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UAD 2 PCIe card advantages??? Saturation Plugins
Old 6th August 2015
  #1
215526
Guest
UAD 2 PCIe card advantages???

Hi,

I am getting back into the UAD emulation plugins and plan on purchasing a UAD-2 PCIe quad card for my 2009-10 Mac Pro very soon. This is my first Mac Pro and my first experience with using a PCIe card. I used to own and use the UAD firewire satellite in conjunction with a MacBook Pro but sold both units awhile ago. Are there any advantages to using a PCIe card over the UAD satellite units?

Also, I am curious as to whether Universal Audio offers a UAD-2 plugin that simulates a console(s)? Similar to what Slate Digital offers with the VCC, or, what Waves offers with the NLS?

Thanks.
Old 6th August 2015
  #2
Quote:
Originally Posted by deckard1 View Post
Hi,

I am getting back into the UAD emulation plugins and plan on purchasing a UAD-2 PCIe quad card for my 2009-10 Mac Pro very soon. This is my first Mac Pro and my first experience with using a PCIe card. I used to own and use the UAD firewire satellite in conjunction with a MacBook Pro but sold both units awhile ago. Are there any advantages to using a PCIe card over the UAD satellite units?

Also, I am curious as to whether Universal Audio offers a UAD-2 plugin that simulates a console(s)? Similar to what Slate Digital offers with the VCC, or, what Waves offers with the NLS?

Thanks.
Hi.

I don't think it matters ether way.

I have a UAD 2 quad card. I used it in a 2010 mac pro until I moved to a new macbook pro.

With the macbook, I purchased a PCI e chassis with a thunderbolt connection for the UAD card. It works fine with no issues other than I wish it had more DSP power.

UAD doesn't do console emulation yet. I hate to think what that would do to my limited DSP power.
Old 6th August 2015
  #3
Lives for gear
PCIe is a breeze, they just snap in. I'm no PC geek and installing it and getting set up was easy, and that was like a over decade ago, when I knew much less than I know now.

With careful planning, you still have enough DSP to get the important tracks treated, even some of the older MK1 plugins have some use.

On a bounced pre-master you really have the flexibility to utilize bigger chains of the MKII plugins.

I'd say that it is absolutely an advantage, and I'm pretty sure you can get one cheap.

That said, I am not sure if I will go any beyond the UAD2, I have found a lot of cost effective options lately, and fighting with what seems to be more and more DSP consumption with the newer items, with no plans in sight to relieve some of the smaller guys like me... make me want to show some support elsewhere with my wallet going forward. What really got me was the DSP on the 88RSMKII. As an old user, I used that strip quite a bit, you could spread it across the mix (leaving personal preference out of the discussion) The MKII, would only allow me a few instances. To me thats a game changer, and changes the reason why I was using UAD. To spare the native CPU. Nowadays I am using more native to allow room for the UAD2.
Old 6th August 2015
  #4
Lives for gear
 
Billy Buck's Avatar
 

From a performance aspect, if you have a choice always go with PCIe over FW. The only advantage FW has over PCIe is portability. UAD advantages of using PCIe over FW:

1) First and foremost no more bothersome firewire issues to deal with. There is no "Firewire" tab on the UAD Control Panel. No need to set and watch buffer settings and such. No need to deal with FW related buffer issues or errors. PCIe just works with no need for further user input or tweaking.

2) There is no extra 512 sample per plug-in latency added when using the UAD plug-ins from your DAW app. Since you are using low latency PCIe DSP drivers and not FW DSP drivers with added buffers.

3) You are not limited by FW bandwidth to how many plug-in instances you can enable. With PCIe you can use all of your available DSP.

4) LiveTrack mode is available on UAD plug-ins enabled from the DAW (only PCIe). LT mode is not available with FW devices because of the added 512 samples per plug-in instance.

5) Native CPU usage (for GUI & I/O processing) when using PCIe DSP drivers and UAD plug-ins are lower and much more stable, especially at lower buffer latencies. Of course, all DSP processing is still done from the UAD devices.


Cheers,

Billy Buck
Old 6th August 2015
  #5
215526
Guest
Thanks for all of the excellent responses!

What drove me absolutely crazy with the Firewire satellite unit I once owned was I couldn't use the plugins in real-time due to the latency (as mentioned in a previous post). Sounds like with PCIe this is not a problem.

I already have a 'blank-load' of UAD-2 plugins so I just need the PCIe card, essentially. I can't afford a new PCIe quad card at the moment, but, I found a used UAD-2 PCIe quad card (no plugins included) on Craigslist here in Los Angeles for $400. Is this a good deal...assuming the card has no issues?

Thanks.
Old 6th August 2015
  #6
Lives for gear
I would personally try to shave $100-150 off of a UAD with no plugins, but it's not a bad deal imo
Old 6th August 2015
  #7
Lives for gear
 
Billy Buck's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by deckard1 View Post
I already have a 'blank-load' of UAD-2 plugins so I just need the PCIe card, essentially. I can't afford a new PCIe quad card at the moment, but, I found a used UAD-2 PCIe quad card (no plugins included) on Craigslist here in Los Angeles for $400. Is this a good deal...assuming the card has no issues?

Thanks.
Yeah $400 for a used Quad card is a good deal. Make sure to have the seller make the proper transfer to your UA account. Also, make sure to have it placed in the same hardware "Group" that your existing plug-in licenses are in so you can share those licenses. Then you can refresh the authorizations from your account to the card via the UAD Control Panels "Plug-Ins" tab. You can always make a call to UA support to verify the card gets placed in the correct hardware group, as they are the only ones that can make any changes after the fact.

Cheers,

Billy Buck
Old 6th August 2015
  #8
Lives for gear
Sorry I thought you meant DUO.
Hell yeah thats a great deal as said above!
Old 6th August 2015
  #9
Lives for gear
 
Solidtrax's Avatar
I would certainly buy an used UAD-2 QUAD for $400 (if I knew the seller was legit that is). The lowest price I saw in the past couple of months (in Holland) was €550 and a few hours later it was sold.
Old 6th August 2015
  #10
Gear Addict
 
SV7107's Avatar
That is a crazy price! Here in UK they are approx £680 / $1000 brand new, not really much better 2nd hand either :(

They work great though, no hassle. Install the software first, switch off and install the cards, start up - no problems.
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