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Advanced Small Console Techniques: Maximizing The Available Feature Set
What about those times when, for whatever reason, a big console is not available? That's the time for ingenuity and some special techniques
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Audio Group As FX Send
So, you’re using four auxes for monitors and two for vocal effects - how are you going to get reverb on the drums?

Sure, the same ‘verb could be used for everything, but where’s the fun in that?

One trick is to assign the drums you’d like to have reverb on (I often leave out the kick drum) to a sub-group, and use the sub-group output as an effects send.

If you have a 2-in/2-out effects box, assign the drums to two sub-groups and you have stereo drums with stereo effects. Use the group’s insert loop and the mixing feature of the effects box, and you have it without the need for an effects send or return.

Pretty cool, huh? This trick can also be applied to vocals, horn sections, or any group of inputs.

Uncommon Insert Hardware
Everyone is familiar with dynamics processors and equalizers inserted into input channels. However, these are not the only useful tools you can insert into an input channel.

For example, many smaller mixers do not include a variable high-pass filter (HPF). The advent of digital loudspeaker processors finds a great many analog crossovers sitting around gathering dust. Just connect an insert send to the input of an analog crossover, then take the output from the crossover’s “high” output, and there you have it, a variable HPF.

Many common analog crossovers have a frequency range both above and below the frequency of a console’s switched HPF, which is usually 80 Hz to 100 Hz. If you don’t have an analog crossover laying around, the glut of these kinds of units on the used market makes them very affordable.

That 4-channel, 2-way crossover pulled from the old monitor system can now be four channels of variable HPF, all in a single rack space.

Source: Live Sound International

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