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In need of a safety/back-up for live recordings Recorders, Players & Tape Machines
Old 26th September 2011
  #61
Quote:
Thats who i am referring to with the points i make, if you are intentionally looing for a box that can use inserts to record then of course the joeco is the go, id say most location recordist using splitters could find more value in the UFX with pre amps example i gave..
Just for the record, JoeCo offer different versions of the box, each featuring a different input format:
BBR1U - unbalanced analog I/O using inserts
BBR1B - balanced analog I/O (still has loop-thru)
BBR1A - Lightpipe and (unbalanced?) analog I/O
BBR1D - AES/EBU and analog I/O

so if I were running a standalone recording rig (which I am), I would probably choose one of the other models other than the "insert send" BBR1U. It should also be mentioned that the BBR is capable of recording at 88.2 or 96k on 24 channels, something the UFX cannot do.

I don't particularly care for most of the mic amps that feature ADAT outputs, and I already own 32 channels of Apogee conversion, so for me, the BBR's with digital inputs are attractive because they allow to take advantage of the conversion I already have. I also don't have need for the four mic amps on the UFX - not that there is anything wrong with them - but for me it would have been better to have four additional balanced line inputs.

I also like the fact that the digital versions of the BBR have the analog inputs in addition to the digital ones - if something were to go wrong with my converters, I could still feed the BBR right off the mic amps for 24 channels - something I would be unable to do with the UFX.

My biggest "issues" with the UFX are lack of sync - both between multiple units and with timecode; inability to use 24 analog inputs if the need should arise; and the lack of an easy standalone setup interface. Ok - so the laptop could function in this way, but I still want a real mixer if the 2-track really counts.

I'd need to bring a mixer for the JoeCo, but the analog passthrough is a big bonus if you happen to be mixing live-to-air or live-to-camera. Even if the multitrack fails midway, you will still have a broadcast mix (which is usually what matters most in that kind of situation - a computer crash taking you off the air is a very real and valid fear).

Hate to sound like a broken record (and I hope I don't come off as being "heated" because I can assure you I am perfectly calm and willing to agree to disagree), but really these two devices solve two different sets of problems. Don't assume that because something is or is not an issue for you, that everyone else's needs are the same as yours, or that everyone else's priorities should be the same as yours.

For me, a couple of JoeCo's would be a great solution to a number of problems that I have, and I don't think the price is unreasonable, though it is admittedly out of my range for this year - there are a number of other issues I need to solve first.

It would not "replace" my UFX: I see the need for both in my kit.
Old 26th September 2011
  #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobAnderson View Post
these two devices solve two different sets of problems
YES! They functionally overlap a bit but are quite different in features.

BTW, with ADAT and Analog inputs a UFX will record 20ch simultaneously at 88.2/96. If you add an AES input it's 22ch.

At 44.1/48 it will record 28ch, or 30ch with an AES input.
Old 27th September 2011
  #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by philper View Post
OK! Let me know when you do that big job with your UFX and NO laptop! None at all, not for setup or anything--left home! Stylistically we're far apart, I'm not into the preamps+laptop+interface thing anymore, but no problem there. Rock your UFX when you get one. I have a year's worth of flawless location recording with my JoeCo already!

phil p

I can tell you one thing, when you do a "big job" you dont take inserts as your signal!!! But i'll keep you posted on how i go,. Thanks.
Old 27th September 2011
  #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobAnderson View Post
Just for the record, JoeCo offer different versions of the box, each featuring a different input format:
BBR1U - unbalanced analog I/O using inserts
BBR1B - balanced analog I/O (still has loop-thru)
BBR1A - Lightpipe and (unbalanced?) analog I/O
BBR1D - AES/EBU and analog I/O
Which reinforces my point that they arent just marketed towards PA companies or people with in house systems in control of console inserts like you were saying.. There is a large cross over aimed towards people who are your average location recorders.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobAnderson View Post
It should also be mentioned that the BBR is capable of recording at 88.2 or 96k on 24 channels, something the UFX cannot do.
Without owning one myself, I think you are wrong on this.. I have just read the UFX manual and it says it can do up to 34 channels at 96khz, 60 at 48khz and 16 at 192.. (page 83).

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobAnderson View Post
My biggest "issues" with the UFX are lack of sync - both between multiple units and with timecode; inability to use 24 analog inputs if the need should arise; and the lack of an easy standalone setup interface. Ok - so the laptop could function in this way, but I still want a real mixer if the 2-track really counts.

I'd need to bring a mixer for the JoeCo, but the analog passthrough is a big bonus if you happen to be mixing live-to-air or live-to-camera. Even if the multitrack fails midway, you will still have a broadcast mix (which is usually what matters most in that kind of situation - a computer crash taking you off the air is a very real and valid fear).
But you can have 24 outs easily if you bought 2 x 8 channel pre amps and just used the TRS outs like i mentioned.. You are welcome to dislike that idea because you already own other pres and you dont like ADAT pre amps for whatever reason, but the fact is most people arent of that mindset and the majority would welcome the extra features for the same expense.

Also Id suggest a UPS is probably your best bet if you are living in fear of power failure.. I dont know why people are so quick to presume the joeco power will fail while you maintain power on everything else, its a highly unlikely scenario. Unless you leave power points unsecured near drunk people, in which case you have it coming to you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobAnderson View Post
Don't assume that because something is or is not an issue for you, that everyone else's needs are the same as yours, or that everyone else's priorities should be the same as yours.
ironically i thought exactly the same thing about what you just said to me, you mentioned a list of reasons which applies to you and i think resembles a fairly isolated case, but the generic scenario that applies to most people is what i have been referring to all along. Most people dont have a problem ADAT outs and most people would be happy to gain 16 extra pre amps for the same price, i guarantee it.

Besides that if you want timecode and increased track count, i'd make the point again that the X48 is far better value.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobAnderson View Post
For me, a couple of JoeCo's would be a great solution to a number of problems that I have, and I don't think the price is unreasonable, though it is admittedly out of my range for this year - there are a number of other issues I need to solve first.

It would not "replace" my UFX: I see the need for both in my kit.
Its interesting you are going out of your way to tell me why the joeco is so great and yet you own a UFX ?? Also im not going to change my opinion because someone can show me a couple of isolated examples why joeco may be appealing.. As long as they keep trying to charge the prices they are they will be a rip off in my opinion.. I dont have a problem with the unit or its features but it should be $1500 for the basic model not $2600.. Telling me about insert passthrough or a facility to maintain analog signal in the event of power failure is fine but it doesnt justify their prices in my eyes.. I personally find that type of pricing to be arrogrant from an unkown company when you have reputable brands offering comparable devices for less..
Old 27th September 2011
  #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelPatrick View Post
YES! They functionally overlap a bit but are quite different in features.

BTW, with ADAT and Analog inputs a UFX will record 20ch simultaneously at 88.2/96. If you add an AES input it's 22ch.

At 44.1/48 it will record 28ch, or 30ch with an AES input.
I may be mistaken on this because i physically dont own a UFX yet, but page 83 of the manual says the following...

"At a sample rate of 48khz, up to 60 channels (inputs and outputs), at 96Khz 34 channels, at 192Khz 16 channels can be selected.. the actual number of channels that can be used error free depends on the media"

Then it goes on to say on the next page that the toughest scenario for the UFX to record is 34 channels at 96Khz and this is usually only possible with a hard drive (as opposed to a USB thumb drive)..
Old 27th September 2011
  #66
Not sure how a box that only has 30 inputs at best can somehow magically record four more at 96k...heh
Old 27th September 2011
  #67
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i thought that also, i presumed it is something to do with an internal software loopback that makes it 34.. Im just quoting the manual though.. I havent read the whole thing but i imagine somewhere towards the beginning they outline how they manage 34..
Old 27th September 2011
  #68
I think you may be confusing the fact that the UFX can record both its inputs and its outputs. While this does yield a higher track count, the UFX is limited to a maximum of 30 inputs (not that this is a "limitation" - it is pretty insane that you can get a 30-input recorder in a single rackspace).

I think Michael Patrick has it correct. SMUX would cut the ADAT inputs in half so 8 ADAT + 12 Analog + 2 AES = 22.
Old 27th September 2011
  #69
Gear Head
Quote:
Originally Posted by ebulb View Post
i thought that also, i presumed it is something to do with an internal software loopback that makes it 34.. Im just quoting the manual though.. I havent read the whole thing but i imagine somewhere towards the beginning they outline how they manage 34..

It can record 30 inputs. The rest is outputs so it's not really a 60 channel standalone recorder. It has "loopback" function so you can route the output mix back to your DAW to record your submixes.
Old 27th September 2011
  #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by molownia View Post
It can record 30 inputs. The rest is outputs so it's not really a 60 channel standalone recorder. It has "loopback" function so you can route the output mix back to your DAW to record your submixes.
The UFX does have 30 inputs, but at 96 hHz you only have access to half the ADAT inputs (typical SMUX situation), so the UFX is limited to 22 inputs at 96 (12 analog, 2 AES, 8 ADAT)

Quote:
Originally Posted by RobAnderson View Post
Hate to sound like a broken record (and I hope I don't come off as being "heated" because I can assure you I am perfectly calm and willing to agree to disagree), but really these two devices solve two different sets of problems. Don't assume that because something is or is not an issue for you, that everyone else's needs are the same as yours, or that everyone else's priorities should be the same as yours.
This is far too reasonable a position. My unit is better! heh
Old 27th September 2011
  #71
Gear Head
Quote:
Originally Posted by neirbod View Post
The UFX does have 30 inputs, but at 96 hHz you only have access to half the ADAT inputs (typical SMUX situation), so the UFX is limited to 22 inputs at 96 (12 analog, 2 AES, 8 ADAT)
That's correct, I was talking about 44.1/48 kHz. My point is that although it can technically record 60 channels at 44.1/48, in reality half of those are only submixes. Still impressive. Two weeks ago I recorded live 22 channels at 44.1 for over 2 hrs to PT9 and to regular consumer HDD connected to the front USB port as a backup. It worked perfectly, no problems at all, no errors. I love this unit.
I wouldn't call it a standalone recorder, it's a powerful audio interface which can be used as a standalone recorder. It's hard to deal with a bigger track count without a computer and TotalMix software.
Old 27th September 2011
  #72
Quote:
Originally Posted by molownia View Post
That's correct, I was talking about 44.1/48 kHz. My point is that although it can technically record 60 channels at 44.1/48, in reality half of those are only submixes. Still impressive. Two weeks ago I recorded live 22 channels at 44.1 for over 2 hrs to PT9 and to regular consumer HDD connected to the front USB port as a backup. It worked perfectly, no problems at all, no errors. I love this unit.
I wouldn't call it a standalone recorder, it's a powerful audio interface which can be used as a standalone recorder. It's hard to deal with a bigger track count without a computer and TotalMix software.
Just curious - what laptop and OS are you using? Do you feed the computer via USB or Firewire?

I had some initial problems with ProTools 9 on my MBP using various interfaces (including the UFX) so for live stuff I still don't quite trust it, though that was before several rounds of updates to both PT and the OS.
Old 27th September 2011
  #73
Gear Head
Quote:
Originally Posted by RobAnderson View Post
Just curious - what laptop and OS are you using? Do you feed the computer via USB or Firewire?

I had some initial problems with ProTools 9 on my MBP using various interfaces (including the UFX) so for live stuff I still don't quite trust it, though that was before several rounds of updates to both PT and the OS.
I'm using MB Pro with 10.6.8 feeding the computer through FW. No issues.
Old 27th September 2011
  #74
Are you recording to a FW drive and daisy chaining through to the Mac, or to a USB drive (from Pro Tools)?
Old 27th September 2011
  #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobAnderson View Post
I think you may be confusing the fact that the UFX can record both its inputs and its outputs. While this does yield a higher track count, the UFX is limited to a maximum of 30 inputs (not that this is a "limitation" - it is pretty insane that you can get a 30-input recorder in a single rackspace).

I think Michael Patrick has it correct. SMUX would cut the ADAT inputs in half so 8 ADAT + 12 Analog + 2 AES = 22.

I realised anything above 30 isnt a physical input. I forgot that 96Khz halves your ADAT ins though and therefore you arent going to get 30 real tracks at 96Khz and its only capable of 22. Thats fair enough, personally i can still live with 22 at 96Khz.
Old 27th September 2011
  #76
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Quote:
Originally Posted by potscrubber View Post
OP also needs to test whether his/her interface will pass audio if the computer crashes or freezes, and the answer may be different depending on the type of crash. For this reason splitting after the mic pre or A/D is the common practice. Apols if that is not very helpful information for you.


That I'm not entirely sure of. The interface works as a stand alone mixer and the outs can all be direct outs. I think it should still pass the audio through even if the computer crashes. If someone knows how to make my DAW crash on purpose, then i could test it.

On another note. Thanks to everyone who replied. I guess there aren't many options. I'll try to find a used ADAT cheap since price is my primary concern. I don't want to wait to save up for something more expensive to just have my comp crash again and lose a show.

Last edited by LSDj; 27th September 2011 at 09:19 PM.. Reason: forgot quote/spelling
Old 28th September 2011
  #77
Gear Head
Quote:
Originally Posted by RobAnderson View Post
Are you recording to a FW drive and daisy chaining through to the Mac, or to a USB drive (from Pro Tools)?
Last time I used Firewire connection to MB Pro and PT9 and both drives were USB. I'll test it with USB and FW drive too when I get a chance.
Old 28th September 2011
  #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by potscrubber View Post
OP also needs to test whether his/her interface will pass audio if the computer crashes or freezes, and the answer may be different depending on the type of crash. For this reason splitting after the mic pre or A/D is the common practice. Apols if that is not very helpful information for you.
Actaully, the way RME writes its drivers I feel I can safely use their units as "splitters." This is a major feature of RME units that is often overlooked.

I did extensive testing of the FF800 and Orpheus over a year ago, checking for both audio quality and driver stability (search my old posts on this if interested). I also did simlar, but less extensive, tests on the UFX. I found that RME's drivers are designed so that audio continues to pass through uninterrupted and with no audio glitch if the computer crashes or the firewire cable is removed. This applies to the analog and digital outputs, and also the USB direct recording feature on the UFX. Others on the main UFX thread report similar stability for the USB recording.

I personally am comfortable taking some kind of backup feed from RME units as I have *never* had one crash nor would I expect it to. My computer has crashed, but not the RME. For location recording purposes I think of it as rack mounted digital mixer that just happens to have a firewire connection.

For the record this was *not* true for the Orpheus, which had a dropout of several seconds in its output signals if the connection to the computer is lost. I went back and forth quite a bit with their very responsive support team before they acknowledged that the glitches I heard were not "errors" but were normal behavior the way the Orpheus interacts with the computer. To my knowledge they never addressed this issue.
Old 28th September 2011
  #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LSDj View Post
Hello All,
I have been doing a bit of live recording at shows. Right now I use a Roland Octacapture and a Macbook pro. Recently my macbook froze and I lost the whole set I was recording. My interface has 8 direct outputs and I would like to route them to something like an Alesis HD24. I don't want a zoom or one of those porta-studios like that. What I am looking for should be rack mountable. The HD24 is a bit pricey and I was wondering if anyone knows of something different. Something I can have for a back up that is reliable in case my mac crashes again (which according to loads of people never happens...). I looked around, but there isn't any new products like it. I've seen the RME:Fireface UFX, but that's way too expensive and does so many things I don't need. I welcome all your suggestions. Thanks.
IMHO, the best backup device to use is an identical one as the main unit.
Perhaps a different machine can be used when you're backing up the back up recorder.

I'm big on having multiples of the same thing, this way if something goes wrong with the main unit, you're not stuck with something that the original device was not.

That said, your case is a bit different since your using a laptop.

Any decent hard disk recorder will work just fine.
Those Alesis HD24XRs are killer recorders for the bread.
They can be found used for a pretty okay price.
Deals are out there, you just have to look for them...

Case in point I just grabbed a Tascam X48 in great condition on eBay for $1500.00 USD.

It shall make for a great back up machine to my other X48s.

I know you're not into using a portable recorder, but the Tascam DR680 may be just the ticket for you.
Old 28th September 2011
  #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ebulb View Post
I can tell you one thing, when you do a "big job" you dont take inserts as your signal!!! But i'll keep you posted on how i go,. Thanks.
Guess again, dude!! Been there, done it! Rock your UFX--I'm going to get one too!

phil p
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