Studio Technologies Develops Interface Between Analog And Dante Networking Protocol

Studio Technologies has introduced a simple yet high-performance method of interfacing analog signals with applications that utilize Dante audio-over-Ethernet (IP) media networking technology.

The new Model 5330 “Flex-Use” Dante Audio Interface offers four line-level analog sources that can be connected to the unit and then, after conversion to digital, output by way of four output (transmitter) channels associated with the Dante interface. Four signals that arrive by way of Dante can be converted to analog and then output as balanced line-level signals. A 2-channel/stereo monitor section allows the input and output signals to be selectively observed using meters, a headphone output, and line-level outputs.

Gordon Kapes, president of Studio Technologies, said that many applications can benefit from having a general-purpose analog input, analog output, and monitoring unit.

“With the Model 5330 there’s now a product that will efficiently link the legacy analog world with Dante,” he said. “We felt that the term ‘flex-use’ was an apt description for the Model 5330’s unique set of flexible resources. Each function was carefully implemented, providing users with a simple set of controls that will help them maintain maximum audio performance.”

Four inputs—two on the front panel and two on the back—allow interfacing with a variety of unbalanced and balanced line-level analog sources.

Four inputs—two on the front panel and two on the back—allow interfacing with a variety of unbalanced and balanced line-level analog sources.

Four inputs, two on the front panel and two on the back, allow interfacing with a variety of unbalanced and balanced line-level analog sources. The 2-channel/stereo input on the front panel is optimized for use with portable electronics that provide “–10” unbalanced audio sources. Using a rotary control, users can adjust the sensitivity of the input circuitry to match the source level. The back-panel inputs are differential (balanced) with a nominal level of +4 dBu and plenty of signal-handling headroom. The four input signals are converted to 24-bit digital audio and then transported via the Dante interface.

Four digital audio channels enter the Model 5330 via Dante and are converted to analog. Four 3-pin male XLR connectors, located on the unit’s back panel, provide balanced “+4” line-level analog outputs. An auxiliary output provides a fifth “pro-quality” output. Push-button switches allow the user to select the source for the auxiliary output from among the four Dante input/receiver channels.

The monitor section of the unit allows the user to select any audio input or output signal for visual and aural observation. Two 8-segment LED meters, calibrated in dBFS, allow precise monitoring of signal levels as they exist in the digital domain. A 2-channel/stereo headphone output allows connection of headphones or ear buds that use 3.5 mm or ¼-inch jacks. A separate line-level analog monitor output allows connection to inputs on amplified speakers or power amplifiers. Two rotary controls allow individual adjustment of the headphone and monitor outputs.

The Model 5330 is compatible with AES67 and Dante Domain Manager (DDM), and supports 24-bit digital audio signals with sample rates of 44.1 and 48 kHz. The unit is “universal” mains powered, requiring 100 to 240 volts, 50/60 Hz for operation. Standard connectors are used for interfacing with the audio input and output channels, Ethernet interface, and AC mains input. The unit weighs less than four pounds and mounts in one space (1U) of a standard 19-inch rack enclosure.

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