We need a mini Avantis

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This topic contains 35 replies, has 12 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Hugh Hugh 7 months, 2 weeks ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 36 total)
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  • #110014
    Profile photo of Hugh
    Hugh
    Participant

    Tom, The QL1 is a very disappointing re-entry in the small footprint console market. Not that Yamaha will give a damn about my opinion but after a 30 month “time out” I expected at least a little bit better than yesterdays 24/48K digital processing and where are the the promised vastly improved pre amps given their price point at almost 10K. That is paying one hell of a big premium for convenience connectivity. If we have learned nothing else from Behringer’s brand buying spree, big name (Neve in this case) influence may or may not get the job done. Yamaha has, in the past, offered the worst internal pre amps of any major manufacturer: they have a lot of ground in this regard to make up. For some unknown reason they are not providing much, if any, info about their new I/Os and converters in the QL 1. Furthermore IMO the QL 1 cannot sonically compete with an SQ5 and given the fact that the SQ5 has a MSRP 4K price point the price/value comparative metric is a no brainer.
    The Mini Avantis I described would be a unique product with out a competitor any where close to it’s assumed price point. Thats how a Brand/Market Share foothold is developed and expanded.
    Hugh

    #110075
    Profile photo of Tom
    Tom
    Participant

    Hi Hugh,

    I respect your opinion, but I can’t agree with you on your assessment. If you cut an avantis in half, it would have a striking comparison to a QL1.

    – One big screen
    – More info to display on that screen (compared to something like an SQ)
    – Similar form factor
    – Similar fader count
    – Both made by major console companies
    – Both have expansion options (yamaha has a lot more here with their MY cards)
    – Pricing in the ball park.
    – I’m not sure how many people get excited in the diff btw 48k and 96k.

    Can’t agree with you on trashing yamaha preamps either. Heck, you and I have both seen posts on Gearslutz with a golden eared well known recordist using TF preamps.

    You might not make that comparison, but I suspect a number of consumers would. The real question is, “what does Allen and Heath think?”

    Tom

    #110079
    Profile photo of Hugh
    Hugh
    Participant

    Tom, I am glad to have a reasoned discussion pursuant to the two existing subject small consoles. (QL1 & SQ5) I respect differing opinions however strongly believe it is important to quantify the historical progress that has occurred in all digital audio processing since the QL1 was released in March 2013. This is at the core of my less than favorable comments about the QL1’s re entry in the console market after the Yamaha 2+year “covid time out”.

    1) The QL1 does have a much bigger processing screen than the SQ5.
    2) Form factor & fader count in both are very similar and they are both offered by stable corporate entities.
    3) QL1 does have more expansion card slots.
    4) The MSRP price points: SQ5 $4,000. QL1 $10,000. (No where close to the same, The QL1 has a two and a half times greater price point)
    5) The SQ5 was released in Oct. 2017, three and a half years after the QL1, with a new pre amp design to optimize the new 24/96K FPGA XCIV core processing. IMO the sonic quality difference alone makes the SQ5 a much better value but after plugging in the price difference it becomes a no brainer..

    Tom, IMO this is where the rubber hits the road: the Steinberg D pres and Neve designed Steinberg processing Yamaha console core is still centered around first generation digital technology. The SQ line has expansion options that features D-Live I/Os or their new “Prime” I/O system that introduced a new world standard for detail and transparency and absolutely optimized their new generation leading FPGA XCIV core processing.
    The Yamaha flagship LS9 had the worst pres of any name brand console, there isn’t much disagreement about that fact, and this was the basis for my comment about the ground they needed to make up. The Steinberg “D” pres are a big up grade from the LS9 pre amp disaster however doubling the I/O transistors is not exactly in the same area code with the d-live system or most certainly the incredible Prime I/Os.

    I replace a grand piano with a Yamaha Stage piano in my studio years ago and I am delighted with the it’s dependable, maintenance free performance: however my experience with Yamaha consoles has not been as good. My grandson summed it up the best, He is the FOH mixer for a large church with a CL desk and his comment to me was “it is rather Clunky” to manage when compared to his personal A&H QU gear that also has yesterdays 24/48K technology.

    If Yamaha is going to stay relevant in the audio console market, they will need to forgo their past commitment to closed brand connectivity and develop better expansion options. The new Avantis IL screen is cutting edge technology that is light years ahead of the OL and with 24 faders to manage 64 inputs, it has 12 internal inputs and for the desk alone it is priced at 10K: adding a GX4816 expansion stage box and D pack adds $5,400. bringing it’s MSRP total 16K. The QL5 has a MSRP of 18K before needed expansion boxes are acquired. The main two points I want to make are: 1) The Yamaha desks are not readily adaptable to todays live scaled needs & 2) They are Way over priced for yesterdays technology.
    Hugh

    #110857
    Profile photo of Cohesive
    Cohesive
    Participant

    I love my Avantis but sometimes it is a struggle to fit it in a venue, a half sized version of the Avantis (single screen one fader bank) would be amazing especially if it kept the basic functionality and cross compatibility with show files. Also for big shows, having a smaller version (that can fit in what little space I have left in my van) that could plug and play if it’s big brother went down would be invaluable for a small operator like me.

    #110872
    Profile photo of Hugh
    Hugh
    Participant

    Cohesive has perfectly described the need for a “Mini Avantis”: my initial request was never aimed at replacing the wonderful SQ5 entry level desk. It is now, and always has been, a plea for a small footprint, full processing Avantis with half of the tactile controls and very limited local I/Os. IMO the market demand for a “Mini” is far greater than for the full sized Avantis. Large scale touring riders will generally spec, for very good reasons, the D-Live flagship line. The Avantis is a “tweaner offering” that misses the scaled down target market of most plug up and play road gear.
    World class sonic quality and processing does not necessarily need to be in a large scale footprint or a big channel count in it’s application.
    Hugh

    #110882
    Profile photo of Gregg Grey
    Gregg Grey
    Participant

    +1

    #114231
    Profile photo of cheu78
    cheu78
    Participant

    For what is worth I totally agree with Hugh on all aspects.
    My suggestions for a mini Avantis with:
    – 1 screen
    – 16 faders (you can do 12, plus 4 on a separate bucket, kinda GLD)
    – some more knobs and pushbuttons for regular controls like eq/comp, the basic stuff!
    – 4 user rotaries like in the SQ6, these are really a great thing!
    – only 8 I/O on the back of the console plus 1 AES I/O, are probably more than enough (or even 6 like on the dLive).
    – lighter, less bulkier, can reduce the armrest a little bit too, it’s quite deep imho
    – keep the 2 expansion slot

    howdy

    Cheu

    #114234
    Profile photo of cheu78
    cheu78
    Participant

    would also probably add hw metering too (like dLive C class) and maybe a one 3.5 stereo input somewhere..

    howdy

    Cheu

    #114251
    Profile photo of Hugh
    Hugh
    Participant

    cheu78, there is an apparent reluctance for the audio industry to recognize the demand and up scale desires of small channel count users. IMO there are 10 times the number of 48 channel, or less, users than bigger format consoles that really need to be attending more that 48 performance inputs. Apparently the small channel count users are considered “entry level customers” and probably are not involved in professional audio pursuits: nothing could be further from the truth. Given this market assumption, denying critical and needed ancillary functions in the small format market is fools gold: perhaps A&H will be the first major audio gear producer to establish a viable “mini Avantis” type of breakout product for discriminating small channel count users. The ability to select and pay for needed functions with an optional soft ware menu could be financially extremely beneficial for A&H.
    Hugh

    #114279
    Profile photo of cheu78
    cheu78
    Participant

    Hey Hugh,
    I hear you..

    Maybe the market is too small for something like that, and doesn’t appeal the rental part of it, where the C1500 or the sq5 are already covering.. to some extent..

    Maybe this should be posted in the Avantis forums..
    I’m going to see if I can deep dive more on an avantis..
    despite my preference for physical knobs and buttons, the avantis looks like a clever implementation indeed.. very flexible, very powerful, and have mire than enough processing for anything you could throw at it (unless you have very high channel counts, more than 64, which I honestly don’t.

    A&H have the dLive C1500 if you want a smaller form factor.. since several years..
    but you’ll need a cdm32 (or a dm0 with a dx32)..

    A mini Avantis will be a very nice thing imho..
    I’d love to see 16 faders though.. with the last 4 blockable like the second screen of the Avantis.. and that might be difficult to see, looking at how the Avantis is built. But who knows, maybe there’s a way..

    If I mix the same band on tour I can live with 12 faders, with some tricks..
    but doing a festival with several band will not be very comfy..
    for that you need a decent amount of faders.. (at least imho and for my workflow).

    I’m currently debating if getting an Avantis btw..
    it’s not as light and “compact” as I’d like.. but maybe it’s a compromise I have to accept..
    also I’m not sure if it sounds the same on the sum as a dLive, looks like a very nice console though..
    would like to know if the Avantis also has the nice compression charachteristics of the dLive (if desired).

    howdy

    Cheu

    #114300
    Profile photo of Hugh
    Hugh
    Participant

    Cheu, When I narrow down the most important features I need in a mini Avantis, an optional internal I/O and converter up-grade is at the top of the list: DX168 elements or the 32bit 96K Primes both offer significant sonic improvements over the existing SQ I/Os. 8 internal “Prime I/O money channels” and 2 DX168s providing 32 D-Live pres would be many more inputs than I will ever need. I am very pleased with the size of the SQ5 footprint however several of the Avantis features, specifically the improved large screen and rotary controls, would probably require a more powerful core processor. Given the fact that I seldom need more than 8 active XLR inputs with the ensembles that I work with, 8 faders with 6 layers would certainly meet my needs.
    The specific target market that I an zeroing in on is the small channel count, discriminating sonic quality capture needs of most all deca applications as well as most all high end acoustic Americana ensembles. These are endeavors where detailed transparency are much sought after and given the fact that A&H is in a unique position to offer these audio tools within their existing production technology, it should be pretty much a no brainer. The current trend toward DIY recording and performance is absolutely where the Mini Avantis could be a financial home run.
    Hugh

    #114314
    Profile photo of cheu78
    cheu78
    Participant

    I knew your needs.. 🙂
    it might indeed be a market out there, probably the one yamaha is trying to cover, with their new (overpriced) small dm3 proposal..

    a mini Avantis could be a great thing..

    we’ll see what A&H does..

    howdy

    Cheu

    #114342
    Profile photo of Hugh
    Hugh
    Participant

    Cheu, Both version of the Yamaha DM3 belong in a comparative shoot out with some of the Behringer entry level desks. They are not in the same zip code with any of the A&H desks that have world class FPGA XCIV core processing capability (SQ, Avantis & D-Live): other that the ultra small footprint, nothing is significant about the DM3. This is the basis for my assertion of the unique market position A&H now has to capture a lion’s share of the high end, small channel count desk market. An eight fader, six layer version with optional D-Live or Prime I/Os would literally have no market competition, but the window of opportunity for this type of market dominance is rare in the audio industry and should not be put on a planning back burner.
    Hugh

    #114375
    Profile photo of cheu78
    cheu78
    Participant

    Totally agree with you Hugh!
    My point was that Yamaha is exploring that smallformat market (even if they obviously are not comparable to the dLive from a quality point of view)..

    A&H should take that opportunity and lead that market..
    not limiting the console processing and quality, only because it’s portable.

    🙂

    Cheu

    #114426
    Profile photo of nottooloud
    nottooloud
    Participant

    Well, will you settle for an A&H XAir?

    CQ

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