Knowledgebase: ME System
Recommended cables
Posted by Ben Morgan, Last modified by Nicola Beretta on 22 February 2017 08:46 AM

Allen & Heath can provide a range of pre-assembled, approved CAT and fibre cables. Please see here for more information.

Recommended Cables for A&H digital mixers

Different cables are used with our mixers depending on the control and audio interface options fitted. The choice of cable and connector type is important in ensuring it is suitably reliable and rugged for the application, does not degrade system performance and meets the associated EMC standards requirements. Cable type becomes critical for longer distances and touring applications.

The cable is the link between major components in the system and its importance should not be under estimated when specifying type and construction. The following notes provide a guide to recommended types:

CAT cables and connectors

Use STP (shielded twisted pair) CAT5e or higher cables. Those with both foil and braided screens provide shielding from interference and are generally more rugged. Although solid core types can perform better at longer distances stranded core cables are less prone to damage when kinked or repeatedly coiled. If you use a solid core type for touring check with the manufacturer that it is rated for the touring application.

For long distance cables and those that are repeatedly plugged we recommend you use the Neutrik EtherCon* connector which has a shell that protects the connections and locks it in place when plugged into the mating EtherCon socket provided on iLive. Protective dust caps are available for these connectors.

*Use only Neutrik NE8MC EtherCon or compatible connectors. The Neutrik NE8MC6 range is NOT mechanically compatible with the EtherCon socket on our products. For CAT6 termination use the NE8MX6 range instead.

All Network, ACE, gigaACE, DX and dSnake ports are 'auto-switching' so both straight and cross-over CAT5 cables can be used for these connections.

The following CAT5 cable types have been tested and approved by Allen & Heath to meet the required EMC standards:

Manufacturer Part no Cable type Comments
Lapp Kabel Etherline P flex 2170300 Stranded with a foil & braided screen Available in USA
Klotz RC5 RAMCAT5-flex Stranded with a braided screen  
Proplex PCCAT5EP Stranded with a foil & braided screen Available in USA
Klotz RC5SBSW Solid with a foil & braided screen  
Draka Etherflex Stranded with a foil & braided screen  

 

EtherSound

EtherSound is an industry standard audio networking system that is based on Ethernet technology.
The EtherSound option is available for iLive providing an alternative networked Surface to MixRack link, system expansion and recording.
The standard is maintained by Digigram who provide further information about the technology and supporting products on their website www.digigram.com and www.ethersound.com CAT5 cable is used.
Cable type is critical to performance at longer distances and not all types will work at the longer distances.

A list of cable types approved by Digigram for use with EtherSound is published on their website at  www.ethersound.com/technology/compatibility.php
The maximum distances of each type is noted. Some of these cables are approved to distances longer than 100 meters.

 

Dante

Dante is an Ethernet compliant audio networking solution created and developed by Audinate.
As most Dante devices support Gigabit Ethernet, CAT5e or CAT6 cables are recommended.
Please refer to www.audinate.com for further information.

 

Waves SoundGrid

SoundGrid is an Audio-over-Ethernet networking and processing technology developed by Waves.
CAT6 STP cables are recommended for Waves SoundGrid systems. Information on cable types and cable lengths is published here.

 

MADI

MADI is an industry standard multi channel digital audio interface documented by the Audio Engineering Society as AES10.
The MADI option is available for iLive providing a convenient interface for recording and integration with third party systems.
The iLive MADI option supports 64 channels of serial digital audio transmission over 75 ohm coaxial cable.

Typically two cables are required, one for each direction of audio. The MADI standard supports up to 50 meters (165 feet) but if audio is being transmitted from a third party device to an Allen & Heath MADI card with no audio being returned, or being transmitted both ways between two A&H cards, then the cable length may be extended.

An RME MADI card transmitting audio to an Allen & Heath MADI card can work up to 150 meters (500 feet). Longer lengths may be achieved but this requires the use of a mains filter for each device if the link is to remain error free during high voltage mains interference.

Note that it is important that good quality BNC connectors are used and that they are correctly crimped to the cable. For this reason it is best to buy ready made cables rather than attempt to make your own. Note also that you should avoid kinking these cables or coiling them with tight loops as this may cause damage.

Allen & Heath have tested and recommend Belden 1505A 75 ohm coaxial cable for use with MADI. Other cable that meets the specification of this cable may be used too.

 




 

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