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Clock Distributors

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by Lonewalker, Dec 7, 2005.

  1. Lonewalker

    Lonewalker Active Member

    I need a distributor for my Word Clocking. I have found good prices on used Aardvark and Lucid units. Do any of you have any real-world experience with these and could advise which of the two would be "better"... They both look pretty impressive, but having never used those brands, I wouldn't know. I would be using it to amplify my Apogee master clock (AD16X). In my situation, the signal is not strong enough to talk to all my gear, so I need a distro unit.

    Thanx!!
     
  2. ghellquist

    ghellquist Member

    No experience, just a note. Which might not apply to you, but might help other readers.

    Word-clock is made to be chained on the input connectors. Generally, you should be able to clock at least 7 units from one word clock output. You need the right cable, T-connectors and exactly one termination on the last input.

    Sorry, to take it up here, but I feel that too many people go ahead and buy expensive word clock units when all they need is simple cables and connectors.

    Gunnar
     
  3. McCheese

    McCheese Well-Known Member

    I believe Aardvark went tits-up, so getting one would mean no support at all.

    For word clock an Apogee Big Ben would be really good. Word clock does daisy chain very well, but the Big Ben has like 8 seperate WC outputs.

    A lot of gear these days has a WC throughput eliminating the need for T-Connectors, but there's still a lot out there that don't.
     
  4. Lonewalker

    Lonewalker Active Member

    Well, in my case, the gear won't sync with the "T" connector. I use Mackie HDR24 and Digital8Bus. Right now, I have the AD16 WC set as master @ 44.1Khz. Clock trail goes: AD16 WC out to HDR WC in, HDR WC out to D8B WC in. I was told, and have read, that every digital piece should slave to one WC master signal and you should "T" the signal at the input of the device, and not use the output connector. The thing I don't understand with my setup, is how I'm getting the D8B to sync to the HDR when the HDR is set to see external WC on the BNC connection...? It works and I have not heard any pops or clicks (yet).... Perhaps I've got it working fine, perhaps not... Just a feeling of insecurity... It seems as though my HDR must have WC thoughput, then...
     
  5. McCheese

    McCheese Well-Known Member

    Yep, it's throughput. With only 2 devices there shouldn't be any problem.
     
  6. Lonewalker

    Lonewalker Active Member

    Really!? I thought it was working well, and I even noticed improved audio quality, but I was just like, "This can't be working right"... ya know? A few fellows on the mackie forum thought it might not be a good idea to use it like this (but not for sure), so I've got quite mixed replys on my quest here.

    Thanx!!
     
  7. Lonewalker

    Lonewalker Active Member

    I found some Lucid and Aardvark cheap and figured I'd probably need one sooner or later anyway, so I thought I might get one down the road. It seems these are pretty much in the same "league" as far as they go price-wise. I just don't have the budget for the Bigben right now as I've blown it on the AD16!
     
  8. ghellquist

    ghellquist Member

    My guess is that what happens is as follows.

    1 - mackie syncs to the word clock on its input. This is done using a PLL (Phase Locked Loop) or something similar which creates an internal clock.
    2 - the internal clock is of course used inside the Mackie
    3 - the internal clock (generated in step 1 above) is also output on the Out BNC connector.
    4 the 8Bus is synched to that signal

    This really should work without problems, except for one thing. As the word clock going out from the Mackie comes from a PLL it is bound to have a bit of jitter. All word clocks has jitter, but this is most probably more than from a signal generated directly from an internal crystal oscillator. This might have only a very slight effect on the sound, or a bit more. Difficult to say generally.

    One interesting thing about jitter is that it seems like sometimes more sounds better. I cannot figure it out, but this can be the reason people like to spend big money on Big Bens and say their systems sounds better using it. Accurately measuring jitter is not easily done as far as I know, you need at least a very stable signal generator with less jitter than what you are measuring.

    To get the least jitter, I would set the most important AD as master clock, and synch everything else to that (which seems to be what you have in place already).

    Anyway, the setup you have will continue to work, so no real hurry.

    Gunnar
     
  9. Albert

    Albert Guest

    Are you looking for a master clock or distribution only?

    I've used a Lucid CLKx6 word clock distribution amp for years and it has worked great, no problems at all ever. It just distributes the clock though, no generation.
     
  10. aardvard is no longer a company, they are called some other animal now
     
  11. McCheese

    McCheese Well-Known Member

    Beefalo
     
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