Timecode Show Setup

LDEvanBLDEvanB Registered User
Hello all,
so i am spending my non busy months trying to figure out Timecode on an IPC using Hog 3. I understand the setup of the consoles Timecode widget, as well as programming with Timecode, but what i dont understand yet is how to sync it to music via an external source. I have managed to send Timecode to the desk via my Ipad through the 3 pin SMPTE port, but what i am wondering is if anyone can explain how this works, basic audio/lighting timecode setups, ect. I have a macbook pro and i would love to be able to play a song from my computer and be able to sync my timecode shows, and understand also how it works in a concert setup, but i have found almost no online resources on how to accomplish this.

Thanks Much,


  • Marty PostmaMarty Postma Registered User
    edited January 2012
    There are many, many different ways of accomplishing this with various pieces of gear, but I would say (based on my experience) that there are 3 major methods:

    1 - Split Track - SMPTE and music are combined into one stero track and panned opposite one another. So you could have SMPTE on the left side and the music on the right for exmaple. This is the simplest method, but only allows for mono audio playback. You also need to be careful that this is done "cleanly" so there is no bleedthrough between tracks.

    2 - Multi Track - audio tracks and SMPTE tracks all playback via a multi-track playback system (ProTools for example). This preserves the audio quality, but you need to have enough independent audio outputs in your system to support this. I've found this to be the most common for show environments.

    3 - Master Clock to Devices - SMPTE comes from one plackback device, and this triggers events for lighting playback, audio playback, video playback, etc (provided these systems have all been programmed of course).

    Hope this helps. :)
  • LDEvanBLDEvanB Registered User
    edited January 2012
    Thats much, that is helpful. As of right now my goal is to get be able to practice in the shop with timecode programming and music. What would be the best way to do this. Should i go into protools and try to make a multitrack with a song i like. and use a USB interface to output to speakers and my macbook pros built in audio interface to output to the SMPTE port. i have an XLR-1/8 jack i used before to feed timecode so i know that works.
  • jxgriffijxgriffi Registered User, DL Beta, Hog Beta
    edited January 2012
    If you're just doing this for practice now...I would go the split track route.

    Take a song you like and using something like Adobe Soundbooth (I'm sure there are free equivalents), put the song on the Left track and grab a SMPTE source (there are free tracks out there on the web) and put it on the Right track. I usually allow for about 3 seconds of "pre-roll" of timecode before the music starts. You want to try and land the music on a 1 hour mark if at all possible.

    Export that song...

    Now, take a STEREO 1/8 Mini and split the feed so that the LEFT side goes to speakers and the RIGHT side goes to the TC Widget (you'll need to adapt to XLR).

    You now have a song with a TC stripe. Program away...
  • LDEvanBLDEvanB Registered User
    edited January 2012
    That sounds easy enough, would this be possible to do on Audacity (Mac software).
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