ISDN Crisis? Source Connect to the rescue

Listen in on this Source Connect interview with programmer Rebekah Wilson, who, along with an incredible team of experts, created the program Source Connect back in 2005.

What started as a conversation at the dinner table, soon turned into a reality allowing voice talent to send or receive remote recording signals and bridges to ISDN connections, allowing you to record virtually from anywhere in the world via internet or intranet and never needing to refuse a client.

Source Connect is the perfect solution to a very expensive and seemingly fading technology of ISDN. Source Connect couldn’t have launched at a better time and is fast becoming a top solution for many voice talent needing remote recordings for clients. This online software fits into a tiny ILOK Key that you take with you on the go. A program and support team that work when you do.

Having used this program after an ISDN crash and worked with their incredible support team, this is a program I highly recommend if your work requires it. Their tech team are top notch and really know their stuff. They are very accommodating and helpful and are able to work with your system and get you running in no time.

This is such an affordable option compared to ISDN costs. There are still clients who prefer ISDN but finding access to studios who offer ISDN is a more affordable option. Source Connect is a one time fee, instead of monthly costs, expensive hardware, and long distance charges. You plug in your ILOK key, open up Source Connect and begin.

Hear it for yourself – click here

To order your copy of Source Connect – let them know we sent you and they will take good care of you.

Until next time!

VO Chef Deb

Views: 1093

Sound better at Voice Over Essentials

Add a comment

You need to be a member of Voiceover Universe to add comments!

Join Voiceover Universe

Comment by Nick Daley on July 30, 2012 at 3:01pm

I have to be a bit of a realist here, sorry. About two years I built a new studio in a new area of town. The area is entirely fiber; there's not a copper telecom cable in the ground. I tried to get my ISDN line moved here and for six months I battled with Verizon - went all the way up to the CEO's office. They originally agreed that I could pay to have a copper line buried to my studio at great expense on my part. Then they changed their mind and that's where the the communication ended. I had major clients demanding ISDN so for a while I used source connect and an ISDN bridge. By "a while" I mean about a month. The latency was so bad that there was roughly a second and a half delay round trip during the session. It was extremely difficult to communicate effectively and got to the point that they practically demanded I find a new technology or lose the gig. I mentioned Source Connect to them but none of them had network drops in their audio booth. The ones who did didn't have the software and said even if they wanted to their IT people wouldn't let them install it. I tried convincing them to use their Telos box in IP mode but, again, there was either no network drop or they were using a pre-Xstream unit that was not capable of IP connections.

After a LOT of research I developed a solution that worked - it isn't ideal for everyone but here's what I do now:

I bought two Bridge-IT boxes from Tieline. A friend of mine lets me use space in his rack and maintain an ISDN line at that location. I installed one of the bridge-it units there and one in my studio. I also set up a mac mini server at the ISDN location so I can remote into the ISDN box and reboot, disconnect, dial out, change codecs, etc. I have a very fast connection at my studio and the studio where my ISDN is located does as well. With the timeline I stream uncompressed mono WAV and the latency is next to nothing - imperceptible to the ISDN client.

It works fantastic for me and if you have a local friend, even in a residential area, who can get ISDN service you can do the same kind of setup. Put the ISDN, Computer (Mini or whatever you prefer) and Bridge-IT in a little rack or cage if you don't trust them to not mess with your settings and just hope the broadcast industry catches up to reliable IP technology.  If a client of mine has a Bridge-IT unit we can avoid the ISDN all together but that's not very common. These boxes are primarily used for broadcast STLs and remote links. Both the mini and the bridge-it are half rack size so they fit nicely side by side in a 1U rack space.

Source Connect may work just fine for you so don't think I'm generally slamming it, it just didn't work for me or my clients. 

Comment by Joe Nickell on July 19, 2012 at 4:36pm

I have been doing into some reserch into AT&T ISDN issus. One thing I have found is that if the ISDN circuit is set up with the incorrect PIC or LPIC code that the ISDN calls will fail. I do not know enough about AT&T to digest all their terminology, or why but this is what I found out for a client. In AT&T's case the LPIC/PIC code is 288 for digital ISDN. My client had a code for voice ISDN and it worked for years, but recently failed this year. The PIC code tells the local switch how to route long distance traffic. Warning, this can be tedious. We found the PIC code issue from a technician, but then had to call back to the "business office" = the folks that take orders for service, and ask them to update the codes.


Background : When dialing 1010 333, you are manually selecting Sprint, dialing 1010 288 selects legacy AT&T digital ISDN.

Comment by Mike McGonegal on July 17, 2012 at 5:25pm

Will - the folks over at Soundtrack have Source Connect as do I.  Personally, I've never had connection issues with it, but I've got a 10meg DSL line coming into the house, so like others have said - having a good, fast line is paramount with it.


As far as Soundtreak goes, I haven't used it either as I'm on a PC platform, but since it's the 'new kid on the block', I can see why studios are going to be very reluctant to try it...


Hope this helps some.


Comment by Jeff O'Neil on July 17, 2012 at 5:04pm

I've been using SC for a years.   It works very very well.  The only time it hiccups is bad internet connections at the client studio.  More often than not the studio is using a total internet solution for phone and internet when problems arise.  People will argue if that happens why get it?  Well..your ISDN lines aren't connected to your biz phone so it's really no difference having a dedicated internet for SC.

Bandwidth is a must.  I haven't used it in hotels etc but I've learned it's not insurmountable.  Joe Cipriano has a section on the SC site explaining how he uses it while on vacation etc.

Can't speak to the Soundstreak question as I never tried it.  SC is more robust and stable.

When first released it was primarily for use with PTools. Other software such as Logic could patch it in.  Now SC is a connection module and becomes a plugin on your track with virtually any audio software. (non techie description.)

Support is truly among the best in the biz.  They'll stay with you until it's resolved.  I've never heard anyone mention that the support wasn't excellent or could not resolve the issues.

While ISDN is a must in LA and NY this is a no cost per session alternative that is equal in quality.  Many Telco's are phasing out ISDN as internet bandwidth becomes faster and faster.  The time will come when ISDN is just too expensive for the Telco's to maintain.

I give the software a 10 out of 10.

You can test the software for free and they'll help you get setup.  VO folks need the standard version...the Pro version is for studios.  Pro will also allow the studio to send you a digital video file and control playback at their end.  best to check with them regarding that feature as I've never needed that.

They also have a Source-live product that allows your client to listen to you record using a secure internet login.  I've demo'd that software and it does work very well but I feel it's price is too high when Skype can be used for similar situations.

Comment by Tim George on July 17, 2012 at 4:54pm
I've recently added SC and I'm happy with it so far. I've done a couple sessions using a bridge to ISDN with great success. It took a little coercing to get the enigineer on the other end to give it a try but once we did he was happy. My only complaint is the talkback delay and latency in my headphones. Anyone know a fix? I've tried lowering the h/w buffer and it helps a little with the latency Oh yeah, we did have a 5 second drop out but that's not too bad over the course of nine :30 spots.
Comment by Rebecca Riedy on July 17, 2012 at 4:43pm

I have used SC on the road a few times and found it to rely heavily on a few parameters of your location. The first thing you really need to know is the internet UPLOAD speed of wherever you are staying. Most major hotels should be fine, but I can tell you from experience that staying in a private home in Mexico might make your session problematic. Then again, ISDN is an absolute no-go, so anything is better!
The other thing that you need to check if you are staying in a major hotel is that you have access to an internet connection that is behind the hotel firewall. Usually you need to speak to the hotel manager or something and beg them to give you the password to their internal connection that is not the one they give their guests. Then the last thing you need to know is that when you get back home, you might need help reconfiguring your SE and modem for your home connection again as connecting in other places seems to mess things up. Tyson at SE is really helpful but I'm pretty sure he has to take a shot of vodka whenever I call...;-)

Comment by Mike Carta on July 17, 2012 at 4:29pm

FWIW...I'm adding SC.  I've tested it at my "get away" rural studio location. It works great. There is no ISDN service available there but I do have high-speed internet which SC likes. Make sure you go direct from your internet straight into your computer via CAT5 cable by-passing any router/modem. The faster the internet connection the better when you use Source Connect. The techies at Source Elements are extremely helpful should you need help.Now when I'm down on the farm (actually "up" on the mountain) away from my main ISDN studio or on the road with my mobile gear I can either do a bridge to ISDN using SC or go direct and not miss a session.

Comment by Will Lyman on July 17, 2012 at 4:04pm

Is this similar to a product called Soundstreak a while back, which I thought was a great alternative? In spite of its apparent usefulness, I could never get a studio or a producer to give it a try.

Comment by Thomas Bromhead on July 17, 2012 at 3:23pm

Well, I have both....and I still need both but the huge advantage of SC is that it cuts the cost of international dialups.  I did a corporate job from Melbourne, Australia to LA and there was not that panic to hurry up as I feel there is with ISDN. Call cost = 0, ISDN $5/min. A couple of times during various sessions I have had to reconnect, but it is hard to know whether it is ATT or SC.  

My main piece of advice would be to get a separate hard drive or computer if you are going to run SC so there are no conflicts with other software.  Many studios still exclusively use ISDN, so I don't think you can say I've got SC, therefore I don't need ISDN. 

© 2020   Created by VU - Founder - Zurek.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service