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A&H Zed R-16 out via ADAT into RME HDSPe RayDAT... will this work? Dual-Channel Preamps
Old 12th September 2011
Gear Addict
yeloop's Avatar

A&H Zed R-16 out via ADAT into RME HDSPe RayDAT... will this work?

Hi Guys,

I'm hoping for some help - I am looking at buying an Allen and Heath Zed R-16 mixer - it has been getting amazing reviews for its preamps and seems like a really great long-term investment for my studio.

My only concern is that it apparently has only average drivers for firewire connectivity, and doesn't deliver super-low latency (for using virtual instruments, for example).

I've come up with a way around this though... if I use the 16 channels of ADAT in and out on the Zed R-16, with something like this RME card (RME: HDSPe RayDAT) - I would get super-low latency and all the other 16 channel functionality of the Zed R16.

I just want to do a sanity check that this way of connecting the Zed to my computer won't have any problems or drawbacks! RME interfaces (especially PCI-Express, I would imagine) have super-low latencies and great drivers, which would mean no worries of long-term support if A&H didn't support the Zed R-16 beyond its lifetime.

Anyway... if anyone can help I'd appreciate it!

Old 16th September 2014
Lives for gear
papawise's Avatar
I'm considering exactly the same setup, any comments will be much appreciated.
I don't count with much time.

thank you in advance.
Old 16th September 2014
Lives for gear
12tone's Avatar

I have a RayDat, and I can attest that it has incredibly low latency, generally 15-20% better on same buffer settings than my UFX (which is also quite good) on either FW or USB.

However I'm realizing its limitation is 96k that you lose half the I/O.

I'm inclined at this point to upgrade to MADI, or possibly supplement it with an RME AES card.

That said, for a strictly adat solution, it's performance is quite good and I'm sure there will be no issues as pertaining to the OP.
Old 17th September 2014
Gear Nut

I own the Zed R-16 and use the Raydat for the 16 i/o into Reaper (formally used Pro Tools). To answer the question it works very well and is rock solid.

Be careful though...the Master 2 bus on the Zed is an analog out with this set up and needs to be somehow routed back into your daw to record the 2 bus mix. This means you need a A2D box that will Adat or SPDIF back into the RayDat. The Zed wants to be the master clock with all other gear slaved.

All of this starts to get very convoluted...especially if you start adding outboard pres through other convertors. Using the monitor section of the board gets wacky also if you start wanting to monitor outboard pres or previously recorded tracks...

All in all Im happy with the kit. If you intend to keep your kit small and centered around the Zed, its a great way to go but if you have dreams of a bigger rig think it out carefully.

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