Allen&Heath dLive shines for SummAIR

AllenHeath SummAIR2

Billed as Switzerland’s first open-air streaming festival, SummAIR featured a tight programme of live bands mixed on an advanced Allen & Heath dLive setup.

SummAIR was held on June 18th in the town of Hochdorf, where a small, socially distanced audience was joined by an online crowd to enjoy five performances by prominent home-grown artists, including Veronica Fusaro, ZiBBZ and Marc Amacher.

With five bands performing on a single stage and just a few minutes for each changeover, the key challenge for Simon Münger from MSL Eventtechnik GmbH was to provide a high quality, unbroken livestream mix throughout the evening. Reinforcing his own Allen & Heath inventory with a pair of dLive systems hired in through the dLive Rental Network, Simon devised an integrated mixing system spanning FOH, monitors, livestream and mastering matrix duties.

Simon mixed monitors from an S5000 Surface and DM48 MixRack, setting the gain structure for the whole system. Another S5000 and DM48 pairing at FOH was supplemented by an eight fader IP8 remote controller, allowing FOH engineer, Tim Werner to access presenter channels and master levels when guest engineers were mixing on the main Surface. Oliver Deiss managed the livestream mix, adding final compression and level adjustments from a third S5000, together with a CDM32 MixRack. Oliver Herzog took care of the mastering matrix using a 19” C1500 Surface and CDM32, adding ambient mics and handling transitions between presenters, video playback and the live mix. The FOH and monitor mixers were connected over gigaACE, with Waves3 cards allowing sharing of individual channels between the monitor and livestream setups.

Four portable DX168 I/O expanders were deployed on drum risers to facilitate the rapid changeovers between artists, allowing the crew to feed all the mixers by plugging in a single Cat cable. A fifth DX168 was used for additional I/O between the livestream mix and the mastering matrix.

Latency was another big consideration, as Simon explains, “The artists were performing in front of a videowall, so there was no room for unwanted delay on the audio and video signals. The speed of the dLive system was brilliant. Being able to send all 128 channels without unnecessary AD/DA conversion and latency of under 0.7ms from input to output was a great benefit. The routing is fantastic; it doesn’t matter how many groups you’re using, it doesn’t add any latency.”

Thanks to careful planning and an excellent crew on the ground, SummAIR 2020 went without a hitch, as Simon confirms, “I am proud of the way the whole crew pulled together to overcome all the challenges. At every dLive position, our focus was always to have the best possible livestream, and I’m happy we achieved that.”