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D5 x 3: DiGiCo consoles out in force on Spice Girls tour

test 11 March 2008

WORLD: The recently concluded Spice Girls reunion tour made use of no fewer than three DiGiCo D5 consoles for a production that ran to around 109 inputs. Monitor engineer Matt Napier says that he opted to use two of the consoles (one for the backing band and for the Spice Girls themselves) because he “wanted to be able to approach the in-ear mixes for the girls in a different way to those for the musicians”, writes David Davies.

“The band all have a relatively conventional in-ear mix, with minimum EQ and compression,” Napier continued. “For the girls, on the other hand, I have approached it more like an FOH mix, with a more ‘glossy’, album-like feel, utilising EQ, compression and effects.”

Other D5 features praised by Napier included the console’s ergonomic layout and snapshot feature.

“I’m running about 32 snapshots for various songs, segues, etc, with both desks linked via MIDI. This enables me to utilise the scene change button on the D5 to step the entire systems through the show and it works very well,” he noted.

Napier made use of the D5’s onboard FX alongside an effects set-up based around Apple’s Logic 8 sequencing software, interfaced through a MOTU 896HD and connected to the D5 via ADAT light-pipe. The monitor set-up also included Ultimate ears UE7s with Sennheiser G2 IEMs for the Spice Girls and flown d&b C4 side-fills for the dancers.

A D5 was also deployed at FOH, where it was used in conjunction with a d&b audiotechnik J series rig by engineer Ray Furze and systems tech Sid Rogerson. The console’s MADI output enabled Furze to record a full multi-track mix of every show direct to a PC running Cubase.

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