What are the commands to switch a VMIX input On and Off?
You need to connect to the Engine on TCP port 4010. When the connection is opened send the login command:
LOGIN UNIT USER="user",PWD="yourenginepassword"
Then use the following commands to control the VMIX:
SET VMIX.SUB#2.IN#1 State=OFF
SET VMIX.SUB#2.IN#1 State=ON
What are the custom channel numbers to send from PathFinder to perform special functions on Uk Elements?
Channel 32002: Controls the on-air state of the console.
Channel 32003: Controls the Element External Preview audio input, for routing inbound talkback to the preview bus.
Channel 32004: Activate when sending talkback from the Element, causes CR speakers to be dimmed and Talk lamp to activate.
How many studios are running Axia now?
As of April, 2013, there are over 4,000 installed studios worth of Axia equipment. The adoption
curve is still moving sharply upward, so by the time you read this, there are likely to be many
more. In fact, there are more Axia IP‐Audio consoles and routing networks on the air than any other brand – by a pretty wide margin. Many other people are using Axia gear for non‐studio applications, like fiber or microwave links. Some have built routing switchers.
Are those customers happy?
Very! Axia systems are faster to install than traditional routing setups, work reliably and are easy to reconfigure. Why not talk to the people actually using it and see what they have to say? We'll be happy to provide you with a list of references upon request.
You talk about a “distributed system design philosophy.” What’s that about?
We listen to broadcasters. We realize that every station’s needs are different; one size does not fit all! Our design philosophy is to give you the cool stuff you want at a price that’s right — Axia will never try to “upsell you” on capabilities you don’t need. Some companies try to squeeze functions into their gear that clients don’t need or want, which leads to increased cost when designing systems.
For instance, with Axia, if you need “hard” audio I/O, you can purchase an xNode AoIP interface, designed with a compact form‐factor that eliminates unnecessary ports and keeps costs down. If you need “soft” I/O, you can purchase an Axia IP‐Audio Driver, to allow PC workstations to share
audio with your studio network. If you need studio intercom capabilities, you can purchase an IP Intercom station for your rack or desktop. You get to choose exactly how much of everything you want, which saves you money and keeps system complexity down.
I've heard that Axia is the easiest AoIP system to set up. Tell me why.
Axia believes that studio equipment should be powerful, but easy to use. So we’ve made system setup as simple as possible. For example, our xSwitch Ethernet switch (along with the network switches built into our PowerStation and QOR mixing engines) requires no switch programming – it’s pre‐configured from the factory. Our xNode audio interfaces have one‐button setup – just
press a button, give the device a nickname, and it configures itself. We also have a PC application, iProbe, which can query and document each device on your network, and enable you to adjust settings and options from the convenience of your PC or laptop. iProbe can even manage full system configuration backups and automatic software updates for you. It doesn’t
get much easier than that.
I've heard that Axia costs a lot less than traditional studio systems. What did you leave out?
Nothing. Our cost savings compared to traditional routers are achieved by using standard, off the shelf switching hardware rather than custom‐built solutions. It's a lot less expensive to use standard Ethernet for signal switching and transport than it is to construct a customized crosspoint routing switcher, with its cards, frame and peripherals. This is the same principle that has driven almost all stations to use PCs for audio playout and editing – they are a lot cheaper and more powerful than any broadcast‐industry specific machine could be.
Another way Axia saves money lies in the way PC audio is handled. With a traditional router, PC audio must be brought in through a router input card or console module; bringing multiple channels of audio into the system in this manner (from workstations or digital delivery systems) can significantly increase the overall cost of the system.
Instead, we wrote an IP‐Audio Driver for Windows PCs that looks just like a sound card to the OS, but streams audio in and out of the computer's network card instead. Or, if you need the realtime MPEG compression or time compression features of a high‐end sound card, our partner AudioScience makes an audio card with a Livewire output that plugs directly into the Axia network. Either of these approaches eliminates the cost of the I/O needed to get audio into the
switching network. So Axia clients usually realize several thousand dollars worth of savings over and above the cost of the sound cards themselves.
I’ve been told that Axia systems connect to products from multiple software and hardware partners. Why is this an advantage?
Audio networks have a lot of cool advantages: they’re flexible, configurable, highly resource efficient, and deployment versus traditional systems saves money by reducing significant amounts of time, labor and materials. Axia’s vision, from Day One, has been a world where all broadcast equipment connects together natively. It’s a big advantage to simply plug your console, phone system, audio processor, satellite receiver, playout PC, et. cetera, into the network and begin sharing multiple channels of bi‐directional audio over a single connection. And we’ve assembled a huge family of partners (over 60 as this is written) who see things the same way, and have built Livewire interfaces directly into their hardware and software products. One click of an RJ‐45, and these products are ready to start making broadcast audio. And we’ve partnered with RAVENNA, the networking protocol developed by ALCNetworx, to further expand the equipment options available to broadcasters.
Other companies with IP‐Audio networking schemes have a few partners, too, but not many — they’d really rather sell you more gear, in the form of audio interfaces to connect your equipment. Seems a little cynical, doesn’t it?
Are there cooling fans in your equipment? Can I put your network gear in the studio?
All Axia equipment, from our console mixing engines to our audio interfaces, is fan‐free. We select heavy‐duty power supplies designed for high‐availability service in harsh conditions (think: untended telecom gear deployed in the desert), and then design passive cooling systems to dissipate heat efficiently. Naturally, they’re utterly silent, so you can locate them anywhere – even in the studio.
I've heard that with Axia, latency increases whenever you add inputs. The more sources you add, the higher the delay.
No, Livewire's latency remains fixed at the same low value regardless of the channel count. You can run a system with a thousand channels and the latency will be the same as for a single stereo stream. Indeed, the delay is so consistent that channel‐to‐channel phase shift is less than 1/4 sample. The total latency of an analog input to analog output using the Axia Livestream format is about 2.75 milliseconds:
- The time through the A/D and D/A converters is about 1.5 ms.
- The network transit time is 1.25 ms.
To put this into perspective, the analog input to output latency on a self‐contained BMX‐Digital is about 1.75 milliseconds; modern, high end audio processors typically clock in with around 10 ms. delay (and talent regularly monitors those on‐air).