Earlier this year, after I had figured out how to create a stable AES50 connection to my Mac Pro for recording solutions, I realized that the communication link that I had working for record and playback into my Mac could also be utilized for inserting plug-ins onto my Midas consoles.
This was nothing new to the world, and as much as it proved to work, didn’t seem like a solution I’d want to use live. Although once the AES50 handshake between the cards and the console had been established the rig worked fine, the Lynx AES16e50 PCIe I/O cards I were using in my system had the potential to create full-blown, in-the-red noise down every channel or not work at all if the proper steps weren’t taken first to confirm proper communication. As much as a recording rig on tour is an important item, if the AES recording rig were to fail, it didn’t have the potential of being a show-stopper.
Based on those issues and the current cost of other solutions at that time, I gave up on pursuing it further, but not until after I had run some testing on Waves Multi-Rack version 8. I had seen that several people were using it live, but I wanted to be able to utilize it for a fair amount of racks with minimal latency and with the 32-bit software at the time, I couldn’t achieve the results I wanted in real time.
Over the last few months, I spent quite a bit of time working with Lynx to help resolve the issues their AES16e50 card was having when used for AES50 I/O. While that was going on, Rev. Bill and Udi Henis of Waves asked me if I’d like to be involved in reviewing the new Waves version 9 software. My reply to them was a question. Would Multi-Rack 9.0 would be operating in 64-bit mode? When the answer to my question came back as a yes, I told them I’d love to and explained my thoughts on integration into Midas digital.
Fortunately at the same time, the stars aligned and a stable version of the drivers for the Lynx AES16e50 card was written in version 12.8. Utilizing a Mac-Mini, the new Lynx un-released beta firmware, and the remarkable Sonnet xMac mini-server chassis, I was finally able to achieve the results I’d been hoping for that weren’t able to be achieved just a few months prior due to the 32-bit system limitations and the lack of cost effective stable hardware.
Details and a look at system latency is in the video. Check it out…