551: Writing Music for the Picture Business, with David Metzger

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Glad to hear a brief mention of Dante. It wasn’t in the show notes, so here’s a reference: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dante_(networking)

If you are into audio and geek details, Dante is a fascinating technology that has been mostly overlooked by podcasters, vloggers, and consumer audio.

It is a standard that is heavily used in live broadcasting for routing audio. The key benefit is that it is a software system layered on top of standard Ethernet networking for low-latency, deterministic audio transmission.

Unlike audio video bridging (AVB) which is a hardware IEEE standard for doing audio on an Ethernet network. AVB requires all the networking equipment to have hardware support for AVB so it is not an easy upgrade for existing gear. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Audio_Video_Bridging

There are a variety of Dante devices including dongles that can add Dante support to regular devices such as speakers and microphones. Think about the flexibility of being able to plug a microphone into an Ethernet cable anywhere in your home, office, or building and route the audio to any other destination including recording, live performance, or streaming.

No distance limitations like USB, XLR, or FireWire and no special connectors/wires other than regular Ethernet cable.

What is interesting in my corner of things is that some residential higher end audio/video gear (amplifiers, relievers, multi-room audio distribution systems) are starting to add support for Dante so these features can be added incrementally to existing equipment just has basic Ethernet.

(Think of a standards-based alternative to Sonos, AirPlay, and other proprietary schemes for routing audio on a network.)

Dante only supports wired Ethernet (for latency reasons) so it isn’t a complete replacement for existing, tech, but a lot of interesting things it can do.


Metagrid seems rather expensive to me. I’d appreciate it, @MacSparky, if you give us a longer take on it some time. (As you probably know) I’m a big Streamdeck user - but could use more buttons and I have an original 12.9” iPad Pro sat next to my Mac. This might be ideal but it is quite a lot of money.

One of my favorite episodes so far. It probably helps I’m a music teacher.

It seems a rare occurance where a guest gets @MacSparky to spend money, especially in real time!


This was a really interesting episode and I really enjoyed his personality.


Just want to say how happy I was to get this episode in my feed (as a composer-musician myself). Top notch guest MPU! Great episode. Also glad I fall in the middle of the same Venn diagram as @MacSparky – people who love Macs : people who love jazz


Really good episode. Thank you.

This was one of my favorite episodes I love hearing from guests who work in fields that are not obviously related to computers, but really benefit from them.


Wonderful episode! Wow!

(Tried Metagrid, works great on iPadOS 13, crashes on 14.)


But did you get $21 of value with it?

absolutely, I put this against buying a streamdeck.
To play with, and decide if I want to add a streamdeck later on I think the price is fine.

With KM native integration it’s absolutely perfect to automate your workflow.

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Thank you very much for one of the best MPU ever. I especially love the passion and kindness of David Metzger!

So it was £29 but can see this could be good value.

I set up a button for PowerPoint and one for BBEdit. Three-finger swiping left and right between the apps brought up the respective pages.

On WiFi it was slow but I plugged in via USB and that was much faster. I’d probably recommend USB for another two reasons:

  • I can charge my iPad reliably.
  • I won’t be messing with networking.

So I would give Metagrid a thumbs up, too.

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I love the auto sync with keyboard maestro.
Create a Macro -> go to iPad; create button, done!

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Agreed. David was a great guest we’ll have him back at some point in the future to catch up. I bought meta grid only to find the host app crashes on my Big Sur beta machine. Sad trombone. Hopefully they’ll get it updated soon.

I’ve been in contact with the dev. And they’re working on it.
They’re very responsive, so that’s a good sign.

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I just signed up to their forum here.

In “squee mode” :slight_smile: with Metagrid:

Out of the box there’s a Finder profile. It mostly does what I would want it to do.

Of course, I’ve gone for the 11 x 10 grid size - as I have with all the app-specific profiles. (Having an original 12.9” iPad Pro.)

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Such a good episode! Thanks to all involved.

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This was a really fantastic episode! Thank you to all involved in getting this out there. I am a nerd and have messed around with audio equipment a little bit here and there, but my sister works in the music/film industry and this episode was a great jumping off point for me to understand her work a little more and have some great conversations!

I really appreciated all of the talk about the duplicate setups, the software in use, and how it really is difficult to make a transition when things are in progress. It makes so much more sense to me know why some people wait a little bit to upgrade. Thank you again!