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MADI powers the audio at InniBos festival

MADI powers the audio at InniBos festival

MADI powers the audio at InniBos festival

South Africa:

The five-day InniBos festival taking place at the end of this month, the largest of its kind in South Africa attracting main stage crowds of around 35,000 people per show, will see Direct.Out’s M.1K2 MADI Routing System at the heart of the audio operation. Originally devised for the studio, MADI has since migrated into live sound and underpins some major events around the world. It has supported InniBos annually since 2016.

‘My journey to large-format MADI solutions started in 2013 when Wild & Marr suggested I buy an M.1K2 router to split signal from my MADI stagebox to multiple digital consoles and audio recorders,’ recalls sound engineer, Gabriel Le Roux. ‘After using the router for a few weeks, I began to realise the immense power and flexibility of the unit, and my signal distribution designs became more complex. Within a short space of time we started integrating Soundcraft, DiGiCo, Yamaha, Studer, Allen & Heath, Avid, Midas (via DN9650) and other systems.’

This ‘MADI methodology’ allowed technical suppliers to reduce the amount of gear needed on a production, with digital splitting made possible between any MADI enabled consoles and stageracks using the M.1K2 and basic clocking protocols.

When an M.1K2 was chosen for the reality TV show The Voice in 2015, Le Roux was called in to assist with the integration of the system’s design. ‘This was a light bulb moment,’ he says. ‘We were forced into more complex matrixing as most of the consoles only had two or three MADI input/output ports and we needed to consolidate an average of five sources plus tie-lines between four consoles and other playback, recording and video gear. We also had comms and loudness metering routed via by the M.1K2.’

The first fully integrated MADI system for the five-day InniBos Festival followed in 2016. The same routing model was then used for larger and well-known theatre-style productions, which can require a year of planning and often up to six months of off-line lighting and video programming.

‘I was brought in on a freelance basis to assist with control systems integration in these productions,’ explains Le Roux. ‘My main objective was simple yet stable integration of the different production elements, and the highest possible level of redundancy. The Direct.Out M.1K2 router was introduced in this kind of events in 2016 and has become the heart for all the audio routing. The only remaining analogue signal is the short run from stage to the inputs of the stage-racks and the emergency talkback system – all other audio is routed digitally via the M.1K2.’

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