A lot has changed in the past few years — with more than a little help from Yamaha. Where analog consoles were the only accepted means of handling serious sound reinforcement applications, high-performance digital consoles such as the Yamaha PM1D now share the limelight with their analog brothers such as the PM4000, and more recently the PM5000. Digital consoles are particularly valued in applications where programmability and recall capability are proving to be of monumental importance. As a small indication of just how much things have changed in the world of professional sound reinforcement, in March 2004 there were more than 400 PM1Ds in use in prestigious halls, broadcast studios, and touring companies around the world. The accolades keep coming in for other Yamaha digital consoles, too. The fact that the DM2000 digital production console has received both the coveted TEC (Technical Excellence & Creativity) award and the MIPA (Musikmesse International Press Award) for "Best Sound Reinforcement Console" indicates how much discerning professionals have come to embrace the benefits of digital technology. The PM5D and PM5D-RH Digital Mixing Consoles have taken the digital revolution to the next level. They are smaller relatives of PM1D, offering state-of-the-art digital performance for a significantly broader range of SR applications that require a more dedicated control surface than the DM2000. What's more, they offer a system solution that can enhance the entire sound production process from input to output through integration with digital systems such as DME64N and AD8HR.
A Choice to Meet Your Input Requirements: PM5D or PM5D-RH
The PM5D and PM5D-RH differ only in input functionality. The PM5D features standard high-performance head amps, while the PM5D-RH adds head-amp recall capability that allows head amp gain settings to be recalled along with the other console scene data.
Advanced Analog Circuitry, Including Top-quality Head Amps
Analog audio circuits are never actually "finished". Each new design, or even a change in layout, means the circuit and components must be retuned for optimum reproduction accuracy, signal-to-noise ratio, and crosstalk. Although most of the signal processing in a digital mixer occurs in the digital domain where the sound itself is really the only concern, some analog circuitry must remain and paradoxically, as Yamaha designers have learned, takes on even greater importance. The head amps are particularly important. For this reason Yamaha head amps are created with the utmost care and attention, resulting in unmatched sonic performance. The renowned Yamaha PM sound lives on in digital consoles.
Versatile Configuration with Flexible I/O Patching Capability
In a surprisingly compact frame that weighs only around 100 kilograms, the PM5D offers 48 mono and 4 stereo inputs, 24 mix buses and 2 stereo outputs, and 8 matrix outputs (expandable). The mix buses can be switched to "variable" mode for use as auxiliary buses, or to "fix" mode for pre- or post-pan group bus operation. A full complement of physical I/O connectors provides further patching capability and broad system compatibility. While internal digital I/O patching offers extraordinary signal-routing control when needed, the PM5D has dedicated connectors for straightforward connection without the need for patching, in much the same way that you'd set up a conventional analog console. But you can bring the power of digital patching into play whenever you need to specify insert points, direct outs, metering points, dynamic processor key-in points... a vast range of patching capabilities that simply would not have been possible in the analog domain.
96-kHz Processing for Superior Sound and Response
The PM5D employs the custom "DSP7" LSI for ultra-high-speed 96-kHz/32-bit processing (24-bit AD/DA, 58-bit accumulator at the EQ stage). Double-rate processing halves the AD/DA latency, and allows reproduction above 20 kHz for maximum openness and "air", as well as outstanding transient response. Like the acclaimed DM2000 and 02R96 digital production consoles, none of the PM5D's functionality is compromised when running at the full 96-kHz rate.
Extensive Channel and Output Functions
The input channels provide a range of features you'd expect on a top-class live sound console: 26-dB pad, continuous 44-dB gain trim on the PM5D or 72-dB gain trim on the PM5D-RH, phantom power, phase, HPF, and four-band parametric EQ. There are also many functions you wouldn't find on any analog console, such as a choice of two EQ types, independent gate and compression dynamics for each channel, digital attenuation/gain, delay, and MS decoding. The mix, stereo, and matrix buses also offer these features with the exception of gain trim, gate dynamics, and assignment capability that are not necessary on the output buses. The mix and stereo buses do include eight-band parametric EQ rather than the four-band parametric EQ on the input channels, for additional output EQ control. You can also pair channels both horizontally and vertically, and link EQ and compressor parameters between specified channels.
Eight Effect Processors and 12 Graphic Eqs
In addition to the extensive processing capability provided by the channel functions, the PM5D features eight high-performance multi-effect processors and 12 graphic equalizers built in. The digital I/O patching system can be used to insert these at a variety of points in the signal path, or they can be used in a standard send/return type loop. The multi-effect processors include Yamaha's outstanding REV-X reverb programs, delivering extremely dense, natural-sounding reverb. Yamaha's innovative Add-on Effects packages are also supported. Effects can be edited from the console display and controls, or from a computer running the supplied PM5D Editor software. The graphic equalizers can be assigned to the DCA faders for direct boost/cut control of individual frequency bands.
Optimized for Live Sound Applications
The PM5D offers a control format that will be familiar to anyone who has used any other Yamaha console - the Selected Channel section and Scene section are good examples. But in the PM5D these features have been refined and optimized for live sound, with emphasis on fast, easy access. Some features have evolved from features found on the flagship PM1D digital live console, such as 25 assignable User Defined keys in addition to eight Direct Recall keys for scene recall. A Fader Mode function lets you assign specified operations to the DCA faders for fast, centralized access and control, and direct-access Encoder Mode keys instantly assign a range of important functions to the channel encoders. There's a "scribble strip" space below the channel encoders and User Defined Keys if you prefer the traditional channel identification method. Full scene save and recall functionality is provided, with recall safe to prevent unwanted parameter changes.
Software Built on the PM1D Experience
Extensive feedback from the many discerning engineers who use the PM1D digital console in critical live applications worldwide has resulted in a number of refinements that have been implemented in the PM5D. The Scene function, for example, includes recall safe that allows detailed settings for each channel, selective recall, and an event list that specifies a sequence for cued scene recall. You can also save parameters in data libraries and specify the library that will be associated with a scene for maximum scene-recall safety. There's also a console lock function that can prevent "accidents" prior to an important show, and an operation lock function lets you lock specified functions while allowing access to others.
Universal power supply
The PW800W is a universal power supply unit that will deliver clean, stable power anywhere in the world - even with line voltages as low as 85V. A second PW800W power supply unit can be connected via a single link cable for redundant failsafe operation. This compact 3U rack-mount unit weighs only around 10 kilograms for easy transportation and placement.
Enhanced Interoperability with External Devices
Although the PM5D has eight matrix channels, more might be required in large installations. In such cases you can connect a Yamaha DME64N Digital Mixing Engine via a single 68-pin D-sub cable to provide additional matrix outs as well as an extensive array of output processing capabilities. The DME64N's main parameters can be controlled directly from the PM5D console. Another useful external device is the AD8HR, a remotely controllable 8-channel head amp and AD converter that contains the same outstanding recallable head-amp circuitry as the PM5D-RH. Multiple AD8HR units can be connected via a PM5D expansion slot and used as remote stage boxes. Remote control from the consoles' channel encoders is accomplished via a 9-pin D-sub cable. There's also a 4-in/12-out GPI interface, a MIDI interface, and monitoring facilities such as the 2TR IN DIGITAL input with built-in sample rate converter. The PM5D works with a variety of external equipment for smooth integration into any system or application.
Supplied PM5D Editor Application for Extended Control and Efficiency
The PM5D comes supplied with a PM5D Editor software application for Windows and Mac computers. While online the PM5D Editor can function as a viewer/controller that displays all channel levels as well as gain reduction meters, and lists the status of event lists or mix sends. Offline it can function as a total system editor that lets you prepare patches and scenes anywhere you can use your computer. Data can be downloaded to the console from a computer or Compact Flash memory card as required, providing the insurance of extra backup capability, as well as allowing individual operators to quickly load their own data as required.