I am now able to offer my clients one of the newer technologies in recording digital audio in real time, now over the internet, Source Connect by Source- Elements
Source Connect is now on my menu of available studio services and equipment including Telos Zephyr ISDN codec, Neumann TLM 193 microphone, dbx 286a mic preamp, Behringer Xenyx 1204 mixer , ProTools LE with M-box, all being the “meat and potatoes” aspect for recording digital audio, with the “icing” being my isolation sound booth, which produces very clean, broadcast-quality audio.
I’ve had my ISDN studio set up for a about three years now because I had enough demand from my clients to justify the investment. It seemed at the time that copper wires were the best and only truly reliable way to record and transmit a broadcast quality audio signal with someone else in another location in real time. The codec is purchased new for $3500 on up, plus the monthly cost of the telephone lines, currently running about $45.00/month.
Ever since Source Connect was released initially as a ProTools plug-in in March, 2005, allowing users the capability of recording over the internet, it was only a matter of time until the technology impproved and the low cost of entry (one time charge of $395, and no monthly subscription for phone lines and minute by minute charges) prompted more and more requests in the recent months from clients for me to provide it.
Of course, there are plenty of opinions about how ISDN, even though still considered the standard, may be shortly (within 5 years?)going the way of the dinosaur, in lieu of Source Connect or the hybrid AudioTX. Even so, Source Connect can be bridged to an ISDN connection, and I suspect to the hybrid as well. This leads me to believe there are even more solutions in development we are yet to see. Technology is definitely a beautiful thing.
Source Connect is not exclusive to Digidesign (ProTools) users, but usable with just about any audio recording software supporting VST plug-ins. The only other purchase associated with Source Connect was thatI had to make was the iLok ; ($40.00), a proprietary USB hardware dongle that holds licenses for the software.
For anyone considering getting Source Connect, I’d highly suggest the following:
Be sure to check your internet speed compatibility on the upload and download to make sure your ISP is providing the service required. The minimum bandwith for upload and download speed is 300. Check out http://speedtest.net/ or http://www.speakeasy.net/speedtest/ . Hopefully you won’t need to upgrade your service. Luckily I didn’t have to.
The other thing I would also suggest is that you don’t try to do the installation yourself. The software includes installation and takes about an hour or more. My tech was named Rebekah . She was in New Zealand, and she knew her stuff, and the process is highly technical.
Once we were “connected” and talking back and forth from my studio to somewhere in Zew Zealand that sounded as clear as any ISDN connection in the final moments during installation and configuring my firewall, a rush of glee and amazement came over me.
I know it took me a while to get “Connect”ed… but I am glad I did. A client at an agency in Sweden has inquired about a possible recording session using this application.