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Worship Musician! Magazine - JanFeb2012

Worship Musician! Magazine - JanFeb2012


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Published by CMS Productions
Practical Help for Worship Teams
Practical Help for Worship Teams

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Published by: CMS Productions on Jan 23, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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This month I am going to present two tools
every church will want. I know only I’ve
dreamed of stuff like this.

Need Gain?

First off, have you ever wished you
could get just a little more gain out of the
children’s choir? We, at a recent Christmas
production I was doing, I ran into that very
problem. The problem is, no matter how
cute they are, most of the time they are not
very loud. Cute doesn’t translate, when
Mom can’t hear them.

Enter the Rupert Neve Portico 5045 Primary
Source Enhancer. Wow, that’s a mouthful,
and the name is almost longer than the users
manual, but more on that later.

This device is used as an insert on a channel
or a group, and honestly it just gives you
more gain before feedback starts ringing.
Now, I’ve used the feedback-
busters before, where you have
to teach it some frequencies, and
possibly even set it to “live” . .
.but they don’t reduce feedback
until they hear it… and in my
opinion that is too late.

First of all, this box is a little too
simple to believe and the manual
is literally about 2 paragraphs
long. I cannot even fnd any
info anywhere on how it actually
works. Honestly, it just works.
I have no idea how, and the
website and manual are just as
elusive as to what’s happening
inside, so I will do my best to
explain how I used it and how it
worked. If you fnd any tech mumbo-jumbo
about how it’s doing it, please send it to me.

The 5045 has three knobs: Time Constant,
Threshold, and Depth.
Time Constant: This is basically how long
it takes to react. In my best guess, this is
similar to the release on a compressor.
Threshold: Set this knob so the green
“Process Active” LED lights on soft passages.
If you set this too high and the “process”
light does not light up, it will sound a little
like there is a gate on the channel, but I am
pretty sure this it is not that simple. Keep

Depth: This little magic knob is how much
more gain you would like before the mic (or

mics, if inserted on a group) starts ringing.

In my testing, as mentioned earlier, I was
having trouble getting any real gain out
of the kids. So I called in a last minute
favor and had a one of these overnighted
in. The following night I put it directly
on the insert of the channel for the Kids
Choir, which was a single Shure KSM44.
I had already inserted 10 very narrow
parametric flters to ring the mic out, and
yes, I was running a digital soundboard
with plug-ins to be able to do this; but
even with the power of this high-end
console I couldn’t get the kids singing
above the orchestra.

So I engaged the 5045 and had the
kids sing a little while I set the Threshold.
I went with the manuals suggested setting
of C for Time Constant, and arbitrarily
selected 10db of additional gain. Well
I wish I had a
technical reason,
but all I can say is
I was actually able
to turn that mic
up an additional
10db before it

Head out to my
website if you
don’t believe me.
I have a video
posted that shows
how I can literally
turn the fader up
10db more when
this device is in the
chain. I’m having
a hard time not

wanting a full rack of these.

Digital console folks… no, the 5045
is not available as a plug-in… but you
can insert it like an “old school” analog
device, because that’s what it is. No
digital trickery or magic internally… just
good ‘ole analog circuits that are really
frustrating me because I NEED to know
how it works, but I digress.

Yamaha has partnered with Rupert
to bring this box to market. As of
the writing of this article it was not
listed on Rupert’s website, but can
be found by searching http://www.
for 5045.

I also used it on a subgroup that had
all 8 of my choir mics, as well as the
pulpit mic, and both of those setups were
equally as stunning. I am literally blown
away by this box.

It goes for about $1,800, but is worth
every penny. And it is a two-channel
device, so it can be used on your pulpit
and choir subgroup. So that’s a measly
$900 a channel, which is priceless if you
are having feedback.

How Loud Is It?

Speaking of Priceless . . .How about a
device that can tell everyone who says
it is too loud to go away and let you do
your job?

The software is called TREND, it uses a
Galaxy CM150 SPL meter and a USB
to RS232 interface to fgure out just how
loud is “too loud.”

The best part of this package is: once
you get it setup, it can be set to email a
report to you, your pastor, and whoever
really cares. The report is output in very
nice plain English, so even someone who
does not speak “tech” can understand.

“TREND Report: 12 Dec 2011, Average Level
86.3dB (00h 34m 16s). This was UNDER
the recommended max level by 3.7dB and is
allowed for another 02h 14m total for the day.”

The above is a line
from the email that I’d
gladly cut and paste to
someone complaining
about sound levels.
You can state that you
run a state of the art

used by professionals
and here is the report
from the service in

This is obviously not
meant to be used as
a “told you so,” but if
nothing else, it’s a great
way to let the senior staff
know that all systems are
in check and we are not
damaging anyone ears.

I personally know the people behind
TREND, and their goal is not to see
how loud we can get it, but to seriously
address levels that are too loud and offer
tools to allow us to do this somewhat
crazy job we have of dealing with
everyone’s opinions. The software is
completely customizable, and with a little
guidance can even take into effect if your
congregation is more white collar or blue
collar. You see “How loud it is” is more
dependent on the total noise exposure
per day for a person than the short time
they are in the service. So if you have a
blue collar worker congregation for the
most part, it stands to reason that they

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