Published 18th of June, 2020.
In this article we will cover how to setup your Series III mixer to use plugins live from Studio One.
Step 1: Ensure you are using the most up to date Firmware/Universal Control
When you launch Universal Control and it's not updated you will be prompted to update. Once done please ensure your mixer is running the latest firmware.
Please see the following knowledge base article to update your mixer.
- Link: https://support.presonus.com/hc/en-us/articles/115000957983-StudioLive-Series-III-Console-Firmware-Update
- Video on SD update: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QXdca_vWSfQ
- Video on Universal Control update: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UJ0LtJJhN_U
Please see the following knowledge base article to update your rack mixer.
- Link: https://support.presonus.com/hc/en-us/articles/115004855963-StudioLive-Series-III-Rack-mixer-Firmware-Update
Step 2: Making the connection
Connect your mixers USB port to the your computer and ensure you are using a direct connection and a working USB cable. The USB cable that came with your mixer is ideal for this.
Step 3: Studio One/Series III setup
Launch Studio One and create a new song using the template for your connected mixer. Templates are a feature of Studio One Artist and Pro versions only. The reason for using templates is that by default all the channels in Studio One are setup on a 1:1 basis, we do not have to do any routing in Studio One, it is done for you.
Once done go to channel 1 in Studio One and insert your chosen plugin and drag and drop it into channel 1.
In this example we are using a reverb plugin on channel 1 on the mixer and on Studio One v4 Pro.
Once you have the session created drag and drop "Room Reverb" onto Channel 1 in Studio One.
Ensure you have gain staged your instrument correctly. Test the instrument to ensure you are seeing its levels on Studio One, you will need to enable the "Monitor" button on Channel 1 in Studio One. Once confirmed turn off the "Monitor" button. This is important to avoid digital feed back as you set up the Series III mixer.
On the Series III mixer go to Channel 1 and change the input source to "USB" and change the "Digital Send Option" too "Analog".
Then go back to Studio One and re-enable the "Monitor" button. The audio you are hearing on Channel 1 on the mixer is the Analog input sent to Studio One and back into the mixer. You can confirm this by muting the channel in Studio One which is mute the channel on the Series III mixer.
Now any changed applied to the channel in Studio One will be heard on the mixer. Depending on the plugin used you can set the amount of Wet/Dry signal back to the mixer.
Step 4: How to keep the original instrument signal and blend in your plugin
This is used when you want to have your original instrument but blended with the plugin.
In Studio One simple route the channel out to a spare channel on the mixer. In this example I'm sending the plugin to channel 2 on the mixer. Ensure you change the input source for channel 2 on the mixer to be USB. I've also changed the plugin to be 100% wet.
Then change channel 1 on the mixer to have its input back to Analog. When done you now have the original instrument on channel 1 and the 100% wet reverb on channel 2. This allows greater control of the plugin, handy when say using plugins for vocal reverb etc.
Important points to note:
- This knowledge base article covers using only on Series III mixer with instruments plugged directly into the console. If you are sourcing inputs from a networked Series III console/rack mixer or NSB then it's not possible to return the plugin to the same channel that the instrument is plugged into. This is because those channels are required to have their inputs set to "Network", for plugins to work they need to be "USB". A work around for this is to simply patch the plugins return to a spare channel as covered in Step 4 above.
- The same process on your Series III console applies to your chosen DAW