Important tips for sound and light at your wedding
The weather might suggest otherwise, but wedding season is well and truly upon us. In a year when the number 13 is so prominent, you’d be forgiven for thinking that couples may decide to wait another year before planning their special day, but weddings appear to be as common a sight at this time of the year in 2013 as any other.
If you’re knee-deep in your own invitation designs and table layouts, we’d like to help ease you into the planning of the reception by focusing on two elements we’re somewhat familiar with: sound and light.
You need both, there’s no doubting that, but below are a couple of things you’d be forgiven for not having considered. They may sound a little mundane and tedious when pitched against the likes of dress shopping and first dance planning, but they are incredibly important if the night is to be a resounding success and one which people will remember for years to come.
1) Sound limiters: please don’t stop the music
A wedding party simply isn’t a party without speeches and music. Lots of music. Picking the right kit to project all this isn’t easy, although it is something we know a thing or two about at Precise. There is something, however, which can have a profound effect on the choice of PA.
Sound limiters. These, thankfully, are relatively rare, but are devices which can be installed in party venues with the sole aim of keeping noise at an acceptable level. Their presence normally indicates neighbours within proximity of the venue who might have been subjected to one late night of four-to-the-floor pumping dance music too many. Ask your venue if one exists and how strict it is. Limiters have a threshold which, once breached, shuts power off to the band or DJ. Some venues may turn it off if you can convince them you’re not bringing The Prodigy along to entertain your guests – it’s worth asking. If they won’t, providing your band and/or DJ are aware of its existence, they can play within the boundaries.
2) Lighting: no smoke without fire
Lighting can transform pretty much any space into something magical. It is the omnipresent feature at your wedding reception which people might not pay a huge amount of attention to, but which will very much be at the heart of the atmosphere they enjoy.
Lighting comes in many forms. LED uplighters can bathe expanses of walls and tables in any colour of your choosing and are becoming increasingly popular at events such as wedding receptions, as are the more impressive looking moving heads (something you’d usually see on The X Factor). A great way to enhance lighting effects is by using haze or smoke. Even the smallest amount will reveal the beams being projected, lending gravitas and a real sense of occasion. Not all venues will allow haze and smoke machines, however. Depending on the type of fire warning systems they have in place, these harmless devices could unintentionally set off the alarm.
As with sound limiters, knowing of their presence prior to the event is essential for anyone involved in the technical side of the evening. If a venue will not allow smoke or haze machines, it’ll avoid any potentially uncomfortable situations or, worse still, a show stopping evacuation if you know beforehand.