Hello all! new to your board but not new to recording. been reading past posts on the forum looking for a little help on deciding a new setup for my modest home studio. ok, so i've been stumped about getting a new system for three years now. I was trained on 2" 24tk Studers, and have a bit of experience on ProTools HD and LE. but naturally i prefer the linear style recording format. i've been working with Roland's VS-1880 for six years now. the 18 track machine partially provides what i like - no computers and portability. At the time i bought it it wasn't feasable to get a quality 8tk simultanious PT mobile setup, so that's what i got. I've been pleased with its functionality, and the sound-quality post-mastering of the final product, but a project in 2003 really ended up turning me way off to the setup. Since then, i've been balking on getting a new, improved setup. My journeys in the real world at stores in the NYC tri-state area have taught me that music store employees don't know enough about either mid or hi end gear, only "inhouse" brands which raise their comissions more; or anything about Macs. i'm asking the internet for help. i'm so out of the loop with gear at this point that i cant even read the mags- they all reference gear that's too new for me to really know. so here's a little more about what i need it to do, and what i do: --I mostly work in the country, psych, 60's, folk, rock, classic rock, and all combinations of those four you can think of. --My current setup is 8 inputs, 18-trks (VS-1880) and i am comfortable working with ProTools LE; I'm comfortable installing sound-cards and such; i'm just not comfortable with the hard-core configuring you really need to do in order to really work with pro tools le. --I have a wide array of condenser & dynamic mics. Some i use on a daily basis: SM57s, AKG D112, AKG C3000s, SHURE SM-81 etc. i'm pretty satisfied currently, plan on getting a Sennheiser MD421 soon. --i mostly work with real instruments, and prefer them, but i am open to replacing the semi-functional MicroMoog i have... what i need: -portable or semi-portable recording system, able to record at least 16+ tracks. computer or analog. --16 tracks simultanious --be 100% Pro Tools LE, or compatible. this means i get a disc from one studio i can just dump it into my setup. ive seen those 24tk TASCAM and MACKIE , and ALESIS units are they worth the $$$? --I probably will be using an analog board and analog effects. i'll need some nice pre's in there, as i can probably only afford 1-2ch of nice tube pre. I've been thinking about an Allan & Heath for its pre's. or a 1604; something that could be rack-mounted is a big +. --if its a computer, its gotta be Mac. what would the specs be? (i have a G4 887(?)mhz 12-inch PowerBook, fully blown-out ram i've been using for Bias Peak for 3yrs and i'd prefer to get a new computer, but if this one can handle 16trk simulatious PT LE, then i'll get a new --obviously i'd need some recommendations for any i/o and ext hard drives. i guess the components i would need: -the recording software & any necessary hardware audio for I/O -the computer. -the mixer. -2 channels of tube mic pre / avalon combo type / or channel strip with eq, comp etc. -2 ch nice comp -4+ of decent compression. -a decent reverb tank. my budget is approx. US$1,000 - 4,000max. this $4k figure would include the computer, mixer, or mostly complete package. thanks rich!