Where's the best and worst place to sit at a rock concert in terms of audio quality?

Barricade_28
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Join date: Aug 2010
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#1
I love grabbing a front row GA spot on the rails at my favorite rock band's concerts because it's amazing to be so close to the artists, but I have to say the audio quality experience at the front is absolute shit. It's way too loud to really hear anything and everything is so muffled, you usually you can't make out what a lead guitarist is playing or the vocalist is singing, the sound of the whole band will be drowned out by the monitors/amps of the member you're sitting closest to, and if you're near a bass amp it will pound your chest all night (which is fun, but you can't really hear anyone else over it).

I find that some the worst seats in the house are usually the best for actually hearing the music because it isn't as loud and everything mixes together well. I've heard that sitting in the middle of a venue near the soundboard-mixer guy is the best experience sonically since all instruments are balanced by him in sound-check.

Opinions?
Dirge Humani
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#4
It depends entirely on the dimensions of wherever the concert is.
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FoolOnThePlanet
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#5
I usually grab front row when it's GA simply because I like to come away with picks or drumsticks or setlists or what have you....one time my GF felt sick though so we had to leave and when we came back there was no getting back front, so we were in back, and I gotta say it was better audio quality.

I feel like middle would be best....too close and you have view but bad sound, too far and you have good sound but no view...
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#6
at eye level with the band (bout 6 rows) and right about in the middle, because thats where the sound guy is.

worst..... well, anywhere else
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#7
I dunno, I was right next to the sound guy for the Chili Peppers concert and the guitar and bass didn't always come through clearly. I feel like nowhere is a good place for sound quality live, haha. I mean it was a great show, but its always going to be less clear live, not that that makes it bad.
willT08
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#8
Just don't go to live shows expecting the sound to be any good. It's not going to be. Especially at bigger venues where it just gets absolutely horrible.
RetroGunslinger
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#9
Wherever you can hear everyone the clearest and most evenly, which is usually facing the middle of the stage as you are usually equal distance form the pa speakers. Although it depends greatly on the venues shape and acoustics, you basically have to find out for yourself. At most gigs the middle of the floor is best though.
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Enix165
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#10
Best:Right next to whatever the kick drum and bass are mic'd up to.
Worst:Behind the drum throne.

IIIIIN MY HUMBLE OPINION.
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Pagan_Poetry
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#11
Quote by Enix165
Best:Right next to whatever the kick drum and bass are mic'd up to.
Worst:Behind the drum throne.

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sandyman323
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Join date: Apr 2009
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#12
Right next to the guy who's job it is to make it sound good.

If it doesn't sound good there why would it sound good anywhere else?
leony03
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#13
I find that the middle is the best because thats generally where the sound guys desk is. I saw Sabaton on friday and I stood about 7 feet to the right of the stage and about 10 feet back in a small/medium venue and couldnt hear the guitars at all. At one point, I had to wait until the vocals came in to tell what song it was even though it was one of my favourite lol.

When I saw Nightwish on Monday, we were in front of the desk and the sound was perfect. Possibly some of the best sound I have heard at a gig.
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Arby911
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#14
Concert and Audio Quality are mutually exclusive...

Live sound is awesome, but it will never even come close to being 'quality' audio...
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rickyvanh
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#15
There was a short lived show on a few years back that was kind of a hard rock/mythbusters type of show.They tested this topic on that show.Everybody that said right in the middle was correct.I forget how they determined this,but that was the outcome.
Jmoarguitar
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#17
indoor shows probably middle not too far back. I had my ear drums ass raped at the latest Black Label Show it was so damn loud, but the worst for that was Slayer, i left the front to go in the mosh and save my ear drums! I find the best sound is at big outdoor venues, the best quality wise i've ever seen was ACDC outdoors.
leony03
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Join date: Jan 2006
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#18
Quote by Jmoarguitar
indoor shows probably middle not too far back. I had my ear drums ass raped at the latest Black Label Show it was so damn loud, but the worst for that was Slayer, i left the front to go in the mosh and save my ear drums! I find the best sound is at big outdoor venues, the best quality wise i've ever seen was ACDC outdoors.


Yeah Black Label Society are f***ing loud live its insane.
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vIsIbleNoIsE
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#19
i just tried earplugs yesterday at a metal concert and it was definitely more enjoyable. easier to tell which instrument is which. and they were really cheap 3M earplugs too.

i also like being in the middle, but i've only been to smaller venues.
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reincarnator
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#20
Best would be in the path of both speakers at equal distance from both.

Worst would be off to the sides of the above position. Yay phasing
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#21
I was right at the very back near the middle at a huge venue when seeing Maiden (blasphemous, I know, but it was either a back seat or not seeing them at all :P) And I could hear them surprisingly well. The view wasn't too shabby either, so that was a good experience.
Kueller917
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#22
As mentioned before, the soundbooth will provide the best sound quality. If the venue isn't very well made for acoustics, the worst spots will be wherever strong dead spots are.
Guodlca
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#23
I would agree with the closest to the middle and the audio-mixing guy.
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Metallicuh
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#24
Middle = mosh pits and crowd surfing
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TheChaz
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#25
Right where the sound guy is. There's a reason he's there.
Xomar
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#26
If you're at a concert to get the best possible sound you're wasting your time- go listen to a recording of the band. Then again, I only ever go to metal concerts so I'm not there just for the music and have come to realize that I'm never going to get great audio quality at any venue.
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IYanoplathizoI
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#27
At the front with musicians grade ear protectors that wont come out.

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