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HORUS/HAPI viable alternatives
Old 4 weeks ago
  #1
Here for the gear
HORUS/HAPI viable alternatives

I'm wondering if anyone has experience doing classical location recording with an AoIP system other than Merging Tech that they were pleased with.

I've researched Dante and AVB pretty extensively, and I have trouble coming up with a collection of network devices that will offer both good, remotely-operated mic pres and an output for a TALKBACK speaker.

I'm interested in the Dante mic pres from Millennia and Grace, but those do not have any outputs for my talkback speaker.

I'm not that interested in the RME AVB options because I'm not wild about their mic pres (I know many people like them, and that they're commonly used in major classical recordings).

I've been using a Metric Halo 3d system recently, but the controller software failed a couple times in some sessions last week, so I'm feeling ready to move on. I've also had some instances of intense, seemingly inexplicable digital noise with this system(?).

I've used a Merging system and have enjoyed it, but the only drawback I see is that you have to invest in a card with 8 outputs just to have a single output for the talkback.

Any opinions on these or other options I'm missing? Thanks!

Last edited by YoRumsfield; 4 weeks ago at 05:03 PM.. Reason: typos
Old 4 weeks ago
  #2
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king2070lplaya's Avatar
I personally have an AVB setup with Motu interfaces which I like a lot. definitely preamp interfaces with outputs available here.

At work we use Dante, with various interfaces from Focusrite, Grace, Millennia, DAD, Tascam, Sound Devices, Yamaha, lots of things all networked together. We even have Dante-enabled Fostex speakers for TB, though also some older ones we can feed from other interfaces line-outs.

There's gotta be something on Dante to fit the bill, maybe the Grace 108 or the Aurora (n)?
Old 4 weeks ago
  #3
Here for the gear
 
The Grace m108 has a stereo headphone output that is accessible from the Dante network.

We built a remote rack with 2x m108s. We split the headphone output of one of them and route one channel to a Fostex 6301 that is mounted in the rack for talkback. The other channel is wired to a 1/4" jack on a rack panel and used for a second talkback speaker or other feed as needed.

The headphone out on the second m108 carries the mix from our console for headphone monitoring from the stage. This also allows a separate talkback into the headphones of a second engineer or assistant who is out on the stage moving mics.

We have the Dante and control networks for the m108s on separate subnets but the same physical LAN. All four ports are patched to an ethernet switch in the rack and we run a single network cable back to our console and DAW (via RME Digiface Dante)

I know some have encountered issues running remote control and Dante on the same network with these preamps but it's working well for us. I have found the browser-based remote more reliable than the dedicated remote app.

-Matt
Old 4 weeks ago | Show parent
  #4
Here for the gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by soundmonkey ➑️
The Grace m108 has a stereo headphone output that is accessible from the Dante network.

We built a remote rack with 2x m108s. We split the headphone output of one of them and route one channel to a Fostex 6301 that is mounted in the rack for talkback. The other channel is wired to a 1/4" jack on a rack panel and used for a second talkback speaker or other feed as needed.

The headphone out on the second m108 carries the mix from our console for headphone monitoring from the stage. This also allows a separate talkback into the headphones of a second engineer or assistant who is out on the stage moving mics.

We have the Dante and control networks for the m108s on separate subnets but the same physical LAN. All four ports are patched to an ethernet switch in the rack and we run a single network cable back to our console and DAW (via RME Digiface Dante)

I know some have encountered issues running remote control and Dante on the same network with these preamps but it's working well for us. I have found the browser-based remote more reliable than the dedicated remote app.

-Matt
Matt: thanks for this. two m108's is one option that I've been seriously considering. I really like the sound of Grace pres and converters. Great to hear that you have the talkback working through the headphone port; that opens up some options for sure.
Old 4 weeks ago | Show parent
  #5
Here for the gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by king2070lplaya ➑️
I personally have an AVB setup with Motu interfaces which I like a lot. definitely preamp interfaces with outputs available here.

At work we use Dante, with various interfaces from Focusrite, Grace, Millennia, DAD, Tascam, Sound Devices, Yamaha, lots of things all networked together. We even have Dante-enabled Fostex speakers for TB, though also some older ones we can feed from other interfaces line-outs.

There's gotta be something on Dante to fit the bill, maybe the Grace 108 or the Aurora (n)?
Thanks Kevin. I had a MOTU 828mkii way back when, and was always happy with it at that time. I should look into their latest stuff for sure.
Old 4 weeks ago
  #6
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by YoRumsfield ➑️
I'm wondering if anyone has experience doing classical location recording with an AoIP system other than Merging Tech that they were pleased with.

I've used a Merging system and have enjoyed it, but the only drawback I see is that you have to invest in a card with 8 outputs just to have a single output for the talkback.
I do location classical and love the Merging system. Talkback can be arranged from the headphone output of the stage Hapi or Horus, or from an AES output to a DAC on stage, I use an old Benchmark DAC-1 sometimes. There are a few options. It all works so well.

Last edited by David Spearritt; 4 weeks ago at 10:51 PM..
Old 4 weeks ago
  #7
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
Using DAD AX32 as a main unit.
Great remote controlled preamps, all possible interfaces can be installed - Dante, MADI, AES, ProTools.
My system is Dante based.
Very solid.

And you can use Audinate AVIO DA adapter for talkback line, if necessary.

Norm

Last edited by [email protected]; 4 weeks ago at 06:46 AM..
Old 4 weeks ago
  #8
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RobAnderson's Avatar
 
15 Reviews written
🎧 10 years
I've used Dante with all kinds of boxes, for classical and other recording.

I have a Ferrofish A32 Dante at the heart of my rack - it lets me go from just about anything to Dante; and from Dante to just about anything else. Its converters are not the best of the best, but it's usable; plus it can take MADI or ADAT from other converters (a feature I use quite a bit).

It has 32 ins and outs Analog, 32 ins and outs ADAT, 64 of MADI and Dante I/O.

Add Dante Virtual Soundcard and/or Dante Via and mix to taste.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #9
dtf
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
I would consider the Prodigy.mc by DirectOut.
Old 3 weeks ago | Show parent
  #10
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dizziness's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by YoRumsfield ➑️
Matt: thanks for this. two m108's is one option that I've been seriously considering. I really like the sound of Grace pres and converters. Great to hear that you have the talkback working through the headphone port; that opens up some options for sure.
I run two m108 and use the headphone out for on-stage monitor/headphone mix with talkback. I’ll probably grab one of those little Dante Fostex monitors at some point.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #11
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tourtelot's Avatar
 
1 Review written
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Once you have decided that Dante is the way to go (I have!) then there are thousands of possible solutions to your talkback issue.

I run (a bunch of) Grace m108s and love their sound and how flawless they are on my AoIP network.

Talkback for me comes via the outputs of the Allen & Heath DT168 Dante stage box (16 inputs and 8 outputs) as well as cueing, stage P/B and conductor P/L.

But that's easy for me because I use an A&H SQ6 for a control room monitor mixer and the T/B just goes where I assign it via Dante Controller. But you could use something as simple as a Dante enabled mic preamp (or Avio input if you already have something like a Sound Devices mic amp) and an Avio output for not a lot of money. Easy. (Oh and Audio Technica even makes a Dante enable Talkback mic base that gives you line-level out over the network. Add an Avio and a powered speaker and Bob's your uncle)

Also, if you decide on the Dante approach, someday soon, you will have a dozen different ways to present T/B (and anything else your heart desires) to the stage. Because there are, did I already say this, thousands of Dante enabled devices from a host of manufacturers that will integrate seamlessly with your network.

Unlike Ravenna, there will be no limitations to what you can attach to the network.

Dante Super-fan-boy here, but it works, works great, and has caused me no breakdowns no matter how complex I make the rig.

D.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #12
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Keeping with Merging, there is the Anubis with it's own built-in talkback mic on the unit.

The new Music Mission firmware I think has easy set-up for multiple talk-back routings for band members (either via the Anubis's i/o or via the Hapi/Horus. I think I saw that on the promo video .
Old 3 weeks ago | Show parent
  #13
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by tourtelot ➑️
Once you have decided that Dante is the way to go (I have!) then there are thousands of possible solutions to your talkback issue.
Agreed, for those who can operate within its rate limitations. For those desiring to record in DSD, or 352.8/384KHz PCM, or prefer the Merging sound, the Horus/Hapi "alternatives" and networks provide no support.

Tom
Old 3 weeks ago | Show parent
  #14
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tourtelot's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by tailspn ➑️
For those desiring to record in DSD, or 352.8/384KHz PCM, or prefer the Merging sound, the Horus/Hapi "alternatives" and networks provide no support.

Tom
Very true.

D.
Old 3 weeks ago | Show parent
  #15
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1 Review written
🎧 5 years
i've been using madi-based studer vista desks/d23m/d2m/csb remotely controlled stage boxes and a rme madiface xt (or madiface usb on smaller projects) for years.

a d21m gives you 44 transformer balanced mic/line inputs (plus 44 direct outputs) and 8 line outputs in 3he (plus redudant madi at standard speed); the frames can get configured in many other ways, including aoip cards.

i still vastly prefer madi over any aoip format (which i have been using for 20 years now): i cannot recall how often they caused issues while madi just keeps working without any headaches but then, the format doesn't matter much if you don't have to interface with broadcasters or large studio setups much and use just a (more or less) closed system.

i did compared studer to merging and clearly prefer the former in terms of sonic footprint, certainly when using large channel count - i also prefer dad, millennia, grace design or stagetec over merging, even the old yamaha ad8hr (via ethersound)...
Old 3 weeks ago | Show parent
  #16
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Yannick's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah ➑️
i did compared studer to merging and clearly prefer the former in terms of sonic footprint, certainly when using large channel count - i also prefer dad, millennia, grace design or stagetec over merging, even the old yamaha ad8hr (via ethersound)...
You clearly did not experience the latest generation IO cards Merging has been putting out …

Dad, Grace, millennia are clearly less natural sounding to me. Especially on bigger track counts.
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #17
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yannick ➑️
You clearly did not experience the latest generation IO cards Merging has been putting out …

Dad, Grace, millennia are clearly less natural sounding to me. Especially on bigger track counts.
i did check them out and even compared the two generations of cards: although they measure very good in the spectral domain, at least to my ears, they do harm the integrity/body of the sound, at least compared to my beloved studer (or stagetec or ssl) preamps/converters.

(i admit that i haven't used them on large projects though and of course we're talking about very minor differences/artefacts anyway: pretty much any modern gear allows to get stellar results - convenience/availability/scalabilty/workflow/cost/integration etc. may be major considerations when selecting new gear...)
Old 2 weeks ago
  #18
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Yannick's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
That is not what we hear, nor my clients. Since we have the newest cards, soundchecks have been increasingly shorter. That is with real musicians, who know how they should sound.

I cannot imagine how they would harm the body of the sound, as they are much closer than our beloved grace preamps.
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #19
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 5 years
of course we're talking about professional use! - anyway, gimme a shout if you ever want to compare them to the studer preamps/converters...

...and i bet i beat you on soundcheck time when using the desk for recording purposes (preamp control/monitoring) rather than chasing a mouse :-)
Old 2 weeks ago
  #20
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🎧 15 years
I am sorry, but the discussion was not about madi, but aoip. Not about using big hardware versus mouse. In my use case, a big desk would be a complete waste of time and resources. Not to mention my back.

Is there another use besides professional for this type of equipment ? You lost me there.
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #21
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1 Review written
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yannick ➑️
I am sorry, but the discussion was not about madi, but aoip. Not about using big hardware versus mouse. In my use case, a big desk would be a complete waste of time and resources. Not to mention my back.

Is there another use besides professional for this type of equipment ? You lost me there.
we're indeed not on the same page:
- modern (multiplexed) madi systems rival or outperform aoip systems....
- i agree one does not need a large desk to control a few dozen of preamps but it's faster to get a mix going.
- i thought you were alluding to non-professional use by underlining the fact that you are working with professionals - nevermind.
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #22
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah ➑️
- modern (multiplexed) madi systems rival or outperform aoip systems....
In what sense? More bandwidth? Its only data.
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #23
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1 Review written
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by David Spearritt ➑️
In what sense? More bandwidth? Its only data.
more channels, more easy patching/routing/interfacing with third party/live sound, more easy trouble shooting, no software issues - comes at higher costs though...
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #24
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah ➑️
more channels, more easy patching/routing/interfacing with third party/live sound, more easy trouble shooting, no software issues - comes at higher costs though...
So ergonomics but not sonics or bandwidth. Fair enough. But this should improve over time for AoIP.
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #25
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by David Spearritt ➑️
So ergonomics but not sonics or bandwidth. Fair enough. But this should improve over time for AoIP.
yep, 'ergonomics'...

...which i highly value especially in critical/high pressure situations as they can make or breake (well, not really: slow down) a production.

___


i've been using aoip (along with madi) since cobranet became available and i still regularly have to interface with it occasionaly - and unfortunately also with most any other format which came along since then...

...so i'm a bit sceptical: imo the different formats have competed with each other more in terms of market penetration than in terms of technical improvement.
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #26
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah ➑️
...so i'm a bit sceptical: imo the different formats have competed with each other more in terms of market penetration than in terms of technical improvement.
Yes, it plagues the IT industry overall. Silos of crap and monopoly instead of group think. Everyone trying to create their own "standard" with a hope of cornering a market.

Why I prefer open source Ravenna over Dante.
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #27
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1 Review written
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by David Spearritt ➑️
Why I prefer open source Ravenna over Dante.
so do i but dante (along with madi) is way more commonplace in live sound with which i regularly have to interface - i fear i'll have to keep using various cards in my hubs and bring specific format converters to shows for many years to come!

cobranet, rocknet, ethersound, reac, hypermac, aviom, avb, ravenna, dante - do i miss anything?!
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #28
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tourtelot's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by David Spearritt ➑️
Why I prefer open source Ravenna over Dante.
Ha. "Open source" meaning that you have no choice but Merging hardware to put on your network? Doesn't sound very open to me.

D.
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #29
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Yannick's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by deedeeyeah ➑️
yep, 'ergonomics'...

...which i highly value especially in critical/high pressure situations as they can make or breake (well, not really: slow down) a production.

___


i've been using aoip (along with madi) since cobranet became available and i still regularly have to interface with it occasionaly - and unfortunately also with most any other format which came along since then...

...so i'm a bit sceptical: imo the different formats have competed with each other more in terms of market penetration than in terms of technical improvement.
Again, as per the OP, also considering ergonomics, a modern AoIP system is superior. In many places anyway.

Over here, it much more common to find an installed point-to-point ethernet cable than optical (NEVER !).

The OP was asking about mobile classical recording, plus talkback, not about interfacing with live sound and existing PA systems etc.

A self-contained, fully functioning AoIP mobile rig, will ALWAYS work after just pluggin in the power and the 1 ethernet cable.

This discussion about MADI being superior may be extremely valid in your context, but in this thread is completely pointless.

By the way, Ravenna carries 384 audio channels over one connection, I have never seen MADI do that ?
Old 2 weeks ago | Show parent
  #30
Gear Guru
 
1 Review written
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yannick ➑️
Again, as per the OP, also considering ergonomics, a modern AoIP system is superior. In many places anyway.

Over here, it much more common to find an installed point-to-point ethernet cable than optical (NEVER !).

The OP was asking about mobile classical recording, plus talkback, not about interfacing with live sound and existing PA systems etc.

A self-contained, fully functioning AoIP mobile rig, will ALWAYS work after just pluggin in the power and the 1 ethernet cable.

This discussion about MADI being superior may be extremely valid in your context, but in this thread is completely pointless.

By the way, Ravenna carries 384 audio channels over one connection, I have never seen MADI do that ?
don't wanna turn this into a madi vs aoip battle but it seems you're not much aware of developments in madi:

there has long been madi over ethernet and multiplexed madi can carry isane amounts of channels via fiber: mine does 1536 channel per fiber...

...and while the format may indeed not matter as long as you are fully self contained, it does matter quite a bit when broadcasting and/or interfacing with live sound: in both areas, madi has still a very strong standing (and i do both, in addition to location recording).

there's no denying that a even a small desk lets you dial in headphone mixes for conductor, soloists, video departement etc. faster, that you then can easily move between rehearsing, recording and mixing or actually build your mix while you're still recording which saves time or enables live broadcasting in the first place.

works with any genre btw :-)

of course you can use any front end for recording alone but it's more convenient to use an integrated system which either lets you control the stagebox via pc, ipad etc. or then via desk - or both for redundancy which again may be a requirement in some situations.

Last edited by deedeeyeah; 2 weeks ago at 09:04 AM..
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