Channels & Paths
A path can be a Channel, Stem, Aux, or Master.
The way in which you use path types is completely up to you, but in the beginning you may want to think of the following workflow:
- Channels are the input sources.
- Stems are internal busses and sends (effects, parallel processing, audio sub groups, etc).
- Auxes are external destinations (foldback, IEM's, wedges, communications).
- Masters are the main mix buses.
- Matrices are the final ultimate output to the world.
Each path has a Full or Dry compliment of available processing. This allows for efficient use of resources:
- Full paths have all signal processing available (EQ, dynamics, delay, etc).
- Dry paths have no signal processing, but still have gain, pan, and two inserts.
Some audio paths are independent of the main pool; in other words, you get these for free! These are Talkback, Solo and Matrix paths. VCA's also, naturally, do not count against the audio path pool.
The diagram below summarizes path structure and signal flow:
Note: Stems are unique in that they can be sent to other Stems. This allows for extensive audio sub grouping.
Variable Send Level refers to if the source path has send controls to this path type (versus a fixed unity gain send). Consider the semantic difference between a send vs. a bus: traditionally, a send has independent level control, whereas a bus does not.
For example, you have trim when sending from a Channel to Stems or Auxes, but not when you bus a channel to a Master. Masters are a bus (not a send) and are therefore post fader, just like on any other console!
Routable source & destination refers to any signal that is routed using the routing dialog rather than operator send or bus-type controls. Routables include both physical I/O and console virtual I/O (the effects rack, postfader paths, for example).