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Old 04-21-2021, 02:02 AM   #1
Theremin
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Default Trouble routing from ambisonics decoder (AIIRA) track to master or hardware

Hi all, so this is going to take a bit to explain

First of all, my target is to take a webpage playing a multichannel ambisonics file (currently a 1st order b-format) into a speaker array (16 speakers). This needs to happen on a Win10 machine running a Dante Virtual SoundCard as output device.

So, current state is:

Web browser playing b-format file

ASIOlinkPro virtual audio device configured as 8 channel (7.1)

On ASIOlinkPro I'm routing the 4 b-format channels to Dante RX 1-4

On reaper, I have a track (outside folders) that is armed and getting DanteRX1-4 as inputs, track is 16 channels

On that track I have as inputFX the AIIRADecoder + Energy Visualizer, I can visualize the energy, and on the track's VUmeters I can see that it goes from 4 channels to 16 when I enable the AIIRADecoder. So the most frustating thing is that I can see the VUmeters for the decoded signal (which I though it was going to be the hard part) but I'm unable to send them to the speakers.

So once here I would like either:

-Route the 16 channels to the master track (48 channels) so that they can be sent to hardware (Master track is sending to DanteTX 1-48)

-Send to hardware (DanteTX 1-16) which is sent to the amplifier connected to the speakers

Problem is neither of this is working. If I route to master track, master track does not receive a thing, if I send to hardware, I don't get signal on Dante Controller and of course not on the speakers.

I also tried to get the AIIRADecoder on the FX (not FXin) of a track and then sending to another track. But still get nothing.

I'm routing other tracks with no AIIRADecoder just fine, and some other tracks are sending to hardware channels, also just fine, that is why I'm so confused and suspicious of the AIIRADecoder plugin

Any help on what to try is greatly appreciated

PS: I'm using Reaper like a live console, I'm not recording nor playing audio from the tracks

Edit: SOLVED!!!
So there was no problem at all with the plugin or anything. It is just that I'm quite new to reaper and didn't realized that I had the monitoring turned off! So yeah, AIIRADecoder can live-decode a b-format input instead of reading it from waves on a track.

All questions welcome!

Last edited by Theremin; 04-27-2021 at 06:46 AM. Reason: SOLVED!
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Old 04-21-2021, 03:57 AM   #2
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This sounds to me like a configuration issue with the decoder. Do you have a virtual speaker (not in front of my PC right now so can't recall exact term) configured as the anchor point in the decoder?
Daniel from IEM is an active member here too so perhaps he might see this and chime in.
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Old 04-21-2021, 03:57 AM   #3
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Oh, and welcome aboard.
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Old 04-21-2021, 07:06 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dannii View Post
This sounds to me like a configuration issue with the decoder. Do you have a virtual speaker (not in front of my PC right now so can't recall exact term) configured as the anchor point in the decoder?
Daniel from IEM is an active member here too so perhaps he might see this and chime in.
Hi Dannii, thanks for your reply.

I think you mean an "imaginary speaker" on the decoder maybe? What I'm missing here is what an "anchor point" is other than in envelopes. Did a search but I still don't know what you mean by "anchor point" sorry
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Old 04-21-2021, 08:07 PM   #5
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Why not try a decoder from ATK (ambisonic toolkit) since the signal is 1st order. It has converters to and from ambix if that is how your website is broadcasting. That way you can determine whether it's the IEM AllRAD that's gumming up the works or not. The ATK stuff should have a decoder that will serve up something half-way sensible to your array I hope.

I've played around the AllRAD a bit and also haven't been able to wrap my head around the whole plugin layout/JSON preset system. I'm not that clever when it comes to those higher order maths though.
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Old 04-22-2021, 05:18 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Theremin View Post
Hi Dannii, thanks for your reply.

I think you mean an "imaginary speaker" on the decoder maybe? What I'm missing here is what an "anchor point" is other than in envelopes. Did a search but I still don't know what you mean by "anchor point" sorry
Yeah, imaginary speaker is the term I meant. It basically acts as a reference point for all the other real speakers. You need to have an imaginary one there first and then you build your array around that in the plugin. That's what I meant by anchor point. The other speakers are "anchored" to the imaginary one.
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Old 04-22-2021, 09:42 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dannii View Post
Yeah, imaginary speaker is the term I meant. It basically acts as a reference point for all the other real speakers. You need to have an imaginary one there first and then you build your array around that in the plugin. That's what I meant by anchor point. The other speakers are "anchored" to the imaginary one.
No, that's not right.

The AllRAD is decoding for a sphere. So if you're decoding to a 2D array, like 5.1, you need imaginary loudspeakers to make the sphere decoding possible. For example, for 5.1, you can add an imaginary loudspeaker at 0° azimuth and 90° elevation and a 2nd imaginary loudspeaker at 0° azimuth and -90°. That makes the decoding on a sphere possible, even though part of that sphere is "virtual".
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Old 04-22-2021, 09:45 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by plush2 View Post
I've played around the AllRAD a bit and also haven't been able to wrap my head around the whole plugin layout/JSON preset system. I'm not that clever when it comes to those higher order maths though.
I'm surprised by that. I think that IEM AllRADecoder is the easiest decoder to setup. What aspects do you find confusing?
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Old 04-22-2021, 02:35 PM   #9
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I'm surprised by that. I think that IEM AllRADecoder is the easiest decoder to setup. What aspects do you find confusing?
Thanks for the challenge. I took another look at it and I think the virtual speaker part (I have a planar setup) and the errors made me give up too soon. It is easy once you actually read what the error messages are saying and get the decode array to calculate.
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Old 04-22-2021, 07:24 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by plush2 View Post
Thanks for the challenge. I took another look at it and I think the virtual speaker part (I have a planar setup) and the errors made me give up too soon. It is easy once you actually read what the error messages are saying and get the decode array to calculate.
Good! I'm glad you got it working. The AllRAD method is a very clever approach to the complex math involved in HOA decoding.
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Old 04-26-2021, 07:34 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plush2 View Post
Why not try a decoder from ATK (ambisonic toolkit) since the signal is 1st order. It has converters to and from ambix if that is how your website is broadcasting. That way you can determine whether it's the IEM AllRAD that's gumming up the works or not. The ATK stuff should have a decoder that will serve up something half-way sensible to your array I hope.

I've played around the AIIRAD a bit and also haven't been able to wrap my head around the whole plugin layout/JSON preset system. I'm not that clever when it comes to those higher order maths though.

I'll definitely try the ATK, didn't tried before as it seem to have a limited amount of multichannel encoders and Periphonic is not yet implemented. Will try just in case.

I have tried with the Sparta plugin from Aalto University, but the hevavior is just the same as with the AIIRA.

I'm thinking that I'm making a routing mistake or something like that.

Has anyone used AIIRAD/ATK/SPARTA plugins with live inputs and not from files on the tracks?

Thanks!
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