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Connecting DSP to Amplifiers & Surge/Power Advice

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URL: https://forum.speakerplans.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=107654
Printed Date: 03 March 2024 at 12:32am
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Topic: Connecting DSP to Amplifiers & Surge/Power Advice
Posted By: SnailSpace
Subject: Connecting DSP to Amplifiers & Surge/Power Advice
Date Posted: 25 January 2023 at 12:04pm
Hello again

Ok so for those of you that aren’t familiar with my previous post, I’m currently making the step up to creating a sound system with dedicated Bass/Mid/High and have been gathering the relevant gear. So in simple terms I’m now at a stage that I have my Speakers connected to the Power Amps.
But I’m new to the world of the DSP I have bought a ‘dB-Mark XCA 28 (8in 2out)’ and struggling to find much on the topic of setting up a DSP to Power Amps then to Pre Amp & Mixer.

So Im guessing I link the OUT’s of each amp to a Channel on the back of the DSP, High Amp to Ch1’s IN, MID Amp to Ch2’s IN, BASS to Ch3.
Then do I use one of the DSP’s Outs to go to the Pre Amp which the mixer is plugged into?

Also because I now have:
Turntable
Mixer
Pre Amp
DSP
QSC 900
QSC GX3
Crown XLI 3500
All with power and kettle leads going into wall plugs (Im in the UK and have x2 dual wall sockets) Do I need to buy a Power Conditioner or will one of those 19” 6way 13A power Distribution do the trick? Or something else?

Thanks



Replies:
Posted By: msoundsystem
Date Posted: 25 January 2023 at 12:23pm
(Mono out config)

Also its 2 in 8 out not the other way around. 

Go...
Turntable into mixer.
Mixer into preamp
Preamp full range out (mono) into chan A input of dsp
Chan 1 out dsp to sub amp
Chan 2 out dsp to mid amp
Chan 3 dsp to high amp. 

Important to note .. if dsp in mono not stereo using only input A you will need to select all channel outputs to channel A of the dsp. 

If running mid highs in stereo then a different config is needed. 

You will only use one input to each amp and its then upto you to parallel the back of the amp so both sides see the same signal if in mono. 



For connecting it all up i would get a dedicated power distro. That has all the protection you need.  



Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 25 January 2023 at 1:43pm
Thanks msoundsystem

Confused by you saying mono though? Im configuring/wiring all Speakers in Stereo? Or am I missing something?

So are you saying because each DSP Channel has one XLR Out per channel it’s Mono? Yet the Amplifiers have x2 + & - Phono/Jacks? So how do I connect what type of cable? Is it a phono red&white to XLR?

and is a ‘dedicated power distro’ what I mentioned a glorified extension bar that goes in your rack?


Posted By: cravings
Date Posted: 25 January 2023 at 2:11pm
always best to think and describe things in the direction of signal flow.. out of mixer goes in to processor, outs of processor go in to amps, out of amps go in to speakers etc.


Posted By: Conanski
Date Posted: 25 January 2023 at 2:57pm
Why do you have a mixer and preamp? Seems redundant.

First get into the DSP and setup the routing, some processors will let you create any kind of custom config but with others if you select stereo 3-way for example it will assign the outputs as LMH LMH or it could be LLMMHH. Whatever the case once you know that you can connect the amplifiers to the appropriate outputs and begin setting up the processing. 


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 25 January 2023 at 3:14pm
I have a mixer and pre amp for immediate fine tuning of music as all records are recorded different?

What is difference between LMH LMH & LLMMHH? (Presume this means LowMediumHigh?)

*Remember to be afraid to talk to me like I’ve just been born as it’s all new to me!


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 25 January 2023 at 8:40pm
I think the basics of what I need to know seems to have been lost in the answers (or I’m not wording it right):


What leads do I need?

- my DSP has Male OUT’s

- my Amps have either Phono or 1/4 Jacks

So do I need a Female XLR to Phono lead & a Female XLR to 1/4 Jack x2 lead. 


Ch1 DSP XLR to High Amp Phono

Ch2 DSP XLR to Mid Amp 1/4 Jack

Ch3 DSP XLR to Mid Amp 1/4 Jack


Power Distro - can I use a £20 one from eBay  or are we talking a £400 Kelsey with Circuit Breaker in?



Posted By: Conanski
Date Posted: 26 January 2023 at 12:26am
Originally posted by SnailSpace SnailSpace wrote:

What is difference between LMH LMH & LLMMHH? (Presume this means LowMediumHigh?)
Yes.

It's the order of the physical outputs on the back of the unit, so for example in the first example output 1 is left low, 2 is left mid, 3 is left high, 4 is right low, 5 is right mid, 6 is right high. Outputs 7 and 8 are not used. 
In the second example output 1 is left low, 2 is right low, 3 is left mid, 4 is right mid, 5 is left high, 6 is right high. Again 7 and 8 are not used. 

So you don't have any amplifiers with XLR inputs?

If not then get XLR to TRS cables and a couple of TRS to RCA adapters for the amp with RCA inputs. 


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 26 January 2023 at 8:26am
Brilliant thanks Conanski.

Sorry yes the Crown xli3500 & g3 has XLR its the older QSC on TRS.


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 26 January 2023 at 10:58am
I have x2 input (Input 1 & input 2) on the back of the DSP do these work as Right and Left like the outputs or would I just have x1 ‘Input 1’ XLR to Phono cable going to mixer output? Or would I have a XLR input 1 going to Red Phono & XLR input 2 going to White Phono?


Posted By: csg
Date Posted: 26 January 2023 at 11:33am
You have two options here

Dj style- decks into mixer, stereo output into DSP, abd dsp to amps

Sound system style- decks into pre-amp, then pre-amp outputs either directly into amps, or via DSP if you want to fine tune your system
However, you will need the same number of DSP inputs as the number of ways on your pre-amp, so for a 4 way, you will need 2 DSP units each with 2 inputs etc

There are further potential issues when it comes to stacking filters from different processing units such as Pre-amps and speaker processors but that’s a whole new can of worms…


-------------
“The fact is this is about identifying what we do best and finding more ways of doing less of it better”


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 26 January 2023 at 4:10pm

I have the following as a Reggae set up as I can’t afford a Reggae Pre Amp:


X1 Vestax PDX 2000


19” Numark C3FX Professional 

(A good alternative to expensive pre amp for me, x4 channels - turntable, Mic, Dub Siren and it has some echo effects)


19” Gemini PA 700

(As Conanski says this is a bit redundant but I use the Bass/Mid/Treble to tweak mixer)

X2 outputs


dB-XCA 28 - 8 out 2 in


Amps


So I understand how to connect Amps to DSP.


I just need to know how to connect the DSP to the Pre Amp.


The DSP has x2 input (Input 1 & input 2)

The Pre Amp has x2 inputs 1&2 which are 2 sets of Phonos (2 red 2 white).


The two options of cables I can see have:

X1 XLR to Phono (Red & White)

or 

X1 XLR going to a red & X1 XLR going to White Phono.


How do I link 




Posted By: cravings
Date Posted: 26 January 2023 at 9:51pm
All playback stuff into numark mixer. Phono outs of mixer to phono ins of Gemini preamp thing. Xlr outs of Gemini thing to xlr ins of dsp. Etc. Probably?


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 26 January 2023 at 10:02pm
I have everything but the DSP set up and working fine it’s the edition of the DSP into the line that I’m asking about. It’s been established I now know I have to patch in the amps to the dsp via the OUTS but it’s how the DSP connects to the Pre Amp via the IN’s is it usually via x1 XLR IN or x2 XLR to 2 INs? What cable? Maybe I should repost with the dB-Mark Model in the title so anyone who owns one may be able to explain as the only videos on YouTube are mainly Malaysian.


Posted By: cravings
Date Posted: 27 January 2023 at 12:12am
it's really not that complicated. if you're connecting the gemini preamp thing to the dbmark.. use the xlr outs on the gemini to connect to the xlr ins on the dbmark. with xlr to xlr cables.


Posted By: Conanski
Date Posted: 27 January 2023 at 12:34am
Why don't you leave the preamp out for the time being, then connect the mixer XLR outs to the DSP inputs and you have a complete signal chain. Once you have all the DSP processing setup you won't need much EQ... and what is available on the mixer should be sufficient. 


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 27 January 2023 at 7:56am
My poor Pre Amp ha! Nobody seems to like it on here ;) I see what you’re saying though the mixer has dedicated balanced XLR outs.

I understand what people are saying about the Pre Amp as it is just extra Bass Mid Treble & Volume into the equation.

So what about Power - is a bog standard 19 power distribution bar enough for what I have or with turntable, mixer, dsp & x3 amps do I need some extra kit?


Posted By: JamesH
Date Posted: 27 January 2023 at 8:12am
I love a good pre
Who built it?

Oh, and, it's YOUR sound, so keep the pre in the rack


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 27 January 2023 at 8:39am
It’s not a ‘proper’ reggae/dub pre it’s a Gemini PA-700 so it’s basically a line of Bass/Mid/Treble and volume so I can see why people are saying it over complicates things as it probably adds extra variables that may mess with DSP sound settings.


Posted By: Conanski
Date Posted: 27 January 2023 at 2:38pm
Originally posted by SnailSpace SnailSpace wrote:

My poor Pre Amp ha! Nobody seems to like it on here ;) I see what you’re saying though the mixer has dedicated balanced XLR outs.

I understand what people are saying about the Pre Amp as it is just extra Bass Mid Treble & Volume into the equation.
Yes.. the mixer has all the same features and the preamp has nothing but unbalanced RCA I/O so it's not a great fit. 

Originally posted by SnailSpace SnailSpace wrote:

So what about Power - is a bog standard 19 power distribution bar enough for what I have or with turntable, mixer, dsp & x3 amps do I need some extra kit?
Put the amplifier rack on it's own dedicated circuit plugged directly in, and use a power bar for the rest of the equipment at home or a small UPS if playing out.


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 27 January 2023 at 8:39pm
Thanks Conanski! Next step learning to use the DSP LOL


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 28 January 2023 at 12:59am
Bought some XLR’s from a place online, but local for collection purposes, specialise in CCTV stuff but also has alot of Audio. But because they have sick a selection of XLRs I’ve read the description and it’s said ‘great for live and studio for when gear is close together’ exactly what I need? So I’ve got them, need to change as I’ve miscalculated lengths of a few short ones. So ive got to look and I’ve saw another section of Balanced XLRs? Do I need balanced?


Posted By: Conanski
Date Posted: 28 January 2023 at 2:16am
Yes any XLR cable you buy should be balanced which means it had wires connected to all 3 pins, these will typically have fairly small gauge wires inside(22-24ga) with a braided mesh shield. If the cable has heavy gauge wire and/or has only 2 conductors and no shield it is not suitable as an equipment interconnect.


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 28 January 2023 at 1:01pm
Phew! Great. Yes site shows the cross section which has copper and some silver. It just just be the wholesaler put up the description they get from manufacturers and it differed. 

For anyone in the UK the wholesaler is called KENABLE, they have lots of Audio components that crossover from CCTV. They come up in searches on eBay for audio a lot. I imagine as Audio bits have slowed down in UK I imagine CCTV & IT has filled a bit of a gap. 

Another thing I did buy was a set of Rack Mount Bolts but they are really for the CPU cases the ones that mount into squares and they are M6 bolts. But when I have got them home my bolts are smaller by 2mm, as I have circular hole format on my racks, searched around and only ones listed as Audio are M6. I think I must need M5, seems to be plenty on eBay. Again it’s all the little things that slow progressLOL




Posted By: Conanski
Date Posted: 28 January 2023 at 4:06pm
Search for "rack mount screws" they have a nylon(plastic} washer with them that prevents scratching the equipment.

You should also run a tap through the holes in your rack to measure it's size, this will also clean out any dirt or paint that has accumulated. 


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 28 January 2023 at 6:16pm
That’s the phrase I searched initially but they are all M6. After finding a chart M6 are 0.6mm wide mine measure at 0.5mm wide after measuring, so makes mine M5. They also sell them on Thomann and one of the reviews mentions they fit his older Thomann rack which one of mine is! Sorted!


Posted By: SnailSpace
Date Posted: 02 February 2023 at 10:11pm

I’ve bought a Power Distribution Unit which has  3 way power surge protection, it also has an ‘earth ground’ point.

I have my turntable earthed to my Mixer.

I notice that my older QSC 900 USA & dB-Mark DSP have ‘earth ground’ symbol but don’t see anything on QSC GX3 or Crown XLI 3500.

Where should I be grounding the PDU too (If at all?)


Also I’ve read a lot of debate online about what amp fuse (uk) to have in an iec (kettle) lead from amplifiers/gear etc going into a 13amp uk plug? General opinion in UK? Seems to be 10A online?




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