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Articles March-April 2021

Step Inside the All New Mondosonic Studio

The all new Mondosonic Studio, located in Ottapalam, Kerela, is a custom Music Production Facility and Studio. With Recording Equipment, Workflows..... read more

Bishwadeep Conceptualizes Sound Design in the Box

Having spent most of his career in Song and Music Recording, Bishwadeep Dipak Chatterjee was constantly toying with the idea of getting involved in designing sound for films..... read more

Celto Acoustique

Established in 2011, CELTO Acoustique is a premium manufacturer of professional audio products for the events and install industry. Founder, owner and CEO - Arthur Felix first displayed his entrepreneurial skills at the age of 14 when he built..... read more

Acoustically OdBle

With Vijay Benegal and Mujeeb Dadarkar

Vijay Benegal and Mujeeb Dadarkar have between them more than 4 decades of extensive experience in the audio industry in India. They have done it all, from recording and mixing for ad films, to doing live sound for renowned artistes..... read more

All About Music, the Marantz Story

In conversation with Joel Sietsem and Alankara Santhana

Marantz has established a strong foundation in the industry with their High fidelity audio systems since the 1970s. Marantz designs products that have intricate detail..... read more

Acoustic and Audio System Design for Small Rooms - PART 6

By - Rahul Sarma, CEO, Menura Acoustic Labs in collaboration with Sound Wizard

We started this series with the definition of a small room, and went on to discuss wave interactions. We continued onto sound isolation, absorption and diffusion in parts 2 and 3. Parts 4 and 5 covered system design goals and finally how to optimize a system..... read more

Studio Showcase

If you had a sign above every Studio door saying ‘This studio is a Musical Instrument’ it would make such a different approach to recording.” - Brian Eno..... read more

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11 Questions with Aidan Williams ------- March April 2018 Issue!

Founder and Imaginator, Aidan Williams, fields 11 questions from Anil Chopra, Editor, PALM Technology, on Dante’s intrigue. The insight and in-depth revelations on networking in cyber space is future proof stuff.

1. Has Audinate absolved the audio signal from purgatory? Was it a moment of epiphany that allowed you to brand your networking software as Dante? To cut to the chase could you succinctly explain exactly which code Dante cracked?
Founder and Imaginator, Aidan Williams

Audio signals are trapped inside analogue cables today – they need to be freed! Dante allows audio signals to roam freely across the wide expanses of data networks installed by our IT cousins.

The technical innovation behind Dante comes in a few parts. Firstly, we developed techniques for sending audio through standard IT networks with such low delay and tight synchronization that it is indistinguishable from running an analogue wire between the devices. Secondly, we developed plug and play and self-configuration techniques that made Dante really easy to use. We knew that the networking needed to be bulletproof and easy to use for AV professionals who don’t spend their lives in IT environments. Finally, we package up our solutions into a toolbox of solutions (cards, chips, modules, software) that are really easy for manufacturers and integrators to use.

2. Ethernet data transfer rates have increased from the original 2.94 megabits per second (Mbit/s)[3] to the latest 400 gigabits per second (Gbit/s). Can we ascribe all the miraculous Dante features to this fantastic leap in Data transfer?

Some, but by no means al. It is certainly the case that increasing Ethernet speed enables higher performance media networking – both audio and video. For example, a single gigabit Ethernet cable can support over 512 audio channels. However, higher speed networks do not solve the problems we were addressing when we developed Dante (see above).

3. Are there some magical alloys in the hardware that account for the incredible specs Audinate offers?

In some cases, yes. The highest performance Dante solutions use programmable hardware chips called Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) to provide wire speed packet processing for hundreds of audio channels with only a few hundred microseconds of latency and microsecond synchronization. In the case of PC and Mac software, we relax those performance requirements quite a bit!

4. Is optical fibre necessary to exploit Dante hardware and software features to their optimum?

Certainly not – many people use CAT5/6/7 Ethernet cabling very successfully with Dante. A bonus of using copper cabling is that power can also be supplied to the device with the network cable using Power over Ethernet (PoE).

5.Did the design revelation occur at Motorola or NICTA? Or your work on real-time transfer protocol (RTP) on zero configuration networking while at IETF? Can you tell us how these various organisations contributed to the concept of Dante?

When I was at Motorola Labs, I was working in the IETF on zero configuration networking – the plug and play networking technology now seen in many products (e.g. Apples Bonjour). I was also working in other areas – IPv6 networking and reliable multicast. The Dante project however, began at NICTA (now part of the Australian CSIRO research lab). The work we did at NICTA was entirely new, particularly around the synchronization and low delay aspects to ensure the required level of performance. It was very helpful to have a background in Internet Protocols and standardization, so one could consider Motorola contributed to Dante by training us well!

6. Are you at heart an engineer hell (pun intended) bent on becoming rich on the revelation or are you really a philosopher poet?

More along the philosopher poet line I think.. 😉 I’m more motivated by the possibility of transforming the AV industry rather than by money. There really is a much better way to build AV systems than using piles of boxes and analogue cables! If we get it right, the money will take care of itself and along the way we will build a good company that employs many people.

7. You seemed to have conquered all the brands, who seem happy to be in your stables! Can you give us a downside on this (if any)? or better from the horse’s mouth which is the best competition to Dante?

Right now, the competition is really analogue cabling. Many integrators still design systems they way they have done for many years – with analogue cables. Fortunately, when they try Dante for the first time, they discover that Dante makes the networking part easy, but we still need to convince them to make that first step.

8. It would be nice if you could recount some unique audio networking solutions Dante configured?

This one is fun: They have lots of different types of equipment all hooked together with Dante. You’d have to be careful when upgrading the equipment in the lion enclosure!

9. Would you say Dante is “extremely affordable” or “rather expensive”?

This often depends on the system. In many installations Dante greatly reduces cabling and installation costs – because the network is already there or because only a single set of cabling is needed. At Audinate, we continue to work on reducing the cost of Dante networking. I look forward to the day when AV products are no longer burdened by the cost of all those analogue connectors and converter chips – those things are expensive! Check out our new AVIO products – these are very cost effective products for adding Dante to existing systems.

10. At what level do you think the Indian market is? Is broadband speed in India still a hurdle or are other areas still backward?

I’m not intimately familiar with the AV market in India, however India has a strong reputation for IT knowledge, so I would expect technologies like Dante to be readily accepted and used in the Indian market. Broadband speed is not a big concern, because mostly people want to send audio signals around inside a building or a campus using fairly high speed local networks. High speed broadband would really only be necessary for sending audio between geographically distant sites.

11. What is your vision for Audinate going forward?

At Audinate, we really want to enable the use of IT technology in AV systems. Networking is an enabler and has the potentially to totally change the way that people design and deploy AV systems for the better. Widespread use of networking enables people to do more with less but still improve the quality of AV solutions.