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Monitor switching for a record rack


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Hello again, everyone.

I'm writing you in a last attempt to decide upon a method of monitoring for my new rig I am putting together. Your assistance will be greatly appreciated because I honestly have been a pampered studio rat almost my entire career and I'm now being thrown into the deep-end of live audio..

I record award shows which sometimes have musical entertainment. Mostly it's podium, but sometimes there can be up to 24 tracks of misc. audio tracks I need to record.

My basic rig I am putting together is a few 192 I/Os, Sync I/O, thunderbolt/PCIe converter into a laptop. As a backup, I am purchasing a JoeCo blackbox recorder. I have worked out my rack to be about 16 RU high, and now I need a good monitoring system that utilizes only 1 headphone plug - i.e. I don't want to go plugging my headphones around in the back of the rack to monitor the main recording as opposed to the backup, and I'd also like to possibly have a pre-Pro Tools feed as well to A-B the recording with.

I am looking for an extremely compact headphone monitoring system where I can plug in many sources and monitor them easily by switching a turn-dial or something similar. Ideally it would be 1 RU...

Have any of you had a similar problem to mine? How did you go about solving it?

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I have run into this a lot. A cheap way to go is a simple switch box with hp TRS out, and as many channels as you need. You have to balance the input levels on whatever is feeding the box, but it's light, simple, no power required and monkey-DIY (I use a 4-way version my mixer cart). A slightly improved method is a cheap line mixer: Rolls MX28 etc, or if you have more $ Ashly LX308B or ATI. I've also used bigger audio mixers for this if only because they have both faders and mutes--easier to dance between inputs etc., but way larger/more rack spaces.

phil p

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Hey guys,

Wow! Thanks for the many responses! I was waiting to be notified by e-mail if I got a response and I thought I had it set up correctly to do that but I just now saw these on a hunch - I knew you guys wouldn't let me down! :)

Ok so those suggestions are great. Unfortunately I did some more work-out and I'd need a lot more inputs:

Here is how it breaks down:

On the headphone switcher:

2 Pro Tools (channels 1 and 2 on the DB25 breakout)

2 JoeCo outs (probably connected from the TRS headphone jack on the back of the unit)

8 channels of ambience mics (off of the DB25 breakout of an Aphex 1788A aux out)

4 channels of podium preamp outs

2 channels of podium limiter outs

2 channels of podium "low" outs

8 channels of feeds from the broadcast truck

which adds up to a grand total of 28 inputs of switching.

Think it's still possible? I suppose the only way would be a DIY rig since I can't seem to find something like this in existence except buying a huge mixboard to carry around with me,

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post-3357-0-14487600-1348890320_thumb.pnSearched for it.. Couldn't find one that would make sense? Or be able to be compact enough?

I am basically looking for this:

A 2 to 3 RU box (1RU if possible) which has 2 sides of inputs:

Left side is "A", which has 4 sets of 8-channel DB-25 connectors on the back that I can plug in A) 8 podium channels, 8) 8 ambience mics, C) 8 broadcast truck feeds, D) open DB-25 that is open for expansion. One rotary switch switches between the 4 banks of 8, and another rotary switch switches between channels 1+2, 3+4, 5+6, 7+8. Then, there is a 3-position switch that switches the headphones to be either L (left channel only in both headphones), Stereo (both channels in stereo), and R (right side in both headphones).

The right side is "B", which has the recording device inputs. One rotary switch switches between Pro Tools and JoeCo, possibly another rotary switch that can switch between 8 tracks like side A has. Also has a L, stereo and R switch as above.

And, 2 buttons in the center labelled "A", and "B", and when I press B it listens to the whichever recorder and channel I have selected, and when I press A, it cuts the B side and switches to the A side - whatever I have selected.

This way I can listen to any source before it hits the A/D converters, and then post converters (out of Pro Tools or JoeCo).

Hope that makes sense!

What routing switcher do you mean? I can't really zero in a search that finds what I think you're talking about - sorry!

I attached a little drawing I did of how I want it to look - hope it helps. Ignore the lines going upwards - I put explanations for the tech in little boxes above and didn't want to bore you with them. The two circles on the far left is the TRS headphone jack and volume knob.

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@Senator and Philip - thanks. I searched Marker and didn't really find exactly what I'm looking for so I'm in touch with some custom electronics companies here in LA (Burbank). I think that's the best route because it is a pretty wacky specialist item I need.

I just need to find some really nice, sexy knobs to install with it! I really like the Coleman switches and knobs. What's your guys' favorite types of knobs and switches?

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