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7 Clever Gifts for the On-Location Recording Engineer

The On-Location Engineer is a cross between a live engineer and a recording engineer. He’s the guy that bands call when they want to record in their rehearsal studios or onstage.

So what on earth do you give to somebody with such a complicated job?


The Mixer

presonus studiolive mixerMy all-time favorite business model that I’ve never tried out all revolves around the Presonus StudioLive 16-Channel Audio Mixer.

You can hook it up to a P.A. to do a live gig but you can also record everything that goes into it straight to you computer.

That means you could technically record and mix a full band playing a concert and then upload their set to their website within hours of them finishing their set. How’s that for a fast turnaround?

The Portable Recorder

 can handle it all.

It’s got a built-in stereo microphone along with two extra mic inputs.

Technically, that’s enough to record a lot of things, from interviews, garage demos to string quartets.

Here’s a really cool video on how you can use the Zoom H4N to make any room, even the Italian Saint Mark’s square, your live room.

The Microphones

audix microphone package for drumsFor somebody on the go, a good microphone pack can be the on-location engineer’s best friend.

The  extremely versatile.

It has enough microphones to record a full drum-kit, but many of those mics, like the Audix i5, work wonders on electric guitars and rock vocals.

And it even comes with a stereo overhead pair that you can use for all your stereo microphone needs.

The Acoustic Treatment

be pretty unpredictable.

But if you have something portable like the Auralex ProMAX Stand-mounted Acoustic Treatment you can set up baffles anywhere to get the best room sound in any situation.

Somewhere to Put Stuff!

One thing about on-location recording is that you have to lug a bunch of stuff around. And to record a whole band at once you’re going to need a few microphone stands.

Ultimate Support JamStands has a bundle of mic stands that takes care of this problem. Not the most romantic gift of all time, but practical.


LiveSoundSurvival3D-COVER-300x262For the live, on-location engineer, improving their skills should be their first priority. All that gear can only go so far.

For live sound chops, my Live Sound Survival – Big Sounds Out of Small Systems eBook is a great place to start.

For recording strategies, check out….errr…Recording Strategies – Planning the Perfect Session.


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About me

About Björgvin Benediktsson

I’m Björgvin Benediktsson. I’m a musician, audio engineer and best-selling author. I help musicians and producers make a greater impact with their music by teaching them how to produce and engineer themselves. I’ve taught thousands of up and coming home studio producers such as yourself how to make an impact with their music through Audio Issues since 2011.

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