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Old January 26th, 2007, 07:38 PM   #1
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Analog mixing board + Final Cut Pro?

I want to mix multiple channels from my Final Cut Pro timeline with an analog mixer while recording to DAT. Is this possible or will the audio be smooshed into one channel? I was thinking of using this (http://www.zzounds.com/item--BEHUCA202) to connect my computer to the mixing board.
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Old January 26th, 2007, 08:04 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allen Riley
I want to mix multiple channels from my Final Cut Pro timeline with an analog mixer while recording to DAT. Is this possible or will the audio be smooshed into one channel? I was thinking of using this (http://www.zzounds.com/item--BEHUCA202) to connect my computer to the mixing board.

Allen,

The device you link to is a simple stereo output - two channels only. So while you can certainly mix multiple channels inside Final Cut Pro and send the resulting stereo mix TO it - there will only be 2 channels from that point on.

I suspect you're imagining using a hardware mixer to mix each individual level coming from your FCP timeline - that would require a hardware audio interface that supports multitrack output, something this simple unit does not do.
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Old January 26th, 2007, 08:37 PM   #3
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How about routing through Soundtrack Pro?
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Old January 27th, 2007, 05:39 AM   #4
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Cole,

It's still a hardware issue no matter what software you're working in.

Any interface that provides audio on a pair of RCA outputs will ONLY be a stereo connection.

You need to attach your computer to your mixer via Firewire, USB2.0 or some other higher speed interface that has the buss rate necessary to multiplex multiple audio streams out of the computer and into the mixer.

There are plenty of "relatively" inexpensive units that do this - but nothing for $29 that I've ever seen. Do a search under "multitrack AND Firewire" or multitrack and USB" on B&H, Markertek, or one of the other audio gear dealers. You'll probably find a bunch of boxes that will fit the bill.
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Old January 27th, 2007, 05:58 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allen Riley
I want to mix multiple channels from my Final Cut Pro timeline with an analog mixer while recording to DAT. Is this possible or will the audio be smooshed into one channel? I was thinking of using this (http://www.zzounds.com/item--BEHUCA202) to connect my computer to the mixing board.
Seconding Bill and Cole here. You need a multitrack audio interface with at least as many channels as you have tracks you plan to mix. There are a number of choices on the market - I personally have an Echo AudioFire 8 firewire interface that has 8 channels of analog I/O and that would allow me to mix 8 tracks mono from the computer to an external recorder or back into another set of tracks in the computer since its full-duplex. Echo also has a 12-channel version and multiple units can be daisy chained to give you 16 tracks, 20 tracks, 24 tracks etc. I only mention Echo as an example I'm familiar with, there are a number of other multitrack interfaces on the market as well.

Why are you going to DAT instead of back in to new tracks in FCP? It's pretty much dead as a format these days. While you can mix digitally in FCP or other software, there is a certain logic to doing it on an analog board, especially if you feel you do better, more expressive, work moving faders by hand or want to use external signal processors, but that doesn't mean you need to send the result to an external recorder. I don't use FCP but I presume it allows for simultaneous playback and recording like other editing software does and you should be able to bounce tracks through an external mixer with no problems. I have the Echo 8 mentioned above and a Mackie 1642 mixer. When I want to do it, it works just fine to assign tracks in the editing software (I use a PC so it's either Vegas or Audition in my case) to outputs 1 thru 8 on the interface and patch them to the line inputs on 8 mono channels on the mixer, then return the mixer's main mix output (and/or the submix outs for that matter) to a set of inputs on the interface. Create new tracks in the project in the software, assign the selected interface inputs as their signal source, and arm them for recording. When you hit the 'play' button your existing tracks in FCP play out to the mixer, get mixed down there, and the resulting mix comes back to FCP to be recorded into the project in new tracks running parallel to the old.
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Old January 28th, 2007, 02:40 PM   #6
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You could also just do an OMF export and find a friend who has protools, logic, or some other low end DAW. If you're only using 4 tracks You migh be able to find some shareware or freeware that you can import the OMF's to and mix in that software. Then print the mix back into FCP or export as AIFF interleved Stereo files and import them into FCP for the layback to DVD or tape. Yet another option is to export each track as an independent AIFF FIle and then import into a small DAW system as discussed above. Either way, you can end up with a stereo interleved AIFF file of the mix and re-import this back into FCP and sync it up. If you've never done this before, just make sure you do everything at the same SAMPLE rate and BIT depth thru the audio process. AND, i recommend you add a 2-pop and tail-pop to the session to assure an easy re-sync after the mix is done.

cheers
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