Instruments, Effects, and Switchers – Oh My!

New York based band Vox Cadre reveals their video secrets – from the software they use for full multi-camera control to the instruments/equipment that help channel their creative vision.

Okay, so it’s one thing to have a great aesthetic, but what about the audio for your videos/live streams?

Luckily, we recently came across Vox Cadre, a trio of 3 tech savvy musicians, and they had both! Their videos had a cool retro vibe and their audio levels were dialed in across the board even while working with so many different instruments, cameras, and other equipment pieces.

As you can imagine, we had to pick their brains!

Here’s what they shared:

Video switcher for live-streams

Facebook and YouTube

Stream-wise, we’re using Livestream Studio as our switcher in conjunction with several Mevo cameras that are positioned strategically around the room. We’ve had some reliability issues with these cameras, however, so we’re switching over to a hardwired setup by way of a Zoom Q2n-4k hooked into a BlackMagic UltraStudio Mini Recorder.

Instagram and Periscope

To broadcast on Instagram, there are several services out there that allow one to stream RTMP video directly to Instagram Live. Depending upon the current state of the Internet, we’ve used both Yellow Duck and Promovgram to handle this. We will often simulcast to Periscope as well, as Periscope has a direct integration with Livestream Studio and can consume higher-fidelity audio.

Behind the curtain

As a bunch of gear nuts, we love to talk about our setup. Our studio is comprised of a collection of instruments that we’ve been collecting, A&E Hoarders-style, over the past 15-20 years. The cornerstone piece is a vintage 1979 Yamaha CP-70 Electric Grand piano that we purchased from an old Atari VGM composer; thing’s moved across the country at least 4 times at this point and still somehow stays in tune.

Synth-wise, we have a Minimoog Model D 2016 reissue, a Moog One, SCI Prophet 6, Behringer VC340 vocoder and, as of last week, one of those new Korg ARP 2600 reissues (thing is a dang beast). Given the sheer amount of beep boopin’ that goes on in this small room, our downstairs neighbors have been almost unnaturally accommodating and we count ourselves quite fortunate for it.

Vox Cadre’s instrument set up starting from the left and moving clockwise– pictured is the Minimoog Model D, CP-70 Electric Grand with Prophet 6 on top, followed by the Behringer VC430, Fender Fat Strat, Moog One and pedalboard.

Strings-wise, we’ve got an American Fender Fat Strat and P Bass alongside a Mexican Electric 12, a Taylor 6 string acoustic and a ’66 Twin Reverb. They all feed into a common bus which in turn plugs into a pedalboard with a SansAmp ParaDriver DI, Boss CE-2w chorus, Line 6 HX Effects, custom-built Earthquaker Disaster Transport and a Strymon BigSky.

Mic-wise, we use a Shure SM7B alongside an SM58 and SM57, all proper beltin’ mics.

A portion of the Vox Cadre set up (from left to right) – a Korg ARP 2600, iMac Pro with Neumann KH 120 monitors, an M-Audio Axiom 49 MIDI controller, Shure SM7B mic on a boom stand, desk from @masswoodworks, followed by the audio rig: one Apollo Twin on top followed by two Apollo x8ps in the rack alongside the Scarlett OctoPre.   

This big ol’ situation feeds into a UAD system comprised of 2 Apollo x8ps and a Twin alongside a Focusrite Scarlett OctoPre for some added inputs. That system in turn plugs into an iMac that’s running Ableton for DAW purposes. The master stereo mixdown from the UAD rig is fed into a Roland Octa-Capture, which is the primary interface that we use for streaming purposes. All of this gear sits on top of this awesome sapele desk that @masswoodworks built for us last year.

Vox Cadre’s live video entry for NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert series contest (2020).

More about Vox Cadre

Vox Cadre @voxcadre began one fateful week in the city of San Francisco. Three old friends, Andrew Ferry, Michael Melton and Steve Salevan, came together to combine some promising musical ideas. The plan: to cook up an EP, from zilch to finished, in less than 9 days. Four years and many iterations later, we’re still working on that EP, livestreaming our latest creations every Monday evening. Vox Cadre melds analog synthesizers, powerful vocal harmonies, atmospheric sound design, and driving dance beats into a stacked array of sonic power. If you enjoy the 1980s, weird noises, belting out anthems in the middle of the night and substantial amounts of reverb, you might just dig our music.

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