HAL Install in Divisible 300 Student Classroom at PNWU

Consultants at Sparling in Seattle designed a HAL1 system into a Pacific Northwest University lecture hall. Delta AV in Gresham, OR, are doing the installation. Two classrooms can be combined. Each room requires 75 push-to-talk mics for students – one at every other desk. The 150 student mics mute locally, and a variety of teachers’ mics and laptop RAD feeds tackle the instructor audio.PNWU Room Combine

Twenty-two AM2 gain-sharing automixers offer the ultimate solution. Continue reading

Georgia HAL Install – Moving the DR & RAD Locations Around

Or Hadash SanctuaryAri Newman at Shade Tree AV in Atlanta, Georgia, installed a HAL System in the Congregation Or Hadash in Sandy Springs, GA. Architectural firm BLDGS brought Shade Tree AV into the project to design a system that complemented the venue’s contemporary design.
The client wanted an audio system that could accommodate many different use scenarios, and the preset capabilities in HAL were the perfect choice. Continue reading

Using Fiber Media Converters with HAL1x’s Expansion Bus

TP-Link MC200CM

To exceed 100 meters (300 feet) distances between daisy-chained (yes, daisy-chained) EXP devices, you need an unmanaged, Gigabit Media Converter – either single-mode or multimode. The data pulsing through Rane’s Expansion Bus is not IP (Internet Protocol) and contains no MAC Addresses. Thus, you cannot connect it to an Ethernet network in any way. No Ethernet switches allowed. You must have a dedicated connection from the HAL1x to all subsequent EXP devices – up to 32 EXPs maximum.

Here is a very simple and inexpensive multimode fiber media converter we found on Amazon. The maker is TP-Link. Model number MC200CM. You need two of these – one at each end, of course. Plus the cable. We bought the blue cable, although, we’ve heard that the green cable sounds better? You’ll have to judge for yourself. Often terminating the cable is the biggest challenge – a favorite task for IT folks.

TP-LINK MC200CM Gigabit Media Converter

TP-LINK MC200CM Gigabit Media Converter

We’ve also successfully tested the Startech MCMGBSC055 which works great.

We do NOT recommend the Trend Net TFC-1000MGA – it does not work with our bus. This is where the “unmanaged” requirement fits in. If the device tries to inspect “Ethernet” packets to, for example, keep track of MAC Addresses that come and go, this is not compatible with Rane’s Expansion Bus. Our bus contains no MAC Addresses and no IP Addresses, nothing. Some but not all Managed converters allow you to turn off such packet inspections. If you’re working with IT networking folks, make this unmanaged requirement clear to them to avoid speed bumps on the Expansion Bus.

 

Know HAL #2: Plug it in, it works! (Remember analog audio?)

Remember when you could plug in a live audio cable and immediately you’d hear sound? This was before you needed an IP Address, software, a mouse or (gasp!) the correct firmware in all your devices before you could hear music. We do.

HAL's DR & RAD devices - just like analog. Yet unlike any digital audio device you know.

HAL’s DR & RAD devices – just like analog. Unlike any digital audio device you know.

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Rack Mounting Rane DR and RAD Devices

Often, Rane’s Decora Remote controls for HAL (e.g., DR1, DR2 or DR3 remotes and many RAD models) need to be placed in the rack room.

To mount them, get a hold of Lowell’s 19″ Punched Rack Panels – specifically, get the D9P-ID-3 model. This is a 3U panel that has nine holes for Decora devices.

NOTE: the D8P-ID-3 model does not work for any of Rane’s two-gang (or more) models. The spacing between the eight holes is not correct. Get the nine-position model.

The 9 position version offers the proper spacing for 2-gang or more DRs and RADs.

The nine- position version provides the proper spacing for 2-gang or more DRs and RADs.

To fill in the empty and unused holes, Lowell offers the DBB-4 pack of four blanks.

Blanks cover unused panel holes

Lowell’s DBB-4 blanks cover unused panel holes

For those craftsmen building custom Decora panels, here’s a drawing with dimensions:

Decora plate dimensions

Decora plate dimensions

HAL is Evolving (2013)

The significantly enhanced HAL1x Expansion Bus ships in the new EXP1x, EXP3x & EXP5x in April 2013. The new Bus supports daisy-chaining any combination of up to 32 EXPs, allows 512 x 512 audio channels, permits EXPs to be 100 meters (328 feet) apart, and supports unmanaged gigabit media converters (fiber) if EXPs need to be miles apart. This allows spreading HAL system audio and control I/O between distant equipment rooms in conference centers, campuses, classrooms, hotels, malls, arenas, sports centers, water parks, among others.

EXP5x Input & DSP Expander for HAL1x

EXP5x Input & DSP Expander for HAL1x

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Tip: Running Multiple Versions of Halogen on One Computer

Don’t you wish your installers could run any and every version of the DSP control software needed, at any job site they encounter, new or old? And do so without uninstalling and reinstalling anything? We did too. This is why Halogen allows running any and every version – one at a time – on the same computer. HAL knows.Halogen Logo

To install the newest Halogen software, yet still allow a previous version of Halogen to run on the same computer, follow these instructions:

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Installation at Radisson Blu Hotel, Minnesota

Rane’s HAL is running the audio at new the Radisson Blu Hotel next to the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota. With over 26,000 square feet of meeting and event space, HAL does considerably more that just open the pod bay doors.

Radisson image Artist Rendering

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Random Entropy – Factory Testing HAL

Here’s a HAL test rig. It’s been running 24/7 for 2.5 years now. Every 10 minutes or so, it changes a room combine wall and physically adjusts a DR3 remote using a stepper motor.

24/7 for 2.5+ years

24/7 for 2.5+ years

It’s a single HAL1 with 34 RADs in 4 EXP1s. Audio has been running for years, we’ve even been clipping several of the RADs just for yucks. Continue reading

Tech Topic – Rane DR3 LCD Screen Editing

The end user interface provided by Rane’s DR1, DR2 & DR3 remotes is what solves customer problems for sound contractors.

The Halogen software allows advanced customization to ease end user cognitive friction. Here’s how to use Halogen software to change what appears on the LCD screen.

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