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Question about ensoinq Paris DAW DAW Software
Old 1 week ago
  #1
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Question about ensoinq Paris DAW

Edit - sorry for wrong typing - it should be Ensoniq i get it..


I have a question.

Let's say i'll bite it and i am willing to try experimenting with Paris system. If this is actually applicable for my case.

I am finding it hard to believe Paris is something special when it comes to converting but let just say that i am having quite a few friends which swear by it. Although they abandoned it for the lack of support on modern computers and lack of ASIO driver (that changed obviously). And they claim that Paris had the best "sound". Once friend claim it's better then recording to Tape. Another said developer was some genius. They act like cult sometimes.

Why i am interest to try it? Well seeing new ASIO driver in public i might bite the bullet and my hearing about Paris sound i might be able to try it to improve my sounds. I am always looking to do that.

1. Tell me is it for me? I am mostly 98% ITB. Those people that swear by it made me guessing that i could use it for mixing and making my sound better. I have 32 input output ATM. Used for various HW gear and FX. But my sound generation is mostly ITB these days. I am using more and more software.

Yes i do think i had better results in older analogue mixers. However now when i am mostly ITB i did find and i am struggling with sterile cold sound. I like it sometimes but sometimes i miss that separation and grunge. Hard to describe it. I miss spatial thingie. Not talking about reverb here.

2. Where does Paris "Sound" comes from? Do i have to use it's effects? My assumption (based on claims by my friends ) is that anything which passes through Paris is somewhat better. Do i have to drive it? What?

3. If some coloring is happening just by passing through it - what configuration do i need to send my DAW mixer outs in to Paris and back in. What? So confused there.

4. Did anyone tried to run Paris on modern computers like win 10 etc. I mean how do you plug these old cards inside?

Sorry if questions are stupid i am genuinely interested what my friends are bragging about.
Old 1 week ago
  #2
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b0se's Avatar
Apologies to deviate from your specific question, but five other options:

1) Airwindows Console summing (amazing)

2) Airwindows plus True Iron

3) Airwindows plus True Iron and channel strip (SSL 4K or 9K for me)

4) Airwindows plus Nebula (console line-in / preamps - Neve/SSl etc)

5) Harrison Mixbus

3 and 4 work a treat for me. Mojo central with great depth and separation. Add Gullfoss on your mixbus/master for that magic touch.

Just a thought!
Old 1 week ago
  #3
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aye bose, but think of those AND Paris....

anyway, on topic:

I'm also interested in the original question for similar reasons - looking forward to hear what experienced paris folk say...
Old 1 week ago
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b0se View Post
Apologies to deviate from your specific question, but five other options:

1) Airwindows Console summing (amazing)

2) Airwindows plus True Iron

3) Airwindows plus True Iron and channel strip (SSL 4K or 9K for me)

4) Airwindows plus Nebula (console line-in / preamps - Neve/SSl etc)

5) Harrison Mixbus

3 and 4 work a treat for me. Mojo central with great depth and separation. Add Gullfoss on your mixbus/master for that magic touch.

Just a thought!
Thanks for your input. Believe it or not i have around 95% of Acustica Audio portfolio + some nice 3rd party libraries. I enjoy them - Acustica dramatically changed sound processing ITB - for me. Never tried Kazrog True Iron. Last year i have had enough of ITB transformer modeling and toldmyself the hell with that mushy sound - i may be wrong maybe Kazrog is cool. Will try it.

However i seek for that last 10% of mixing engine. And i don't want to loose ITB workflow therefore i am looking for some kind of DSP mixer which have analog like sound. From my understanding people which rave about Paris - they do that because of mixing engine and onboard conversion + i don't know what but they say that sound is nothing like anything else - which i am having hard time to understand and believe.

But i know they can't be all mad fools hence my thread. I see other have similar question. Can't wait for some answer.

Thanks guys.
Old 1 week ago
  #5
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b0se's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by xmein View Post
Thanks for your input. Believe it or not i have around 95% of Acustica Audio portfolio + some nice 3rd party libraries. I enjoy them - Acustica dramatically changed sound processing ITB - for me. Never tried Kazrog True Iron. Last year i have had enough of ITB transformer modeling and toldmyself the hell with that mushy sound - i may be wrong maybe Kazrog is cool. Will try it.

However i seek for that last 10% of mixing engine. And i don't want to loose ITB workflow therefore i am looking for some kind of DSP mixer which have analog like sound. From my understanding people which rave about Paris - they do that because of mixing engine and onboard conversion + i don't know what but they say that sound is nothing like anything else - which i am having hard time to understand and believe.

But i know they can't be all mad fools hence my thread. I see other have similar question. Can't wait for some answer.

Thanks guys.
Fair enough bud! Console + TI on channels with Gullfoss on the mixbus gives you that extra %. Your 10%? No idea, but it's what I was after ITB for that opening/finishing touch. YMMV of course. I shall leave it there :¬)
Old 1 week ago
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b0se View Post
Fair enough bud! Console + TI on channels with Gullfoss on the mixbus gives you that extra %. Your 10%? No idea, but it's what I was after ITB for that opening/finishing touch. YMMV of course. I shall leave it there :¬)
Super. Will try it. THX
Old 6 days ago
  #7
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Will The Weirdo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by b0se View Post
Apologies to deviate from your specific question, but five other options:

1) Airwindows Console summing (amazing)

2) Airwindows plus True Iron

3) Airwindows plus True Iron and channel strip (SSL 4K or 9K for me)

4) Airwindows plus Nebula (console line-in / preamps - Neve/SSl etc)

5) Harrison Mixbus

3 and 4 work a treat for me. Mojo central with great depth and separation. Add Gullfoss on your mixbus/master for that magic touch.

Just a thought!
FWIW, those options will not sound like PARIS.
Old 6 days ago
  #8
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b0se's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Will The Weirdo View Post
FWIW, those options will not sound like PARIS.
I've not heard PARIS (or even heard of it), mentioned these as xmein mentioned analogue summing.
Old 6 days ago
  #9
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Will The Weirdo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by xmein View Post
1. Tell me is it for me? I am mostly 98% ITB. Those people that swear by it made me guessing that i could use it for mixing and making my sound better. I have 32 input output ATM. Used for various HW gear and FX. But my sound generation is mostly ITB these days. I am using more and more software.
I doubt PARIS is for you. The system is older and limited by modern standards, thinking you will enjoy the limitations is not my bet. Those of us that used it for years can easily work around those limitations because we had to, but today I would not recommend it to those unfamiliar with it. It's PCI based too, so the new motherboards will not support it in most cases, and that's just another reason to skip it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xmein View Post
Yes i do think i had better results in older analogue mixers. However now when i am mostly ITB i did find and i am struggling with sterile cold sound. I like it sometimes but sometimes i miss that separation and grunge. Hard to describe it. I miss spatial thingie. Not talking about reverb here.
PARIS is as far from cold and sterile as it gets in a DAW, and you can drive certain gain stage areas of the hardware/software for a unique saturation. PARIS and Radar were always talked about in similar conversations, so if you have used a Radar system you will have a better idea of what to expect.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xmein View Post
2. Where does Paris "Sound" comes from? Do i have to use it's effects? My assumption (based on claims by my friends ) is that anything which passes through Paris is somewhat better. Do i have to drive it? What?
The sound of PARIS is a combination of the Ensoniq converters (think Burl-esque), the custom Ensoniq DSP chips, and the software. Better is very subjective, so think of the PARIS sound as it's own thing. Weather the PARIS sound is what you want is worth visiting one of your friends to find out before you take the plunge. You can drive PARIS or back off and the sound will vary, similar to analog, but with the Ensoniq flavor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xmein View Post
3. If some coloring is happening just by passing through it - what configuration do i need to send my DAW mixer outs in to Paris and back in. What? So confused there.
Just track into it, then mix, not much to be confused about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xmein View Post
4. Did anyone tried to run Paris on modern computers like win 10 etc. I mean how do you plug these old cards inside?
The current PARIS x64 installer works with XP, Win 7 and Win 10. Mike has single-handedly kept PARIS very current with his drivers.

IMHO, a few unbiased Pros and Cons.
Pros
Sounds great as is in a contained system.
Nice Ensoniq EFX, Mike ported some DP4 EFX over to PARIS.
Still runs older Direct X and VST plugins if you can find them.
Cheap.
Unique system.

Cons
Hardware is older and becoming hard to find.
Older software with NO Plugin Delay Compensation.
Will not run modern VST plugins.
PCI based DSP.
Unique system.
Old 6 days ago
  #10
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Will The Weirdo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by b0se View Post
I've not heard PARIS (or even heard of it), mentioned these as xmein mentioned analogue summing.
These are the sound of PARIS, I did these years back.



Old 6 days ago
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Will The Weirdo View Post
Pros
Sounds great as is in a contained system.
Nice Ensoniq EFX, Mike ported some DP4 EFX over to PARIS.
Still runs older Direct X and VST plugins if you can find them.
Cheap.
Unique system.

Cons
Hardware is older and becoming hard to find.
Older software with NO Plugin Delay Compensation.
Will not run modern VST plugins.
PCI based DSP.
Unique system.
Thank you for your extensive and honest answer. Really thank you.

Regards
Old 6 days ago
  #12
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Hey, Will!

Thanks for sharing your experience and recordings.

The software limitations are the exact reason that I spent the last couple of years writing the 64 bit ASIO driver. I personally like the old PARIS software, but choices are good, and there is lots to like in newer DAWs.

As for finding computers with classic PCI slots, Aaron just put together a new PC that supports 9th gen Core i9s, and it has classic PCI slots. It can be done.

To my ears, PARIS combines a warmth with detail. I can hear the room that every instrument was recorded in, but it never sounds cold.

All the best,

Mike
Old 6 days ago
  #13
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b0se's Avatar
Is the source code of PARIS available?
Old 6 days ago
  #14
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I've tried and tried to get it. I'm not even sure it exists anymore.
Old 6 days ago
  #15
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b0se's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeaudet View Post
I've tried and tried to get it. I'm not even sure it exists anymore.
A shame indeed. Much respect for taking the initiative/time to write the new driver.
Old 6 days ago
  #16
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yes full respect to Mike for devoting himself to this so much!

A few Qs.. the new drivers and using with a different DAW, that would mean I can use a 64bit DAW but no use of the EPS chips, right? just the converters?

The old software and mike's ported efx is all 32bit only right?
Old 6 days ago
  #17
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Will The Weirdo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeaudet View Post
As for finding computers with classic PCI slots, Aaron just put together a new PC that supports 9th gen Core i9s, and it has classic PCI slots. It can be done.
Woah, can you list the specs here, I'm sure some would be interested in that hardware.
Old 6 days ago
  #18
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XMEIN. Tell me is it for me? I am mostly 98% ITB. Those people that swear by it made me guessing that i could use it for mixing and making my sound better. I have 32 input output ATM. Used for various HW gear and FX. But my sound generation is mostly ITB these days. I am using more and more software.

AA: Honestly, you have to decide that for yourself, but I can give you some facts to make the decision. I mix almost 100% ITB myself these days, but I do have a couple of hardware pieces that IMHO haven’t been reproduced well enough for me to dump the hardware.

XMEIN. Yes i do think i had better results in older analogue mixers. However now when i am mostly ITB i did find and i am struggling with sterile cold sound. I like it sometimes but sometimes i miss that separation and grunge. Hard to describe it. I miss spatial thingie. Not talking about reverb here.

AA: What you’re talking about here, I refer to as “glue”. It binds things together in a way that analog does, but with some extra digital accuracy to the imaging and sound stage. This is a big part of the Paris sound. I’m using a combo of the Paris converters, StudioOne (mostly at this point) summing, and some varying Waves plugs. If you haven’t tried the cheapo Abbey Road Vinyl plug, you’ll be shocked at what it does for you in terms of solidifying the lows together. I’m not a big fan of ‘famous name here’ plugs, but this one does it for me along with the Andrew Scheps Omni channel.

XMEIN. Where does Paris "Sound" comes from? Do i have to use its effects? My assumption (based on claims by my friends ) is that anything which passes through Paris is somewhat better. Do i have to drive it? What?

AA: Paris sound...That’s a huge question. I believe it’s cumulative.You don’t have to use its effects. Within the Paris App, YES you want to drive it pretty hard - Like analog. But in the right places, IE don’t burn the input when recording (or the VST holes), but once in the mixer slap it like a rented donkey. Don't smash the snot out of a vocal but DO smash the snot out of a bass or kick, floor toms - things with a low freq fundamental reap the most benefit. And there are different ways to smash things, like using the gain in the EQ does superb things to a kick. What we’re talking about here is the Paris system, as a whole including the Paris EXE. If you’re doing ASIO, rules will change depending on your app. For instance shoving pro tools makes it smaller on the mix stage. YMMV, and I’m not here to argue with anyone on that. It’s a widely known no-no to run PT hot. However, Studio One likes being pushed like Paris (this is independent of the Paris hardware, which gives you access to the Paris hardware sound using the Audet ASIO driver).
Having said that, I’ve heard for years of PT guys sneaking a running Paris w/MEC under their desk to submix stems out to final summing. You can have a master ready hot mix that way that PT will not give you on its own.
There is a number of ways to do that, but it depends on what you’re summing. If you run your rig in anything over 48k, you have to use the analog ports. If you’re straight digital, you’ll need an MEC for SPDIF L/R, or you want to sum more than stereo through it, an ADAT card in your MEC. Your projects in your Native Applications, other than how you want to bus/route them through Paris, don’t change. Paris does the heavy lifting of mix glue in that scenario.
If you're an in-the-box mixer, having that analog type glue is huge, IMHO. I've talked to numerous guys that had to go Pro Tools for the work, but 10 years later still can't get it to sound as glued as Paris. There's a good reason this system has survived all the bankruptcy business killing crap it has. It is still untouchable in some ways, and to be blunt one can 196/24 it all day long, and your mix is STILL going to end up on a crappy 160k MP3 at the end of the day. To me, the glue is much, much more important.

XMEIN. If some coloring is happening just by passing through it - what configuration do i need to send my DAW mixer outs in to Paris and back in. What? So confused there.

AA: Coloring… I’m not sure in the common sense of that word it fully applies. Paris converters are consistent, and excellent. There’s definitely voodoo in the app, but the hardware is a complimentary part of that voodoo. There are a half dozen gain stages in the Paris app, each with their own character (7 if you count virtual native submixing). There is also a glue attached to the hardware I/O (which you will have access to with the Audet ASIO driver). I'm not the kind that likes an imprint on his recordings because of build-up, but I've never had that problem with Paris/Paris Hardware.

If you want to know more about the Paris system as a whole, I shot a video with Brian Tankersley a 'few' years ago. Obviously, it won't include info on the brand new Audet ASIO driver, however it covers the stock Paris system pretty well. I released it to the world for free some years back, you can find it here: Ensoniq PARIS Tutorial Video Part 2/21 on Vimeo

XMEIN. Did anyone try to run Paris on modern computers like win 10 etc. I mean how do you plug these old cards inside?

AA: I’m doing this right now, using the ASIO driver (With Studio One, Sonar Producer, Sound Forge, Vegas, etc…) and Paris.exe versions 2 and 3. The system I chose has to have the obligatory PCI 32 bit slot, unless you buy up to a Magma (Or OneStopSystems) that can convert PCIe to a PCI chassis. I’m personally running an old PCI to PCI chassis, because I already have it. As a result of that my motherboard of choice is an ASRock Z370 PRO4. The ASIO driver has been great, and I can hear mixes quite well. I have been using the 32 bit ASIO since it was released with Windows 7x64, but when the ASIO 64 bit became available, I jumped to a new(er) Intel Generation 8 setup and loaded Win10 Home x64 on it.

My current system specs:
ASRock Z370 Pro4 (because it has good memory channel and the necessary PCI 32 bit slot for EDS access)
Intel i5-8600k CPU
GSkill 16GB (Dual Channel Kit) 3200MHz DDR4 Trident Z Desktop Memory (F4-3200C16D-16GTZB)

I'm a 4x EDS, word clock, 3x MEC with expansion modules setup. I have 2x IF-2's, 2x Adat cards, and 2x 8in / 1x 8out analog cards.
Every I/O works just like it should from the ASIO Paris control panel Audet created.

It's worth note that each EDS card is good for 24 streams of audio, and how you want to configure that is up to you. In ASIO mode (with your favorite native recording app), you really only need one or maybe two EDS cards with an MEC and some I/O in them. Each MEC has 6 in/6out built into it (4 analogs and a SPDIF) - add a couple of I/O cards, and you're there.
Old 6 days ago
  #19
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Will, the reason I went with 8th Gen was because that's the Gen the BIOS shipped compatible with on the mobo. If you already have access to an 8th gen Intel CPU, you can stab that in there, update the BIOS, then with the new microcode dump a 9th Gen in it.

ASRock > Z370 Pro4

All the way up to an i9-9900K(P0) Coffee Lake-S With the latest BIOS microcode. At some point I'll probably drop one in, but when I'm stuffing 30 some odd tracks at once, and punching ALL of them like a madman at 64 samples on my i5 in Sonar X3 Producer.... I didn't see the need

Last edited by aaronallen; 6 days ago at 07:11 AM.. Reason: incomplete information, improving ease of obtaining info for forum members
Old 6 days ago
  #20
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Guys...just wanted to say thank you from the bottom of my heart. Not only for providing me super extensive info but for contributing here. For a moment i saw the light and said to myself - wow this public forums aren't ruined with countless troll bitchin - after all

aaronallen - super cool info and thanks for posting the video

All the best to you guys
Old 6 days ago
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Will The Weirdo View Post
Woah, can you list the specs here, I'm sure some would be interested in that hardware.
Yep - count me interested

Btw i am officially in hunt for Paris system. Will try to buy one locally.
Old 5 days ago
  #22
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Hi Mutetourettes,

The ASIO doesn't provide access to any EDS effects (though it does use ESP2F to do the DMA work).

I wouldn't underestimate the contribution of the converters to the PARIS sound.

Plus, it's not one or the other. The driver also allows the use of PARIS.exe (just not at the same time). I actually re-wrote large sections of the user mode driver as part of the ASIO x64 project. Some of those changes allow faster start up of PARIS.exe and faster effects loading within PARIS.exe. So, even on Windows 10 x64, you can still run PARIS.exe as before.

I personally like PARIS.exe for tracking, but like the ASIO for mixing, virtual instruments, or working with video.

All the best,

Mike
Old 5 days ago
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeaudet View Post
Hi Mutetourettes,

The ASIO doesn't provide access to any EDS effects (though it does use ESP2F to do the DMA work).

I wouldn't underestimate the contribution of the converters to the PARIS sound.

Plus, it's not one or the other. The driver also allows the use of PARIS.exe (just not at the same time). I actually re-wrote large sections of the user mode driver as part of the ASIO x64 project. Some of those changes allow faster start up of PARIS.exe and faster effects loading within PARIS.exe. So, even on Windows 10 x64, you can still run PARIS.exe as before.

I personally like PARIS.exe for tracking, but like the ASIO for mixing, virtual instruments, or working with video.

All the best,

Mike
Hi Mike - thanks for clarifying! And thanks for coding!!!!
Old 5 days ago
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xmein View Post
Yep - count me interested

Btw i am officially in hunt for Paris system. Will try to buy one locally.
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