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The Concepts and Implementation of the Multichannel Audio Digital Interface (MADI) Format

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The Multichannel Digital Interface, a serial data format better known as MADI, was created to satisfy the need, as perceived by a group of manufacturers associated with digital audio multitrack tape machines and audio mixing consoles, for a simple, economic, easy-to-implement Multichannel Audio Digital Interface for use throughout the industry. It was intended that the proposed MADI format, including technical guidelines and associated information, would be made available publicly once the concept had been documented and verified through the use of physical hardware. In addition, the format would be presented to the AES and EBU for consideration as a digital audio standard. The MADI format is now a reality, having been physically proven and presented to the AES and the EBU for consideration as a ratified standard. This paper presents the events and concepts behind the format, the format itself, and the practical implementation aspects of a MADI interface design, thereby providing increased industry knowledge in response to the interest shown by users and manufacturers alike.

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