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Developed by Yamaha and based on FireWire, mLAN is an open protocol for the transport of audio, MIDI and synchronization data. This digital network for music applications employs and extends IEEE 1394, the industry standard high-performance serial bus more commonly known as FireWire. Many manufacturers have already joined the mLAN Alliance because mLAN was designed as an open rather than a proprietary solution. This organization's goal is to promote the development of mLAN-compatible devices that are easily integrated into the net and operated.
A single driver and just one patchbay application support all mLAN-enabled devices within the network. In practice, this means that the given audio software (for example, Cubase or Logic) addresses all devices simultaneously via a single ASIO or CoreAudio driver, just as if the entire setup was a single device. In addition, the MIDI and audio signal flow may be routed freely and data stored without reconfiguring cable connections. What's more, mLAN-compatible devices may be connected to each other without the benefit of a computer, for example, in order to extend the number and types of ports on a digital mixer.
To date, mLAN support has been limited to devices equipped with Yamaha's FireWire Controller chips. TerraTec Producer's FireWire audio devices are powered by the BridgeCo IEEE1394 line of controllers, so the PHASE 24 mLAN now brings to the table another chip solution. The PHASE 24 audio system may be operated with proprietary TerraTec Producer driver and software support whenever mLAN access is not required.
TerraTec Producer aims to endow all legacy and future FireWire products with mLAN.
PHASE 24 FW still sells at the same MSRP of 249.00 euro, and mLAN support is provided free of charge. In May/June, a Windows XP-compatible version will be posted on TerraTec Producer's website for downloading.