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simple setup to have 2 audio outputs from different channels

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simple setup to have 2 audio outputs from different channels

Postby chueh » Wed Jul 22, 2015 4:19 pm

I need to perform the piano live with the orchestral part which is created from a DAW but played by Aria Player. Since from time to time, the orchestral part is silent, while I am performing the solo, I need to keep the timing accurately in order to sync with the orchestral part measure-wise. I need a set of headphones for myself while performing to hear the modified metronome clicks and some notes for reminders, while the audience can only hear the orchestral part by Aria Player from the speakers. It's the same song but with variations in different channels for outputs. I need to separate the channels for the headphones from the speakers.

I just don't have the hardware setup yet. I am using a brand new MacBook 12", so it only equipped with ONE audio output. Thus, I need to create another audio output. I know perhaps I could use a simple USB soundcard to add another output???? Or are there other better simple ways to do this. Please shed your light with me. Thanks
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Re: simple setup to have 2 audio outputs from different chan

Postby Credo » Thu Jul 23, 2015 1:11 am

If you only need two outputs, and a mono mix is good enough, then you could split the stereo output built into your Mac with a Y cable and PAN the desired instruments to one side or the other. This isn't the ideal method, but it would work in a pinch.
Just as an example: ... no+y+cable

Of course you can shop around to find different types and sizes of plugs and converters to meet your needs, but the idea is splitting a single stereo output into two mono outputs. Also, don't be surprised if you only get sound out of one side of your headphones if you do something like this.

The general idea there one side to the church PA system. Pan the instruments that you want live to that side. Run the other side to your monitor(s) or earphones, and pan those instruments there. If you have some instruments that you want to come through BOTH sides, then pan them more towards the center.

There are also inexpensive options like this one (should work ok, not sure about the latency on these for live performing) : ... +interface

Another option (probably with lousy latency, no ASIO, but it might work) might be through the HDMI connection on your Mac (if it has one). In that case, you'd need an HDMI to analogue converter. I'm not sure if Mac OS will let you stream to more than one interface at once (with Windows we use something called ASIO4ALL to do this)...but if it does you might could get another pair of outputs through HDMI. Here's an example of a cheap one that mixes it down to one stereo output: ... ter+for+tv and here's one that just takes HDMI audio 6.1 surround sound, but converts it to analogue for you: ... ound+sound (this could theoretically give you up to 6 outputs).

If you want stereo mixes, plenty of quality outputs, and lower latency...go ahead and get yourself a decent pro audio interface. You'll find it sounds better, will be far more reliable, and much more flexible.

Amazon has a crazy good deal on the Tascam 1200 right now (For Prime members it's $118.00, so if you or anyone you know can take's a great deal): ... ascam+1200

Note, that model only has 2 main outputs, plus a headphone monitor connection (and I'd really recommend 4 or more outputs for your live performing/monitoring needs, but it could be considerably more around and see what you can find), but that's still a very good value on that particular device. If you primarily go with MONO mixes in your church, then the two main outputs might give you enough for the money (and you can still monitor everything with the headphone jack). What makes it such a great deal, is you get 6 inputs, 4 XLR preamps that support phantom power, better than average DA/ADc from 44.1 - 96k, etc, and it's in a price range with many of the 2in 2out boxes on the market right now.

Here's a list I got just typing 4in a sort of launching pad to explore what sort of interfaces are out there. ... Caps%2C193

I'm tempted to snatch one of those 1200 models up as a spare to use while I recap my old Delta 1010 units.
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Re: simple setup to have 2 audio outputs from different chan

Postby SysExJohn » Fri Jul 24, 2015 3:08 am

My own solution to this problem was, using a laptop, to acquire an E-MU 1616m with the cardbus interface. That gives 6 channels of output. 1 and 2 are coupled to the phones but the other 4 are used to feed the PA via a mixer.

However, you have to have a laptop that has a cardbus interface and they are none too common these days. My solution to this was to buy three used Lenovo Thinkpad X61 laptops with Windows XP (2 as spares), just for performance. They aren't connected to the internet, so there's no worry about hackers or infection.

I now have 2 E-MU cardbus interfaces, the second as a spare, both bought at half price or less from eBay still in their boxes.

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