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Alesis HD24 vs. Tascam MX-2424
Old 26th October 2007
  #61
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Sugarnutz's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nu-tra View Post
yeah that sounds good but it wont be a bang for the buck anymore due to the limited track count on one box. Now I wish they upgraded to using sata drives instead of IDE and have a sata snake out (24-96) to a pci-e card for my mac
You won't see any upgrades as far as I can tell on the HD24. After this unit was introduced, Alesis was sold and the new company is making a ton of cash selling it just like it is. It is also my understanding that the designers/engineers for the HD24 are no longer with the company, so figure at some point this unit will disappear off the face of the earth.
Old 26th October 2007
  #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sugarnutz View Post
You won't see any upgrades as far as I can tell on the HD24. After this unit was introduced, Alesis was sold and the new company is making a ton of cash selling it just like it is. It is also my understanding that the designers/engineers for the HD24 are no longer with the company, so figure at some point this unit will disappear off the face of the earth.
Yeah, or the engineers will go out and make their own version of the HD24!..
Old 26th October 2007
  #63
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Anyone considering these types of machines should take a close look at the excellent Fostex D2424LV:
D2424LV 24 Track Digital Multitrack

I'd say that the only areas in need of serious improvement are the need for a faster/less cumbersome file export/import method (24 tracks I/O via lightpipe in real time works great but being able to pull a 300+ gig backup drive outa the machine and stick it in your daw to copy files over would be nice) and a better manual .

You get a ton of quality bang for $1500 street price bucks! thumbsup
Old 26th October 2007
  #64
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Fishmed's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by dale116dot7 View Post
Reliability. My HD24 has never crashed. I was playing at a studio this summer and in the middle of three takes (yes, three times!) the DAW crashed mid-take.
This is the reason why I switched to the HD24 from my DAW. It SUCKS having to tell your paying client that the computer locked up inthe middle of a take/session. When I started using the HD24 I used the network to transfer the tracks to edit them in the computer and them bounce them back. That was SO slow. I was very happy when they came out with the fireport.

Recently I have gone back to mixing using my computer through a summing box, but I will continure to track the tracks using the HD24.
Old 26th October 2007
  #65
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishmed View Post
This is the reason why I switched to the HD24 from my DAW. It SUCKS having to tell your paying client that the computer locked up inthe middle of a take/session. When I started using the HD24 I used the network to transfer the tracks to edit them in the computer and them bounce them back. That was SO slow. I was very happy when they came out with the fireport.

Recently I have gone back to mixing using my computer through a summing box, but I will continure to track the tracks using the HD24.
I can't remember EVER having this issue, in 5+ years of professional studio work. Sounds like the poster above just picked a studio with a badly set up rig

The times that's likely to happen are when outside vibration is an issue. I'd never want to track a live gig to DAW without a backup - in fact when I did that earlier this year, I used an HD24 (which did the job fine). I still wanted a backup though.

But since a RADAR/HD24/whatever is just a custom built PC, it should be possible to equal that with a regular PT or whatever rig.
Old 26th October 2007
  #66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishmed View Post
I was very happy when they came out with the fireport.

How much faster is the fireport compared to realtime with lightpipe?
Old 26th October 2007
  #67
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Fishmed's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanEldred View Post
How much faster is the fireport compared to realtime with lightpipe?
I guess it all depends on how many tracks you have and how long the song is. When I mixed on the HD24 I would just transfer the files to the computer via the Fireport open each file do my editing, and then transfer them all back to the HD24 for mixing. I was never so slow that I felt I had to get up and leave the room to go do something else. It just seemed like there were less steps (for me) to take using the Fireport.

(Note: At the time I made the switch, my computer was nothing compared to what is out today, so I may have had issues recording all 24 tracks to my DAW at 48khz/24bit at one time. Prior to going to the HD24 I was recording 44.1kHz/16bit on my DAW.)

I would like to say that I am VERY happy Alesis did not use Windows DOS for the HD24. Just think how long it would take to format an HD24 drive it they did.
Old 26th October 2007
  #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ImJohn View Post
Anyone considering these types of machines should take a close look at the excellent Fostex D2424LV:
D2424LV 24 Track Digital Multitrack

I'd say that the only areas in need of serious improvement are the need for a faster/less cumbersome file export/import method (24 tracks I/O via lightpipe in real time works great but being able to pull a 300+ gig backup drive outa the machine and stick it in your daw to copy files over would be nice) and a better manual .

You get a ton of quality bang for $1500 street price bucks! thumbsup
cant this be accomplished by reformatiing drives and setting to record in .bwf? then you yank the drive, put in FW400 case and dump to computer? I too have this machine.....got it for 400 bucks witha free hard drive used in a 4 space rack case (skb..but whatever). I really like the feature set and sound, but have yet to purchase a front end for it to dso some serious tracking. I was under the impression the above scenario would work, as there Ethernet card is rumored to be frustratingly so. thanks.
Old 26th October 2007
  #69
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foldback's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanEldred View Post
How much faster is the fireport compared to realtime with lightpipe?
It is much faster transferring with fireport, 15 minutes per hour of 24 track vs an hour for an hour at realtime. But, the problem with that is, you must take in the whole hour of content since you are just transferring files. Then, you're gonna open up this hour-long 24 track document in ProTools for editing and finishing. I don't like working on hour-long files. So you're gonna spend time chunking it down to manageable pieces.

Personally, I've gone back to being sure I cut a good simultaneous CD as I record live shows onto the HD24, then use the CD to review the performances and pick out the best songs for production, then transfer each good take in real time digitally from the HD24 to hard disk.

In the end, it all takes time. Fireport can transfer data a lot faster and you don't need to be in a digital audio app to move the data. One other Fireport limitation could be driver support from Alesis. Fireport does not just change the drive tray into a Firewire hard disk, you need special Alesis softare also in order to make the transfer.

I have a pair of HD24XR and love the sound quality, I clock them with a Big Ben. On my Protools system I have Apogee converters, a Neve 8816 mixer with 8804 faders, and Meyer HD-1 Monitors.
Old 26th October 2007
  #70
Hi Foldback how do they sound compared to the Apogees?
Old 27th October 2007
  #71
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
But since a RADAR/HD24/whatever is just a custom built PC, it should be possible to equal that with a regular PT or whatever rig.
HD24 isn't a custom-built PC. It uses processors typical for embedded (ie. high-reliability) applications. From what I recall it uses a Freescale Coldfire and also a DSP but I don't recall if it was Freescale DSP56000 or something else. It's been probably a couple years since I looked inside but I do recall noting what chips it did not use.

High-reliability embedded systems don't frequently use Windows or MacOS, and frequently use high-rel operating systems - OSEK is just one example that I'm familiar with. Or on smaller chips, usually they are programmed 'on the bare metal' ... no operating system at all.

As far as I can tell, most (maybe all) problems with DAW rigs are really the operating system. Windows or MacOS are not real-time operating systems by definition. Moving digital audio around is a real-time problem.
Old 27th October 2007
  #72
Quote:
Originally Posted by foldback View Post
It is much faster transferring with fireport, 15 minutes per hour of 24 track vs an hour for an hour at realtime. But, the problem with that is, you must take in the whole hour of content since you are just transferring files. Then, you're gonna open up this hour-long 24 track document in ProTools for editing and finishing. I don't like working on hour-long files. So you're gonna spend time chunking it down to manageable pieces.
Thanks Foldback. Is there any way for the software in the computer to detect marker points on the HD24? (probably a stupid question, but there has to be a way to transfer just one song at a time possibly, otherwise sounds like a small PITA).
Old 27th October 2007
  #73
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rockstar_josh's Avatar
 

That's a good question... I use one of these, and I haven't noticed if the tracks transfer with markers or not. I think I assumed they didn't and just chopped up the tracks myself and start over in the DAW. I do love the HD24XR, though.... I trained on a console, to a RADAR, so I like the feeling of tracking to a hard disk machine. I've had no problems, and the real limit of sound quality re: the converters has so far been my front end. As long as I'm using quality front end, I have quality sound. I've been impressed with tracks that have come off that machine. Ethernet = molasses. I could retake the songs faster than it takes to transfer the files via Ethernet.
Old 27th October 2007
  #74
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Fishmed's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanEldred View Post
Thanks Foldback. Is there any way for the software in the computer to detect marker points on the HD24? (probably a stupid question, but there has to be a way to transfer just one song at a time possibly, otherwise sounds like a small PITA).
I did a live recording on one long song. I was able to copy sections of the recording to a new songs. That was some time ago, but I do remember telling myself I would rather create new songs on the fly than go through that again. Once you get quick with your fingers, you can set up a new song within seconds.
Old 27th October 2007
  #75
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alessio's Avatar
 

I bought an MX 2424 used 2 years ago, and instead of the others, I have to say that is working perfectly. I use it only like a tape recorder, cause I mainly do acoustic music, I use Apogee AD 16x with ADAT and I mix OTB with a yamaha digital 02\96. I never had a crash, and even if i make some editing it seems fine to me. I paid 2500€ for it with tdif and adat board and 5 50 giga HD with extraible tray.
But I don't know how it really sound with it's own converter.... I think that all depends on the tipe of work you do.
Alessio
www.spazisonori.com
Old 27th October 2007
  #76
Quote:
Originally Posted by dale116dot7 View Post
HD24 isn't a custom-built PC. It uses processors typical for embedded (ie. high-reliability) applications. From what I recall it uses a Freescale Coldfire and also a DSP but I don't recall if it was Freescale DSP56000 or something else. It's been probably a couple years since I looked inside but I do recall noting what chips it did not use.
Fair enough - RADAR definitely IS a PC. I thought the Mackie HDRs were too, so assumed the Alesis was - my bad.
Old 27th October 2007
  #77
Quote:
Originally Posted by alessio View Post
I mix OTB with a yamaha digital 02\96.
technically that's still ITB...after a fashion.
Old 27th October 2007
  #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
technically that's still ITB...after a fashion.
You mean that out of the box is only when you convert back in analog and you mix in an analog desk?
Old 27th October 2007
  #79
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Sugarnutz's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanEldred View Post
How much faster is the fireport compared to realtime with lightpipe?
The solution I have for the Alesis transfers does not use the Fireport itself as I hate the clunky thing with the little brackets to sit the harddrive on the table. I purchased a receiver ($12 with one carrier included) for the Alesis carriers that's mounted in my DAW case and got a Firewire to IDE bridge ($50) which is hooked to the internal port of my firewire card. It's nice to just pull the carrier from the HD24 and plug it into the front of the DAW, you still have to use the Alesis software for the transfers or you could use the freeware HD24Tools available on the internet, I use the Alesis software that came with the Fireport which my client bought for me to do the transfers. The firewire to IDE bridge I bought has the Oxford 911 chipset in it and I think the transfers are a little quicker with it than the original Fireport, plus the chipset recognizes larger harddrives better than the original Fireport I have which refuses to mount some newer harddrives.
Old 27th October 2007
  #80
Quote:
Originally Posted by alessio View Post
You mean that out of the box is only when you convert back in analog and you mix in an analog desk?
Generally yes - if it's digital summing, it's ITB. You just have multiple boxes.

A summing box with select outboard is a grey area...often called a hybrid approach.
Old 11th December 2007
  #81
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foldback's Avatar
Alesis HD24XR, Big Ben, Fireport and real time transfers

Quote:
Originally Posted by NathanEldred View Post
Thanks Foldback. Is there any way for the software in the computer to detect marker points on the HD24? (probably a stupid question, but there has to be a way to transfer just one song at a time possibly, otherwise sounds like a small PITA).
I'm using Mac OS 10.3.9 with the Fireport software. Fireport is very crude but effective. It transfers a HD24-song of audio data, thats all. The song can be 24 track and an hour long or longer. I think of this as format conversion and it's a PITA with Fireport. Moving the audio from the HD24 drive to an internal Mac HD. You must move a whole HD24-song. The Mac does not know it's audio when viewing the data on the HD24 drive with Fireport software.

I was pretty excited about the Fireport system when I first saw it and for one or two tune transfers it is very cool. I mainly use the HD24 for recording live shows and it has worked great for that.

I've gone back to doing one song at a time optical transfers in real time for live album production because I can get just the part that I want off the HD24, stay digital all the way, and not be working with this hour+long 24 track monster. For speed, I jack the HD24XR into an analog mixer and work with the tracks to identify the tunes that are going on the album. When I know which tracks I'm after, I find the whole workflow to be much faster just doing the optical transfers of what I want, one song at a time. This eliminates a lot of editing time in Protools (for me) which offsets the speed gained by doing the Fireport transfer. Fireport is maybe 4x faster at moving data into the DAW but the files are huge and clunky to deal with compared to one song at a time in real time.

It seems like the last song in an hour of live recording with the HD24 is always killer so you must ingest the whole hour of content to get that last tune into the DAW. That means there are gonna be a lot of wasted MB of space on the HD.

For 99.4% of situations the sound of the HD24XR converters are equal to my Apogee X. Mostly I do rock music but also record a few opera singers and some pipe organs. I think the Apogee converters are really neutral and good sounding. Same for the HD24XR converters.

I always clock the HD24XR(s) with Big Ben, that way I'm using the exact same clock throughout the project and everything is running on it. I've read that the HD24 machines are off frequency a bit, I don't know because I've always used Big Ben. We've overdubbed and added tracks after live shows and had no tuning problems (and I'm a stickler for bad tuning and pitch problems).

The HD24XR is one of my favorite recording tools. I use a Motu 2408 to transfer all three Adat lightpipes simultaneously in real time. It works for me.
Old 11th December 2007
  #82
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Sound Chaser's Avatar
 

Solidly in the HD24XR camp

This forum is full of HD24XR bashers. But, one fact holds up. The humble Alesis unit holds up to all challengers (even Radar) AS LONG AS YOU USE IT FOR INTENDED PURPOSE.

It is not packaged and functional as a Pro unit like the Radar.
I lacks SMPTE time code and a proper BRC
It is limited compared to a DAW.

It is rock solid and stellar as a recorder.
The XR converters are excellent, PERIOD. (my 002 rack sux in comparison)
It has a multitude of uses, especially in live remote situations and makes an excellent additiion to a DAW.
It is the absolute best bang for the buck.

p.s. the drives are not an issue, they are super cheap and give you all the time you want. The caddies however, need to be re-seated when moving the unit between remote gigs. (5 seconds of work)
Old 12th December 2007
  #83
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MichaelPatrick's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sound Chaser View Post
This forum is full of HD24XR bashers. But, one fact holds up. The humble Alesis unit holds up to all challengers (even Radar) AS LONG AS YOU USE IT FOR INTENDED PURPOSE.

It is not packaged and functional as a Pro unit like the Radar.
I lacks SMPTE time code and a proper BRC
It is limited compared to a DAW.

It is rock solid and stellar as a recorder.
The XR converters are excellent, PERIOD. (my 002 rack sux in comparison)
It has a multitude of uses, especially in live remote situations and makes an excellent additiion to a DAW.
It is the absolute best bang for the buck.

p.s. the drives are not an issue, they are super cheap and give you all the time you want. The caddies however, need to be re-seated when moving the unit between remote gigs. (5 seconds of work)
I agree with everything you've said - DEAD ON!

...except the part about caddies needing to be reseated. If you leave your drives in the unit when transporting you should take them out. Taking them out is generally safer for the drive and it'll surely give the docking connector a longer life.
Old 20th August 2019
  #84
Gear Addict
Quote:
Originally Posted by foldback View Post
…...

For 99.4% of situations the sound of the HD24XR converters are equal to my Apogee X. Mostly I do rock music but also record a few opera singers and some pipe organs. I think the Apogee converters are really neutral and good sounding. Same for the HD24XR converters.

I always clock the HD24XR(s) with Big Ben, that way I'm using the exact same clock throughout the project and everything is running on it. I've read that the HD24 machines are off frequency a bit, I don't know because I've always used Big Ben. We've overdubbed and added tracks after live shows and had no tuning problems (and I'm a stickler for bad tuning and pitch problems).
Then the HD24XR still is a very good AD converter
for low value ?

Also in "monitor" setup for get converted audio signal
from digital outs without use hard drives ?



Ps:
Quote:
Originally Posted by foldback View Post
The HD24XR is one of my favorite recording tools. I use a Motu 2408 to transfer all three Adat lightpipes simultaneously in real time. It works for me
That option of the 2408 is one of best ever made .
Old 22nd August 2019
  #85
My HD24XR is still working great here. I use some Apogee and RME ADI-8 format converters to get in and out digital. Feed it ESS 9038 DAC's and playback is awesome. I use a BurrBrown PCM4222 EVM to go in. The Alesis is bit accurate and very quiet in use with a SSD and low noise fan. I bought it in 2002 and it's the longest I've ever owned a recorder before.
Old 1st September 2019
  #86
Gear Addict
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
My HD24XR is still working great here. I use some Apogee and RME ADI-8 format converters to get in and out digital. Feed it ESS 9038 DAC's and playback is awesome. I use a BurrBrown PCM4222 EVM to go in. The Alesis is bit accurate and very quiet in use with a SSD and low noise fan. I bought it in 2002 and it's the longest I've ever owned a recorder before.
So you do not use the HD24XR onboard ADA converters ?

About a comparison to the Tascam MX2424 ADA conversion ?

(are the Tascam MX2424 ADA converters same of the "DA 98 HR " series ? )

cheers

Last edited by wavewalker; 1st September 2019 at 12:50 PM..
Old 1st September 2019
  #87
I did all the comparisons many years ago when the Tascam came out. It did not sound good analog. It did not sound good digital I/O either, that was a deal breaker for me, it's a flawed system. I was proven correct in that assessment.

I do use the ADC analog inputs along with external ADC's. I tend to stream out the data into external ESS 9038 DAC's because they are in a different class. I have several of those here.
Old 2nd September 2019
  #88
Gear Addict
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
I did all the comparisons many years ago when the Tascam came out. It did not sound good analog. It did not sound good digital I/O either, that was a deal breaker for me, it's a flawed system. I was proven correct in that assessment.

I do use the ADC analog inputs along with external ADC's. I tend to stream out the data into external ESS 9038 DAC's because they are in a different class. I have several of those here.
much thanks for infos !
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