The Radial SW8 is an 8 channel auto-switcher that allows you to set up a redundant backup system by automatically switching between two sources such as a pair of digital recorders, computers or network systems.
Designed primarily for live concerts and stage shows where backing tracks are used for orchestration, vocals and sound effects, the SW8 employs an adjustable gate to detect a machine malfunction and automatically switch to a second backup machine to deliver a seamless performance. Switching can also be manually performed using a remote latching switch or via the front panel A~B switch. For larger systems, the SW8 is easily linked using a standard ¼" guitar type cable. This enables the unit to expand to 16, 24 or 32 channels with all systems switching simultaneously.
Housed in a heavy duty 14-gauge steel 19" enclosure, the Radial SW8 is equipped with choice of 25-pin D-sub or ¼" TRS connector input sets. A third D-Sub provides straight through balanced output while the front panel is equipped with XLR outputs. Inside, eight Eclipse ET-DB2 direct box transformers come factory assigned to the XLR outputs for easy patching from the stage to the mic splitter. The isolation transformers help eliminate hum and buzz caused by ground loops may be re-patched internally to the D-Subs if required.
The Radial SW8 eliminates embarrassing system malfunctions by providing an easy to implement and easy to use system that will ensure each and every show will go on!
The following are three common scenarios used today in live production. For obvious reasons, we have removed the names of the bands and technicians who provided this info as many artists like to keep their production secrets, well... secret! Each scenario might have a click track going on a separate out, usually only to the drummer, very rarely if ever, to the front of house. Sometimes alternate click tracks are sent, via the monitor desk, to individual band members that need to start at the top of a given song.
This is setup is most commonly employed in the club scene and for fly-in promotional TV and video tours. In these scenarios, everything is mixed to a single stereo or even a mono output to feed the PA system and broadcaster. Some bands have done this with great success but this takes a lot of hard work to get the balance just right.
Here, 16 backing tracks are mixed down into stereo subgroups. This is the most common form of backing tracks as the musicians are doing all of the main work and the playback machines are adding icing to the cake. In these systems, you'll see extra left and right drums, percussion & beats, keyboards and orchestration, guitars & backing vocals and often all of the vocal effects.
Everything is on backing tracks: drums, electronic beats, instruments, backing vocals, vocal effects and in some cases, even lead vocals. Here we are talking about the various pop bands that incorporate huge, over-the-top production. Every track is broken out to individual channels so the monitor engineer can send different players different mixes & the front of house mixer has total control.