Some Words for Clocks or Why do we need precise clocking

by Robert Dugan, Sound Engineer

56 inputs, all synced by Antelope Audio clocks

The Importance of Clocking
Like it or not, the digital age is coming in full force, making every audiophile worried about quality being lost. This is why it’s best to educate audiophiles and consumers about the importance of clocking. I’ll try and make this easy to understand and straight to the point. When an analog signal is about to be converted to a digital signal, it is represented by bits that are representations of the analog waveform. When two points that are represented are slightly off, they create jitter – which is digital distortion.
Clocking can play a very important role during this process. With all these signals digitized, it’s important that the timing and space between every ‘bit’ are exactly the same (in sync), so the audio source has no jitter. This is where Clocking comes into play by synching all the audio signals.

It’s necessary to have the A/D Converter Clocked at a precise measurement so all audio signals that pass through are on the same wavelength. If the internal clock of the source you have for the A/D Converter has Jitter, then those bits will be measured and clocked in the wrong moments in time. Once this occurs it’s irreversible, which is why having a Master Clock within your studio or in live practice where digital applications are being used is so very important.
The Advantages of Antelope Audio
Antelope Audio creates some revolutionary products that are helping pave the way to convert every audiophile into a digital believer. Their arsenal of products are on the cutting edge and so user friendly and the results are more than any audiophile could expect from the digital realm.
There are great products on the market, but having ones that are reliable – that won’t break down after long periods of use – is the key to Antelope Gear. You have to rely on the clock you buy to be doing its job, otherwise you’ll be dealing with Jitter.
Once, I was told to never turn off my 10M, but I had to every night when I was packing up for the truck. My 10M / Trinity combo was a beautiful combo. I used the 10M for the Rubidium Atomic Reference and as the master clock. The Trinity was where I set my sample rates that I would sample for three different sources at three different speeds all at the same time. This comes in handy with live sound and is even more helpful in the Studio.
One of these combos could power up 8 different Studio rooms. I love Antelope, for the ease of use and the thinking that went behind all of their products. You no longer need to individually clock one studio at a time – Antelope Audio’s products are perfect the moment they arrive at your door.

Robert Dugan, Sound Engineer

About Robert Dugan
Robert has been interested in audio from a very young age and decided to pursue a degree in Audio Engineering. He graduated from SAE Institute of Technology with an outstanding 4.0 GPA.
Immediately following, he went on tour all over the world as a Tour Manager, Production Manager, Front of House Engineer, and Monitor engineer working with Grammy winning artist to small bands still trying to make it.
Since August 2011 Robert has been working as Production Manager and Front of House Engineer with Mike Posner.

3 thoughts on “Some Words for Clocks or Why do we need precise clocking

  1. Could we please have someone with some REAL technical knowledge about clocks and their importance, comment on this thinly disguised advert for Antelope. Thanks

  2. Great to see young engineers posting on Antelope’s blog – obviously inspired by the gear and Igor’s genius. Quite a REAL article, as it shows clocks “at the coal-face”. Thanks Robert. Good to see your enthusiasm was not thinly veiled :-)