Latency during monitoring? Help!

Discussion in 'Monitoring' started by TomF, May 27, 2005.

  1. TomF

    TomF Guest

    How is everyone dealing with latency during monitoring, for the talent.

    Being an analog guy taking the plunge into the digital world , I've never had to deal with latency during monitoring,but with researching the different software its seems to be a concern with all of the programs.I’ve decided to go with a Pro Tools 002R . I don't have a budget for an HD set-up. Not being familiar with recording in the box, maybe I'm making to much out of this whole Latency thing. My Budget is $30,000.00 ,but before I drop this kind of money on the table ,I'd like to get this set in my head. So this is why I need your help.By the way, the computer I’ve decided go with is an AppleG5 (old tower)2.5 with 2gb (2x1gb sticks).

    I was told that with the 002R, if you enable the low latency monitoring it disables EQ, Plugs, etc., so the clients headphones would have a dry signal only,so thats no good. Then someone suggested lowering the buffer to 128 ,then you can have the wet signal but you still have a small amount of delay. I don't know about either ,because I'm not familiar with working with Pro Tools.

    It was also suggested, to monitor live through an analog board
    splitting the signal to the Pro Tools 002R and to the board.
    With this set-up ,I would have to use Y-cabling, for example placing a y-cable on the output of a Preamp to split the signal, you get the idea. Then I could use an outboard reverb to give the client there wet signal.

    Anyway ,I'm going crazy figuring this out ! :?
    So any information would be greatly appreciated !
  2. I am not familiar with PT but assuming you have converters with several digital output (AES+ADAT for instance), one output goes to your DAW, and the other one goes to your client headphones through a digital console. If there is only one digital output available, you can get the RME Fireface which can be used as a great digital router/mixer.

    My setup here is:

    Apogee AD16x converters
    > AES output to the DAW (through Lynx AES16) for recording
    > ADAT output to a digital console (TASCAM DM24) for low latency monitoring. With this cheap console you can also EQ, comp and add reverb to your signal whilst keeping the overall latency very low.

    Hope it helps.

  3. Kev

    Kev Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 2001
    welcome to DAW recording

    on LE systems I don't use plugs while recording and just put up with the low latency monitoring mode

    you could try hardware monitoring but then O/D to the DAW will have new off-set problems to cure ... there is always a way

    TDM has much lower latency BUT of you start turning plugs on ... especially on the record track then you will have latency again.

    This is digital recording and by nature it must be latent.
  4. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Jul 2, 2002
    77 Sunset Lane.
    I use Cubase which has AISO monitoring, so the A to D converters put out a simultaneous signal. I route that to a small Mackie SR 24 I monitor and mix phone cues on with 4 reverbs normaled to the effects sends and returns, so I can send effects to the 4 discreet phone mixs and the main CR outs ...

    It takes a while to get used to getting the levels set correctly so you don't have a huge discrepancies in the levels between tracking and in playback, which as you could imagine can make punch ins disconcerting, especially to the talent. After a while you get used to it though ... it's just one more mix to set up ...
  5. TomF

    TomF Guest

    Thanks alot for the replies!

    Kurt ,
    Please bear with me on this,I'm new to DAW recording and I'm going into it, kicking and sreaming from the analog world.I was also considing Cubase, so I'm curious .What A to D converter are you using , you don't mean a D to A converter?I don't follow you ,how are you getting a digital signal into the analog board.

    So it seems the best way to approach this, is to split the signal through either a digital or analog board for monitoring. The lowering of the buffer rate, I guess is not ?

    Any other Input is greatly appreciated!
  6. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Jul 2, 2002
    77 Sunset Lane.
    I am using the Alesis AI3's .... but will be looking at upgrading them soon (Apogees I think) since I have finally completed my pre amp rack with the acquisition of a JLM TMP8! (I'm sooooo jazzed!)

    The AI3 is a A/ D and a D/ A converter.

    With AISO monitoring, the input to the converter is sent to the PCI card (in my case a Frontier Designs DAKOTA) and also sent back out to the D to A converters at the same time. This allows latency free monitoring so I can add all kinds of plugs to the recorded tracks for monitoring without concern, while affording the chance to add some sauce to the tracks being recorded via outboard 'verbs..
  7. Randyman...

    Randyman... Well-Known Member

    Jun 1, 2003
    Houston, TX
    I "Demoted" my Roland 2480 to function as a latency free Headphone Mixer with Realtime Effects and Compression. I interface via a RME Multiface, and feed the ADAT OUT into the Roland 2480 (through a Roland DIF-AT24). I use the RME Total Mix software to create upto 8 "stems" from any live inputs & software playback tracks from the DAW, and process/compress the "live" signals in the Roland (Simular to Kurts ASIO Direct Monitoring, But I have control over the monitor routing and sub-mixes in the RME Totalmix software).

    I think my HP mixes have like 3-4mS of latency with compression and effects applied (wet). Not bad at all, and no extra load on the host processor (no "live input Plugins", and my latency stays set at a reliable 6mS in the DAW - but the RME's Totalmix is latency free :) ).

    A descent digital mixer that you have "outgrown" can make a fantastic HP matrix mixer IMO. I could sell the Roland 2480 for $1800, I would still be out money considering I would have to buy another seperate analog mixer, and some descent standalone effects units to replace it (and I already have the extra convenience of Digital connections, 8 stereo effects, 8 linkable aux's, and compressors/EQ's on every channel).

  8. Big_D

    Big_D Well-Known Member

    Aug 21, 2004
    Quakertown PA
    I also use ASIO monitoring. My DAC's feed a Mackie 1620 (my beloved old CR1604 died last week) and the CR mix feeds a Samson HP amp with a verb patched in between. This way the verb is not in my mix and I'm not tying up any aux sends/returns with verbs. Each channel of the HP amp has it's own insert which I feed from the 1620's 4 Aux sends (1 insturment per Aux send). Each channel of the HP amp has a control to mix in more or less of that insturment giving each musician more or less of himself in the phones. As of now the aux feeds are dry but I'll soon patch some verbs to them as well. It works quite well and the guys who have used it are happy with the results. They have control over the mix of their insturment to the main mix, volume and EQ as well. Not bad for a box that cost a little over $100.
  9. TomF

    TomF Guest

    Thanks again for the replies! It's a great help :)

    Well ,I guess monitoring through a separate board is the way to go. If I understand this right, everyone here seems to be splitting there signals out of there converters to the DAW and a board. With the Pro Tools 002R ,I can't do this , so I would have to split the signals as it was suggested to me.

    This is what they said to do with the 002R. First your basic tracks,lets say Bass, Drums and a scratch guitar. Split the output of the preamps,one to the 002R and one to the board w/reverb on the effects sends and returns. Also,if I wanted to utilize the pre's in the board (if usable)for the drums for example,I could use either direct outs or bus from the board to the 002R. With this I would then send a signal to a headphone amp for monitoring to the talent with talkback from the board. Once the basic tracks are record , I would then take two outputs from the 002R and route them to two dedicate tracks on the board. Now when I start over dubbing, I would blend those two tracks from the 002R with the new tracks to be recorded.

    Sounds like alot of wiring !
    But does anyone think this sounds like a possiblility?
    I just don't know if will work with out having the gear to try it and I don't want to invest in the gear just to see if it will. Thats why I need the help of this forum. I have everything selected for the studio but when it came to selecting the software .That was the toughest decision to make.

    Anyway ,if this isn't feasible ,PLEASE let me know if theres a better route to take! or maybe I should go with something other then the 002R.

    Thanks again for the help! It's very much appreciated
  10. Dave62

    Dave62 Guest

    I find tracking music beds with the 128 sample latency, works fine and no one complains. When it comes time to do vocals, I then split the vocal mic output or the send from the pre and feed it to a little mackie mixer which is also receiving a stereo music send from Protools. This way the vocalist hears themselves with absolutely no latency and they control the levels. I have a small verb hooked to the 1202 as well. To overdub a line I copy the preceding song line to a track that is routed out to the singer so they can line it up.
  11. TomF

    TomF Guest

    Thanks for the reply Dave :D
    and also for confirming that ,using a board with the Pro Tools 002R for monitoring will work as suggested to me.

    Dave are you tracking Dry or adding plugs to the recorded tracks for monitoring at the 128?

    Thanks again
  12. Dave62

    Dave62 Guest

    Hi, I usually add a reverb send to wet the drums up a bit when tracking, but that is usally the only addition. When doing beds I just feed the band the same mix as I get in the control room so I know what they are hearing always. I also commit the sin of EQ'ing to disc on drum toms and high passing oheds, ride and hat.
    I had a project last week and I tried the 64 sample setting and it worked but the verb send had to go or it shut down.

    G5/2G ram/Dual 1.8/002R
  13. tundrkys

    tundrkys Guest

    So this isn't a PTLE thing then?? Latency free monitoring through Cubase isn't up to par yet??

    I thought most were doing fine with Cubase/Nuendo....or is this just the way you are use to working??
  14. TomF

    TomF Guest

    tundrkys Wrote:

    tundrkys ,
    No it isn't just PTLE ! I've been told its all the software. My Sweetwater rep and the Pro audio manager at my local Sam Ash store also confirmed this. The manager at the Sam Ash is the person who suggested I monitor through an analog board, so I can add effects to my monitoring (Latency Free).

    Kev is correct:


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