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  • Daisy Chaining Mixing Desks

    Hi,

    I have got myself some lovely bits of hardware and all running through a mixing desk wonderfully.

    I realised quite quickly that 8 channels are not enough so I have been looking into buying another mixer and daisy chaining. I keep getting conflicting advice on daisy chaining.

    One tech specialist advised that on no account would daisy chaining be recommended.

    Another tech specialist said "yeah go right ahead daisy chaining is the way forward", he advised me to use standard guitar leads from the sub (out) to the main (in).

    Another tech specialist said it could be done as a balanced connection with XLR leads (really? I had not heard of that before)

    and the final piece of advice from youtube suggested RCA though the tape in/out on the back of the mixers.

    I'm really confused!

    Does anyone have any practical and specific tried and tested guidance please? I'm using the Alto Live 802 and want to buy the Alto Live 1202 and use that as my main desk. The 802 will then be the sub mixer and run into the 1202. I understand that all my vocals will go directly into the main mixer and I should keep the sub mixer for the 'least important' elements and definitely not vocals. Both mixers will be side by side where I will be controlling them as part of the set.

    Thank you
    It's all an illusion.

    https://soundcloud.com/skyhighdiamonds

  • #2
    I thought using sub-mixers was a common thing...

    A friends set up (before he went totally in-the-box) always had a simple line mixer with the main stereo line outs of that going into a stereo in on his main mixer (it was still a fairly small mixer, had a few full/mic channels and a couple of dedicated stereo line inputs, level knob only). He ran his synths into the sub mixer and mics/misc equipment into the main one. I think he used RCA leads for that (or phono as people still call them but not phono as in record decks... )

    I guess each sub mixer will introduce more noise so best to keep them for stronger, line level signals.

    Tape in/outs are really just line in/outs so could be used if nothing else is available. I used them on my old mixer to connect to my PCs soundcard, effectively using the PC as a tape machine.

    HTH
    Latest release: never to be repeated

    Hearthis | Soundcloud

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    • #3
      Originally posted by GaryG View Post
      I thought using sub-mixers was a common thing...

      A friends set up (before he went totally in-the-box) always had a simple line mixer with the main stereo line outs of that going into a stereo in on his main mixer (it was still a fairly small mixer, had a few full/mic channels and a couple of dedicated stereo line inputs, level knob only). He ran his synths into the sub mixer and mics/misc equipment into the main one. I think he used RCA leads for that (or phono as people still call them but not phono as in record decks... )

      I guess each sub mixer will introduce more noise so best to keep them for stronger, line level signals.

      Tape in/outs are really just line in/outs so could be used if nothing else is available. I used them on my old mixer to connect to my PCs soundcard, effectively using the PC as a tape machine.

      HTH
      Thank you, I will read through this again and try to apply it practically, it does seem like there are a few options, I dont want to lose any channels (ideally). Id like to know of an absolute 'tried and tested' method that is recommended, ideally, but I guess I will need to try a few methods and seee which works best for my set up. Thanks Gary.
      It's all an illusion.

      https://soundcloud.com/skyhighdiamonds

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      • #4
        I had quick look at the specs of those mixers (wow, last mixer I bought twenty years ago, cost about the same with a fraction of the facilities they have... ) and you have options... 802 2 track out to 1202 2 track in seems the obvious way to go if you won't be using a recorder etc. Main out of the 802 to the 2 track in of the 1202 is another option (would need a couple of jack to rca cables/adapters). Or The 1202 has an aux return you could use but then you'd lose the facility to patch in an external reverb etc. And channel 11/12 could be used, wouldn't lose a mic but would lose a main input channel.

        I don't think you have much option using balanced connectors without losing a couple of mic channels (if they even accept line levels on the xlrs).

        You're not going to do any harm trying the "track 2", just line out to line in, any option to try this at a local store perhaps?


        Edit Oh yeah, ground loops. I don't know much about this (never having really done anything in a live situation) but connecting the two desks together means your joining their grounds together so you can sometimes get bad hum (kind of a low frequency feedback through the loop). Best ask about DI boxes and look at where the desks are plugged in, different supplies etc etc. Maybe just google it, much more knowledgeable people than me out there who can probably explain it with a nifty graphic or two ;)
        Last edited by GaryG; 02-24-2018, 02:46 AM.
        Latest release: never to be repeated

        Hearthis | Soundcloud

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        • #5
          "I had quick look at the specs of those mixers (wow, last mixer I bought twenty years ago, cost about the same with a fraction of the facilities they have... )"

          Yep, and just enough fx to add some subtle nuances and not saturate everything, which I would totally do, trying to keep the sounds quite clean currently. Panning & compression is very useful. The 1604 has sub mix channels too. Thank you so much for looking into this further!

          "2 track out to 1202 2 track in seems the obvious way to go if you won't be using a recorder etc."

          Yes, definitely seems the most likely.

          "out of the 802 to the 2 track in ofthe 1202 is another option (would need a couple of jack to rca cables/adapters)"

          Yep, that one came up on a youtube video as a standard chaining that could work well.

          "The 1202 has an aux return you could use but then you'd lose the facility to patch in an external reverb etc Edit Oh yeah, ground loops. I don't know much about this (never having really done anything in a live situation) but connecting the two desks together means your joining their grounds together so you can sometimes get bad hum (kind of a low-frequency feedback through the loop). Best ask about DI boxes and look at where the desks are plugged in, different supplies etc etc. Maybe just google it, much more knowledgeable people than me out there who can probably explain it with a nifty graphic or two ;)"

          Yes, I'm not sure I entirely want to lose the inputs for an effects unit in the future, it would work temporarily I think.

          "I don't think you have much option using balanced connectors without losing a couple of mic channels (if they even accept line levels on the xlrs). "

          This one seems the most likely and preferable to me as the connection is going to be more balanced due to the nature of xlr, but it's not one I have heard of or seen anyone else do.

          "Oh yeah, ground loops. I don't know much about this (never having really done anything in a live situation) but connecting the two desks together means your joining their grounds together so you can sometimes get bad hum (kind of a low frequency feedback through the loop). Best ask about DI boxes and look at where the desks are plugged in, different supplies etc etc. Maybe just google it, much more knowledgeable people than me out there who can probably explain it with a nifty graphic or two ;) "

          This is the bit that bothers me the most, freaks me out actually, could be really awful and unfixable and require so much preplanning and really is a matter of trying it out. However, I might be better saving up for the 16 or even 24 track and using the 802 as a practice or spare unit or selling it. Thank you again, you have been really helpful and I have googled it a lot but the quality of the guidance (and the images) isn't always great but I shall keep researching. Your time and words are appreciated.
          Last edited by Sky High Diamonds; 02-25-2018, 02:40 AM.
          It's all an illusion.

          https://soundcloud.com/skyhighdiamonds

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          • #6
            What in God's name will you be doing with a total of 20 straight audio channels?
            I'd like to give advice, but it depends on how you work, signal routing and such.
            - Keep it short -
            "The dumbest of people are the first to tell you."annode
            My Music

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            • #7
              Originally posted by annode View Post
              What in God's name will you be doing with a total of 20 straight audio channels?
              Being very excessive, over anxious & hoping other people will come & plug in too


              It's all an illusion.

              https://soundcloud.com/skyhighdiamonds

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