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Ensoniq Paris vs TDM Digidesign, vs... something else? Recorders, Players & Tape Machines
Old 25th February 2014
  #31
Here for the gear
Hi,
I also think a used 24 I/O is the way to go.. It works in PC and Apple Computers, plus it is still supported by the manufacturer, which means there are drivers available for whatever System you wanna go..

As an alternative you could go with older Motu 2408, the last MK II i bought was 250 Euro, incl. a PCI 324. You could expand that with cheap converters like the older creamware A16, the last one I have seen on sale was 200 Euro, it has 16 channels i/o via ADAT in 16 bit.

I used to have a RME Digi 9652 PCI card, it offers 3 pairs of ADAT i/o, older cards like that go for about 150 Euro. You also need converters with that.

I personally would go with a common brand like RME or Motu for a budget solution because of the availibility of good drivers, and these 2 brands definitely do that.

Just my 2 cent,

cheers,
Lucky
Old 25th February 2014
  #32
Tui
Gear Guru
 
Tui's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrUmSensitive View Post
C'mon, are the converters really THAT bad?!
Yes. Atrocious. I'd rather use a cassette tape recorder, no kidding.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrUmSensitive View Post
We are talking about the D/A converters, right?
DA and AD.
Old 28th February 2014
  #33
A component based future proof approach to your enquiry

Lets break this down. Here are my considerations.

You cannot have everything, there must be some priorities, if you have a limited budget.

What's the most important thing to you:

1. 24 channel outputs.

2. Driver and application stability.

3. Audio quality of outputs and sampling rate.

4. Compatibility with current or recent operating systems

I assume that you have limited budget. I also assume that driver stability is very important - otherwise you will not get anything done. I assume that you still want to use relatively recent operating systems such as Windows7.

I therefore assume that we may compromise slightly on the audio quality. Nevetheless I caveat this with the fact that most multi channel interfaces manufactured anytime after year 2000 should have decent audio quality. I assume that 44khz/24bit should be adequate.

A. So what's the answer to compatibility with current or recent operating systems, which is also the answer to :

Choose equipment from an interface provider, which has a good reputation for excellent support, drivers and maintaining these drivers for new operating systems. Considering that you do not have the funds for the latest Pro-Tools HDX interfaces, for 24 tracks and above of output, the cost effective solution would be to get a PCI or USB interface from RME, which has support for multiple ADAT outputs.

B. If you couple this interface with a number of Behringer ADAT interfaces such as the ADA8000, 1 for each of 8 outputs, i.e 3 of these devices gives you 24 tracks. You have a future proof solution which will provide acceptable audio quality, for most purposes.

This will provide a flexible - multi-component solution that is flexible, and these components will remain useful for quite a long time to come.

The Behringer ADAT (DA/AD) converter will remain a very useful device for a long time to come, and you can selectively upgrade to higher quality devices on one or more ADAT ports, incrementally as your quality needs change.

In my opinion this should be a good future proof solution for most needs.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #34
Gear Addict
 

Presonus FireStudio lightpipe (or M-Audio ProFire Lightbridge) + 4x Behringer ADA8000 will do the job for a reasonable price.
Old 2nd March 2014
  #35
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kodebode View Post
Lets break this down. Here are my considerations.

You cannot have everything, there must be some priorities, if you have a limited budget.

What's the most important thing to you:

1. 24 channel outputs.

2. Driver and application stability.

3. Audio quality of outputs and sampling rate.

4. Compatibility with current or recent operating systems

I assume that you have limited budget. I also assume that driver stability is very important - otherwise you will not get anything done. I assume that you still want to use relatively recent operating systems such as Windows7.

I therefore assume that we may compromise slightly on the audio quality. Nevetheless I caveat this with the fact that most multi channel interfaces manufactured anytime after year 2000 should have decent audio quality. I assume that 44khz/24bit should be adequate.

A. So what's the answer to compatibility with current or recent operating systems, which is also the answer to :

Choose equipment from an interface provider, which has a good reputation for excellent support, drivers and maintaining these drivers for new operating systems. Considering that you do not have the funds for the latest Pro-Tools HDX interfaces, for 24 tracks and above of output, the cost effective solution would be to get a PCI or USB interface from RME, which has support for multiple ADAT outputs.

B. If you couple this interface with a number of Behringer ADAT interfaces such as the ADA8000, 1 for each of 8 outputs, i.e 3 of these devices gives you 24 tracks. You have a future proof solution which will provide acceptable audio quality, for most purposes.

This will provide a flexible - multi-component solution that is flexible, and these components will remain useful for quite a long time to come.

The Behringer ADAT (DA/AD) converter will remain a very useful device for a long time to come, and you can selectively upgrade to higher quality devices on one or more ADAT ports, incrementally as your quality needs change.

In my opinion this should be a good future proof solution for most needs.
Further to what he said... You can find RME HDSP 9652 cards and ADA8000 converters on ebay for a very decent price, coming in well under a $1000 budget for the lot.
Old 6th March 2014
  #36
Lives for gear
 
Will The Weirdo's Avatar
Wow, still so much PARIS negativity after all these years, lol.
I still run my PARIS system on my Win 7x64, yes x64 and it runs great. It is still the fastest at recording of any DAW I've used, and I've used almost everything. I can record for hours without ever stopping once with PARIS. I mix in Studio One theses days because of Nebula but I still love PARIS. It still sounds good. FWIW, you should be able to get that whole PARIS rig for around $500 these days. Don't get that old Pro Tools rig, it has a bad clock in it and they were just bad sounding. The MOTU will need the BLA mod to come close to the PARIS quality, if you can't make good sounding records in PARIS, it's not PARIS at fault.

I could still mix today on PARIS if I had too, and the results would be great. 3 of these were mixed in PARIS last year..... SoMeTHinG RaNdoM
I use a very modern computer with PCI slots for the cards. I do understand PARIS is old and people are questioning it, but it will sound better than any of the other options listed here. Setup is super easy now(with the new installer), the newsgroup is still there for questions & feel free to PM me with any questions. I have plenty of PARIS info on a drive if you need it.

The PARIS Forums: Welcome to the forum
Old 6th March 2014
  #37
Lives for gear
 
Will The Weirdo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Hodgson View Post
Further to what he said... You can find RME HDSP 9652 cards and ADA8000 converters on ebay for a very decent price, coming in well under a $1000 budget for the lot.
This is IMHO the only other real option other than PARIS, sound quality wise. I'm not sure if he'll stay under $1000 in the end with cables and software.
Old 26th March 2014
  #38
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Will The Weirdo View Post
This is IMHO the only other real option other than PARIS, sound quality wise. I'm not sure if he'll stay under $1000 in the end with cables and software.
And I can't. Cables would cost at least another 200€. So Behringer (because of the XLR outputs) is out of the question, unfortunately (because I already have 6 multicore snakes with balanced jack connectors.

Some of you guys somewhat missed the point. My problem is not a "tight budget," but the gear I already have which is not working as advertised and I was looking for a, well, as painless as can be, solution to the problem.

a) I cannot upgrade to a computer without parallel ports and windows7 because of the MOTU Miditimepiece AV parallel interfaces.

b) I not only hate plug-ins and ITB mixing, I would feel genuinely stupid for buying all these gear only to work ITB on Reason like I did in 1999 when I started, or on a Amiga-based Scream Tracker back in the 80's. I wanted a proper studio and I got one. Unfortunately, this is what you get when you buy used gear: uncertainty.

c) WHY, for the love of Christ, can't I make these WaMi Racks work?! :( I don't know how to make them work in a single system, word clock or otherwise, although they work perfectly fine on their own. I've already built 8 computers - to no avail, I am actually thinking about trying to run 4 computers at once, synced with system link! A friend of mine told me I should word clock the output of my MOTU Miditimepiece AV to the first WaMi and then cascade the wordclock ins and outs accordingly (out 1 to in 2, out 2 to in 3, out 4 to in 4). Honestly, I am skeptical. I tried connecting three WaMis to the first one in a row with wordclock cables - and it didn't work. Actually, I think the computer doesn't think WaMi 1 is the one I think is 1. I think that it gets confused during installation, somehow, and they can't sync, while the driver unfortunately doesn't allow me find out which one is which. :/

d) I think Paris would be a great thing, but as it turns out, the European Paris owners are pretty attached to their systems so they ask for a 100€ per part (which amounts to well over 800€ for a setup with 8 ins and 32 outs), while the American ones are too far away so shipping would kill me financially.

The way I see it, and since there is no way for me to even sell some of my gear and I don't have a job to make some money and buy something else, I am pretty much stuck in a dead end.

Oh, I also bought from ebay another PCI card for my WaMis, hoping it would help. Surprise surprise, this one was faulty, it doesn't even connect to the rack part. I paid 50$ for it, and 25$ shipping, so now to pay another 25$ to get 50$ sounds stupid. The guy feels really bad the card does not work (it installs just fine, as he assured me, but unfortunately it doesn't communicate with the rack part) and he is ready to help however he can, but I don't see what he can do, at this point.

Being somewhat superstitious, at this point I am afraid to buy another used WaMi, although there is one for sale for 125$ "or best offer," because with shipping it would be 205$ and I am still not sure it would do any good. It probably wouldn't. :/

Thanks or your help, guys, much appreciate it, but I must conclude there is no solution. I have to stumble over all this gear in my room when I walk around, and wait for better times to actually be able to use it. :(
Old 26th March 2014
  #39
Lives for gear
 
ChrisLudwig's Avatar
 

Hi ,
Quote:
And I can't. Cables would cost at least another 200€. So Behringer (because of the XLR outputs) is out of the question, unfortunately (because I already have 6 multicore snakes with balanced jack connectors.

Some of you guys somewhat missed the point. My problem is not a "tight budget," but the gear I already have which is not working as advertised and I was looking for a, well, as painless as can be, solution to the problem.
You are constantly wasting money on gear that will not do what you are trying to do.
Have you at least tried to see what the maximum number of Wami racks work?
If no more than one then it is a lost cause and you wasted lots of money on gear that doe snot work as advertised. I can almost guarantee that They never tested more than a 3 card setup. Most likely it is something that never worked any place other than on paper.

I have never heard of any one using more than one of them reliably. I seen some people years ago getting up to 3 running but never reliably for a long time.

Paris hardware used state of the art ADDA and clock design in 1998.....
It is not as good ADDA or clock wise that any current ADDA available Most $100 2 ch sound cards have better quality converter design at this point.

What made Paris sound good was the software's audio engine that had analog console and tape simulation built into the audio engine.
But it also was a closed and dead end system when it came to development. It will not work with most any current VST plugin correctly and is only low latency when using its own built in plugins.
It has zero usable MIDi support and in version 3.0 you will need to disable the MIDI functions other than time code sync all together if you want it to be stable.

My only advice at this point if you want to stop spending money is to try to get 2 or 3 of the Wami Racks working together and give up on the 4.

There is absolutely nothing preventing you from running a commercial studio with even just one Wami rack.

There is absolutely nothing preventing from creating professional commercial ITB or OTB mixes using even just the one Wami rack.

Thanks Chris
Old 26th March 2014
  #40
Lives for gear
 
madehumble's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrUmSensitive View Post
I have a G4 quicksilver, tiger, dual processors 1.2GHz, 1.5GB ram, ZIP drive, 2 HD 120GB, USB2.0 PCI card, etc. It would be great with such a setup. C'mon, are the converters really THAT bad?! :( We are talking about the D/A converters, right?


What about this thing:
Marian Performance Line: Trace Out A16 S
Yes they are. You have way better options under 1k. Those old pieces of gear had their day. Now you can get better sounding converters today for less money.
Old 26th March 2014
  #41
Lives for gear
 
Dysanfel's Avatar
I miss my Paris system. It sounded amazing. For the time it was truly revolutionary. I don't miss Windows98
Old 26th March 2014
  #42
Lives for gear
 
Will The Weirdo's Avatar
I'm currently running PARIS under Win 7x64 and it flies, drivers came out last year. It's my tracking rig these days.
Old 27th March 2014
  #43
ITB mixing has come along way since 1999 and is there not a replacement that does the same as the midi timepiece that works over USB?
Old 17th August 2014
  #44
Lives for gear
 
Will The Weirdo's Avatar
DrUmSensitive, what did you end up getting?
Old 26th October 2014
  #45
Lives for gear
 
Will The Weirdo's Avatar
PARIS update:
Mike Audit has been working on ASIO drivers for PARIS. His hard work has me running PARIS hardware with Reaper, Studio One, Wavelab, FL Studio, Ableton Live and he has recently been using PARIS hardware with PT 10. The future is looking good for all the old PARIS hardware sitting around.
Old 22nd December 2016
  #46
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucky View Post
Hi,
I also think a used 24 I/O is the way to go.. It works in PC and Apple Computers, plus it is still supported by the manufacturer, which means there are drivers available for whatever System you wanna go..

As an alternative you could go with older Motu 2408, the last MK II i bought was 250 Euro, incl. a PCI 324. You could expand that with cheap converters like the older creamware A16, the last one I have seen on sale was 200 Euro, it has 16 channels i/o via ADAT in 16 bit.

I used to have a RME Digi 9652 PCI card, it offers 3 pairs of ADAT i/o, older cards like that go for about 150 Euro. You also need converters with that.

I personally would go with a common brand like RME or Motu for a budget solution because of the availibility of good drivers, and these 2 brands definitely do that.

Just my 2 cent,

cheers,
Lucky
In the end, that´s exactly what I did! And I am very satisfied. I had all the luck in the world, managed to sell my WaMis for a reasonable price, managed to get the 24i/o, 2408mk1 and mk2, 1204 and the Creamware A16 Ultra, as well as the Mackie 24 channel Expander for my board - ALL very, very cheap! Now, except for huge electricity issues which I will eventually sort out - my system works perfectly.

I do miss the WaMis, though, because they were easy to work with, extremely uncomplicated and in the end - amazing sound AND midi. But they just can´t work together in one system, the tech guy at ESI told me the drivers were never developed for such use because the product was discontinued before that. :(

I thank you all for your help and good advices, you brought me a lot of luck in finding new gear (at least I like to think so) and you showed me the way out from a very dark tunnel. You guys are the best!!!

Last edited by DrUmSensitive; 22nd December 2016 at 11:22 PM.. Reason: writing on a german keyboard so some upper case characters emerged.
Old 16th January 2019
  #47
Lives for gear
 
jjdpro's Avatar
 

Smile

Hey Chris! LaMont ( from the old Paris group),

Yes, I would agree with your Paris assessment of Paris's magic was in its software. But, the onboard 20 bit i/o and the 24-bit 1/o cards has some understated magic as well.

Sometimes, ( most times) I'm always trying to get my mixes( Logic, Pro Tools HD, Cubase) to get that sound. These days, I'm using the AVID ( Purple) HD i/o units which sound amazing ( great low end, nice top).

But, the closest DAW I've come across that can slam a mix like Paris is the Harrison Mix Bus. They ( Harrison) have some of that (analog-modeling, gain staging) Mojo that Paris has..

Stating that, I feel that's the problem with a lot of Music today and that it's Recorded and mixed on the same system- Pro Tools.

This year, I'm going back to Paris and Harrison Mix Buss. I need that big "Warmth" in my life. Where I don't need Tape sims and Channel simulators..Paris and Harrison already have that "baked' in..

Take care buddy





Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisLudwig View Post
Hi ,


You are constantly wasting money on gear that will not do what you are trying to do.
Have you at least tried to see what the maximum number of Wami racks work?
If no more than one then it is a lost cause and you wasted lots of money on gear that doe snot work as advertised. I can almost guarantee that They never tested more than a 3 card setup. Most likely it is something that never worked any place other than on paper.

I have never heard of any one using more than one of them reliably. I seen some people years ago getting up to 3 running but never reliably for a long time.

Paris hardware used state of the art ADDA and clock design in 1998.....
It is not as good ADDA or clock wise that any current ADDA available Most $100 2 ch sound cards have better quality converter design at this point.

What made Paris sound good was the software's audio engine that had analog console and tape simulation built into the audio engine.
But it also was a closed and dead end system when it came to development. It will not work with most any current VST plugin correctly and is only low latency when using its own built in plugins.
It has zero usable MIDi support and in version 3.0 you will need to disable the MIDI functions other than time code sync all together if you want it to be stable.

My only advice at this point if you want to stop spending money is to try to get 2 or 3 of the Wami Racks working together and give up on the 4.

There is absolutely nothing preventing you from running a commercial studio with even just one Wami rack.

There is absolutely nothing preventing from creating professional commercial ITB or OTB mixes using even just the one Wami rack.

Thanks Chris
Old 16th January 2019
  #48
Gear Guru
Glad to hear about Mixbus. I really like the sound and workflow, support is first rate....!
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