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Stacking Audio Matrices


time2jet
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Fellas,

Any reason why one couldn’t stack two or more 8-Zone audio matrices for a 14+ zone system?  The precise matrices being considered are the episode response series or the triad AMS-8 with amps.  I’ve done this before, I just can’t remember how the drivers see it.  Can I grab any source form either matrix and play to any zone.  Can zones from different matrices be grouped?  I don’t have equipment in stock to test. Thanks guys. 

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2 hours ago, time2jet said:

Any reason why one couldn’t stack two or more 8-Zone audio matrices for a 14+ zone system?

Apart from some odd lingering stacked matrix issues in C4 - why would you? Wouldn't even REALLY work for  14 zones anyway, or you're SEVERELY limiting your sources Savings even on just getting a 24x24 Triad which is pricey don't justify the issues you're creating. To do it right to get an 8x16 audio matrix stack, you'd actually pay more (it would take 3 8x8 matrices)

 

2 hours ago, time2jet said:

episode response series

These are matrix amps, not audio matrices

 

Are you looking to have 8 or less sources, but 14 zones? Then you COULD use the response series amps and use their audio out loops to create essentially an 8x16 amp.

Realize that if you use a 16 and a 12 to make 14 zones you can, but are limited to 6 sources on the 12.

 

Yes to other questions.

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8 minutes ago, Cyknight said:

Apart from some odd lingering stacked matrix issues in C4 - why would you? Wouldn't even REALLY work for  14 zones anyway, or you're SEVERELY limiting your sources Savings even on just getting a 24x24 Triad which is pricey don't justify the issues you're creating. To do it right to get an 8x16 audio matrix stack, you'd actually pay more (it would take 3 8x8 matrices)

 

These are matrix amps, not audio matrices

 

Are you looking to have 8 or less sources, but 14 zones? Then you COULD use the response series amps and use their audio out loops to create essentially an 8x16 amp.

Realize that if you use a 16 and a 12 to make 14 zones you can, but are limited to 6 sources on the 12.

 

Yes to other questions.

Thanks for responding @cyknight  

I’m aware that the response series are matrix amps, as I now run a 16ch myself.  

This particular application is simply a mountain lodge with 4 bedrooms with ensuites.  Each bedroom and ensuite needs to be independent of each other (in terms of control versus simply source ie - someone is watching television in the bedroom while another is listening to streaming audio in the ensuite).  In addition there are 6 additional independent zones that audio streams could potentially play.  So in total there are 10 zones needing 2ch streaming audio.  The sources are all C4 native audio from an EA5.  4 independent streaming sources is the maximum desired.  All zones have passive in ceilings (6 include in-wall subs).

For this, and for the reasons below, I was considering integrating a 16 Channel and a 12 Channel Response looped.  The owner is convinced that running identical In-ceilings, the the Episode Response seems to sound better than the Triad 8x8 matrix with separate Triad amps (that she runs in her own residence). We’ve changed settings and focused particular sources to zones, but still can’t change her mind.  I have to admit that I haven’t lived with Triad, but am very happy with the Episode personally.  

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3 minutes ago, time2jet said:

The owner is convinced that running identical In-ceilings, the the Episode Response seems to sound better than the Triad 8x8 matrix with separate Triad amps

Uhhhh well truth is in the EAR of the beholder I guess.

 

That said, I've nothing against the Episode as such - indeed run one myself.

4 bedrooms plus 4 ensuites plus 6 others is 14 - and with the '10 zones need streaming audio' I assume that means 4 zones have TVs and you're wiring the TV back for audio to speakers?

In that scenario, with the sub outputs on the Episode, they do make for a fine and reasonably priced choice.

HOWEVER note that due to pathing/tracking issues you SHOULD NOT loop out controller outputs (a looped out is still a 'split' output). So either you'll need more audio outputs, or divide them 2 and 2 (or whatever works) and limit how many streams are available 'per amp'

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  • 1 month later...
5 hours ago, Matt Lowe said:

any reason to not have the 24 zone triad matrix and have the amplifiers each connected to it? this will simplify your connections and allow any sources to be accessible anywhere.

Little late to the conversation, but the assumption is cost plus not needing 24 sources.

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  • 1 month later...
On 5/6/2021 at 8:10 PM, Mike R said:

Are there any single unit options that are greater than a 24 zone matrix - I need 39 zones for a project and full audio flexibility.

I have the same question.  I think I will end up with >36 audio zones and plan to get two 24x24 boxes.  In terms of inputs, about 15 of them will be audio-return from TVs.   I had assumed that "universal" sources (available to any zone) would require Y-cables to split sources and use up a source input on EACH Matrix, and then I would have sources that could only play on the zones coming out of one matrix (like maybe TVs on upper level can only play on upstairs speakers).

Then I got to thinking--- is C4 smart enough to let me dedicate a few inputs/outputs to intelligently shift sources around?  I mean, it's a matrix switch (or, rather, two of them)!    So like use 20 source inputs on each matrix (40 total sources) and reserve four sources and four zones on each for double-switching of a source on Matrix 1 to a "virtual zone output" that goes into a source on Matrix 2 and then switched again to the desired zone off of Matrix 2.   Assuming no more that 4 (or however many you choose to wire like this) "Cross Matrix" source-zone pairs at any time, I should be golden, right?  Basically a virtual 40x40 matrix.

I was thinking of using the same approach to bring access to all 30+ main house zones to a guest house 200' away (with a local 8X8 matrix over there) without having to pull a long wire for each channel.

Is this kind of thing a native capability of C4 audio routing logic?  Am I thinking about this right?

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1 hour ago, cnicholson said:

I should be golden, right?  Basically a virtual 40x40 matrix

You'll be creating a pathing blackhole that way.

1 hour ago, cnicholson said:

Am I thinking about this right?

So no.

 

And of course there are bigger audio matrices:

https://www.zektor.com/p/5/proaudio-3248

Same really, as they now own Zektor:

https://www.pulse-eight.com/p/212/proaudio-32

 

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30 minutes ago, Cyknight said:

You'll be creating a pathing blackhole that way.

So no.

Bummer.  Not saying I'm NOT wrong, but can you help me understand why my logic is bad?   Suppose I have 40 inputs and 40 zones, and two 24x24 Matrix switches (call them A and B).   On each Matrix, inputs 1-20 are unique and used for actual source input (40 total, 1A-20A and 1B-20B).   On Matrix A, line-level outputs 21A-24A are plugged into inputs 21B-24B (and outputs 21B-24B are plugged into inputs 21A-24A).

Suppose I want to listen to Source 1A on Zone 2B.   Of course Source 1A is not (directly) plugged into Matrix B.  But, with the right programming, why couldn't the obvious solution be implemented: Tell Matrix A to "play" Source 1A in Zone 21A (which is plugged in Source 21B), then tell Matrix B to play Source 21B in Zone 2B?   

The logic would be: if you are asked to play a Source that is NOT plugged into the Matrix into which the desired physical zone is wired, see if there are any zones in the 21-24 range that are NOT playing anything.   Grab one of those and route to it and then tell the other Matrix what to do.  If all four are playing, the request fails.  As long as C4 is aware of the state of all of this at all times, what I proposed seems doable, no?

 

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Oh the system will do all that by itself no additional programming required - but the issue will be that you're cascading switches with limited inputs, so things will start doing rather unexpected things on matrix b once you start switching sources in active zones on matrix b. And no you won't get a solid logic programming in place to prevent that that isn't ridiculously convoluted and liable to cause as many issues as it solves.

Don't try and 'make things work' when realistically you can just do it properly for no major cost addition - one Pulse Eight/Zektor Pro32 isn't going to set you back on the cost of two triad 24's. I don't have the prices in front of me but it may well be even less.

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