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Recommended Workflow for Creating a HAL System

Although there is a great deal of flexibility built into the HAL System, we can recommend a workflow for most efficiently designing and configuring a HAL System. This topic explores this work flow, providing a high level view of its steps as well as links to more detailed information.

tip: Planning up front is the key to a successful deployment. Notice that you don't actually need to create anything in the Halogen software application until Step 4 (although you can use the software to help you with the earlier steps if desired).

Workflow Details
Step Task Location
Learn about the HAL System.

Review the HAL System documentation. We recommend that you initially focus on high level overview information. The Getting Started section of this help system is a good place to begin.

HAL Documentation
Create preliminary design.

As is true with any audio product, it is essential that you identify your requirements and have a basic system design in place before setting up and configuring the details of your HAL audio system. How many zones will you need? Where will you be placing your speakers? How many inputs will be needed? Will the system need remote control capability?

Outside of HAL System (although you can use Halogen to help with this step)
Choose physical hardware.

Decide which physical hardware components you will need to implement your design. Which HAL host do you need: HAL1x, HAL2, HAL3s, or HAL4? Will you be using RADs? If so, which ones and how many do you need? If you need additional RADs, DRs, Zone Processing, or analog inputs or outputs, you may need some Expansion Units. How about remote control? Do you need some DRs?

As a convenience, you may want to open the Halogen software at this point and use its Hardware Workspace to experiment with and quickly test different hardware configurations.

To learn more about the hardware available for your HAL System, see Hardware Components.

Inside or Outside of Halogen
Specify hardware in Halogen.

Open the Halogen software application. In this step, you'll be working in the Halogen Hardware Workspace specifying the hardware components of your audio system. The host always defaults to HAL1x, but you can change this by using the New button to create a new configuration that uses the HAL of your choice. Once you have a suitable HAL, you drag hardware objects from the hardware palette onto the appropriate hardware port displayed in the Hardware Workspace, and then configure the hardware as desired.

For more details, see Working in the Halogen Hardware Workspace.

Halogen Hardware Workspace
Specify inputs and outputs.

You now open the Halogen Processing tab and begin working in the Processing Workspace. First up is the I/O Processing. The I/O palette in Halogen is populated with all the inputs and outputs resulting from your selection of hardware. You simply find the input and output blocks you plan to use and drag them into the Processing Workspace. You can drop them anywhere you like, but we recommend placing them on the left side of the Processing Map. You'll be setting up the actual audio routing in a later step.

You can work with these input/output blocks any way you like. For example, some designers prefer setting up all of their inputs first and then setting up their outputs, while others prefer to configure all the way from input to output at the same time.

For more details, see Working in the Processing Workspace and Working with the I/O Palette.

Halogen Processing Workspace
Specify processing.

Staying in the Processing Workspace, you now move to the DSP palette, where you drag over the processing blocks you want to use in your system. The DSP palette includes blocks for controlling dynamics, filtering, mixing, paging, room combine configuration, and more. Simply drag the blocks you want and drop them anywhere in the workspace area.

For more details, see Working in the Processing Workspace and Working with the DSP Palette.

Halogen Processing Workspace
Wire everything together.

Now that you have placed all (or most) of the ingredients for your audio system on the Halogen Processing Workspace, you can now wire the blocks together to achieve your desired routing and processing. To wire two blocks together, you click a block output node and then click the input node of the other block.

For more details, see Connecting Blocks.

Halogen Processing Workspace
Configure, adjust, and fine-tune your system.

Still working in the Processing Workspace, you can now configure detailed settings for each block, customize your Baseline Preset, configure specialized presets, set up control linking between audio processing parameters and controls in the Control palette, configure the details of your paging system, and more.

For more details, see Working with the Control Palette and Presets.

Halogen Processing Workspace
Test and troubleshoot.

After you've completed these design and configuration steps and have connected all the physical hardware, it's time to test and troubleshoot your system. The HAL System contains numerous features that make the testing and troubleshooting process much easier than in days gone by.

For details, see Troubleshooting.

Outside of and within HAL System and Halogen
10 Relax! Outside of HAL System—maybe even outside of work!