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6k budget, need advice buying smart!

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by tross4, Sep 2, 2011.

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Interface Quinterface??

  1. Apogee Ensemble

    0 vote(s)
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  2. RME Fireface 800

    1 vote(s)
    50.0%
  3. Lynx Aurora 16

    1 vote(s)
    50.0%
  4. Focusrite Liquid Saffire 56

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. tross4

    tross4 Active Member

    Need your input! Im looking for a little guidance/insight on how to upgrade my 'semi-pro setup' to 'all-Pro'. I've been recording clients for the past two years with this setup, and I've come a long way in skills, but its time to upgrade audio "quality", particularly with regards to conversion. I only use 8 microphone inputs at any one time.

    Currently have:

    • Digi Rack 002 (as Interface, preamps and A/D conversion)
    • (2x) M-Audio Audio Buddy mic preamps
    • Imac 27'' 2Ghz Dual Core 2 GB RAM,
    • Various mid-level mics
    Goals:
    • More CPU power
    • Better A/D conversion
    • Pro level preamps
    Looking into:
    • Mac Pro Quad core (faster CPU, probably used), or PT HD1 system (in conjunction with current Imac)
    • Apogee Ensemble, Fireface 800 (preamps and A/D conversion handled)
    • Affordable pro quality preamps... any suggestions??
    I want to hear suggestions from those of you who used to be in my situation, have upgraded and been happy!
    Again, I have 6-7k to invest. Thanks! :cool:
     
  2. Mirrormix

    Mirrormix Active Member

    I think you might be expecting too much from the gear. You can definitely get it done with what you have, provided a great sounding space and some great players and skill choosing and placing the mics.

    However, If I were in your position I'd look into Lynx for conversion and interfacing. You can get a 16 channel Aurora with a Fire Wire card installed for like $3500. That's 16ch of very good A-D/D-A (simultaneous) for a very reasonable price. Also, the Aurora is flexible in that it can interface with PTHD with the proper card purchased, if that's your desire sometime down the road.

    Aside from that as your conversion, if you are determined to change preamps you might look into a True-Systems Precision 8 if "clean" is your thing. If not, then you might look into the Focusrite ISA 828 for a relatively subtle transformer based sound. Both are desirable, but you need to decide on the sound you want. If you want some of both you can always mix things up. There are numerous variations on the clean and character interpretation of preamp sound. It's all about what you ultimately like. This thread could go on for weeks with suggestions that other people think are cool.
     
  3. djmukilteo

    djmukilteo Well-Known Member

    I'd say you've already set yourself up for a Mac and ProTools or Logic.
    The Apogee seems to be the default interface for those users.
    FWIW...I use a FF800 on a Win7 x64 PC with Cubase so my opinion is only what I see a lot of Mac users buying...
     
  4. Ripeart

    Ripeart Active Member

    Grace makes some really nice preamps at prices that will leave you enough leftover to buy some nice converters.

    I guess I would ask primarily though is your recording space appropriately acoustically treated? As you probably already know the most important upgrade one can do is to treat an otherwise unfinished recording and mixing area with the right combination of traps, absorption, and diffusers.
     
  5. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Well-Known Member

    You could get a black lion audio mod on your 002's converters for a few hundreds bucks. Or still use the 002, and get and 8ch pre with digital outs, and connect via adat. I'd rather upgrade the converters, and pick up a some pre's w/ varying sounds. maybe and api transformer based, a manley tube pre, perhaps a grace for 'uncolored' pre? well there goes the 6k, lol.
    Maybe a motu interface, quad core mac, and 2-4 channels of high end pre's. or how bout 2ch pres, and a 2ch channel strip. This type of setup would be in your range, and offer quite a bit of versatilty. One cool thing about channel strips, is the ability of some to let you patch into each section individually, or one at least one at a time. The tone shaping ability of quality eqs/compressors can go quite far. I'd aim for a well rounded upgrade, rather than spending half the money on converters themselves. the interfaces from RME, and Apogee have excellent reviews regarding conversion. The motu 2408's i use are clear, and work fine at my studio.
    An "all pro" setup will usually include at least one high end large diaphragm condenser, even tho it won't be used for everything/all the time.
    Nice quiet cables are a must.
    You could even get a dual core intel mac on the cheap and get a nice processor card like the UAD-2.
    But none of this matters if your room/monitoring isn't up to the quality of your proposed equipment.
    Do yourself a favor and try the equipment in your space for a bit before you commit to spending your cash. Good luck.
     
  6. tross4

    tross4 Active Member

    Thanks guys!

    Thanks for the thoughtful suggestions guys. I did my research and picked up a
    • Mac Pro
    • Fireface UFX
    • Great River MP-2
    • Little Blondie microphones (2x)
    • Building two 2 by 6 bass traps (Owens Corning 703)
    I figure with this setup I can get a clean sound from the stock Fireface UFX pre's, good D/A A/D and some color with the GR MP-2.
    I heard the little blondies are killer, can't wait till they get here.

    Again, Thanks for the great input that got me pointed in the right direction!
     
  7. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Well-Known Member

    Cool man never hard of little blondies, but i'll check 'em out. i'm personally jealous of your new upgrade lol! good luck.
     

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