MADI Sound Card

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MADI Sound Card

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MADI Sound Card

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This chapter describes the optional MADI audio card, for other input or output boards, please see the introductory chapter.

The MADI audio card allows to input and output audio (in accordance with the ASIO protocol) to and from Pandoras Box.

Soundcard 64ch MADI (RME HDSPe MADI)

 

audio-card_madi-with-extension-board

The MADI board carries:

MADI in / out (optical and coaxial)

Stereo Analog Out (Phones)

 

The included expansion board carries:

Word Clock in / out (BNC)

MIDI in / out (via four 5-pin DIN jacks)

 

 

The MADI interface offers to record and playback 24-bit audio with
- 64 channels at a sample rate of up to 48 kHz
- 32 channels at a sample rate of up to 96 kHz or
- 16 channels at a sample rate of up to 192 kHz.
Transmission is done via a single line, either coaxial with BNC plugs or by fiber cable. In both cases more than 100 m cable length can be achieved.

The word clock input is galvanically isolated via transformer and operates on both single and double speed signals automatically.

The MIDI solution offers two completely independent MIDI inputs and outputs via breakout cable (4 DIN sockets). A virtual MIDI port allows for a direct transmission of MIDI data over MADI.

Driver

The card drivers are preinstalled on your Server or Player hardware. All drivers can be found locally under C:\system and in the Download-Center where you can also check for updates.
The following picture shows the Windows Device Manager and a correctly installed 64ch MADI card in the folder "Audio-, Video and Gamecontroller".

win-dev-mgr_input-card_madi

Settings and TotalMix Dialog

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audio-card_open-systray
In the system tray of the taskbar you might find the hammer icon which opens the Settings dialog and the Mixer or FX icon which opens the TotalMix dialog. In case your taskbar is hidden due to the default behavior of the PB Menu, open the "Configuration" menu and click "Taskbar On".

The Configuration of the 64ch MADI card is done via its own settings dialog. It can be opened by clicking on the hammer symbol in the system tray.
The first image shows the dialog "Hammerfall DSP Settings" for the 64ch MADI card which offers the following:
- Input selection
- Level of analog I/Os
- Configuration of digital I/Os
- Synchronization behavior
- State of input and output
- Current sample rate
- Latency

Regarding the Clock Source drop-down list in the Clock Mode section, the 64ch MADI can be configured to use its own clock (Internal = Master), or one of the input signals (Word, MADI, TCO, Sync In). If the selected source is not available (NoLock), the unit will change to the next available one (this behaviour is called AutoSync). If none is available then the internal clock is used. The card is equipped with SteadyClock(TM), RME's sync and clock technology. With this, the device becomes a sync reference for other devices too. SteadyClock refreshes clock signals, removes jitter, and takes permanent care of optimal conversion quality. SteadyClock allows the MADI card to control the sample rate freely on its own.
The Expansion Board's bracket has the word clock input and output. Next to the input BNC socket, a green LED displays the word clock input's LOCK state. Between the BNC sockets, 75 Ohm word clock termination can be activated and verified by a yellow LED.

Any changes made in the Settings dialog are applied immediately - confirmation (e.g. by clicking on OK or exiting the dialog) is not required. However, settings should not be changed during playback or record if it can be avoided, as this can cause unwanted noises. Also, please note that even in 'Stop' mode, several programs keep the recording and playback devices open, which means that any new settings might not be applied immediately. The status displays at the bottom of the dialog box give the user precise information about the current status of the system, and the status of all digital signals.

The digital real-time mixer, the "Hammerfall DSP Mixer" (TotalMix) can be opened by clicking on the mixer icon in the system tray.
TotalMix allows for practically unlimited mixing and routing operations, with all inputs and playback channels simultaneously, to any hardware outputs. Every single input channel, playback channel and hardware output features a Peak and RMS level meter, calculated in hardware (hardware output is Peak only).

For more information about the Settings and Mixer dialog please see the audio card's manual: http://www.rme-audio.de/download/hdspemadi_e.pdf

Working with Audio In- and Outputs in Pandoras Box

To work with audio in- and outputs requires that the sound card is set up in the ASIO Audio section in the Configuration Tab. The chapter ASIO Audio section explains in detail how to do so and includes information regarding synchronization, timecode, sample rate setup and sample accurate audio and master volume.

To output ASIO audio from Pandoras Box, simply assign audio files from the Project tab to the dedicated Audio tracks in the Device Tree or Sequence. Audio tracks allow to playback ASIO wav files and inputs while being synchronized to a master clock. The tracks play mono and stereo PCM Wave files (16 or 24 bit) and they refer to the sample rate set in the Configuration tab. In order to assign a track to a specific audio channel of your ASIO sound card, please refer to the Track Inspector.

Please see the Product Overview to see how many audio tracks are offered for a Manager, Player and Server license. Note that in a larger master-client-setup it is possible to use either a single audio card or multiple ones and it is possible to use the audio card from the Master or from the Client.

assets_live-inputs_madiTo input audio, you just need to go to the Asset tab > local (or Client) > folder "Live Inputs" > folder "Direct Show" and drag the input to the Project tab. Then assign the live input to an audio track in the Device Tree the same way as using wave files.

It is also possible to record the incoming signal. However, the Client computer must then be started in stand-alone mode, that is with the Pandoras Box Master software. Please see the chapter " Video Recording" for more information.