In its most basic form, the Merging Hapi hardware provides eight AES3 (via AES59 D-Sub) and eight ADAT (light-pipe) inputs and outputs. The ADAT port can also be configured for two-channel optical S/PDIF, if required. The unit’s connectivity can also be expanded further via two option card slots, with options including eight or 16 channels of analogue I/O in various flavours (see box), or 64 channels of MADI, plus up to eight more channels of analogue inputs and outputs. And that’s all in an elegant, 1U rackmount case with an integrated mains power supply. For the record, the larger 2U Horus features 64 channels of MADI and 24 channels of AES3 I/O as standard, with six option card slots for up to 48 channels of analogue I/O or additional MADI ports.
All of the analogue input card options feature excellent high-quality mic/line preamps with all the usual functions, and most of the analogue boards are offered at two price levels, depending on whether you need a 384kHz sample rate and DXD/DSD format support or not. The standard cards support all the usual PCM sample rates up to 192kHz (see box). Digital synchronisation is provided via word-clock in and out on BNCs, and the unit also accepts linear time-code (LTC), MIDI and video references via a D-Sub connector. The Merging Hapi can also serve as the Ravenna network’s master clock, if required, and in addition to a universal mains inlet IEC socket (90-260V AC), a 10-14V DC coaxial power input is also available as an option for mobile battery-powered applications.
The Merging Hapi maximum channel count and minimum latency vary with operating system and sample rate. Under Core Audio on OS X (10.8 and later) the system can accommodate up to 64 channels at all sample rates with a 32-sample minimum latency. Under ASIO on Win 7 (and Win8, 32- or 64-bit) it supports 64 channels at base sample rates, 32 at double rate, 16 at quad rates, and eight at DXD and DSD. The minimum latency is also higher at 64 samples.
The hardware unit is finished in an off-white paint, and features removable rack-ears. The only controls on the front panel are illuminated power and home buttons on the left, and a colour 160×128-pixel OLED display and rotary encoder/button on the right. Both quarter-inch and 3.5mm headphone sockets are also provided on the front panel. The rear panel has an IEC mains inlet, two option card slots, a 25-pin D-Sub for the AES3 I/O, a pair of ADAT light-pipe ports, two word-clock BNCs, a 15-pin D-Sub for the time-code, MIDI and video sync connections, and two RJ45 network ports.
Standard Connections (Base Unit):
- 8 AES/EBU I/O (on DSub 25)
- 8 ADAT or 2 SPDIF I/O (on TOSLINK)
- RAVENNA – AES67 I/O (on RJ45)
- SYNC – LTC/MTC/VideoRef/Wck (requires CON-D15-VTC cable)
- 2 slots for AD8D/AD8P, DA8/DA8P and MADI option cards
- AC or DC power connections
- Detachable rack ears for placement in a standard rackmount
- AD8D and AD8DP standard and premium Mic/Line Input cards
- DA8 and DA8P standard and premium Line Output cards
- MADI I/O option cards