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Hi Jared,

I usually teach busses using a few different analogies.
In a nutshell, busses are what lets you combine (mix) signals together. In the case of the ilive, you have a possibility of 32 combinations/mixes/busses. The destination of these busses determines what “type” of busses we call them.
LR buss goes to the Main speakers – so we call it the Main Busses
FX busses feed FX units
AUX/Monitor busses feed monitor wedges or etc.
SOLO (PFL-AFL) feeds your headphones and/or wedge.
Matrix feeds extra outputs
Group busses are for you to combine signals before you send them elsewhere.

I usually explained to my students as a school buss that gathers the kids to take them to the destination.
The other analogy is comparing to a water duct syetem, but it is actually easier to explain with a white board.. :-)

Hopefully this helps.

Gil Parente
Design & Integration
Entertainment Arts, Inc.
iLive 176, T112
iDR48 , iDR16, iDR10
Multiple iPads