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Q: Can I visit your shop?

A: 20Sound does not operate a public shop front as such, all items available for hire are shown on the website along with the day hire rate. Call or email to request a quote and then we can arrange collection from one of our storage locations. If you can't see what you are looking for on the website just ask!


Q: I tried the mobile number but no one answered.

A: We may be out-of-range because we are visiting a country location or sometimes when working as sound engineers we may turn our mobile phones off for the duration of the performance. Thank you for your understanding. For urgent requests please send a text message or otherwise email us details of your enquiry and you will usually receive a reply by that evening.


Q: I am organising a community concert and don't know what equipment I will need - what do I do?

A: Simply let us know about your function and the proposed date and we will be able to help you work out your requirements and come up with a firm quote.


Q: The venue where my event is to be held already has a PA system installed, why would I need to hire anything else?

A: The installed PA systems found in many community halls are often quite basic, old and often poorly maintained. Even if they are working correctly, most of them were designed for basic announcements and background music. If you have invited a band to play the hall, the installed systems typically will not have sufficient mixer channels and the quality and power of the system will not be up to the standard that the artists require. The PA systems 20Sound have available for hire are touring grade, full range systems that provide the necessary power, quality and features that musicians demand.


Q: Can we use part your equipment and part our equipment?

A: If you are 'dry hiring', of course you are welcome to hire specific items to compliment your gear. However if you want us to be involved with the setup and/or operation then we will need to use all our own gear.


Q: The band that we are hiring for our function supplies their own equipment - would we need your services?

A: The majority of bands play gigs at pubs and private parties with minimal gear, often trying to mix the sound themselves, which is difficult when you are also trying to play an instrument. OK, you have seen this hot young band at the pub and they were great! You ask them to play at your wedding or corporate function for 400+ guests, they may not know it, but they will most likely require the use of additional sound equipment and an experienced sound tech and possibly a lighting rig to really set the show off. Simply put the band leader in touch with us and we will sort out what extra gear they need and send you a quote.


Q: Can the PA system you are supplying for the band also be used for speeches from a lectern and sound from our Powerpoint presentation?

A: Yes it can; let us know beforehand so we can keep a couple of channels free on the mixing desk for the MC and AV sound.


Q: Do you hire cordless lapel (lavalier) microphones?

A: Yes we do have them available for hire, they are perfect for Streaming / Recording applications but can be difficult to get a good result in a live performance environment due to their omnidirectional pick-up pattern. For live cooking demonstrations we would recommend the black Shure or Sennheiser cardioid headset (Madonna) microphones. For live theater we would recommend the skin-tone Sennheiser headsets, yes these are still omnidirectional but the mic capsule is located much closer to the performers mouth, so they are less prone to feedback if setup correctly.


Q: Are lectern microphones easy to setup and use in a live sound situation?

A: Setting up a lectern mic to provide subtle reinforcement of the announcers voice is a reasonably straight forward process, however if you are expecting the same sort of volume that you would get from a handheld microphone and need to cut through the noise of a big crowd the task does get more complicated. The lectern mic capsule may be 15-30cm from the announcers mouth so the increased gain will pickup more hall noise than a handheld mic. You try to increase the gain more and you will get feedback. Your mixing desk will need to include an adjustable HPF and a good parametric EQ on the lectern channel only (not the FOH system EQ) to enable the problematic feedback frequencies to be detected and suppressed. Before audience arrival you will need to temporarily boost and sweep the parametric to find the source of the worst offender and make a maximum gain, high-Q cut on the first frequency, 2/3 cut on the next freq and 1/3 cut on the next freq if you have that many EQ's available. Throughout this process you will need an assistant occasionally talking into the mic to enable you to keep a check on the quality of the amplified voice. An added complication is that the announcer may move closer and farther away from the mic during his speech so you will need to use some compression/limiting to try to average out the level - not too much compression or you will make the system more susceptible to feedback.


Q: Are choir microphones easy to setup and use in a live sound situation?

A: Short answer NO they are not! Positioning and aiming the mics to get an even pickup of the members of your group can be the first challenge (think very tall stands or suspension from above). Not using any more mics than is absolutely necessary is the next - if too many mics are placed too close together you will get a phasing effect in the mixed sound that will make the group sound terrible and the system will be very susceptible to feedback - there is a 3:1 rule, eg. if one mic is 1m distance from the nearest performer then you have to space the next mic at least 3m from the first. Choir mic capsules can be a metre or so from your performers, so the high preamp gain necessary will pickup a lot of hall noise, so the EQ requirements and procedure will be the same but more demanding than the previous lectern mic example. Because of the high system gain it is not advisable to use any compression on choir mics. You just need to find the feedback point on the channel faders beforehand and work within this limit during the performance. Ed. If your choir consists of 10 people or less you will get a much better result using individual handheld microphones.


Q: How do I install Festoon Lights?

A: Festoon lighting can be dangerous if not installed correctly. We suggest you download this guide available here: How_to_Install_Festoon_Lights.pdf


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