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Wish List: Features I'd Love To Have Seen

 

 

Since the DA7 is long out of production, this list is never gonna happen. They were written before 2000, so by now some of them exist in other mixers – or aren't really necessary any more.

Enhanced Signal Routing

An enhanced Input Matrix that would allow routing of a signal to any of the 32 channel faders, without the group-of-8 limitation currently imposed in the Input MTX window. But I've been told this is a hardware limitation.

Routing of a signal into the sidechain of the dynamics for another channel. Using adjacent channels is acceptable if general routing isn't easy. (I tried unsuccessfully to work around this using a stereo-linked pair. I later heard that de-essing can be done this way, using NON-stereo linked channels. I haven't tried it.)

The ability to route buses and LR to AUX sends (e.g. Buses 1/2 to analog Aux 5/6), so this routing could be used as an insert send without a Slot3 card. Thus:

  • Route the LR Mix to Bus 1/2
  • Route Bus 1/2 to Aux 5/6
  • Route (externally) to an analog program compressor
  • Return the processed analog signal to two available analog inputs
  • Assign those two inputs to LR Main
  • Monitor LR main (hence the processed program)
  • Record LR Main to 2Track-A

This routing would allow an easy Main Insert function without requiring the ADDA or AES card. Routing via an Aux Send would impose a 20-bit limitation, but this is acceptable given the cost savings. (Routing out via Monitor B would give a 24-bit D/A conversion, but this makes sense ONLY if the routing bypasses Mon B level knob and source-selection switches.)

Having aux sends on the aux returns would allow routing of effects to other aux sends. This is useful to add FX to a vocalist's headphone mix, when the phone cue mix is fed from another aux send.

Operational Enhancements

A settable option that causes SOLO to do a SELECT for a channel. This could be an enhancement to the AUTO CHANNEL SELECT option: user chooses FADER or SOLO or both. I find I usually SOLO a channel to tweak it, and I often forget to SELECT it too!

An "all pans" view screen, showing all channel pans simultaneously.

Dynamics Enhancements

Allow stereo-link options (i.e. both, left, right) in the Dynamics, EVEN IF the channels aren't linked. This is one way to work around sidechain access. You mult the signal to two channels, EQ the left copy, then its GR gets applied to the right copy. Only the right copy gets routed to the mix; the left copy is only used to trigger GR by use of EQ. This process can be chained several levels to get multiband compression.

Additional dynamics options. It would be nice to have a soft knee, selectable as an option. If possible, a program-dependent "automatic" attack/release setting might be useful for many source signals. I have heard that this would require too much DSP power.

Hold time for gates, so they wait before closing.

Dynamics on aux sends and returns. Then we can compress an aux send to avoid overloading an FX unit, and gate or compress noisy FX unit returns.

Slot 3 INSert mode

For Slot 3, I'd really like INSert mode to allow inserting on any channel, not just buses/auxes/LR.

I'd like the INSert mode for Slot 3 to be settable on a PER-I/O basis. Thus for an ADDA card I could put some of the IO channels in INSert mode (e.g. a pair as an LR master insert), but have others in the "override 9-16" mode for use in other signal routings. The current software only allows the card to be globally switched to INSert or not.

MIDI

It would be nice to be able to edit the Locate Points used by the MMC. Sometimes a Locate Point is just a few seconds off, and it's easier to edit it than to re-roll tape to capture a new value. Other times it'd be convenient to simply enter a time into a Locate Point without rolling tape.

Miscellaneous

Bit-splitting to multiple tape tracks. This would allow >16-bit storage on 16-bit tapes, sacrificing multiple tracks to get better resolution. It'd be great to have the option for, say, 4 tracks of 24-bit audio on a DA-88. Current split formats include Rane Paqrat, Prism Yamaha 02R, perhaps a few others. Choose one.

EQ and Dynamics library "reference" and "copy" modes in the channel page. Presently, the library settings are copied into the channel. A subsequent change to the library preset will not change the channel.

In "reference" mode, the library setting would not be copied, but the channel would use the "live" library settings. Thus a later change to the library would be reflected in all channels that use it. (If any individual setting is changed in the channel page, then a warning should be issued. The user can then decide whether he wants the library settings copied immediately, so his changed settings become "private" copies in the channel.

Headphone mute of monitor-A output (or A & B). A configuration setting would be nice. My control room and studio used to be in the same room.

Improvements to the manual

  • List exactly what params are remembered by the Channel Library. What about the other libraries?
  • A detailed discussion, with block diagrams if necessary, describing exactly how the MIDI and serial ports work.
  • Thoroughly document operation of Slot 3 INSert and NORmal modes.
  • Include examples of operations.

Copyright © 1995-2016 - Rick Auricchio