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Full Text Searchable PDF User Manual
360 Systems’ new DigiCart/E Ethernet Audio
recorder builds on a decade of experience gained
delivering DigiCart II recorders to television
broadcasters. DigiCart/E is more than an
improvement on the digital cart machine
concept – it’s the foundation of the new, high-
performance, Ethernet Audio system for
television broadcasters. DigiCart/E is 100%
compatible with earlier DigiCart recorders, can
play files produced on them, and uses similar
front panel commands. A key feature of the 360
Systems’ Ethernet Audio
network is the link to
and PC-based audio workstations. Audio
programs produced on DAWs can be easily
accessed for playback on DigiCart/E.
Networked Audio without
No computer and no mouse – just the hands-
on efficiency of real buttons for all operations.
DigiCart/E is designed from the ground up for
broadcast professionals. It’s fast, straight-
forward, and easy to use.
DigiCart/E Works the Same
Way as DigiCart II
Everyone who knows how to use DigiCart II
will know how to use DigiCart/E. It brings
better displays, better screen messages, and new
networking features, with the same familiar buttons.
Complete File Compatibility
with DigiCart II
All earlier DigiCart files can be played – whether
Dolby AC-2, 16-bit linear, 44.1 or 48K – so
valuable program content and archives can be
carried forward. DigiCart/E can also create new
files for use in DigiCart II, so earlier hardware
investments remain a valid part of any new facility.
Make Digital Transfers to
the New DigiCart/E
• The standard 100MB Zip disks for DigiCart II
still move files back and forth to DigiCart/E.
750 or 250MB Zip drive
also reads 100MB disks.
• The original D-NET file transfer protocol
using AES ports has been maintained, making
it easy to move valuable files into the new
• AES/EBU ports perform digital machine-to-
machine transfers. DigiCart’s 75-ohm AES
ports on BNC connectors can transfer files as
far as 1,000 feet.
New Editing Tools
DigiCart/E provides a faster way to edit audio.
The weighted front-panel jog wheel moves rapidly
back and forth, making it easy to place marks or
set time points. DigiCart/E offers these non-
destructive editing features:
• Head trims
• Tail trims
• Pre-roll times
• Gain change
Edits can always be undone, and trim points can
be easily changed for a future re-edit of the cut.
DigiCart/E provides clear indications of edit
points and the present location within a cut.
Features & Benefits
Questions & Answers
Models & Accessories 10
Ethernet Audio Recorder
Advancing an Industry Standard
File Interchange with Digital
The new DigiCart/E employs wave files
(.WAV) as a new native format, and supports
broadcast wave (.BWF) extensions. It is
compatible with most popular workstations,
including Pro Tools
. Using Ethernet as the
file-exchange medium, DAW files can be
exported in .WAV format to the 360 Systems’
Ethernet Audio server, where they are
immediately available from any DigiCart/E
Local Audio Storage Plus
DigiCart/E provides an important extra level
of reliability by storing important audio files
on its own local hard drive, separate from the
file server. For example, by optionally copying
files to a DigiCart/E, playback is virtually
guaranteed, regardless of the status of the
audio network. Redundancy is a key part of
the system design. For example, should a file
commonly used by Master Control be lost on
the file server, it could be played from the local
hard drive on Master Control’s DigiCart/E.
New Audio Standards for
Television Production and
24-Bit Audio Quality
DigiCart/E’s 24-bit audio circuit design
approaches 120 dB of dynamic range from
the analog inputs. Our Bit-for-Bit
design also maintains 24-bit integrity
through AES ports, assuring error-free
reproduction not only of standard PCM
files, but also of Dolby AC-3 or Dolby-E
Sample Rate Compatibility
Although most users will work at a 48 kHz
sample rate, DigiCart/E is equally adept at
44.1, 88.2 and 96k. The high-quality
sample rate converter can be positioned at
either machine input or output, permitting
conversion of any sample rate to 48K, or any
other rate. Now 44.1, 88.2, and 96k music
masters received from compact disks or an
audio workstation can be changed to
standard 48K broadcast files.
DigiCart/E plays files of any word length – 16,
20, or 24-bit. In addition to recording new
material at 24-bits, it can also deliver 16-bit
digital audio for compatibility with DAT
machines or earlier DigiCart recorders.
Mixed File Types Allowed
DigiCart/E can store audio in many different
formats, and play them consecutively without
changing machine setup. Any desired output
format, such as 48K – 16-bit, can be selected,
regardless of how the original file was recorded.
High-Speed Transfers Through
7When it’s time to actually move a file to or
from the server, the Ethernet Audio network
can move files many times faster than real-time.
Serial and GPI Control
A variety of serial and parallel ports adapt
DigiCart/E to most facilities:
• An RS-422 serial port operates with standard
ES-Bus protocols; it is compatible with most
automation systems, with DigiCart II, and
with our new RC-Series remote controls. It
also supports Peripheral Bus “E-Mem"
commands, giving DigiCart/E direct control
by popular video switchers.
• Five optically isolated GPI inputs provide
control of play, stop, record, pause, and loop.
These conform to the DigiCart II connector
for easy upgrades.
DigiCart/E Uses a Time-Proven
DigiCart recorders are hands-on machines.
Its physical buttons, knobs and display make
it a good choice for fast-paced operations,
with direct access to frequently used
functions. The new DigiCart/E continues an
eleven-year industry operating standard. Most
users will never open the Operations Manual
to make full use of DigiCart/E.
• Instant access and playout of audio from anywhere in a broadcast facility
• Same familiar operations as DigiCart II Plus
• File interchange with DigiCart II via Zip disk, D-Net, AES/EBU or linear transfer
• Utilizes popular .WAV files as a native format
• Record and playback to local drives, or to the network file server
• Hot Keys for instant-playback of audio clips, local or network
• Over 19 hours of 48K stereo storage on the internal hard drive
• 100Mb/s Ethernet interface to the network file server for fast audio transfers
• Zip drive for import/export
• LCD displays 7 lines of text, 40 characters in length
• 24-bit A/D, D/A converters
• Read/write Dolby AC-2 data format (use is
• Sample rates: 44.1K, 48K, 88.2K, 96K
• Sample Rate Converter can generate any output sample rate from stored files
• AES/EBU Digital I/O on XLR-3 connectors
• IEC-958 Type II digital I/O on BNC connectors (consumer)
• Line level analog input and output on XLR-3 connectors
• Output level trims on rear panel
• 14-segment LED level meters with clip indication
• Threshold record trigger
• Headphone jack with level control
• Sync sources include internal crystals, AES-3, S/P DIF, AES-11 (black)
• Alphanumeric keyboard connector
• Cordless infrared alphanumeric keyboard (optional)
• RS-422/485 remote port on DB-9 connector
• Supports DigiCart/II ES-Bus serial protocols
• Supports Peripheral Bus (E-Mem) serial commands
• Supports RC-230 remote control
• Five GPI inputs with tally output, DB-25 connector
160 GB hard drive
• Playlisting, local or network
• Software updates via Zip disk or network transfer
• Operation from 115 or 230 volts
• Compact 2U high x 19” wide for rack or table-top use
Features & Benefits
16 or 24-bit, linear PCM
Native File Formats
WAV, DigiCart II Linear and Dolby AC-2
n Selectable; Dolby AC-2, 48K stereo
10Hz to 21 kHz ±0.2 dB @ 48K sample rate
44.1K, 48K, 88.2K, 96K stereo pairs
116 dB typical
116 dB typical
Inter-Channel Phase Deviation
<0.1 degree at 15kHz
>90 dB at any frequency
Electronically balanced, Z=20k ohms, XLR-3 female
Common Mode Rejection
Better than 60 dB @ 120 Hz
Maximum Input Level
Rear panel trim, output level
Quasi-peak, 14-segment LED display with clip indication
Nominal Operating Level
+4 dBu (provides 16 dB headroom)
Sample Rate Converter
24-bit, 3:1 ratio; input or output
Balanced, Z=100 ohms, XLR-3 male
Maximum Output Level
Front panel 1/4” (6.35mm) jack with level adjustment
Digital Audio Inputs
1. AES/EBU, XLR-3, 110
2. AES3-ID, BNC, 75
3. IEC-958 type II, BNC (w/ RCA adapter)
Digital Audio Outputs
1. AES/EBU, XLR-3 female, 110
2. AES3-ID, BNC, 75
3. IEC-958 type II, BNC (w/ RCA adapter)
Output Word Size Conversion
24-bit to 16-bit by TPD or noise-shaping
Digital Audio Sync Reference
Internal crystal, AES-3, or AES-11 (BNC)
100 or 250 MB Zip
Internal Hard Disk
160GB standard ATA interface
Audio Start/Restart Time
64 x 240 pixel graphic LCD with backlight
Ethernet, 100 Base-T
File Transfer to/from DigiCart II D-NET, Zip disk
GPI Remote Control
Remote contacts with lamp drive; 25-pin“D” connector
9-pin Serial Remote Control
RS-422/485; ES-Bus or peripheral-bus interface (E-Mem)
Cue Output (secondary marker)
Open collector output
Cue marker may be individually erased or relocated
Hard Drive Characteristics
Hard Disk Reliability
MTBF >625,000 hours (6,240 POH/year @ 35°C)
288-bit Reed-Solomon ECC
<1 error in 10
<10 errors in 10
Drive or Disk Temperature
5° to 55°C (41° to 131°F)
Relative Humidity, Noncondensing 10 to 85% RH
24°C/hr Max (75°F/hr)
To 3,000 m (10,000 ft)
10 Gs 1/2 sine wave for 11 ms duration (write)
1 G P-P at 5-300 Hz; Sinewave,1/2-octave/min sweep
• AC Power, 115/230 volts, detachable cord with IEC connector
• Power Switch
• Ground Lug with thumb nut (frame)
• Ethernet Port (100 Mbps)
• Alphanumeric keyboard port, PS/Z
• GPI Control, 25-pin D-connector
• Serial Port, RS-422/485, 9-pin
• Remote Control Port, 15-pin (360 Systems remote control)
• Remote Bus, RS-422, 9-pin (360 Systems remote control)
• AES-11 Sync Input, 75-ohm BNC
• AES/EBU Digital Audio Input, XLR-3
• AES/EBU Digital Audio Output, XLR-3
• AES-3-ID digital input, BNC; also IEC 958 type 2
• AES-3-ID digital output, BNC; also IEC 958 type 2
• Analog Audio Outputs, Balanced, +4 dBu, XLR-3
• Output Level Trims (2)
• Analog Audio Inputs, Balanced, +4 dBu, XLR-3
250 MB Zip
Drive & Cartridge Characteristics
Cartridge Drive Reliability
MTBF >100,000 hours
Drive Insertion/Removal Cycles
Disk Insertion/Removal Cycles
<10 errors in 10
<10 errors in 10
<1 error in 10
Drive or Disk Temperature
10° to 32°C (50° to 89.6°F)
Relative Humidity, Noncondensing
10 to 80%
Maximum Temperature Gradient
7g 1/2 sine wave for 11 msec
0.7g P-P at 5-17 Hz; 0.25g P-P at 17-500 Hz
Standard 2U 19” rack; built-in rack flanges
3.48” x 17.00” x 12.00” (88mm x 433mm x 305mm)
115/230 volts AC, 50-60 Hz, 25 watts
18.25 lb. (8.3 Kg)
UL, C-UL, CE, FCC
Why should I consider
DigiCart/E over other
networked audio systems?
• More DigiCart recorders are in use in
television broadcast than any other brand of
hard disk audio recorder. It has an 11-year
• DigiCart/E is 100% compatible with your
present investment in recorded audio, disk
libraries, system wiring, and operating methods.
• DigiCart recorders are one of the most
reliable pieces of broadcast equipment ever
made. Tens of thousands of people already
know how to use DigiCart recorders.
• People like hardware-based solutions. It’s
faster and easier to use than a PC. 360
Systems’ audio network makes economic
sense for small and mid-size stations. It can
be expanded to almost any size without
sacrificing the original investment.
• 360 Systems’ audio network is conservative,
based entirely on proven technology, and
can be maintained by available network
In what ways is DigiCart/E
compatible with my investment
in earlier DigiCarts?
• Operating controls are very similar. People
familiar with DigiCart II can immediately
• Files created on DigiCart II can be played
on DigiCart/E. Your entire library of
recorded audio is directly playable. Transfer
methods include Zip
disk and D-NET.
• Files for use on DigiCart II may be created
on DigiCart/E, and exported on
Zip disks or by D-NET. Export file types
AC-2 and 16-bit linear files.
• Serial control via 9-pin RS-422 is identical.
• GPI control by contract-closure is identical.
• File-naming conventions and ID numbering
schemes are compatible.
• All DigiCart recorders employ professional
XLR-3 connectors for analog and AES/EBU
digital audio, plus 75-ohm BNC connectors
for AES-3-ID and IEC-958 Type II
(consumer) digital audio.
What does DigiCart/E do better
than its predecessors?
• Network access to centrally stored audio
from any location in the building.
• Native wave (WAV and BWF) file formats
for compatibility with workstations
• Compatible with all sample rates from 44.1
• Compatible with audio word lengths from
16-bit to 24-bit.
• Converts any input sample rate or word
length to any other, for storage.
• Converts any stored file to any sample rate
or word length for playback (real-time).
• Records, plays and edits in standard wave
(WAV) file format.
• Front-panel Hot Keys for instant playback
• Easier navigation with buttons for Drive,
Directory and File.
• Much larger LCD permits easy browsing,
displays five titles at once with continuous
• Easy-to-ready interactive menu items.
• Includes headphone jack with
• Integral rack mounting; only 2U (3
How much delay occurs when
playing a cut from the file server?
Because a cut is immediately buffered in local
DigiCart memory when selected (as are all
Hot Keys), playback starts instantly.
What are the audio inputs
• AES/EBU interfaces appear as XLR ports
with transformer isolation and also as
75-ohm BNC ports (AES-3id-2000).
• Analog inputs are balanced on a XLR-3
connector with pin 2 hot, Z=20K/leg, +4
operating level, 16 dB of headroom to
• Analog outputs are balanced,
Z = 50-ohms/leg, +4 operating level, full
scale output = +20 dBu. Outputs have a rear
panel level trim. Audio connectors have gold
plated pins for low noise.
Questions & Answers
Is there a separate AES/EBU
A separate AES-11 sync input is provided on
the rear panel.
What sample rates does
DigiCart/E operate at?
DigiCart/E can record and play at standard
sample rates of 44.1K, 48K, 88.2K and 96K.
DigiCart/E permits different sample rates to
co-exist on its hard drives. It is equally adept
at playing different rates, even when back-to-
back within a play list
What digital audio word widths
does DigiCart/E operate at?
Files may be created in either 16-bit or 24-bit
word widths. The internal A/D converter is
24-bits, but can also produce high-quality 16-
bit files. Digital audio inputs of any word
length are acceptable, and can be converted to
16 or 24-bit lengths before being recorded. All
conversions take place in real-time.
Does DigiCart/E contain a
sample rate converter?
A 24-bit sample rate converter (SRC) is
available on AES/EBU digital inputs and
outputs. It may be used to convert any input
sample rate to a preferred recording standard.
For example, a compact disc (always a 44.1K
audio stream) can be easily converted to 48K
and recorded as a 48K file within DigiCart/E.
The sample rate converter can also be used to
provide an AES/EBU digital output at a rate
different than that used to record the file. For
example, a music master may exist on hard
disk as a 24/96 file, but can still be played out
(in real time) as a 48K, 16-bit audio stream —
or any other sample rate.
DigiCart/E’s file flexibility permits audio to be
stored at its “native” sample rate and word
size, and then converted to a new standard on
a project-by-project basis.
Can digital audio word lengths
24-bit recordings may be dithered to 16-bit
for output, and 16-bit input data streams may
be recorded as either 16 or 24-bit words.
Is the Dolby AC-2 data format
from earlier model DigiCarts
Dolby AC-2 processing is carried forward
from the earlier DigiCart II to maintain file
compatibility. It is possible (though by no
means required) to record new files in that
format, and also to import and play DigiCart
II files in Dolby AC-2 format.
Can DigiCart/E accept a
feed from program distribution
Each DigiCart/E recorder includes both stereo
line-level analog inputs and an AES/EBU
digital input. Either may receive a feed from a
control room output. Long-term logging is
possible if desired, as the maximum file length
is in excess of 32 hours.
What audio file formats does
DigiCart/E record and play?
• Linear PCM in 16-bit or 24-bit WAV
(or BWF) format
• Linear PCM in 16-bit DigiCart II format
• Dolby AC-2 as in DigiCart II
Can a DigiCart/E record directly
to the file server?
All DigiCart/E recorders can record directly to
the network file server, or to their internal
What editing operations are
Editing tools include head-trim, tail-trim,
and pre-roll time. Edit points may be rapidly
located with the weighted jog wheel, or by
typing a desired location. Edits are pointers
(for use within the DigiCart product family)
and are non-destructive. Other DSP-based
editing features are fade-in, fade-out, and
Questions and Answers,
Can cuts be looped?
Accurate editing tools make it easy to create
virtually seamless loops
What about working with
DigiCart recorders employ 360 Systems Bit-
for-Bit technology in digital recording. Input
data received digitally will be replicated exactly
at the output, provided such data has not been
edited, sample rate converted, re-dithered to
another word size, or subjected to some other
DSP process such as fade-outs, etc. Standard
digital recording is always Bit-for-Bit.
How does DigiCart/E handle
such as Dolby AC-3, Dolby-E,
360 Systems’ Bit-for-Bit digital architecture
guarantees that encoded data will not be
corrupted by internal machine processes.
Dolby Laboratories markets stand-alone
encoders for their proprietary formats. These
may be connected to 360 Systems’ DigiCart/E,
which will then act as an “audio data” recorder
for Dolby-encoded multi-channel audio.
Can stored cuts be locked or
Operators may invest a great deal of time
cutting a piece of music to fit one of their
shows. DigiCart/E can lock files to prevent
modification by other parties.
Are real buttons used for firing
DigiCart/E has real illuminated buttons on its
front panel and on its optional remote control.
“Hot Keys” also exist on both.
Is there a playback stack or
memories) for each DigiCart?
As many as 1,000 customizable “playlists” may
be created and stored on each drive. Each
playlist may contain an unlimited number of
cuts, and each can be given its own unique
name, representing a show, a user, or any other
identifying characteristic. Playlists can be
nested, looped, and single-stepped.
Can pre-built playlists be
accessed from any location?
When playlists and audio cuts are stored on
the network file server, they can be accessed
from any location on the network. A sequence
of cuts may be developed in an edit area, and
then accessed for production on a stage.
Can files be transferred
between DigiCart/E and the
network file server?
Files recorded to DigiCart/E’s local drive can be
transferred to the file server, or vice-versa. Note
that original recordings can be made to a local
drive, or to the server; there is no requirement
to move files except as a user convenience.
How can saved cuts be imported
and exported to an external
DigiCart/E includes a Zip
enough to archive a majority of file sizes
used in broadcast. The drive can also read
100-MB disks to exchange material with
DigiCart II recorders.
Can DigiCart/E handle
“peripheral bus” or E-Mem
Yes. A menu determines what format is
accepted by the 9-pin serial port.
Can DigiCart/E accept the
same automation commands
as earlier models?
Yes. Major automation systems such as
Harris/Louth will directly control DigiCart/E.
What about GPI control?
Five GPI inputs are provided on a 25-pin D
connector: PLAY, STOP, RECORD, LOOP,
PAUSE and SECONDARY. All include an
open-collector output for operating an LED or
Can I play audio if the file
server goes down?
DigiCart/E contains its own internal hard
drive. Mission-critical locations such as Master
Control can keep “local” copies of important
cuts so they can always go to air. DigiCart/E
does not have to be connected to a network,
and also operates as a stand-alone
Questions and Answers,
Model RC-320 Desktop Remote Control
16 Hot Keys for rapid playback of pre-assigned Cuts or Stacks
Locates Cuts by entering the ID number
Enters Cut ID numbers
Direct access to the Stack directory
Enters/confirms new selections
Selected Cuts or Stacks are mapped to any of sixteen presets
Visual preview of a Playlist
Assembles Cuts into a list
Plays a Cut or Stack continuously
Places machine on “hold” in both Play and Record
Edit, Setup, Utility
2-line x 20 character VFD display
Double-shot molded legends, color-coded
1.875” x 11.5” x 7” (47.6mm x 292mm x 178mm)
Model RC-235 Infrared Keyboard
• Compact size / Cordless / Easy to store
• Enter Cut Titles and Numbers
• Controls Ten Primary DigiCart/E Functions
• Keys can be mapped to Hot Keys or Playlists
The RC-235 wireless keyboard is designed for remote control of the DigiCart/E recorder from a distance of 25 feet. The
absence of a connecting cord makes it convenient to set the RC-235 aside when not needed.
The infrared receiver plugs into the keyboard jack, and may be positioned to facilitate pickup from the keyboard. Fifteen
different channel settings are available for each keyboard/receiver pair, so multiple units can be operated in the same room
The 88-key layout includes embedded numeric keys, plus 10 function keys mapped to operate primary DigiCart features.
These include: utility menu, setup menu, edit menu, view list, find, pause, loop, record, stop, play, and cancel.
Models & Accessories
DigiCart/E with 20GB hard drive, 115 volt
DigiCart/E with 20GB hard drive, 230 volt
Full function wired remote control
Infrared keyboard remote control
Operations manual for RC-320 Remote Control
Spare Serial Cable for RC-320, 25 ft. (7.5m)