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Articles September - October 2023

Capturing The True Essence Of Sound New!

From Lewitt Audio's Pure Tube Microphone to Sennheiser's Profile USB Microphone, these studio microphones offer precise audio quality to the users and deliver crisp, clear sound. read more

Articles September - October 2023

Photo Feature: Studio Showcase New!

From A.R. Rahman's studio in Mumbai to composer Raag Sethi's first Dolby-compliant studio in Gujarat, PALM Expo Magazine's Studio Showcase features the latest studios in India. read more

Articles September - October 2023

Mastering The Art Of Sound With Donal Whelan New!

Whelan talks to the PALM Expo Magazine Team and discusses his foray into the world of mastering, his unique experience at the PALM Conference 2023, and more. read more

Articles September - October 2023

Nx Audio Celebrates Two Decades Of Pro Audio Journey New!

Nx Audio completes 20 years of delivering pro audio products for the Indian pro sound industry. Read about Nx Audio's journey over the last two decades. read more

Articles September - October 2023

Mumbai Studio Explores New Verticals With Genelec Monitors New!

The combination of Genelec Smart Active Monitors and digital audio interface delivered an ideal monitoring solution for BOING Recording Studios. read more

Articles September - October 2023

IRAA Awards 2023: Jury Reflections New!

Read about IRAA Jury's perspective on the bigger questions in the music industry - AI for music production, the status of mega consoles, & emerging trends in sound recording & mixing. read more

Articles September - October 2023

Gray Spark Audio Opens New Studio For Academy Students New!

PALM Expo Magazine Team talks to Ronak Runwal to explore how the newly-designed Studio D is poised to become a recording haven for the academy students. read more

Articles September - October 2023

Firdaus Studio: Building A Sonic Paradise For Recording Artists New!

The Firdaus Studio by A.R. Rahman stands as a beacon of innovation in the music production industry. PALM Expo Magazine explores the making of the musical maestro's magnus opus in the recording landscape. read more

Articles September - October 2023

Naveen Deshpande Elevates Stand-Up Comedy with Bespoke Lighting Designs New!

Naveen Deshpande, a renowned lighting designer, made heads turn through his recent collaboration with India's leading stand-up comedian, Zakir Khan, during the latter's international tour. read more

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11 Questions with Aidan Williams ------- March April 2018 Issue!

Founder and Imaginator, Aidan Williams, fields 11 questions from Anil Chopra, Editor, PALM Technology, on Dante’s intrigue. The insight and in-depth revelations on networking in cyber space is future proof stuff.

1. Has Audinate absolved the audio signal from purgatory? Was it a moment of epiphany that allowed you to brand your networking software as Dante? To cut to the chase could you succinctly explain exactly which code Dante cracked?
Founder and Imaginator, Aidan Williams

Audio signals are trapped inside analogue cables today – they need to be freed! Dante allows audio signals to roam freely across the wide expanses of data networks installed by our IT cousins.

The technical innovation behind Dante comes in a few parts. Firstly, we developed techniques for sending audio through standard IT networks with such low delay and tight synchronization that it is indistinguishable from running an analogue wire between the devices. Secondly, we developed plug and play and self-configuration techniques that made Dante really easy to use. We knew that the networking needed to be bulletproof and easy to use for AV professionals who don’t spend their lives in IT environments. Finally, we package up our solutions into a toolbox of solutions (cards, chips, modules, software) that are really easy for manufacturers and integrators to use.

2. Ethernet data transfer rates have increased from the original 2.94 megabits per second (Mbit/s)[3] to the latest 400 gigabits per second (Gbit/s). Can we ascribe all the miraculous Dante features to this fantastic leap in Data transfer?

Some, but by no means al. It is certainly the case that increasing Ethernet speed enables higher performance media networking – both audio and video. For example, a single gigabit Ethernet cable can support over 512 audio channels. However, higher speed networks do not solve the problems we were addressing when we developed Dante (see above).

3. Are there some magical alloys in the hardware that account for the incredible specs Audinate offers?

In some cases, yes. The highest performance Dante solutions use programmable hardware chips called Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) to provide wire speed packet processing for hundreds of audio channels with only a few hundred microseconds of latency and microsecond synchronization. In the case of PC and Mac software, we relax those performance requirements quite a bit!

4. Is optical fibre necessary to exploit Dante hardware and software features to their optimum?

Certainly not – many people use CAT5/6/7 Ethernet cabling very successfully with Dante. A bonus of using copper cabling is that power can also be supplied to the device with the network cable using Power over Ethernet (PoE).

5.Did the design revelation occur at Motorola or NICTA? Or your work on real-time transfer protocol (RTP) on zero configuration networking while at IETF? Can you tell us how these various organisations contributed to the concept of Dante?

When I was at Motorola Labs, I was working in the IETF on zero configuration networking – the plug and play networking technology now seen in many products (e.g. Apples Bonjour). I was also working in other areas – IPv6 networking and reliable multicast. The Dante project however, began at NICTA (now part of the Australian CSIRO research lab). The work we did at NICTA was entirely new, particularly around the synchronization and low delay aspects to ensure the required level of performance. It was very helpful to have a background in Internet Protocols and standardization, so one could consider Motorola contributed to Dante by training us well!

6. Are you at heart an engineer hell (pun intended) bent on becoming rich on the revelation or are you really a philosopher poet?

More along the philosopher poet line I think.. 😉 I’m more motivated by the possibility of transforming the AV industry rather than by money. There really is a much better way to build AV systems than using piles of boxes and analogue cables! If we get it right, the money will take care of itself and along the way we will build a good company that employs many people.

7. You seemed to have conquered all the brands, who seem happy to be in your stables! Can you give us a downside on this (if any)? or better from the horse’s mouth which is the best competition to Dante?

Right now, the competition is really analogue cabling. Many integrators still design systems they way they have done for many years – with analogue cables. Fortunately, when they try Dante for the first time, they discover that Dante makes the networking part easy, but we still need to convince them to make that first step.

8. It would be nice if you could recount some unique audio networking solutions Dante configured?

This one is fun: They have lots of different types of equipment all hooked together with Dante. You’d have to be careful when upgrading the equipment in the lion enclosure!

9. Would you say Dante is “extremely affordable” or “rather expensive”?

This often depends on the system. In many installations Dante greatly reduces cabling and installation costs – because the network is already there or because only a single set of cabling is needed. At Audinate, we continue to work on reducing the cost of Dante networking. I look forward to the day when AV products are no longer burdened by the cost of all those analogue connectors and converter chips – those things are expensive! Check out our new AVIO products – these are very cost effective products for adding Dante to existing systems.

10. At what level do you think the Indian market is? Is broadband speed in India still a hurdle or are other areas still backward?

I’m not intimately familiar with the AV market in India, however India has a strong reputation for IT knowledge, so I would expect technologies like Dante to be readily accepted and used in the Indian market. Broadband speed is not a big concern, because mostly people want to send audio signals around inside a building or a campus using fairly high speed local networks. High speed broadband would really only be necessary for sending audio between geographically distant sites.

11. What is your vision for Audinate going forward?

At Audinate, we really want to enable the use of IT technology in AV systems. Networking is an enabler and has the potentially to totally change the way that people design and deploy AV systems for the better. Widespread use of networking enables people to do more with less but still improve the quality of AV solutions.


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