As musicians ourselves out performing several times per week we understand as much as anyone the importance of keeping volume levels down. There is nothing more unprofessional than a band who drives the audience away due to excessive volume levels & nothing more uncomfortable as a musician than being subject to excessive volume every night.
As a result of this we have worked long and hard over several years to create a set up which allows us to get a great sound without being to loud ensuring all ages of audience can hear us properly, enjoy us, & have a dance without being knocked for six by the volume.
A really big change is happening within entertainment and has been slowly establishing itself over the last few years, noise limiters are being installed into more and more venues. For anyone who doesn’t know what a noise limiter is, its simply a device which measures volume in decibels (DB), different noise limiters work in different ways but essentially they are in the venue to limit excessive volume levels. A noise limiter will be enforced either by the local council or the venue management & each noise limiter can be set to a cut of limit. The effect of a noise limiter can be anything from the duty manager telling the band its to loud & to play quieter through to a cut of switch cutting power to the stage.
So whats the problem? Well, it all depends upon what DB level the noise limiter is set at. A reasonably set DB level shouldn’t cause any problems at all but too often the venue has set a limiter at a level impossible for a band to perform in. As you can imagine, this only causes a lot of stress for everyone on the night, especially if it results in power being cut. After a bit of research we have put together a simple DB chart to give you comparisons of everyday objects / settings and the DB level omitted.
Click to enlarge diagram
How can we help? The truth is we can only advise you on the best equipped act for your venue. Often if the venue has a noise limiter set at a level below 95DB we would advise a DJ or an acoustic based act. All ‘Taste The Music’ bands use In Ear Monitors (IEMs), this basically means each musician has a set of headphones which they can control to adjust the volume of themselves & each instrument on stage. This eliminates the need for the more common floor monitor speaker & reduces the powered speakers in the room significantly resulting in lower volume & a better overall sound (No feedback etc). Although this really helps it still doesn’t fully drop the volume below the 95BD mark.
For any advice or further help with your venue or if you want a list of recommended venues in your area please don’t hesitate to get in touch any time, we are always more than happy to help.
Taste The Music LTD