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HD set-up, where to start?
Old 8th September 2011
  #1
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HD set-up, where to start?

Hey all, first off, thanks to everyone on gearslutz who have saved me over the years by answering all my questions with the search button. Now onto a specific question that I can't find a concrete answer to.


I am currently setting up a professional mixing/recording studio. Just to give my background, I've been recording and producing on an Mbox2 via LE for the past four years. Now I'm trying to create a workstation on my quad core mac pro (1,1) but can't figure out which route to take or why.

I purchased a Control 24. Now I am looking into purchasing either a HD Native card (which seems the cheaper more logical solution) or a HD2 pci-e system. In terms of longetivity, I expect to eventually record bands (in about a year), but for now, I will be recording and mixing mainly vocals and voice-overs.

Which is the best option? I have been told to get the HD Native and a Symphony and a Big Ben... while others tell me to get the HD2 pci-e TDM. I have been reading through every possible thread on the HD Native vs HD TDM for the past week and still have absolutely no idea what to do considering the arguments I've been reading for both sides.

I obviously don't want to spend more than I should, but am willing to go over budget in order to save more in the long-run rather than have to upgrade in a year. Any input would be dearly appreciated.
Old 10th September 2011
  #2
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any help would be appreciated. thanks.
Old 10th September 2011
  #3
The HDNative is how I would go. TDM systems are great, but if the cards features fits your needs it will be a great option for you. I would not recommend the purchase of a Big Ben for any sonic reason, with an Apogee Symphony.
Old 10th September 2011
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roc Mixwell View Post
The HDNative is how I would go. TDM systems are great, but if the cards features fits your needs it will be a great option for you. I would not recommend the purchase of a Big Ben for any sonic reason, with an Apogee Symphony.
Thanks a bunch. So essentially all I would need is the HD Native with my Control 24 in order to comfortably run and track on Pro Tools HD 9? Just want to make sure before I make the purchase. Thanks again.
Old 11th September 2011
  #5
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bump (before I make the purchase).
Old 11th September 2011
  #6
Quote:
Originally Posted by thefilmmaking View Post
Thanks a bunch. So essentially all I would need is the HD Native with my Control 24 in order to comfortably run and track on Pro Tools HD 9? Just want to make sure before I make the purchase. Thanks again.
You would need an HD native and an HD-compatible interface - the control 24 is not an interface!

Cheapest interface is a 2nd hand 96io, but I'd go for at least a 192. Ideally one of the new HD interfaces.
Old 12th September 2011
  #7
WDM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thefilmmaking View Post
Thanks a bunch. So essentially all I would need is the HD Native with my Control 24 in order to comfortably run and track on Pro Tools HD 9? Just want to make sure before I make the purchase. Thanks again.
I would look at the horizon of few years from now for your studio, trying to see how many hardware components you'll want to have in the nearest future and it's gonna be connected to your HD system.

HD Native seems to be limited on the number of IO (64).
It may seem a lot from the beginning, but it's not really if you'll want to connect analog console later?

I may be wrong, but to me, HD Native fits right in between Protools LE and Protools HD3. The short PCI-E card should fit in almost any computer which has free PCI-E slot. New HD omni interface looks like a nice option for people who wants to have small and convenient HD rig at home.

So, if I would want to upgrade my home Protools LE rig to HD, it seems to be the right choice and price... and it's the latest on the market.

But, if I would build a commercial studio, I don't know ... I would go probably with used HD3 rig and I'll look for "dirt cheap" 192 IO boxes.

But once again... that's just me and I may be wrong
Old 12th September 2011
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
You would need an HD native and an HD-compatible interface - the control 24 is not an interface!

Cheapest interface is a 2nd hand 96io, but I'd go for at least a 192. Ideally one of the new HD interfaces.
Thank you, and would I need one (or more?) analogue or digital 192? I apologize for the naive questions, I just haven't been getting solid answers from the engineers I've asked in person.
Old 12th September 2011
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WDM View Post
But, if I would build a commercial studio, I don't know ... I would go probably with used HD3 rig and I'll look for "dirt cheap" 192 IO boxes.
I want to be "future-proof" persay, but I can get a used Native HD card for 2500 vs an HD3 rig at 6000... is the cost difference worth it considering the HD3 may become "outdated" or am I making an incorrect assumption? Thanks again for the input.
Old 12th September 2011
  #10
Quote:
Originally Posted by thefilmmaking View Post
Thank you, and would I need one (or more?) analogue or digital 192? I apologize for the naive questions, I just haven't been getting solid answers from the engineers I've asked in person.
You'd need one.

If you already have converters, you could use a digital 192, and connect them via AES or lightpipe (AES is the "pro" solution).

If not, you need one with AD/DA converters, so the analogue model.

Assuming you're happy with 8i/o, you only need 1 192. If you want more outs OR more ins, you can fit an extra analogue board, or add external converters (each 192 has 16io, the 192 has 8io analogue plus 8io digital in it's basic config, the 192digi has 16io on aes).
Old 12th September 2011
  #11
Go on eBay and purchase a used HD2 PCIe system and get a Lynx Aurora 16 with the LT-HD card (or two of them if you need more i/o). No "master clock" required and tons of fantastic sounding i/o without any need for manual delay compensation.

Btw, even with the Symphony you don't need a master clock. As long as you have great conversion with a well designed internal PLL (i.e. internal clock), there is no need for an external master clock unless you need pull up/down functionality or have an extensive amount of outboard digital gear that you need to keep in sync.
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