DAW as live mixer suggestions

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DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by permanent hearing damage » Wed Sep 09, 2020 7:31 am

I know this can be done, but this is the first time i'll be doing it, aside from a monitor mix. unfortunately, i sold all of my decent outboard compressors years ago and my old soundcraft ghost is unusable. i know latency takes all of my UAD out of the running, so am i stuck with using Waves channel strips? if waves are to be believed, the scheps channel has 0 sample latency and the g channel has 1 sample latency (i'd guess that's with no modules/sections engaged?) . i do still have a working spx900, so hoping i can get some verb out of that.

this is for a 5 piece crusty/black metal band with 2 guitars - so i'm guessing 20 channels. i know i can't go as wild as i'd prefer with plugs, but stock eq and a few compressors will probably get the job done. though i often lean on distortion pretty heavily, so am most concerned with that. assuming samples are out the window, as well.

is there something i'm forgetting/not thinking of? this needs to sync to video, so i'd assume under 10 msec of latency would do the job

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Re: DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by digitaldrummer » Wed Sep 09, 2020 7:57 am

you mentioned UAD... do you have a UAD interface? and can you use the UAD Console mixer? I thought the whole idea of using the UAD console and putting it in real-time mode (meaning you are printing the effects) was that there was no perceivable latency? or come to think of it, you don't have to print the effects. I do this with reverb (for vocal tracks) all the time. works as long as I mute the channels in the DAW.
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Re: DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by permanent hearing damage » Wed Sep 09, 2020 8:23 am

sadly in this case, i do not have a UAD interface (antelope orion).

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Re: DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by Nick Sevilla » Wed Sep 09, 2020 10:50 am

permanent hearing damage wrote:
Wed Sep 09, 2020 8:23 am
sadly in this case, i do not have a UAD interface (antelope orion).
https://en.antelopeaudio.com/

Don't they have some sort of low latency thing going on now?
Howling at the neighbors. Hoping they have more mic cables.

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Re: DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by permanent hearing damage » Wed Sep 09, 2020 11:15 am

they do have a "near 0" latency mixer but only the newer interfaces offer it with any kind of processing - eq/dynamics/etc. i have an OG Orion 32, so I am SOL for that.

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Re: DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by drumsound » Wed Sep 09, 2020 8:18 pm

Can you rent an actual PA? There's gotta be someone with an X32 near you.

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Re: DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by A.David.MacKinnon » Wed Sep 09, 2020 9:04 pm

drumsound wrote:
Wed Sep 09, 2020 8:18 pm
Can you rent an actual PA? There's gotta be someone with an X32 near you.
This would be my answer as well. It does everything you need and will act as a multitrack recording interface as well.

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Re: DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by ashcat_lt » Thu Sep 10, 2020 5:42 pm

I'm so confused. You said (and I agree) that stock plugins would probably be fine, but then you're talking about 3rd party plugins from UAD and Waves? What you didn't mention is which DAW you're using, but I do know that with Reaper and a halfway decent machine, you'd ought to be able to get 20 tracks with EQ and compression running without any (extra) latency at all. You'd set the ASIO buffers lowish and only have the roundtrip latency to deal with, and that shouldn't be particularly noticeable. There's no reason that a natural phase EQ, compressor (without lookahead), distortion, or anything even similar should have to introduce its own latency unless it's trying to be way fancier than you really need for a "crusty black metal" group in a live environment.

Edit - I would suggest doing some testing with at least some kind of live input on every channel beforehand to make sure of what it can handle and dial in the buffer/block size settings and whatnot. You DO NOT want to hear buffer underruns through thousands of watts of PA.

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Re: DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by Magnetic Services » Fri Sep 11, 2020 3:15 pm

Seems like a DAW would just complicate things, why not use the onboard mixing firmware on a modern networked audio interface?

MOTU's AVB interfaces are really good, and they all have a built-in mixer that runs on the device itself, which you control in your browser on a laptop or mobile device. No DAW necessary.

I don't know if you're trying to buy anything, but this would be a good fit: https://motu.com/products/avb/stage-b16

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Re: DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by permanent hearing damage » Tue Sep 15, 2020 6:40 am

important things I failed to mention:
- this is a live streaming thing - no PA being used. just being done in my live room.
- this is a favor for friends who have lost a lot of work since COVID. doing it for free. not gonna rent anything.

as for DAWs, i'm most comfortable with cubase and planned on using that (v10 - pro), but can definitely get by with reaper or even pro tools - i have all 3 available.

i will absolutely have a chance to test things out. assuming i will treat it like i will a tracking mix, but with some extra things going on - some parallel processing, etc. i usually set my buffer to 256 samples and don't have any clicks or anything with 18-20 channels with basic processing happening. i know i can't treat this exactly like i would a mix, but was just fishing for things i might be overlooking or forgetting about. it's rare i even print a scratch vocal during tracking, and hoping to isolate the singer as best i can - i know vocals are going to be the trickiest here.

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Re: DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by permanent hearing damage » Tue Sep 15, 2020 6:43 am

i know i can use the antelope mixer, if i need to, but it's literally just faders. no eq or dynamics at all (it's an older interface - the Orion 32). not the end of the world, but would prefer to not tie my hands before i start

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Re: DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by digitaldrummer » Tue Sep 15, 2020 7:45 am

so it sounds like you are going to live stream and then also capture the recording to use later right?

so in that case, why not just use the Antelope mixer to get low/no latency feeds to headphones (assuming they will use them since no pa) and don't worry about EQ and getting them a perfect sound - it may already be better sounding then the normal live gig if they are wearing headphones? if they don't like the sound, try a different pair of headphones or IEMs? and move microphones or adjust pedals, amps, DIs, etc.

then create a bus to send to the live stream and strap your eqs and other processing across that output for the live stream. or maybe you can even create stems and process them separately then send them to another bus. the live stream is going to have latency anyway so should not matter (don't try to listen back real-time). then if you use it to create a mix later, then you can worry about processing every channel. I think the Antelope mixer can do this - I had one but its been several years so my memory is a little fuzzy.

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Re: DAW as live mixer suggestions

Post by permanent hearing damage » Tue Sep 15, 2020 8:28 am

i'd assume i would also mix it later, but just hoping to have the live feed sound decent, so wanted to have some processing. admittedly, still waiting to hear from the video person to see what they need from me. hell, maybe 50 msec will be fine?! i don't know, honestly. just trying to plan for lowest latency.

the older antelope mixer is just faders, pan pots and a phase button. no auxes, no multiple outputs. i can literally only send a single stereo mix from there. usually i just use it for a drum mix to send to my furman headphone mixers. i have tons of routing options on the Orion, but only one set of outputs offers some kind of mix unless it's coming directly from a DAW.

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