There’s all kinds of strategies out there for improving your live stream mix. Most require you to use a different mixer for your live stream and set up a control room. This works well, but it’s not a viable solution for a lot of churches.
How do the rest of us provide a live stream mix with excellence?
Well, I have a simple strategy for you. No new equipment needed. No extra volunteers needed. All you need is the simple strategy I am about to give you.
When it comes to a simple live stream mixing strategy, there’s a little bit of setup you have to do on your mixer. But once you get everything set up, your workflow every Sunday is going to be really simple.
Seriously, once you implement this strategy, you’ll probably end up spending less than a minute on your live stream mix each week and it is going to sound great.
So, let’s get it all set up.
First up, you’ll need a pair of bus or aux mixes to use for the live stream mix. The reason you need two instead of one is so you can have a stereo mix. Trust me, it sounds way better than a mono mix.
You’ll need to link the two buses into a stereo mix. How you do this depends on your mixer, but here’s how you do it on the X32:
Next, you’ll need to go through each channel and make sure the tap point is set correctly. The tap point is simply the setting that lets you determine at what point in the signal chain to send that channel to the bus.
In this case, we are only going to use two of the options, pre-fader and post-fader.
Most of your channels will be set to post-fader, which allows your live stream mix to mimic what is going on in the room. In other words, when you adjust the volume in the room for one of your vocals, it will also adjust the volume in the live stream mix.
For now, go ahead and set everything to post-fader and we can go back and change the few exceptions afterwards. Here’s how you do it on the X32:
This will assign all channels for that bus to Post Fader.
Now, there are three different things that work better with the pre-fader configuration. The most important is your pastor’s mic.
This makes sure that your pastor is always at full volume in the live stream mix regardless of what is going on in the room.
The other two things to set to pre-fader are your ambient mics, if you have them, and also the inputs you use for pre-service music and any videos you might play during the service.
Let me show you how to set these three channels to pre-fader:
Next, do the same thing for your ambient mics and your pre-service music feed.
Once everything is configured, you simply need to create a starting point for your live stream mix. The easiest way to do this is to use the “sends on fader” control.
In the room, you generally mix vocals quite a bit louder than everything else to make sure everyone hears them. When listening online, the vocals come across as too loud because most computer and TV speakers are tuned to make vocals sound louder anyway.
So, bringing vocals down to -5dB in the live steam bus will help them blend better online.
Keep in mind, you want all your vocals to be at the same level in the live stream bus.
We have these set to post fader, so the room mix will take care of making sure the background vocals are in the background and the lead vocal is in the front. You don’t need to do this in the live stream busses.
And now you are all set up and ready to go. But remember, this is just a starting point for your mix. You’ll need to make adjustments to the bus mix once you actually have the band playing.
Simply put on a pair of headphones, solo your live stream bus mix, and use the sends on fader control to fine tune your live stream mix.
And that’s it. Now all you have to do is take a minute each Sunday to check your live stream mix, make minor adjustments, and you’re good to go.
Keep in mind, the live stream mix is a reflection of what’s going on in your auditorium, so you’ll want to make sure your room mix is the best it can be.
That’s what Church Sound Made Simple is all about. Get access now by visiting churchsoundmadesimple.com.
I'd like to see this in regards to the new PreSonus 32xs.
Hey Kevin - I have not yet looked into the 32xs. Not sure we will be able to create a video specific to that mixer, but I will definitely take a look!
When i solo the live stream bus it sojnds good. When I listen on YouTube it sounds like garbage.
Sorry, I meant to start a new conversation not reply to an existing one.
We are using an aux send with another person mixing using X32 edit. We have the aux set up prefader. Will using 2 linked aux sends boost the volume level for Live stream?
We have a vocalist who speaks between songs and drops out of the mix.
Hey John - Using two linked aux sends will not make the stream louder, but it will make it better. To fix your vocalist issue, make sure you have compression dialed in on the vocal mics. Here's a post on that: https://collaborateworship.com/set-compressor-vocals/
We are currently using a matrix to send to live stream, bus 1 matrixed with the LR Mains. Can you do the same thing you suggest here by adjusting the sends on faders for bus 1 into the matix?
You do not have the same capabilities with a Matrix as you do a Bus. I recommend abandoning the Matrix in favor of the setup outlined in the video. You'll get much better results.
Hey Kade thanks for the video I would like to know if there is a way to have some effects to those stereo Bus? Thanks for your answer
Yes - Here's a video on how to do it: https://collaborateworship.com/reverb-live-stream/
After I create the 2 bus sends do you think it's better to 1) use the X32 USB output to send audio to my Mac running OBS or 2) use the 2 xlrs to send the audio to my ATEM Mini Pro which then plugs into my Mac?
Hey Greg - I'd use the X32's USB output. I've not used the ATEM Mini Pro, but I did look it up and all it has is two unbalanced audio inputs. This can work okay if the cable is running a short distance, but you might have problems with interference due to it being unbalanced. You will not have those issues with the X32's USB output.
Thank you thank you thank you!! This was the perfect solution for our sound guy... no more bouncing back and forth between mixes to get them dialed in separately. Tested it tonight at practice and it was great. The final piece to our puzzle is how do we get the effects into the stream mix for vocals and drums etc. If you can help us do that it would be awesome. Using the x32 by the way. Thanks again for this.
Hey Allen - I have a video coming out specifically on how to send FX to the live stream busses. In the meantime, press "Sends on Fader" and select your live stream bus. Then navigate to the FX Returns bank of faders and turn those up to about -10dB.
I’m running a really old Roland digital mixer. We used to control our livestream sound through a separate P16 monitor unit, but that made the camera guy have to run sound for the livestream, too. I love this simple setup, but I don’t have the USB audio option. How can I get the signal from the stereo aux buses into the computer running the livestream? A channel level converter?
Hey Nathanael - You just need an audio interface with two inputs. Then you can come out of the board using two XLR cables into the audio interface. The audio interface will connect to your computer via USB. My favorite interface is the Scarlet 2i2: https://collabwrshp.com/2K7hxr5
You're the best, man! That's what I'll do. Last question: we have a delay in the vocals and I'm worried they won't match up to the camera. Have you ever encountered this, and if so, what has been your fix?
What software are you using to run your livestream? There should be the ability within that software to line up your audio and video by delaying the audio to match.
We are running Vmix, but the problem is that it is only the vocal (wireless) mics that are delayed; the tracks (from prime track rig) come through without delay. I can’t adjust only the mics within Vmix without adjusting the whole mix. I’m at a loss, because everything else worked so easily!!
That's strange that only one mic would be delayed... I'm at a loss. Not sure what would cause that.
What about vocal fx? We’re following your setup, but we have no control of effects. How do we fix that?
Hey Luc - Here's a video on getting reverb to your live stream mix: https://collaborateworship.com/reverb-live-stream/
We must not have our fx set up correctly. I tried to follow those instructions and nothing match.
Using X32, does there need to be an EQ for the Livestream Buses created?
Hey Marques - Here's my EQ tips for the live stream buses: https://collaborateworship.com/live-stream-dull/
To add effects to my livestream, it looks like the only options of where to send effects is to a matrix, but you've mentioned that a Matrix shouldn't be used. We're using the Behringer X32. Our livestream is on bus 11/12, but there are no effects in our stream, so it's sounding off.
Hey Luc - You can send your FX Returns to the live stream bus. Here's how:
Tap SENDS ON FADER and select Bus 11. Then, navigate to your FX Returns and turn the fader up to about -10dB. Then adjust to the right amount of effects for your mix.
We are considering changing our old mixing desk for the X32 Compact but currently run our livestream from our Aux 1 channel to an IPad as we’re using Switcher Studio. How do you set up each channel to send to the Aux 1 output using a bus?
I’m completely new to digital desks & using busses.
Hey Sandra. On a digital mixer, a bus is the same as an aux on an analog mixer (I know, confusing). You can then route that bus mix to an aux output.
So, create your live stream mix using a bus. Then, on the routing screen, set the aux output to that bus.