Topic: How to easily disable global muting?

Hi.

I need to disable the global muting, as it's very inconvenient to have things muted in all the mixes.

I have found a sort of workaround by selecting a mute group, and then editing that mute group, and leaving it in edit mode. This unfortunately seems to stop the solo function working though, means I can't use mute groups, and is a little unpredictable.

What am I missing here? I've checked the manual and preferences etc, but can't seem to find the option to disable global muting anywhere.

Cheers
Frank

2

Re: How to easily disable global muting?

I have no clue what you describe here, but the Master Mute button is in the upper right corner.

Regards
Matthias Carstens
RME

3 (edited by Ty Drwg 2021-11-12 21:54:56)

Re: How to easily disable global muting?

Hello.

Sorry, I will try to be more clear.

At the moment, if I mute an input channel in one mix in Totalmix, it becomes muted on all the other hardware output mixes as well.

So, if I mute the input channel 'ADAT Input 1', then it becomes muted for the outputs 'ADAT 1+2'. 'ADAT 3+4', ADAT '5+6'.

This is obviously undesirable, as if I have four headphone mixes and a control room monitor mix on separate hardware outputs, I need to be able to mute and solo in the control room mix without it affecting the headphone mixes.

I have found that if I enable the 'groups ' edit mode and leave it in the flashing editing mode, then mutes can only affect the current mix, without affecting the mixes for other hardware outputs. However, this means solo stops working, and I can't use mute groups, as it has to stay in edit mode.

Thanks
Frank

4

Re: How to easily disable global muting?

That workaround is how it is build and described in the manual:

The Mute groups operate – other than the global mute – exclusively for the current routing. This way you can not mute signals on all outputs unintentionally. Instead signals can be muted on specific submixes by the push of a button.

Muting at the input (at the very top of the signal chain) mutes the input signal itself. A different Mute functionality is not planned, sorry.

Regards
Matthias Carstens
RME

5 (edited by Ty Drwg 2021-11-13 14:00:28)

Re: How to easily disable global muting?

Muting at the input (at the very top of the signal chain) mutes the input signal itself.

Muting at the input (at the very top of the signal chain) mutes the input signal itself. A different Mute functionality is not planned, sorry.


But when in Mute group edit mode, it can only mute it in a single mix. So, it seems very easy to fix this bug?

As long as I keep switching between mute group and solo group edit mode, then it is possible to work around the bug, but this is quite inconvenient.

This can't be a hardware limitation, as it almost works properly. It must be possible to fix this in software.

I would be able to use the workaround for this bug if solo worked as well while editing mute groups, but unfortunately it requires clicking on the solo group edit mode before using solo.

Every other sound card with multiple mixes has mute and solo on individual mixes by default. This is a basic feature. So why do it any other way?

6 (edited by CrispyChips 2021-11-13 16:36:57)

Re: How to easily disable global muting?

Quote: “it seems very easy to fix this bug?”


With all due respect, this response appears to suggest a profound misapprehension.

That the architecture of the operational functionalities is a “bug”, an incorrect phrase, used repeatedly.

As Mr Carstens has already outlined, the routing software is specifically designed and built to work in precisely the manner he describes from the Manual. Therefore, not a “bug” per say.


Quote: “why do it any other way?”


Again, with respect, Mr Carstens has also already answered this question too.

“This way you cannot mute signals on all outputs unintentionally.” Some people use RME equipment in live recording situations, where such a mistake, might easily destroy an otherwise excellent recording.

People are human, in live recording situations they can easily become more susceptible than might normally be the case, to the inherent pressure and stresses often involved in such complex circumstances.

Put simply, they could press a single button and mess everything up completely.

Some politicians in stressful situations could have this difficulty.

That would be very bad for us indeed.


So.

Such systems are by design, conceived to be "failsafe".

Their architecture, by design, composited and constructed to prevent easily made errors, that could cause hugely embarrassing, unwanted problems.


Quote: “Every other sound card with multiple mixes has mute and solo on individual mixes by default.”


If I was a CEO at RME I would be writing to thank you for this point.

What a fantastic advert, revealing every other manufacturer as being found wanting. 

Their products less carefully thought out, easier to make a mistake with and ruin a recording with.

Hailing the immense superiority of RME’s excruciatingly detailed attention, in original design concept and implementation.


The salient issue to appreciate here, is that when a product is at the conceptual design stage, decisions have to be made regarding the majority of targeted consumers.

What their equipment requirements might be? How they are likely to approach their operation? How to provide users with the broadest possible choice of practical methodologies?

Yet anticipate how best to prevent such users, some of which are not technically experienced, from easily causing calamitous errors themselves, by simply pressing the wrong button, whilst under pressure?


You may think such issues could never happen to you.

Yet, if you will forgive a personal explanation, I had a recording for a Record Company, a Live Album, completely ruined once whilst I was Conducting at The Royal Albert Hall.

The Producer was experienced, appointed by the Record Company and the Recording Engineer, a highly experienced Tonmeister, (who ran a Recording Studio good enough for Paul McCartney to use), though the Tonmeister was not at fault. 

Happily the recording was made in Birmingham and the album achieved No 4 in its respective chart, and was there for many months. The Record Company wanted to follow it up a year later with another Live Album, but understandably, I refused.


People are human, mistakes happen things can go wrong.

Whilst we can’t foresee the unforeseeable, we can foresee the foreseeable.

The point about RME recording equipment is that by design, they are conceived to foresee the foreseeable, anticipate and prevent, foreseeable errors that could be easily made.

By the way, this “gift of anticipation” is the fundamental quality to look for in any good valet or butler. They know what is in ones very best interest, what one really needs, before one even realises what one needs oneself.

7 (edited by Ty Drwg 2021-11-14 00:57:48)

Re: How to easily disable global muting?

“This way you cannot mute signals on all outputs unintentionally.” Some people use RME equipment in live recording situations, where such a mistake, might easily destroy an otherwise excellent recording.

Surely the problem with the current muting method is that you can mute inputs unintentionally!

If mutes affect all mixes, then it is easy to unintentionally mute or unmute an input in another mix!

The system I am more used to protects you from this, as mutes always only affect a single mix, rather than all mixes.

This seems an easy change to make to the software, and would help me avoid destroying otherwise excellent recordings, as I could be sure that any changes to my control room mix will never affect the headphones or other feeds.

With the current system, mixes are not truly independent.

I have worked in broadcast and other areas, such as classical recordings, where mistakes can be embarrassing or costly. This is why I think a fail safe muting system where mutes are local is so important.

“Every other sound card with multiple mixes has mute and solo on individual mixes by default.”

What a fantastic advert, revealing every other manufacturer as being found wanting.

Their products less carefully thought out, easier to make a mistake with and ruin a recording with.

No, they do it because it makes sense for 95% of situations. There are reasons some methods are industry standards, and it's not fair to say is because everyone else is wrong.

Like today, I had a band in, and limited time, so while they were warming up, I needed to be checking the drum mics were working together, soloing mics that were not in the headphones etc, all while they were rehearsing. This was a real pain using the workaround method, as I had to keep disabling mute group editing, and enabling solo group editing every time I wanted to switch between mute and solo. And, if I got it out of sync, my mute would then become global and affect the band's monitor mixes as well.

I totally accept that I could be missing something important here, maybe I just don't get how this mixer is intended to be used, but currently, it's both making my life difficult, and is potentially dangerous, as a very loud signal or feedback loop could end up in the headphone or main monitor feeds.

8

Re: How to easily disable global muting?

> Like today, I had a band in, and limited time, so while they were warming up, I needed to be checking the drum mics were working together, soloing mics that were not in the headphones etc, all while they were rehearsing.

TM FX offers Solo, PFL, and Exclusive Solo/PFL. I would have used the PFL method to do what you did.

Regards
Matthias Carstens
RME

Re: How to easily disable global muting?

Quote: “the problem with the current muting method is that you can mute outputs unintentionally!”


The manual states “This way you cannot mute signals on all outputs unintentionally.”

So, the above statement contradicts a manual written by the manufacturers, experts regarding the operation of the product.

Compared to the average product manual produced by most manufacturers, the RME product manuals are veritable literary masterpieces. Bejewelled treasure mines of knowledge and helpful information.

Palpably, they are of little use unless they are carefully studied, understood, their guidance, adhered to. Quite simply, this apparent contradiction reveals a misapprehension of how to practically operate TotalMixFX, and I write that with complete and utter respect and the best wishes in the world.


Quote: “I have worked in broadcast and other areas, such as classical recordings.”

Quote: “The system I am more used to”


I’m wondering if that very fact is the largest part of the difficulty, you have clearly been frustrated by?

Working with consoles in broadcast situations, developing knowhow over time, naturally resulting in a personal, effective working methodology.

It is a common occurrence wherever unfamiliar products or new technologies are taken up by experienced individuals, that initial lack of adaptive flexibility, produces stumbling blocks and walls to be scaled.


There needs to be no embarrassment about this. It is an entirely normal state of affairs.

Imagine a legendary Formula 1 driver like Stirling Moss or Jim Clark facing the latest, technologically advanced Formula 1 car’s steering wheel.

A fresh learning curve altogether would be necessary, along with an eager willingness to flexibly adapt to a brand-new device, requiring an entirely new working methodology. (This even happens with Racing Tracks that are constantly evolving). We keep up, by constantly keeping up! So many stories involving development prototypes I could write about this.

With respect, my sense is it will be necessary to let go of well-established, effective routines you usually trust completely, whilst operating TotalMixFX. Altogether embracing and relying upon entirely new methods, of approaching certain, specific situations.

That, it’s simply a matter of adjusting to a presently unfamiliar product and embracing different methodologies wherever necessary.


Quote: “I think a fail safe muting system where mutes are local is so important.”

Quote: “The Mute groups operate – other than the global mute – exclusively for the current routing.”


The fact that mute groups operate exclusively for the current routing, makes them “local” to the routing selected.

It is “fail safe” if used as conceived, designed, produced and operated as instructed. That involves a small learning curve in how to operate it as intended, we all go through.


Quote: “they do it because it makes sense for 95% of situations.”


That was indeed, precisely my point.

Quod Erat Demonstrandum.


I think its worth contemplating that seemingly, unlike yourself, many users will not be particularly proficient technically from an engineering perspective.

Many people buy USB interfaces who are creatively, artistically or even musically inclined, so such products are designed, absolutely for professional use, but great attention has been given to making them work, as simply as possible.

In that respect TotalMixFX brilliantly solves that tremendous headache for the user deficient in engineering knowledge, routing! Anything can be routed anywhere, extremely easily, providing immense flexibility for the professional user and a simple method of implementing specific routing for the novice user. The more one uses it, the more one appreciates it to be truly a work of genius.


Quote: “it's not fair to say is because everyone else is wrong.”


Truthfully, I would never wish to be unfair.

That would be wholly against my personal ethical codes of life.

Scientific research has proven that even rats possess an inner code of moral ethics.

However, you raise an extremely interesting point. So, it’s worth contemplating that you "appear" to think it would be “fair” for RME to shoulder the further development cost and time involved in evolving a redesign of TotalMixFX.

Always assuming they had the resources to do so, which in all probability from everything I can tell and what Mr Carstens has stated, they obviously don’t. 

So that 5% of users (your figure, which seems grossly overestimated), can have a feature that 95% of users (your figure) have no interest in whatever.

Who will pay for the costs involved in that development, bringing higher prices for consumers, paying for unneeded features?

To my mind, that would not be fair! Most especially so, because such further development is not required.


Quote: “I totally accept that I could be missing something important here, maybe I just don't get how this mixer is intended to be used”


You have successfully summed up the situation extremely well.

The good news is that RME as manufacturers and the RME family of users are ready to help. It seems we all need such help.

I read every word of the Instruction manuals through completely. Watched all the tutorials but still needed to contact the distributor for advice a couple of times with questions.

The reason I follow this forum, is because there is always something further to learn, and the members here are extremely knowledgeable regarding RME products and genuinely want to be helpful to other users. They are altogether a wonderful bunch! Mr. Carstens in particular!

I sincerely wish you well, in all your further endeavours and recording opportunities.

Re: How to easily disable global muting?

MC wrote:

> Like today, I had a band in, and limited time, so while they were warming up, I needed to be checking the drum mics were working together, soloing mics that were not in the headphones etc, all while they were rehearsing.

TM FX offers Solo, PFL, and Exclusive Solo/PFL. I would have used the PFL method to do what you did.

It's not a great solution, as often it's much more convenient to work subtractive. I.e, if I want to lost the guide vox and click track from my mix, I just want to mute them, not to solo 25 other inputs. PFL wouldn't work here, as it would lose the balance mix in my monitor mix. Building submixes on the solos is kinda bad practice anyway, as you can't solo inside a solo'd submix.

Re: How to easily disable global muting?

CrispyChips wrote:

Quote: “the problem with the current muting method is that you can mute outputs unintentionally!”


The manual states “This way you cannot mute signals on all outputs unintentionally.”

So, the above statement contradicts a manual written by the manufacturers, experts regarding the operation of the product.

Sorry, that was a mistake on my part, I did edit it before you replied to read 'inputs' instead of 'outputs'. Pretty much the same thing applies though.

The problem is that, say, to mute a single input without affecting submixes unintentionally requires either making a new mute group with just a single channel, or leaving it in mute group edit mode, which prevents solo from working.

At the moment, I am using the second workaround, but it's quite inconvenient as I need solo too.

Like, say I just want to remove the click track from my monitor or a single headphone mix, I just want to hit the mute on that DAW playback channel in the submix, not make a new mute group to do it. This seems to me to be such a simple and obvious requirement. Turning the fader down isn't a good workaround, as it loses whatever level setting we've agreed for the click, and takes much longer, especially for multiple channels.

Compared to the average product manual produced by most manufacturers, the RME product manuals are veritable literary masterpieces. Bejewelled treasure mines of knowledge and helpful information.

I gotta agree with you there! Very nice!

Palpably, they are of little use unless they are carefully studied, understood, their guidance, adhered to. Quite simply, this apparent contradiction reveals a misapprehension of how to practically operate TotalMixFX, and I write that with complete and utter respect and the best wishes in the world.

I do think I have a valid use case here, as I'd also expect to be able to have local mutes for submixes on much larger digital desks. On a live desk, you normally have input channel on/off, and independent mutes on submixes fed from the input channels, so can work either way as required.

With respect, my sense is it will be necessary to let go of well-established, effective routines you usually trust completely, whilst operating TotalMixFX. Altogether embracing and relying upon entirely new methods, of approaching certain, specific situations.

That, it’s simply a matter of adjusting to a presently unfamiliar product and embracing different methodologies wherever necessary.

I do get that, it's just in this case I'm really struggling to find a way to make the TM mixer mutes work in a fast and safe way by default.

Quote: “I think a fail safe muting system where mutes are local is so important.”

Quote: “The Mute groups operate – other than the global mute – exclusively for the current routing.”


The fact that mute groups operate exclusively for the current routing, makes them “local” to the routing selected.

The problem is that I can't use solo when in the safe local muting edit mode.

It is “fail safe” if used as conceived, designed, produced and operated as instructed. That involves a small learning curve in how to operate it as intended, we all go through.

I do get why global mutes can be useful, I.e, in a live situation you want to remove radio mics from all mixes when the actor leaves the stage, or if something horrible happens on an input channel, you want to take it out of all the mixes as fast as possible.

For my use case, which is a recording studio, that kind of thing is rare, and it's more useful to have mutes are local to submixes.

Scientific research has proven that even rats possess an inner code of moral ethics.

If only we could say the same about all humans. smile 

However, you raise an extremely interesting point. So, it’s worth contemplating that you "appear" to think it would be “fair” for RME to shoulder the further development cost and time involved in evolving a redesign of TotalMixFX.

Always assuming they had the resources to do so, which in all probability from everything I can tell and what Mr Carstens has stated, they obviously don’t. 

So that 5% of users (your figure, which seems grossly overestimated), can have a feature that 95% of users (your figure) have no interest in whatever.

I meant the other way round. As all other audio interfaces and digital mixers (as far as I'm aware) default to local mutes on submixes, and allow global as a separate option (or in other ways like having on/off on mic input channels), it seems the 95% would prefer it that way.

Who will pay for the costs involved in that development, bringing higher prices for consumers, paying for unneeded features?

It so nearly works though that it seems a very small change to make.

Quote: “I totally accept that I could be missing something important here, maybe I just don't get how this mixer is intended to be used”

You have successfully summed up the situation extremely well.

The good news is that RME as manufacturers and the RME family of users are ready to help. It seems we all need such help.

Yes, thanks for that and I am grateful that you have taken the time to write such detailed and comprehensive replies.

And just to be clear, I have no problems with any other aspect (I have Digiface USB, connected to 26 channels of AD/DA btw), it's just this one thing the mutes that is bugging me. The Digiface even seems to make the stuff clocked from it sound better. (Though I could be imagining that one!)

Re: How to easily disable global muting?

I can't believe this masterpiece called "totalmix" doesn't offer the possibility of mute a channel independently for each submix... it cracks out tons of use cases... Hope they find a way round this limitation. I found 5 year old posts talking about this, something that every other interface in the market offers, very strange this matter keeps being unattended.. It would make me so much happier, I am sure a whole lot of people more.. Thanks RME!

13 (edited by ramses 2022-09-26 20:19:12)

Re: How to easily disable global muting?

If you have noise on an input, then you need to be able to solve the issue for all outputs/submixes at once.
Either by muting the particular input or by muting one or more outputs, e.g., monitoring.

Now figure out how long it would take, if you couldn't mute a HW input for all HW Outputs (aka “submixes”) if you needed to perform this action on a HDSPe MADI FX with up to 196 output channels?

You can better mute inputs of a particular submix by turning down faders of HW inputs or SW playback channels. Whether you click the mute button or double-click a fader to mute/unmute an input for a particular submix is not a big difference in terms of time and efforts.

No offense, please think this through again, I think it's better to leave it as it is.

BR Ramses
UFX+, 12Mic, XTC, ADI-2 Pro FS R BE, RayDAT, X10SRi-F, E5-1650v4, Win10Pro22H2, Cub12Pro