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Br-864 Virtual Track Questions

Discussion in 'Recording' started by PeeJay, Apr 19, 2005.

  1. PeeJay

    PeeJay Guest


    I bought the BR-864 a couple weeks ago. So far it's going pretty good. One thing that isn't going well is the fact that Boss has no drivers for Win98se machines - so if you buy this recorder - you must have either WinME, 2000 or XP to import or export files. I was forced to go out and buy a card reader in order to import and export files. But it seems to work, although it's a major kludge.

    My main question here is about the V-Tracks on the machine.

    Am I to understand that I can record on all 64 tracks? Is that true? I know that each track has 8 V-Tracks along with it. For a total of 64 tracks. Does that mean I can have all 64 tracks mixed down to 8? What about seperate panning for each V-Track? Is that an option?

    Anyone who is good with this V-Track stuff I would like to hear from.

    Thanks much!
  2. ErichS

    ErichS Active Member

    Unfortunately, while you can record on all 64 tracks, you can only have 8 tracks avaliable for mixdown at any one time.

    If you needed more than 8 tracks for a song you could have extra tracks on the virturals and create submixes of completed tracks. But this technique requires careful planning and restricts mixing possibilities once the submix is created.

    Good Luck
  3. karbomusic

    karbomusic Active Member

    Erich is correct...

    only 8 tracks can play back at once. I don't know this machine well but the earlier VS series that did this would allow you to "splice" different sections of the same track. In other words if you had 8 virtual takes of a solo on track 1, you could pick which virtual track plays when on that track as the song plays allowing to to do a multi-take comp track.

    It is still the same as Erich described even if you do the above since no two v-tracks on track 1 can play simultaneously.

    Best regards-

  4. PeeJay

    PeeJay Guest

    Thank you Karbo and Erich for the responce.

    I kind of thought that was the deal - but I just wanted to hear it for sure. I'm used to tape machines so this digital stuff is sort of new for me.

    So that sort of leads to another minor question - with tape machines, bouncing tracks starts to make the sound of those bounced tracks sound weak. Do I have to worry about this with digital recording also?

    I did do a song that had 10 tracks with the Br-864 - in which I bounce 8 tracks down to 2. I didn't really notice that same effect with the Br-864. But I am assuming that if I were to keep bouncing those tracks would eventually get weak too. Is that a correct assumption?
  5. karbomusic

    karbomusic Active Member

    I don't know that machine... but basically if it is recording uncompressed (data compression not audio compression) then no. However, if it is compressed then eventually it will degrade...

    Some of the others here will know the newer gear better. I believe Roland used to use "Rdac" compression which is nearly lossless and better than "Atrac" compression. I'm a little out of my league on this question as Im a couple years behind the times. Gonna take me another month to catch up..

    Eitherway, no data compression = no loss (for the most part) so check the manual. It should state it in the specs. Even if it does degrade it will be nowhere near as bad as when bouncing with analog tape. Again, check with those who have kept up, I don't want to misinform you!

    Best regards

  6. PeeJay

    PeeJay Guest

    Thanks again there Karbo!

    Yeah I'll have a look at the specs and see.
  7. PeeJay

    PeeJay Guest

    I looked at the specs but didn't notice any reference to that. Oh well, so far it doesn't seem to degrade like the old Tascam 244 that I have. (Total Old School)
  8. karbomusic

    karbomusic Active Member

    I looked at the specs on on Roland's site. They don't seem to offer that information freely. They do reference "Data Type" where the choices are HiFi(MT2), Standard(LV1) and Long(LV2) and I am guessing that means compression scheme. If it were uncompressed they should be stating it somewhere but they are not. I spent some time training at Roland a few years ago but this gear wasn't out yet then.

    I also played with a little math and came to the loose conclusion that their stated total time per flash card is greater than the same for uncompressed wav files taking up the same amount of space which also points to a compressed format.

    However, for the uses this machine is intended you should be just fine. Any apparent loss shouldn't be as anywhere near as quick or noticable as analog. So I wouldn't fret at all. You'll get much more value and enjoyment out of it as a whole and should be able to do a certain number of bounces without any worries at all.

    Best regards-

  9. jimimedforth

    jimimedforth Guest


    I to have recently purchased a br864 and have been "through the mill" so to speak myself. The manual is ok but does not go into the detail of the features of the unit.

    The best way to answer your question is as follows:

    If you lay down 8 tracks you can then bounce (mix) those 8 tracks down to 1 track. (eg. to track 1).
    You are then left with track 1 containing all the data you have bounced (the 8 original tracks) thus freeing up the remaining 7.

    If you repeat this process for all the remaining tracks it will give you the 64 tracks ( 8 x 8 = 64).

    Hope this helps, i know its confusing!


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