How do I setup outboard mixing gear in RSN11?

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Tobtok
Posts: 5
Joined: 02 Nov 2020

Post 02 Nov 2020

Hi!

I just bought a SSL Fusion and are trying to set it up correctly in Reason 11 but can't seem to find any tutorial or simple way to do it, it's my first time and attempt to mix outside the box. Could someone explain to me as simple as possible how to set it up?

I got the input of the SSL going in the 7/8 output on my RME Fireface 802 and the output of the SSL going to the RME input 7/8.

Thanks in advance! :essentials:

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selig
RE Developer
Posts: 8880
Joined: 15 Jan 2015
Location: The NorthWoods, CT, USA

Post 02 Nov 2020

OK, First, this is not "outboard mixing", it is more like mastering since Fusion only has a stereo input/output and thus no way to sum/mix outside the box.
Basically you want to create an Audio Track to record the results of Fusion which you should set to Stereo and inputs 7/8. But first, you will need to create an Bus Channel to SEND the mix out to Fusion, patching it's outputs to the Hardware Interface Out 7/8. Using the Bus Channel to send to Fusion will bypass the master section (for now) which is necessary to avoid feedback loops. Finally you'll likely want to use a brick wall limiter in the Master Insert or after the Master Output but before the Hardware Interface out 1/2.
Once you have this setup, you'll need to record the mix through Fusion back to the Audio Track. Once you do this, you can export the mix as before. The reason you cannot export the mix when running through Fusion is that the export function operates faster than real time and you want Fusion to operate in real time.

There are many other ways you could choose to configure your setup - you could add another Audio Track to record the output of the entire mix, but care would need to be take to prevent a feedback loop (muting the audio track while recording, or using manual monitoring and not monitoring that channel).

You'll also want an accurate way of documenting your Fusion panel settings in cases where you may want to revisit the mix, and thus re-print the mix through Fusion (since it cannot store panel settings internally).

I'm happy to give further details if this isn't clear or if you want to explore other options - there are plenty of ways to set this up, maybe others will chime in with alternative/better setups! :)
Selig Audio, LLC

Tobtok
Posts: 5
Joined: 02 Nov 2020

Post 02 Nov 2020

selig wrote:
02 Nov 2020
OK, First, this is not "outboard mixing", it is more like mastering since Fusion only has a stereo input/output and thus no way to sum/mix outside the box.
Basically you want to create an Audio Track to record the results of Fusion which you should set to Stereo and inputs 7/8. But first, you will need to create an Bus Channel to SEND the mix out to Fusion, patching it's outputs to the Hardware Interface Out 7/8. Using the Bus Channel to send to Fusion will bypass the master section (for now) which is necessary to avoid feedback loops. Finally you'll likely want to use a brick wall limiter in the Master Insert or after the Master Output but before the Hardware Interface out 1/2.
Once you have this setup, you'll need to record the mix through Fusion back to the Audio Track. Once you do this, you can export the mix as before. The reason you cannot export the mix when running through Fusion is that the export function operates faster than real time and you want Fusion to operate in real time.

There are many other ways you could choose to configure your setup - you could add another Audio Track to record the output of the entire mix, but care would need to be take to prevent a feedback loop (muting the audio track while recording, or using manual monitoring and not monitoring that channel).

You'll also want an accurate way of documenting your Fusion panel settings in cases where you may want to revisit the mix, and thus re-print the mix through Fusion (since it cannot store panel settings internally).

I'm happy to give further details if this isn't clear or if you want to explore other options - there are plenty of ways to set this up, maybe others will chime in with alternative/better setups! :)

Thanks a lot for the explanation! The way I would like to use the SSL is to easily apply it to any of my mixing channels in reason. For example I got a audio-track with a vocal on it and I want to run it through my SSL and then record it back with the applied FX. How would be the easiest way to set that up?

MusicBocs
Posts: 29
Joined: 20 Jan 2015

Post 02 Nov 2020

"Basically you want to create an Audio Track to record the results of Fusion which you should set to Stereo and inputs 7/8. But first, you will need to create an Bus Channel to SEND the mix out to Fusion, patching it's outputs to the Hardware Interface Out 7/8. Using the Bus Channel to send to Fusion will bypass the master section (for now) which is necessary to avoid feedback loops."

User avatar
selig
RE Developer
Posts: 8880
Joined: 15 Jan 2015
Location: The NorthWoods, CT, USA

Post 02 Nov 2020

Tobtok wrote:
02 Nov 2020
Thanks a lot for the explanation! The way I would like to use the SSL is to easily apply it to any of my mixing channels in reason. For example I got a audio-track with a vocal on it and I want to run it through my SSL and then record it back with the applied FX. How would be the easiest way to set that up?
Similar to how I described it. Keeping it on 7/8 is still a good idea. The first question is where to "tap" the vocal for what you're wanting to do. I would personally consider using the Parallel Out on the vocal channel patched directly to the Hardware Interface 7/8. Then create a new channel/track for input 7/8 - also consider just using channel 7 since you don't need a stereo channel for a vocal. You'll probably want to monitor the vocal on Fusion, and again you have a few options depending on what other processing you're using and whether you want to monitor that processing as you work with Fusion.

One setup could be to take the Direct Output of the vocal channel so Fusion would be "post everything", as opposed to the "pre everything" approach using the Parallel Out jacks. You can also setup a hybrid processing order using the Channel Insert point - but in ALL cases you'll need to record the results via an Audio Track so you can then use Fusion for other channels, and as always document your Fusion settings in case you need to return to them at some point.

So the first questions are: what other processing is on your vocal, and where in the signal path do you want to add Fusion? The second would be more about workflow and how often you would be using Fusion, along with how often you would be re-visiting settings after recording to a new channel? For example, you may want to process the vocal "live" for as long as possible towards the end of the mix process, only "printing" it when you're done with the mix. This would of course depend on how much Fusion is contributing to the sound and how much you may need to make adjustments as the mix progresses.

We are so used to not committing to processing during the mix thanks to the DAW approach that it can take some getting used to "committing" to things too early in the process. OTOH, if you've ever worked on tape, you'll very likely be totally comfortable with committing to settings early and just making the work! Bottom line, the workflow will depend on your expectations and how you like to work, which may not be totally known until you get everything set up and try a few different scenarios! Hopefully I've described things clearly, if not please don't hesitate to ask for clarification! :)

[EDIT - you would also set up the mixer so that send 8 feeds Fusion, that way you won't need to re-patch everything but you WILL need to be aware of other processing on the channel, for the situation where you may want to send only the "raw" audio to Fusion so it's the first process in the signal path - make sense?]
Selig Audio, LLC

Tobtok
Posts: 5
Joined: 02 Nov 2020

Post 02 Nov 2020

MusicBocs wrote:
02 Nov 2020
"Basically you want to create an Audio Track to record the results of Fusion which you should set to Stereo and inputs 7/8. But first, you will need to create an Bus Channel to SEND the mix out to Fusion, patching it's outputs to the Hardware Interface Out 7/8. Using the Bus Channel to send to Fusion will bypass the master section (for now) which is necessary to avoid feedback loops."
Doesn't quite make sense to me. I'm completely new to this and I can't get it to work (it seems like I need it explained like I'm a kid hehe). RME's software is ridiciously complicated and I can't seem to route it correctly. I re-routed it do output/input used for the SSL is 1/2 on both input and output but nothing makes sense haha.

Sorry about my confusion but I'm beyond frustrated...

Tobtok
Posts: 5
Joined: 02 Nov 2020

Post 02 Nov 2020

selig wrote:
02 Nov 2020
Tobtok wrote:
02 Nov 2020
Thanks a lot for the explanation! The way I would like to use the SSL is to easily apply it to any of my mixing channels in reason. For example I got a audio-track with a vocal on it and I want to run it through my SSL and then record it back with the applied FX. How would be the easiest way to set that up?
Similar to how I described it. Keeping it on 7/8 is still a good idea. The first question is where to "tap" the vocal for what you're wanting to do. I would personally consider using the Parallel Out on the vocal channel patched directly to the Hardware Interface 7/8. Then create a new channel/track for input 7/8 - also consider just using channel 7 since you don't need a stereo channel for a vocal. You'll probably want to monitor the vocal on Fusion, and again you have a few options depending on what other processing you're using and whether you want to monitor that processing as you work with Fusion.

One setup could be to take the Direct Output of the vocal channel so Fusion would be "post everything", as opposed to the "pre everything" approach using the Parallel Out jacks. You can also setup a hybrid processing order using the Channel Insert point - but in ALL cases you'll need to record the results via an Audio Track so you can then use Fusion for other channels, and as always document your Fusion settings in case you need to return to them at some point.

So the first questions are: what other processing is on your vocal, and where in the signal path do you want to add Fusion? The second would be more about workflow and how often you would be using Fusion, along with how often you would be re-visiting settings after recording to a new channel? For example, you may want to process the vocal "live" for as long as possible towards the end of the mix process, only "printing" it when you're done with the mix. This would of course depend on how much Fusion is contributing to the sound and how much you may need to make adjustments as the mix progresses.

We are so used to not committing to processing during the mix thanks to the DAW approach that it can take some getting used to "committing" to things too early in the process. OTOH, if you've ever worked on tape, you'll very likely be totally comfortable with committing to settings early and just making the work! Bottom line, the workflow will depend on your expectations and how you like to work, which may not be totally known until you get everything set up and try a few different scenarios! Hopefully I've described things clearly, if not please don't hesitate to ask for clarification! :)

[EDIT - you would also set up the mixer so that send 8 feeds Fusion, that way you won't need to re-patch everything but you WILL need to be aware of other processing on the channel, for the situation where you may want to send only the "raw" audio to Fusion so it's the first process in the signal path - make sense?]
In Reason I can only route a mixing channel to the master-bus it seems. But when I route the master to output 1/2 (SSL) I hear it but don't hear any processing FX which is super-weird. Seems like I haven't set it up properly in RME TotalMix (Which I dread).

User avatar
selig
RE Developer
Posts: 8880
Joined: 15 Jan 2015
Location: The NorthWoods, CT, USA

Post 02 Nov 2020

Tobtok wrote:
02 Nov 2020
In Reason I can only route a mixing channel to the master-bus it seems. But when I route the master to output 1/2 (SSL) I hear it but don't hear any processing FX which is super-weird. Seems like I haven't set it up properly in RME TotalMix (Which I dread).
You can create a Bus Channel by selecting "NEW OUTPUT BUS" instead of "MASTER SECTION". In the Rack View, click on Master Section and you'll see the popup for creating a new output bus.
You can also create a routing using the cables on the back of the rack (hit TAB from Rack View). You can use the Direct Outs with are "post everything", or you can use the Parallel Out which are "pre everything".

I'm assuming you're very well familiar with the basics of signal routing since you're wanting to go beyond what the DAW can do by adding external gear. The only "challange" will be in translating what you know into the "Reason" way, which is the case whenever one changes DAWs!

I can draw a signal processing path once you decide how you want Fusion routed in your audio path, which will help in understanding how Reason does things…
:)
Selig Audio, LLC

Tobtok
Posts: 5
Joined: 02 Nov 2020

Post 02 Nov 2020

selig wrote:
02 Nov 2020
Tobtok wrote:
02 Nov 2020
In Reason I can only route a mixing channel to the master-bus it seems. But when I route the master to output 1/2 (SSL) I hear it but don't hear any processing FX which is super-weird. Seems like I haven't set it up properly in RME TotalMix (Which I dread).
You can create a Bus Channel by selecting "NEW OUTPUT BUS" instead of "MASTER SECTION". In the Rack View, click on Master Section and you'll see the popup for creating a new output bus.
You can also create a routing using the cables on the back of the rack (hit TAB from Rack View). You can use the Direct Outs with are "post everything", or you can use the Parallel Out which are "pre everything".

I'm assuming you're very well familiar with the basics of signal routing since you're wanting to go beyond what the DAW can do by adding external gear. The only "challange" will be in translating what you know into the "Reason" way, which is the case whenever one changes DAWs!

I can draw a signal processing path once you decide how you want Fusion routed in your audio path, which will help in understanding how Reason does things…
:)

The funny thing is that I've been using Reason for 10 years now and still much doesn't make any sense to me in the program. So now on the RME Fireface 802 I got the following routing:

SSL input going into 7/8 output on RME
SSL output going into 7/8 input on RME

(it seems like my default monitor output in windows goes to 1/2 so didn't work to use those for the SSL)

This is a printscreen of my default settings:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/vo6fa26v4salfpk/1.JPG?dl=0

The thing is when I route the master output from reason to output 7/8 in logically the sounds should go into the SSL? But the sound just keeps playing on my monitors and nothing happens in the SSL.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/lo9p14l90pbial5/2.JPG?dl=0

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