SSL C200 Channel Functionality

May 1, 2003 12:00 PM, Rob Alexander


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Banks of channels can be 'moved' around the console to gain access to individual functionality at the flick of a switch, much as you would expect. However, in other, earlier digital consoles, keeping track of which banks of channels had been accessed was in my opinion part of the reason that familiarity with the control surface seemed to have been sacrificed for the sake of funky technology.

Parameter Parameters…

Above each bin of eight faders, the additional large flat-screen display shows the parameter detail for the specific channel bank, and to which the faders below relate. I know it sounds very straight forward, but it can be a simple thing like an instant view of a channel number in front of you that can make the difference between a sale to an engineer used to an analog console, and one perhaps not yet prepared to challenge the digital future.

Restrictions can be made to individual parameters in three states. ‘Protected’ is read only, but write protected, ‘manual’ is disconnected from the automation system completely, and ‘fully automated’ allows any parameter changes to be written and later edited through the automation interface.

Broadcast Control...

For broadcast or more conventional recording requirements, the large central section comes into its own. Any I/O devices can be controlled using either direct access buttons, dedicated to the functionality of the device as determined by the C200s software, or through a pen/tablet/mouse combination or a hidden infra-red keyboard located at the front of the master control section.

Wrapping it up…

Flexibility is one of those words that manufacturers love to band around, and often as not, flexible is a term constrained by their needs, usually cost-driven, and not yours. However, flexibility might just be about to take on a new meaning at SSL.

I know that we live in world where products are expected to comply with dozens of needs, potentially hundreds of uses, and perhaps a whole host of existing as well as yet-to-be-determined media applications. Most products sadly don’t live up to their billing, and just because a manufacturer gets all exited about its “new baby,” doesn’t mean that the audio engineers who have to use it, will be equally enthralled. This SSL, however, is the exception to that rule.

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