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mattrico 9th June 2019 11:52 PM

ADAT upgrade for recording and playback - HELP!
 
Hi All, I've just spent all morning trying to wrap my head around a new setup that I'm looking at trying.

Basically, I have 2 nice analog preamps (ISA One and GAP Pre 73) that are currently running into the inserts of an ART DPS II, being converted from there to digital, then into a Focusrite 18i6 via SPDIF. I want to get hold of a Behringer ADA8200 because I hear the converters are amazing bang for buck, plus it would be nice to have the extra preamps, but it leads me to some questions:

1. Will the A/D conversion be that much better than the ART DPS II?

2. The Focusrite doesn't have ADAT out so I'd have to figure out some way of getting that happening so that I can have stereo (mixbus) playback through the ADA8200 (which is possible right?). Is there some way of running just an ADAT output, like a USB - ADAT box such as the miniDSP one? Will the playback sound that much better than the Focusrite playback?

It's starting to get a bit complicated for me so any help is appreciated!

Matt

Ajavalon 10th June 2019 03:33 AM

Hey Matt,can't speak too the difference in conversion between those units but you can certainly get a superb ADAT out by adding the A/D card to your ISA One.

bgood 10th June 2019 08:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mattrico (Post 14029595)
Hi All, I've just spent all morning trying to wrap my head around a new setup that I'm looking at trying.

Basically, I have 2 nice analog preamps (ISA One and GAP Pre 73) that are currently running into the inserts of an ART DPS II, being converted from there to digital, then into a Focusrite 18i6 via SPDIF. I want to get hold of a Behringer ADA8200 because I hear the converters are amazing bang for buck, plus it would be nice to have the extra preamps, but it leads me to some questions:

1. Will the A/D conversion be that much better than the ART DPS II?

2. The Focusrite doesn't have ADAT out so I'd have to figure out some way of getting that happening so that I can have stereo (mixbus) playback through the ADA8200 (which is possible right?). Is there some way of running just an ADAT output, like a USB - ADAT box such as the miniDSP one? Will the playback sound that much better than the Focusrite playback?

It's starting to get a bit complicated for me so any help is appreciated!

Matt

Hold up...

The ART DPS is a mic preamp... why exactly are you running your gap/isa mic preamps into another preamp?

Buy the behringer and plug all three of your current preamps into it... connect the adat out of the behringer into the adat in of the focusrite... done

mattrico 10th June 2019 08:15 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ajavalon (Post 14029795)
Hey Matt,can't speak too the difference in conversion between those units but you can certainly get a superb ADAT out by adding the A/D card to your ISA One.


Bit pricey and I don't think it would be enough channels?

mattrico 10th June 2019 08:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bgood (Post 14029998)
Hold up...

The ART DPS is a mic preamp... why exactly are you running your gap/isa mic preamps into another preamp?

Buy the behringer and plug all three of your current preamps into it... connect the adat out of the behringer into the adat in of the focusrite... done

I run the preamps into the inserts on the Art, so they're not affected by rhe Art preamps at all. This is just to use the converters in the Art, unadulterated by any other preamping before conversion to digital.
That solution would definitely work, just still thinking how I would get 2 ADAT out for mixbus playback through the behringer.

weezul 10th June 2019 11:40 AM

I use ADA8200 outputs for monitors, from ADAT signal from RME RayDAT. It works great. There's no strange things happening with ADA8200. Outputs and inputs are totally separate and have dedicated ADAT cables. If you can get ADAT to your ADA8200 then it will work as you expect.

Using a little USB to ADAT thing, basically will make that USB thing your interface, or will have to be used as aggregate IO (not recommended) and so becomes the weak link in your chain. Personally, I would sell the focusrite, the art, and plug in your preamps to the ADA8200 line inputs, and focus on getting a good ADAT interface. I love my RayDAT (internal PCIe soundcard) but it's a big investment for something with no preamps. Not sure if there's anything else like it though.

I still think the best idea is what was suggested though, all preamps to ada8200, input to focusrite, focusrite runs monitor outputs. You're still at mercy of focusrite drivers, but if they've been fine for you so far then it shouldn't be an issue.

Quote:

Will the playback sound that much better than the Focusrite playback?
Unsure, doubt I'd pass that one as a blind test personally but only you will be able to know that one.

bgood 10th June 2019 07:37 PM

Sounds like you need a new interface with more inputs and outputs, bud

It’s silly to spend money trying to jury-rig extra bang into that starter interface...

mattrico 11th June 2019 01:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by weezul (Post 14030196)
I use ADA8200 outputs for monitors, from ADAT signal from RME RayDAT. It works great. There's no strange things happening with ADA8200. Outputs and inputs are totally separate and have dedicated ADAT cables. If you can get ADAT to your ADA8200 then it will work as you expect.

Using a little USB to ADAT thing, basically will make that USB thing your interface, or will have to be used as aggregate IO (not recommended) and so becomes the weak link in your chain. Personally, I would sell the focusrite, the art, and plug in your preamps to the ADA8200 line inputs, and focus on getting a good ADAT interface. I love my RayDAT (internal PCIe soundcard) but it's a big investment for something with no preamps. Not sure if there's anything else like it though.

I still think the best idea is what was suggested though, all preamps to ada8200, input to focusrite, focusrite runs monitor outputs. You're still at mercy of focusrite drivers, but if they've been fine for you so far then it shouldn't be an issue.

Unsure, doubt I'd pass that one as a blind test personally but only you will be able to know that one.

Quote:

Originally Posted by bgood (Post 14031047)
Sounds like you need a new interface with more inputs and outputs, bud

It’s silly to spend money trying to jury-rig extra bang into that starter interface...



Some good advice here. The Focusrite plays ball, NOW, it's taken me years to get it working properly in Pro Tools and it turns out there was a Beta driver on the focusrite website that solved all my problems.

I like having the Art, I put a different tube in it and I like the sound now, don't want to get rid of it so it's better to just work out how to plumb it in to the rest of the gear.

Thinking I may as well get the ADA8200 and figure out later down the track how to get the ADAT out happening (which will help me in the long run with being able to map different outputs, which is something I'd like to be able to do as well).

The RayDAT is beyond my price range and the miniDSP thing doesn't look like being a good option. I found a Presonus Audiobox 1818 VSL for sale for cheap here ($250AUD), could be an option and gives me the ADAT in/out plus a heap more XLR inputs with reasonable preamps (and heaps of TRS outputs). Thinking thinking...

bgood 11th June 2019 02:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mattrico (Post 14031709)
Some good advice here. The Focusrite plays ball, NOW, it's taken me years to get it working properly in Pro Tools and it turns out there was a Beta driver on the focusrite website that solved all my problems.

I like having the Art, I put a different tube in it and I like the sound now, don't want to get rid of it so it's better to just work out how to plumb it in to the rest of the gear.

Thinking I may as well get the ADA8200 and figure out later down the track how to get the ADAT out happening (which will help me in the long run with being able to map different outputs, which is something I'd like to be able to do as well).

The RayDAT is beyond my price range and the miniDSP thing doesn't look like being a good option. I found a Presonus Audiobox 1818 VSL for sale for cheap here ($250AUD), could be an option and gives me the ADAT in/out plus a heap more XLR inputs with reasonable preamps (and heaps of TRS outputs). Thinking thinking...

The audiobox 1818 and the bigger Scarlett have very comparable options/quality... ideally, you have get an interface that has analog ins and outs as well as adat in and adat out... but, as always, but what you can afford

The RME multiface and digiface are amazing and cheap on the used market...

mattrico 11th June 2019 02:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bgood (Post 14031802)
The audiobox 1818 and the bigger Scarlett have very comparable options/quality... ideally, you have get an interface that has analog ins and outs as well as adat in and adat out... but, as always, but what you can afford

The RME multiface and digiface are amazing and cheap on the used market...

Unfortunately the Presonus is now sold, and even more unfortunate is that the RME stuff second hand is still expensive here in Aus. I started looking at other alternatives, there's not much else around that money in USB 2 (or above) that can do the same job. The Behringer Firepower and Uphoria stuff rates OK in terms of specs but I read people have too many problems with software and some of the "day to day" aspects of them. So not sure what else is out there, will have to keep an eye out on the market I guess.

bgood 11th June 2019 04:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mattrico (Post 14029595)
Hi All, I've just spent all morning trying to wrap my head around a new setup that I'm looking at trying.

Basically, I have 2 nice analog preamps (ISA One and GAP Pre 73) that are currently running into the inserts of an ART DPS II, being converted from there to digital, then into a Focusrite 18i6 via SPDIF. I want to get hold of a Behringer ADA8200 because I hear the converters are amazing bang for buck, plus it would be nice to have the extra preamps, but it leads me to some questions:

1. Will the A/D conversion be that much better than the ART DPS II?

2. The Focusrite doesn't have ADAT out so I'd have to figure out some way of getting that happening so that I can have stereo (mixbus) playback through the ADA8200 (which is possible right?). Is there some way of running just an ADAT output, like a USB - ADAT box such as the miniDSP one? Will the playback sound that much better than the Focusrite playback?

It's starting to get a bit complicated for me so any help is appreciated!

Matt

Why are you trying to have the behringer be the device through which you play your stereo buss? Your interface has a dedicated stereo pair for that.

So, buy the behringer and you’ll get 8 additional inputs into your rig... so, with it you’ll have 16 analog inputs, 10 of which can serve as mic preamps. I’d plug your ISA, GAP and ART into either the analog inputs of either the focusrite or behringer and call it a day... or, keep doing it the way you’re doing it now using the spdif... but, if the conversion on your art is the same tech they used on their ART MPA II digital i’d only use the analog outs of the unit..

the conversion on the behringer is the excellent and that’s why you’ll find these devils in all manner of high end rooms... the conversion on your focusrite and Art is a toss up... if I had to bet, I’d wager that the focusrite probably wins in a scientific geek testing, but, as mentioned above, conversion hasn’t been Art’s “deal”

weezul 11th June 2019 10:34 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mattrico (Post 14031709)
I found a Presonus Audiobox 1818 VSL for sale for cheap here ($250AUD),

PLEASE GOD NO.

This was without a doubt THE WORST interface I EVER had. The drivers were absolutely abysmal, unusable below 256 buffer, even ASIO4ALL worked better and finally allowed me to track without clicks and pops. The fact that's its quite old now and probably wont see any driver or FW updates might also be a problem.

My interface history-

M-Audio Fast Track Pro - was fine

MBox 2 Mini - was fine

M-Audio Profire2626 - was fine, IF the FW port was playing ball. I even bought an 'avid qualified' card with TI chipset and it would still routinely disconnect.

AudioBox 1818VSL - NEVER EVER worked, FW updates, driver updates, whatever. It was abysmal. I used it with ASIO4ALL for around 2 years, and spent a lot of time RX'ing pops and clicks from things like choir recordings, even tracking at 1024. The sad fact was, I was so used to how it was, that I adapted to it. I actually picked it over the UR824 at the time to save money. But my sanity was worth more than that to me in the end so....

RME RayDAT + UR824 + ADA8200 - Never had a single problem, windows or mac. It's honestly the last interface you will ever buy.

This was the interface that pushed me over the edge to the RayDAT. I would 100% test it on your machine before buying, especially if on Windows. I eventually swapped it for a UR824 and a RayDAT. A big investment for me, but it's still sat here 6 years later going strong. Never heard a pop or a click in 6 years even at 32 buffer.

mattrico 11th June 2019 10:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bgood (Post 14031885)
Why are you trying to have the behringer be the device through which you play your stereo buss? Your interface has a dedicated stereo pair for that.

So, buy the behringer and you’ll get 8 additional inputs into your rig... so, with it you’ll have 16 analog inputs, 10 of which can serve as mic preamps. I’d plug your ISA, GAP and ART into either the analog inputs of either the focusrite or behringer and call it a day... or, keep doing it the way you’re doing it now using the spdif... but, if the conversion on your art is the same tech they used on their ART MPA II digital i’d only use the analog outs of the unit..

the conversion on the behringer is the excellent and that’s why you’ll find these devils in all manner of high end rooms... the conversion on your focusrite and Art is a toss up... if I had to bet, I’d wager that the focusrite probably wins in a scientific geek testing, but, as mentioned above, conversion hasn’t been Art’s “deal”

Keen to get the converters happening on the output stage as well, thinking it's bound to be a notch up from the focusrite converters. Though obviously I can't use it with the focusrite for that, so I probably will have to get another interface and this whole idea starts to matter less (depending on what I end up with).

I ran my preamp into my focusrite today instead of my ART, apart from having a higher gain on the line setting of the Focusrite compared to the Insert of the ART, there didn't seem to be much difference caused by the converter change. Would have to experiment a bit more to properly determine this though.

mattrico 11th June 2019 11:02 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by weezul (Post 14032241)
PLEASE GOD NO.

This was without a doubt THE WORST interface I EVER had. The drivers were absolutely abysmal, unusable below 256 buffer, even ASIO4ALL worked better and finally allowed me to track without clicks and pops. The fact that's its quite old now and probably wont see any driver or FW updates might also be a problem.

My interface history-

M-Audio Fast Track Pro - was fine

MBox 2 Mini - was fine

M-Audio Profire2626 - was fine, IF the FW port was playing ball. I even bought an 'avid qualified' card with TI chipset and it would still routinely disconnect.

AudioBox 1818VSL - NEVER EVER worked, FW updates, driver updates, whatever. It was abysmal. I used it with ASIO4ALL for around 2 years, and spent a lot of time RX'ing pops and clicks from things like choir recordings, even tracking at 1024. The sad fact was, I was so used to how it was, that I adapted to it. I actually picked it over the UR824 at the time to save money. But my sanity was worth more than that to me in the end so....

RME RayDAT + UR824 + ADA8200 - Never had a single problem, windows or mac. It's honestly the last interface you will ever buy.

This was the interface that pushed me over the edge to the RayDAT. I would 100% test it on your machine before buying, especially if on Windows. I eventually swapped it for a UR824 and a RayDAT. A big investment for me, but it's still sat here 6 years later going strong. Never heard a pop or a click in 6 years even at 32 buffer.

Good to know. Will steer clear of the audiobox! It sounds like all the dramas I had with my 18i6, ASIO4ALL was the only way I could get it working in Pro Tools up until a couple of weeks ago when I discovered the beta driver. Wouldn't know how many hours I spent stuffing around and cursing because of that particular issue. Definitely not keen to repeat it. I may just have to save some more pennies to get the right piece of gear to solve this conundrum.

mattrico 12th June 2019 03:20 AM

Thinking I'll just bite the bullet and save up for an Audient ID22 first, and then supplement with the ADA8200 later. That way I get some awesome converters for playback and recording straight up, a couple of nice extra preamps, and am set for the future with the ADAT I/O.

mattrico 12th June 2019 03:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mattrico (Post 14034037)
Thinking I'll just bite the bullet and save up for an Audient ID22 first, and then supplement with the ADA8200 later. That way I get some awesome converters for playback and recording straight up, a couple of nice extra preamps, and am set for the future with the ADAT I/O.

Although it sounds like there are some quality control issues with this thing so now I'm not so sure...

Jim Vee 12th June 2019 07:30 AM

ADA8200 becomes a fantastic deal with much better sound quality if you get the BLA Mod.
I use a variety of converters and the ADA8200 with the BLA Mod sounds as good as the high end converters in the 1200 -2000 range.

Revive does a slightly different mod but equally impressive.

If you want a converter that needs no mod and has been doing ADAT Converters for 20 years look at Ferrofish.
The clock they use can also run as Master and is really nice if your running several units for additional I/O.

mattrico 12th June 2019 10:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jim Vee (Post 14034265)
ADA8200 becomes a fantastic deal with much better sound quality if you get the BLA Mod.
I use a variety of converters and the ADA8200 with the BLA Mod sounds as good as the high end converters in the 1200 -2000 range.

Revive does a slightly different mod but equally impressive.

If you want a converter that needs no mod and has been doing ADAT Converters for 20 years look at Ferrofish.
The clock they use can also run as Master and is really nice if your running several units for additional I/O.

Unfortunately the BLA mod starts to make things really expensive since I'm in Australia, so it's not really an option. (Not sure if there's anyone out here modding them)
Ferrofish also looks difficult to find out here so that's probably not an option either.
Started looking at the MOTU Track 16, can get a used one here for around $400 so that definitely has appeal, and the I/O + the built in FX make it extra appealing.

mattrico 21st September 2019 03:28 AM

So I finally got around to sorting out a solution (at least, a short to medium term one). I bought an M-Audio Profire 2626 to run as a standalone 8 channel ADAT unit, but once it arrived I realised how much more flexible it was than my Focusrite, so I ditched the Focusrite and bought a Behringer ADA8200 to run into the Profire (which is now my main interface). Seems to all work nicely, heaps of ins and outs now, the preamps are all nice (and boring), and the drivers seem to be playing ball!