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Alternatives to Pro Tools Ultimate with HDX
Old 27th June 2020
  #31
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T_R_S's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post

The ONLY way to get 64 io is with a Native HD card or an HDX card.
If you have an Ultimate license along with a Digilink license plus the correct ORION HD INTERFACE AND RIGHT version of Pro Tools USB 3 with 64 channels of I/O will work in Pro Tools natively over USB 3 ...
Old 2 weeks ago
  #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanC View Post
Keep in mind that .7 RTL is only possible in HDX at 96k, with no insert fx and no auxes,

Pro Tools HDX vs S1/Quantum Latency

@ ProPower has been the one who is consistently working the hardest for ultra low latencies AND actually testing RTL with a function generator instead of taking a stat out of context.

He's saying 1.5ms is more realistic at 96k, and then roughly doublish for 44.1/48. And that is only true if using the "10 sample" plugins. TDM was IIRC 2.4ms assuming all plugins added 0 samples.

One thing to keep in mind is that nearly all live performance IEM mixes are more in the 3-6ms range. Latency from digital mixer and ADC/DACs (usually 1-2ms), latency from Dante (.25-.5ms or more in large systems), latency from digital wireless transceivers (3ms), plus added latency from personal monitor mixers (.8-1.5ms).

That being said, 3-6ms at 44.1/48 in very large sessions is difficult in native consistently. Once you are moving up to the 64 and 128 buffer you're higher than that for sure (especially at 44.1/48), and more if a digital personal mixing system is added on top.

I'm not here to debate about acceptable latency limits though. I know it's a huge priority for @ ProPower , and who am I to disagree. Plus if there was a switch in the studio that would change everything to 0ms all the time with no drawbacks- I sure as hell would turn it on!

I think if you're looking for ultra-low latencies (sub 1ms) when needing multiple headphone mixes, Analog probably makes the most sense. Although as I understand, passband group delay of a 4 pole analog high-pass filter is still in the .8ms range. Decent smallish mixer, mytek private q, a couple outboard verbs and a half normal patchbay.

Do you have an HDX rig now? It's pretty easy to measure RTL for yourself with a 2nd computer (I use my laptop). It might be useful to know what RTL your system actually has now in your own real-world scenario.
thanks Ryan. I do own an HDX rig. The latency is a non issue. Not sure what it actually is while I'm using it, but I don't notice any latency. Thanks for letting me know i can test the latency. I do record at 96K and 44.1K. Both have zero noticeable latency.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #33
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by jason kalman View Post
thanks Ryan. I do own an HDX rig. The latency is a non issue. Not sure what it actually is while I'm using it, but I don't notice any latency. Thanks for letting me know i can test the latency. I do record at 96K and 44.1K. Both have zero noticeable latency.
Cool man-

Yeah I think it's worth at least considering that, and possibly measuring your latencies for your real world workflows when looking at alternatives. Do you use a personal headphone mixing system as well?

FWIW none of the large scale FOH + Dante + wireless microphone transceiver + wireless IEM transceivers used in shows are going to get anywhere close to sub 1ms. AFAIK, the best wireless systems are 2-4ms each way! Total RTL of a large format live sound setup these days is probably around 6ms best case scenario.

In any case, I did end up installing the DAL Livemix- I love the system overall, and really like the option of bypassing the daw entirely while tracking a group. Not only for latency sake, (which is always ~1.5ms from input to headphone mixer), but also for the fact that you can use it this way with any daw, the artists and engineers can talk to each other (and even connect phones etc directly) without the daw being open, during bounces etc. Also if everything is isolated, someone can do punches while others are practicing something completely different...

It does have the one source two mixes thing that psychomonkey is talking about- but I'm finding there are significant benefits as well as the obvious downsides. Of course it can be used monitoring through the daw as well...
Old 2 weeks ago
  #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanC View Post
Cool man-

Yeah I think it's worth at least considering that, and possibly measuring your latencies for your real world workflows when looking at alternatives. Do you use a personal headphone mixing system as well?

FWIW none of the large scale FOH + Dante + wireless microphone transceiver + wireless IEM transceivers used in shows are going to get anywhere close to sub 1ms. AFAIK, the best wireless systems are 2-4ms each way! Total RTL of a large format live sound setup these days is probably around 6ms best case scenario.

In any case, I did end up installing the DAL Livemix- I love the system overall, and really like the option of bypassing the daw entirely while tracking a group. Not only for latency sake, (which is always ~1.5ms from input to headphone mixer), but also for the fact that you can use it this way with any daw, the artists and engineers can talk to each other (and even connect phones etc directly) without the daw being open, during bounces etc. Also if everything is isolated, someone can do punches while others are practicing something completely different...

It does have the one source two mixes thing that psychomonkey is talking about- but I'm finding there are significant benefits as well as the obvious downsides. Of course it can be used monitoring through the daw as well...
RyanC,
Thanks for sharing your experience with different setups! Very informative. I don't use a personal head phone mixing system, I just plug my headphones into my Avid Omni for monitoring or I use my monitors (Focal). Sounds like you are on a way more professional level than I am. I just record in my modest home studio and occasionally go to a pro studio now and then when I have a song or songs worth the cost to get tracked, mixed and mastered by pros.

Back to the original topic, it's amazing how far we've come technologically speaking with audio gear, but we still have to battle with Latency. What shocked me the most was how much latency I got with an Apollo TB3 system running Logic Pro. Absolutely unusable for tracking instruments...even at the lowest buffer rate and 96K. I suppose using UA's Luna might solve the problem, but I don't care enough to bother. I'll stick with a PT HDX system for now.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #35
Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanC View Post
It does have the one source two mixes thing that psychomonkey is talking about- but I'm finding there are significant benefits as well as the obvious downsides. Of course it can be used monitoring through the daw as well...
If I'm only tracking one source, in a way I prefer the UAD workflow to HDX. It kind of does the oldschool "ready tape" thing where you can hear playback and live vocal at the same time, regardless of whether you're punched in or not.

But not for anything multimic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jason kalman View Post
What shocked me the most was how much latency I got with an Apollo TB3 system running Logic Pro. Absolutely unusable for tracking instruments...even at the lowest buffer rate and 96K. I suppose using UA's Luna might solve the problem, but I don't care enough to bother. I'll stick with a PT HDX system for now.
That does sound odd. I have a TB Apollo Twin, and never run higher than 48k - I was tracking guitar yesterday and it was fine at 64 samples, even 128. Something sounds off with that.

And yes - Luna would give you more of an HDX experience, but you need an Apollo to use it - no editing sessions on laptop with no hardware, or bouncing between studios with different interfaces. No thanks!
Old 2 weeks ago
  #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
If I'm only tracking one source, in a way I prefer the UAD workflow to HDX. It kind of does the oldschool "ready tape" thing where you can hear playback and live vocal at the same time, regardless of whether you're punched in or not.

But not for anything multimic.
Yeah, I can see that- I definitely wouldn't want to manage a multimic mix with only a mouse, bouncing between different apps etc.

With the Livemix, I like it because I have a headphone station in the control room plugged into the mains, so I can control the monitor mix in the exact same way everyone else is. Also I can push my mix to anyone elses, or take control of (and hear) anyone's mix from the CR. The EQ's and comps are also global, which works out well here.

It still would be great if I could toggle between monitoring from the livemix or through the daw (with the latency) for the control room only. The other option is just making stem mixes for the headphone feeds in the DAW, which also works fine for me at 64 buffer or even 128. PT is running really well for me at even 32 sample buffers in the 2020 versions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
That does sound odd. I have a TB Apollo Twin, and never run higher than 48k - I was tracking guitar yesterday and it was fine at 64 samples, even 128. Something sounds off with that.
I was just thinking the same. Maybe there were some higher latency plugins in there?
Old 2 weeks ago
  #37
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@ jason kalman

You might also check out studio one. Even just with your Avid hardware to see if it works for you. It does two cool things, it will auto-bypass inserts that have more than 3ms of latency, and it will create a separate 'monitor chain' of plugins that will bypass downstream high latency plugins for the monitor/record tracks, but not for the playback tracks.

The downside is a lot of tracks recording at once can have the 'single core peaking' problem and send FX can end up with a lot of 'predelay' (you can swap in inserts while tracking). It's pretty slick if it works out for your workflow- pretty much hit record on any track at any time and you won't have latency issues due to plugins in your project. It definitely helps to have a fast computer if you use heavy plugins and large sessions though.

You can rent the full Studio One 'pro' now for $15 a month. Cool way to demo it without limitations.

Last edited by RyanC; 2 weeks ago at 03:29 PM..
Old 2 weeks ago
  #38
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post

That does sound odd. I have a TB Apollo Twin, and never run higher than 48k - I was tracking guitar yesterday and it was fine at 64 samples, even 128. Something sounds off with that.

And yes - Luna would give you more of an HDX experience, but you need an Apollo to use it - no editing sessions on laptop with no hardware, or bouncing between studios with different interfaces. No thanks!
It seemed odd to me also. I should go back and see if there was something odd in the session that might've caused the extra latency. Thanks for letting me know you are able to track with no issues.

I feel the same way with Luna. It doesn't offer the flexibility modern producers need.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanC View Post

I was just thinking the same. Maybe there were some higher latency plugins in there?

You might also check out studio one. Even just with your Avid hardware to see if it works for you. It does two cool things, it will auto-bypass inserts that have more than 3ms of latency, and it will create a separate 'monitor chain' of plugins that will bypass downstream high latency plugins for the monitor/record tracks, but not for the playback tracks.

The downside is a lot of tracks recording at once can have the 'single core peaking' problem and send FX can end up with a lot of 'predelay' (you can swap in inserts while tracking). It's pretty slick if it works out for your workflow- pretty much hit record on any track at any time and you won't have latency issues due to plugins in your project. It definitely helps to have a fast computer if you use heavy plugins and large sessions though.

You can rent the full Studio One 'pro' now for $15 a month. Cool way to demo it without limitations.
It was a minute since I last opened that session, so I'll have to go back and take a look. I have tracked with the Apollo with Logic before and it wasn't a serious issue, although noticeable. There just isn't the tightness you get when tracking on an HDX system or Tape....back in the day. When I used to use a older USB or firewire interface back in the 00s, the latency was unbearable. I would literally have to play off to sound on. I'm so happy those days are gone.

I'm a fan of Studio One. The last track I did in a pro studio was done on Studio One and sitting next to the producer watching him work with the software made me a believer! Thanks for the suggestion
Old 2 weeks ago
  #40
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by jason kalman View Post
It was a minute since I last opened that session, so I'll have to go back and take a look. I have tracked with the Apollo with Logic before and it wasn't a serious issue, although noticeable.
Is this for vocals or?

It's worth taking a look at every link in the chain there- anything digital, including headphones with noise cancelation, digital guitar fx or digital rack fx, monitors with DSP will all have some amount of latency. Even a 4 pole (24dB/oct) IIR high pass filter has around .5ms of group delay in the pass band (as I understand it).

I suspect there is a bell curve in terms of latency sensitivity, and to some extent it's what you get used to. Sound travels at a rather sluggish 1.1ms per foot...so for instance pipe organists have always dealt with more than anything we're talking about here.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanC View Post
Is this for vocals or?

It's worth taking a look at every link in the chain there- anything digital, including headphones with noise cancelation, digital guitar fx or digital rack fx, monitors with DSP will all have some amount of latency. Even a 4 pole (24dB/oct) IIR high pass filter has around .5ms of group delay in the pass band (as I understand it).

I suspect there is a bell curve in terms of latency sensitivity, and to some extent it's what you get used to. Sound travels at a rather sluggish 1.1ms per foot...so for instance pipe organists have always dealt with more than anything we're talking about here.
Wow, thanks for the advice Ryan, awesome! For this particular case it was while tracking acoustic guitar. I will definitely make sure I look into what you mentioned. Again, thanks so much!
Jason
Old 1 week ago
  #42
Gear Addict
 

Cubase /Nuendo with RME anything. The perfect power combo. Reliable and flexible. Costs a fraction too. Will last for a long time. Won't depreciate as any AVID hardware will.
Old 1 week ago
  #43
Quote:
Originally Posted by audioloud View Post
Cubase /Nuendo with RME anything. The perfect power combo. Reliable and flexible. Costs a fraction too. Will last for a long time. Won't depreciate as any AVID hardware will.
So you get integrated low latency plugins and monitoring with DSP with complete integration?

I don’t doubt it’s a great system, but it’s still a compromise. What’s your experience using HDX?
Old 1 week ago
  #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
So you get integrated low latency plugins and monitoring with DSP with complete integration?

I don’t doubt it’s a great system, but it’s still a compromise. What’s your experience using HDX?
Hey there! You are right, my experience with it is limited. So sure, take my opinion with a pinch of salt!
Although, I did quite a lot of research, talked to a lot of other colleagues etc before investing in a new system around 2-3 years ago and HDX was in the cards for a while (so I think I am more or less aware of the pros and cons talking points) but an RME system made more sense FOR ME. (Not being tied to PT obviously helped in the choice)

You get no latency processing, in monitoring, from the RME mixer without having to add anything.

The compromise as you note correctly would be: not being able to RECORD with plugins and having to use the built in processors of RME TotalMix for monitoring (which are kind of vanilla, no fairchilds etc).

The other possibility, with a good machine, is using a really low buffer (64ms) and using happily any plugin you wish for monitoring.

Another possibility is to use the "direct monitoring" function in Cubase/Nuendo and spread the channels to an external (even really small) mixer for basic monitoring duties. Zero (or near) latency. That is what i have been doing for many years.

I have never found the need to record through plugins, because.. hardware,
and because of my personal workflow, but I understand some might want to be able to do it.

The extra thing I love about my setup is that anyone, with ANY system, DAW etc could bring a laptop and connect via USB to my RME madifaceXT and they are magically connected via Orion32+ to around 40 in/outs, patchbay ,preamps, comps, monitoring etc... To the whole studio.
One USB cable. Any DAW welcome.
(i don't know if that is even related to the HDX discussion but it is another reason why I'm so happy about this system)

Having said that, please do let me know if I am missing something, or not considering every possible aspect..



Best regards!

Last edited by audioloud; 1 week ago at 07:51 PM.. Reason: important detail
Old 1 week ago
  #45
Quote:
Originally Posted by audioloud View Post
Hey there! You are right, my experience with it is limited. So sure, take my opinion with a pinch of salt!
Although, I did quite a lot of research, talked to a lot of other colleagues etc before investing in a new system around 2-3 years ago and HDX was in the cards for a while (so I think I am more or less aware of the pros and cons talking points) but an RME system made more sense FOR ME. (Not being tied to PT obviously helped in the choice)
To be honest with you, it makes more sense for most people financially.

Quote:
Originally Posted by audioloud View Post
You get no latency processing, in monitoring, from the RME mixer without having to add anything.
Well you do have to add something - you have to deal with a 2nd monitor mixer.

Which is fine if it's a mic or two, but if you've got 16-40 lines live and you're trying to work out what's in record and what isn't...it's not fun. Which is why it's worth investing if you're running a room of any size, and not if you're not.

Quote:
Originally Posted by audioloud View Post
The compromise as you note correctly would be: not being able to RECORD with plugins and having to use the built in processors of RME TotalMix for monitoring (which are kind of vanilla, no fairchilds etc).
Well, that and being able to build the mix as you go without worrying about overloading processors etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by audioloud View Post
The other possibility, with a good machine, is using a really low buffer (64ms) and using happily any plugin you wish for monitoring.
Yeah - if you're happy to put up with that (and again, not build your mix as you go) it's fine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by audioloud View Post
Another possibility is to use the "direct monitoring" function in Cubase/Nuendo and spread the channels to an external (even really small) mixer for basic monitoring duties. Zero (or near) latency. That is what i have been doing for many years.
Again - fine for small numbers of channels, a real pain with proper sessions. A commercial studio needs to be able to cater for anything they can physically fit in.

Quote:
Originally Posted by audioloud View Post
I have never found the need to record through plugins, because.. hardware,
and because of my personal workflow, but I understand some might want to be able to do it.
It's not really about recording *through* plugins more about monitoring with them on. So you can as I've said build a mix without necessarily committing.

Quote:
The extra thing I love about my setup is that anyone, with ANY system, DAW etc could bring a laptop and connect via USB to my RME madifaceXT and they are magically connected via Orion32+ to around 40 in/outs, patchbay ,preamps, comps, monitoring etc... To the whole studio.
One USB cable. Any DAW welcome.
(i don't know if that is even related to the HDX discussion but it is another reason why I'm so happy about this system)
Yes that's cool. I can do the same thing with Thunderbolt - anyone can bring their laptop and run HDX - of course that IS limited to PT (really) - but most band producers are running PT anyway, so it's kind of irrelevant.

And writer/producers ALWAYS bring their own rigs.
Old 1 week ago
  #46
Gear Addict
 

[QUOTE=psycho_monkey;14875404]To be honest with you, it makes more sense for most people financially.
Well you do have to add something - you have to deal with a 2nd monitor mixer.
Which is fine if it's a mic or two, but if you've got 16-40 lines live and you're trying to work out what's in record and what isn't...it's not fun. Which is why it's worth investing if you're running a room of any size, and not if you're not.

--------------------------------
Re: the monitor mixer...
If I understand correctly what you are saying... in RME TotalMix you can deal with as much as 6 (if I remember well) separate specialized monitor mixes... (those are routed to my multiple headphone amp) + you could probably cater for more via the ultra flexible routing...
I record up to 28 tracks at a time (I have 28 preamps, it is not the system max capibilty) with no problem recognizing what is in record etc...
My room is big enough for a large band or a small ensemble + booth, and this system is spot on for MY needs...

I think certainly for a LARGE facility it is probably a must especially because of standards and what is expected - I do not question that!.
As for the other 90% of studios which are small to medium I think the RME system is more then enough, feature-wise IMHO.
------------------------------------------------

Again - fine for small numbers of channels, a real pain with proper sessions. A commercial studio needs to be able to cater for anything they can physically fit in.

--------------------------------
Re: direct monitoring
I have to disagree with you there. With the direct monitoring function you can spread any number of channels (depending on your system) on your mixer. Listen to them with no latency and manage cues or whatever you want from an external mixer. In this way you are just using the computer as a tape machine.
Check out the staggering number of channels you can record with an RME MAdifaceXT for example ....196 channels... Should be enough even for a very large orchestra with stereo spot mics on the cowbell too...

------------------------------------------
It's not really about recording *through* plugins more about monitoring with them on. So you can as I've said build a mix without necessarily committing.
-----------------------------

That I get, but like I said it is not part of MY personal workflow. so if it is important to someone, in my opinion, sure, it is still THE great advantage of HDX ..
(together with being a golden standard in studios worldwide)...
Is it worth the 1000s extra? Is it worth the loss of resale value long term?
That is a personal decision...

Also a large studio that can invest in HDX can invest in lots of outboard which I would use any day over any plugin if you want to record committed and with a vibe the artist can bounce from...

Add on top of that RME 100% is problem free, no bugs, no hickups, never!

Best regards!
Old 1 week ago
  #47
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deuc647's Avatar
Ive always sat back and wondered why PT users always come in and defend it like its the god software, then people who dont use PT come in and bash it like its a shyt show software? Does HDX do what other cant do? Yes. Can other sofware do things PT cant do? Yes(folders.....cough). I use HDX exclusively, but again im not tied to it for everything, My MPC is my studio center piece. So I dont need a DAW to produce, record, edit, mix, master can beer, wash clothes. I need to reliably record and mix. For that, HDX was worth the money(not investment), if i was a software producer i would look elsewhere.
Old 1 week ago
  #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deuc647 View Post
Ive always sat back and wondered why PT users always come in and defend it like its the god software, then people who dont use PT come in and bash it like its a shyt show software? Does HDX do what other cant do? Yes. Can other sofware do things PT cant do? Yes(folders.....cough). I use HDX exclusively, but again im not tied to it for everything, My MPC is my studio center piece. So I dont need a DAW to produce, record, edit, mix, master can beer, wash clothes. I need to reliably record and mix. For that, HDX was worth the money(not investment), if i was a software producer i would look elsewhere.
PT is an amazing software! It is awesome. Brilliant.
Having said that:

The fact it is considered by some the ONLY viable option is wrong in my opinion.
I think most businesses are kind of hostages of this "standard" and "compatibility" situation.

Other DAWs are comparable or better on some fronts and the pricing is just not even comparable.
Not much innovation going on in PT and the main selling point, which was, "software and hardware matched and made for each other in heaven creates the only professional and reliable operation" was true 20 years ago. Honestly I see a lot of posts talking about stability problems on some versions and I myself experienced some issues with it. And do we want to discuss the poor MIDI implementation?

So FULL respect to PT (I have a copy) and its tons of happy professional users, but it is kind of a monopoly situation - like Microsoft for offices.

So i am NOT here for bashing (If you have a large commercial facility you NEED to purchase it, if you have a video related facility of any size you need it, if you are used to it because of decades of use you should not look further)
it's a great software, but to let other people know that there are other perfectly viable and professional options out there, which permit you to "record and mix reliably" and can save you money to invest in education for your children, or better still - outboard, mics and instruments....
Old 1 week ago
  #49
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deuc647's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by audioloud View Post
PT is an amazing software! It is awesome. Brilliant.
Having said that:

The fact it is considered by some the ONLY viable option is wrong in my opinion.
I think most businesses are kind of hostages of this "standard" and "compatibility" situation.

Other DAWs are comparable or better on some fronts and the pricing is just not even comparable.
Not much innovation going on in PT and the main selling point, which was, "software and hardware matched and made for each other in heaven creates the only professional and reliable operation" was true 20 years ago. Honestly I see a lot of posts talking about stability problems on some versions and I myself experienced some issues with it. And do we want to discuss the poor MIDI implementation?

So FULL respect to PT (I have a copy) and its tons of happy professional users, but it is kind of a monopoly situation - like Microsoft for offices.

So i am NOT here for bashing (If you have a large commercial facility you NEED to purchase it, if you have a video related facility of any size you need it, if you are used to it because of decades of use you should not look further)
it's a great software, but to let other people know that there are other perfectly viable and professional options out there, which permit you to "record and mix reliably" and can save you money to invest in education for your children, or better still - outboard, mics and instruments....
That is 100% true. Other DAWs let you record and mix reliably, other DAWs take full advantage of the obscene power processors have today. I will admit that I bought HDX to listen to plugins while im recording. Main reason and no other really, that was/is something no other Daw can do RELIABLY. Or should i say with minimal latency, or no perceived latency without having to commit to the sound once its recorded. Again other DAWs do a lot more, but what Pt does well, it does very very well.
Old 1 week ago
  #50
Quote:
Originally Posted by audioloud View Post
--------------------------------
Re: the monitor mixer...
If I understand correctly what you are saying... in RME TotalMix you can deal with as much as 6 (if I remember well) separate specialized monitor mixes... (those are routed to my multiple headphone amp) + you could probably cater for more via the ultra flexible routing...
I record up to 28 tracks at a time (I have 28 preamps, it is not the system max capibilty) with no problem recognizing what is in record etc...
My room is big enough for a large band or a small ensemble + booth, and this system is spot on for MY needs...
I still think you're possibly not quite grasping how much easier HDX makes things. Are you honestly saying that if you've got 28 tracks live, and need to punch in on that, hearing what you've just done and then taking over once the punch in happens - it's just as easy with a cuemixer system? I don't think so...plus you say you have "no problem recognising what is in record" but actually, you can have all 28 lines live, and only 4 of them actually in record. Come to do an overdub and you might only WANT 4 of them in record, but you'd have to then go back to the cue mixer and mute all the others.

You might say "that's no big deal" and it might not be 10k worth of a big deal, but it is an inferior system to just arming a track and going for it.

an HDX rig can do as many monitor mixes as you have outputs for, all without a 2nd cue mixer software, all stored with the session and no messing around.

Quote:
I think certainly for a LARGE facility it is probably a must especially because of standards and what is expected - I do not question that!.
As for the other 90% of studios which are small to medium I think the RME system is more then enough, feature-wise IMHO.
It's fine if you're prepared to work around the limitations yes. And it's fine if you don't know what you're missing out on Personally I wouldn't book a studio for band tracking without an HDX rig now.

Quote:
Re: direct monitoring
I have to disagree with you there. With the direct monitoring function you can spread any number of channels (depending on your system) on your mixer. Listen to them with no latency and manage cues or whatever you want from an external mixer. In this way you are just using the computer as a tape machine.
Yes - but very few engineers actually use the DAW as just a tape machine. And an actual tape machine has a zero latency path, so if you're using it with a LFAC as designed (with ready group/ready tape) functions, it's all integrated and punch ins are seamless (I can't get into explaining this properly right now, but if you're interested read up on how an SSL works with a tape machine).

With a DAW - to get a proper punch in when using a cue mixer, you have to either mute the record tracks as you're punching in or duplicate tracks to get playback. It's all a bit of a fudge. With HDX you just punch in.

Quote:
Check out the staggering number of channels you can record with an RME MAdifaceXT for example ....196 channels... Should be enough even for a very large orchestra with stereo spot mics on the cowbell too...
Sure. And to do it with low latency, you'd need a 196 channel cue mixer too. Help! You can do that on PT too, you just need the investment.


Quote:
That I get, but like I said it is not part of MY personal workflow. so if it is important to someone, in my opinion, sure, it is still THE great advantage of HDX ..
(together with being a golden standard in studios worldwide)...
Is it worth the 1000s extra? Is it worth the loss of resale value long term?
That is a personal decision...
Well - in a commercial studio, resale shouldn't be an issue. A carpenter doesn't worry about the resale value of a hammer, only if it can earn him money day to day. And yes - if it's not part of your workflow, then maybe it doesn't matter. But if you're running a studio, you need to cater to all workflows. If you get an opportunity for a top producer to come into your studio to work, and they want to build a mix as they go...are you going to say no, I don't do that?

Quote:
Also a large studio that can invest in HDX can invest in lots of outboard which I would use any day over any plugin if you want to record committed and with a vibe the artist can bounce from...
Well yes, sometimes. And sometimes you won't, because you're only recording part of a project and don't want to tie the producers hands - in which case you use a plugin post recording so you're in the ballpark without overcommitting. Don't get me wrong, I use lots of processing when recording - but I'll also continue to build the sound on plugins. This whole "if I had great outboard I'd never use plugins!" approach isn't really realistic in the real world.

Quote:
Add on top of that RME 100% is problem free, no bugs, no hickups, never!

Best regards!
Ditto

Quote:
Originally Posted by deuc647 View Post
Ive always sat back and wondered why PT users always come in and defend it like its the god software, then people who dont use PT come in and bash it like its a shyt show software? Does HDX do what other cant do? Yes. Can other sofware do things PT cant do? Yes(folders.....cough). I use HDX exclusively, but again im not tied to it for everything, My MPC is my studio center piece. So I dont need a DAW to produce, record, edit, mix, master can beer, wash clothes. I need to reliably record and mix. For that, HDX was worth the money(not investment), if i was a software producer i would look elsewhere.
I don't think anyone is disagreeing with a lot of that - if I were making EDM or other loop based music, I'd definitely be using Live. Until I needed to record vocals, then I'd be switching back to proper recording software

The thing people constantly miss is that whilst you can work around the latency issues, you can run a cue mixer software etc - PT HDX lets you forget about all of that. For a fast moving high end session, that's essential.

BTW there are folders in PT now And if you ask me, far better implemented than in Logic!
Old 1 week ago
  #51
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
I still think you're possibly not quite grasping how much easier HDX makes things. Are you honestly saying that if you've got 28 tracks live, and need to punch in on that, hearing what you've just done and then taking over once the punch in happens - it's just as easy with a cuemixer system? I don't think so...plus you say you have "no problem recognising what is in record" but actually, you can have all 28 lines live, and only 4 of them actually in record. Come to do an overdub and you might only WANT 4 of them in record, but you'd have to then go back to the cue mixer and mute all the others.
Yes you can. You punch in and out and play by simply using aux outs instead of direct out. I'm not going to get in detail. But you can.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
It's fine if you're prepared to work around the limitations yes. And it's fine if you don't know what you're missing out on Personally I wouldn't book a studio for band tracking without an HDX rig now.

Sure I have no doubt. As an engineer used to what you like, surely not, that I considered and respect.
But as a band/artist you shouldn't care much, as long as there are no hickups and the musicians can hear themselves well and enjoy the vibe without interruptions (and the results are great obvs)...
Personally (and I believe many musicians), I would prefer to track in a place with even slightly more nice mics or pre amps and outboard then one "with HDX" and less interesting stuff.
Obviously both would be cool, but it's not always possible.
For some studios, the mid to small, there has to be a trade off somewhere, on something...
Your resale value reasoning too makes sense, an investment is an investment.
I don't think I will ever get even part of my money back for any of my many many plugins, so I understand that argument pretty well.
But it sure is steep. The price ratio between old and new Digidesign/Avid hardware is pretty noticeable.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post

Well yes, sometimes. And sometimes you won't, because you're only recording part of a project and don't want to tie the producers hands - in which case you use a plugin post recording so you're in the ballpark without overcommitting. Don't get me wrong, I use lots of processing when recording - but I'll also continue to build the sound on plugins. This whole "if I had great outboard I'd never use plugins!" approach isn't really realistic in the real world.
-----------------------------------------

I'm not one of those, no problem, love plugins
My reasoning, and my approach is that is the processing, when in plugin form, is something that can be done later (in the same exact way, save presets etc..) so in my head it works better to lean on the hardware coming in, making a few decisions down the way, and then plugins.... it is infinity-land.
(Unless I'm asked for a specific sound like Autotune or something else then I still have a way of doing that)
Anyhow, any way is perfectly valid I don't question that, it's actually really cool being able to do that seamlessly if you want to.


So, I generally agree with what you are saying and that HDX is the pinnacle in the "monitoring field" (sounds silly but it's the only definition I'm came up with, sorry) which must make sessions easier and that this single function might be worth the investment for many etc... Absolutely, it is one great and effective selling point.
But I also think that, there are numerous ways that cirumnavigate these "hurdles" with relative ease and no real "problems" creating as a result an equally enjoyable recording experience.
As for most of of the other DAW functions, they are on the same level and often superior on other systems.

What you were saying about what is expected from a studio is also surely 100% valid and is connected to the "standard" matter I was referring to in my previous post.
That is someone every studio owner, large and small, should decide and be certainly aware of, especially in theses changing times for the whole industry.

All the very best !



.
Old 1 week ago
  #52
Quote:
Originally Posted by audioloud View Post
Yes you can. You punch in and out and play by simply using aux outs instead of direct out. I'm not going to get in detail. But you can.

---------------------------------------



Sure I have no doubt. As an engineer used to what you like, surely not, that I considered and respect.
But as a band/artist you shouldn't care much, as long as there are no hickups and the musicians can hear themselves well and enjoy the vibe without interruptions (and the results are great obvs)...
Personally (and I believe many musicians), I would prefer to track in a place with even slightly more nice mics or pre amps and outboard then one "with HDX" and less interesting stuff.
Obviously both would be cool, but it's not always possible.
For some studios, the mid to small, there has to be a trade off somewhere, on something...
Your resale value reasoning too makes sense, an investment is an investment.
I don't think I will ever get even part of my money back for any of my many many plugins, so I understand that argument pretty well.
But it sure is steep. The price ratio between old and new Digidesign/Avid hardware is pretty noticeable.
----------------------------------------


-----------------------------------------

I'm not one of those, no problem, love plugins
My reasoning, and my approach is that is the processing, when in plugin form, is something that can be done later (in the same exact way, save presets etc..) so in my head it works better to lean on the hardware coming in, making a few decisions down the way, and then plugins.... it is infinity-land.
(Unless I'm asked for a specific sound like Autotune or something else then I still have a way of doing that)
Anyhow, any way is perfectly valid I don't question that, it's actually really cool being able to do that seamlessly if you want to.


So, I generally agree with what you are saying and that HDX is the pinnacle in the "monitoring field" (sounds silly but it's the only definition I'm came up with, sorry) which must make sessions easier and that this single function might be worth the investment for many etc... Absolutely, it is one great and effective selling point.
But I also think that, there are numerous ways that cirumnavigate these "hurdles" with relative ease and no real "problems" creating as a result an equally enjoyable recording experience.
As for most of of the other DAW functions, they are on the same level and often superior on other systems.

What you were saying about what is expected from a studio is also surely 100% valid and is connected to the "standard" matter I was referring to in my previous post.
That is someone every studio owner, large and small, should decide and be certainly aware of, especially in theses changing times for the whole industry.

All the very best !



.
I just feel that maybe you should spend some time using a rig so you know exactly what I'm talking about. It's far more than "monitoring". It's workflow.

Workarounds generally take more time, make things less simple, and slow things up. Don't forget - you can generally work that same way with HDX rigs as well if you want to. But you also have the option to work in a slicker way.

I get what you're saying about alternate ways to monitor punch ins and stuff. But it's nothing like as simple or clear. But you're also not paying a premium for that.
Old 1 week ago
  #53
Lives for gear
 
deuc647's Avatar
Ya know what PM, I think the "dont have to think about it" comment is probably one of the reasons i got it. Actually that, recording thru plugins, and the controllers are all the reasons i got it. I turn it on, loads everything up, select my preconfigured setting(different consoles), then record Now Im gonna take a big loss selling my BLA modded HD I/O to get the merging ADA8P, but that is my dream converter, so its a must sometime this year
Old 1 week ago
  #54
Quote:
Originally Posted by deuc647 View Post
Ya know what PM, I think the "dont have to think about it" comment is probably one of the reasons i got it. Actually that, recording thru plugins, and the controllers are all the reasons i got it. I turn it on, loads everything up, select my preconfigured setting(different consoles), then record Now Im gonna take a big loss selling my BLA modded HD I/O to get the merging ADA8P, but that is my dream converter, so its a must sometime this year
Exactly. If you've never used the system in anger, you might not get why it just works; but if you have, you don't generally want to go back.
Old 1 week ago
  #55
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
With a DAW - to get a proper punch in when using a cue mixer, you have to either mute the record tracks as you're punching in or duplicate tracks to get playback. It's all a bit of a fudge. With HDX you just punch in.
To be fair, LLM or Muteomatic can handle that part when using a separate monitor mix (is there an option for Logic here?).

For me, the advantage of the old TDM rig, and HDX as well, sortof melted away with the idea of a pure tracking phase and pure mixing phase, combined with native only plugins that everyone wants to use. Once we are in overdub/punch mode, and have a ton of native plugins in the session- having to swap the native plugins back to often lesser DSP plugs (with different settings), and change routings to avoid downstream native on busses etc was, to me, as much of a compromise as other alternatives.

HDX added to this with many of the DSP plugins I would want to use being 30+ samples of latency...4 of those in series in a session (accounting for busses etc) and the RTL is the same as using a 64 sample buffer and monitoring with native (doable on a fast computer).

I'm not saying you're wrong by any means, but for someone who isn't familiar with HDX, they should know that there are some caveats to making it all work the way you describe here.

Also FWIW, I'm really loving the workflow with the Dal Livemix doing direct monitoring, while I don't have HDX here, I have fast enough computers that initial tracking sessions at the 32 sample buffer (esp in PT 2020) is a non-issue. Comparing the monitor-through-daw workflow to the direct-foldback through the Livemix, while both have pro's and con's, the pro's of doing it direct through the Dal are outweighing cons for me. I have some tracking sessions with guest engineers coming up soon, it will be interesting to see what they think...
Old 6 days ago
  #56
Lives for gear
 
deuc647's Avatar
RyanC, your computer is fast enough and im on a gen1 sandybridge

Probably need to move up to something else at some point.
Old 6 days ago
  #57
Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanC View Post
To be fair, LLM or Muteomatic can handle that part when using a separate monitor mix (is there an option for Logic here?).

For me, the advantage of the old TDM rig, and HDX as well, sortof melted away with the idea of a pure tracking phase and pure mixing phase, combined with native only plugins that everyone wants to use. Once we are in overdub/punch mode, and have a ton of native plugins in the session- having to swap the native plugins back to often lesser DSP plugs (with different settings), and change routings to avoid downstream native on busses etc was, to me, as much of a compromise as other alternatives.

HDX added to this with many of the DSP plugins I would want to use being 30+ samples of latency...4 of those in series in a session (accounting for busses etc) and the RTL is the same as using a 64 sample buffer and monitoring with native (doable on a fast computer).

I'm not saying you're wrong by any means, but for someone who isn't familiar with HDX, they should know that there are some caveats to making it all work the way you describe here.

Also FWIW, I'm really loving the workflow with the Dal Livemix doing direct monitoring, while I don't have HDX here, I have fast enough computers that initial tracking sessions at the 32 sample buffer (esp in PT 2020) is a non-issue. Comparing the monitor-through-daw workflow to the direct-foldback through the Livemix, while both have pro's and con's, the pro's of doing it direct through the Dal are outweighing cons for me. I have some tracking sessions with guest engineers coming up soon, it will be interesting to see what they think...
Yeah I get that. Mutematic doesn’t work in punch mode in that way does it though? Or is there a way to make it work just on actual record, not playback...I only use it for auto talkback mute!

Another thing is since I discovered plugin alliance have a lot of dsp plugins, it changes things a little back to the tdm workflow.

The other aspect is I can leave my buffer set high and use as many native plugs on non record channels without worrying about processing issues.

I must confess freeze in PT makes a difference in a way, but it’s still slower. All these things are just work arounds, but some are more inconvenient than others!
Old 6 days ago
  #58
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
Yeah I get that. Mutematic doesn’t work in punch mode in that way does it though?
VST3 yes, it has mute on record only as an option. VST2, AAX and AU no. The format has to tell the plugin it's in record.

In the analog realm the punchlight relay works with HUI or MC (HUI in PT works alongside eucontrol). I use it for both TB and LB, the TB mic mutes on playback and record, the LB (mult of artist's mic) mutes only on record. This way you can hear the LB mic even when tracks aren't armed or input monitored or daw even open. This would be pretty clumsy to try to use for auto-muting for a whole band tracking session though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
Another thing is since I discovered plugin alliance have a lot of dsp plugins, it changes things a little back to the tdm workflow.
PI are all around 30-40 samples no? Not that I have a problem with that...but it's enough to get out of the sub 1ms range and also where 32 and even 64 sample buffers can compete latency wise (where a few plugins are in series in the monitor chain). For me even 128 samples is fine for most things as long as there isn't extra latency...I do get the value of having the monitoring be lower though, because in a session it isn't always easy to track down where the extra latency is coming from. I tested a Line 6 Helix pedal that was 6ms on it's own.

To me it's all kinda one compromise or the other...Even with tape, we couldn't actually monitor the sound of the tape while tracking without a lot of latency. Which was a pain if you wanted to hit it hard. Ironically, you can do this better with tape emu plugins...for better or worse sonically.

Last edited by RyanC; 6 days ago at 01:13 PM..
Old 4 days ago
  #59
Motown legend
 
Bob Olhsson's Avatar
 

Sample-count is only relative latency between plug-ins. Actual latency involves the entire signal path, and this is where the advantage of HDX lies.

That said, the absolute best is zero latency using an analog monitor mixer. I'm amazed more people don't just do this.
Old 4 days ago
  #60
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Olhsson View Post
Sample-count is only relative latency between plug-ins. Actual latency involves the entire signal path, and this is where the advantage of HDX lies.
Well of course, it's all cumulative. But if you have AAX-DSP plugins that add 30-40 samples per plugin, and their native equivalents add 0 samples per plugin- (which is the case with many plugin alliance, softube etc) then there is a point where the same session can actually perform as good or better with native.

Different daws and native hardware have various additional buffers though, that's why I recommended testing with Room EQ wizard (or function generator and scope). REW is free and easy to use for this (running on a laptop etc).
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