It may be his swansong tour, but Elton John is still managing to break new ground at his Farewell Yellow Brick Road shows by giving fans the chance to create their own live audio mixes in real time. This is thanks to the use of a new technology known as Peex rX.
For the user, this takes the form of a wearable device that’s worn around the neck and comes with its own set of earphones. Sound from the main mixing desk is beamed to said device via radio transmitters, and you can use a companion 5-channel mixing app on your phone to set levels for different sonic elements of the performance (vocals, guitar, keyboards, bass and drums, for example).
The theory is that the system enables you to get great sound wherever you happen to be sitting or standing. The earphones don’t have any isolation or noise cancelling features, so you should still be able to take in the ‘live’ atmosphere.
If Elton John fans are happy with Peex, you can expect it to be picked up by other artists. We can certainly see its potential when used in cavernous arenas, where it’s difficult to achieve a good sound balance for the entire audience. It may be less useful in smaller venues, where getting a good mix for everyone should be easier, but time will tell.
Find out more on the Peex website.