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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    Default AUX: A Scenario and a Question

    Hello,

    My question is with regards to output level and the use of AUX/RTN.

    SAW Configuration
    1. I-01
    AUX: 1
    * In: Disabled
    * Level: 00.00
    * Fader level: 00.00
    Note: Add a wave file to I-01 in the MultiTrack.
    2. R-01
    Out Asgn: 1
    Fader level: 00.00
    3. O-01
    Fader level: Adjust to preference

    Part A: The Scenario
    1. Ensure I-01, AUX 1 is viewable.
    2. Enable playback.
    Observation: Output is heard.
    3. AUX 1-In: Enable
    Observation: The actual output is increased. Toggling the AUX1-In button decreases and/or increases the output accordingly. Whether I am use PRE or PST does not make any change to the actual output.

    Part B: The Question
    Pardon my "neophyte-ness" and/or my ineptitude at being able to properly understand this scenario, but my question is,

    "Why is the output level increased when the AUX1-In button is enabled?"

    I was "under the impression" that AUX 1 was simply routing the signal to the Return section to alter that signal using whatever plug-in was inserted into the Return section, but I really did not think that the Return section had any effect on the actual output level!

    Also, I thought that if was nothing inserted into a Return channel, that the actual output level would have no effect whatsoever on the signal. However, it would appear that it does!

    Am I missing something here?

    Any help or assistance would be greatly appreciated.
    Last edited by mr_es335; 06-14-2018 at 06:52 AM. Reason: Errors and updates

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Portland, Maine U.S.A.
    Posts
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    Default Re: AUX: A Scenario and a Question

    The Aux return gets added to the main signal, so yes anything sent and routed back to the main mix will be louder. Just like if you sent a signal to the aux to create a reverb return. When the reverberated signal is added back to the main mix, the mix signal will be louder. Another way to make a signal louder is to send it to multiple master outputs.

    I am not sure why you would expect an additional audio path to the mix bus to not affect the master level.
    Michael McInnis Productions

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Maple Ridge, BC Canada
    Posts
    2,105

    Default Re: AUX: A Scenario and a Question

    MMP,
    I am not sure why you would expect an additional audio path to the mix bus to not affect the master level.
    ...Thanks for the response. However, in any of the documentation that I read, bearing in mind that this misunderstanding may be a direct result of my ineptitude here, but I never thought that a Return was an actual audio path and have never had anyone state it as such.

    At least until now.

    If what you say IS true, then why does a Return have to add gain to the original audio signal at all?

  4. #4

    Default Re: AUX: A Scenario and a Question

    Quote Originally Posted by mr_es335 View Post
    MMP,
    ...Thanks for the response. However, in any of the documentation that I read, bearing in mind that this misunderstanding may be a direct result of my ineptitude here, but I never thought that a Return was an actual audio path and have never had anyone state it as such.

    At least until now.

    If what you say IS true, then why does a Return have to add gain to the original audio signal at all?
    Returns have always been "actual audio paths." Even in analog consoles, a return is just another type of input. Signal comes in (or is "returned" -- the context is often that the signal has been sent, processed somehow, and now is being returned) and is mixed along with the other inputs to a mix bus. All non-zero signals have a positive value that will increase the overall mix volume by some amount, notwithstanding possible phase cancellations.

    The best way to make a return not add gain to the original audio signal is not to mix it in with that signal.

    But what is your purpose of using the return? A typical use would be to add an effect, like reverb, to a signal -- especially in cases where you want several tracks to send to that reverb module. You would set the effect module to "full wet," so that none of the original ("dry") signal comes through the return and increases the dry signal gain at the mix bus (like what you're seeing). The return, therefore, would only contain reverberated (wet) content.

    Yes -- mixing any of the original signal back into itself will increase the total gain for that signal, just as in any other signal summing scenario.

    What are you trying to do via the return? Maybe it's not the way to achieve what you're after.
    Last edited by Dave Labrecque; 05-25-2018 at 02:11 PM.
    Dave "it aint the heat, it's the humidity" Labrecque
    Becket, Massachusetts

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Maple Ridge, BC Canada
    Posts
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    Default Re: AUX: A Scenario and a Question

    Dave,

    Thank you for the reply.

    I have been using a Return for effects - namely, reverb. However, I did notice that when I sent the signal to the Return, that I was also hearing an increase in the output.

    In this scenario, I have the AUX1 level at 00.00, the Return fader level at 00.00 and the plug-in full wet. Enabling AUX1, I now hear an increase in the output. This, at least to me, does not really make any sense!

    I simply want to send the main signal to the Return - adjusting the amount of signal sent to the Return via the AUX1 level fader.

    Maybe I should be asking the question, "Then what is the intended purpose of the Return level fader?"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Portland, Maine U.S.A.
    Posts
    2,189

    Default Re: AUX: A Scenario and a Question

    With that extra path I would expect a 6db gain at unity. The return fader would allow you to change the amount of the signal to be mixed at an appropriate level, the same way any fader works on a mixer.
    Last edited by MMP; 05-25-2018 at 04:24 PM.
    Michael McInnis Productions

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Maple Ridge, BC Canada
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    2,105

    Default Re: AUX: A Scenario and a Question

    Michael,
    With that extra path I would expect a 6db gain at unity.
    ...Thanks for this...is there a way to confirm this "expected gain"?

    The return fader would allow you to change the amount of the signal to be mixed at an appropriate level, the same way any fader works on a mixer.
    ...I "kinda' fig'urd so"!

    Note: As a point of interest, when I lower the Return level to -11.00db, I am no longer hearing any noticeable difference between the two channels.

    Is this way in which you are to work with the Return channels then?
    Last edited by mr_es335; 05-25-2018 at 04:53 PM. Reason: Update

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Portland, Maine U.S.A.
    Posts
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    Default Re: AUX: A Scenario and a Question

    Take one channel. Send it post fader to the aux at unity gain. Bring the return level to unity. Put a high resolution meter on the output buss. Mute and unmute the return. Record the difference in level on the meter.

    I would expect a 6db difference because you are making two channels worth of signal by duplicating it into the aux bus. 6db would reflect that doubling. If it is an issue, lower the return fader by 6db.

    The same thing would happen if you duplicated the track to a second one.

    If you are sending pre-fader then the results would be different depending upon the original recorded level of the track.
    Last edited by MMP; 05-25-2018 at 05:25 PM.
    Michael McInnis Productions

  9. #9

    Default Re: AUX: A Scenario and a Question

    Maybe I'm missing something, here, guys, but it seems to me that if the reverb is set to full wet, there should be no signal doubling, just the increase in level that the reverb adds. That appears to be the dilemma: 100% wet reverb, yet an apparent increase in the source volume. Do I have that right?

    My best guess in that case would be that something is set wrong in the reverb plug-in. You could test that by substituting another plug-in that has a full wet mode. But first, why not adjust the wet/dry fader/knob and see how or if it changes things. That might tell you something.

    It's either that or there's some other routing/patching thing going on that you're missing. (Again, unless I'm missing something.)
    Dave "it aint the heat, it's the humidity" Labrecque
    Becket, Massachusetts

  10. #10

    Default Re: AUX: A Scenario and a Question

    The SS Reverb, for example, has separate controls for Dry and Wet. So you could easily set the sliders to full wet and 50 percent dry.
    Ian Alexander
    VO Talent/Audio Producer
    www.IanAlexander.com

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