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-   -   General Venue Automation Question - (Maybe dumb question) (http://duc.avid.com/showthread.php?t=211927)

TwoPort 12-16-2007 01:08 PM

General Venue Automation Question - (Maybe dumb question)
(Buildup to the question)

Venue seems to have all the stuff that full board automation is made of. Motorized faders and everything else controlled by a computer! All that's needed is the "input capture" and "editing screens."

Venue / D-Show already deals with time code for snapshots. So....

(Now the question)

Is it foreseeable to fully control the Venue with "automation" vs. snap shots?

And all that's left to do (as though it's a simple task) is:
1. To create the input step recording paramaters in the D-Show software (I already have a name, it's D-Show 2.7) and a couple editing screens...
2. And reference it to time code. (It's as thought it's already done just by saying it.)

Steve McCale 12-19-2007 07:48 AM

Re: General Venue Automation Question - (Maybe dumb question
Dear TwoPort,

As you know, there are no dumb questions, only dumb answers. I'll try to avoid giving you the latter. In answer to your question: Nothing is impossible, given enough time and market demand, but run-time automation features on the VENUE platform are not in the foreseeable future.

VENUE is purpose built for live sound applications. The run-time automation features you describe are mainly for use in a studio environment. Although I am the first to agree that run-time automation can have it's uses in certain live applications, the truth is, they are rare.

If music is truly being played by real musicians, it is practically imposible for them to perfectly reproduce every nuance of a performace, every time they take the stage. That means that no matter how much we program our mix, we will still need to grab the fader and adjust the EQ from time to time, reducing the effectiveness of the automation. In a studio mix, you can be sure that the track won't change with the room acoustics. Also, if you are using tracks in the show, you can simply program the machine that is playing the tracks (Pro Tools) to perform whatever run-time automation moves you wish.

VENUE's snapshot automation gives you a powerful programming tool that can be set to follow time code very quickly and accurately. I regularly use it to set up intricate mixes that change on a phrase by phrase basis to give me a run-time effect. With EDIT mode, I can trim and update these snapshots quickly and easily giving me a powerful workflow that really works in a live environment. What's more, it can be scaled so anyone can take advantage of what it has to offer, from the smallest Church facility to major TV Shows, without career live sound guys being forced to learn stuff like "Trim Update" and "Overwrite".
The fact is, we are constantly bombarded by our Pro Tools brethren on how much they wish Pro Tools had VENUE's snapshot feature!

You should play around with using time code to trigger snapshots and use the cross-fade time to get the blending effects you may be looking for. You can even accomplish smooth panning effects by splitting the signal to 2 different channel strips, panning one left and one right then using a cross-fade between the two to create very cool special panning effects. I use this technique to create some powerful surround effects, panning stereo signals from the front to the back in precise coordination with time code coming from video clips.

Sorry for the long answer, but no one every accused me of being "brief".

Happy Programming!


TwoPort 12-19-2007 03:14 PM

Re: General Venue Automation Question - (Maybe dumb question
Your answer makes perfect sense on every level. Thank you also for such a candid response. The good news is that if live sound more generally demands that kind of automation (which seems less likely) the platform is there to fill the demand.

Also, I should stand up and admit that after posting the question I've been further digging into the Venue automation and I've come to realize that I have unfortunately significantly mis-underestimated (my slang term) Venue's existing automation capabilities and how I might be able to use them. You were nice enough for not scolding me for that. I'll apply myself to fully understand what it does before bringing this up again.....

eytan 12-20-2007 06:19 AM

Re: General Venue Automation Question - (Maybe dumb question
Hi Steve,

My question also has to do with the relations between VENUE and ProTools.

A broadcast (TV) customer of mine was asking me whether ProTools can read VENUE files (incuding snapshots)? I told him that it's not possible and I promised him that I will ask Digi about this.

He is recording his shows on HD. The show promoters would like to take the recordings to a ProTools studio in order to refine the mixes. They do not want to start the mixing session from scratch (it's time consuming), they want to start their mixing from the mix that was acheived on the VENUE during the show recording.

Is that something that you see happening in future ProTools versions? For my customer it would surely be valuable. Maybe such a feature could boost the use of VENUE in TV studios?

Rockpolice 12-20-2007 03:14 PM

Re: General Venue Automation Question - (Maybe dumb question
I'd say the first problems would come with the built in channel EQ and dynamics of D-Show. Perhaps the algorithms are straight from some digidesign plug- ins, so they could be easily recalled? But whenever they like to use sonnox, waves or whatever eq's or dynamics they prefer with their pro tools rigs, there's not much to do?

Steve McCale 12-21-2007 02:41 PM

Re: General Venue Automation Question - (Maybe dumb question
The concept of transfering mixes from VENUE to Pro Tools is one that everyone would like to make happen. However, it is important to remember that VENUE is completely different from Pro Tools, by design, and though it shares many of the same technologies and a lot of the same engineers, it is not the same program.

If you really think about what would be involved in making a Pro Tools system match what a VENUE rig does, you would see the complexity of the problem. 128 Inputs, 27 buss outs, EQ and Dynamics on every channel. Couple that with completely different control protocols and you start to see how difficult the problem really is. The idea that you will simply be able to load your VENUE file into a Pro Tools session or visa versa will likely never happen. The differences between the systems are simply too great.

What is a more practical solution is the ability to import certain sub-sets of data between the two systems. Currently, you can transfer any plug-in settings between VENUE and Pro Tools. As time goes on, we will try to include more types of data in the transfer list in an effort to make work flow between the two platforms even smoother.

One thing to note: The on-board channel dynamics and EQ sections are the basis from which the Pro Tools plug-ins, EQ-3 and Dyn-3 are built. Although you cannot directly copy presets, setting made on VENUE and manually transferred to instances of these plug-ins in Pro Tools should yield the same results.

Happy Programming and Merry Christmas!


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