788T and Heat Considerations

The 788T is a marvel of mechanical design. Using the latest 3-D computer-aided design tools and powerful visualization environments, the designers built a product that has an incredible amount of processing power and I/O flexibility. Because of its compact size, it is used in environments and applications never before possible for an eight-channel audio recorder. This brings with it several considerations for use.

All that processing power generates heat. The numerous "systems" in the unit, such as its wide bandwidth analog circuitry, low-noise A/D and D/A, and the powerful DSP processor generate heat. The primary cooling mechanism of the 788T is its aluminum top and bottom panels. Any electronic component drawing appreciable power (ie. generating heat) is thermally bonded to these aluminum panels. This construction efficiently wicks heat out of the unit and keeps internal temperatures cool. In fact, the 788T runs nearly 10 deg C cooler than the 744T while having twice the I/O. While the 788T is designed to operate in extreme temperature environments, the cooler it runs, the longer lasting it will be.

When in operation, it is very important that the top and bottom panels have a bit of 'breathing room', especially when operating in a bag. A production bag filled with a 788T and numerous wireless systems and insulating (foam) dividers keeps heat in, rather than allowing it to dissipate.


The following are a few simple recommendations on maximizing airflow to the top and bottom panels.

  1. Try to provide at least 1/2-inch of air space above and below the 788T when operating in a bag. Accomplish this with corrugated dividers or a suspension system.
  2. Turn off (click off) all unused microphone inputs. Microphone inputs draw power for both their analog and digital circuitry when active.
  3. Turn off the Li-ion battery charger when the unit is operating in a bag. The battery charger can generate quite a bit of heat while a depleted battery is being charged.
  4. When operating on a cart, place rubber bumpers on the bottom of the 788T to provide a small airspace below the unit. Do not stack items on top of the 788T without any ventilation space, except for Bobbleheads.

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