[LAU] Sound card or DAC to hook everything together?

robert lazarski robertlazarski at gmail.com
Sat Jan 26 16:44:08 EST 2008

Hi all,

I'm planning what to buy a small studio. I have two active monitors
that have XLR inputs only. I plan on adding a subwoofer when I can
afford it, which also has XLR only. I have several keyboards. From
just the keyboards my idea is easy: Hook them all to my main one, the
Korg Oasys, and take the unbalanced outputs from the Oasys and hook
them up to the monitors via TRS to XLRM Cables.

Putting linux in to the equation is where I'd like some help please. I
also want to use these monitors with linux as computer speakers. I
think the m-audio delta 66 is well supported by linux and has a
breakout box, so I would also be able run TRS to XLRM Cables from the
breakout box to the monitors. At some point i'd like to hook up the
keyboards to Ardour too for recording.

If all that is possible, how do I switch from using the computer for
sound to my keyboards - without swapping cables? Ideally an 8 channel
mixer would allow me to switch between a computer and my keyboards,
but that seems overkill as my keyboards have everything a mixer would
do in my case (eq, effects, multiple channel inputs, midi etc). I am
probably missing a simple solution, any ideas?

I looked at DAC's as an alternative or addition to the delta 66. These
are expensive, but about the same price as a mixer and might be a
better fit for the multiple-audio-sources to stereo issue I have. Any
experiences with these and linux?


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