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Live Sound/Audio pros - Using a remote Zoom presenter as part of a live event with simultaneous back-and-forth audio
Posted by: clay
Date: September 24, 2021 12:27PM
There is:

  • An auditorium with PA system and projector/screen
  • A person on Zoom presenting something to be heard/seen in the auditorium
  • The same person on zoom wants to hear some audience sound or person talking into a mic from the auditorium

How would one achieve this setup without introducing feedback in the auditorium?

The audio mixer is setup such that the sound coming from zoom is not sent back to Zoom. But if a mic in the room is turned on (eg person on stage wants to talk to the Zoom person), that audio would be sent back to Zoom, but also out of the auditorium speakers. Feedback loop, correct?

Is there a way (without manually muting and unmuting various feeds to enable this switching back and forth) to allow for simultaneous back and forth audio to work in this scenario? It feels like there is probably a way to do it, but I keep coming back to the only way I know how to do this, and it either requires the muting/unmuting channels quickly to let each side hear the other (not simultaneously), or you get feedback if you basically leave the channels open (zoom into room, and room sound back into zoom).

What am I missing?
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Re: Live Sound/Audio pros - Using a remote Zoom presenter as part of a live event with simultaneous back-and-forth audio
Posted by: Bixby
Date: September 24, 2021 02:09PM
Have the person on zoom make sure to use headphones, just to optimize quality there. And make sure to use a dynamic cardioid mic (you probably are, like a SM58) in the auditorium, and make sure it's not too close to the PA speakers and they are in the null of the mic.

The zoom person will hear the mic'd person over headphones, and only transmit what they're saying.

In the auditorium, the mic'd feed will go to zoom and PA. Like I say, keep the mic away from the speakers. Ideally you might be able to use the mixer to EQ out any trouble spots.

The person on zoom will probably still hear themselves back (delayed) a bit, which will possibly be a little annoying, but just keep the volume down in the house to minimize. Should be workable, unless you expect a lot of back and forth. They could just take their headphones off while they're presenting, and only put on when there's expected back and forth.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/24/2021 02:40PM by Bixby.
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Re: Live Sound/Audio pros - Using a remote Zoom presenter as part of a live event with simultaneous back-and-forth audio
Posted by: clay
Date: September 24, 2021 02:46PM
thanks, Bixby. Good suggestions. I think I'm doing most of that already. This just feels like one of those situations where "it should just work". I mean, two people can be on a zoom call in front of their laptops with no headphones and they don't just have a massive feedback loop.

I realize changing one of those computers to an auditorium with speakers changes that equation a bit. It just intuitively feels like "why doesn't this work the same way it does with a basic computer-to-computer call?".
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Re: Live Sound/Audio pros - Using a remote Zoom presenter as part of a live event with simultaneous back-and-forth audio
Posted by: Bixby
Date: September 24, 2021 02:53PM
The main difference between computer to computer and computer to amplified auditorium is the computers don't amplify the local speaker back as you've pointed out, hence the need for special measures. If your mixer is digital and has a gate on it, you could also use that to clean it up.
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