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Thread: Mackie inserts as direct outs/returns to multitrack

  1. #1
    robin watson is offline Force of Nature
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    Mackie inserts as direct outs/returns to multitrack

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    By plugging a Y-cable into the insert of a Mackie 1604 (as you would to patch in a compressor, etc.), and then connecting the send/return portions of that Y-cable to the inputs/outputs of the HD24, would that not give me both a direct out from the mixer to the multitrack (for recording) plus an uninterrupted return path back to mixer (for playback)?

    This would seem to me to be a far more elegant setup than a 1/4" jack inserted halfway in, as suggested in the manual. Why is the above scheme not suggested in the manual? Or am I missing something?

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    Bulls Hit is offline Been Here, Posted That
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    As long as you can route the output of each track to a seperate physical output you could do that. But then you wouldn't have all your tracks going to your Master faders in your daw.....would that be an issue?

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    robin watson is offline Force of Nature
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bulls Hit
    As long as you can route the output of each track to a seperate physical output you could do that. But then you wouldn't have all your tracks going to your Master faders in your daw.....would that be an issue?
    It's not a DAW; it's a hard disk recorder, so that's not an issue. Maybe I'm not putting it the right way...

    If a compressor, for example, is patched into an insert, it takes the signal right after the Mackie's preamp and processes it then spits the signal back into the channel strip again. Surely the multitrack would do the same thing?

    I'm not sure what you mean by 'seperate physical output' sorry. Perhaps we're talking at cross purposes here.

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    Adam P is offline 1K Silver Member
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    Yes, that would work, since the HD24 monitors its inputs on its outputs when tracks are in Record mode (at least, from what I understood when I read the HD24's literature).

    It's probably not mentioned since it requires insert patch cables instead of simple TS cables, but its not that big of a difference.

    I have done the "1/2 way plugged in" deal with a Mackie 1202 before and, even though they weren't plugged in all of the way, they were still held pretty securely. I wasn't worried that they were going to fall out or anything.

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    xstatic is offline Been Here, Posted That
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    HD recorders are setup with their inoput monitoring much in the same way as analog recorders. If you set up this way then you lose half of your input monitoring.

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    robin watson is offline Force of Nature
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    Well, whatever 'losing your input monitoring' means, the setup works beautifully for me: 16-track live recording, single trim pot rec level setting, out to recorder preEQ (set and you're done), set monitor mix with faders without affecting record levels.

    This should be mentioned in the manual, regardless of any drawbacks.

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    con_ritmo is offline Newbie
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    however this would mean that you are dependant on the hd24 to spit you a signal back.

    what you do is have a trs on one end with the tip and ring shorted together...out to a ts. signal goes from the mic preamp...and is then sent to both the signal return and to your multitrack.

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    robin watson is offline Force of Nature
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    TRS (with TR shorted) at insert, out to TS for the multi-track input? And this keeps signal flow uninterrupted through the channel strips and the multitrack? Mmm...interesting. Wouldn't there be a drop in signal level and noise, since the signal is now meeting both the impedance of the multitrack input and the channel strip?

    Thanks for the reply, mate.

  9. #9
    xstatic is offline Been Here, Posted That
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    I guess for live recording that would work just fine. However, in the studio most recorders are setup so that what you hear from the tape deck is different input or output signals based on whether a track is record enabled, in the process of recording etc.... What I meant was that if a player is trying to do an overdub, he/she can't hear what they are playing during the preroll section due to all siganl flowing only through the same input on a recorder and not being multed through tape returns, extra channels etc.... However, i do see no reason why that won't work for a single pass recording.

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    con_ritmo is offline Newbie
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    yes, the shorted trs to ts is what i do when i'm recording live off of a mixing board...to my hd24 actually. as an added bonus the hd24 becomes like a pseudo meter bridge for your mixer too...(pre eq/fader of course)

    works like a snap and the signal loss is negligible...iow you really won't notice it.

    if you are really inventive you can wire up another cable which does the same thing, and still allows you to patch in outboard gear to the insert.

    i won't use the shorted trs->ts if i'm in a studio environment since i'll be normally using outboard preamps there anyways...and what xstatic was referring to regarding multiple passes...

    and if i'm using outboard preamps and i'm in a live situation, i'll just y-cable off of the preamp to the mixer and the hd24.

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