Dell QSC Q-Sys Switches are marketed as “plug & play” but there are a couple of key notes to be aware of when working with these.
- If you have one single switch, or 2-3 switches of different models, it is not “absolutely” required to configure them, they will work as is HOWEVER, the following items would still be a good idea to be able to manage the switch as they all come out of the box with a set IP.
- Q-SYS NS series switches come out of the box with set IP addresses.
- NS-1108P: 192.168.0.130
- NS-1124P: 192.168.0.140
- NS-1148P: 192.168.0.150
- If more than 1 of the same model switches will live on a network the IP address must be changed, or you will have an IP address conflict on the switch interface as well as the IGMP Querier (you likely want to change the IP address anyway to be in scope of your network to manage).
- Log into the switch. You will have received an sheet inside the box with the username and password. IP addresses are as stated above.
- To change this IP you need to go under the switching menu and change the IP on the interface. When you do this you MUST select the VLAN 1675 which is the default VLAN of all the ports from the factory and change this IP address here and apply.
- You MUST then log back into the switch at the new IP (changing your own to access) and save the configuration (disk in upper right corner).
- You will also need to change the Querier IP, go under multicast support, Querier and again select the VLAN 1675 and change the Querier IP to match what you just set of the switch. The switches come with “election” turned on for the Querier, so as long as you do these two things the switches will figure out which one will be the Querier. Again save the configuration (disk in the upper right corner).
- Save the configuration to Disk by clicking on the disk Icon (left most icon below) in the top right corner.
- If you DO NOT save the configuration on most switches including the Dell/QSC, all changes that have been made since the last save will be lost when the switch looses power. This is handy if you make a mistake you can just unplug and re-plug the switch to get back to the last good save.
- You should also consider updating the firmware on the switch. This can be done by going to Dell Support and entering the Service Tag of the switch directly in the support menu and then going to drivers. Recent fixes will be listed here, this is usually a good idea as the manufacturers regularly post fixes and updates to the switching platform. It is 1 version of firmware for all of the models. The switches appear to ship with a 6.4 version, as of time of writing this Dell is up to 184.108.40.206.
Not doing the above IP changes and having multiple QSC/Dell switches of the same model on the same network/VLAN will cause issues with IGMP and multicast support which will in turn make things like Dante Discovery for Dante Controller not work correctly as well as Q-SYS Discovery in the Q-SYS Configurator. This may also cause some other unpredictable behaviours depending on how Dell deals with IP address conflicts at the switch level.
In case anyone is wondering, the customer may also setup a different VLAN IP for VLAN 1, which often network admins may use as the management VLAN to allow you to manage your network outside of the rest of the network range.