQ, side-chained with the drum overheads in order to tame some of the harshness depending on stage position. The visual feedback of the F6’s real-time analyser is one of the best out there – so useful in a live environment. I then send these three vocal channels to a vocal auxiliary group, where I potentially have another instance of F6, the Primary Source Expander, the Sibilance vocal de-esser, the CLA-76 compressor and the Vitamin plug-in.’

And of the LV1, he summarises: ‘The bands I’ve worked with look at the system, they see a PC with touchscreens running some software – and they’re really open to that. They see that as something very natural and almost obvious, because that’s what they’re used to in the studio; they don’t see why it should be any different live. The people who are most curious about working with an all-software mixer are those on the technical side – production managers and other sound engineers.

‘The first time I took it out for a festival run, I was at front of house, talking for hours every day about the system because it sparked a lot of interest because it was something people hadn’t seen before. Then, every time, by the time the show is over, they appreciated how powerful it is.’

More: www.waves.com

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