We’re configuring a setup for in-ear monitoring on stage for our 4-piece band. We’re going to get a mixer which will recieve instruments on the inputs and then send individual mixes to the band members via aux outs.

But we’re confused about the source of a signal. For guitars we can use DI outs on guitar processors. We also can send our playback and click tracks right to the monitoring mixer. But what about vocals and drums? Should we ask a sound guy to send us vocals and drums from FOH console to the stage and then to our mixer? If its’s the case, is it OK to use full drums mix in mono for the monitoring (for drummer and whoever else needs to hear the drums in their in-ears). I’d love to recieve all 12 drum channels and then mix them, but small stages are usually limited to 4-8 aux outs on the FOH console.

Or we should not bother FOH engineer and do it by ourselves somehow?

2 Answers 2


There are various ways to do this, but it all boils down to what kind of gigs you do, what gear you bring to a show and what gear is normally supplied or available. If you are able to bring your own mics, cables, stands, DIs etc., why not build a rack with a splitter and your IEM mixer? This is assuming that the IEM mixer you are going to get will be digital and rack mountable.

What I would do in such a situation, is to build a rack large enough to hold the IEM mixer and a splitter, plus any transmitters for the IEMs. If wireless mics are to be used, I'd mount the receivers for those there as well. With a bit of luck, the guitar processors might also fit into it for an even more compact setup.

From the rack I'd run a small snake for the drums with all inputs already labeled. This makes it easy for any of the four band members to help during setup. An additional snake with labeled outputs can go from the splitter and into the stagebox for the front of house console. Having your own labeled snake to the FOH makes everything easy for them as well, and saves time and reduces the risk of anything going wrong if you are to play at a festival and have limited time for changeover between the previous act and yours.

As an alternative; does most venues or events you play on supply an existing splitter? Most festivals I work on do this, for this exact purpose. Visting bands bring their own monitor console and wireless gear, and use our splitter to supply whatever channels they need for monitoring. This is done regardless of us having our own monitor console on stage or not. If this is the case for you, then a snake with labeled inputs going into your IEM console is all you need.


You can buy a splitter snake and then you can send each channel to both mixers without using outputs on the FOH console.

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