Hello and welcome to the second (warning: more geeky than the first one!) episode of What we play! This week we’re gonna look at our newest addition to our PA system – the Behringer XR18 mixing console.

For some time (more accurately, for the whole existence of the band) we’ve been using a Behringer Xenyx 1832 mixer. It sounded good, but it had one simple issue. There was only limited monitoring possible. And we tell you, trying to clearly hear a singer from a PA system next to the drums when your drummer hits it like crazy (he plays awesomely though) gets a little tricky. So we’ve decided, that we need to upgrade our mixer and create a monitoring system for the band.

The idea is to do it as professionally as possible, because it can (and will) make our lives on the stage a lot easier. Imagine coming to the venue, bringing a rack with a digital mixer and 5 individual monitor outputs (either for floor wedges or in-ears), plugging in, making some minor tweaks and we’re ready for the show! And imagine coming to the rehearsal studio to practice and having the option to hear ourselves clearly and adjust the levels of our bandmates to our specific taste? That, friends, is a dream of many bands.

In The Only, we like making dreams true. So we bought a new mixer, installed it in this rack and are slowly adding more components and building the ultimate touring rig. Hopefully the tour comes soon as well!

XR18 mixing console by Behringer is a fully featured, 16 input digital mixer loaded with Midas preamps. Its fully controllable with an iPad app allowing storing settings and even direct recording to the app. It has 6 individually controllable aux / monitor outputs which we’re using for monitoring. Using the app, we can essentially create 7 different mixes. One is the Main Out, which goes to the PA at the venue, that’s what the audience hears. And then there are those 6 aux outputs. With a single click in the app, you can assign those outputs to be personal monitoring outputs for every one of us. Everyone then mixes and saves his own monitor mix.

Currently we are using studio headphones at our rehearsals with the Behringer PowerPlay headphone amplifier. But we’re planning to invest in wireless in-ear monitoring systems for better comfort while playing live. And we still need to get our live mix right. Luckily, our friend, who also happens to be a sound engineer (who also took great care of our sound at our recent show in Flame Music Bar, thank you!) promised that he’s gonna help us with that, so we’re looking forward to working with him again.

So, that’s it for this episode, we hope that we’re gonna write about how we mixed our live sound with our friend soon and that we’re gonna use this system live soon. And we also hope that you’re looking forward to next week to the next episode of What we play! Till next time!

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