DiGiCo: SD7 Quantum Overview Video

by Stage Directions

When DiGiCo built SD7, they never thought anyone would fill the console. However, due to the constant rise in production values, and audiences demanding more and more from their favorite artists, tours are now regularly pushing multiple SD7s to maximum capacity. Shows are way bigger than they used to be and as a result, engineers need a lot more outputs, signals, and channels. Here's a video overview of the SD7 Quantum: 

To address this issue, DiGiCo has developed Quantum, a newer and smarter engine which offers so much more to users on so many levels and allows engineers to upgrade into new generation technology with no learning curve whatsoever. In creating Quantum, DiGiCo wanted to guarantee that its customer base could maintain a return on their historical investment by providing them an affordable engine upgrade for their existing work surface. 
DiGiCo SD7 Quantum

DiGiCo needed to make the next major technological step forward, into generation seven FPGA technology, and that's what Quantum has done. It will make shows easier to manage, with plenty of room for growth; it's a more flexible system, four generations newer in terms of capacity, therefore so much more can be done with it. Faster, more efficient, future-proof, and way more powerful.

Quantum Power
Quantum brings an unprecedented level of power and connectivity, by harnessing the latest developments in processor technology and system design. DiGiCo are now using three FPGAs as opposed to one, which simply wasn't possible before. New GTX ports have been introduced, running at 6.6GHz, with multiple 6.6GHz links between, interconnected with pairs of wires; and each pair of wires can transport up to 2,000 channels at 96kHz. This means the board rate is much faster. Before Quantum, devices would be connected up with parallel ports, and it was very difficult to lay the boards out, but with this new technology, it's just two wires as a differential pair, so the data speed is phenomenal.
The rear view of the DiGiCo SD7 Quantum 

The fast interconnectivity has allowed DiGiCo to make several FPGAs behave as one: this means you can share the workload of a device, and makes the device scalable; it can also communicate with next generation FPGAs as and when they come out. Stealth technology was the first FPGA-based audio processor of any large scale in this industry. Now it's Quantum's turn: four generations on.

Users can now allocate devices to run different parts of the console: one device deals purely with the bussing and the combining of signals; another does channel processing and nodal processing together. This means you're able to take your workload and allocate it to multiple devices.  

What's under the hood?
If knowledge really is power, SD7 Quantum boasts a massive 688 processing paths at 96kHz

Standard channel processing, whether inputs or outputs, includes Channel Delay, DiGiTuBe, Single and Multi-Channel Presets, Dual insert points, Hi- and Lo-pass filters @ 24dB/octave, four-band parametric EQ (eight on outputs) with band curve selection and Dynamic EQ on each band, DiGiCo's DYN 1 (Compressor, De-esser or Multi Channel Compressor) and DYN 2 (Gate, Compressor or Ducker).

The master section incorporates 48 gangable 48-band graphic EQs, 48 stereo effects, and 36 control groups (VCAs); and using snapshots, engineers can now switch between complete configurations in any live environment easier than ever before, be it at rehearsals, during system setup, or even at a show.

In addition, DiGiCo has included 128 busses, all of which are assignable as mono/stereo groups or auxiliary busses; and in addition to these busses, for further configurability, DiGiCo has provided a 48 x 48 output matrix , dual solo busses with True Solo, and a LR/LCR/5.1 Master buss. Essentially, users have the equivalent of 190 busses of DSP at their disposal.

Unlike all other digital console manufacturers, you don't lose Aux or Group Busses when using the Matrix as they are in addition, including the Master buss.

 SD7 Quantum Main Features

  • 256 Input Channels
  • 128 Aux / Sub-Group Busses
  • LR/LCR/5.1 Master Buss Master Bus
  • 48 x 48 Full Processing Matrix
  • 2 with True Solo Solo
  • 688 Dynamic Equalizers
  • 432 DiGiTuBes
  • 688 Multiband Compressors
  • 48 Digital FX
  • 48 Graphic Equalizers
  • Yes Waves Integration
  • 48/96/192kHz Sample Rate
  • Yes Optics

Further information from DiGiCo: https://www.digico.biz/docs/products/SD7_Quantum.shtml