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John Eppstein

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Posts: 1,150 Member Since:31/05/2015

#21 [url]

Oct 31 15 9:35 PM

crandallwarren wrote:
Hey Guys,

These are all great ideas. My preference for the OX-8 is based on the fact that everyone I've asked who's used them says that they're really good transformers. While the DB25/Phoenix connectors aren't ideally for a mobile setup, I do like that they'd be modular. That way, if I'm going out to do a smaller gig with only 8-16 channels-- I don't necessarily have to bring "the giant roadcase with the 58 channel split in it". The Radial Roadster stuff looks ideal for larger gigs though. I'm already a big fan of the stage bug series and it seems like the splitter would be the perfect centerpiece.

Let me ask one more piece of advice in terms of the Radial's. Suppose, instead of DB25 to DB25's, I had DB25 to XLR tails. The DB25 ends could stay plugged into the back of the Radials and the XLR's would simply be to jump into the house stage box and my preamps.

My hesitance with building/buying another form of breakout is that it drastically increases the cost and also the amount of point to point connections involved. At that point, I feel like it would be better to just have something custom built.

C.

Then you'll have ongoing problems with broken and shorted connections in the back of the Radials. No strain relief in the connector.

DB-25 should only be used in static situations where the cabled hardly ever moves.

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DavidSpearritt

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Posts: 3 Member Since:24/05/2011

#22 [url]

Nov 3 15 3:57 AM

John Eppstein wrote:

On last thing I'd like to mention - you are NOT going to find real professional quality sound reinforcement or location recording gear at any of the well known, mass market gear outlets. You'll have to go to a real pro audio dealer who specializes in catering to commercial studios and remote trucks and sound reinforcement companies. Most of these dealers don't advertise a whole lot because people who are in their market generally know who they are. And, with a few exceptions, most of the gear you see advertised in the gear publications as "moist pro" isn't. Even if a mass market dealer sells stuff from a company with a reputation for heavy-duty studio or SR gear - for example SSL -  (with the exception of outboard), they almost certainly don't carry the real top of the line pro stuff and in many (or most) cases can't get it because they're on a lower tier of the company's dealer network.


It seems the Merging Horus/Hapi and DAD AX32 would certainly qualify for professional location gear, and both have DB25.

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John Eppstein

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Posts: 1,150 Member Since:31/05/2015

#23 [url]

Nov 3 15 5:57 AM

djs wrote:

John Eppstein wrote:

On last thing I'd like to mention - you are NOT going to find real professional quality sound reinforcement or location recording gear at any of the well known, mass market gear outlets. You'll have to go to a real pro audio dealer who specializes in catering to commercial studios and remote trucks and sound reinforcement companies. Most of these dealers don't advertise a whole lot because people who are in their market generally know who they are. And, with a few exceptions, most of the gear you see advertised in the gear publications as "moist pro" isn't. Even if a mass market dealer sells stuff from a company with a reputation for heavy-duty studio or SR gear - for example SSL -  (with the exception of outboard), they almost certainly don't carry the real top of the line pro stuff and in many (or most) cases can't get it because they're on a lower tier of the company's dealer network.


It seems the Merging Horus/Hapi and DAD AX32 would certainly qualify for professional location gear, and both have DB25.

professional touring or location gear? certainly not.

There seems to be some confusion about what "professional" quality gear is, due to the dilution of the definition in recent years.

DB25 is certainly not "tour quality" or "professional location quality", never has been and never will, unless you're willing to accept constant random failures in your mission critical applications.

Would you drive a Ford Pinto in a Formula One race? I certainly would not.

If you don't want to take my word for it, listen to Tim Halligan, or anybody else who does remotes for a living.

Or if you don't, order from the usual gear catalogs and live with the consequences.

If you want good info, listen to the guys who have worked for the touring/location companies, not the gear pimps.
 

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jmoran

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Posts: 748 Member Since:23/08/2011

#24 [url]

Nov 19 15 7:45 PM

Over the years, I've been around the block once or twice with location work running a remote truck and apparently well enough to get a TEC award nomination or two.  It had a 54 input splitter, 3 way out, Jensen transformers and ground lifts on the split legs.  Multipin connectors were the big AMP locking blocks with the lever action, 100', 200' and 250' snakes.

Here are some pictures of my current splitter, a 32 input 2 way split that can be expanded in number of inputs and another leg added for a 3rd output if desired.
Omigosh, it's the dreaded Radial splitter with DB25s, this can't be professional !!!!

Actually it is.  4 units mounted in a 10U SKB crate with 10' and 25' tails on the outputs.  It's really quite simple; all you have to do is provide for stress relief so there is no strain put on the connectors and leave them in place permanently.  The zip tie mounts are doubled up with permanent adhesive and if that's not enough for you, they are center tapped and can be bolted into place such that ripping them out of the wall of the case would be required to do damage.  This tweak is under $10 in parts and takes 30 minutes of your time.

Anyway, just wanted to show that there are professional ways of doing things even if it's not the old skool techniques we are all familiar with.

image
imageimageimage
 

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fenris

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Posts: 1,450 Member Since:26/01/2011

#25 [url]

Nov 20 15 6:55 AM

I noticed the air space between the units. I do the same thing to keep gear cool, but it obviously doesn't apply to splitters. :D Unfortunately it means you can only put in the bottom 2 screws. Which brings up another question, why do racks have staggered spacing on the screw holes?!? Are there any that don't?

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jmoran

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Posts: 748 Member Since:23/08/2011

#26 [url]

Nov 21 15 2:32 PM

It's just the Rack rail spacing standard for 1U, 2U, 3U, etc.  I think it's an IEEE spec.
An easy way around it is to build the rack rails from wood and then you can space it however you desire.  Wood also gives you ground isolation from unit to unit unlike metal rails.  We built amp racks doing this and it works very well, especially for big heavy amps.  We  put in front and rear rails.  This was for some QSC 3500 and Crown DC300 amps back in the '80s and it also held a couple of racks of Adams-Smith 2600 synchronizers, audio/video DA's and black burst/sync generator. There are tapped metal fittings that get hammered into the holes in the wood rails for threading the bolts in. Make certain your bolts are properly sized and the wood rails heavily secured to the frame of the rack.  Heavy Duty casters are recommended.  Any decent carpenter can build this with basic tools.  Wood looks good too.

The spacing on the splitter rack was a concious decision to make a little more working space on the front and back. This rack doesn't see incredibly hard duty in transit so the pairs of bolts are enough to hold things. It's not getting loaded into semi's by Teamsters/IATSE roadies.  If/when it gets expanded, things will be rearranged to a tighter spacing and  fully secured with 4 bolts per unit.  I don't consider the SKB cases hard duty by any stretch, certainly not in the Anvil ATA class like some other cases around here, but for my purposes it's fine and they aren't heavy like the Anvils are.  My UPS is in an Anvil 2U and you know it when you pick it up.  The SKB stacking form does make it easy to mount different units on top of each other, ie, remote controlled preamp/distro rack on top of the splitter.

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John Eppstein

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Posts: 1,150 Member Since:31/05/2015

#27 [url]

Nov 21 15 5:32 PM

jmoran wrote:
Over the years, I've been around the block once or twice with location work running a remote truck and apparently well enough to get a TEC award nomination or two.  It had a 54 input splitter, 3 way out, Jensen transformers and ground lifts on the split legs.  Multipin connectors were the big AMP locking blocks with the lever action, 100', 200' and 250' snakes.

Here are some pictures of my current splitter, a 32 input 2 way split that can be expanded in number of inputs and another leg added for a 3rd output if desired.
Omigosh, it's the dreaded Radial splitter with DB25s, this can't be professional !!!!

Actually it is.  4 units mounted in a 10U SKB crate with 10' and 25' tails on the outputs.  It's really quite simple; all you have to do is provide for stress relief so there is no strain put on the connectors and leave them in place permanently.  The zip tie mounts are doubled up with permanent adhesive and if that's not enough for you, they are center tapped and can be bolted into place such that ripping them out of the wall of the case would be required to do damage.  This tweak is under $10 in parts and takes 30 minutes of your time.

Anyway, just wanted to show that there are professional ways of doing things even if it's not the old skool techniques we are all familiar with.

image
imageimageimage


 

Well, to me that's just an example of the fact that professional people sometimes adapt less than professional quality gear to their purposes. It certainly can be done. When I was a tech for FM Productions (Bill Graham) back in the day we had racks of Phase Linear 700s that had been heavily modified, partly to prevent the weight of the transformer in the back front tearing the flimsy aluminum rack ears off the chassis when they were roaded.

I believe I did mention that you CAN use gear with DB25s as long as the cables are strain reliefed and are short runs to panel mounted professional quality multipins - this isn't that far from that. I personally dislike splitters with hard wrired pigtails most of the time* (Probably an old person's prejudice), bnut if your strain relief is adequate there shouldn't be a problem unless the SKB case happes to crack at the screw holes, which would not be totally unheard of.. If the strain reliefs are only secured by sticky foam I don't know if I'd trust that - I've seen them pull loose.

I dunno - as a service tech I was trained to look for potential failure points and to not assume that conditions would always be optimum.
jmoran wrote:
It's just the Rack rail spacing standard for 1U, 2U, 3U, etc.  I think it's an IEEE spec.
An easy way around it is to build the rack rails from wood and then you can space it however you desire.  Wood also gives you ground isolation from unit to unit unlike metal rails.  We built amp racks doing this and it works very well, especially for big heavy amps.  We  put in front and rear rails.  This was for some QSC 3500 and Crown DC300 amps back in the '80s and it also held a couple of racks of Adams-Smith 2600 synchronizers, audio/video DA's and black burst/sync generator. There are tapped metal fittings that get hammered into the holes in the wood rails for threading the bolts in. Make certain your bolts are properly sized and the wood rails heavily secured to the frame of the rack.  Heavy Duty casters are recommended.  Any decent carpenter can build this with basic tools.  Wood looks good too.


 

I agree totally on the wood rails - at FM all our cases were made in the carpentry/set design shop and were built like tanks - and wood rails go a long way toward eliminating ground loops. We had lots of DC300s, modified Phase Linears, and,(IIRC) BGW 750s. We also used wood rails for our outboard racks for the isolation.
The spacing on the splitter rack was a concious decision to make a little more working space on the front and back. This rack doesn't see incredibly hard duty in transit so the pairs of bolts are enough to hold things. It's not getting loaded into semi's by Teamsters/IATSE roadies.  If/when it gets expanded, things will be rearranged to a tighter spacing and  fully secured with 4 bolts per unit.  I don't consider the SKB cases hard duty by any stretch, certainly not in the Anvil ATA class like some other cases around here, but for my purposes it's fine and they aren't heavy like the Anvils are.  My UPS is in an Anvil 2U and you know it when you pick it up.  The SKB stacking form does make it easy to mount different units on top of each other, ie, remote controlled preamp/distro rack on top of the splitter.

To me, the tight spacing is just another indication that the splitters are not designed toi be professional (road) quality. They're designed to be installed and not moved. And no, I don't regard the SKB cases as being road quality, either. Or course they are one heck of a lot lighter and cheaper, and they do stack nicely.

As far as the "not retting loaded into semis by Teamsters and IATSE stage crews", haven't you ever worked in a city (like Cleveland, IIRC) where they WILL NOT let you move your own cases under penalty of hefty fines? They just don't give you the option in some places. (At least not unless the unions have changed drastically in recent years...)
 

Last Edited By: John Eppstein Nov 21 15 5:51 PM. Edited 1 time.

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crandallwarren

Tin Man

Posts: 16 Member Since:17/11/2014

#28 [url]

Dec 7 15 5:02 PM

jmoran wrote:
Over the years, I've been around the block once or twice with location work running a remote truck and apparently well enough to get a TEC award nomination or two.  It had a 54 input splitter, 3 way out, Jensen transformers and ground lifts on the split legs.  Multipin connectors were the big AMP locking blocks with the lever action, 100', 200' and 250' snakes.

Here are some pictures of my current splitter, a 32 input 2 way split that can be expanded in number of inputs and another leg added for a 3rd output if desired.
Omigosh, it's the dreaded Radial splitter with DB25s, this can't be professional !!!!

Actually it is.  4 units mounted in a 10U SKB crate with 10' and 25' tails on the outputs.  It's really quite simple; all you have to do is provide for stress relief so there is no strain put on the connectors and leave them in place permanently.  The zip tie mounts are doubled up with permanent adhesive and if that's not enough for you, they are center tapped and can be bolted into place such that ripping them out of the wall of the case would be required to do damage.  This tweak is under $10 in parts and takes 30 minutes of your time.

Anyway, just wanted to show that there are professional ways of doing things even if it's not the old skool techniques we are all familiar with.

image
imageimageimage

 

Wow. Thanks very much for the pictures and the explanation. This is very very helpful. I have a big 12U wooden rack that is too unweildy for me if loaded with gear, but would be perfect for doing what you've done here. 

This conversation has been really intersting to follow and I really thank everyone for chiming in. I think that there's a gradiation within the term "road worthy". For instance, there's a difference between touring gear that's loading into a new venue day-in/day-out and a flypack rig being set-up/ operated and packed by the same guy every day. I'm a live guy by day and I've worked with a bunch of different kinds of splitters and quite frankly Whirlwind W4 is not immune from pins breaking or the seals getting messed up, etc. 

As an update to my original post-- I did end up getting 4 Radial 8OX's for a very good price. And I can't speak highly enough about them. I recently used them in a venue where I had been once before. The previous time I had rented a big ramlatch split from a vendor. I had had all kinds of noise problems. This time, with the radials, plugged in at the same position, with the same rig, powered off the same power supply-- I had absolutely zero. With the radials, and transformers like them, there's more going on that just transformers. Anyways-- to me, its worth finding a solution that uses them. At the very lest, I have a splitter that I can load up a flight of stairs by myself and can sit on the top of the FOH console if there's no other option. 

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