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This topic contains 14 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of AsherN AsherN 10 months ago.

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  • #94705
    Profile photo of Lozion
    Lozion
    Participant

    Gents, a partner and I are doing a studio install centered on a SQ5 and 2x DX1608 in a multi-room environment.

    we plan on wiring every room with redundant CAT6 cabling terminating in the control room to the SQ-Link port.
    Since the 2nd DX box has to be run in series to the 1st and considering that the main room may need more then 16 i/o’s, what is the way to run a RJ45 type “patchbay” allowing us to route signal to and from all the rooms? Would a gigabit switch be the ticket?
    Many thanks,

    #94708
    Profile photo of SteffenR
    SteffenR
    Participant

    Would a gigabit switch be the ticket?

    I’m afraid no and of course, it depends… 😉

    What is your goal? Maybe a DX Hub could help…

    #94727
    Profile photo of Lozion
    Lozion
    Participant

    Hi, the goal s to route the SQ-Link protocol to the switch so that all the rooms RJ45 terminating at the switch can be patched in and out according to will. Makes sense? Possible? Txs.

    #94746
    Profile photo of Lozion
    Lozion
    Participant

    Keith?

    #94749
    Profile photo of KeithJ A&H
    KeithJ A&H
    Moderator

    Hi @lozion

    The A&H protocols that the SLink port can switch between are all intended for direct connection and are not IP based (like Dante for example), meaning it is not possible to create a ‘star’ configuration of units using a switch.
    You can connect/cascade a maximum of two expanders to DX or dSnake ports (as found on Qu/GLD/dLive), and this is also the case when an SLink port is running in either of these modes.
    The GigaACE/GX protocol is slightly different as it can be used for direct connection and there are a couple of exceptions with expansion:
    The DX-Hub – ‘translates’ between the 128×128 96kHz Gigabit GigaACE protocol and the 32×32 96kHz Fast Ethernet DX protocol.
    The GX4816 – which is like having an expander with local I/O that also includes the last two ports of a DX-Hub built-in (and the second of these is intelligent and can be used with DX or a ME system!)

    When connecting directly to an SLink port, the port detects the speed of the connection then discovers expanders to know which mode to be in.
    If it detects a gigabit speed (which could be from GigaACE, but also from connection to a gigabit switch) then it will switch to GigaACE.
    If instead, it detects 10/100 fast ethernet, then it will switch to DX if it discovers a DX unit, or dSnake if it discovers a dSnake unit OR nothing (which would be a ME unit).

    So it is possible to use a switch in-between the SLink port and an expander, but it has to be running at the correct speed for the protocol you are using and there can only be one expander connected directly to that switch.
    There’s other things to consider if you use a managed switch.

    For the situation you describe, in theory you could use [ multiple rooms <> 10/100 unmanaged switch <> SLink port ] and make sure you only connect the DX units in one place at a time and have nothing else on that network.

    But we’d recommend a direct connection… or Dante.

    Sounds like a fun project!

    Cheers,
    Keith.

    PS – I realise you know most of this, but I’ve expanded (pun intended) for completeness.

    #94755
    Profile photo of Lozion
    Lozion
    Participant

    Right. Time to apply the good Ole axiom, “if it can go South, it will..”
    Txs Keith.

    #103840
    Profile photo of samabenie
    samabenie
    Participant

    I am trying to do a similar setup. However, I have 3 DX168s, a gigabit network switch, and a SQ6. I would like to connect all 3 DX168s to the network switch, but it sounds like that is not possible?

    Why can’t I do a setup mentioned on page 7 here with a switch rather than a DX hub? https://www.allen-heath.com/media/SLinkConnections_V1_5_0.pdf

    I have tried this setup with 1 DX168 and all cat6 runs, but my SQ6 seems to negotiate/recognize gigaACE/gigabit and does not recognize the DX168 that is plugged in. When I downgrade the cable or run directly to the DX168, it shows the DX protocol and everything works.

    Would it be sufficient to run a network switch with 1 gigabit and four 100 megabit ports? This would force the 4 ports to DX protocol/100megabit speed and force the gigabit/gigaACE connection to the SQ6?

    Let me know if that sounds right or if you think that workflow will work.

    #103841
    Profile photo of samabenie
    samabenie
    Participant

    Is the statement on the below article saying that is not possible?

    https://support.allen-heath.com/hc/en-gb/articles/4403553378449-Audio-Networking-gigaACE-and-DX-networking-VLANs-and-fibre-optics

    “Parallel connection of multiple DX Expanders on a switch is not possible.”

    #103842
    Profile photo of SteffenR
    SteffenR
    Participant

    Yes, that’s what the statement says…

    #103844
    Profile photo of Søren Steinmetz
    Søren Steinmetz
    Participant

    The difference is the DX-Hub has an internal GigAce “switch” that a normal ethernet switch does not.

    The issue is we are talking two completely different types of communication, with only the cables and connectors being similar.

    #103846
    Profile photo of samabenie
    samabenie
    Participant

    “The difference is the DX-Hub has an internal GigAce “switch” that a normal ethernet switch does not.”

    Can you expand on this? I am wanting to understand the reasoning or logic behind this.

    #103861
    Profile photo of Søren Steinmetz
    Søren Steinmetz
    Participant

    The DXHub and all the A&H protocols (GigACE, SLink etc) are not based on the Ethernet protocol.

    All of the A&H protocols are end to end based topology, where Ethernet (normal 10/100/1000baseT/TX etc) are star based topology.

    The main reason I could guess is kinda the same why programs only work on either Windows, Mac or Linux and not on all of them.

    Guess someone better at english than me (and not on painkillers after an operation) might be better at explaining.

    #103862
    Profile photo of KeithJ A&H
    KeithJ A&H
    Moderator

    @Søren Steinmetz – Hope you’re feeling better soon! Embarrassingly, my English is not better than yours, nor is my networking knowledge, but I’ll have a go at trying to clarify my previous post.

    @samabenie
    A network switch allows multiple connections on the same network by quickly ‘switching’ between them. For this to work, each device needs to have an address so the data is routed to the right place.
    Our proprietary protocols are layer 2 (unlike Dante or Waves for example), meaning there is no address and connections are point-to-point.
    Cascading expanders is possible as the second expander in the cascade is connected to the first which packages all the audio and messaging together for connection to/from the mixer. You can think of it like the first DX168 you connect always has a 32×32 channel connection to the console, and the second block of 16 inputs/outputs only gets used when another DX unit is connected. i.e. You do not connect to the second unit in the cascade directly.
    The DX Hub works by converting between the gigaACE protocol (128×128) and the DX protocol (4x 32×32) and carrying out all the packing/unpacking of audio and messaging in each direction. It is not a switch, but an adaptor/convertor/translator.

    As Søren points out – we use standard networking connections and cabling for your convenience, but that doesn’t mean these are networked devices (in an IT sense).
    It’s a bit like being able to use XLR’s for analogue audio, AES and DMX. None of which are compatible.

    Hope this is more cleararer!
    Keith.

    #103864
    Profile photo of Søren Steinmetz
    Søren Steinmetz
    Participant

    @keithjah Thanks Keith, it is getting better day by day, should be back to normal in a week I hope (getin for a musical soon) 🙂

    And right it was where your protocols was placed on the OSI layers I had forgotten.

    #103939
    Profile photo of AsherN
    AsherN
    Participant

    A switch can be used but you are still limited to one SQ connecting to one expander. As Keith said, SLink is not an IP protocol, it is a layer2 protocol. A switch moves data at L2. We have a setup where our SQ is on a moving cart, with 4 possible connect location in our Sanctuary and social hall. Those 4 locations are connected with a standard L2 switch. The SQ and expander will always find each other, but only on a one-to-one relationship.

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