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Tech: multitrack

GUEST,honestfrankie 23 Oct 06 - 10:19 PM
M.Ted 24 Oct 06 - 01:12 AM
Pete_Standing 24 Oct 06 - 04:38 AM
fogie 24 Oct 06 - 04:44 AM
GUEST 24 Oct 06 - 05:14 AM
Pete_Standing 24 Oct 06 - 05:21 AM
treewind 24 Oct 06 - 06:15 AM
Rockhen 24 Oct 06 - 06:27 AM
GUEST,Darowyn 24 Oct 06 - 07:40 AM
Hamish 24 Oct 06 - 09:52 AM
GUEST,honestfrankie 24 Oct 06 - 10:05 AM
Pete_Standing 24 Oct 06 - 11:55 AM
Big Mick 24 Oct 06 - 11:58 AM
GUEST,honestfrankie 24 Oct 06 - 12:30 PM
Big Mick 24 Oct 06 - 01:41 PM
Darowyn 24 Oct 06 - 02:46 PM
GUEST,honestfrankie 24 Oct 06 - 09:38 PM
GUEST,pattyClink 25 Oct 06 - 09:26 AM
Darowyn 25 Oct 06 - 09:40 AM
Darowyn 25 Oct 06 - 09:41 AM
GUEST,punkfolkrocker 25 Oct 06 - 10:04 AM
GUEST,punkfolkrocker 25 Oct 06 - 10:06 AM
Big Mick 25 Oct 06 - 01:51 PM
GUEST 26 Oct 06 - 10:02 AM
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Subject: Tech: multitrack
From: GUEST,honestfrankie
Date: 23 Oct 06 - 10:19 PM

Hello Folkies,

   I'm about ready to give up on learning some gigantic computer/recording program and have been looking at the newer class of multitrack recorders that have hard-discs/ CD burners/ USB ports etc. Anyone out there have any experience/opinions as to good units or what to avoid?                                           Thanks


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: M.Ted
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 01:12 AM

Check the Fostex--MR-8--it is easy to use, 8 digital tracks, records to a CF card, and you can download via USB, and it is roughly the size of a volume of the Encyclopedia(with a few knobs sticking out)--you can find them for around $250-it works like an old analog unit though, with a knob or button for each function, and it is simple to operate--it is also very easy to upload files to a computer for advanced editing, if you want--

There are other units of this type around, including the various "palm studios", but, what ever you end up buying, this is a great starting point, even if just for comparison purposes--Fostex has produced a lot of good studio quality recording equipment--

One thing that you should keep in mind is that recording technology has progress to the point that this unit (and others like it) actually deliver better recording quality than was available for a lot of the old classic jazz, rock, folk recordings that we all grew up listening to--


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: Pete_Standing
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 04:38 AM

As it happens, I have a Yamaha AW16G for sale. 8 tracks simultaneous recording, 16 for mix down. Completely digital, hard disc and with CD burner. Why am I getting rid of it? I can't get my head round it and I guess I'd sooner spend the time playing, though some people swear by them.

There are others. Zoom made something similar as did Aiwa, Boss, Korg and Tascam. Check out Flea Bay for "digital recording studio" and Tascam.

I have a friend that uses an old Aiwa that has knobs and things for each channel and looks easy enough for basic recording and the Tascam 788 looks the same. Most of the newer ones don't have knobs for adjusting EQ on each channel, you have to select a channel and then use one set of controls. Achieves the same thing but doesn't make for quick intuitive changes. Most of them have incredible editing facilities, some even down to changing pitch and tempo. I guess if you are into techy things then none of this would phase you.


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: fogie
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 04:44 AM

Ive used a Marantz cassette "studio recorder" for many years, and have recently decided to look into digital studios. One of my top choices is the Yamaha AW1600 which retails at about £700 and I'm mighty tempted by its layout- take a look at it. My ony question to be answered is that I'm not sure if I can play about with the speeds while multitracking, which has proved useful when using tape, although being able to loop sequences and having sound effects and rhythm track would be a new asset. Best of luck!


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 05:14 AM

I have a Yamaha AW16 (now superceded by the AW1600). I sympathise with Peter Standing - I must have read the manual a thousand times! And you can never find the bit you want as it doesn't seem to be in a logical order. Hopefully, they have improved this on the AW1600.

But, after a very long learning curve, I can find my way round all the features, and it is brilliant for what it is at the price.
I even found out how to do a complete automated mix (with recall), something which is not even mentioned in the manual!!

I've now got a full Pro Tools set up on computer, which is actually easier to use, but AT A PRICE.


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: Pete_Standing
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 05:21 AM

Hi Fogie

That Yam 1600 looks like an updated version of the AW16G. Looks like it could be got for about £649, one place claims £609. There's a forum for the AW16G and 1600 here.


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: treewind
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 06:15 AM

I've got a Yamaha AW16G and it's not bad at all.
Full 4-band EQ and dynamics (compressor etc) on EVERY channel.
Also has a load of mastering bollocks and silly effects that I never touch.
Only two phantom powered XLR inputs (the rest are jacks) but that's usual, and the mic inputs aren't brilliant but that's usual too. (I run 1st two mics through a DAV BG-1 preamp and the rest (if needed) though a Soundcraft mixer - much nicer)

Its successor the AW1600 is 24 bit (good) and I believe has a USB connection for a PC (very good, I really wish I had that)

Takes a while to get used to, and the editing facilities aren't as good as the best PC and other screen based packages. The manual is rubbish. The index is breathtaking in its failure to contain obvious keywords. But all those 8 track studio-in-a-box gadgets have their quirks, and I don't think the Yamaha's any worse than the others.

The next one will probably be PC based, but I'm in no hurry.

Anahata


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: Rockhen
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 06:27 AM

I have a friend who has a Yamaha studio. She says the manual is rubbish, too...but she says the helpline is brilliant, she has rung it a lot.I think she said it wasn't expensive unlike most, either,but check before you ring it. I don't want people sending me their phone bills! :-)
I have an Aiwa DPS12i which is a few years old. We have recorded and mixed etc etc a cd from start to finish on it, just using the manual. I am definitely not very technically-minded but I didn't find this too difficult to understand so I figure this is probably an easy studio to use. I wonder if the new Aiwas are the same? Any one else got one?


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: GUEST,Darowyn
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 07:40 AM

Personally, I've never seen a digital multitracker which is even remotely as easy to use as a decent laptop (Mac or PC) with an Audio interface running in to a sequencer programme.
If you are stuggling with the computer programme, find someone who will show you what it will do and how to do it.
It really is much easier on a full sized screen that clicking through endless menus on tiny LCD efforts!
Having said that, I make my living teaching all this stuff, so I'm right inside the technically minded camp. On the other hand, I do see an awful lot of different systems during the course of the week, and the Multitrackers are a lot harder to use than a properly set-up professional studio.
What software was it that you were struggling with? Some are a lot easier than others. If you are anywhere local (to Worcester that is), I'll send you a student to show you what to do if you like.
Cheers
Dave


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: Hamish
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 09:52 AM

I'm another AW16e owner/user...

...got it through eBay at a silly price. It's very good, but not intuitive. If the apparently easier PC based stuff's making you give up, then go with a really simple digital all-in-one: not the Yamaha 1600.

My tuppence-worth.

Oh, and think about number of simultaneous record channels you really need.

--
Hamish


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: GUEST,honestfrankie
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 10:05 AM

Hello,

   Thanks for the input. I bounce back and forth between becoming less of a ludite and learning the computer thing or buying something simpler to use. But after reading your responses I'm not sure the multitracks are any simpler to use or not. I initially tried to learn Cubase on an old Mac but didn't have the proper manual. My friend has ProTools and I did some recording with him at the controls but it seems we spent an awful lot of time finding things.
   Need more coffee to think.                      Thanks, Frankie


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: Pete_Standing
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 11:55 AM

Well if anyone wants to but my AW16G, give me a PM


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: Big Mick
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 11:58 AM

Frankie, you might consider using something like Sonar Home Studio. The learning curve is pretty easy, and it produces a pretty good result. You will need to spend a few bucks more to get an USB bus audio interface such as this MobilePRE. Here are the System Requirements to use this.

All the best,

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: GUEST,honestfrankie
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 12:30 PM

Hello,

   Thanks Big Mick. that looks like everything I would need as I mostly do acoustic guitar/vocals with maybe an overdub or two.


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: Big Mick
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 01:41 PM

It is what I use. The band I tour with is out of Michigan and I am in New Jersey, here in the States. I use this for new songs I want them to work on. I will put a basic arrangement down, mix it, and send it off to them. Works pretty well. Handy bit of kit. For the real deal, nothing beats a pro producer, but this works fine as a tool, or for the average person trying to lay down some tracks.

All the best,

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: Darowyn
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 02:46 PM

I agree with Mick. Sonar is a good straightforward program for both Midi and Audio.
When you are used to it, ProTools is actually easier and quicker- but it's very uncooperative when you don't know where all the litte buttons are that you need to press.
Cheers
Dave


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: GUEST,honestfrankie
Date: 24 Oct 06 - 09:38 PM

To Peter Standing,

I may be interested in your AW16. I guess I should contact you directly.


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: GUEST,pattyClink
Date: 25 Oct 06 - 09:26 AM

Mick, or whoever is up for answers this morning---here's my sad story, and I wonder if the above-mentioned software would help with my problem, too.

I recently dug out an old Fostex machine to record a quartet & chorus doing 4-part stuff. Very important to have the 4 parts on separate mikes/tracks, to mix in various combinations for training tapes.
All the mikes and inputs worked, I could hear each one coming in on each track, but only Track 3 would show blinky lights and send sound to the tape. I've checked and tested and retested all the controls, and it's not me, it's the device. Somebody needs to open the thing up and work on it, and I'm not sure that's going to be worth the grief.

If we wanted to forge ahead into the digital age: what's the simplest way to go.   Could we take the 4 mikes, run them through a small mixer board, then go to a sound card to Sonar Studio?   
Or would we have to go to little low-power computer mikes?
Could Sonar Studio work off a laptop for portability or is it going to need more of a heavy-duty sound card?

Any ideas for things to explore welcome.


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: Darowyn
Date: 25 Oct 06 - 09:40 AM

Sonar will record four separate tracks at once, if you have an audio interface that has four inputs. This one for instance:-
Edirol 6 Channel This would need a firewire port on your laptop.
If you do it your way you can use a simpler and cheaper one like this:-
M Audio 2 Channel This is intended for use with a laptop.
But you will only record the stereo mix, and won't be able to re-balance the mix later.
Hope this helps.
Cheers
Dave


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: Darowyn
Date: 25 Oct 06 - 09:41 AM

PS I don't work for Jigsaw- we just buy a lot of our kit from them!
Cheers
Dave


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: GUEST,punkfolkrocker
Date: 25 Oct 06 - 10:04 AM

if you decide on the laptop solution and dont need midi.. ..

Cakewalk Guitar Tracks Pro 3

is perhaps a more apropriate audio
multi-track recording software..

and if you search around the internet,
available at good low discount prices..

http://www.cakewalk.com/Products/GuitarTracksPro/default.asp


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: GUEST,punkfolkrocker
Date: 25 Oct 06 - 10:06 AM

.. and line 6 toneport.. or m-audio Black box..

are well equipped USB audio 'cards' well worth considering


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: Big Mick
Date: 25 Oct 06 - 01:51 PM

Patty,

The software and hardware I linked to above could be had for about $300 US if I recall right. You should be able to do what you want with it, although the box interface might have to be upgraded to give you more channels. I am not sure about the Fostex without sitting in front of one. But is there a channel mute on them? Get a good sound person to look at it, Patty. I would think you could make it work. Or you could post on the Fostex Users Forum and see if someone could help you out.

All the best,

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tech: multitrack
From: GUEST
Date: 26 Oct 06 - 10:02 AM

Thanks everybody for the good information. I am considerably less clueless now!!!

I will pursue the Fostex problem further and thanks for the link. I know these things are usually operator error, but repeated tests with all 4 inputs set exactly the same with same results... in this case I'm wondering if it sat unused so long some of the contacts may have got oxidized.


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