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SuperTrue Automation... Does anyone know the real story? Consoles
Old 8th September 2007
  #1
SuperTrue Automation... Does anyone know the real story?

So does anyone know the deal here? I've heard multiple different stories about ST automation, including one stating that it was ultimately what put AMEK out of business, as they were sued by several studios that owned AMEK desks as it did not work. Is this true?

I've got 2 AMEK desks in the studio I work at and while it isn't the most intuitive automation to use, especially not to ultimation users, it does seem to work just fine. Is this just a large scale example of RTFM??

Also, anyone out here have any tips for ST automation? Right now I'm working it like this:
1.) Rough in a mix.
2.) Turn on every single automation for every parameter that I may even begin to automate and write one pass with out doing any changes.
3.) Make all changes from this point on in update mode.
This seem reasonable?
Thanks,
Jason
Old 8th September 2007
  #2
Lives for gear
 

Hi
Firstly the way you are using Supertrue is fine, perhaps not quite the best way but there are many ways to skin a cat. As long as you select all parameters to be 'recorded' and do a 'write to end' as the first pass (it only needs the time to read the timecode to complete this) then it should be happy.
Supertrue DOES work, there are vastly more automated AMEK desks out there compared to Ultimation or whatever.
Since factory support for Supertrue has basically stopped it would be unwise to mess with any parts of the system unless you know what you are doing but having said that, apart from your saved mixes the whole software part can be reinstalled and got working again.
Version 4, as used on 9098 desks is different to the versions used on everything else (generally Version 3.XX). 'Upgrades' can probably be installed but the majority of releases were to make the program run correctly on all the different desks and may not actually be different to the versions you have.
From memory, the last release of software was 3.5D, but as mentioned earlier not all the features in it are necessarily relevent to all the desks.
Even the ATARI version works but looks a bit cranky in monochrome and most of the monitors have faded away!
Matt S
Old 8th September 2007
  #3
Lives for gear
 
Benmrx's Avatar
 

I'd sure love to hear more opinions on ST Automation from real world users.

It's looking I might be purchasing a new (to me) console later next year, and the Amek desks seem to fit in my price range, and have the routing that I'm looking for in a desk. However, one of the big selling factors to me on the Amek desks is the Automation. .

Thrillfactor has mentioned a mod that can be done on some of the Amek desks, but says that the mod requires ripping out/disabling the "recall" software. I'm curious if that also means the automation would be lost as well.

meverylame

I'm curious, which Amek consoles are you working with?
Old 8th September 2007
  #4
Lives for gear
 

Hi
There are many mods that COULD be done but taking the automation out is probably rather pointless. Automation noise is practically non existent in a properly installed console and studio. Depending on which desk, there are things that can be done to change various aspects if you really feel the need but the standard versions were pretty much sorted.
Matt S
Old 8th September 2007
  #5
Gear Maniac
 
Suspects's Avatar
 

SuperTrue

I've got an Amek "Big" with SuperTrue Version 3.2. It's very easy to use, and the Recall and Virtual Dynamics are useful...

The computer requirements are "Vintage" to say the least; it runs on DOS and will not work in a Windows environment...

Dave/Suspect Studios
Old 9th September 2007
  #6
Gear Head
 

I also have a BIG with SuperTrue and Virtual Dynamics. I never really had a hard time figuring out how to use those functions, recall them completely, etc. Always worked on my desk. I don't think I used update mode much. Use that "write to end" on the first pass, then I'd pick stuff I wanted to adjust and use write mode for those faders. I was seldom working more than 16 channel mixes, since that's all the D/A I had.

I have the manual if you need a copy. My BIG has been boxed up for over a year, since I work on an MCI now...
Old 9th September 2007
  #7
Harmless Wacko
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by meverylame View Post
So does anyone know the deal here? I've heard multiple different stories about ST automation, including one stating that it was ultimately what put AMEK out of business, as they were sued by several studios that owned AMEK desks as it did not work. Is this true?
I don't think there is any truth to that story. At all.

Quote:
I've got 2 AMEK desks in the studio I work at and while it isn't the most intuitive automation to use, especially not to ultimation users, it does seem to work just fine. Is this just a large scale example of RTFM??
Personally, I think supertrue easily competes, or even eclipses any SSL automation(ESPECIALLY Ultimation vs. 9098i SuperMove)on a NUMBER of fronts. For the way I like to work... It is a MUCH more flexible and sophisticated system.

Quote:

Also, anyone out here have any tips for ST automation? Right now I'm working it like this:
1.) Rough in a mix.
2.) Turn on every single automation for every parameter that I may even begin to automate and write one pass with out doing any changes.
3.) Make all changes from this point on in update mode.
This seem reasonable?
I'd take a long look at the manual.

If your above paragraph is any indicator... You've got about a dozen basic operating priciples for SuperTrue that you should become familiar with.

If you don't have a manual. PM me and I'll get you one.

You can get great results with SuperTrue.

SM.
Old 9th September 2007
  #8
Lives for gear
 

Hi
Glad to see some positive comments about Supertrue.
I have never really used it since I am a commissioning engineer not a 'musical knob twiddler'.
I was part of the team that took Supertrue from a single floppy version working in ram on an ATARI through to version 3.5C using a PC. EVERY desk that was installed had a fully working version of Supertrue on it, even though there are a few minor differences over the 9 year period I was doing this.
Although the computer is 'dated' it should be thought about in terms of being the automation computer, not a PC which happens to be attached to a desk. The 486 DX4 or low speed Pentium 1 is sufficient to run the software so why overspec for the sake of it?
Finding a '486' is rather easier and cheaper than any part of a SSL system.
There are several ways to use Supertrue and as long as the system has made an initial 'write to end' pass with some timecode it is pretty tolerant to most other 'mistakes' that may be made during operation.
All parts needed for maintenance of any Supertrue system are still available if needed but a few chips are getting hard to find.
Matt S
Old 9th September 2007
  #9
Quote:
Originally Posted by slipperman View Post
I don't think there is any truth to that story. At all.



Personally, I think supertrue easily competes, or even eclipses any SSL automation(ESPECIALLY Ultimation vs. 9098i SuperMove)on a NUMBER of fronts. For the way I like to work... It is a MUCH more flexible and sophisticated system.



I'd take a long look at the manual.

If your above paragraph is any indicator... You've got about a dozen basic operating priciples for SuperTrue that you should become familiar with.

If you don't have a manual. PM me and I'll get you one.

You can get great results with SuperTrue.

SM.
Slippie,
Thanks for clearing that up. I'll be sending you a PM about the manual. ****ing interns.

As for what desks I've got.... I've got a 40 channel Mozart fully loaded with the RN-15 modules and an Angela II 40 channel. Mozart is kinda a bear with maintainance but sounds like MUCH more desk than what we paid for it. Anyone else here have any experience running the Mozart daily? Similar experiences?

Cheers guys,
Jason
Old 9th September 2007
  #10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Syson View Post
Hi
Glad to see some positive comments about Supertrue.
I have never really used it since I am a commissioning engineer not a 'musical knob twiddler'.
I was part of the team that took Supertrue from a single floppy version working in ram on an ATARI through to version 3.5C using a PC. EVERY desk that was installed had a fully working version of Supertrue on it, even though there are a few minor differences over the 9 year period I was doing this.
Although the computer is 'dated' it should be thought about in terms of being the automation computer, not a PC which happens to be attached to a desk. The 486 DX4 or low speed Pentium 1 is sufficient to run the software so why overspec for the sake of it?
Finding a '486' is rather easier and cheaper than any part of a SSL system.
There are several ways to use Supertrue and as long as the system has made an initial 'write to end' pass with some timecode it is pretty tolerant to most other 'mistakes' that may be made during operation.
All parts needed for maintenance of any Supertrue system are still available if needed but a few chips are getting hard to find.
Matt S
Hey Matt,
Are you referring to the TRG card or just components on the TRG?
Thanks,
Jason
Old 9th September 2007
  #11
Lives for gear
 

Hi
The TRG (Timecode Reader Generator) is just one of the many cards used and yes complete cards or the components are available.
The system is complicated by the origins using boards which interfaced with an ATARI to be fitted to desks which were in production (yes there is ONE 2500 (I think) with supertrue but it is the only one ) then Mozart, Hendrix and Einstein. Adding Virtual Dynamics, Virtual FX and moving faders added more excitement!
During this period a change was made to the 'IBM' PC but the necessary 'new' bits had to be backwards compatible, thus making it more complicated than need be.
The BIG, Recall and 501 were a diversion in that it used serial comms (RS232) with more 'intelligence' built into the desk.
In terms of chips hard to find, perhaps the 68000 processor in a DIP package and possibly some of the FIFO chips.
Matt S
Old 9th September 2007
  #12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Syson View Post
Hi
The TRG (Timecode Reader Generator) is just one of the many cards used and yes complete cards or the components are available.
The system is complicated by the origins using boards which interfaced with an ATARI to be fitted to desks which were in production (yes there is ONE 2500 (I think) with supertrue but it is the only one ) then Mozart, Hendrix and Einstein. Adding Virtual Dynamics, Virtual FX and moving faders added more excitement!
During this period a change was made to the 'IBM' PC but the necessary 'new' bits had to be backwards compatible, thus making it more complicated than need be.
The BIG, Recall and 501 were a diversion in that it used serial comms (RS232) with more 'intelligence' built into the desk.
In terms of chips hard to find, perhaps the 68000 processor in a DIP package and possibly some of the FIFO chips.
Matt S
Absolutely. I was really more curious as to what is becoming rare to find in reference to the desks that I have (sorry should have been more clear) so that I can try to snag some up before they become unobtainium.
Thanks,
Jason
Old 10th September 2007
  #13
Lives for gear
 

Hi
I wouldn't worry excessively as there will always be parts available somewhere and unless you have a complete set of boards 'in the cupboard' you can guarantee you won't have the right bit.
Matt S
Old 22nd May 2011
  #14
I'm piecing together an Amek media 51 that is using supertrue 4 automation & running the recall & virtual dynamics. It is a rack mount Ibm computer. I made a db15 to db15 m to m. The computer didn't reconize the console. Is it a db9 to db15 for the comm cable?

**So it is a rs232 setup... I found 1 or 2 pinouts that may be correct. Does anyone know the pin config for this?

Side note...how do the virtual dynamics sound on this thing?
Old 22nd May 2011
  #15
Lives for gear
 

Hi
The connector on the desk is a 15 pin D which has RS232 comms and 8 pin printer port connections on it (for the spoken recall function audio). Details are in the manual.
Assuming the computer is the one taht was with the desk originally, DON'T mess with the software, If it works it works and if it doesn't it will probably be hardware (cabling or in the desk).
Matt S
Old 22nd May 2011
  #16
All I have is the manual available online. I see no mentions of how to hook up the computer. Or any pinouts, etc. I only have a F 15 pin d plug, a M & F XLR, and a midi port on the console. There are (2) M 9 pin d plug & a F 15 pin d plug on the computer. I got the parts to make one, but can't figure it out...

The computer/software appears to be booting fine but can't find VD hardware & time code. But I'm sure it's the cable I made.

Are you saying there should be 2 types of dsub type connectors on the console?

Manual online not much help in my needs or trouble shooting.
Old 22nd March 2013
  #17
I've recently got the console working 100% minus 2 bad mic pres (Burnt resistors that i will fix soon) & 1 bad direct out (signal, but no bass).
A small number of the channels did not recognize the automation/VD. It was the molex? cable at the bottom of strip connecting to fader was not seating properly. Figured out the correct pinout for the computer/console cable by finding the service manual, not owners, and made one to spec and now all Automation,VD, Recall, and cues work like a charm. Every once in a while it wont recognize a chl or two, but a reboot fixes.
Lots of the internal jumpers on channel strips were mismatched or missing, fixed all those. few dirty faders & pots... started to sound great!

I did encounter a HUGE problem after starting to use it constantly and can see if anyone can shed some light on this.

All of a sudden major breakup/distortion came across the whole mix. Worsened as it was turned up. ...Fast forward 30 min of troubleshooting... I found the problem to be the speaker output card, not the 2 buss. There are 2 Resistors that looked to be originally mini surface mount(i assume since all others that populate this part of the board are) that have been replaced with regular carbon film resistors that are bent hairpin style to meet the smaller solder points of the previous mini surface mount. One had become loose somehow. did not look like a cold solder snap & the bottom lead was slightly coming off the PCB.

So now ill get to my question... Pics coming soon, sure that will help.

1.Are these 2 resistors a known mod or are they a repair that was done at some point?

2.You think
A. that this section of the console got so hot it melted the solder and gravity slightly bent the resistor away from the PCB lead?
OR
B. you think it was not actually soldered together, just making contact & gravity took affect?

3.I resoldered the 1 bad one and the speakers are SINGING!! But im still concerned about one of the leads coming off the PCB.

What can i use to re secure the copper lead back to the PCB?

4. And lastly the bad/no bass direct out. Anything else to look for beyond the caps on the output section that feeds it? Already swapped with known working channel, so its after the chl strip.
Old 22nd March 2013
  #18
Lives for gear
 

Hi
Surface mount resistors can't necessarily dissipate as much heat (unless larger sizes were designed onto the PCB) so may have been a 'fix' to use ordinary types when it was discovered the SMT types got too hot for that case size.
Poor LF is almost always capacitors, you just haven't found the culprits yet.
For better 'mechanical' fixing drill a small hole in board, solder parts as necessary and then maybe apply a spot of 'superglue' to make it a little more firm.
The Media 51 was only 'released into the wild' at the time I left AMEK so I did not see any in practice, the only other modules using SMT parts at that time was the Recall RN channel strips.
Matt S
PS ALL circuitry MUST be properly powered ALL THE TIME otherwise the imbalance of the supply rails will trash other components in the affected circuit blocks.
Old 22nd March 2013
  #19
Very good! I have not yet tried to hunt down the bad output cap. Soon. Very soon. I will put a touch of superglue on it now. Was afraid of the solvent eating the board or copper or getting to hot and having no affect.

But I'm really digging it and so are the guys using it now. 1st time it's been used in its full form.

You think leaving the bad cap in the output section will cause further problems if left as is for about a week?

Thanks Matt!!!!!

The rest of this reply was intentionally left blank.
Old 16th March 2015
  #20
Here for the gear
 

Hi all, does anyone know where I can get a copy of Supertrue V4 for my Amek Media 51? The hard drive died in my automation PC and I wasn't given the original Supertrue disks when I acquired the console.
Many thanks in advance,
Michael
Old 16th March 2015
  #21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miccy View Post
Hi all, does anyone know where I can get a copy of Supertrue V4 for my Amek Media 51? The hard drive died in my automation PC and I wasn't given the original Supertrue disks when I acquired the console.
Many thanks in advance,
Michael
Try Colin at AML. He has a boatload of AML parts. Not sure if he has software though.
Old 17th March 2015
  #22
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
Try Colin at AML. He has a boatload of AML parts. Not sure if he has software though.
Hi Trev, thanks for the info. I've sent Colin an email so hopefully he can point me in the right direction.

Michael Cristiano
Soundplant Productions
MichaelCristiano.com.au
Old 17th March 2015
  #23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Miccy View Post
Hi Trev, thanks for the info. I've sent Colin an email so hopefully he can point me in the right direction.

Michael Cristiano
Soundplant Productions
MichaelCristiano.com.au
You'll also find him masquerading as 'Slenderchap' around here...
Old 17th March 2015
  #24
Lives for gear
 

Hi
I have software for all other versions of Supertrue but not Version 4.00 onwards.
Any other owner of a media 51 should be able to help out by copying their software.
Matt S
Old 14th October 2016
  #25
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Syson View Post
Hi
I have software for all other versions of Supertrue but not Version 4.00 onwards.
Any other owner of a media 51 should be able to help out by copying their software.
Matt S
Hi MATT do you still have super true/ vd software the the big?
Michael
Old 30th May 2017
  #26
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Miccy View Post
Hi all, does anyone know where I can get a copy of Supertrue V4 for my Amek Media 51? The hard drive died in my automation PC and I wasn't given the original Supertrue disks when I acquired the console.
Many thanks in advance,
Michael
I know it is 2 years later on but i have the disks for super true v4...

Looking to get the Automation back up working after a hard drive crash, if anyone has The IBM MS DOS for this PC from 2001 would be great, had this desk since 2001 and very really has it let me down. (Amek Media 5.1)
Old 22nd September 2017
  #27
Gear Head
 

HI Otto, Im desperate for super true 4 disks!!!

I have DOS but you are probably sorted now.. message me PLEASE!!!!!
Old 6th August 2018
  #28
Lives for gear
 
ilan's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Otto the B View Post
I know it is 2 years later on but i have the disks for super true v4...

Looking to get the Automation back up working after a hard drive crash, if anyone has The IBM MS DOS for this PC from 2001 would be great, had this desk since 2001 and very really has it let me down. (Amek Media 5.1)
hey there.
i know this is a pretty old thread.
i'm going for a Big44 with automation on pc.
the supertrue floppy that came with it seems to be defect.
can you - or anyone - provide a version of the software for this console?
i can't find any downloads unfortunately.

cheers and thanks in advance

ilan
Old 6th August 2018
  #29
Moderator
 
Northward's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by ilan View Post
hey there.
i know this is a pretty old thread.
i'm going for a Big44 with automation on pc.
the supertrue floppy that came with it seems to be defect.
can you - or anyone - provide a version of the software for this console?
i can't find any downloads unfortunately.

cheers and thanks in advance

ilan
I think you still can download it from the AMEK website. (you'll need flash enable to see the menu)

AMEK Professional Audio Design and Manufacture

In the support section.

or:

http://www.amek.com/support/software/SUP3P5A.zip
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