Why do FX busses exist?

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This topic contains 17 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Chris Chris 1 week, 1 day ago.

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  • #110735
    Profile photo of RuneS
    RuneS
    Participant

    Why do FX busses exist? And since they exist, why do they not have any processing(or just an EQ)?
    I personally only need low/hi pass on my fx busses, but a colleague asked how you could EQ the fx send instead of the return. I told him that you couldn’t, but it made me realize that I might as well use stereo auxes for fx since it takes up the same amount of mixes, but allows for processing etc.

    #110740
    Profile photo of Ernesto
    Ernesto
    Participant

    The FX return buss has a 4 channel parametric included….

    #110741
    Profile photo of RuneS
    RuneS
    Participant

    If you read my post again you will see that I’m talking about the fx busses, not the return channels. There is no such thing as a ‘fx return busses’ btw. Those are input channels.

    #110787
    Profile photo of Chris
    Chris
    Participant

    You are correct, the return is an input channel. I think you are getting hung up on nomenclature. It is not an FX Bus, it is an FX Send bus. It does not function and is not just a Bus. That is why it is defined separately in the Mixer Config.

    The FX is applied and defined on that send. You could also look at it similar to an outboard insert. You can’t EQ an insert send to go outboard on any board that I am aware of (I’m not saying it doesn’t exist).

    If you wanted to pre-EQ your send you would have to incorporate a bus, aux, etc… and then send that to the FX send. Or some FX have a hi/low cut, or the FX Return exists to do your EQ/cutting.

    #110845
    Profile photo of Lishinsky
    Lishinsky
    Participant

    You can also use Aux Busses instead of FX sends!
    and there is no need to use stereo buss to generate a stereo effect as long as the return is stereo.

    #110847
    Profile photo of RuneS
    RuneS
    Participant

    Chris, I don’t mean to be rude but I think you are confused about some basic concepts. (the whole send bus vs bus thing isn’t a thing) A bus, is a bus, is a bus.

    On dLive you have two types of auxes that can perform the ‘exact’ same task. If you use an ‘aux’ you have full processing on your fx bus. In this scenario you can eq what goes into your effects (like ducking frequencies to further de-ess what goes into a reverb etc.). If you use the ‘fx aux’ you have no processing.

    There is ‘no’ reason not to use ‘auxes’ for the FX, and there is ‘no’ reason why there shouldn’t be full processing on the ‘fx auxes’. So…why do ‘fx auxes’ exist since it is just a gimped aux?

    #110848
    Profile photo of RS
    RS
    Participant

    I can only speculate here:
    I think the FX engine is a leftover of the iLive era. Why do I think so? To me it’s the exact same effects, quality and feature wise. I do believe it is still the same chip that sits now inside dLive, although I have never opened it up.
    The easiest way for A&H to implement it to the new platform, was to take it “as is”. This to me is the reason we still have FX busses. Otherwise they would have had to re-program everything into the FPGA. Maybe it was too expensive or time consuming, or would have reduced the possibilities dLive is offering (bus count, etc). So probably more a marketing/money decision.

    But as always in these things, only A&H could shed some light on this and I doubt they will…

    #110849
    Profile photo of RS
    RS
    Participant

    And as a addition to my last post:
    Having this old structure gives us some benefits that otherwise might not be there:
    mixing a bus into a FX is one that comes to mind and is highly appreciated by me!!!

    #110850
    Profile photo of dcongdon
    dcongdon
    Participant

    Onboard FX bus and FX return options exist for users who may need higher channel counts (think of a shared surface setup with 64 inputs each) AND your fx processing is a lower priority (think volunteer engineers or corporate).

    For more advanced setups, it doesn’t make a lot of sense to use the onboard FX routing. I typically use a handful of stereo and mono aux bus sends + corresponding stereo input channels to route fx.

    This also works really well with outboard FX (Waves/hardware). You can send the aux bus to the onboard FX as well as outboard processing. Then setup your stereo returns with ABCD preamp selection with Source A fed from outboard and Source B from the onboard backup. Create a scene to change between those sources and you have a good redundant system.

    #110854
    Profile photo of Wolfgang
    Wolfgang
    Participant

    Why didn’t I come up with this idea with Source A and Source B myself?
    Thank you! 😉

    #110855
    Profile photo of Wolfgang
    Wolfgang
    Participant

    By the way, I see only one advantage in the FX bus structure:
    If you have the effect in an FX bus, you can get it on the screen very quickly with the SEL button.
    If it’s in an aux, you can’t do that, you have to use the FX button and select the effect you want.

    #110860
    Profile photo of RuneS
    RuneS
    Participant

    RS: Regarding the FX engine being a leftover from iLive, you are correct. And yes, it still has that DSP. It would however not have required much development to have used normal auxes for fx. It would basically just have been a default show file and removing any mention of fx auxes. But yeah, they probably had a reason or at least a specific philosophy that they wanted to stick to.

    dcongdon: You can still use the FX returns when using normal auxes, meaning you will have the exact same channel and bus count regardless of whether you use ‘fx auxes’ or just ‘auxes’. The only difference is that you get less processing options with the ‘fx auxes’. They don’t really serve any purpose other than limiting you ability to process effects.
    However, as Wolfgang said, using stereo channels and source switching is really clever for Waves/Live Professor redundancy on shows where you have additional unused channels. I have a few colleagues that will definately like that idea.

    Wolfgang: Yeah, thats one of the two issues I have with it. That, and the fact that reconfiguring the bus structure seems more intuitive when you seperate the two bus types. Thats however just a question of how the bus is ‘tagged’ and not a function of the bus itself. As long as I have my fx starting from stereo aux 1 I can work around it though.

    #110884
    Profile photo of Chris
    Chris
    Participant

    RS, sorry for the delayed response but I normally only look at the forums about once a week. If you say you don’t want to be rude, then don’t. You came on here asking a simple question and you got your answer. You are swinging at everyone telling you this is how it is. If you don’t like it, put in a request on the Feature Suggestions forum and someone may see it and change the whole design philosophy for one person’s misunderstanding of the design. Again, you are hung up on the nomenclature because the FX send does not work the way YOU think it should. For the record, I don’t disagree with your thinking. With a digital board, anything should be possible. This is just how they designed it.

    #110887
    Profile photo of Jgrift
    Jgrift
    Participant

    I assume they did this for setup speed. You just say how many you want. It patches it for you. And like most things on the dlive if you don’t like it that way do it the old way and use an aux. at least it gives you the flexibility.

    #110889
    Profile photo of Chris
    Chris
    Participant

    Just realized that my last comment was directed at RuneS not RS. Apologies to RS

    “(the whole send bus vs bus thing isn’t a thing) A bus, is a bus, is a bus.”

    According to the manual:

    Mix->Return patches the FX device as a system effect with a Send bus and a
    dedicated stereo FX Return channel. Select the bus you want the FX to use and press
    Apply to confirm. The source patch defaults to the corresponding FX Send bus if
    available in the current bus configuration. The output patch defaults to the dedicated
    stereo FX Return channel. You can reassign an FX output to a different Input channel
    using the Processing / Preamp screen of such channel.

    In the Allen and Heath dlive world, it is a thing. I’m not arguing for every other setup in the world. You asked the question in the dlive forums, “Why do FX busses exist? And since they exist, why do they not have any processing(or just an EQ)?”, and you got your answer. The issue here really is nomenclature. Using your argument, the FX Send bus would therefore not actually be a bus, since a bus is a bus, etc… Unfortunately, that is what they named it. There is no need to insult others by assuming their knowledge or accusing others being “confused about some basic concepts”.

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