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Which DAW for post ???
Old 18th February 2007
  #121
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by charles maynes View Post
the Euphonix - Digidesign relationship is complex to say the least-

If I were a betting man, I would not count on Digi openning up their controller archetecture.

just an opinion...

charles maynes

I most likely think you're correct... sad, but true.

-Todd A.
Old 26th February 2007
  #122
Gear Nut
 
Sound Chaser's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by smsjr View Post
For what it's worth, I work on an Pro Tools HD at my main gig. At home, I use Pro Tools LE and Nuendo. I also own Digital Performer, Soundtrack Pro, etc.

They are all great tools, and quite honestly, you could do some good work with any of them once you get familiar enough with the interfaces, strength/weaknesses. etc.

I am a geek about that stuff too) and more inspired by the creativty and decisions that went into creating their art. I sometimes feel like, I could have all the gear that has ever been made and never achieve the same results because there is such a difference in the talent level.

Steve

I am inspired by your level headed humility. You are the type of person that people want to work with.
Old 27th February 2007
  #123
Gear Maniac
 
smsjr's Avatar
 

Thanks Sound Chaser, I appreciate that. I am very easy to work with. I enjoy collaboration, learning from others, and hopefully improving my skills as time goes on so that I can eventually feel I've done the best I can in this career. I'm inspired everyday by the work that is being done by other sound colleagues. It's enough to get you up in the morning and say, damn, I need to try even harder.

Steve
Old 27th February 2007
  #124
Hey all, here I go diving into this very informative thread.

My biz partner and myself have always been hooked on dedicated hardware DAW. In 97 when we set forth to create Yellow Cab Studios we had one dream: the Fairlight MFX3+. As we could'nt afford one (it cost 60 000€ at the time) we went for the cheaper Akai DD1500. There was less horsepower, and 8 tracks less in the Akai, but it got us up and running in the post business. It was rugged, sync was solid, and reliable as hell.

A year later we were able to buy 2 used MFX3+ at a much cheaper price than the original 60k. We were in heaven, a part from some hardware troubles that we finally managed to solve. Editing went fast, onboard sound database rocked.

In the meantime the rest of the known world was evolving with PT. The word was everywhere: PT is the flavour of the day. Very fast clients would call in saying they needed a PT room. They did'nt need PT, they just needed the job to be done, but the name stuck. We gradually started to get frustrated with the Fairlight's poor interchange and rigid structure.

After having built our bigger studio in 2004, we needed to have more playback tracks for the films we were going to mix. I looked at Fairlight, and rented a QDC Satellite machine from them for a while. But the cost of ownership was through the roof and that did'nt fly. I had started playing around with Nuendo for a film where I needed a good sequencer to control a sampler for a complex "rythmic" sequence. I soon started editing sound on it.

I added a MADI card for less than 1000$ and I got 56 outputs to my Soundtracs DS00 console. I was sold. Sync was good with the Timebase unit (though the unit was TOTALLY bugged for months).

I soon put in a second MADI card. And bought other PCs for the editing rooms.

We now have 4 Nuendo rigs, with the main one in the mix room outputting 112 tracks via MADI to the console. I'm really quite happy with how it works. I admit there are lots of things that I'd like to see evolve to make into a better Post product than it is. But we've done quite a few features on it now and it delivers.

The B studio still has it's Fairlight MFX3+ though, as documentary and corporate film stuff needs the "edit fast fast fast" feel that it gives us. B studio also has a TDM PT 6.4.1 rig.

The A studio also has a TDM PT 6.4.1 rig with 3 mix farm cards, output to 4 ADAT bridges (24 bit) and a RME ADAT-MADI converter. We need this for projects that come in edited elsewhere. We won't even consider converting PT projects to Nuendo for the mix, too much pain...

The next steps are the following: will Nuendo progress enough to make us as happy as we were with the MFX? I'll be trying out a Euphonix MC shortly, only as an editing controller to see if the feel is there...
Fairlight are making a come-back with a 18 000$ Satellite station based on the CC-1 tech: will we fall for this after 3 years of Nuendo and open-ness?

We've seen a lot of Pyramix around here, but I'm not tempted. It does offer lots of import/export options (that ALL come at an extra price FWIW), but the editing environment does'nt give me anything more than Nuendo, and the price is much higher.


Steven
Old 27th February 2007
  #125
Lives for gear
 
jahtao's Avatar
Hi Steven, i'm interested to hear more about Fairlight. Particuarly as they're claiming to be ahead of the pack with their new dsp products. That, and i've never seen one in action! : )

It sounds like you like Fairlight best but found it doesn't best suit your needs, especially when price is taken into account. Are you happily moving away from Fairlight, are you hoping to invest more in Fairlight in the future?

Would you mind telling me a bit about it, what are Fairlights strengths/weaknesses?

Cheers,
Matt
Old 28th February 2007
  #126
Quote:
Originally Posted by jahtao View Post
Hi Steven, i'm interested to hear more about Fairlight. Particuarly as they're claiming to be ahead of the pack with their new dsp products. That, and i've never seen one in action! : )

It sounds like you like Fairlight best but found it doesn't best suit your needs, especially when price is taken into account. Are you happily moving away from Fairlight, are you hoping to invest more in Fairlight in the future?

Would you mind telling me a bit about it, what are Fairlights strengths/weaknesses?

Cheers,
Matt
Hey Matt,

to be quite honest, my ownership of Fairlight products stops at the MFX3+ which dates back to 1997 (the release of it). We still have 3 of those that we love but that certainly dont have as much use as before. The smaller one (a 24 track to 4 output system that we had in an editing room) is gathering dust. The two others are used as a stem recorder (the MFX still is the best 24 track recorder out there) and a editing system for video projects (documentaries, corporate stuff).

The big problem with the MFX3+ is that it was closed as could possibly be. Exporting wav files is only 16 bit, and ONLY thru a FAT16 HD if you dont have the Medialink option (networking).

The following Fairlight models got better (QDC engine) with 48 tracks and FAT32 drive support, and MADI interfaces. You can import/export 24 bit wav files with those. The pre-CC1 machines are all of that build.

Of the new CC-1 powered machines I know nothing more than the PR blurb that we have all read by now. The BIG difference is that now you wont have a Fairlight Mainframe sitting in your machine room, but a PC with PCIe slots for the CC-1 cards. That in itself is a huge change for them. But you keep what made the Fairlight: a good hardware editing controller (not talking about the Constellation mixer here), that now plugs in via USB instead of a 24pin Centronics connector + 37 pin DSub...

What, in my opinion is a Fairlight machine's strong points?

- Rock solid sync functionnalities. Great 9 pin control (and slaving). You'd be far fetched to find any machine that worked as well as a 9 pin controller.
- Ultra fast editing with a hardware editing remote (my favourite being the older MFK remote, rather than the Binnacle thingy).
- Good sound in just about any situation except time strecthing and pitch shifting on the MFX3+.
- Clip based EQ and automation (levels and pan). Now THIS is good. Once you start using a realtime EQ on a per clip basis you'll ask yourself why all the other manufacturers dont do the same thing.
- Realtime fades. Easily matched in Nuendo (even superior there) but for which PT are still in the dark ages (strangely).

I'm sure the new products will carry on this legacy. But where I'd be wary is, once again, for the cost of options. Fairlight, long before Pyramix started doing the "pick on the menu" price-list, had everything marked down as an option. EQ, import-export, number of tracks. Everything was dongle-ised and paid for. Quite frustrating and annoying after a while. Maybe they have changed their policy on this but I'm not sure.

Imagine that great CC-1 card with all it's lovely BNC connectors. Do you really think MADI outputs will be enabled from the get go without having to pay for it? And the Pyxis video track in the 18 000$ Satellite? I'm pretty sure that's a paying option also, even thought the hardware is there.

Of course going from 45 000$ to 19 000$ is a big change, the more so if you take into account the higher track count and better interoperability with other systems (after all it IS a PC now), but the hidden stuff can make one think twice about jumping back into the bandwagon again.

If i could hook up the Fairlight controller to my Nuendo rig I would be really happy. But that wont happen, so my option (because there really is only one option) is the Euphonix MC controller. Thing is that the MC costs 18 000$ on it's own...


Steven
Old 28th February 2007
  #127
Lives for gear
 
jahtao's Avatar
Thanks for a great answer : )

Yup clip based eq/automation (like i'm used to in SADiE) is... amazing! (As are SADiE's fades btw). Why do most other manufacturers leave this out? Coz PT aint got it? Hmmm....

Well thanks again. I've got a pal whose just getting started with some sort of Fairlight system, i think i'll give him a shout and ask about the new products... if they've not worked him to death yet : )

peace ooot
Old 28th February 2007
  #128
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jahtao View Post
Thanks for a great answer : )

Yup clip based eq/automation (like i'm used to in SADiE) is... amazing! (As are SADiE's fades btw). Why do most other manufacturers leave this out? Coz PT aint got it? Hmmm....

Well thanks again. I've got a pal whose just getting started with some sort of Fairlight system, i think i'll give him a shout and ask about the new products... if they've not worked him to death yet : )

peace ooot
Aren't all the plug ins etc clip based in Sequoia/Samplitude? I mean not just EQ but any sort of VST?

Philip Perkins
Old 28th February 2007
  #129
Quote:
Originally Posted by philper View Post
Aren't all the plug ins etc clip based in Sequoia/Samplitude? I mean not just EQ but any sort of VST?

Philip Perkins
Yes that's my understanding also. Sadly it does'nt make up for Samplitude's flaws for post work (having not used it personnaly, I am voicing the opinion of a close friend who did use Samplitude before turning to Nuendo).
Old 2nd March 2007
  #130
Gear Head
 
PostFade's Avatar
 

What about Fairlight

Surely Fairlight should count in any rundown of serious post gear.
I've still got the first mfx3plus I bought 10 years ago and that one is working for me everyday and 'doesn't owe me a penny'. How many of you PT users can say that!
Fairlight have the best interface for those of us that don't want to be clutching a 'rodent' as we mix and my new Constellation-XT with the CC-1 card is a truly outstanding mixing experience.

David Taylor
PostFade Sound
Pinewood UK
Old 2nd March 2007
  #131
Quote:
Originally Posted by PostFade View Post
my new Constellation-XT with the CC-1 card is a truly outstanding mixing experience.

David Taylor
Hi David, long time no chat

So you broke the bank and bought a Constellation? Great news. I'd love to hear your impressions on it as the CC-1 stuff has caught our attention.

Steven
Old 20th December 2008
  #132
Gear Nut
 

18 months later, but this made for a great read this morning. Thank you all for your willingness to share. You've made this a proper educational Saturday for me.
Old 21st December 2008
  #133
Here for the gear
 

The bottom line that everyone keeps returning to relative to the "best" DAW is: it depends.

Charles M hit one of the key points earlier in the thread when he referred to the delivery scenario. I think that what he is mostly envisioning is delivering stems as session documents that can be altered on the mix stage. In that scenario, it is almost certain that Pro Tools is the format to use.

Someone else (maybe Charles again) pointed out that authoring sfx can be done with any tools because audio file format compatibility is the only concern, not session compatibility.

This leads to the other key point that really has not been touched on at all: what do we mean when we say "audio post"? Is the discussion focused entirely on large-scale film production? Does TV post vary from this? Video game "post" (it strictly fit the same production model) does not, at least, not to the same degree, as a large number of assets are delivered in final form as files that get integrated into the game, not sessions to be mixed.

The point about whether post-production is contained in a single facility is also significant. I worked at one studio that produced a network TV show and a fair number of industrial films. All of the audio for those projects was done in-house, so external compatibility was not an issue.

When I was at LucasArts, we tired of the cost of the hardware/software cycle required by Pro Tools (and the higher cost of TDM plug-ins). While we kept Pro Tools systems in our mixing suite, most of our design/editing suites switched to Digital Performer. The compatibility issue was avoided by remotely controlling the computers running DP from the mix suite and bringing the output in as audio, rather than trying to run everything on the mix suite's machine. It worked quite well and allowed us to edit on the original machine as needed.

It is also possible to just bounce audio files from any tool and drag them into Pro Tools. I remember a project where we edited dialog on a non-Pro Tools system (I think it was a WaveFrame, but I can't really remember now), using a good ol' two-pop to double-check sync, bounced each track from the beginning of the session, dragged them into Pro Tools, then used Strip Silence to break the stem back into separate regions.

Sure, we didn't bring along all of the automation and plug-ins, but the objective was to accomplish editing, balancing, and corrective processing, leaving creative processing and automation for the mix stage. It may sound like extra work, but it was actually a very quick and painless process that worked perfectly on the first attempt.

In short, it is absolutely true that Pro Tools has far and away the greatest market penetration in audio post, especially the film world, which makes it essential in nearly any situation in which compatibility with another facility is an issue.

However, my experience is that there are quite a few situations that are not subject to this restriction, and, in those cases, there can be greater freedom to use another tool.
Old 21st December 2008
  #134
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry the O View Post
The bottom line that everyone keeps returning to relative to the "best" DAW is: it depends.

Charles M hit one of the key points earlier in the thread when he referred to the delivery scenario. I think that what he is mostly envisioning is delivering stems as session documents that can be altered on the mix stage. In that scenario, it is almost certain that Pro Tools is the format to use.

Someone else (maybe Charles again) pointed out that authoring sfx can be done with any tools because audio file format compatibility is the only concern, not session compatibility.

This leads to the other key point that really has not been touched on at all: what do we mean when we say "audio post"? Is the discussion focused entirely on large-scale film production? Does TV post vary from this? Video game "post" (it strictly fit the same production model) does not, at least, not to the same degree, as a large number of assets are delivered in final form as files that get integrated into the game, not sessions to be mixed.

The point about whether post-production is contained in a single facility is also significant. I worked at one studio that produced a network TV show and a fair number of industrial films. All of the audio for those projects was done in-house, so external compatibility was not an issue.

When I was at LucasArts, we tired of the cost of the hardware/software cycle required by Pro Tools (and the higher cost of TDM plug-ins). While we kept Pro Tools systems in our mixing suite, most of our design/editing suites switched to Digital Performer. The compatibility issue was avoided by remotely controlling the computers running DP from the mix suite and bringing the output in as audio, rather than trying to run everything on the mix suite's machine. It worked quite well and allowed us to edit on the original machine as needed.

It is also possible to just bounce audio files from any tool and drag them into Pro Tools. I remember a project where we edited dialog on a non-Pro Tools system (I think it was a WaveFrame, but I can't really remember now), using a good ol' two-pop to double-check sync, bounced each track from the beginning of the session, dragged them into Pro Tools, then used Strip Silence to break the stem back into separate regions.

Sure, we didn't bring along all of the automation and plug-ins, but the objective was to accomplish editing, balancing, and corrective processing, leaving creative processing and automation for the mix stage. It may sound like extra work, but it was actually a very quick and painless process that worked perfectly on the first attempt.

In short, it is absolutely true that Pro Tools has far and away the greatest market penetration in audio post, especially the film world, which makes it essential in nearly any situation in which compatibility with another facility is an issue.

However, my experience is that there are quite a few situations that are not subject to this restriction, and, in those cases, there can be greater freedom to use another tool.
In the course of several jobs this year I talked with a lot of game and internet people who do all their work (incl audio) in the Adobe CS suite(s). They mostly don't need to be compato with anyone else, and the price was right, esp in that they needed the apps on a whole lot of systems.

Philip Perkins
Old 21st December 2008
  #135
I personally like Samplitude for most multitrack editing and recording sessions. But after reading this topic I guess it has some problems with post production. I hate ProTools but I guess it is becoming the defacto standard for Post. The college were I worked for 26 years has become an all ProTools facility and honestly the stuff I am hearing from them does not sound very good at all. My mentor uses Fairlights and has at present 7 of them. I am not sure what direction to go. This has been a very enlightening read and I thank you all for sharing.
Old 21st December 2008
  #136
Lives for gear
 

I use Samplitude exclusively here, and send audio and EDL to full post suites wherever/whenever required.

My own studio isn't entirely setup for full video post, but I hear of studios in Europe using Sequoia exclusively front-to-back for post.

I don't really see any defacto full-blown standards, since video post paradigm is different for TV, than it is for film, or even <ahem> games.

At least that's my experience.

Greg
Old 21st December 2008
  #137
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by philper View Post
Aren't all the plug ins etc clip based in Sequoia/Samplitude? I mean not just EQ but any sort of VST?

Philip Perkins
Yes, each object/clip in Sequoia/Samplitude can have it's own EQ, VST, effects, etc.

Greg
Old 14th March 2011
  #138
Lives for gear
 

Which DAW for post ??? Now that it's March 2011
Old 14th March 2011
  #139
Gear Guru
 
charles maynes's Avatar
 

it entirely depends on where you are and the clients requirements. in Los Angeles, Pro Tools is pretty popular though.
Old 14th March 2011
  #140
Quote:
Originally Posted by StudioTinPanAll View Post
nuendo is THE post production daw (i'm not familiar with any other)
+1

In my opinion, Nuendo over Protools every day!
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