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Tech Focus: Audio Consoles, Part 2 - Diversity Marks Solutions for Remote Production

05/06/2024

Tech Focus: Audio Consoles, Part 2 - Diversity Marks Solutions for Remote Production Broadcasters have lots of choices of sizes and functions, IP and cloud operation By Dan Daley, Audio Editor

Wednesday, June 5, 2024 - 7:00 am

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Story Highlights

Remote audio-mixing consoles for broadcast are a relatively rarefied category at the high end of the market, but it's an increasingly diverse group, thanks not only to demand for consoles of various sizes and functions but also to the growing embrace of IP and cloud functionality and operation. Here's an overview of leading products on the market.

Click here for Tech Focus: Audio Consoles, Part 1 - The Cloud Brings Changes to the Linchpin of Broadcast Sound.

Calrec Calrec Impulse mixer

Slated to be launched at IBC in September, the ImpulseV virtualized cloud mixer will be controllable from Calrec's multiple-award-winning approach to audio mixing: Argo Q and Argo S configurable control surfaces, with 256 DSP paths and immersive path formats up to 7.1.4. The new reduced-height Argo S, which won an NAB 2024 Product of the Year Award, is immediately attractive for compact installation sites, such as outside broadcast, where space is at a premium.

Calrec's Assist web GUI is implemented on Argo Q and Argo S control surfaces, as well as on Apollo, Artemis, and Type R consoles to provide control from a remote location. It's also available with Calrec's RP1 remote-production solution, which continues to provide full broadcast capabilities at a remote venue from an established studio environment.

Calrec continues to target more-attainable IP, offering a range of options to suit all budget and space requirements. It has introduced a smaller yet powerful, cost-effective ST 2110 version of its established ImPulse. Designed for small to medium-size single-mixer applications, ImPulse1 is a compact, 1RU audio-processing/routing engine with an optional second core for redundancy and a new 128-input channel DSP pack at an entry-level price. ImPulse1 works with Argo Q and Argo S control surfaces and/or Calrec Assist. The IP-based ImPulse core has a native ST 2110 IP backbone and a defined upgrade path for broadcasters to transfer to IP infrastructures. ImPulse is compatible with existing Argo Q, Argo S, Apollo, and Artemis control surfaces and is NMOS-compliant, which is critical to the unified workflow of products from different manufacturers. For broadcasters already producing live content in immersive formats over such platforms as MPEG-H and Dolby Atmos, ImPulse also provides 3D immersive-path widths and panning, with full monitoring and metering, height, and 3D pan controls. calrec.com/

Lawo Lawo mc 96 mixing console

Lawo's mc mixing consoles - mc 96, mc 56, mc 36 xp, and mc 36 - are focused on IP-based broadcast, AV, and live production. Support for open standards - SMPTE ST 2110, RAVENNA, AES67 - means that WAN remote-production scenarios are supported as standard. The mc consoles integrate with HOME, Lawo's management platform for IP-based media infrastructures, as well as with third-party vendors that support the HOME API. The mc audio-production consoles can be powered by the A__UHD Core DSP engine or the HOME mc DSP app.

Distributed-production approaches involving two or more audio engineers working from adjacent or geographically separated locations can be provided over secure LAN or WAN connections, regardless of whether operators prefer a data-center-style resource-pooling strategy, a globally scattered network of A__UHD Core units or slices, or audio processing instantiated on a standard server for productions involving a mix of server- or cloud-based video and audio processing. Pool DSP software licenses allow operators to split the 1,024 DSP channels of a single A__UHD Core across up to 32 console slices in a range of configurations for physical, virtual, and headless (automation-driven) control.

Designed for mc mixing consoles and controllable from Lawo's new crystal broadcast mixers as well as via its mxGUI software, the HOME mc DSP App functions as a virtual mixing system at the press of a button wherever audio processing is required fast. It seamlessly integrates with the HOME Apps platform, which hosts various types of video processing on the same shared COTS hardware.

A complete range of IP-based audio edge devices also is available from Lawo. For instance, the A__stage series accommodates high-channel-count I/O in a variety of formats (analog, AES3 digital, MADI), and single-format A__line devices are usually used in flypacks, mobile remote setups, and locations where only a few sources and destinations are used. Power Core RP is a modular IP-based I/O node with on-board WAN capability for remote-production scenarios, offering low-latency on-location monitoring.

All Lawo consoles support automation and studio/remote management applications, including Ember+ and the vendor-agnostic VSM IP broadcast-control system. For scripted remote productions, the Mix Kitchen approach allows A1 engineers to work from home or somewhere on the road. www.lawo.com/

Evertz Evertz's Studer Vista 5 M3 digital mixing console

Evertz continues to expand its Studer Audio portfolio, with new features and capabilities. Since acquiring Studer in 2021, Evertz has integrated that brand's Vista digital mixing consoles into its own Software Defined Video Networking (SDVN) platform. The consoles now support SMPTE ST 2110, making them an important addition to Evertz's live-production workflows. This year, the company integrated Vista with its DreamCatcher BRAVO Studio virtual-production-control suite, providing virtual access to a full mixing console whether working on-premises or through the cloud. For remote production, Evertz has expanded the Vista controls to its softwar
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