Founded in 2008 by brothers Bill and Ben Kristijanto, BNY is a family-owned and -operated business that provides a wide variety of services, sourcing audio, lighting and video products to offer fully-packaged nation-wide tour support, festivals, corporate events design and installation. Their clients include Hillary for America campaigns, the C-Suite Network, University of Nebraska, and many more.
Ryan “Fig” Bonfiglio, BNY’s project manager and front of house engineer, talks about the benefits of working with the 64-channel Waves eMotion LV1 Live mixer, their setup and their use of Waves plugins.
“It is hard to find a console that is as versatile as the eMotion LV1. As a rental house, we do all sorts of events, from concerts to talking heads, and it’s not easy to have one console that can successfully cover the demands of such a variety of environments. For us, the most important criterion for a console has to be the sonic quality, and the LV1 definitely has that.
“We immediately fell in love with the sonic quality and the tone of the preamp and converters, which in our opinion is an essential part of a good sounding console. However, it doesn’t stop there – the most exciting part of mixing on an LV1 is the customization of the channel strip since we have the freedom of using the gear that we want for that specific channel, and are not forced to use the one channel strip that the manufacturer gives you.”
He continues, “With the components of the LV1 being modular, it really helps us customize our workflow for a specific event that we are using it for. Once you understand how the system works, the possibilities of what you can do with this are pretty much endless.
“As an example, for one project, we created two custom racks for a four-piece band: an front of house rack and a stage rack. The stage rack is loaded with wireless microphones and guitar packs, IEM, Kemper amps, video server, audio server, sampler server, and whatever else the band needed. We also used the stage rack as a hub for equipment on stage. For instance, we placed a DiGiGrid IOX at the drums and patched all the mics to that and then we ran an Ethernet cord back to the switch.”
He adds, “The front of house rack consists of two eMotion LV1 consoles: a main console, which we call the ‘A console,’ and a production console, which we call the ‘B console.’ The A console has two SoundGrid Extreme Servers (for DSP redundancy), one DiGiGrid IOX, two touchscreen monitors, and a Mac Mini running Windows 10 Pro. This side of the console is what we use to mix the band for the house mix and monitor duties. We are able to accomplish this with very minimal delay to the IEM mix by using the ‘delay groups’ feature of the console, which is an amazing feature that most users overlook.
“The B console has a SoundGrid Extreme Server, a DiGiGrid IOX, a touchscreen monitor, and a Mac Mini running Windows 10 Pro. This console is running music-playback and an emcee mic, which allows us to change over bands and not lose the LV1 house audio. I also am running Compass by Meyer Sound, Smaart, and Wireless Workbench by Shure, which allows me to tune and organize my system all from one location without needing additional devices.
“This custom configuration saves so much time during setup and teardown – I can un-lid the console, plug in power, plug in the CAT6 snake, turn on the Mac Minis, and in under five minutes I have sound running. As a side note, with our customized Mac Mini running Windows 10 Pro as we have configured it, we can get the LV1 console up in about one minute from the time you push the power button to LV1 opening up automatically and ready to mix! Not only that, but the computer is really stable as there are no other unnecessary functions in the tuned Windows 10, so it acts like a hardware unit made for the LV1.”
On using Waves plugins, he notes, “In a talking head situation, for example, our must-have plugins are the Waves NS1 noise suppressor, which is an easy and quick way to reduce noise, and it works very smoothly – better than using gates or an expander; the Waves C6 multiband compressor, as it keeps the tone and proximity (especially as people tend to move their heads around); and the Waves X-FDBK, as no one wants feedback! It would be nearly impossible to find that combo with compressors and EQ in a channel strip on a console other than the LV1.
“We have also done some preliminary work with the Waves Dugan Speech in the shop. We are excited to be using it at our upcoming high-profile corporate events in May, where we will be using multiple lavalier microphones at the same time. As difficult as lav mics can be, the LV1 can make them sound very clean and natural.
“Using tools like the Waves NS1 noise suppressor, the Waves eMo-Q4 equalizer, Waves eMo-D5 dynamics, and the Waves C6 gives us a very natural and clean sound. Using the Waves Dugan Speech on top of that will give us more flexibility from the same console, and it will allow us to do all sorts of events without having to stock different consoles in our inventory.”
On why BNY chose to use eMotion LV1 consoles, he comments, “When we set eyes on the LV1, the first thing that intrigued us was its scalability, which means our rental department wouldn’t have to stock different brands and console sizes in order to do different jobs. What I mean by that is that we can send the same LV1 rig out to do a simple corporate AV event and once it’s done, turn it around and send it out on tour by just changing or adding a few things. This means our consoles stay out more since we don’t have to stock as many, and it cuts down costs as well.
“When we received a demo rig, we were immediately blown away with the sound quality, which is expected from Waves, as we are very familiar with Waves plugins in the studio. To us, sound is the most important thing about an ‘audio’ console; it just needs to sound good. We also love how user-friendly the LV1 is designed. Our audio engineers can get a mix sounding good much faster, because they get to choose the tools that they like and get the result that they want quickly.
“With most consoles, an engineer has to make do or adapt with a fixed configuration that is pre-designed. However, with the eMotion LV1, the engineer gets to create or choose what they want in each channel. In other words, the LV1 adapts to the engineer. Last but not least, Waves’ customer support team is one of the best in the industry.”