My DAW considerations thread.

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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby MetroSonus » Fri Mar 16, 2012 11:54 pm

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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby christianrock » Mon Mar 19, 2012 3:06 pm

The Novation Zero will come with Ableton Lite Live. So is it going to be something I'd even want to bother looking into? Or is it just a severely handicapped version of Live? From looking at the Ableton website it seems like it could be quite useful.
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby MetroSonus » Mon Mar 19, 2012 4:52 pm

The only serious negatives I can see are being limited to 4 VSTs and no track grouping or editing of effects or drum racks.

What it looks like it's Ideal for, is a live option. Meaning, you do all your work in Logic or something, then bump the audio into clips for Live playback. Not having that many VSTs means your mastering and sound design is kinda crippled. and you could import and track your own audio, but there wouldn't be much you could do with it, unless you were satisfied with the stock ableton stuff.

If you've got machine though, I dunno.. :lol:

what do you think you'd use it for?
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby christianrock » Mon Mar 19, 2012 4:55 pm

I dunno. Just trying to find out what it is like, I guess :lol:

Like I said, it comes free with the Novation Zero.
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby MetroSonus » Mon Mar 19, 2012 5:21 pm

Then by all means. Wouldn't hurt nothin'...
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby christianrock » Tue Mar 20, 2012 3:26 pm

Woo... I think I won't need the Remote Zero. Maschine has a Mackie Control mode where it can control Logic. I'll try that first. With a couple keys you can switch between Maschine's software and Control Mode.

http://www.macprovideo.com/hub/native-i ... ogic-users

I don't know if 8 faders will be enough for mixing in Logic. And the Remote Zero will control all other software that comes with Logic. Well, we'll see if I need it.

Edit: ah, screw it, it's just a couple hundred bucks and I need faders for mixing and knobs for panning. I think I'll get the Remote. Plus I can map it to control softsynths and I won't ever need a hardware VA again.
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby gregwar » Wed May 02, 2012 3:10 am

hey cr

I understand your desire to have faders coming from outboard but with 60mm or less you can only ball park things and jumping around fader banks and moving the wrong faders is frustrating. the mouse or trackpad is generally easier

the zero mk1 can be had for cheap my friend got one for $80 on craigslist. logic has many plug-ins and automap saves you a ton of hassle from a 'dumb' midi controller like a bcr. auto map remembers your assignments and they're super easy to change on the fly

the alternative in logic is command+l to open the assignment window. you move one knob then a software parameter and it's assigned. to save you make a logic template ex: mixing template or sound design template. it's just not as elegant as the novation (this is also how maschine works in 'dumb' mode).

I'm assuming maschine works like kore. in kore you can make a template for a plug-in. for example you open the kore plug-in, launch sylenth1 template in kore and all your kore knobs are assigned. then page 1 can be osc 1, page 2 osc 2, etc

the maschine/kore is only worth the hassle if you have komplete imho because then all you have to do is create templates for non-native instruments plug-ins (ni plugs come pre-mapped).

in the end novation is the more elegant solution because it's not just synths plugs but creating all the eq, comp, delay, etc assignments and having them stick is worth the price of entry IMHO. in the soft synth world it pays to have the least frustrating experience possible.

the last thing I'll add is logic runs purely on computer specs. a 2 year old computer is the max because apple computers generally fail at 5 years or less and just become crappier until you buy a new one, built in obsolescence (ask anyone who had an iPod die immediately after the warrante expired).

at this point in the game for a virtual setup a quad core, 8g ram and 2 7200 rpm hard drives (one internal and one external) are necessary. less and you will have uneccesary limitations on your productions. honestly for music it doesn't matter pc or mac.

it's all about specs and if you can find the above for $500 on craigslist as a pc and only $2000 for a Mac don't compromise and get a 2 core chip IMHO. if you do go the pc route cubase runs much smoother on pc and the money saved can go towards an n12.

the only real trade-off is a Mac studio machine can go online and it's relatively safe. a studio pc should be offline and the internet cables unplugged at all times unless it's absolutely necessary to authenticate a plug-in or something.

my 2c

ps if you have any questions about logic I can try to answer I've been using it about 15 years now
Last edited by gregwar on Wed May 02, 2012 3:44 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby gregwar » Wed May 02, 2012 3:32 am

pps I'm not trying to discourage you from going the Mac route I just feel very strongly about specs. I've been struggling with 2 core processors and logic for 6-7 years and my next studio item must be a quad core computer.

the plug-ins now like diva are so awesome and it's almost tragic how few instances can be run with decent latency. my work around is freezing tracks and having 2 templates one for sound design and one for mixing.

unfortunately bouncing every track from the sound design project to the mixing one not only is inflexible but takes up huge amounts of storage. you'll find external and internal hard drives fail (last year alone I went through 2 externals and at least 4 internals and 1 failed USB thumb drive)

for backing up it's much easier to have everything as midi performances, plug-in settings and a few wav/aiff tracks. those project files are a small fraction of the size and with enough CPU power and ram much more flexible.
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby christianrock » Wed May 02, 2012 8:16 pm

Thanks for the help Greg :)

I've been posting but my personal situation's still bleh, I'm still on a musical hiatus for now. I was expecting to be done for the year but things are progressing a bit better than I expected, so maybe in a couple of months I'll be back at hunting down gear. By then the new generation of Macs will be out I think, and I should be able to get more bang for my buck on used ones.

I got both Maschine and the Novation Zero Mk II. The faders on the Mk II are much longer so I thought it was worth getting it, I got a good deal on it too. Maschine I got on a trade for my Fusion. I've also got nice headphones for working at night when the kids are asleep, but I'm already seeing how my idea of not buying new monitors isn't gonna work. As a cheap and high quality solution I think I'll do Yamaha MSP3s and mix the low end with the AKG Q701s I just got. They are totally awesome for reproducing bass and go really deep.

Anyway, the idea is to use Maschine as a groovebox to come up with the drums and basic tracks, and then when I'm done, export everything as audio to Logic. Record vocals and acoustic instruments there, monitoring with the Remote. I'll try to stay away from CPU hungry software like Diva and get me an analog synth like the Minibrute or the new Boomstar, to create synth sounds. Maschine controls external devices pretty well so I think it will work OK.
My two Korgs (EX-8000 and N1R) aren't going anywhere either.

I'm going to try to go quad core with 8 (or 16)Gb memory and 1Tb HD 7200. I will probably end up going the iMac route instead of Macbook Pro - otherwise I won't have moneys left for the monitors.

So, my shopping list still has:
- Computer
- Monitors
- Logic Pro 9
- Interface (current favorite is Studio Devices USBPRE 2)

As a question, what do you use your external hard drives for? I haven't budgeted for one yet. The stuff above is pretty much budgeted already, I have the money saved up but am not pursuing buying anything right now, to maintain the peace at home...

Phase 2 of my studio upgrade will be selling some outboard equipment that will be made useless by the USBPRE2 preamps and converters, to fund 1 or 2 analogs. I'm thinking JX-10 and Minibrute or Boomstar.
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby gregwar » Thu May 03, 2012 7:05 am

external hard drives are for sample libraries

ideally you can have 3 hard drives:

one for the operating system and music apps, plug-ins, etc

one for project files like wav or aiffs

and one for sample libraries

running the sampler, wav files and os all from a single 1t internal drive will work but it's not ideal. real-time or low latency audio is very demanding and doing all from one will shorten the life of the drive, cause longer sampler loading times and could cause you to use higher latency settings.

my work around is having 2 drives one for my kontakt, dimension, east west quantum leap, esx24, etc sample libraries and storage. my internal is an ssd and can run the operating system and current project files I'm working on. then they get archived on the external to open up more space.
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby gregwar » Thu May 03, 2012 7:30 am

one tip about soft samplers is there are commercial libraries available for the emu, ensoniq, etc samplers converted to kontakt or dimention like the proteus. i'm a sampler junkie and these get you pretty close to the sounds. when I want a more lofi sound I add a bit crusher like decimort to get 12 bit or driven inputs.

there are paid ones available for stuff like the tritons, motifs or fantoms but they straddle a bit of a legal grey area and I normally shy away from them. but its not illegal for someone to sample it themselves. I'm considering doing one for my O1w and trading it with friends.

I sampled my Roland tr707 and then sold it and doing so can free up funds for other things like analog gear that is hard if not impossible to sample due to their non-rompler nature. it's a workflow preference more than anything because then everything's in the box and I don't have to deal with flakey midi editors and cables everywhere. just a suggestion
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby christianrock » Thu May 03, 2012 3:17 pm

So if I got Komplete it would make sense to install it in the 2nd drive?

This is all new for me. I think that between Maschine's already good sounds, and the two expansions that I also have the budget for will be more than enough to produce good tracks (one with more modern dance sounds, the other is a Goldbaby pack with all the classics). I'll also keep my eye on any Komplete specials because since it works within Maschine it's a no-brainer. I'll be really trying to get as much done in Maschine as I can before sending things over to Logic. I'll try the Maschine as VST within Logic as well, the advantage is that I could have two instances of Maschine running, each on its own core, and with 32 tracks instead of just 16.

I'm pretty excited about all this :) Hopefully my musical hiatus won't last too long.

How's the reliability of your SSD been so far?
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby gregwar » Fri May 04, 2012 3:12 am

ya an external drive would be good for komplete's huge sample libraries. last time I checked kontakt 4 is around 45 gb of samples and kontakt 5 is 25 gb because of a lossless compression format.

it's not necessarily the size that matters but the streaming from disk. the beginning of a patches sound loads into ram then the rest is streamed. if the same hard drive needs to access the operating system and stream the wav files of the same project it can get glitchy and buffers and latency has to be adjusted.

komplete seems to update every year and usually before they drop version 9 komplete 8 will run on special usually in the summer (then k9 prolly drops in the fall, not 100% sure). I've gotten deep discounts just don't be surprised when the new version drops a month later.

k8 is a good choice because all the plug-ins are now 64 bit afaik. chances are there will be new stuff to attract people to upgrade to k9 but I've got k6 and haven't used one tenth of the stuff. the only reason for me to upgrade would be for 64 bit plug-ins.

since you're going with a new rig I'd try to get only 64 bit plug-ins. if you're whole rig is 64 bits then you can avoid the whole awkward transition everyone's been going through with plug-in bridges and whatnot. with my next MacBook pro I'm only installing 64 bit stuff and will keep my old 'vintage' MacBook pro for 32 bit programs and plug-ins.

the ssd drive has been good for about 15 months. my first one died in a couple weeks then the second was dead on arrival. they're covered under warrante so replacement & shipping is free. the 3rd party computer store takes forever so when there's a problem I contact the manufacturer directly.

I went with an ocz agility 2 with 240 gb. the best setup for sample libraries is an ssd but so far the size, costs and benefits haven't been there. I did try having the operating system, wav files and kontakt library running off my first ssd but I melted it within 2 weeks.

in the future i'll continue to use my ssd for the operating system and programs then I might get another one for samples. with thunder bolt and 7200 rpm drives in raid it might be fast enough and cheaper to hold everything. my external is 2t and it's full so replacing it with an ssd is impossible.

I'd need at least a 480 gb ssd for sample libraries with only about 50-100 gb to spare for expansion. they sell them for about $500 but it still seems to expensive after the cost of a new computer, software and everything. maybe someday . . .
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby MetroSonus » Fri May 04, 2012 12:20 pm

my new computer's got USB 3 and i'll be looking at some external, ssd stuff in 3.0 for storage. mehaps.

Anyone know if there's any USB 3.0 sound cards on the market?
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby Plink Floyd » Tue May 08, 2012 8:08 am

MetroSonus wrote:my new computer's got USB 3 and i'll be looking at some external, ssd stuff in 3.0 for storage. mehaps.
SSDs are still too expensive. How much portable storage do you need? I have a $10 16GB flash drive & I've never filled it. I also have a portable USB ~100GB SATA drive salvaged from a duff laptop that I use for ghostery & other geekish stuffs, but that doesn't need to be blazing fast.

That said, the next internal drive I buy will be SSD for my studio PC OS drive.

And I started to say "Why don't they make notebook PCs with dual HDD bays?", but it seems they do.
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby MetroSonus » Tue May 08, 2012 3:28 pm

more than the 80gig of my current HDD. :idk:

I may just go with single, higher speed, internal drive. 350 gig is prolly enough. it' s when you start getting into porn, I mean.... sample libraries, like the east /west ones can eat anywhere from 80-250 gig :eek:

I mean, yes granted, now that i'm not 16, and my Pc isn't full of pirated TV shows, doctor who photos and mp3s, storage isn't usually a problem... I don't think i'm pushing 40 gigs on my current drive. I do have a 350 gig external, but it's slow and I use that for family photos, backing up my VST installers etc.

if i was going to get something for external (or internal for that matter) speed is where it would need to be, especially for programs that use disc streaming for samples.
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby christianrock » Thu May 10, 2012 8:51 pm

There's a mid-2009 Macbook Pro 2.2GHz Duo Core, 8Gb DDR3 RAM, and 128Gb SSD on Craigslist right now for well under my budget.
Do you guys think it's a good setup? The processor seems kinda slow for this day and age. Should I wait for something a bit faster?
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby MetroSonus » Thu May 10, 2012 9:36 pm

I have a dual 1.6 right now.. Thatd be a huge step up for me
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby christianrock » Thu May 10, 2012 9:41 pm

Hmmmmmmmm I hope he hasn't sold it yet...
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Re: My DAW considerations thread.

Postby christianrock » Thu May 17, 2012 5:05 pm

So it seems like I'm going to get me a computer after all.

I'm meeting a guy later today.

Early 2011 macbook pro 13, i5 2.3Ghz dual core, 8Gb DDR3 1333, and a 256Gb SSD.

:jam:

Then Logic and the MR816 and I'll be ready.
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