Step by step guide to setting up a
Gather all the equipment you need to set up the sound
desk. This will include the following:
• The sound desk itself
• Sound source
• XLR cable
• Kettle lead
• Phono lead
• Figure 8 lead
Plug everything into the mains.
The sound source (in this case a CD player) using a figure
of 8 lead and the speakers and sound desk using a kettle
lead. Turn the speakers off so that they don’t get damaged
when the sound desk is turned on. If you leave them on,
the speakers will ‘pop’ and damage
because of the sound coming through.
Connect the sound desk to the speakers using the
XLR cable from the main output of the desk to the
inputs of the speakers. The left output of the desk
goes to the left speaker and the right output goes
to the right speaker.
Connect the sound source (CD player) to the desk using
the phono lead. A phono lead is plugged into the CD player
and a quarter-inch jack plugs into the desk. Plug them into
the channels of the desk. The input on a desk can vary
depending on your sound source, for example a CD player
uses a line input but a microphone would use an XLR input.
Next, turn on the sound desk, sound source and
speakers. Press play on the sound source. The
desk is turned on before anything else to avoid the
speakers popping. Also make sure the volume on
the speakers in turned right down to avoid this.
On the desk, press PFL and turn the gain up so that the
lights on the peak meter turn orange, not any higher. If the
lights are red the sound is clipped, whereas when the lights
are orange, enough room is left for more sound to come
through the desk without being clipped.
PFL (pre fade listen)
As the speakers I am using are stereo and I’m
using 2 channels for the speakers, I will pan the
left speaker all the way to the left and the right
speaker all the way to the right. This makes the
sound clear and come from both speakers.
Switch both channels ‘ON’ and set the master
volume fader to 0DB to give the sound the ability
to become louder at any point.
fader at 0DB
Because the speakers are active they have
volume switches on them. Turn them to at least 12
o’clock so that there is no interference coming
through the speakers. Also adjust the faders on
the desk to appropriate levels.
Finally, now that there is sound coming through
the speakers you can adjust the EQ to suit the
sound. For example you could adjust it so that the
sound doesn’t come out tinny.