AutoMix rides gain. So you don’t have to.
Anyone who’s ever mixed a program with multiple guests and mics has probably wished they had more hands. That’s why Lawo invented AutoMix, the hands-free, DSP-based automatic mixing system that frees board operators to tend to the whole show — not just the console faders.
AutoMix is simple to use: just four steps are needed. (The diagram shows our RƎLAY VRX8 virtual mixer software; Lawo Ruby and Sapphire consoles provide similar onscreen controls.) After sources are added to the AutoMix bus, the intelligent algorithm takes over, invisibly riding gain on the selected sources. Each source can be weighted, too – give Host mics higher priority, while Guest mics, phone or Skype callers, or remote guests get a lower priority, so that they’re automatically ducked when the Host speaks.
How does AutoMix sound?
Pretty great, as you’ll hear in the samples below. AutoMix is very smooth and virtually unnoticeable, without the upcutting or lag found in other automatic mixing schemes. In addition to riding gain on multiple mics, AutoMix has other benefits – such as a noticeable reduction of ambient studio noise during multi-mic segments.
Listen to this clip (courtesy of WESA-FM’s “The Confluence” roundtable), recorded without AutoMix. You can hear the “room noise” – echo, slap and hiss – amplified by multiple open mic channels. Also note how the individual guests step on each other when they speak, which can reduce listeners’ speech comprehension. Even the best board operator will be hard-pressed to quickly ride gain and solve this issue when three or more mic channels are active.
Now listen to to a clip of the same audio, recorded from a mixing bus with AutoMix. The room noise is gone, thanks to AutoMix’s attenuation of inactive mic channels. But not a word is missed once the guests on those channels begin to speak. AutoMix mixes them at prescribed levels. Also notice how, when multiple people are speaking, the Host’s mic gets priority, while Guest mics are leveled out and overly-enthusiastic speakers’ volume is brought down.
Some other console companies have an automatic mixing function, but Lawo’s implementation of AutoMix is unique — it works with Stereo signals, where most, if not all, other automatic mixing schemes are limited to Mono signals only. This opens up a whole new world of flexibility; a kind of “ducking 2.0”, where talent on multiple mics can talk over the same music bed or jingle. There’s no limit on source type – AutoMix works with voices, music or any other audio, and you can dynamically add and remove sources from the AutoMix at will. Even use AutoMix with delivery systems to keep levels consistent between playout channels.
How can AutoMix streamline your studio workflow?