What Benefit Are The DCAs?

Forums Forums SQ Forums SQ general discussions What Benefit Are The DCAs?

This topic contains 9 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Brian Brian 5 months ago.

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #96961
    Profile photo of tourtelot
    tourtelot
    Participant

    Please indulge an old-fart analog guy. On my SQ6 (which I am over-the-moon about), would a few jump in with some examples of how they use the DCAs? Practical, on-the-job examples? I am clear about how I use the Group mixes, just like I always have. But there must be benefits to using the DCAs. I just haven’t been able to wrap my head around what benefits they might provide.

    D.

    #96962
    Profile photo of Søren Steinmetz
    Søren Steinmetz
    Participant

    The DCA are the digital version of the good old analog VCA.

    In musicals I use them to have 8 “focus” faders, thet change from scene to scene and at times during a song.

    Example:
    1. song
    DCA 1+2 the 2 lead act vocals, DCA 3+4 a pair of other vocals, DCA 7 the onstage ensemble and DCA 8 the backstage emsemble

    2. song
    DCA 1-2 still the lead act vocals, DCA 3+4 a different pair of vocals, DCA 5 a speaking role making a voice over, and the DCA 7+8 stays as in 1. song

    Simple example, but it keeps my primary faders in the same place most of the show.

    Some use them to control the overall drum level but that approach is not one I have used for now, only one show I had the entire orchestra on a DCA to lower during a specific voiceover + to make a fake “let’s fade in the playback” 😉

    #96963
    Profile photo of tourtelot
    tourtelot
    Participant

    Thanks Soren-

    Why wouldn’t assigning the orchestra to a group fader be just as useful?

    Again, sorry if I’m just “lost in the woods”.

    D.

    #96965
    Profile photo of Andre S
    Andre S
    Participant

    Hi tourtelot,

    a DCA (Digital Controlled Amplifier) is simply a remote controller for one or multiple faders. On an analog board they are called VCA (voltage-controlled amplifier).

    You can assign Inputfaders, FX send and return, subgroups and outputfaders to a DCA Group. The number of subgroups is limited, because of the processing that can be done in a subgroup. A question of DSP horsepower. Since there is no processing in DCA groups, the manufacturer can give you extra controllers.

    Example:
    You set up SQs 12 mixes as 7 monitors and 5 subgroups. You could have subgroups for Drums, Gtrs, Vox, Keys, Strings. Now you could Assign all instrument groups to one DCA, the Vox group to a second DCA.
    Or you want to controll the Bass (maybe with MIc and DI) with another DCA, because all available groups are already assigned. And now there is the percussionplayer with three more mics. Again, you could use another DCA Group.

    A very clever feature is DCA Spill. That function spills out all the inputs of a DCA group on a faderlayer.

    Hope that helps a bit.
    Cheers,
    André

    #96966
    Profile photo of Andre S
    Andre S
    Participant

    Oh, I was way to slow.

    Yes, you could assign the orchestra to a group. But maybe there are no groups left. So, you can use DCAs instead.

    #96967
    Profile photo of tourtelot
    tourtelot
    Participant

    Ah, that helps.

    D.

    #96969
    Profile photo of Søren Steinmetz
    Søren Steinmetz
    Participant

    Ahhh right Andre

    I have used it when having rotary speakers with 3 mics, and when dual mic on a guitar amp.
    *blames these times of no shows for his forgetfulness*

    #97039
    Profile photo of tourtelot
    tourtelot
    Participant

    Yes. Good stuff. I also just figured out the DCA Spill. *blames being slow for my being slow*

    D.

    #97223
    Profile photo of blue439
    blue439
    Participant

    You can do the Dave Rat thing where, for example, he might assign all the individual drum channels to a DCA. With a comp on the drum group, if he wants a more compressed drum sound, he raises the drum channels DCA, driving the drums into compression. If he wants a more dynamic drum sound, he lowers the DCA so the drums drop out of compression. To maintain the same volume, he lowers the group while he raises the drum DCA, and raises the group when he lowers the drum DCA.

    #97227
    Profile photo of Brian
    Brian
    Participant

    A DCA has no audio routing/processing to it. It is simply a “remote volume” control. Groups on the other hand do actually route signal flow through the group so that you can modify it (eq, compression, inserts, etc).

    If you are simply looking for a way to control volume, either will work equally well (although the DCA mute will mute each channel while the group mute only mutes the group). Groups will use up your busses on the board however, so DCAs are probably a better option when you are simply trying to have a remote volume fader.

    If you want to process the channels together (eq, compression, inserts, etc), then a group is your best option.

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.