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Problem : Two separate pres, each with SPDIF out, Only 1

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by Barkingdogstudios, Nov 13, 2003.

  1. Barkingdogstudios

    Barkingdogstudios Active Member

    Oct 29, 2003
    Thanks to those folks who helped me with finding a preamp that would have SPDIF digital outs.

    I'm using an Aardvark Q10 and I want to make use of the two SPDIF-in tracks available on the unit.

    Here's the rub ....

    Say I decided to buy two separate preamps, just for sake of argument a Focusrite Trackmaster (with optional card) and a PreSonus Digitube. They both have an RCA-type output jack for SPDIF out. My Aardvark Q10 has only 1 input jack. How would I be able to use the two separate pres at the same time? If I wanted access to both digital-in tracks on the Aardvark at the same time would I have to have a single unit, dual-channel pre like a TL Audio 5051 or Focusrite Twin Track (with optional cards)? Or is there some way of combining the two digital output signals? Please don't tell me I'd have to buy a Yamaha O1V or some other digital mixer!
  2. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Distinguished Member

    Feb 23, 2001
    Silicon Valley
    A mixer is the correct tool and function to combine more than one input at the same time.

    If you have one digital input and more than one digital output that needs to be mixed/combined, then a digital mixer is required to use both at the same time just like the way it works when using analog.
  3. mjones4th

    mjones4th Active Member

    Aug 15, 2003
    Fine then we won't tell you that :D

    Sorry to say, my friend, there's no way around it. Except if you use multiple audio hardware, say, two soundcards, each with its own SPDIF.

  4. Barkingdogstudios

    Barkingdogstudios Active Member

    Oct 29, 2003
    Thanks gentlemen.

    Apparently, the Focusrite Trackmaster does offer an alternative. There is an "ADC External Input" on the back of the unit that allows you to access the second "spare" channel of the stereo digital output. So, I could use another preamp to plug into the "ADC External Input" on the Focusrite and use the Focusrite itself to act as a pre amp. This would allow me access to both of the Q10's SPDIF tracks! WOO-HOO! Ok, I realize the Focusrite isn't a Neve or API .... but it does what I want at a sub-astronomical price. And hopefully this puts me somewhere between the quality of the Digitube and the Apogee MiniMe. There may be other strips that offer this but they sure don't advertise it! I only found this out by downloading the Trackmaster user's guide.
  5. MixterRader

    MixterRader Guest

    Great. Too bad they traded functionality for sound quality.
  6. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Jul 2, 2002
    77 Sunset Lane.
    Barkingdogstudio, so do you dislike the pres on the Q10? Those are supposed to be class A and I have heard they were pretty good,. so why do you want to use 2 different pres? Is it because you're trying to get more inputs or do you want different pre than what the Q10 has?
  7. Barkingdogstudios

    Barkingdogstudios Active Member

    Oct 29, 2003

    No, I've always thought the pres on the Q10 were pretty good (and I have heard others say the same). I've had some pretty amazing results by just plugging a decent mic into them and letting 'er rip. My reasoning for using outboard pres is two-fold, one, as you wondered, to access the two additional digital outputs and two is to have some access to compression and perhaps adding "character" to the sound prior to A2D conversion. Most of the recording that I'm doing is "off the floor" stuff with the bands that I'm in and that requires a lot of simultaneous tracks. Only inputs one thru four offer inserts so any compressing or shaping of the sound on the other tracks is going to require outboard equipment between the instrument (or vox) and the Q10's pre. I realize it's going to take a lot of "tweaking" but that's why it's fun, right?
  8. lionyouth

    lionyouth Guest

    try to plug them into a digital reciever if you have at home....like a yamaha...they have high quality conversions.....but this is temporary set up...until you can go out and buy a ....yup youo guessed it mixer...or a digital box that lets yoou send out more than one output...its out there....with the reciever switch back and forth from one input to another...like cd, md/cdr,dvd or some other pcm source.....ok ..thats if you have a reciever like that.....other than that check out midiman for a unit......

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