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The Experience

The Fractured Pulse

What does EncelaPulse sound like with the met coming from multiple speakers?

Here is a clip of 8 lead-in clicks from a typical rehearsal rep with the Lafayette High School Band.

In this and the other video below, I was standing about midfield and at about the 30 yard line. The LHS Band is using a four-speaker array and the temperature was in the upper 80s.

First, the echo. One might think that the echo would be more cacophonous with four speakers pointing in the general direction of a concrete stadium and a metal softball field wall, which are visible in the video. But the echo in this rehearsal situation is about what it would be with the traditional and outdated one-speaker technique. In short, echo is usually not a problem.

But the pulse itself coming from multiple speakers; how does that sound? You will notice in the area of the field I am standing that all four speakers sound at almost the exact same time. At the rehearsal tower, the LHS Band’s sweet spot, the met pulses sound at exactly the same time, and so does the band, which is the entire point! For the front ensemble, the met pulses are almost perfectly synchronous. Hearing multiple pulses per beat becomes much more noticeable at larger distances from the rehearsal tower, particularly in the back corners of the field and close to any speaker.

Even with multiple pulses per beat, the students are able to lock into the first one they hear, which is the correct one. Any latent pulses, if heard, are easily ignored .

The Pedagogy

From the perspective of both the musicians and the staff, EncelaPulse is easy.

The musicians should be instructed to play with the first met pulse per beat they hear, then learn exactly when that met pulse happens in the drum major’s pattern. If they can precisely duplicate that timing when the metronome is off, their performance will arrive at the sweet spot with no phasing.

Easy, I say? Let me unpack that just a little.

The key here is EncelaPulse’s objectivity. What makes EncelaPulse easy, or at least easier than any other anti-phasing technique, is that the first pulse per beat is objectively correct. The guesswork on everyone’s part, musicians and staff alike, is not necessary.

Let’s also recognize that if the members don’t compensate for distance, an unphased performance is impossible. In other words, your musicians have to compensate anyway. They might as well use an accurate, distance-compensating metronome like EncelaPulse.

Let’s take a look at EncelaPulse in use with the LHS band. Notice where in the drum major’s pattern the heard met pulse occurs.

A rep with an EncelaPulse, four-speaker metronome. The battery percussion is just outside frame to the right.

The Conclusion

Teachers and students deserve tools and teaching techniques that provide an objectively correct metronome reference that compensates for the dawdling speed of sound and distances between musicians in significantly large and/or competitive programs.

With the right tools and instruction, students can learn to do this quickly and reliably.

EncelaPulse is the that right tool.

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