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Tracking with a API 1608 Utility Plugins
Old 30th May 2017
  #1
Here for the gear
 

Tracking with a API 1608

Hello,

I'm going to be in a studio this week tracking with a API 1608. From what I've read, this console does NOT have a separate "Tape-Output" pot, so your channel fader is what feeds to tape/DAW. I'm assuming this means I need to make sure I'm getting good signal in Pro Tools without clipping, meaning I can't really "mix" much with the faders.

Is the preferred method with this console to return the tracks from Pro Tools back onto another channel on the desk, for mixing and for monitoring for the drummer?

Just wanted to grab peoples thoughts on this...
Old 30th May 2017
  #2
Gear Maniac
 

Preamp Output to DAW Input – DAW Output to Equalizer Input:
 Input Path: Preamp Only
 Return Path: EQ, Insert, Fader, Filter, Panning, Output Assignments, Echo/Aux Sends
Insert Send (EQ Output) to DAW Input – DAW Output to Insert Return (Fader Input):
 Input Path: Preamp and EQ
 Return Path: Fader, Filter, Panning, Output Assignments, Echo/Aux Sends
Old 30th May 2017
  #3
Gear Head
 
deethe's Avatar
i think its more like you don't "track" with the faders but you do use the faders on mixback and summing to adjust the DAW levels to the groups.

the routing on the 1608 looks well designed for returning the DAW signal back thru the same record channel for mixdown. the "tape-out" pot would be the gain knob after your signal to the DAW has been calibrated in the computer trims
Old 30th May 2017
  #4
Here for the gear
 

Unfortunately the studio doesn't have the console setup in this manner, and I don't want to spend hours reconfiguring. They have nothing patched on the Preamp Output unfortunately, its just normalized to the EQ.... so they only place I can pull signal is at the end of the strip, next to the Direct Output.
Old 30th May 2017
  #5
Gear Head
 
deethe's Avatar
post fader sends to the DAW giving access to the channel eq and fader gain

your don't want to track with the fader at unity, the eq out and then mixback with the eq and fader into the same track as a comp take?
Old 30th May 2017
  #6
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Well, I was hoping to be able to actually use the mix faders on the console to get my mix down started... since right now I'm going to have to leave them at unity to get the level right into the DAW...

so my best option is to return the audio back down other channels on the console and use half the console for "recording" and half the console for "mixing".

Like I don't want to mix on the "inputs" because if I bring something too low, then the direct output will be hitting Pro tools in the noise floor.
Old 30th May 2017
  #7
Gear Head
 
deethe's Avatar
idk, sounds like youre trying to travel into the future "mixing" during the take, but i might misunderstand the traditional analog multitracking room which maybe had 2x8 channel decks, one for tracking and then another for mixing back.

laying down a scratch vocal then wanting to record a lead vocal thru the same channel strip would have me moving either the scratch track or the new vocal onto another DAW track and then console return input channel.
Old 30th May 2017
  #8
Quote:
Originally Posted by famerdave View Post
Well, I was hoping to be able to actually use the mix faders on the console to get my mix down started... since right now I'm going to have to leave them at unity to get the level right into the DAW...

so my best option is to return the audio back down other channels on the console and use half the console for "recording" and half the console for "mixing".

Like I don't want to mix on the "inputs" because if I bring something too low, then the direct output will be hitting Pro tools in the noise floor.
Unless you are going to mix on the console anyway, your first paragraph doesn't make a great deal of sense to me. If you are going to mix on the console you need to re-configure it (or work with a very limited output count.)

When tracking I use the faders to get the right output to protools (remembering green is the new amber) and then return from protools to a pair of channels on the desk and get a rough mix going in protools. If you do have extra time on the desk after tracking has ended you can then just change the PT outputs to spread the mix across the desk.

If you wanted to mix direct to two tracks while you track you almost certainly need to re-patch the desk from its current configuration.
Old 31st May 2017
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
Unless you are going to mix on the console anyway, your first paragraph doesn't make a great deal of sense to me. If you are going to mix on the console you need to re-configure it (or work with a very limited output count.)

When tracking I use the faders to get the right output to protools (remembering green is the new amber) and then return from protools to a pair of channels on the desk and get a rough mix going in protools. If you do have extra time on the desk after tracking has ended you can then just change the PT outputs to spread the mix across the desk.

If you wanted to mix direct to two tracks while you track you almost certainly need to re-patch the desk from its current configuration.

Ok - so when tracking, what are you normally monitoring in the control room? Just the Pro Tools returns? Or do you monitor the inputs, all at the level they are being sent to Pro Tools. For example, when tracking, I defiantly don't wanna listen to a hi-hat mic or a room mic at full volume.
Old 31st May 2017
  #10
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andersmv's Avatar
 

Unless you have a console with a small fader to where you can set something weird up, you'll want to send DAW channels to different faders. My biggest concern would be in regards to how they have their cue system set up, that usually determines how I set sessions up on a large format console. Am I going to have to mix a stereo cue off the board for the artist? Is there something like an Aviom where I'm going to have to do multiple sends through the DAW as opposed to the board? Is the session starting from scratch or are we overdubbing from a previous session? I like to move fast, so most of the time I just send the DAW outs to a pair of faders, that way I have a stereo track that's already premixed to send to people and not have to futz around with sending multiple stems to the console channels and then adjusting a new mix off multiple channels on the console.
Old 31st May 2017
  #11
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daniel c's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by famerdave View Post
Ok - so when tracking, what are you normally monitoring in the control room? Just the Pro Tools returns? Or do you monitor the inputs, all at the level they are being sent to Pro Tools. For example, when tracking, I defiantly don't wanna listen to a hi-hat mic or a room mic at full volume.
Here's how API suggests setting up a tracking session with a 1608:
  • Your microphone channel faders shouldn't be routed to the mix bus.
  • These channel fader direct outputs are patched into your DAW inputs.
  • You create a stereo monitor mix in your DAW (using a mouse or control surface) and patch it into a pair of the echo returns in the centre section, or a pair of unused channels.
  • These returns or channels are routed to the mix bus, and you have the auxiliary sends for cue mixes.
  • If you do use the echo returns (or if you have enough spare channels) you could do 4 stereo stem mixes from your DAW. e.g. Drums, bass and guitars, vocals, effects.

If the console has P-Mix automation you should be able to mix in your DAW using the faders on the console. There is a unity gain bypass applied to the channel audio path when you do this. That's the theory anyway.

Last edited by daniel c; 31st May 2017 at 05:48 AM..
Old 31st May 2017
  #12
Quote:
Originally Posted by daniel c View Post
Here's how API suggests setting up a tracking session with a 1608:
  • Your microphone channel faders shouldn't be routed to the mix bus.
  • These channel fader direct outputs are patched into your DAW inputs.
  • You create a stereo monitor mix in your DAW (using a mouse or control surface) and patch it into a pair of the echo returns in the centre section, or a pair of unused channels.
  • These returns or channels are routed to the mix bus, and you have the auxiliary sends for cue mixes.
  • If you do use the echo returns (or if you have enough spare channels) you could do 4 stereo stem mixes from your DAW. e.g. Drums, bass and guitars, vocals, effects.

If the console has P-Mix automation you should be able to mix in your DAW using the faders on the console. There is a unity gain bypass applied to the channel audio path when you do this. That's the theory anyway.
This desk is incredibly flexible and there are multiple ways to achieve a similar end. I use a hearback system for cue mixes which hangs off the bussing systems
Old 31st May 2017
  #13
Quote:
Originally Posted by famerdave View Post
Ok - so when tracking, what are you normally monitoring in the control room? Just the Pro Tools returns? Or do you monitor the inputs, all at the level they are being sent to Pro Tools. For example, when tracking, I defiantly don't wanna listen to a hi-hat mic or a room mic at full volume.
I return from protools to a crane song avocet but you could just as easily come back either to a pair of channels on the board or, as suggested below, to a pair of aux returns which you monitor from PT. You don't have to listen to the hihat or room mic. Just any fader you don't wanna hear in the daw once you have got the sounds you want and get a rough mix going right there in the daw.
Old 1st June 2017
  #14
Gear Guru
 
RoundBadge's Avatar
hire a good engineer and focus on the music.
worry about capturing the performance..not the mix.
just bring a couple PT ch's back into the 1608 for a decent cue mix and monitor that.
Old 2nd June 2017
  #15
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by daniel c View Post
Here's how API suggests setting up a tracking session with a 1608:
  • Your microphone channel faders shouldn't be routed to the mix bus.
  • These channel fader direct outputs are patched into your DAW inputs.
  • You create a stereo monitor mix in your DAW (using a mouse or control surface) and patch it into a pair of the echo returns in the centre section, or a pair of unused channels.
  • These returns or channels are routed to the mix bus, and you have the auxiliary sends for cue mixes.
  • If you do use the echo returns (or if you have enough spare channels) you could do 4 stereo stem mixes from your DAW. e.g. Drums, bass and guitars, vocals, effects.

If the console has P-Mix automation you should be able to mix in your DAW using the faders on the console. There is a unity gain bypass applied to the channel audio path when you do this. That's the theory anyway.
Wouldn't this setup have a monitoring latency problem? Why not just use the cue sends from the mic inputs, rather than the PT returns?

I'm not implying this is wrong, just wondering if I understand this right..
Old 2nd June 2017
  #16
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daniel c's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisbramble View Post
Wouldn't this setup have a monitoring latency problem? Why not just use the cue sends from the mic inputs, rather than the PT returns?

I'm not implying this is wrong, just wondering if I understand this right..
Valid question

The short answer is that I've just assumed that most 1608 users have Pro Tools HD of some variety, so latency through the system isn't an issue.

The long answer can be a can of worms, so I might leave that for others to hash out. You can find many discussions here on GS about latency, low latency mixers, why the cue sends are sourced from the returns, or not, etc.
Old 2nd June 2017
  #17
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DirkB's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by daniel c View Post
Valid question

The short answer is that I've just assumed that most 1608 users have Pro Tools HD of some variety, so latency through the system isn't an issue.

The long answer can be a can of worms, so I might leave that for others to hash out. You can find many discussions here on GS about latency, low latency mixers, why the cue sends are sourced from the returns, or not, etc.
Hmm, one of the key things of a real LFAC is to not have to worry about latency.
I'm not really familiar with the API, but why not use the workflow as you suggested, but with the analog sends to create a cue mix? If the CR mix has some minor latency, that should not be of any issue.

For the actual recorded musician, I avoid any digital latency, some people are so sensitive to it.

Best of luck,
Dirk
Old 5th June 2017
  #18
Gear Guru
 
Drumsound's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisbramble View Post
Wouldn't this setup have a monitoring latency problem? Why not just use the cue sends from the mic inputs, rather than the PT returns?

I'm not implying this is wrong, just wondering if I understand this right..

Quote:
Originally Posted by DirkB View Post
Hmm, one of the key things of a real LFAC is to not have to worry about latency.
I'm not really familiar with the API, but why not use the workflow as you suggested, but with the analog sends to create a cue mix? If the CR mix has some minor latency, that should not be of any issue.

For the actual recorded musician, I avoid any digital latency, some people are so sensitive to it.

Best of luck,
Dirk
I prefer to send cue mix off the mic inputs so there is no latency.
Old 5th June 2017
  #19
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daniel c's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by DirkB View Post
Hmm, one of the key things of a real LFAC is to not have to worry about latency.
I'm not really familiar with the API, but why not use the workflow as you suggested, but with the analog sends to create a cue mix? If the CR mix has some minor latency, that should not be of any issue.

For the actual recorded musician, I avoid any digital latency, some people are so sensitive to it.

Best of luck,
Dirk
Sure, as Trev said in post 12, it's a very flexible console, so you can work any way you like. It really comes down to your personal choice of workflow.
Old 18th June 2017
  #20
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
I return from protools to a crane song avocet but you could just as easily come back either to a pair of channels on the board or, as suggested below, to a pair of aux returns which you monitor from PT. You don't have to listen to the hihat or room mic. Just any fader you don't wanna hear in the daw once you have got the sounds you want and get a rough mix going right there in the daw.
Trev ,I also have a api 1608 ,how is having a crane song beneficial to you?Are you using the analog ins or the digital ins on the crane song? I also have a hearback system and I use the busses on the console for the talent,how do set up a mix for the talent?Or do you just use the echo sends ?

Last edited by johnnyz; 18th June 2017 at 01:26 PM..
Old 18th June 2017
  #21
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyz View Post
Trev ,I also have a api 1608 ,how is having a crane song beneficial to you?Are you using the analog ins or the digital ins on the crane song? I also have a hearback system and I use the busses on the console for the talent,how do set up a mix for the talent?Or do you just use the echo sends ?
It lives on my mixbus because I like what it imparts. After messing about with different routing to and from it I settled on analog in and out of it.

Hearback hangs off the busses. All I have to do is hit no 8 and tell the bass player he is on 8 and he can mix his foldback himself from there.
Old 19th June 2017
  #22
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
It lives on my mixbus because I like what it imparts. After messing about with different routing to and from it I settled on analog in and out of it.

Hearback hangs off the busses. All I have to do is hit no 8 and tell the bass player he is on 8 and he can mix his foldback himself from there.
So the master out of the 1608 comes into the input of the crane song,and do use the talkback on the crane song or the 1608?, and output of the crane song goes back to protools,sorry if is a dumb question
Old 19th June 2017
  #23
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyz View Post
So the master out of the 1608 comes into the input of the crane song,and do use the talkback on the crane song or the 1608?, and output of the crane song goes back to protools,sorry if is a dumb question
Sorry. Talking at cross purposes. I was talking about the HEDD in that post.

Re the avocet, yes I come digitally out of PT into the AVOCET.
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