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FOH Engineer Sony Soebowo Utilizing Waves eMotion LV1 & Plugins On Tour With Naif And Raisa

Soebowo's eMotion LV1 mixer runs on a Waves Axis One computer with a SoundGrid Extreme Server-C, and dual SoundStudio STG units for I/O.
Soebowo at front of house with the Waves eMotion LV1 live mixer he employs for two popular Indonesian artists.

Front of house engineer Sony Soebowo is utilizing tools from Waves Audio, including an eMotion LV1 live mixer and plugins, in his mix work with Naif and Raisa, two of Indonesia’s most popular performers.

Naif is noted for a “retro” sound and style, while Raisa is a pop/R&B artist who’s received numerous awards, including the MAMA (Mnet Asian Music Award) in the categories of Best Pop Female Solo Artist, Best Pop Album, Best Song, Asian Artist of the Year and Best Vocal Performance.

Soebowo’s eMotion LV1 mixer runs on a Waves Axis One computer with a SoundGrid Extreme Server-C, a SoundStudio STG-1608 for FOH I/O, and a SoundStudio STG-2412 for stage box I/O. He usually mixes on a single screen because he uses DCAs (Digitally Controlled Amplifier) as his groups function since the mix is already set – resulting in little need for major tweaking during shows.

Further, for recording and playback/virtual sound check, he employs Waves Tracks Live. The bands use IEMs, and as backup, or if there are wireless frequency issues, they’re provided with wedges and Soebowo is set up in parallel to switch if problems happen, even mid-show.

Usually, he doesn’t need for the band to be on stage for sound check, except for line check. The two bands draw crowds that can run from 2,000 to 20,000, and whether at a small or large venue, he notes that the eMotion LV1 meets his requirements.

“I chose the LV1 especially for its portability, along with the crucial fact that its sound is amazingly pristine, almost CD-like,” Soebowo says. “As Indonesia is a relatively large country, touring consists of quite a lot of travelling from show to show either by flights, car or trucking, and the LV1 is the only console that can be carried effortlessly and also be easily checked into flights. My current setup travels in just three portable flight cases.

“Using the LV1 guarantees great sound wherever I go, unlike the alternative, which would be using the house desks in different venues,” he continues. “Also, as I’m often working with these two bands in parallel, the ability to store and recall scenes and use DCAs/Mix Groups considerably reduces setup time and guarantees great sound at all venues. Besides the portability and exquisite sound, the LV1 is really super-quick to set up, and it is a rugged machine as well. I did a show recently in a stadium and it started raining. Raindrops were pouring on my screen and I just continued mixing. This would have been impossible with a regular mixer.”

Soebowo also provides a rundown of his application of the plugins: “I’ve been using Waves MultiRack for a long time now, and the ability to use Waves plugins within the console is a major advantage. “My ‘must-haves’ are the Abbey Road TG Mastering Chain plugin, which I use on the Master Bus, as it ensures a really clean and powerful sound. The Vitamin Sonic Enhancer gives that extra ‘shine’ to the overall mix, and the Q10 Equalizer enables me to make fine EQ changes, which are needed for different venues.

“I use the F6 Floating-Band Dynamic EQ and a choice of plugins from the Waves SSL 4000 Collection via parallel compression on all of my groups for controlling and sculpting the sound in order to ‘sit’ the different groups in the mix,” he adds. “I have the Scheps Omni Channel on almost all the input channels; it has excellent controls, analog warmth and low DSP usage. For drums and bass I insert the CLA MixHub to get a great blend and vibe, and to match the sound character for each of them.

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“The SSL G-Master Buss Compressor and F6 Floating-Band Dynamic EQ help me control guitar and keyboard, and I also use it with a side chain from vocal for shaping the mid-high frequency. The Waves C6 Multiband Compressor really helps as this plugin assists me to control the dynamic equalization and shape the sound when I need to keep the dynamic of the band but still maintain their musical sound. And of course, Waves’ TRACT System Calibration, which is indispensable considering the diverse venues we set up in.”

Soebowo concludes, “Specifically, when mixing Raisa’s vocals, I go for the CLA MixHub which provides me with the most unique vocal character and the perfect blend with the surrounding instruments. I insert the CLA-76 Compressor/Limiter as well in order to control the dynamic level of the vocals.”

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