iDR32, MADI, RME and Mainstage

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This topic contains 8 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of guyharris guyharris 13 years, 6 months ago.

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  • #22569
    Profile photo of guyharris

    In the absence of Dante, and with a need to get digital signals into the iDR, we think we’ve decided to drop the M-MMO card and D-OUT solution, in favour of the M-MADI card and the RME HDSPe card, as well as using PL10s to control the in-ear monitors, instead of Aviom.

    We want to use the AES outs from the HDSPe to send digital signals to the Crown i-Techs, and the AES ins to route the outputs of the AKG DSR700s into the iDR. Wordclock will be sent from the HDSPe.

    Our MacPro runs Mainstage and Ivory for the sounds from the master keyboards.

    Does this system sound do-able, and am I overlooking any problems?


    Guy Harris

    Profile photo of gilparente

    sounds do-able. Just pricey.
    I’d probably wait until NAMM and see what else comes out.
    iPAD app may be an easier way for you to control the mixes.
    That way you can sill use the MMO + D-OUT option. I’ve used that a few times now in some installs and it works darn good.
    Plus, that would let you install the D-OUT in your amp rack and just pull a Cat5 from console.
    Remember, there is nothing wrong with using analog inputs from the Mac. Has been done for a very long time now. I can understand your
    consideration for keeping everything in the digital world.
    Good luck.

    Gil Parente
    Design & Integration
    Entertainment Arts, Inc.

    Profile photo of Mr-B

    Think I would definitely wait for DANTE, I recently changed to Labgruppen LM26’s in the amp racks and the control possibilities are amazing, have booked a demo of the PLM series amplifiers as you get a lot more telemetry back from the system.Just think, to integrate your whole PA system directly to the iLive with additional control nodes provided by a laptop somewhere on the network, be able to multi-track record the show as well, must be worth a little patience? [:p]

    Profile photo of guyharris

    Personally, I think Dante is going to take longer than people think (it’s been promised for quite a while now), and I need a solution now, not in 1 month, 3 months, after NAMM … etc. Dante will not allow me to get digital information into the system, if we decide to go for the AKG digital mics.

    The reason I want to avoid the analogue outputs from the soundcard is latency and the occasional problems we’ve had with Firewire, overheating, etc. The soundcard is an unnecessary link in the chain.

    We have considered using iPads to control monitor mixes; it’s not that much of a price difference to the PL10 when you buy smart and in bulk. However, once again, the iPad app is not yet available, and it will always be subject to the whims of wireless ethernet. Additionally, I would really need to lock down the ability of users, so that they can access only their own mixes: not sure that’s really practical at present, and especially not until I’ve seen the iPad app working! I would love to lose the CAT5 cables on the stage – it would be one of the last major ‘clutter’ sources sorted.

    I think I’ve learned that although iLive is a great system, we are nowhere near ‘everything talks to everything’. That’s going to take at least another couple of years. Until that time, I can afford the MADI solution, which I think is at least 3 years future-proof, and more expandable than Dante.

    And thanks for your answers and input … ;-)

    Profile photo of woutert

    Once Dante arrives, I think you might want to check out the DGlink system. It seems to be modular in terms of a mix between digital and analogue in/out but I don’t know any more than I could find in the brochure and the specs:

    On their site:
    “DGlinkTM is specifically designed for live applications that require the integration and distribution of Analogue, AES-EBU, and Ethernet based protocols.”

    My prayers have been heard, Dante is coming!

    PS I’d also wait for Dante and meanwhile spend the savings on your musicians, they ultimately make the biggest difference :-))))

    Profile photo of guyharris

    We take delivery of our MADI system today … I’ll post an update in a few days.


    Profile photo of guyharris

    Big disappointment with the MADI set-up … Unacceptable latency, almost certainly in the Mac Pro.

    I haven’t measured the latency yet, as we didn’t have enough time, but it was initially in the order of 70 – 100ms, and we got it down to around 40 – 50ms, by tinkering with different sync settings and the internal latency settings in Mainstage.

    Had contact with TMAudio, the importer for iLive and RME here in Holland, and they’ll get on to RME in Belgium, to look for a solution.

    One thing that the PC users might be able to assist with: the TMAudio guy said that the Windows software had the ability to choose latency. In the manual, it states that there are 8 different buffer sizes, from 0.7 to 93ms. The control software for the HDSPe seems not to have this option, at least with the OSX software. Is this correct, or am I missing something?

    We have some time to fix this issue, as we have several fallback solutions, including the MMO card.


    Profile photo of guyharris

    Good news! :-)

    We found out the problem with the latency, which was the Mainstage output. By reducing the sample rate to 32, we have ‘zero’ latency.

    I have not done a full gig with the new set-up yet (that will be tomorrow and Friday), but I am extremely pleased with the way the MADI runs. The response / feeling from the keyboard samples running from the Mac is faultless: if anything, it will take a little getting used to, because the latency is so low. When we were running the MOTU896, the response was very good, but there is a very noticeable improvement. On top of that, being able to separate the different layers as tracks in the iDR32 means that the FoH engineer has proper control over the mix, without having to affect the in-ear that the player is mixing himself.

    I will also try simultaneous MADI in and out, sending samples and recording the entire show in the next few days, and hope it doesn’t crash Logic / Mainstage! Perhaps Reaper would be a better bet for getting the WAV data in … :-)

    Profile photo of guyharris

    First gig carried out successfully.

    I put Logic / Mainstage on minimum latency, and streamed 4 samples (including Ivory) out of Mainstage, whilst simultaneously recording 6 tracks (5 stereo and 1 mono) back into Logic from MADI. There was no noticeable latency in the audio output to the iDR, although I thought I heard a couple of strange digital anomalies, like a reverse gated ‘whoop’. I increased the size of the buffer from 32 to 64 samples, and this appeared to cure this problem.

    This gig was only piano and drums, but I was very happy with the performance of the MADI / iDR / Logic system.

    We have a much larger gig on Friday, with 2 pianos, drums and 3 brass, so that will prove a tougher test.

    Only one negative point: the routing within the iDR. We wanted to set up an extra PL10 for the drummer, for him to control / pre-mix the in-ear monitor mix, through a Stereo Group, but it’s seemingly not possible to assign PL10 rotary faders to this task with the bus set-up we have:

    5 x Stereo Groups
    2 x Stereo FX
    6 x Stereo Aux (for in-ear mix)
    0 x Matrix
    Main: LR Sub

    The only way to get this bus set-up is to lose the ‘sub’ mix, and make an extra Stereo Aux, just for the drum in-ear sub mix.

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