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Questions about routing from DAW to external hardware
Old 23rd October 2013
  #1
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Questions about routing from DAW to external hardware

I use an Onyx 400F interface and my DAW is Reaper. I've only recently gone the DAW route after recording with different hardware based systems (ADAT LX20, Tascam TSR8, Alesis HD24) for the past 5 or 6 years. I've figured out (I think) how to route 8 tracks to an analog mixer through my interface if I'd want to go that route, but what about routing individual tracks or stereo mixes to analog hardware (reverbs, compressors, eq) then back to my DAW. I read a lot about people doing this but I just can't seem to wrap my head around how to do it. Any advice would really be appreciated. Thanks.

Larry
Old 23rd October 2013
  #2
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TheBrightSide's Avatar
Hey Larry,

I do this with my setup, set up hardware as external effects within my DAW.
It is awesome once you have it setup, like the best of both worlds.
I use Cubase, so I'm not sure about setting it up in Reaper, but after a quick search, here is a good description of how someone does it in Reaper.

My audio interfaces OUTputs are connected to my the INputs of most of my gear (guitar & bass amps, FX, pedals, etc).

The OUTputs of the gear connects to my audio interfaces INputs.

In reaper's Preferences->Audio->Device I've made sure that the First & Last Input range covers the audio interface's inputs that my gear is connected to (this will be the OUTput connections of the gear).

I also make sure the Output range covers the Outputs I'm using (on the audio interfaces) to feed the outboard gear (which connects to the gears INputs).

I have also used reaper's Preferences->Audio->Channel Naming and have both Input and Output channel name aliasing boxes ticked/checked and have edited the names (click Edit Names) of both the Ins/Outs to reflect which bit of gear that In/Out connects to.

This means I can Send any audio signal from any track to any piece of outboard hardware I have connected.

It also means that I can set a tracks Input to be the return from any piece of gear.

And it means that I can take a signal that's been processed from one bit of outboard, and then feed it to any other, or several or all, other bits of hardware I've got connected.

Sometimes I'll record a DI input and, simultaneously, Send that signal to several outboards at the same time, with each return being a separate track.

Once you've connected your gear, set up the correct range in reaper's preferences, and aliased the channel names - you can treat the outboard returns just as normal track inputs, and you can use the 'IO' button on any track to add a Audio Hardware Output - which will then use the outboard just as any other Send.
Old 23rd October 2013
  #3
Lives for gear
Thanks so much for your reply BrightSide. You've always been a big help to me. I'll study all this a bit and give it a try. Thanks again.

Larry
Old 23rd October 2013
  #4
Old 23rd October 2013
  #5
Lives for gear
Thanks Sheldon
Old 24th October 2013
  #6
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TheBrightSide's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by adathead 53 View Post
Thanks so much for your reply BrightSide. You've always been a big help to me. I'll study all this a bit and give it a try. Thanks again.

Larry
No problem Larry.
While those instructions may seem daunting, it's easier if you break it down to two aspects. Firstly connecting your hardware to the in's and out's of your Onyx, then setting up effects channels to correspond to those in's and out's in Reaper. Once you get your head around that it's pretty straightforward. And once it's set up, your good to go.

It's really worth the effort two. One of the great features of modern DAW'S is intergrating your hardware effects. Instead of recording a part with reverb, you can add it later with a lot more control. And then you can send that reverb to any track in the DAW, with full control just like it is a plugin effect.

And because your Onyx has 10 in's and out's, you could set up 5 stereo effect units, or 10 mono ones, which is pretty impressive.
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