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Feedback issues during live band performances

Feedback issues during live performances... Main volume at about 3 or 4 and mic volumes at 1 to 3. Bass, treble and mid levels are all about in the middle and no compression is added. Can you help me figure this out?

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  • jeremyreddoo May 16, 2009

    We use pretty decent mics... all over $100. My brother's a guitar player and his probably gives us the biggest howl. He has an NV Cobalt mic ($70 or something like that). He said he's going to get an SM58 and be done with it. We played a show last night w/ all of our settings about the same as usual w/no feedback. The only difference from past shows were that our moniters were about a foot further away from our mics. I wonder if that's all it takes...

  • Samuel Charles Spriggs May 11, 2010

    I play lead guitar in a band and also sing. We battle this problem often. Do you use stage monitors? What type PA system do you have? Can you briefly describe how you setup? Where are mics, speakers, monitors, etc.?

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We use 57's & 58's and still get the problem if the setup isn't right. Biggest feedback problem, some time ago, was caused by micing the lead guitar amp -- we eliminated that mic and ran direct out from the lead guitar amp to the mixer. (We were even getting feedback caused by the lead guitar pickups getting too close to a speaker or mic).

Another adjustment we made was to lean the stage monitors forward (instead of pointing them directly at the voaclists) so their dirvers were not on the same axis as the microphones.

We also tweak high end EQ on the mixer and tweak the reverb send.

Don't know which change had the most effect, but we haven't had the feedback problem lately.

Charlie

Posted on May 16, 2009

  • Samuel Charles Spriggs May 17, 2009

    If the gig you played last night was a different venue for you, then it may be the venue acoustics which made the difference. More natural venue reverb means more chance of feedback loops.



    And, as you did, moving the monitors further from mics should reduce probability of feedback as well.



    You might experiment with your brother's guitar with pickup volume and treble to max -- move the guitar around to different locations on the set and see if things start to howl.



    Charlie

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This is clearly a microphone problem. You need to review your mics and use a suitable type. Ensure the speakers are not aimed at the mics too.

Posted on May 12, 2009

  • Peter Cass May 17, 2009

    The SM58 mics or similar should eliminate the mic issue. You may need an equaliser to get rid of any peaks in the foldback or room. 
    Some speakers with horn tweeters are very directional so a small movement in the speaker can help. 
    Maybe sing closer to the mics- the sm58 is designed for being very close to the singer.

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2 Answers

I get ALOT of feed back, why? I can't use it like that. I've talk with the a Tech and he said I needed to stand further away from the amp, which I am.


This sounds like your gain is too high. Adjust it down. Every mic has different gain settings so you can't just blanket this with the other one works fine. Is this wired or wireless?

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Feedback is caused by having the volume up too high or being too close to the speakers. Turn mic down a bit, feedback goes away.

Better speakers and mic will help.

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3. Repeat the same for monitors. Turn off the main volume and then bring up the monitor main volume to the desired level first, then set eq. Now your monitor eq is set properly. Remember or mark the position of the monitor volume.
4. Set up microphone - plug a mic into channel 1 with volume all the way down. Speak or sing into the microphone and adjust the GAIN until you see the clip light, then back down a litttle on the gain. Put the monitor and main volumes back up to the mark from step 2. Now adjust the volume and monitor send on the mic channel to the desired loudness first before adjusting the mic channel eq. Use subtractive eq method to minimize distortion and feedback. ...i.e. if the mic is bassy then turn down the lows, do not ADD highs. If the mic needs bass, turn down the highs.

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Proper placement of mics versus the speakers of a PAS is important to avoid feedback. Your speakers need to be toward the audience from where the mic is. If the mic can "hear" the speakers you will likely have feedback. The mic should work even though it is a consumer grade mic.
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Step 4. Then check the volume of the Mic Volume is full and there is
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