Yes, you got that great Karaoke machine. You have tested it and sounds great. The kids enjoy the lyrics that show up and you enjoy the sound quality. You are already planning the next party with friends and family. On D-day, the evening is buzzing with excitement – there are so many people. It takes about an hour before everyone is in. By this time, the guests are comfortable and snacking. The conversations have picked up and the din is making you all excited for the cultural program of the day. You get attention of the guests and invite the first enthusiastic singer on stage. Everything gets going and you are puzzled when the singer starts to move towards the machine. Soon the music is running but there is no singing. She is still trying to hear the sounds in the midst of all the din. She however manages to sing the song through and is done. You hear a muted applause. As she walks away from the stage and towards you, you can hear her mutter ‘I could barely hear the music’. This isn’t uncommon. The home entertainment systems that you get can do a great job producing the sound in a quiet home setting. However when you have lots of people and they are talking, the sounds can easily muffle the music. There are a few things you can do here.
1) Ask the audience to keep the noise level down. If possible, explain succinctly that the ‘artists’ have spent a lot of time and we should try to listen to them.
2) Get a portable PA system (Public Announcement system). These have larger wattage/output that is meant to rise above the crowd noise.
3) Ask the shop salesman what sort of atmosphere is the system meant for – such as a bar, meeting room, etc. This will give you an idea if it is a good fit.
4) Get the system and try it out at home for your first party! There is no shame in returning it if it doesn’t meet the needs. You can tell the salesman you need to test it for it to be a keeper.
5) An easier solution is to make sure that the system can take in a head-phone that the singer can wear. This will muffle the ambient noise and help the singer focus on the tracks better. No reason why, even in a professional setting, the singer ALWAYS has a head phone on himself or herself. This is a must.