Pc outside control room

Discussion in 'Converters / Interfaces' started by Skapi, Nov 14, 2019.

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  1. Skapi

    Skapi Active Member

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    Hello!
    I need some help choosing the right equipment for my brand new studio.
    I am building a room that I will use to rehearse and record drums. My PC is located in another room, which is more or less 10 m far away.
    I have to choose an audio interface and a way to control everything while having my case far away, so my questions are:
    - Is it possible to have a 10 meters cable for my ai?
    - Do i Need something specific to avoid issues or latency?
    - Is there difference between firewire, thunderbolt and USB for my needs? I have to buy an interface so this will make me choose.

    Thanks for your help!
     
  2. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Distinguished Member

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    Which interface you get largely depends on budget, and how many inputs and outputs you need. With drums you will probably want at least 8 inputs.

    Since USB, firewire, and thunderbolt, cables won't reliably transmit audio between a pc and interface over a distance like 10m. Ethernet is the only one that will (dante/avb).

    This means you will keep your audio interface near your pc, and run audio cables from your mics, headphones, ect, to the interface. A 10-20m snake would generally work well.

    Then for your video and data cables, HDMI, usb keyboard, ect, would run from the studio to the pc as well. You will probably need an in-line booster for them to achieve maximum performance.

    The difference between USB, Thunderbolt, and Firewire, as far as distances are about the same, tho thunderbolt requires the shortest of the three. USB really doesn't like to do more than 8 channels of audio, but will handle 18 or so, just fine typically. I would avoid firewire since its been phased out and you wont find that on an interface or pc from the last 5 or 6 years. It is possible to get a firewire pcie card if you have a fw interface already. Thunderbolt offers high channel count as its main benefit.

    Latency is more about the audio drivers than the connection or interface, so a well designed USB interface and its drivers, like Focusrite or RME, will have similar latency specs to the thunderbolt interfaces like UA apollo, and Antelope. The exception is the Presonus quantum interface, which is thunderbolt, and has the lowest latency spec currently available.

    Thunderbolt is here to stay, but isn't nearly as common as USB yet. Its still reserved for mid/high end PC's and interfaces, and hasnt found its way into entry level yet, so its something to keep in mind if your computer doesn't have it. It may require an add on card, or a new mother board, or even motherboard and processor, depending on what you have for a computer right now.

    USB 2.0 vs 3.0 vs 3.1 is a non issue for connecting audio interfaces. Latency depends on the drivers not the connection. And we are not seeing interfaces offering track counts high enough to take advantage of the usb 3x bandwidth.
     
  3. Skapi

    Skapi Active Member

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    Thanks for your helpful answer! I was thinking about a focusrite clarett 8pre. Do you think is possible to use a 10m USB cable and have my audio interface far away from my PC so I can handle cables and connection better? Do I have to try and then, if is not working, buy an USB booster extension cable?
     
  4. pcrecord

    pcrecord Quality recording seeker ! Distinguished Member

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    No, don't try to extend USB connexions over 15ft.. It will crash and burn !! Seriously, it's not ment for this and audio data are very sensitive to transfer rates.
    VGA video can go up to 100ft without an issue, but not USB for keyb and mouse and audio interface.

    Your options are buy a snake for the amount of inputs and outputs you want to go in your room..
    AND
    You can use a tablet with a RDP app to remote the OS of the computer OR take a chance with a high quality bluetooth Keyb/mouse combo. but 10m is the max distance for most bluetooth peripherals..
     
  5. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

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    You really need to keep the audio interface at the studio end of things so you can get at the knobs you have to adjust when setting up a session.

    I have an AllDAQ USB isolator that I use for a different application - when I have to run an interface from a laptop computer. It keeps out most of the EMC rubbish emitted by the laptop and its ungrounded power supply. Using quality cabling, the isolator will run with 5m USB cables on the input and output side, so something like that may work for you if the isolator were positioned half way. However, if you have an interface that hopes to power itself from the USB 5V, you would need to get a separate mains power supply for that. Sadly, the manufacturers do not support daisy-chaining the isolator boxes to get greater distances.

    AllDAQ have just announced the USB 3.0 version of the isolator. I haven't tried this, since I have the USB 2.0 version.
     
  6. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Distinguished Member

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    Most interfaces come with a control panel app to set gains and (sometimes routing) right from the computer right? I know not all do, but the ua, focusrite stuff surely does.

    The OP didn't clarify if they could just move the pc into the studio room or not either.
     
  7. pcrecord

    pcrecord Quality recording seeker ! Distinguished Member

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    I think Bos is right, preamps on many interfaces have gain knobs, I haven't thought of this.
    Even my RME Fireface 800 front preamps have gain knobs..
    The focusrite clarett 8pre mentionned before does have front gain knobs.. so unless you always record the same instruments, you'd need to go back to the interface often.

    But your right K, some don't. Like the appolo x8p.. another price range tho..
     
  8. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Distinguished Member

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    I think they all gave gain knobs. But many of those are digitally controlled too. Even the Scarlett series can be "remotely" controlled, via the little control panel app. Grace's m108 is another example. Remote control differs from "standalone" mode where you can use an interface like the scarlett 18i20's pre amps without having it connected to a computer. It will still pass signal.

    Focusrite remote control app:
    https://focusrite.com/focusrite-control

    It makes total sense since gear is almost never accessable from the sweet spot of the listening position. And if it is, its actually degrading the audio path, ie console, desk, and rack reflections, ect.

    Digitally controllable encoders are more expensive to employ, and you need to code the little app, thats why you dont see them on some stuff. It would be great to just have a universal protocal so you could just have a gain knob on the daw mixer! Slowly things are catching up with digitally controlled analog gear like the flock audio patch bay (https://www.soundonsound.com/news/flock-audio-patch-analogue-patchbay-computer-control), millennia hv 8 ch preamp, and others.

    The remote controlled pres are more common on all in one interfaces vs standalone pres like the scarelett 8p ect.
     
  9. pcrecord

    pcrecord Quality recording seeker ! Distinguished Member

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    My old scarlett have a physical preamp circuit. What is controled by the software is the realtime mixer not the preamp section..
    I checked your link, this is an amazing news with the newer Clarett and scarlett remote.. Do we know if G2 has it or it's only G3 versions ?

    Oh yes, please send me the millennia hv 8 !! I do need it bad !! ;)
     
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  10. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Distinguished Member

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    Lol im in that club too! We can dream at least.

    I *think* its G2 and G3 that both have that capability. Im not 100% sure, but pretty sure. I was interested in G2 a while ago and seem to recall that as a feature.
     
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  11. pcrecord

    pcrecord Quality recording seeker ! Distinguished Member

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    Dream dream dream !
     
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  12. paulears

    paulears Well-Known Member

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    I've always wanted to try one of these
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01FQ88CHS/?tag=r06fa-20

    Not very expensive and 10m with USB3.0 I'm not sure if you could then hang a multiple USB adaptor on it, or if you'd need multiples of these? When I'm home at the end of January I'm going to rebuild my two room studio into a one room, plus small vocal booth and my idea was to put the noisy stuff in a small cupboard so this could work well for me - maybe I'll buy one and try it out, but ironically I just retired my Tascam rack mount interface and put my old Presonsus firewire one back into action - damn!
     
  13. pcrecord

    pcrecord Quality recording seeker ! Distinguished Member

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    The question that wasn't ask is why ? Why in the other room ?
    Are you going to mix in the other room where the pc is and you just want to record yourself ?
    If so, some DAW have limited remote control on apps. ( Samplitude support a remote app via wifi)
    In my case I have a control room and a recording room..
    When ever I want to record drums, I prepare everything in my control room, go to my drums and start the recording with the remote app from there.
    If it's because the PC is used for other member of the familly..
    I'd urge you to buy another one, having an unstable computer or someone deleting your precious projects by mistake isn't something you want to risk.
     
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    The New AT5047 Premier Studio Microphone Purity Transformed

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