In Ear Wireless –vs- Stage Monitors
So what is the difference between In Ear Wireless Monitors and Stage Monitors and how do you set them up?
In a typical stage set up you have several musicians playing and they all want to hear themselves in order to give their best performance. If you play guitar and don’t have monitors then it will hard for you to hear what is going on once the drummer kicks in with his best Neil Peart impression. At least the guitarist has an amp on stage – what about the singer? Not a chance in hearing themselves over a drum set, guitar amp and bass amp. Hence the need for monitors.
Above is the very affordable Powerwerks PW15PM Powered Stage Monitor
For years floor monitors ruled the stage by both supplying a mix to the stage and giving the singer a place to do his best “Foot-on-the-Monitor” Rockstar pose. The way it works is that the mixing engineer sends different mixes to different monitors to help the musicians hear what their parts. Since mixers are limited in how many sends [different instrument mixes] they can send many bands use a simple 2 mix approach. One mix has more of the melody parts and is usually helpful for the singer, keyboardist, guitar player and another mix is sent that is more rhythm heavy to help the bass player and drummer lock down the groove. The proper mixes are sent to the monitors in front of each particular musician and away they go.
In Ear Wireless Systems
The Shure PSM300 is a popular In Ear Monitor System
Inevitably with floor monitors you increase the stage volume by blasting music back onto the stage. Some musicians have a hard time concentrating on their part hearing different mixes as they move around the stage. Others do not like the risk of feedback that occurs if floor monitors are turned up too loud. An In Ear Wireless Monitor System is perfect for these situations. They work in exactly the same way as floor monitors except that the mixes go right to the performers ears instead of to the floor monitors.
n Ear Wireless Systems contains 2 main parts: A Transmitter and a Receiver. The transmitter is where you connect your mixer and send it the sound. The transmitter sends the signal wirelessly to the receiver. The receiver is a small beltpack with In Ear headphones/earphones and this is how the musician hears the sound on stage.
This gives the musician the ability to perfectly adjust their mix as well as the volume level to give them what they need for their best performance.
So great – then wireless for everyone right? Well if it is in the budget – sure! For bands on a smaller budget the standard floor monitors will make the most financial sense. If you have a better budget or need quiet stage volume [like in a church] then wireless is the winner hands down. Either way you go - make sure the musicians have some sort of monitors unless you want a never ending volume war on stage to see who has the loudest amp!
If you need any help deciding on how to go forward with your setup contact us at 1-877-778-7845 and one of our Live Sound Professionals will help you get everything you need.