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Exclusive: Allen & Heath provides ‘clarity and precision’ for Bryan Ferry tour

Bryan Ferry’s monitor engineer Tom Howat has hailed the “clarity and precision” of Allen & Health’s dLive S Class mixing system, which is currently being used to manage monitors on the star’s current US and European tour.

Supplied by Britannia Row Productions in Europe and Clair Bros in the USA, dLive was selected by monitor engineer Tom Howat who describes it as having a “full sound”.

“Bryan’s monitor mix requires constant, active mixing throughout each song at a very detailed level,” Howat told Pro Sound News Europe. “Bryan has an outstanding ear for the songs’ musical arrangements, and dLive is really helping me deliver this.”

The system comprises a S5000 Surface with DM64 MixRack, DX32 Expander Rack, and two IP8 controllers for remote access. Using IP8 controllers allows Howat to make changes to other musicians’ mixes while staying on Ferry’s mix on the main surface.

“Mixing in-ear monitors for a 10-piece band comprising some very well-known and experienced musicians requires a monitor desk that will deliver a detailed, full sound,” said Howat. “dLive’s built-in compression and FX make a huge contribution towards achieving this, along with plenty of scenes – 50 plus and counting!”

The dLive’s recent firmware updates, v1.4 and now v1.5, provide new features that have enabled Howat to focus on Ferry’s mix during the shows. He is using the new Dyn8 units, new FX units, tube pre-amp modelling features on all 4 saxophones, and the extended choice of compression – 16T on most instruments and Peak Limiter 76 on all vocals.

“I’m loving the new features, particularly the Dimension Chorus on acoustic guitars! The enhanced level of recall filtering in v1.5 is a major step forward in the flexibility of the scene automation,” continued Howat.

“I have once again deployed the excellent IP8 controllers, one hooked up to the monitor desk which enables me to make known and calibrated changes to other musicians’ mixes whilst staying on Bryan’s mix on the main surface. The second IP8 is deployed as a back-up for the FOH system, featuring most of the input channels mapped over the six fader banks contributing to a pre-fade stereo mix.”