Help me get my PC involved in post...

Discussion in 'Location Recording' started by hughesmr, Oct 10, 2006.

  1. hughesmr

    hughesmr Guest

    Hey all,

    I've been on the board for a while, and I want to solicit some help/opinion on how best to get my home PC (a Dell Pentium 4) involved in post-prod, editing and mastering. I know this will seem basic for many of you, but let me fill you in with where I am.

    I have done location acoustic recording for a few years, with pretty good success. On the front end, I know what's good....I have Schoeps MK21, MK2S, Gefell M300, Earthworks QTC1; Mogami cable; Lucid A/D; Benchmark and DAV pres. So, a clean transparent signal is very important to me.

    But here's the thing: I record 24/88.2 to an Alesis Masterlink on location (mix live to setero when n_tracks>2, using a Soundcraft board or the 4x2 mixer on the Benchmark). I also have done ALL my post on the Alesis (use it's on-baord DSP) INCLUDING editing. Needless to say, the editing can be a hassle, and I can't always get a seamless edit (e.g. a pop I can't edit away). I have applied verb using an outboard TC unit. I'm ready for more versatility in post...

    I still like using the Masterlink on location, but I would like to bring the audio from the Alesis onto my PC for all editing and post. I basically need to know:

    - recommendations for a good DAW for me. All I do is acoustic stuff (orchestra, chorus, instrumentalists). I want to do editing, crossfades, wave editing, EQ, normalization, and really good reverb. But I want NEUTRALITY....a CLEAN audio path and little in the way of bells/whistles that I won't use (MIDI, etc). If I ever do multitrack, I am confident I'll NEVER use more than 6-8 channels. [Oh, and for all this, preferably something not too outrageous. I know Samplitude is favored here, but wanted to consider other really good options as well, in addition to opinions on Samp.]

    - other hardware/interfaces I would need. Sorry, I'm really behind the curve on this. I just need to port digital audio from the Masterlink AFTER THE SESSION to my PC. The Alesis has AES/EBU and S/PDIF digital out.

    Thanks for helping!
  2. ghellquist

    ghellquist Member

    Hi Michael,
    a few ideas.

    First, getting the stuff into your computer. If I understand it right your best bet is using the computes CD drive. You write CD24 discs on the Alesis and transfer the disc to your computer. Each disc will hold about 20 minutes.

    Your second bet is to go through coaxial S/PDif. The requirements are not very stringent and just about any of the cards having the input should work. I am not up to date on what is available though.

    Once in the computer, I cannot say enough good things about Samplitude. It is eminently suitable to fixing up things such as fadeins and outs, removing pops, adding eq and a bit of reverb. Moving tracks around and finalizing your project. Finally simply burn a CD from inside the program. Very few DAW programs apart from SAM allows you to burn the CD from inside the program, most require you to export each track as its own file and then import into a separate CD burning application. Also, now Sam is available in a rather low-priced version (with a few limitations), 50 Euro should be about 65 USD. I think this will fulfill almost all of your needs. If needs be you can learn your trade there and go on to other programs later. My guess is that you will want to stay with Sam.

    An alternative may be Wavelab that does burn CD-s as well.

  3. lell010

    lell010 Guest

    Hi Michael
    I totally agree with Gunnar with one minor change. I use Pyramix Native.

    The big secret is limiting the duration of your takes so they will fit on a CD24. Using spdif means a lot of downtime while you transfer the recordings into the computer.

    Hope this works out for you.

    Best regards

    Larry Elliott
  4. Thomas W. Bethel

    Thomas W. Bethel Well-Known Member

    I too would suggest Samplitude or Wavelab.

    Never tried it but if these files are in AIFF then a program like WL should have no problem opening them. Alesis offers a program to allow you to create files that can be playing on the Masterlink see,39,0,0,1,0 . Wavelab can open almost any audio file that is currently out and can even open audio files were the header has been damaged as long as you know the sampling frequency and the bit rate.

    Hope this helps
  5. TeddyBullard

    TeddyBullard Guest

    Samplitude is my DAW of choice for live is free of bloat , clean, intuitive, ...just a great program.

    the masterlink has AES interface with your computer I suggest the ESI Juli@..

    Link removed
    juli@ has digital in(SPDIF) and auto sync/clock you are good to go. has two analog ins and two analog outs also..TRS or RCA(the card is reversable so you can use which ever ins/outs you want)

    other than Samp..I suggest looking at

    i dont reccomend anything I dont use.I use samplitude, have reaper, and have the esi juli@. all are rock solid.


    I also reccomend not using your music pc for anything other than music processing, and using the tweaks from
  6. JoeH

    JoeH Well-Known Member

    I would echo all of the advice given so far, and also suggest you post again over in the two Digital Recording forums:

    DAWs, and Computing, and Digital Audio Recording.

    In addition to the fine folks helping out here, there's a wealth of info and tips over there as well. :cool:
  7. hughesmr

    hughesmr Guest

    Hey folks,

    Thanks for the responses. It sounds like CD24s burned in the Masterlink is the way to go to transfer data.

    Re. Samplitude V8 SE: can you burn red book from within THAT program? It's not clear to me if that's in the feature set of the SE version. The Magix site has a PDF with info, but it's not downloading for me. Anyone with knowledge of this would be appreciated.

    Also, what is a good street price and source for Sam V9 classic?

  8. TeddyBullard

    TeddyBullard Guest

    wooops!(manual error!)
    for Samplitude V9, contact syntax..

  9. liuto

    liuto Guest

    As far as I know, Red book CD burning is possible only with the Samplitude versions "Master", "Classic" and "Professional". There is no CD burning from within with Samplitude SE, which is a kind of downscaled version. If you work mainly with stereo files, SAM Master would be a good choice and you can upgrade later to any other version.
  10. ghellquist

    ghellquist Member

    The Brochure says there is

     Red Book CD Authoring

    Page 5 of this:

  11. liuto

    liuto Guest

    But it also says:
    "By upgrading to SAM Classic you get:
    ..... Red Book CD Authoring (page 5)
    So I would say there is non of it in the Basic SE version.
    Maybe this logic is somehow corrupt !? :D

    Best Regards

    PS.: If you look at the comparison table at the end of the productinfo, you have it very clear: CD burning only in Classic, (Master) and Professional.
  12. ghellquist

    ghellquist Member

    I stand corrected. No CD burning in Sam LE. I am sorry for any inconvenience I might have created from my misunderstanding.

    The same program is available in a different shroud though, as Magix Music Maker Deluxe. (I do have a version 10 of this as backup on one of my computers). This has the same sound engine, not quite the same effects, but does indeed burn CD-s.

    With regards

    Gunnar Hellquist
  13. hughesmr

    hughesmr Guest

    Thanks everyone for your input. I see Sam V9 Classic or Master in my future.

  14. TeddyBullard

    TeddyBullard Guest

    very wise choice. youll love them.
  15. Sonarerec

    Sonarerec Guest

    There are two parameters you did not name that are critical in your decision: available time for production and money.

    Have you considered what your production time is worth? Does is make economic sense to streamline your workflow? How precisely (and efficiently) do you want to upload (if not recording directly into your software) and how precisely must you edit?

    The source-destination editing is available only on SADiE, Pyramix, Sequoia, and Sonic (which will not run on PCs). If there are others I am not aware of them.

    Until you make the price/time decision it will be difficult to narrow your choices so that you are confident that you are making the BEST choice for you, IMO.

    Being able to track directly into your DAW will allow you to bypass your Soundcraft board and will remove a layer of sonic diffusion (assuming it is NOT a 200B). And not having to mix to 2-ch on the fly will make your blood pressure go down significantly!

  16. DavidSpearritt

    DavidSpearritt Well-Known Member

    4 point editing, defining the in and out points of the Source take and the out and in points of the Destination take, while equal power crossfading across this definition is also possible, indeed, fast and easy, in the Wavelab montage.
  17. TeddyBullard

    TeddyBullard Guest

    SoundBlade is documented as using S-D editing too.
  18. Sonarerec

    Sonarerec Guest

    Soundblade is Sonic, and is Mac OS-only.

    Nice to learn that Wavelab will also do S-D. What is the x-fade editor like?

  19. hughesmr

    hughesmr Guest

    Hi David,

    Thanks for this info! Can you (or anyone) compare the neutrality of the Wavelab audio engine with Samplitude? Sam gets all the rave, and I'm looking for as uncolored as I can get (for the $...)

    Also, does Wavelab have good on-board reverbs for classical/acoustic material?

    Again, thanks again, all...
  20. DavidSpearritt

    DavidSpearritt Well-Known Member

    I have gotten into some of the most bitter arguments of my life about the sound or lack of it in a high quality modern DAW. I am of the opinion, and from my own tests, that the top DAW's all sound the same, due to the same 32 bit float engines used by them all. While you can argue stupid test cases where there might be one significant figure of difference creeping in after 48 channels, bounced 1000 times, the sound in normal operation will be indistinguishable. So for native 32 bit windows compiled DAW's, Wavelab = Sonic = Samplitude/Sequoia.

    I do know that Wavelab is very thoroughly on spec for all audio operations, has great audio integrity, meaning that no funny stuff is going on without the user knowing about it or requesting it.

    Wavelab has excellent plugin support, VST, DX. So SIR with great impulses gets you top shelf reverb for classical work.

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