Four Allen & Heath Qu-16 digital rackmount mixers were used for the recent New Zealand Folk Festival in Auckland. Running for 40 years, the event annually attracts a lineup of international touring artists.

“There are certain considerations when mixing folk bands; firstly there are many unusual instruments - including bouzoukis, dulcimers, 7 string acoustic guitars, harps, and accordions with built in mics, musicians unexpectedly come back on stage to perform with other bands, the crowd like a mix where you can hear a pin drop but at a “festival” level, and vocals must always be on top of the mix,” explains engineer, Davyd Hodge. “That’s why I need a dedicated surface area to manage this event.”

NZfolkfestivalPreviously, Hodge has used a 40-channel analogue GL2800 from Allen & Heath but opted to use the company’s new Qu-16 digital mixers arranged as sub mixers feeding a central main mixer for this year’s event. Hodge configured the Qu-16s so that the sub mixers fed into the Stereo inputs on the main Qu-16 console to mix the main PA LR while a forth console was used to provide the Centre fills and the SUBS through their own GEQ’s.

“This is the first large show I had used a digital console, and it went off without any brain fry!” comment Hodge. “The 4 Band PEQ and GEQ all worked great and the channel EQ worked brilliantly and I didn’t need channel Insert points!”