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SW8™ FAQ

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Can I use the SW8 backwards to direct a bunch of signals and toggle them between two outputs?

Sure! Keep in mind that you should only use the D-subs as the XLRs are tied to the transformers which will disturn the signal levels.

Can I use a MIDI controller to remotely control the SW8?

Yes. To do this you will need a MIDI to contact closure interface. These are readily available. You can also remotely switch the SW8 using a latching footswitch.

Can I use one D-sub and one set of ¼" inputs and toggle between them?

Yes. The input connectors are wired in parallel - so using either or is fine.

Can I switch a bunch of mics with the SW8?

Probably not… and certainly not when they are phantom powered as you may encounter a huge 'boom' in your audio system as the phantom re-energizes the capsules.

Why did Radial put direct box transformers in the SW8?

Mic levels coming off the stage are easy to manage. By incorporating mic-level direct box outputs on the front panel, you can easily dovetail the SW8 into any standard concert touring snake system without having to run dedicated line level signals from the playback system to the FOH mixer.

Why do backing track systems require multiple channels?

When you perform in various venues, the sound constantly changes. One room may be highly reverberant while another may be much more subdued. The engineer will also adjust the mix between instruments such as the balance between drums and bass depending on the size and sound of the venue. Whether you are dealing with live musicians or backing tracks, the same applies.

Can I use any steady tone for the auto-switch function?

Yes. Although we recommend a 1kHz test tone, any steady state signal will work. You can even use modulated tones like SMPTE to do the switching by turning on the built-in filter.

Why do you use plastic jacks on the SW8?

Actually, they are glass-filled nylon connectors with nickel silver contacts. These are tougher than steel yet help to reduce noise as each one is completely isolated from each other. A full ground plane is employed to further reduce noise.

Why does the SW8 employ an external power supply?

Today, manufacturers must adhere to very demanding electrical codes from countries around the globe. This includes both electrical and radio frequency issues. If we were to manufacture products to meet each country's specific requirements, we would incur huge cost increases which we would have to pass along. By using external power supplies, we can buy these in large quantities and make sure they are tested to pass electrical requirements. This saves you money. Another reason: 99% of all product failures are caused by either power supply failure. We include a second power supply at no charge to ensure your SW8 keeps on working!

Can I use the SW8 as an 8-channel direct box for keyboards?

Yes. Just keep in mind that you do not have dedicated ¼" throughputs. Connect your keyboards to the ¼" input set-A and use the parallel D-sub connector as the thru. The isolated XLR outputs are used connect to the snake system and mic inputs on your mixing console.

What happens if the power goes down?

We designed it to work like a home alarm system. If power goes off, the unit will revert to Input-A and pass signal. The global -20dB pad will also revert to its default setting and be turned off. The audio path is 100% passive so power will not affect the audio… only the LED indicators and A-B switching.