USB, AES/EBU,HDMI together?

Discussion in 'Accessories / Connections' started by vibrations1951, Jul 8, 2019.

  1. vibrations1951

    vibrations1951 Active Member

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    I need to run at least 2 boosted USB, 2- 8Channel AES and a DVI-D (or possibly an HDMI instead) cables together in about 30-35' of PVC.

    Will this create issues like crosstalk, inductance, speed reduction, clicks, clocking issues, bandwidth reduction, RF and other things I may not be aware of?

    USB: 1. Houston Controller to/fro MAC
    2. Pure 2 ADDA to/fro PC

    AES: Lynx Aurora 16 to/fro MAC
    1. Channels 1-8
    2. Channels 9-16

    DVI-D/HDMI: Mac to monitor screen

    *Note: I may end up needing to add 2 more boosted USB cables (keypad and mouse to Mac) as well as another cable for a monitor screen for the PC. Or I may go wireless with these?

    I continue to get bogged down in researching this as I quickly get lost in the technical stuff.

    Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
     
  2. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

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    These are all digital transmissions, so you have to be careful not to assign low-level crosstalk or other problems primarily associated with analogue transmission. That said, you could well run into difficulties in the cable lengths you mention, whether or not the cables are run side-by-side in a trunking.

    With AES, provided you use the correct type and impedance of cable, and are strict about termination, these sorts of transmission distances are easy.

    For USB, you talk about "boosted USB", but give no details about what you mean by this.

    DVI-D and HDMI don't like running large distances, especially on standard cabling. You will still get pictures through them, but I've seen definition loss and colour errors on installations where specified distance lengths have been exceeded.

    The solution to all this may be to look at systems that use a single Cat 6 Ethernet cable with multiplexers and de-multiplexers at each end. You would not need to post the AES through this system, but a multiplexed Ethernet system could handle the rest. Example. I'm not a video installer, but it's likely that some other contributer such as Dave Hawk (@dvdhawk) could give you some pointers.
     
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  3. vibrations1951

    vibrations1951 Active Member

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    Thanks Bos!
    For AES/EBU I intend to use Mogami 3162 8 Channel Digital Audio Snake Cable that I have and terminate with Redco Pan Pacific DH-25HP D-Sub 25 Pin MALE Crimp Style Connectors and DB25HM metal sheilds with Pan Pacific DH-PIN/M-MCH Macined MALE Dsub Crimp Pins.

    As far as the boosted USB cables I was thinking USB active cable with self powered hub, not bus powered. I do worry about having powerd hubs in the chase as they seem to be needed every 15 feet or less.

    I would try to purchase high quality DVI-D or HDMI @ 35'-40' maximim length. My primary monitor screen usage would be for DAW representaions (i.e. mixer, track, pluggin etc.). That said, my DAW happens to be Nuendo 4 and I might require good resolution for potential Post Production work someday, but highly unlikely.

    I'm not familiar at all with using Cat 6 and multiplexers and de-multiplexers but will definitely look into this next. David Hawk @dvdhawk , any thoughts?

    As you can possibly see, I'm using a "2 Box" system with 2 DAWS, 2 computers (Mac and PC) . I'm debating between a switcher of sorts between the PC and Mac for the same keypad and mouse for both at my desk.
    If this isn't feasible (I will be seeking support from a computer guy) then i may need to run another screen cable to a separate PC screen as well (not sure right at this moment what cable and connectors they are) for my Samplitude Pro x2 DAW in Box 2. So, perhaps the Cat 6, multiplexers, de-multiplexers system can accomate this as well if needed???

    This is all a steep learning curve for me and even though I may sound like I have knowledge and experience with all this, I am just barely hanaging in there.
    That said, I need to do this right and do love learning, despite my old brain and compromized retention.
     
  4. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

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  5. vibrations1951

    vibrations1951 Active Member

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    Hmmm. Something to consider! My dilemma with the screen cable is that the Mac has a DVI-D monitor output that needs to terminate at the screen that I want, which has an HDMI input.
    I was going to use an HDMI to DVI-D cable.

    If I understand you correctly, I could use an SDI to DVI-D on the computer end and an SDI to HDMI on the screen end with coax through the chase?
    AJA HDP3 3G-SDI to DVI-D and Audio Converter

    I'm assuming the coax will decrease my chances of signal degradation but will it introduce any kind of bad mojo to the rest of my cables in the chase (i.e. AES, powered usb) or visa versa? Should I run this in a separate chase to be safe?
     
  6. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

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    No, this is analogue thinking. Digital signals running in impedance-matched high-quality screened cables (e.g. 75 Ohm coax) do not radiate significantly outside the cable. They are likewise unaffected by similar signals in cables running alongside.
     
  7. vibrations1951

    vibrations1951 Active Member

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    Ah! OK good. Thanks!
     
  8. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

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    Yes, you can run coax through the chase.

    Converting from HDMI to DVI is just a matter of a passive connector adapter, though I don't know how it handles audio. I'm fairly certain that the SDI connection also carries audio because the adapter you link to suggest that.

    I doubt you'll have interference problems. A call to speak to a rep at B&H would likely clear up all of these questions.
     
  9. vibrations1951

    vibrations1951 Active Member

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    Great! Bos concurs above as well.
    I'm not so concerned about the transmission of audio but it could be a plus at some point (not necessary though).
    I would talk with a rep at B&H before moving forward with purchasing.
    Thanks so much for turning me on to the converter and coax strategy. Seems like a winner for me.
     
  10. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

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    I should note that there are some resolution limitations. Look at the tech details in the links.
     
  11. vibrations1951

    vibrations1951 Active Member

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    I looked at the tech details and could only reason out that you mean the 1080P etc. stuff? Sorry, I don't mean to be flip but that is outside of my present knowledge base...above my pay grade!
    So would this be a compromise to DAW representations or just if I were doing post production work ( which I really don't anticipate)?

    What I did notice is that my Mac is 10.8.1 I believe and it calls for 10.10, 10.11 or higher. Upgrade time here we go again...
     
  12. bouldersound

    bouldersound Real guitars are for old people. Well-Known Member

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    My main display resolution is 1680x1050, but my secondary display output on HDMI going to my home theater is 1080p (1920x1080).
     
  13. vibrations1951

    vibrations1951 Active Member

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    I have a computer friend/repair guy who has the screen I may need and will check with him about the resolution questions. I only have a vague understanding odf resolution parameters etc.
    I'll let you know how this settles out once I check with him.
    Thanks much!
     
  14. paulears

    paulears Well-Known Member

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    Crosstalk in analogue was hugely over talked about. For years, live sound folk have run multicore audio at mic level down 16/24/32 channel individual pairs, often with pretty feeble screening with no issues, despite everyone always saying how awful it would be. Worse, the line level mix output would go back down another pair - so we had around a Volt in one pair, and the same signal at microvolt level in the next pair - and while physics says there will be leakage, it's insignificant. Even more doom and gloom was promised when people started sending DMX, a harmonically rich nasty digital waveform, down an adjacent pair. Totally bad news - apart from the fact that we've been doing it for years with no issues whatsoever, so again - the physics is solid, but in practice it works fine. As for digital, forget the problems - We run video, audio, DMX and all kinds of data for much, much further than that. Cat 5/6 doesn't even have a screen and you can run parallel for significant distances with no crosstalk that I can quantify.

    Most technical failures are connectors, fractured cables, and using the wrong cable. 110Ohm digital cable can be swapped for ordinary mic cable and not be noticed for quite long lengths. Digital audio, is remarkably resilient to interference. As for the USB over the 30 ft distance - that's more prone to failure. USB just isn't that reliable for longer cable. I suspect that the issue really is that most USB cables are high resistance, variable impedance, and simply not very good cables. I have one 10m USB cable, sourced from China that seems to function really well. I bought another that didn't work at all! AES/EBU works pretty well on long runs with the right cable, but networked audio and video is now getting common. Blackmagic Design do some cheap and interesting converters, as long as you don't mind a few frames latency.

    Your list of problems are all going to be ticked really - will you get crosstalk, inductance, speed reduction, clicks, clocking issues, bandwidth reduction, RF on long runs?

    Crosstalk yes - when viewed on test equipment, in practice, no. Bandwidth reduction? Yes, mainly because of the cable inductance and capacitance creating a low pass filter. clicks and clocking issues? Only when you round off the square waves and the decoding end can't cope. Capacitance and Inductance are the key reasons.

    30 ft really isn't that far.
     
  15. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

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    Hi JP, it's nice to see you!

    I would not trust an HDMI cable over 20ft. - even then, it had better be a really good cable. HDMI is a digital signal, but like any other signal every foot of cable is working against you. The same goes for USB. With analog signals if it falls below a certrain threshold, quality may suffer, but you've still got a signal in most cases. With digital, once the signal strength falls below a certain threshold you get nothing. As you've discovered, over certain lengths you need an HDMI repeater(s) to boost the signal. I did a church projector installation several years ago where the projector was 25 ft. from the computer. A high quality cable worked beautifully for several months, but as components burned-in and voltages sagged slightly, it started losing signal - manifesting itself in ugly image pixelation followed by a totally black screen. I ended up taking the 25ft. cable out and putting in a 15ft. & 10ft. with an active repeater in the middle - which meant getting AC power to another location above the suspended ceiling. It's been working ever since.

    So far, I've had good luck with another installation at a very small church using an active 30ft. HDMI from the front of the platform to the flatscreen mounted on the wall behind the pulpit. It's got a standard HDMI connector on the TV end of the cable and it breaks out to an HDMI and a USB connector on the other end - using the USB for additional power.

    SDI
    I would also highly recommend the Blackmagic Design 3G Micro Converters as a good option for the HDMI video up to HD1080p. I regularly use them in pairs to convert HDMI into an SDI (Serial Digital Intereface) signal and then from SDI back to HDMI (1 converter at the computer end + 1 on the projector end). If you're using a tower computer with an available PCI-Express slot, they sell a video card with 1 HDMI and 1 SDI output. A good quality Belden high-bandwidth RG6 such as Belden 1694a or 1855a coax can easily transmit 1080p video at any frame rate up to 60Hz several hundred feet using the 3G Micro Converters. The Blackmagic 3G converters are small, reliable, and affordable ($39 - $59 each end). That's a small fraction the price of HDMI (4K) to Cat6 range extenders ($185 - $200 each end). Another cool feature on the receiver (SDI to HDMI) converter is the SDI passthru connector that allows you to mirror that same video signal on down the line to another monitor (or projector) in another location just by adding another receiver and more coax - and so on...

    SDI is common to broadcast quality video equipment these days. As you might guess, 3G is relative to the bitrate in Gbits / second and there are other standards for higher resolutions. If you need 4K video, longer range, or want to convert AES / EBU to SDI then you'll need to look at the Blackmagic Mini Converter line instead of the Micros.

    Over good RG-6 coax:
    • 3G is limited to HD 1080p @ 60Hz.
    • 6G is limited to 4k UHD 2160p @ 30Hz.
    • 12G is limited to 4k UHD 2160p @ 60Hz.
    With the right set up, a single SDI coaxial cable can carry uncompressed video at the 3G - 12G spec above PLUS embed up to 16 channels of uncompressed audio ( Ch. 15 & 16 often used for comms to camera operators ).


    HDBaseT/Cat6
    Another simple (but more expensive) approach that checks off a lot of your boxes, might be something along the lines of a Kramer TP-590TXR / TP-590RXR set up. It could do your HDMI 4k UHD 2160p@ 60Hz signal along with extending your USB 2.0 (+ stereo analog unbalanced reference audio / Ethernet / and infrared remote control signals) through a single very high-quality Cat6 (HDBaseT 2.0) cable to over 300ft (@ around $700 each end). My only concern here would be how high of a data transfer rate would you be requiring from the USB extender capability. You say USB2. for Pure 2 ADDA functionality. I'd want to double-check ALL of those specs rather than assume anything.


    CABLES
    In either case, you might want to consider buying the coaxial SDI cables and/or HDBaseT/Cat6A pre-made.

    The Kramer UniKat is ideal for this, and available ready made in various lengths from 2ft. - 100 meters. I don't mind making my own normal Cat5/6 cables. I'm fairly proficient at it, but the 23AWG U/FTP cable used for this level of performance is an absolute nightmare to terminate.

    Putting BNC connectors on the Belden, West Penn, or Gepco coax is a breeze IF you have the exact correct connector for the specific wire type and the right (expensive) tool to either crimp or compress the BNC connectors. I use Kings 3-piece BNC connectors and their crimping tool for the job. It's quite a racket they've got going there, but I can't argue with the speed and reliability of the finished connection.

    I'm sure that's more than some people will want to read, but I trust you'll want to do your research.
     
  16. vibrations1951

    vibrations1951 Active Member

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    Paulears, Thanks so much for that comprehensive response! I'm glad you addressed the analog fears I have accumulated over the years, contrary to my own personal experiences. In retrospect, issues usually arose due to poor/damaged connectors and cables or innadequate/compromised grounding. I've rarely had issues with AC lines, always being careful to keep at least 1' separation from LV long parallel runs and crossing at right angles when possible.

    I'm newer to digital cabling yet learning quickly right now. I'm hoping the Redco USB Active 33 or USB Repeat xx will work well for USB. I don't see issues with the AES/EBU. I'm not sure if that short a run and possibly using the converters will cause bothersome latency issues with the HDMI/DVI-D cabling and/converters....I hope. I'm also hoping that the capacitance and inductance issues are somewhat negligable.

    I'll do my best to post my results once I get my choices finalized and installed. Wish me luck and thank you again!
     
  17. vibrations1951

    vibrations1951 Active Member

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    Howdy Dave and thanks! I'm back at it and anxious to retire in 31 days from the day gig. Time to get more industrious and finish my build! (Probably another year if I can)
    You have given me lots more to ponder and research and I'm really grateful for that. It's going to take me a bit to absorb all this new information from this thread,

    I'll likely be back with more questions but for now I'm overwhelmed with this very steep learning curve!
    You are correct...I definitely will be doing more research and I'm so glad you took the time to share your valued knowledge and experience! Others may not want to read this but I sure did, and will need to over and over until it sinks in! I'm sure my research will help the process. This is like a graduate level cram course for me but I do love it! I'd rather know how to fish so to speak.

    I'm once again overwhelmed by the generosity, knowledge base, experience and willingness to share by so many on this forum! You and the rest have saved my skin many times, setting me straight and providing guidance like I can't seem to get anywhere else. I'm very isolated here in very rural Northern ME and this is my lifeline, really.
    I'll be back!
    namaste
     
  18. vibrations1951

    vibrations1951 Active Member

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    Dave
    I have used the USB with my PC and Samplitude pro x2 in the past and it seemed to work fine. It was a while ago so I checked the manual and it says "USB I/O: USB 2.0 Hi-Speed; Data stream up to 480Mbits/192kHz, 4 channels I/O playback/record, Type B" so I think I'm OK there.
    It was worth your mentioning and I'm glad I checked.
    Thanks again!
     
  19. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

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    Your USB 2.0 interface might run all day on a cable that is 10ft. or less in length and struggle at 20ft. There's a reason you don't see a lot of USB cables more than 15ft. The theoretical USB 2.0 limit is 16ft. 5in. (even between active hubs or repeaters). The Kramer gizmos I mentioned address the distance issue from Point A to Point B and act like a 1:4 hub, but I'd still want to talk to a tech. If I were spending that kind of money, I'd want some assurances from Kramer.

    My concern was more about the Kramer's USB extender functionality (which I'm sure is great for a remote mouse or whatever) but whether it's fast enough at that distance to support your ADDA data stream - that's the question.

    The Kramer USB is 2.0 compliant but its specs state:
    • Up to 127Mbps (out of max 480 USB) extended line rate bandwidth


    I'm usually extending video from the back of a sanctuary or auditorium to the front. I have no personal experience extending USB and I'm sure there are numerous other products to check out. The Blackbox gear that Boswell linked to seems quite good too. I've put in a couple of their products over the last couple years, but I'm not nearly as familiar with their product line. I can tell you they make a heck of a nice mechanical switching box for digital network cables.
     
  20. paulears

    paulears Well-Known Member

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    the number one rule in live sound audio books was always never run audio cables parallel to mains cables. Then every band started taping their stage power mains cable to the multi to avoid the interference caused by connecting the FOH to local mains power and getting terrible 50/60Hz hums. Running the mains taped to the audio cable cured the hum. We do theatre work as our main business and the ONLY cables to avoid are those powered by old (pre-90s) house dimmers, thyristors in particular, that still leak into the audio and create that characteristic weird whine as the lights dim out. I still keep well away from them, but now we squirt DMX down our old multis often more used for lights than sound, and have no qualms with mains, network, video over network and even LED lighting power feed all taped together as close as possible.
     
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