Knowledgebase: SQ Series
Virtual Sound Check using the USB-B connection
Posted by Nicole Higgins, Last modified by Keith Johnson on 22 May 2020 08:07 AM

What is a Virtual Soundcheck?

A virtual soundcheck is when you use a previous recording of the band/artist that you are going to be engineering the gig for.
This allows you to soundcheck for the acoustics/set-up of each venue without the band being required on stage.
Doing a virtual soundcheck allows you to adjust the levels and parameters required ready for the live show with the band.

Virtual sound checking on the SQ can be done with any DAW that supports the ASIO (on Windows) or Core Audio (on Mac) connection, including:

  • Pro Tools
  • Logic X *MacOS only
  • Reaper
  • Cubase
  • Ableton
  • Tracks Live (up to Mac OS Catalina)

When using a DAW on Mac OS, you won’t need to use an Audio Driver as the SQ is Core Audio Driver compliant. If after doing your virtual soundcheck, you want to run any OS sound such as iTunes or Spotify as venue playback for example, you may need to adjust your audio Mac OS settings so that the SQ is set as the output audio device.

Whilst using a Windows PC, you will need to download the ASIO/WDM Driver. You can download this here: https://www.allen-heath.com/key-series/sq/sq-software

If you have imported multitrack stems into a DAW such as Logic X, you may find that you need to change the output routing of the DAW, as by default, most DAWs' have all the inputs routed to the master LR track.
You will need to change the output device of the DAW to be the SQ in the DAW Preferences and enable access to all 32 USB output channels (this only applies in some cases).
Then for each channel, remove any sends to the DAW master LR track, and instead send each track to individual USB output channels.

We recommend that these are patched 1-to-1, to avoid confusion. e.g. send track 1 to USB output 1, track 2 to USB 2 etc...

 

Then, on the I/O Page of the SQ, you need to assign the USB-B inputs to the individual input channels.

It is useful to store the input patching for both live and virtual soundcheck setups using the Input Channel Patch Library.

Live = Channels are sourced from the local or stage inputs.

Virtual Soundcheck = Channels are sourced from USB for playback

This will enable you to switch between the two patches quickly, and without altering any processing or mixing you have adjusted.

 

With channels sourced from USB-B, you will receive audio signal from the DAW to the input channels of the SQ.

You can then play back the recording and make adjustments to the mix, before switching back to your 'live' patch for the show.

Other methods of virtual sound checking with the SQ are using SQ-Drive, Waves or Dante.