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Thread: Sync'ing an X32 and X32 Rack for Control of Additional Mic Pre's

  1. #11
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    Good Morning! I used the X32 for the 1st time last night and...It went OK. Had a slight issue with the general EQ setting I chose for the mic's, and an issue with overall volume (too loud in places, too soft in others). I believe it had to do w/some subgroup routing issues that were resolved by the end of Worship. Also couldn't get a strong enough signal to the CD Recorders for a good recording. Actually, couldn't get a signal to them at all for the 1st 20min. They are on a Matrix that wasn't cooperating until 20min into the Message. I was supposed to go fishing today, but after last night... NO CHANCE!

    "In order to help with this project, we would need to know how many (and what kind) of inputs and outputs you actually will need - like a layout of the whole setup."

    So my general layout is as follows:
    At the Musicians position on stage, I need 15-28 inputs. On a given Sunday, I use between 15-18. During concerts, plays, & musicals, that number can go up to 28. (8-14 drum mic's which include the occasional MPC/Drum Cat/Trigger usage, 2 for the B3's Leslie cabinet, 2 for the Motif, sometimes 2 for an addition Motif, 1 for bass, 1-4 for guitar, 1-2 for percussion, & 1 for Sax). At that same position, I need to send 6 musicians stereo feeds for IEM's. That number can increase to 9 during concerts. I can go back to stage monitors when that is the case but I'd prefer not to.
    This is where the Rack will go. Utilizing the Rack will limit the stage box in the floor at this position to sending the remaining two stage monitor mixes.

    At center stage, I need 3-4 inputs for choir mic's. This is accomplished by a stage box in the floor that feeds the FOH position. There is also an addition monitor send located at the front of center stage that has it's own stage box that is fed by FOH. There are additional in's at this position that we utilize from time to time (laptops or other audio/video in's for visiting speakers who'd like to run their own presentations)

    At FOH, I need all other inputs/outputs (inputs: 12 handhelds, 3-4 choir mic's, 3 lapels, 2 computers, 2 CD players, 1 iPod, DirectTV, Skype, DVD/VCR) (outputs: aux's for two remaining stage mixes, the center stage monitor aux, foyer, admin bldg., & 1 sanctuary fill. 4 Matrix's, L/R mains, 2 subwoofer channels [1 for the top subs in the line arrays, and 1 for the floor subs] that previously had their own aux outs, & 2 CD recorders)

    As with any other environment, we always have to be prepared to run something off of/into some obscure analog/digital device, laptop, phonograph, Studer tape deck, etc... There are also conferences, concerts, musicals, plays, etc.. that must be supported.

    I just connected the DriveRack I mentioned and now use that to feed my L/R mains, subwoofers, foyer and TV broadcast. That reduces 6 outs down to two off the X32. I just have to fine-tune the x-over points on the DriveRack and assign the output channels correctly as it's feeding 4 different mixes.

    So there you have it... my rooms in's/out's in a (BIG) nutshell. Now that you have a better understanding of my general needs, please advise me as to some methods for putting the Rack and X32 combination to use in the best way possible. Again, my goal is to have at least 48 individual, simultaneously controllable in's and numerous outs. Monitors and FOH are run from the FOH position, and I need the Rack signals sent to IEM's and the FOH position simultaneously. That way I can control the instruments in the house as well as all the mic's mentioned above. As I mentioned, I normally utilize between 34-40 inputs simultaneously week to week.

    Please advise...

  2. #12
    Super User Paul Vannatto's Avatar
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    Hi Leslie,

    Thanks for taking the time to provide those details. A quick glance at it, I think it is very doable, particularly because of how well you have the inputs zoned (musicians inputs into the Rack which will provide the IEM mixbus outputs). When I get home (in a couple of hours), I can provide you with my routing suggestions.

    Paul

  3. #13
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    Hi Leslie,

    Sorry for the delay. It was due to some domestic issues I encountered when I arrived home, as well as pondering the best approach for your setup. I still believe that the solution is still doable, except for a couple of possible snags. Let me explain.

    First can I summarize my understanding/assumptions of your setup/needs. If anything is incorrect, please correct.
    1. You have 2 functional system zones - musicians/monitors and FOH
    2. The musician zone comprises of instruments, drums and vocals of the musicians - a total count ranging from 15 to 28 inputs. These inputs would need to be mixed for 6-9 stereo IEM and a couple of mono monitor wedges. Another mix of these signals is also required for FOH. Both monitor mixes and FOH mixes (of these signals) are to be controlled from FOH position.
    3. The FOH zone comprises of both mono and stereo input signals
    * Mono signals - 12 handhelds (wireless?), 3-4 choir mics (hanging?), 3 lapels = total 19 inputs
    * Stereo signals - 2 computers, 2 CD players, iPod, DirectTV, Skype, DVD/VCR = total 16 inputs
    * Total inputs (mono and stereo) = 35

    Assumptions
    1. FOH signals are not required to be independently mixed in the IEM mixes. These are for FOH only.
    2. The 2 monitor amps located at FOH will be fed only signals from FOH. No musician signals (instruments, drums, etc).
    3. All signals required for the IEM mixes will be connected to the X32 Rack at stage, and will not require any signals from FOH (eg. the 12 handhelds, etc.).

    If any of these assumptions are incorrect, then the X32 platform will probably not be adequate for your needs. The reason is that each of the X32 units (engines) only has 32 + 6 route-able inputs available at any point in time. Signals required for an mix must be first inputted to that particular X32 engine in order to be processed.

    The FOH X32 (full console, I assume) has 32 Midas preamps plus 6 Aux In inputs (total 38). The above count total is 35 required inputs, leaving only 3 remaining available. At minimum, a stereo feed from X32 Rack would be required to bring a mix of those inputs to FOH.
    - Outputs are 16 XLR plus 6 1/4" (total 22). Total outputs are not an issue here.

    The musician/IEM console is the X32 Rack, which has 16 Midas preamps plus 6 Aux In inputs (total 22). Total inputs (above) range from 16-28. The max inputs are 4 short of physically available. Granted, the X32 Rack does have an additional 16 inputs available in the X32 engine and an additional S16 or ADA8200 can be supplemented for added physical inputs.
    - Outputs are 8 XLR plus 6 1/4" outputs (total 14). The max outputs (9 stereo IEM) are 6 short of available. Again, an S16 or ADA8200 can be supplemented for added physical outputs.

    If these assumptions are correct, then there is enough capacity (barely) for the two X32 (full console and Rack) to provide the necessary requirements for your setup. The only signal interconnectivity between the two X32's would be a master mix (mains LR) from the Rack to the FOH console. That can be accomplished in this manner:
    X32 Rack
    * Routing, Out 1-16 - assign Main L to Output 01 and Main R to Output 02
    * Routing, AES50-A (or B), Outputs 1-8 -> Out 1-8.
    FOH console
    * Routing, Aux In Remap -> AES50 A1-2 (or B1-2)
    This will provide Aux 3-6 as local FOH inputs.

    If any of the FOH inputs are required also in the IEM mixes, they could be routed (in addition to the FOH needs) to the Rack via the AES50 in this manner. Since you are not using the P16's you can use that bus to mix/match various signals to be sent to the Rack.
    FOH console
    * Routing, P16 Out - assign P16 Out 01 to one of the inputs. Continue to assign further P16 outputs accordingly.
    * Routing, AES50-A (or B) - assign Outputs 1-8 -> P16 1-8. If necessary, assign Outputs 9-16 -> P16 9-16
    X32 Rack
    * Routing, home - assign Inputs 17-24 -> AES50 A1-8 (or B). If necessary, assign Inputs 25-32 -> AES50 A9-16 (or B).

    Paul

  4. #14
    Super User Paul Vannatto's Avatar
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    The control of the X32 Rack from FOH position can be accomplished using an iPad (with X32-Mix), android tablet (with Mixing Station) or a laptop/desktop (using X32-Edit). The latter would be my choice with a cat5e cable from the Rack ethernet port to the laptop.

    Paul

  5. #15
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    Hi Leslie,

    Another option I thought of to provide more versatility at FOH is to use the Eurorack Pro RX1602 (http://www.behringer.com/EN/Products/RX1602.aspx) for the media type inputs (computers, CD players, iPod, Skype, etc.). This unit would premix 8 stereo inputs to one stereo input to the X32. That is what we did at our church and it works great. This would free up 14 channels on the X32 for inputs from the Rack if necessary.

    Paul

  6. #16
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    Thank You for your detailed reply! Once again, I truly appreciate your time and assistance.

    Assumptions
    1. FOH signals are not required to be independently mixed in the IEM mixes. These are for FOH only.
    2. The 2 monitor amps located at FOH will be fed only signals from FOH. No musician signals (instruments, drums, etc).
    3. All signals required for the IEM mixes will be connected to the X32 Rack at stage, and will not require any signals from FOH (eg. the 12 handhelds, etc.).

    1. If I understand this statement correctly, then it is incorrect... which leads to statement #3 as well. 8-10 of the wireless handhelds are used by the Praise team and service assistant, and must be sent to the IEM's. Also, the choir mic's and at least one of the lapels needs to be sent there as well. Otherwise, the musicians won't be able to hear any of the vocalists, or the Pastor when he comes up. I kept the handhelds @ FOH because, short of putting another X32 on stage, there would't be enough inputs @ Monitor position.

    2. The monitor amps @ FOH also need the musicians instruments fed into them, otherwise the vocalists won't be able to hear the music. The two remaining monitors originating @ FOH are for the Praise Team/Choir, and the front fills (wedges at the base of the stage aimed into the crowd to fill sound gaps in the 1st few rows).

    The more I type, the more I think... "I'M SCREWED HERE!!!" Unless all IEM's and monitor mixes originate from FOH, I think I'm either done for, or at best, in a VERY STICKY situation!! It seems like I need to move at least 10 handhelds and the choir mic's to the monitor position, or I'm going to experience a comedy of errors trying to get everything everywhere it needs to go.

    Can the send's be split on these consoles? Meaning, can I control the handhelds/choir/lapels from FOH, AND send them to the Rack? Would I need the X-ADAT card at both position to pull that off, or is there an easier way? Maybe something similar to how I have the X32's inputs going into my MacBook Pro via USB to record in ProTools or Logic, then I can send it back out to mix or do a virtual soundcheck. Is there something similar I can use as a through to/from one of the devices?

    More Questions...
    1. What About AES50? Can I go out the Rack into the X32 AES50A, then go out the X32 into the Rack AES50B? Thus making the inputs from the Rack (1-16) accessible on the X32, and the inputs from the X32 (17-32) accessible on the Rack. That way I can send the instrument signals to the X32, then turn around the mic signals to the Rack. If this works, while allowing me to still have control of the signals at the originating device, this may solve everything...
    2. In reference to question #1, doesn't AES50 send/receive 48 channels simultaneously? Would I even need to take up both A/B ports like I mentioned in question #1?
    3. How could split gain help/hurt in this situation?


    The only other option I can think of to get what I need accomplished is spending over $10K (more than twice the $$$ I just spent) & picking up a used Yamaha M7CL-48 w/stage rack. While I KNOW that would work... I'd have to return these devices and allocate additional funds which would take more time!!!

    Please Advise... Again!!

  7. #17
    Super User Paul Vannatto's Avatar
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    Hi Leslie.

    Thanks for the response. It does clear up what I suspected in my assumptions (worse case scenario). The problem I see is not what you can send via AES50 (yes you can send up to 48 channels via 6 blocks of 8, both directions in the AES50). The problem is inputting them into the X32 once they arrive, particularly the FOH console. As I mentioned, if you add up all inputs to the FOH, you have 35 inputs. Total inputs is 38 (plus the USB player, which is not re-routeable). But if you do what we did at our church and combine the "media" type inputs using the RX1602, that would free up 14 inputs in that console. The other option is to add an S16 or second Rack to boost up the monitor X32 to the 32 inputs, then move the 12 handhelds to that zone. Eventually you will need to add there, anyways (max inputs = 28).

    In reality, your setup is maxing the X32 platform. With some creative routing and input switching via scenes, etc., it could be possible to squeeze in most everything required. But that would probably require some compromises that may or may not be acceptable.

    If it is one of those "it must work", we are still willing to help with the workarounds.

    Paul

  8. #18
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    Good Morning!
    I've been away in sessions and X32 trials for the last few days and am just getting a free 30 seconds to follow-up on these concerns.

    I first want to go back and address a statement from one of your previous messages. In it you stated a basic mono/stereo channel count to ensure you understood our environment. It read:

    3. The FOH zone comprises of both mono and stereo input signals
    * Mono signals - 12 handhelds (wireless?), 3-4 choir mics (hanging?), 3 lapels = total 19 inputs
    * Stereo signals - 2 computers, 2 CD players, iPod, DirectTV, Skype, DVD/VCR = total 16 inputs
    * Total inputs (mono and stereo) = 35

    There are some amendments here. Specifically w/the stereo channels... the only input thats currently coming in stereo is the iPod. All others listed above are now coming in mono. I'm sacrificing these additional channels now, to try and accommodate all the in's/out's that I will need in my "worst case scenario" concert in's/out's I gave earlier. This has reduced input channels used at the X32.
    I also have to amend the out's section on my previous comments. After install, trial & error, I'm returning a few of the out's to the Matrix's they were originally assigned to. I tried moving the foyer and TV broadcast off of individual matrix's, and onto the additional DriveRack outs... this was ill-conceived. I can't control the output volume of the DriveRack channel by channel, only in two channel pairs... meaning my TV broadcast and foyer were always at the same level. My foyer speakers were allergic to this concept! The signal strength was FAR too strong for these in-ceiling speakers, and the sound they made was akin to a cat scratching sheets of metal paper while playing a set of drums made of pots and pans... it was BAD!! I was able to keep my broadcast on the DriveRack, but returned the foyer, greenroom, & CD recording to matrix's that I send off the 1/4' Aux outs.

    Another statement to address... "If it is one of those "it must work", we are still willing to help with the workarounds."
    This is one of those it must work moments. The Yamaha M7CL-48 is not an option for us right now, therefore we are all or nothing into this scenario. It either all works, or it all goes back! The only other option is to do what was done a few weeks ago for the conference I mentioned... use the X32 at the monitor position and split the signal to the Allen & Heath GL4800 that was at the FOH position previously. While this worked wonderfully for that short term scenario, the additional snake run made this unusable for the long term.

    The Rack will be here any day now and, as mentioned previously, I'd LOVE to have some insight as to methods to make this work. I'd hate to have to return all of this seemingly wonderful equipment because I couldn't find a suitable workaround. But unfortunately, that is where I'll be if I am unsuccessful in my search for resolutions. Im sure the A&H GL4800 would love to come out of its two week retirement, but I don't think it would be welcomed back with much fan fair by those who saw/know/enjoyed the direction we were headed in.

    Thank you again, & please advise...!

  9. #19
    Super User Paul Vannatto's Avatar
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    Hi Leslie,

    It does seem like you have gone through "trial by fire" so far with this. With those compromises and some creative routing, I think we can make it fit. Unfortunately I'm tied up for the next 6-8 hours, but will work on it when I get home.

    Paul

  10. #20
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    Thank you sir! I look forward to your reply...

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