There are a few items of equipment in the DAW that are pre-set, meaning you do not have to worry about setting them up or altering them in any way. However, as these items are very important to the DAW, we feel it is important to introduce you to them.
The Monitor Speakers
On both sides of the DAW you will notice what look like two speakers. These can be more accurately described as self-powered studio monitors. Unlike home stereo speakers, monitor speakers have a “flat response,” meaning that they reproduce sound as closely to the input as possible, where no audio filtering takes place. This ensures the audio sounds good before we export it, and even better on home stereo speakers. These speakers have been calibrated for the DAW, so please do not turn them off or change the control settings.
The Power Conditioners
The power conditioners control the quality of the power that is delivered to the equipment in the DAW. As we live in a city, there is a lot of electronic noise in the power lines feeding our equipment. Unconditioned power can add audible noise to the audio and can even damage the equipment over time, so these power conditioners are very important. Even if you want to conserve power, please do not turn these units off as the entire DAW is powered by these devices. If the power conditioners are turned off, the entire system is reset, which can cause a lot of problems. Please leave them on!
The Digi002 firewire interface
The Digi002 is an external firewire sound card. The Digi002 is specifically made for ProTools, but can also be used for the other programs in the DAW. The DAW is set up such that all inputs are first routed to the Mackie Mixer. This mix is then sent to channels 1 and 2 of the Digi002. Please do not change any settings on this piece of equipment. If someone has changed these controls, you can return it to its correct set-up:
- The selection buttons that line the top-left of the interface should not be pushed in.
- The first and second knobs located on the bottom-left should be turned down and the third and fourth turned up 2/3s of the way as shown in the picture.
- Do not worry about the other controls. If you would like to change the sampling rate, you can do this using software.
All playback coming from this device, and consequently the audio program you are working in (i.e. ProTools, Reason, Acid, etc.) is routed to channels 15-16 on the Mackie Mixer, labeled "Comp/Digi Playback," which share the right-most channel strip.
The MOTU MICRO LITE
The MOTU Micro Lite is a MIDI device that both sends and receives MIDI information and allows the various MIDI devices within the DAW to communicate with each other and the computer. You do not need to alter this device, it is set up and ready for use.
For advanced users, this device displays if any MIDI information is being sent to or from a device by the flashing numbers on the front. If you are assigning MIDI to or from a control device using a program such as Reason, you can find its corresponding MIDI channel by moving a control on the desired control device and look for its corresponding MIDI channel as indicated by which number is flashing on the Micro Lite.
We will now look at what input hardware is already available in the DAW.