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Standards and Practices

Standards - ISP-TAPE

The ADAT is an SVHS cartridge-based 8-track digital audio recorder. Since the ADAT contains 8 “tracks” of information, all laser show information can be conveniently recorded on a single ADAT tape. Using the ADAT is also very convenient due to it’s familiar VCR-style control panel.

The ADAT is also a very economical, portable unit. For these reasons, ADAT quickly became the defacto-standard for laser show recording and playback after its introduction in 1992.


ADAT Modification

There are several ADAT models available from both Alesis and Fostex. The original Alesis ADAT, introduced in 1992, has a black front. This was discontinued in 1996 in favor of the newer Alesis ADAT xt. The Fostex RD-8 is similar to the original Alesis ADAT, but has some additional capabilities. Fostex also makes a model CX-8 which is identical to the Alesis ADAT xt.

You can purchase specially modified ADATs which are capable of recording laser graphics and DMX-512 control signals from several ILDA members. Alternatively, you can purchase an unmodified unit and perform the modification yourself.

The modification for the original Alesis ADAT and Fostex RD-8 is covered by the “ADAT DC Coupling Modifications for Laser Graphic Recording”, Revision 002, October 1995, in the ILDA Handbook and Technical Specifications.

The modification for the newer Alesis ADAT xt, or Fostex CX-8 are not covered by ILDA documents, but this modification is available commercially through several ILDA members.

NOTE:  Signals should be recorded for full modulation using a test pattern such as a white full-screen grid. Signals should be recorded for front projection.


ADAT Track Assignments

The ILDA Standard Track Assignments for ADAT recording is:

ADAT Track Signal Assignment Notes
1 X axis -2.5V; Right = +2.5V [Front projection]
2 Y axis Bottom = -2.5V; Top = +2.5V [Front Projection]
3 Red  0V = off; +5 V = Full
4 Green 0V = off; +5 V = Full
5 Blue 0V = off; +5 V = Full
6 Show control signal SMPTE time code and/or DMX projector control
7 Left Audio No Dolby or noise reduction
8 Right Audio No Dolby or noise reduction

This ILDA standard is available for download as a PDF document - ILDA-ADAT.pdf [10 KB]

NOTE: This is NOT an official ILDA document - contact ILDA for further information


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