Setting Up Waves DiGiGrid DLS With Pro Tools HD And HDX

08-14-2014 10:21 AM

We’ve got our hands on the Waves DiGiGrid DLS at Pro Tools Expert and we’re going to be putting it through its paces in the coming weeks. However before we do that we thought it might be helpful to show you how it is set up with a Pro Tools HDX/HD system.
Our system is a single HDX1 card with an Avid Omni, our card is sitting inside the Sonnet Thunderbolt Chassis.
Setting Up The Waves DiGiGrid DLS Hardware

For the Waves DiGiGrid DLS hardware to work it needs three connections - a network connection to the host computer, in this case a Mac Pro.

Then a Digilink cable needs to be connected either directly to the HDX/HD card or via the spare port on the Avid interface, in this case we ran the cable back to the secondary port on the HDX card.

Then finally as we are going to be using the Omni in conjunction with the Waves DiGiGrid DLS we need to ensure we have sync, so we ran a Wordclock cable from the Omni to the Waves DiGiGrid DLS.

Setting Up The Soundgrid Studio Software

The first thing needed is the software installing, this is a two stage process. The Soundgrid Driver and the Soundgrid studio, both of which are needed.
Once this is completed it is a case of powering up the Waves DiGiGrid DLS server and waiting for the on the front to confirm that everything is working. There are three lights on the front, one to confirm a network connection has been made and then two others SGP and I/O.
In I/O mode the DLS bridges with your Pro Tools hardware and your Pro Tools hardware continues to be the playback engine whilst taking advantage of the additional Waves DSP engine. This can be used for low latency tracking and mixing.
In SGP mode the DLS works with other Native applications such as Logic, REAPER or Nuendo to offer Waves DSP processing via Waves DiGiGrid DLS.
Using The Soundgrid Studio Set-up

You can click to enlarge the image above.
The set-up screen features four main areas.

  • Hardware devices (Blue) where you set up the DiGiGrid hardware connected, here you can check connection, sync and how the I/O is allocated. You can also check and update the firmware.
  • Software device (Green) where you can see any software I/O made available to other software in your system. In the case of the DLS it now means I have 32 channels of I/O for any native software to use. However this is shared with any used in Pro Tools so this is 32 total across the entire system.
  • Servers (Orange) this shows the software is online and communicating.
  • Control (Red) this gives future options for controllers to be part of the system such as EUCON or HUI.

Checking I/O Inserts Are Allocated

In order for audio to pass to and from Pro Tools when using the Waves StudioRack I/O inserts need to be allocated in the Hardware Devices section, this is done by clicking in the arrow and then selecting them as shown below.

Starting Up Pro Tools

When starting up Pro Tools to get the set-up screen for the Waves DiGiGrid DLS the shift key need to be held down, then this appears as Pro Tools starts up.

For those using Avid HD/HDX hardware the top box need to be ticked, for those using Native software (including HD Native) then the bottom one needs to be ticked, this allocated which engine will be used for playback.
Setting Up And Checking The Hardware Settings In Pro Tools

Once Pro Tools is open then it’s a case of checking Pro Tools can see the hardware and that sync in correctly set-up, in this case the Avid Omni is the master clock.
Setting Up And Checking The I/O Allocation In Pro Tools

We want to make sure that Pro Tools has all the I/O allocated corectly in Pro Tools this is done in the Pro Tools I/O window. Here it now shows 2 x HD 192s and the Omni. We saved the set-up for future use.

Using The Waves DiGiGrid DLS PLug-ins with Waves Studio Rack

To use the plug-ins it is simply a case of going to plug-ins and then navigating to DSP plug-in where there will now be a Waves option with the StudioRack plug-in.
To use the Waves DiGiGrid DLS DSP it is a case of inserting the Waves StudioRack plug-in and then directly below it an insert so that the audio can pass to and from Pro Tools and the Waves DiGiGrid DLS.
Click to enlargeThen in the Waves StudioRack software assigning the insert send and return to match the insert on the track.


So that’s the set-up of the Waves DiGiGrid DLS in Pro Tools. It may seem complicated but 99% of these steps happen the first time the Waves DiGiGrid DLS is installed, after that the only part of the process to follow is the final two steps shown above when using the Waves StudioRack software.
Come back soon and we will be putting the Waves DiGiGrid DLS through its paces as well as looking at what the Waves DiGiGrid DLS has to offer with the pros and cons.