Alright, some of you may remember that a while ago I asked for advice what next to buy for my drum studio and Wahler (and others) suggested I should invest in a preamp. Which I did. I went for UA 4-710d, the twin finity. Now, it being a 4 mic pre (currently running my kick out, snare top, and overheads through it) I noticed the send and return on the back of it, for every of the four channels.
So I was wondering, could I use the preamp as external gear (or basically as an external plugin) so I could for example utilize the preamp on a single track, bus, or a master bus, inside daw, that is studio one?
If yes, how would all this patching be done with the SL32sc, the preamp and the studio one?
And finally, if yes to all, is this something worth the effort?
Those send/returns are for fitting the preamps with e.g. compressors.
If you want to use the preamps as outboard plug-in in S1 then use the line-in/line out connections. It may give some colouring to the sound so by all means try it. But it will also give you a headache or two regarding latency and printing mixdowns.
All line inputs and outputs are balanced, but you don't have to use balanced cables. Nothing will break when you use mono jacks. A few things to be aware of:
- in most cases balanced connections (especially if they are long) means less noise
- 'mono' cables often use instrument cable, which is not a good cable for line connections
- short mono patch cables should be fine.
"Pipeline XT" has always been the way to do this, now "Interface Mode" is another option and sometimes a better solution. Using the Series III mixer in Interface Mode means that all available mix outputs (not Main L/R) receive their signals directly from the DAW. The technical realization is very similar to how you would send cue mixes to the outputs, meaning that USB sends 39-54 are used to "transport" the DAW signals. This is the routing:
Output 1 = USB 39
Output 2 = USB 40
Output 3 = USB 41
Output 4 = USB 42
Output 5 = USB 43
Output 6 = USB 44
Output 7 = USB 45
Output 8 = USB 46
Output 9 = USB 47
Output 10 = USB 48
Output 11 = USB 49
Output 12 = USB 50
Output 13 = USB 51
Output 14 = USB 52
Output 15 = USB 53
Output 16 = USB 54
You can literally route ANY signal of the DAW to the outputs, the processed signal is then returned to an input channel of the mixer and sent to the DAW. The interesting thing here is that you can switch individual mix outputs back to normal mode (aux, matrix, subgroup), so you can run Interface Mode and flex mix mode simultaneously. If there is not more in use than the four signals to the new preamp, then you can use the remaining mixes as aux/monitor/in-ear mixes or as subgroups.
Studio One has a "StudioLive 32 Interface Mode" song template ("32 channels and 8 stereo Cue Mixes"), which can be used for Interface Mode. The problem is that this template is using stereo tracks as returns, which is useful for cue mixes, but not necessarily for Interface Mode. But you can easily replace the stereo tracks by mono tracks and store this setting as an own song template.
damirvukelic1 wroteRegarding latency, seems llke it has been pretty much dealt with the pipeline plugin in studio one?
Yes, pipeline can compensate, which may add to total latency. You won't notice that when you use pipeline in post production but you will notice it when using pipeline during live recording.
Thanks for both of your replies.
Well my initial thought is this:
I would use the preamp on 4 mics to record a session (mics running through preamp would be kick out, snare top, and 2 overheads).
Then after I recorded what I wanted into studio one. I'd work on the mix. And at that time I'd like to utilize the preamp some more. Whether it was on the same four, now tracks, or maybe try to use it as a "plugin" through pipeline for, for example room mics, or maybe toms, it does not matter. I basically wanted to add more character of the tube, or saturation further on in the process of working on the song.
Now in that respect, and having in mind that this preamp is currently the only outboard gear that I have, what would be the better way to go? Using interface mode on the mixer or simply use mixer as a tool that sends and returns signals from the preamp and back to the daw with pipeline?
In post production all you need is inputs and outputs, so in that case interface mode removes the bother of setting up input-to-output mixes in the mixer. But if you don't mind or even enjoy fiddling with the mixer then by all means use the mixer in normal mode.
It's during live recording where the mixer in normal mode can really help setting up very low latency mixes to sing and play along to. And it frees S1 and the computer from that task.
And did you have a look at DAW mode? Due to the tight integration with S1 the DAW mode on the mixer allows you to control many elements in S1 including transport, faders and plug-in parameters.
I have to admit, I am clueless. Completely clueless.
I watched some videos on yt about the outboard gear and S1 and SLIII, but all I was able to accomplish is to get some annoying feedback.
I also tried going for interface mode with the mixer, but from there I wasn't even able to get feedback from the outboard.
So, please help.
Let's say I have signal from the preamp coming into input 15 on the mixer. And that is routed into channel 2 in the mixer (as snare drum). I also have mix output 7 going into the preamp as line in.
I have an ongoing session in studio one, where snare drum has been recorded into channel 2 from input 2.
How do I run this snare track into the preamp and back. Going crazy...
It will take some time to learn how to handle of these things, so it might make more sense to just get things going. Forget Pipeline XT, forget Interface Mode, forget DAW Mode - just do this:
Let's say, snare is track 2 and you have a 1:1 routing of USB inputs and outputs (mixer and DAW), then track 2 will arrive at channel 2 of the StudioLive mixer (input source set to USB). Now select a free aux mix, raise fader 2 and the aux master and connect mix output 2 with your preamp. Return the processed signal to a free input (line input!) and record the signal in your DAW.
This is quite a normal way to send signal from a DAW through the mixer "back" to the DAW and you can do it with any signal, as long as there are aux mixes available...
As for Pipeline there's probably a few things to be aware of:
- In S1 you want exclusive channels for it: An I/O output intended for Pipeline must not map to an S1 output (mix bus) and an I/O input intended for Pipeline must not go to a track. They only go out from and back into that one instance of Pipeline.
- On the hardware side the same applies: The USB output channel from the instance of Pipeline must go straight to and only to the interface output with the preamp’s line input on it, and the interface input with the preamp’s line output on it must go straight to and only to the S1 USB input to that instance of Pipeline. Interface mode is ideal for this 1:1 routing.
- Then use that one instance of Pipeline just like any other software plug-in: Insert it on a track or bus, play your pre-recorded tracks and adjust your preamp while listening to S1’s main output. The one thing you can’t do is copying the instance of Pipeline to other tracks, because it will still be only the one preamp getting all those signals at once. So for 3 more instances you’ll have to set up 3 more pairs of exclusive in/outputs for the other 3 preamps too.
- Using outboard gear this way means that any ‘file writing’ (bouncing, exporting, mixdowns) must take place in realtime, so a 3 minute song will take 3 minutes to export. Just so you know.
wahlerstudios wroteLet's say, snare is track 2 and you have a 1:1 routing of USB inputs and outputs (mixer and DAW), then track 2 will arrive at channel 2 of the StudioLive mixer (input source set to USB). Now select a free aux mix, raise fader 2 and the aux master and connect mix output 2 with your preamp. Return the processed signal to a free input (line input!) and record the signal in your DAW.
Well that is just too simple
But in terms of what I wanted to do here it isn't actually helping me.
I basically wanted to make two passes with the preamp. The 1st pass would be while recording drums, 4 channels (kick, snare, overheads) would go through preamp first, then into the mixer and from there recorded into the S1 session.
Now, the 2nd pass would be (let's say again those 4 tracks) going from S1, into the preamp (now serving as an outboard plugin) and back into the s1.
Contiued after quote below..
SwitchBack wroteAs for Pipeline there's probably a few things to be aware of:
In the meantime I managed to figure it out.
But I ended up with some bad latency issues.
Granted, I did try this with a project that has the complete drumset overloaded with processing and plugins.
I found that output channel 47 corresponds with mixbus 7. And I also loaded a fresh/blank project into which I imported a single .wav file. When I ran pipeline for that single track with no other plugins, I experienced no latency issues.
So, two questions:
1. What can be done to avoid latency issues when there are other things involved (plugins, a lot of files, etc)
2. I got the pipeline to work in "normal" mixer mode, how do I accomplish that in interface mode?
1. I don't know the details of how S1 deals with latency but in theory when S1 knows the exact delay for every plug-in, buffer, interface output, interface input and output-to-input (e.g. for Pipeline) it can shift the tracks and add delay where needed to make sure that things line up correctly at the mixing stages. Overall latency can be high but for post production that's no problem. I can recommend two videos by Gregor, on audio settings and loopback testing. And here’s a video by Joe on audio settings and latency mainly for recording.
2. Interface mode turns most of your mixer into a plain interface with inputs and outputs without the DSP/mixing functionality. Once set you can forget about your mixer and just focus on the settings inside S1. All you need to know here is that USB inputs 1-16 come from mixer inputs 1-16 and that USB outputs 39-48 go straight to Mix outputs 1-10 respectively (for the 32SC). Here’s a link to a knowledge base article on Pipeline with Interface mode.
Hope this helps
Interface Mode uses the USB sends in the range 39-54 (as listed in a previous post). The "normal" USB routing is slightly different, as you have found out already. AVB uses the same routing.
Flex mix 1 = USB 41
Flex mix 2 = USB 42
Flex mix 3 = USB 43
Flex mix 4 = USB 44
Flex mix 5 = USB 45
Flex mix 6 = USB 46
Flex mix 7 = USB 47
Flex mix 8 = USB 48
Flex mix 9 = USB 49
Flex mix 10 = USB 50
Flex mix 11 = USB 51
Flex mix 12 = USB 52
Flex mix 13 = USB 53
Flex mix 14 = USB 54
Flex mix 15 = USB 55
Flex mix 16 = USB 56
SwitchBack wrote1. I don't know the details of how S1 deals with latency but in theory when S1 knows the exact delay for every plug-in, buffer, interface output, interface input and output-to-input (e.g. for Pipeline) it can shift the tracks and add delay where needed to make sure that things line up correctly at the mixing stages. Overall latency can be high but for post production that's no problem. I can recommend two videos by Gregor, on audio settings and loopback testing. And here’s a video by Joe on audio settings and latency mainly for recording.
Alright guys, I am going to try this tonite. If I understood correctly whatever I do in interface mode won't affect the work I have in "normal" mode?
As far as latency is concerned, again, I did click "auto" on pipeline to overcome the latency, however it simply won't work in a full blown session with a bunch of files, plugins involved and whatnot. On the other hand it does work with a single file when no other distractions are involved.
I guess it would be a good thing if we had "priority" plugin settings in S1, so maybe it could help stuff work without hiccups in such situations.
As I said in another post, you can switch single flex mixes back to normal mode. If you only need (example) four direct outputs in Interface Mode, you can use the eight other as aux/matrix/subgroup mixes. I tend to think that in this case the USB routing will be determined by Interface Mode (39-54 instead of 41-56). But this should not really be a "problem". You just have to keep it in mind.
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