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Author Topic: Soundcraft GB8 48  (Read 72301 times)

Bennett Prescott

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Re: Soundcraft GB8 48
« Reply #70 on: May 27, 2007, 10:02:16 am »

Josh,

Last I checked (it's been a few weeks) the jackfield on the back of the APB mixers released so far is metal.
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John Roberts {JR}

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Re: Soundcraft GB8 48
« Reply #71 on: May 27, 2007, 10:30:04 am »

Michael 'Bink' Knowles wrote on Thu, 24 May 2007 07:22



I'd like to know the answer, too. I can't even begin to guess how designers answer the pin 1 problem with unbalanced jacks such as the GB8's Tip Return inserts. The problem is that the shield is part of the circuit.  Confused

Balanced inserts would have made me more interested in this mixer.

-Bink


There is no pin 1 so no pin 1 problem  QED.

Seriously, it's a pretty similar situation. The connector ground is bonded to chassis ground at the insert jack field and all signals coming or going properly differentials from the single ground point. The odds of equipment being plugged into insert fields being from distant, unrelated power mains is rare, so there should be less rougue ground currents to deal with.  

Unbalanced insert jack fields are not optimal for long feeds in noisy environments but they work adequately well for short runs. One could buy a little better signal integrity by using more conductors in the wiring and shielding both audio conductors.

I am not aware of a performance difference between metal and plastic bushings and/or plastic nuts (besides mechanical robustness) but there is surely a customer perception and the customer is always.....Cool

JR  
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Ryan Lantzy

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Re: Soundcraft GB8 48
« Reply #72 on: May 27, 2007, 01:47:06 pm »

John Roberts  {JR} wrote on Sun, 27 May 2007 10:30


Unbalanced insert jack fields are not optimal for long feeds in noisy environments but they work adequately well for short runs.


In support of this, I have yet to EVER run into a piece of outboard that didn't sound perfectly adequate using unbalanced insert TRS - 2x TS cables.  I haven't been doing this quite as log as some others, and I'm sure others' experience differs.

For as tedious (and/or costly) as making insert cables and snakes is, I'd be happy with all unbalanced gear at that point.  Additionally, I'd wish the outboard manufacturers would start selling gear with single point insert jacks just like the console makers.  That way, one TRS-TRS cable would connect the send and the return rather than the confounded TRS-2xTS cables that are USELESS for every other SR application.


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Michael 'Bink' Knowles

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Re: Soundcraft GB8 48
« Reply #73 on: May 27, 2007, 02:43:02 pm »

Ryan Lantzy wrote on Sun, 27 May 2007 10:47

...In support of this, I have yet to EVER run into a piece of outboard that didn't sound perfectly adequate using unbalanced insert TRS - 2x TS cables.  I haven't been doing this quite as log as some others, and I'm sure others' experience differs.


Just this past week I got less hum/buzz from an outboard dbx 166XL when using a Ramsa WRS4424's balanced group outs and returning balanced into a spare channel versus using the mixer's unbalanced group inserts with a TRS==>2xTS cable. I've had this exact same experience with other mixers as well, and with a host of outboard gear. It wouldn't be as critical if it were a loud band with a dense sound but if the subgroup is for speech and is being recorded, the slight hum/buzz in the background is that much more exposed.


http://www.cmtc.co.uk/acatalog/hpu009u_mini_to_trs_adpt.jpg

Quote:

...the confounded TRS-2xTS cables that are USELESS for every other SR application.


Heh heh. You can use them for headphone outputs to mixer inputs. You can use them to take a compact mixer's 1/4" outputs into a single JBL EON G2's TRS stereo input (which makes a mono sum of both channels.) You can use them with a minijack adaptor slapped onto the TRS end for iPods and for Smaart laptops with minijack i/o.  Razz

-Bink
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John Roberts {JR}

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Re: Soundcraft GB8 48
« Reply #74 on: May 27, 2007, 03:50:17 pm »

Ryan Lantzy wrote on Sun, 27 May 2007 12:47

John Roberts  {JR} wrote on Sun, 27 May 2007 10:30


Unbalanced insert jack fields are not optimal for long feeds in noisy environments but they work adequately well for short runs.


In support of this, I have yet to EVER run into a piece of outboard that didn't sound perfectly adequate using unbalanced insert TRS - 2x TS cables.  I haven't been doing this quite as log as some others, and I'm sure others' experience differs.

For as tedious (and/or costly) as making insert cables and snakes is, I'd be happy with all unbalanced gear at that point.  Additionally, I'd wish the outboard manufacturers would start selling gear with single point insert jacks just like the console makers.  That way, one TRS-TRS cable would connect the send and the return rather than the confounded TRS-2xTS cables that are USELESS for every other SR application.





I have done this before but it never became widely embraced by the marketplace, and there are/were a few oddball mixer mfrs whose inserts were bass-akwards.

Balanced is better but money talks, especially in consoles where the incremental cost is 16 to 40x.

JR
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John Roberts {JR}

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Re: Soundcraft GB8 48
« Reply #75 on: May 27, 2007, 03:54:55 pm »

Michael 'Bink' Knowles wrote on Sun, 27 May 2007 13:43



Just this past week I got less hum/buzz from an outboard dbx 166XL when using a Ramsa WRS4424's balanced group outs and returning balanced into a spare channel versus using the mixer's unbalanced group inserts with a TRS==>2xTS cable. I've had this exact same experience with other mixers as well, and with a host of outboard gear. It wouldn't be as critical if it were a loud band with a dense sound but if the subgroup is for speech and is being recorded, the slight hum/buzz in the background is that much more exposed.


-Bink


Balanced is undeniably better and may be covering up ills in outboard gear that may be  exaggerated by power and/or how gear is racked up. YMMV

The customer is always right, whichever choice he makes,,,

JR
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Andy Peters

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Re: Soundcraft GB8 48
« Reply #76 on: May 27, 2007, 04:02:22 pm »

Ryan Lantzy wrote on Sun, 27 May 2007 10:47

Additionally, I'd wish the outboard manufacturers would start selling gear with single point insert jacks just like the console makers.  That way, one TRS-TRS cable would connect the send and the return rather than the confounded TRS-2xTS cables that are USELESS for every other SR application.


One potential problem with this is that the user would choose a standard twisted-pair cable with TRS ends, and the part of my brain that worries about such things as crosstalk and potential badness starts throbbing when I think about it.

And the standard insert cable has one other use: headphone outs to two line ins.

While the insert cable has few other uses, it's so widely used for its intended application that it's not really useless.

-a
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Tom Der

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Re: Soundcraft GB8 48
« Reply #77 on: May 29, 2007, 10:50:46 am »

[
Quote:

...Id seriously be curious about the grounding scheme for the inserts as others have not met up to par in the past. Does PIN1 have the typical zero length termination to chasi or something else?  


I'd like to know the answer, too. I can't even begin to guess how designers answer the pin 1 problem with unbalanced jacks such as the GB8's Tip Return inserts. The problem is that the shield is part of the circuit.  Confused

Balanced inserts would have made me more interested in this mixer.

-Bink[/quote]

JR already commented correctly on this but i had already sent the comment over to Graham Blyth, one of Soundcraft's founders and still chief designer and not to mention the GB in the GB Series of consoles. He responds:

The Pin1 issue is not really a problem, even for unbalanced send/return loops because Pin1 is taken straight to chassis and there are emc caps from the other pins to the Pin1. According to Jim Brown, who is the real guru on these things nowadays, we’re all completely screwed when we get up into the Giga Hertz area, because even the shortest and thickest piece of track is enough of an inductor to cause problems. However, actual field experience does not seem to exhibit audibly the problems that Jim quite rightly warns about, and generally all the major console designers are using best practice with regard to pin1 issues. Admittedly I’m over here rather than over there, but I’ve not heard any “Foxy Lady, come on in …” over the Church PA stories for sometime now.

All The Best,


Tom Der
National Sales Manager
Soundcraft USA


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Michael 'Bink' Knowles

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Re: Soundcraft GB8 48
« Reply #78 on: May 29, 2007, 11:38:54 am »

Tom Der wrote on Tue, 29 May 2007 07:50

Bink wrote


Josh Evans wrote

...Id seriously be curious about the grounding scheme for the inserts as others have not met up to par in the past. Does PIN1 have the typical zero length termination to chasi or something else?  


I'd like to know the answer, too. I can't even begin to guess how designers answer the pin 1 problem with unbalanced jacks such as the GB8's Tip Return inserts. The problem is that the shield is part of the circuit.  Confused

Balanced inserts would have made me more interested in this mixer.

-Bink


JR already commented correctly on this but i had already sent the comment over to Graham Blyth, one of Soundcraft's founders and still chief designer and not to mention the GB in the GB Series of consoles. He responds:

The Pin1 issue is not really a problem, even for unbalanced send/return loops because Pin1 is taken straight to chassis and there are emc caps from the other pins to the Pin1. According to Jim Brown, who is the real guru on these things nowadays, we’re all completely screwed when we get up into the Giga Hertz area, because even the shortest and thickest piece of track is enough of an inductor to cause problems. However, actual field experience does not seem to exhibit audibly the problems that Jim quite rightly warns about, and generally all the major console designers are using best practice with regard to pin1 issues. Admittedly I’m over here rather than over there, but I’ve not heard any “Foxy Lady, come on in …” over the Church PA stories for sometime now.

All The Best,


Tom Der
National Sales Manager
Soundcraft USA


Fair enough, Tom. I'm glad you've got the right guys making sure the unbalanced inserts are as good as they can be.

Josh had a question: how many poles is the HPF on the GB8?

-Bink
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Dan Mortensen

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Re: Soundcraft GB8 48
« Reply #79 on: June 06, 2007, 09:34:58 pm »

Hi Bennett (et al),

Just stumbled on this thread (and on the whole Road Test Forum; odd that I've never visited before), and had to comment on a few things:

1) Concerning the lack of pads on this console and the GB series: Andy and Bink's comments about using FXL-MTRS adaptors have not received enough love. Why pad the signal down to reamplify it when you can go in a line input? Yes, I agree about the hassle, and about the lack of phantom, but this is not an expensive console. You pay a price for having a cheap(er) console.

2) Concerning the sound of the GB series: I have two GB4's, a 16 and a 32. Through a variety of Meyer PA's, they are wonderful sounding, clear and coherent. I like the EQ just fine.

3) Regarding the flip feature for the auxes and subs: I thought the point of it was to get the inserts on the auxes; on the GB4, since it has 4 subgroups, you'd have 4 auxes with XLR and the other auxes would be TRS. Maybe the the designers unthinkingly followed the GB4's non-flipping of the outputs which made sense on it,  but is a goof up on the GB8?

4) The biggest negative for me on the GB4/8 is the global pre/post on the auxes. There are LOTS of times when a mons-from-FOH gig needs pre sends on most channels, but post on playback channels so the tracks fade in the mons just like in the house. NOT POSSIBLE! GB2 is another story AFAIK, but there is a price to be paid for that, too.

5) Another niggling problem is that the backplate jackfield is sloped, which is fine for visual access but puts the insert jacks at the top of the console higher than the bottom of the doghouse lid (at least on my custom Spectrum cases). Some creative case foam substitutions were required to solve this one.

6) Regarding how big and heavy the road case is: of course it's going to be big and heavy when you ADD THREE USELESS INCHES TO THE TOP OF THE CASE WITH THAT POS METER BRIDGE, AND FIVE PLUS INCHES TO THE LENGTH OF THE CASE WITH THOSE POS PLASTIC USELESS END CAPS!!!!!!!

Size equals weight!!!!!!!!!

FYI: the end caps are not structural, and are easily removed by taking the back of the console off, and removing the 10 or so screws holding each one in place. Those screw holes are easily filled by #1/4-20 (shoot, are they truss head screws? Domed low top, slot head) or equivalent screws with backing nuts. It even looks kind of cool in a leather-jacket-with-all-the-silver-studs kind of way.

FYI #II: The console works fine without the meter bridge, and there is dandy LED full metering. There is apparently some level of unfinishedness without the meter bridge, but you can fix that.

This USELESS APPENDAGE EXPLOSION would be my major beef with the consoles if it weren't so easily overcome.

7) Concerning the structural integrity of the unit: I, too, was concerned about the thickness of the sheet metal, and especially when I took the back off to remove those USELESS PLASTIC END CAPS. But when it is all buttoned up, that thing is structurally quite rigid. You can grab one corner and lift, and it moves as a unit and not a collection of pieces. They did a really nice job on this part.

8 (somehow I get a smiley when putting the paren after the eight) Comparing the GB series to the Series 2: IMO the GB's are much more of a low end pro series than the Series 2, which IMO was a joke to start with. I sold a S2 to a local school, and it is working fine for them after 5 or 6 or however many years it's been, but it seems more like an MI product at best in feel and build quality, and sound quality, based on a very limited listening (also through Meyers). The S2 is a lot of plastic compared to the rigid metal of the GB's.

9) I am reasonably ham-fisted as well, and have not had a problem with the assign buttons on the GB's.

10) Don't know anything about lights that come with it. Actual Littlelites come with the bigger console Tour Packages, and they are fine, whether right angle or straight when used with the GB's.

11) I would have gotten the GB8-32 over the GB4-32, and would certainly prefer 8 subs over 4 and 4 stereo returns over 2, except that the GB4-32 minus the USELESS PLASTIC END CAPS (in a  case built accordingly) JUST stands on end in my Econoline, meaning that a GB8 wouldn't. Case closed.

12) Tom Der is A number 1 in my book. He is a big reason that I am still a firm Soundcraft supporter, although the feeling began in 1979 with a 1S, and continued through the 200B before hitting some bumpy patches (before Tom's time, I think).

The product quality from what I perceive to be the Andy Brown era is the other reason. They are doing really cool things and have been since the Series 5, IMO.

In short, they are nifty consoles for the money, and it's nice that Soundcraft's future looks finally rosy in this digital age with these analogs for their niche and their upcoming family of digitals for their niche.

Sorry for all the caps, but hope this is helpful to someone.

Best wishes,
Dan
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