View Full Version : signal overload
01-25-2010, 10:06 AM
I've got an older Fender MX5200 series mixer and seem to be having signal overload problems,not even half way up on my mains and my led level meters are lighting up into the red.Does it matter which channels the instruments are in? I've got all my vocals first then my guitars,then bass,and after that the drums.seem to be getting a decent mix as far as sound,and the channel peak lights are not lighting.but meters are showing high output.also I'm not using my subgroups either would that have any effect?:
01-25-2010, 01:39 PM
Sounds like a classic gain staging issue/misunderstanding. You have to realize that all the signal inputs add together so if all inputs are in use the signal is going to be pretty hot by the time it reached the main bus. Hopefully you're not one of those guys that has a thing about running all the faders at unity, or one that mixes with the input trim pots because both practices are flawed.
Start with all the faders down and use the trim pots on each channel to get a pretty hot but not clipping signal on the channel meters. Don't touch these knobs again unless you notice something that is peaking too high. Then bring up the channel faders one at a time to somewhere around 3/4 travel and build a decent mix in the headphones. Next is the mains, if all the other subgroup controls are down you should be able to use most of the fader sweep without driving the meters to high.. but it depends how many inputs you have, with a full board you won't be able to push the fader up as much. If that happens reduce all the channel faders and equal amount. Once you get something you're happy with bring up the level controls on any outboard gear inline so that the signal is about the same as the mains signal level if the components have meters, unity if not. Then bring up the amp gains until you get the output level you want or the clipping lights start to flash. Note you can do all this without the speakers attached so it's something you can experiment with at home and not bring the cops calling.
01-25-2010, 03:34 PM
Thanks Paul!! That's basically what I have done as far as setting trims.Some faders are at unity some are not mostly the vocal and bass everything else (drums and guitars) are way lower.I've got a very limited" basic knowledge "of my gain stage.Mostly got my start with car audio,which is a whole different animals that live sound.That and I'm worried about blowing stuff,everyone else in the band is like run it hard,Can't seem to make them understand more isn't always better!!
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