Two types of people. One, like myself, wants to turn on a product and use it. No drama. The other wants to save and pinch every penny possible, and is willing to constantly "tinker". A SAC style approach doesn't fit me, but that doesn't mean others won't benefit.The trick is having scalable/flexible without needing to "tinker".
iLive to me is very close in concept already, the theme just needs some slight expansion. A system that allows a fairly unlimited number of rack-modules to be connected together and interfaced via a high speed bus interface, and be controlled by any number of surfaces, virtual or other, similar to what A&H is already offering. Adding a large touch-screen virtual surface will be no risk at all, the ones that don't want it can still have the option of real faders.
What I'd really like to see is virtual outboard gear in the form of lightweight rack mountable touch screens with rotary encoders. One of the biggest shortcomings of the move to digital consoles which get more and more compact every year is that it's impossible to see everything that's going on at once with not just all your channels on the surface, but all of your processing like gates, comps, and FX. In that sense, it's been a huge step backward in my opinion. I do like working on my Venue, but you can't quickly manipulate multiple effect plugins on the fly without digging through screens. It's bullshit. Sure, if I was a touring ME with the same act every night, I could do up a scene for every tune and have all my effects, compressors, etc, all preprogrammed and dialed up. But that's impossible for the rest of us. I want the same ease of use where I had a rack with my verbs and delays where I can just reach for a knob and dial up an effect or quickly switch a parameter on a gate or compressor.IMO, it will be a big coup for the first manufacture who comes up with relatively inexpensive virtual outboard that can be configured to have whatever "rack gear" you want. You should be able to hook up as many of these units as you want with simple cable like ethernet which can be daisy chained. They should come in varying sizes of 1,2 or 3RU. Maybe even really large units that can have muitiple virtual processors on one screen so long as the rotary encoders can be laid out logically. They should be able to be assignable as any channel or group processing you wish to have full time access too. And of course, they should also be able to change what piece of processing they are via scene recall too. Maybe I'm crazy, but this seems like functionality that should have been implemented long ago and I find it shocking that it hasn't. The lack of this type of functionality is a major step backward.For my workflow right now, I'd like to have all my group processing show up full time in these racks along with my verbs and delays. I can live without my channel inserts in the virtual racks, but even some of those would be nice to have full time access to as well.
Interesting.. you want to break out more real-time control, while my crystal ball predicts a future with less hands-on tweaking. The technology to accomplish what you ask for is no big deal, but finding a large enough market to justify making one is another story.
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