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HD24...Yea or Nay

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by Midlandmorgan, Jan 19, 2004.

  1. Midlandmorgan

    Midlandmorgan Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2002
    Sorry to troll, but I am soliciting guidance.

    I'm currently using Samplitude 7.21 as a do-all in the studio, but recently have been getting calls for remote work. Obviously, carting a complete DAW is out of the question...been toying with investing in the HD24, but before I even get one to demo, was hoping for feedback.

    For those of you who have or had the HD24: is it a decent enough machine, both sonically and ergonomically? Can I assign different inputs for each bank (8 analog, 16 lightpipe, for example)? Just how difficult is the process of transferring data via the HD24's firewire card?

    I've search the various pages pretty well, but these questions don't seem to be addressed...

    Thanks for your time.

    Ken
     
  2. levihoward

    levihoward Guest

    Ken-
    Without even going into the features of the machine, which I'm sure are great, I'd really think about where this machine will be in 5 years, let alone 2. With technology screaming down the pipe, it will be redundant very shortly, and your opportunity to resell it, if you desire, will be non-existant. If you plan on keeping the piece, don't think you'll ever want to move from the format, etc. it might be a good choice. Personally, the only pieces of hardware, as far as DAW's, that I'll ever invest in again is the good ol' computer and audio converters! Laptops are very inexpensive now-adays, the software is not only amazing, but becoming easier to use every day, upgrades are less expensive, etc. I take mine across town for sessions, large multitrack ones at that, and it performs quite well. It keeps all my home studio stuff and my remote stuff within one format that way as well, so less headache there...... I'd just really think it through.
     
  3. Paladyne

    Paladyne Guest

    My good friend does great recordings with one, I am getting one and like 10 heads on this site use one. Peer Pressure!!!
     
  4. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2001
    Location:
    Pacific NW
    Let the technology scream all it wants.The HD24 is a stable quality sounding,easy to use platform which will have support for many years to come.It already has since its based on the ADAT format in its OS.Replacement harddrives are cheap and an extra caddy is less than 30 bucks.The newest ones have better converters than the older models but they older ones still sound very very good.You can, with the proper front-end,mics and their placements and quality moniotring, make a very good sounding album with this.Radar is the best platform of this type and you pay for it.
     
  5. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2001
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    Considering thousands of people used ADAT's for many years to make many recordings, and that the HD24 is at least a full step up in quality, performance and reliability, it is hard to deny it as a solid and high value unit. And no matter how much changes in gear over the next 5-years, you will still have a usuable and reliable unit that you can do recording with. Thousands of people still buy and use ADAT's. Even if you only get 5-years of use out of it, you would still get your full money's worth. Only a fool would ever buy gear on the premise of resale value so never worry about that. In all things digital, time devalues it from the moment it is sold.

    There is a dedicated forum on Yahoo Groups for the HD24. Your specific questions should be answered there rather qucikly.
     
  6. Doesn't matter. Recorders always lose value as fast as a Ford on Firestones. 2" Machines selling for 25k ten years ago, sell for 3-5k now. Pro-Tools, ADAT, you name it, recorders are not the place to expect a financial return. Consoles, Outboard, and select effects units are the place for that.
     
  7. levihoward

    levihoward Guest

    Whoa, Nelly! Listen, I wasn't trying to say the HD24 was a bad choice- it's a very great piece and Alesis has a great track record. I was just trying to get Ken to think about his needs and various options. There are MANY folks, myself included, who have found themselves "dead-ended" in what was a perfect gear purchase just a few years earlier. Who would have thought that Alesis was on the brink of financial disaster just a short time ago- who would have put their money on them to see the other side? And I only use them as an example. Also, you need to consider that you will need to keep, or have access to, a HD24 machine for a LOOOOOONNNNGGGG time, if not for the rest of your life, for archiving purposes! What happens when they quit making caddies, when they decide to yet again raise the sonic standards. 5 years ago, people were very content recording to ADAT's here. If I began to pull up ADAT's now, my clientel would laugh and leave! AudioGaff, I agree it is foolish to buy gear SOLELY on resale alone, and I agree that within a year or two, even within a month or two, you can, and most likely will, make your money back, BUT I am from the school that you had better think ahead, and WAAAAYYYY ahead for that matter, on where your career is heading, what tools are expendable along the way, and what you will take to the grave with you as your defining pieces! Personally, I'd like to have the options to upgrade quickly and as inexpensively as possible. For the way I work, software has become my standard with my stash of favorite front-end and fx pieces on the side. For Ken, it may be better suited to go with the HD24. I was merely trying to get him thinking.......
     
  8. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2001
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    levihoward, I'm not juming on you and am glad your getting Ken to think hard. I am just trying to bring a complete and balanced perspective.
    It's great to think about the future and plan ahaead when you can. But at the pace of digital products, no one, not even the designers of the gear can forsee beyond about 5-years and don't even really focus that far themselves because of fast things change. On top of that, many new digital products are not bug free or matured enough on their first release, so jumping in early to be on top can cost you more than just extra cash to be on top, but also cost you grief and downtime. So when it comes to all things digital I've learned don't buy what you think you may need tommorow, buy what you know you need and can make full use of today.

    SO? What if they do? I fully expect at some point they will. The ADAT optical protocol is an embedded industry standard that will still be around for a long time. True, new multichannel protocols are comming to the market but you will see ADAT optical interfaces in or to them. I still have dozens of ADAT tapes with material on them that I'm not worried about. I am worried about CD-R's getting corrupt or becomming unreadable and hard disk crashings where I would loose EVERYTHING while on an ADAT tape that has been munched or broken can be spliced back to working condition with only a few minutes of lost material.

    Many products get obsoleted by the manufacture but that doesn't mean that they are now obsolete as a valued adding tool.
     
  9. levihoward

    levihoward Guest

    I agree, BUT, that is concerning the DESIGNERS, not the purchaser, meaning we have no control, other than suggestions to manufacturers, of what will or will not be in the marketplace at any given time. We DO have control, at least more control, to decide what we purchase, how we hope to grow in our business, what gear will not only allow us to work efficiently, but allow us to rise above the rest in a cut-throat industry. Constant evaluation and planning, even with gear, should be a must, at least with what knowledge we have afforded to us at that given moment. And that's probably why we see a constant change of amazing manufacturers selling themselves to other companies because they couldn't quite see around the corner quick enough and survive.....

    Again, I fully agree. It's foolish to have down time just because you have the first piece of gear on the block! I always allow a 6 month window to see what all the other suckers have had to go through and learn from them! :D

    WHAT?!? ARE YOU KIDDING!??! :D Lightpipe has been a standard for sure, and probably will be for a long time. But if you look at converters and interfaces now, there's a BIG issue. With 96k, which even now is beginning to be surpassed by 192k, you have to halve the lightpipe's ability to be able to record at those higher levels. So, instead of recording 8 tracks at once, you're down to 4 at once with 96k, and I'm guessing 192 is not even supported by lightpipe, although I could be very wrong on that one. If it is, you're probably only able to do 2 tracks at once. As for me, I still record at 24 bit/ 44.1k for the math/ sonic reasons, but I'm definitely watching to see where things are heading, knowing that what I love to use now will have to change, whether sooner or later. And as for chewed up tape where you only loose a minute or two??....... That's the difference in losing you client, your shirt, etc. It's totally unacceptable. I'm CONSTANTLY asked to bring mixes or songs back up for remixes for radio, album edits, etc. Tell your label president that the ADAT ate the tape, but we salvaged the 1st verse and the last chorus. YIKES :D

    .....all that said, go buy the damn HD24!!! It'll be great!!! ;)
     
  10. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2001
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    I don't see it as a big issue at all. Modern day converters are better than they were years before and will be even better in the future. The HD24 will never go beyond 96k so that is all that you ever have to worry about on that. If you don't like ot out grow the internal converters you use external ones.

    I would also argue that the far majority of people recording don't need or gain much from higher sampling rates. It is way more marketing muck to sell product than it is as value added. Lots of products that support higher bit rate and sampling rates is crap junk and don't sound nearly as good as other gear with lower bit and sampling rates. As long as CD 16/44.1 is the consumer standard, your not going to get the true and full potential of anything more.
    Many things can lose a client. Mistakes in losing data on any format happen. It is a fact and people know it. ADAT tapes are not alone in having problems or loss of material. Hard Disk, CD-R, Jazz or Zip drives, Analog multitrack, DAT and cassette all have had problems and I have had problems with them all at one time or another and have yet to lose a Client over it. Anybody that is smart has to backup and archive any format be it from ADAT tapes or anything else. But if you only back up hard disks durring downtime or at the end of the day, your still screwed if something happens in the middle of the session just like you would be with tape. But with tape you still usually have some sort of recovery that can be done in little time where with a hard disk, assuming it can be recoverd usually has to be done with time consuming skills, very specialized tools and in a clean room enviornment.
     
  11. levihoward

    levihoward Guest

    I agree with your above statements. I guess the most important comment I was trying to make was just thinking through all the available scenarios, based on how you work, other gear you use, etc..... If Ken's in Samplitude, why not keep it in Samplitude and save time, which at the end of the day is dollars, more time with your family..... It's all a Catch-22, it's just which is the least evil set of choices! :D
     
  12. Midlandmorgan

    Midlandmorgan Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2002
    I really appreciate all the input...I'm using Samplitude 7.21 as my editor, mix sometimes in Samp sometimes with a d8b...so the preliminary process after actual tracking will be to phsycially remove the drive (or dump via FW) and import to Samp...also spoke in detail with my 'gear guy' who stated the HD24 uses 5400 RMP drives - but from what I can see, these will be fairly common for quite some time to come...

    As for the higher rates...there was a VERY interesting poll at another site, in which the majority of respondants stated they still use 44.1 or 48...even though most of them have the higher rates, the belief seems to be the advantages are not really worth the extra $$$...

    Thanks, folks...I'm still deciding between the HD and a laptop...remember when this was simple?

    K
     
  13. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2001
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    I think that HD24 is better suited for those replacing ADAT's, Tascam MDM's, analog decks or those using an analog console. A laptop and firewire for the audio interface and external disk drives is a nice, neat, and compact but has it's limitations and downside weakness as well. I would rather have the ease of use and reliability of the HD24 than the laptop route.
     
  14. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2001
    Location:
    Pacific NW
    The issue with archiving is an interesting thing.Many people on the non-pro,home studio, side of things probably doesnt give this much thought.I still have masters from 1/2" 1/4"..1" 16trk,2" 24trk..dat masters...harddrives full of tracks...4 & 8 track cassette masters!....One day I'll archive it all.But on what?A harddrive stored in a non-ferrous environment seems to be the best way...but is it??Data disks?Lets open up this as a discussion eh what say Gaffster??!!

    As for Ken...really, for remote there isnt a better sounding more stable and economical platform than the Alesis.I had to throw in the economical simply because, yes..there is better...but its also a LOT more cash...and remote is remote....I remember doing isolated videao shoots with a Nagra and a stereo Sony mic.Great sounds!
     
  15. Rod Gervais

    Rod Gervais Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2003
    Location:
    Central Village, CT
    With all due respect to all involved in the discussion,

    Although I "grew up" on the Alesis ADAT - and feel they offer a good product for a reasonable price - I have a problem with the fact that the HD24 uses destructive editing - the same as with the ADAT tape.

    And this alone makes me shy away from this piece of gear.

    There is no reason with this technology that recordings and over dubs can't be undone - yet that (IMHO) is the one big drawback of the HD24.

    However - that having been said - for a live remote - this probably wouldn't be an issue regardless.

    As far as overall quality, when you consider "bang for the buck" it is hard to beat Alesis.

    Rod
     

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