SSE HIRE is an integral part of the history of festivals in the UK. Throughout four decades we have been there with innovations and the development of best practices, as festivals have grown more sophisticated and popular.
L-Acoustics K1 Configured For Delay
Mix Position, Metallica at Download
We developed the technique of 'flip-flop' for front of house mixing desks, enabling rapid change-overs of bands, preparing the next acts mix while the current act is playing live.
Dual Sites, Multiple Stages
When the V Festival pioneered the concept of running two sites simultaneously, with all acts playing to the two audiences across the weekend, SSE Hire provided duplicate rigs, so the main stage at both sites have the same configuration, with the same facilities at front of house.
The two-site concept was soon adopted by the Reading Festival and Leeds festival, while SSE also supplies multiple stages at the likes of the Global Gathering.
Line Arrays, Quality Inside, Quiet Outside
Advances in line array speaker systems have changed the quality and character of sound on festivals sites. SSE HIRE uses a range of systems such as the advanced L-Acoustics K1 system, with predictive plotting, meaning that the audience hears the acts at maximum level, while spillage of audio is kept to a minimum.
The move to the digital domain has taken a while to be adopted fully at festivals, because of the number and range of bands and engineers. SSE HIRE now uses recognised digital mixing desks for most festivals, enabling band engineers to store their settings on a USB stick and reducing the uncertainties of prep and change-overs. In place of regular analogue multicores carrying individual mic signals from the stage to FOH, SSE now regularly uses a digital infrastructure - typically a Dante network with a fibre optic link between FOH and the stage.
The popularity of festivals means that virtually every summer weekend SSE HIRE is operating at multiple sites across the country, serving folk, jazz, comedy and classical concerts as well as pop and rock.