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NAB: Console Wars v 2.0

It’s the quick version but this is v2. Not only are we putting this on a brand spankin’ new version of the SPL site but we have added our own video for Avid and DiGiCo and stripped out the “official” ones. One second thought, maybe we’ll keep the officials and just add the ones we shot at NAB.

 

When we posted this a few days ago, we said that Console Wars are back in a big way. Interestingly, two console companies who were not originally included sent almost immediate emails asking why not–which leads to the usual discussions of the finite nature of time. So we are adding at least some links for them. So there is a ton here that was not here when we first posted.

 

We’ll do this alphabetically…

 

Avid. A whole new system. We got that 20mins+ of Mr. Scovill walking us through everything edited down to about 15 mins. And it really does take that long to go through. This is the biggest change Avid has made to their Live Sound systems in a decade.

 

 

And, here is their official video in case you missed it.

 

 

DiGiCo. While everyone else was going—or getting ready to go—bigger, they were once again going against the tide with the new S21. Again, we have the full deal with Matt Larson.

 

And here is the movie trailer. Really. It’s the sound guy version of a Star Wars teaser…

 

 

Now the ones not included first time around.

 

Roland unleashed the M-5000. It’s based on a new platform that they call OHRCA. (Open. High Resolution. Configurable Architecture) As is becoming the norm, the keywords here are “not fixed” and “user definable.”  The idea is to allow the operator to essentially “build” a console structure to suit the needs of the application. Instead of input and output channels we have freely assignable  audio paths that can be used for mixing channels, AUXs, Matrices, subgroup buses, MIX-MINUS buses, and other input/output configurations within a range of up to 128 on the M-5000. You can check out their very hip web site on the console here.

 

SSL has updated the L500 and it is now called the L500 Plus. You can read all about it here.

 

(With all of this talk of “user definable” and “open configuration” and “anything can be anything you want it to be” I am brought to mind of a blog that the aforementioned Mr. Scovill wrote for us some time back about something called Choice Fatigue. It’s a real thing. And it is coming to an audio console near you…

 

Finally, Yamaha. Still a lot of talk about the coming Rivage PM10 which will be the long-awaited replacement to the still out there on a bunch of big tours PM1D/. All we know is that they are saying it will be out in this calendar year and if you are a fan of the stuff Yamaha has been partnering on with Rupert Neve, you are gonna LOVE this. If we say anymore someone will show up to have us killed…

 

But there was new console stuff actually at the show. Version 3.0 for the Yamaha CL and QL Digital Audio Consoles is ready for download In addition the fifth major update to the StageMix App for iPad was released simultaneously. With the expanded CL/QL V3.0 feature set and the capabilities provided by StageMix V5.0 a sweeping spectrum of applications, from live sound to broadcast relay and recording at venues from the grandest to the most compact, will benefit from significantly enhanced convenience and flexibility.

 

Additional CL/QL V3.0 Features not previously announced include User Defined Knobs can now be assigned to control reverb, time, delay time, and other effect parameters providing direct, quick access to effect parameters that could previously only be accessed by calling up the effect screen. With V3.0, it is now possible to set up patching and SRC for the RMio64-D Dante/MADI conversion I/O rack unit from the CL/QL V3.0 display Channel Link. Previously only available at the inputs, it is now available at the channel outputs as well.

 

With CL/QL V3.0, the EQ and dynamics settings on multiple buses can be linked to significantly reduce setup time. Two internal oscillators can now be set to different frequencies for the odd and even numbered channels; an advantage for L/R line checks.

 

 

V3.0 features also include the ability to convert signals received at a stereo channel into mono with a single action. L-MONO coverts the odd-numbered channel to mono, R-MONO converts the even-numbered channel to mono, and LR-MONO mixes both channels and converts to mono; all functions can be executed with just one touch. Send levels for all channels are now visible in the METER display when SENDS ON FADERS is engaged. Also, CL and QL consoles can now be set to Preferred Master directly from V3.0 display without the need for Dante Controller. When Preferred Master is engaged, the device becomes the Dante network clock master.

 

New StageMix V5.0 features common to CL, QL, M7CL and LS9, include a 61-band real time analyzer that receives input from the built-in iPad microphone is now included. This function is integrated with the PEQ/GEQ displays, allowing a sound engineer to move around the stage while checking for problem frequencies at various locations, and use PEQ or GEQ to make appropriate adjustments on the spot. With V5.0, it is now possible to adjust the send level from the SENDS ON FADERS button to the MATRIX when the Mix block is selected in the Navigation/Meter Bridge. And with support for dB display in the Mixer window, Fader scales can now be displayed in the Mixer window, allowing easy visual confirmation of fader positions.

 

StageMix V5.0 features for CL and QL include support for multiple iPad connections (previous versions only allowed one device to be connected at a time). V5.0 allows up to five devices to be connected simultaneously enabling musicians to simultaneously use SENDS ON FADERS to set up their personal monitor balances. Control for the new 8-band PEQ feature included in the CL/QL V3.0 update is provided. This includes a notch filter and HPF/LPF as well.

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Bill Evans

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