The M-Audio ProFire 610 features an on-board DSP mixer, giving you an extra level of flexibility and improving the overall performance of your system. This article demonstrates how the Profire's control panel can be used to customize your monitoring experience through a variety of output routing options.
- Hardware Connections
- DSP Mixer Overview
- Routing Options & Configuration
- Warranty & Technical Support Information
The M-Audio Profire 610 hardware offers a total of six channels of input and ten channels of output. For the purpose of this guide, we will cover the analog connections only. There are two combination inputs on the front of the unit for connecting microphones or high-impedance instrument inputs. On the back, there is a pair of line-level inputs (channels 3/4). Of the ten total available outputs, eight of these have 1/4" TRS connectors. Additionally, there are two built-in stereo headphone outputs on the front panel. Headphone Output 1 will pass the same signal as Analog Out 1/2, and similarly, Headphone Output 2 will pass the same signal as Analog Output 3/4. We will look at how to further configure this later.
The easiest way to understand how the DSP mixer works is to think of it as a physical mixing board, located in between your DAW and the ports on the hardware. Each physical connection on the interface has a corresponding channel in the software control panel.
So, what is the purpose of this window?
Signal Flow Flexibility
Audio set to a specific output in your DAW will be routed to that particular Software Return, which can be turned up or down across any of the Analog Outputs. This allows for the freedom and flexibility to re-assign where sound is coming from and where it is going, without the need to continually re-connect cables as one would with a large analog console or patchbay.
Audio that is passing from your DAW's main output, by default, will be sent to Software Return 1/2. Therefore, the most common monitoring setup will be as follows:
- Connect your studio monitors to Line Outputs 1/2 on the rear panel.
- Connect your headphones to Headphone 1 on the front panel.
- Turn up both the Headphones Level 1 and the Master Volume knobs.
*Note: In this configuration, the Master Volume knob will control the level to the speakers as well as the level of the headphones. If your master volume knob is turned down, you will not hear anything from the headphones.
When collaborating on a recording, you may find that two people need to be listening to the same signal in each of the headphones.
- Under the Analog Out 1/2 tab, make sure Software Return 1/2 is turned up.
- Now, set Analog Out 3/4 exactly the same as we did in the Analog Out 1/2 tab (this will send the software's audio to this channel as well).
Both of the headphones outputs will now share the same main-output signal.
To allow the headphone volume to be controlled independently from that of your studio monitors, we must first take note that Headphone 1 receives its signal from Analog Out 1/2, and Headphone 2 receives signal from Analog Out 3/4. (Keep this in mind if later setting up a larger headphone distribution amplifier!)
- If you have not done so already, turn off your monitor speakers.
- Connect your studio monitors to Line Outputs 5 & 6 on the back of the interface.
- Turn up the level for Software Return 1/2 in the Analog Out 5/6 tab of the DSP mixer.
- On the Settings tab, in the box titled MASTER VOLUME KNOB, un-check ANALOG OUT 1/2 and ANALOG OUT 3/4.
- You will be prompted with a warning message stating that full-scale audio will be sent to the outputs. If you have powered off or at least turned down your monitors, select Full Scale.
You now will be able to adjust the volume of your headphones and studio monitors independently of each other using the respective volume knobs on the Profire 610.
Many musicians and recording artists often choose to listen to their work on different speakers to help find that "perfect mix". Lets now look at how to switch between two sets of studio monitors without the need for additional hardware.
- Connect a second set of monitor speakers to Line Outputs 7 & 8.
- Turn up the level for Software Return 1/2 in the Analog Out 7/8 tab.
The monitor signal can now be adjusted via the Master Out volume slider on either of the monitors' respective Analog Output tab. Simply turn down one set, and turn up the other.
Congratulations! You now have the ability to independently monitor and control two sets of headphones and two sets of speakers. Happy mixing!
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