Metering on DCA faders

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This topic contains 63 replies, has 26 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Brian Brian 2 months ago.

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  • #83668
    Profile photo of SteffenR
    SteffenR
    Participant

    well… @davidco
    metering the hottest signal means that you can see if there is a signal or not
    maybe you got a different solution?

    #83669
    Profile photo of
    Anonymous

    The solution is to implement the same functionality that Yamaha and Behringer do. As I say, it’s incredibly simple to do.

    #83671
    Profile photo of Jay
    Jay
    Participant

    I’m all for the DCA metering. I have many shows that run 90% on DCA’s and while I can work around it (mostly) with meter pages on a desk, there isn’t a workaround on an ipad. I’ve had some minor panics where I thought I had no signal because the day before I was on an X32 with DCA meters.

    Remember that these meters have ballistics (attack, release, peak hold) and the “software” is actually implemented in an FPGA, so you aren’t simply dealing with a CPU/DSP summing arrays.

    A sum of channel levels, integrated independently over time with attack/release, with no relation to frequency content is meaningless.

    As a perfect example: take 2 channels with the same signal in phase and equal levels and sum them, the output is +3db higher than what went in. If I take the same 2 channels, flip the phase on one, the “sum the levels method” would still say +3db(ish) and there would be no signal coming out the other side.

    They either have the hardware capability to do it right or they don’t, aside from an indication that an individual channel is clipping there isn’t a shortcut that works for the general case.

    Jay

    #83679
    Profile photo of SteffenR
    SteffenR
    Participant

    @Jay
    why are you asking it again? did you read the whole topic?
    it is simply not possible…

    #83680
    Profile photo of
    Anonymous

    it is simply not possible…

    What makes you say that?

    #83686
    Profile photo of SteffenR
    SteffenR
    Participant

    Metering in DCA that is true metering and measures correctly needs summing and this needs busses 24 DCA mean 24 busses only for metering

    to calculate metering readouts without weighting is no option because it offers completly wrong results
    and if you add busses and inputs to a DCA (that helps organizing your channels for spill) the summing will also lead to irrelevant results

    I agree that peak and signal present indication would be possible and helpful
    as @davidco already mentioned

    #83689
    Profile photo of DavidCo
    DavidCo
    Participant

    It’s much easier than the summing that happens when you PFL a DCA, because the audio doesn’t need to be summed as it would be for a PFL (summing the audio is a more complex function). Only the channel levels need to be added, which are available for all channels at all times (see the meter page). Just simple addition of the numbers that are the AFL levels of the channels, that’s it.

    Let’s suppose there are two input channels, both fed a sine wave from the signal generator, and we polarity invert one of them. Now let’s feed them both to an audio group but also set them as members of a DCA.

    Q: With the audio group summing the two signals together and measuring the level post sum, what does the group metering say?
    Answer: they cancel out, there is no visible signal on the meters.

    Q: If you sum the metering data of each of the DCA’s members, what would the “DCA metering” say?
    Answer: Each member’s metering data doesn’t take into account its phase or polarity, so the levels will just be blindly added together without respecting coherency, and will behave the same regardless of phase/polarity with respect to each other.

    I am a programmer, and integer sums are probably one of the simplest operations a computer can do.

    Being a programmer doesn’t qualify you to talk DSP though.. Quid in the post, please.

    DC

    #83692
    Profile photo of Wolfgang
    Wolfgang
    Participant

    The example with the signals in phase opposition is quite interesting.
    but it is only valid in extreme cases. The extreme case of mutually perfectly extinguishing signals hardly ever occurs. But you could also reply here: on a bus the signals would cancel each other out, but the inputs could still be overdriven and cause distortions elsewhere. So it would still be good if there were a display of the strongest signal.

    In real situations, it has been shown that a display of the highest level in each case has proved its worth. it’s not for nothing that colleagues who know the other consoles would like to have something like this in the dLive.

    #83698
    Profile photo of
    Anonymous

    This is getting a little crazy.

    It can and has been done on other consoles, like the Yamaha and Behringer/Midas, therefore it can be done on the dLive. Don’t worry about how they would specifically go about that, just put the request in so they know that it’s a wanted feature.

    #83700
    Profile photo of Mfk0815
    Mfk0815
    Participant

    Past in the nineties there was a slogan in the biggest german electric company published to their employees: „better the second best solution now than the best one never.“
    Some of us can do teir jobs with one single „chromatic“ LED per channel on the SQ series. But on the dLive we need full accuracy on that tiny 10 segment channel metering? Hm. Imho four states are required: too less, right enought, close to clip, overload. Thats it, at leastfor music jobs.

    #83790
    Profile photo of mixJM
    mixJM
    Participant

    I had another show yesterday when I forgot that DCA didn’t have functioning meters. DCA metering is a must and I’m truly hoping it will be implemented in the next firmware release. An alternative might be a Group Spill – the same functionality as DCA spill but for input channels routed to a Group. For now I need to make two kinds of grouping – signal grouping to get my drumkit, multi mic’ed guitars, synths, etc. on single group faders on the main show layer (A) and DCA groups assigned to Soft Keys to spill the children of those groups on the surface. With DCA metering I could do without some of those signal groups. Of with Group Spill I could do without DCA grouping.

    #112686
    Profile photo of benmannell
    benmannell
    Participant

    Yes please another +1 for DCA metering. It’s so helpful!

    #113005
    Profile photo of Josh
    Josh
    Participant

    +1 For some kind of indicator of audio signal on an open, unmuted DCA

    #121633
    Profile photo of kizza42
    kizza42
    Participant

    Coming across from M32, its crazy that dLive can’t do this. In theatre, I’m mixing always on DCA’s… Would really like to see ANY sort of signal level metering for audio passing on any of the DCA’s allotted channels.

    #121636
    Profile photo of Ana
    Ana
    Participant

    +1

    Despite not being perfect as discussed – The highest level or some complicated form of weighted averaging of metering data for channels assigned to a DCA strip is still exceptionally useful.

    As an engineer, we of course need to understand the caveats and potential differences that this type of metering would be showing us. But, we already consider metering a ‘guide’ only and balance should inevitably come from the ‘ears.’ So, if it’s incorrect due to the way in which the audio in these channels may be summing/canceling it’s no big deal. How much does channel metering inform your fader position? For me, it’s more about having a visual indication of the channel operating correctly anyway. A meter clearly shows the presence of a signal and extraneous noise.

    After moving away from using an A@H surface and using a computer-based mixing station setup – this is one of the many advantages this software presents and it implements this feature very nicely.

    For me in musical theatre, this metering is invaluable and has made certain things quicker and easier:

    – It shows me the presence of a signal for assigned actors
    – It allows for the quick identification of extraneous noise from cast microphones (even when grouped, you can hit the spill button and find the channel quickly)
    – It can help much more quickly identify cast members who may be too loud or out of balance (even when grouped, this at least helps narrow down which group this cast member might be a part of and can then again be accessed by the spill function)
    – Helps develop a generalised overview of ensemble group strength and how this might change throughout a show as groupings change.
    – Gives accurate metering when only a single channel is assigned to a DCA (direct copy of the channel meter itself)

    In this case, the metering is Prefader – fine by me.

    In the console world, this is becoming a sought-after feature. I liken it to the presence of RTA’s on the EQ page we now routinely have access to on digital mixers but was met with friction by some when they were first implemented on lower-end consoles. Perhaps a similar evolution.

    Throw it in and have a button to disable it for those who don’t want to use it.

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