Merging Technologies goes MAD
Merging Technologies goes MAD
Merging Technologies has developed an entirely new Merging Audio Device (MAD) for windows computers and the existing ASIO driver supplied with its interfaces was “beginning to show its age and lacked some key features”. MAD is said to offer significant improvements to the free version and also introduces a new additional Infrastructure package for broadcasters wanting the advanced features.
The first of the major enhancements is a multi-ASIO capability that allows different applications to run simultaneously sharing ASIO inputs and outputs. Additionally, internal bridging allows channels to be defined to send audio between applications concurrently using MAD.
While ASIO is the most popular driver option for the recording industry, Merging recognises that there are other markets where the official Microsoft WDM (Windows Driver Model) is essential and this has now been incorporated into MAD. The combination of ASIO and WDM gives flexibility by allowing WDM channels to be sent or mixed to the same outputs as ASIO or redirected to the bridge channels. This permits these channels to be routed or recorded by the ASIO applications, as well as allowing the user to monitor the WDM sources independently to those on the DAW or Mix, enabling the user to listen to their favourite DAW while comparing the track with playback from applications like Spotify or YouTube.
Recent developments in IP standards for the broadcast industry require a number of additional features to address stream redundancy and the migration towards centralised data centres. In addition to offering ST2022-7 Seamless Protection Switching, the MAD Infrastructure option also adds NMOS IS-04 and IS-05 compliance to the package, as well as the option of Virtual Machine operation.
Broadcasters are increasingly leveraging centralised production machines; an editing machine in the data centre can be allocated to any remote location worldwide, making sure a news picture editing machine, for example, is shared as much as possible and generates revenue 24/7. MAD connects the machine in ST2022-7 and can be discovered and controlled by an NMOS solution, regardless of whether the machines available in the data centre are physical or virtual. The new Anubis SPS provides the high-quality audio end point in the editing room which can be configured remotely and provides to the end user accurate monitoring calibration as well as recording facilities. Delving deeper into the capabilities of MAD, it is possible to have the ASIO and WDM applications at different sample rates as the WDM has its own Sampling Rate Converter which will automatically convert to the ASIO rate. This allows a recording to be compiled on the ASIO side with some files coming from a WDM source with a higher or lower rate.
Merging believes that the introduction of MAD gives existing native customers a radically enhanced set of workflows for no extra cost and that the addition of the low-cost Infrastructure option offers broadcasters cost-effective, controllable solutions to both the start and end points of any centralised IP network.