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Long run PFL?


Allen Rowand
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I'm kicking around ideas for a small livestreaming/corporate style rig and have been checking out the various "digital mixer in a stagebox" devices, like the Allen & Heath Qu-SB. Seems like a great idea to not have to run 100' snake in a conference room, but I can't figure out how to get the PFL signal from the stagebox to the mix position.

 

Does anyone have a method for sending a stereo headphone signal 100 feet? Am I overthinking this?

 

What I'd love to see is someone build a digital stagebox that connects to a small (eight-ish channel) control surface over Cat 6, with headphone (and possibly line level) outputs in the surface.

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My friend, a wonderful world of AoIP awaits you!

 

Dante protocols are pretty ubiquitous in the gear you’re looking for, but there’s also AES67, Ravenna, Rocknet, Cobranet, and others.

 

Check out audinate’s own website to see the thousands of Dante enabled products. There are many options, made by many different brands, that can do precisely what you’re looking for. 

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My Allen & Heath SQ6 mixer, when coupled with the DT168 stagebox allows complete control over a Dante network.  16 inputs and 8 outputs "as if" the mixer was in the room with the presenters.  300' is easily doable with no other devices in the network.  You will need a computer to set it up the first time.

 

That is the simplest Dante network and you can (and will) find lots of ways to make it better, albeit more complicated.

 

My Dante network (I record live acoustic music, often times multi-track) has, probably just under 20 devices attached in its largest configuration and works like a freakin' charm.

 

Prepare to be excited by the possibilities and like Doc says, check out the Audinate site.  Tons of information there.

 

D.

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I'm very familiar with AoIP and Dante. The challenge is that I don't want a digital mixer at FOH with nothing plugged into it other than headphones and main outs, while the inputs are plugged into a remote digital stagebox. I want the mixer itself in a stagebox form factor (which exists) but with the headphones and main outputs at FOH.

 

The question here is really about running an analog headphone signal 100'.

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If you really want to run the headphone signal analog, just take two line outs for the run and have a headphone amp near you. But in the case of the A&H, one of their ME personal monitoring systems would be more elegant. You'd still have to mix from an iPad though. Why are you wanting the mixer in the stagebox rather than a real mixer setup?

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I made some custom male and female 3.5mm TRS male and female to XLR male and female adapters so I could sent a stereo HP feed over any balanced XLR cable.  I used pin-1 as common ground , pin-2 left and pin-3 right.

I have sent a HP mix through a 100' XLR snake w/o issue

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I do a LOT of corporate live streaming!  Frankly, other than a small snake to the streaming "table", my sources are mostly wireless microphones with the receivers right next to me at FOH (the rooms I work in usually seat only about 200 people)!  I will often place a hardwired podium mic, and take a playback feed from a computer, but for me there is usually not a great need for long snakes.  

 

I would think however you'd want a mixer with faders.  When you get into those interactive panel discussions, it's rather difficult to do fast "active" mixing on a computer.  But if that's what you want to do and you only want to address the headphone issue, I think Rick's suggestion is a good one.  The other option is to use an IEM system to send you the headphone/PFL feed wirelessly!

 

Tom

 

 

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6 hours ago, Patrick Farrell said:

Why are you wanting the mixer in the stagebox rather than a real mixer setup?

Space considerations. There's no small form factor mixer that has the features I want (EQ, dynamics, automix) at a price point I can accept for low budget jobs. I can get those in a digital stagebox. This would also mean I could leave the 100' snake at home. What I really want in a mixer is along the line of a Yamaha O.5v. The QSC Touchmix 8 is close in size but doesn't have automix. I need something I can set and mostly forget while I'm running a camera.

 

1 hour ago, Rick Reineke said:

I made some custom male and female 3.5mm TRS male and female to XLR male and female adapters so I could sent a stereo HP feed over any balanced XLR cable.  I used pin-1 as common ground , pin-2 left and pin-3 right.

I have sent a HP mix through a 100' XLR snake w/o issue

Thanks Rick. I may try and mock this up over the weekend.

7 minutes ago, TomBoisseau said:

I do a LOT of corporate live streaming!  Frankly, other than a small snake to the streaming "table", my sources are mostly wireless microphones with the receivers right next to me at FOH (the rooms I work in usually seat only about 200 people)!  I will often place a hardwired podium mic, and take a playback feed from a computer, but for me there is usually not a great need for long snakes.  

 

I would think however you'd want a mixer with faders.  When you get into those interactive panel discussions, it's rather difficult to do fast "active" mixing on a computer.  But if that's what you want to do and you only want to address the headphone issue, I think Rick's suggestion is a good one.  The other option is to use an IEM system to send you the headphone/PFL feed wirelessly!

 

Tom

 

 

My jobs have been around 10 to 12 boundary mics, computer playback, and maybe a wireless handheld. The snake makes load in and out much faster. I agree with you on faders, but if I'm OMB'ing it something's got to give.

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