Mix engineer and production manager Bryony October recently took to the road with British singer songwriter Delilah, and at the same time became an early adopter of the new Harman Soundcraft Si Performer digital console that builds on the successful Si platform while also incorporating a DMX lighting interface.
October needed a minimum of 31 inputs in mixing the five-piece band’s monitor in-ears from front of house. But her chosen console also needed a small footprint in order to fit into a splitter van (along with IEM rack and mics).
Knowing that this tour would not warrant full production support, October had earlier contacted Soundcraft to see if they had any new consoles in prospect. “The timing couldn’t have been better as the Si Performer was just being released,” she notes.
The Si Performer’s FaderGlow and color backlit name displays on every channel proved valuable. “It has screens on each channel, so you can see the compressors and gates, and the FaderGlow changes color so you never make a mistake when moving from FOH to monitor mixes,” she explains. “It also turns the system EQ red so you can clearly see the graphic.”
“The touch screen is easy to get around quickly, with the one-touch easy mix with buttons across the top of the faders,” October adds. “Finally, I love the magnetic iPad notes pad which is very handy.”
The entire show mix is placed on the desk’s top layer, with October sub-mixing the drums to a group bus and also Delilah’s vocals and some of the drums to the Lexicon effects.
As for Delilah’s personal monitor mix, she says, “It’s all about the vocal level, reverbs [the desk contains four stereo Lexicon effects engines] and a low mix of everything else. It’s about creating an open and ambient sound so that the artist feels part of the show and can interact with the audience.”
Sonically, October believes, the desk is excellent, and although she hasn’t had the opportunity to use the DMX interface, she notes that “every single venue I arrived at knew that this was the desk with DMX.”