A portable sound-level meter helps you reduce the risk of audio distortion when recording or playing an amplified signal. If you regularly use an audio mixer without a built-in sound meter, connecting a handheld model can aid in audio adjustments before a live performance, or before committing that performance to a digital or analog recording. The meter hooks up to the mixer with a single audio cable, using a microphone input on the mixer. Add a second meter to a separate channel to measure the stereo signal balance between the two inputs on the mixer.
M/F Turn off the sound mixer by pushing the slide switch or pressing the power button on the unit.
M/F Line up the three pins inside the plug on one end of the XLR microphone cable with the holes in the jack on the sound meter and push the plug straight in. If using an RCA-type cable, push the single plug straight into the meter jack.
M/F Connect the other end of the cable to one of the "MIC" inputs on the mixer for an XLR connection or use one of the RCA jacks, such as a guitar input, for an RCA-type cable connection.
M/F Set the calibration switch on the sound level meter to either the 94 dB or 114dB position for either a 1/2-inch or 1-inch microphone, if measuring for a mic connection, or 124 dB for an instrument connection.
M/F Connect a second meter to a separate jack on the mixer, either XLR for a microphone or RCA for an instrument, to check the overall sound level and balance between the two signals.
M/F Adjust the volume controls on the mixer for the respective audio jacks to balance the separate channels so that one does not overwhelm the other.