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help with alesis adat hd24xr...

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by esquire97, Apr 16, 2006.

  1. esquire97

    esquire97 Guest

    i recently rented an alesis adat hd24xr to record a live performance. things went fine until the event was over, and i lost power to my workstation before i could save the files, or even stop the recorder.

    long story short, i'm trying to see if anyone knows, or knows someone who might know, how to attempt to recover my lost data. again, the recorder was running fine through the entire performance, so the data has to be there in some format. i attempted to ftp in to the drive using the rj45 connector, but all i could find were the header files. if anyone knows anything about i might be able to perform a recovery, i would certainly appreciate the help.

    thanks in advance...
  2. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Guest

    The Alesis offers a FireWire adapter interface that allows one to remove the disk drive from the machine. Once the disk is removed and connected to the FireWire adapter, you can connect it to your computer and dump all 24 channels into your computer via the FireWire port and into a substantially sized storage hard drive within your computer. DO NOT ATTEMPT THIS WITH THAT DISK DRIVE WITHOUT THEIR PROPRIETARY FIREWIRE ADAPTER! Because, Alesis uses a proprietary disk file format that negates the use of defragmentation programs. I.e. it is not FAT 32 or NTFS as is most commonly used for IBM clones and their similar Macintosh cousins. So it is not compatible with any computer based system, " out of the box".

    On that particular unit, if you were recording, it's on the disk drives. Unlike other computer-based systems that require you to " save files" at the end of recording, the Alesis is more analogous to its analog tape predecessor. I.e., It should have made no difference if the power was interrupted at the end of recording, it should still be on the drive and recoverable, at least from the FireWire based adapter? Not sure why you cannot play it back on the original recorder however? You may want to contact Alesis customer support?

    Computers are our friends! RIGHT, SURE....YOU BET....
    Ms. Remy Ann David
  3. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    Remy's right,

    The data files are still there.

    Let me echo the "be sure you don't take that drive to anothe computer!" thought.

    Try this first; do a factory reset... When powering up the unit from the front power button, simultaneously hold the Record and Play buttons. Hold them for about 5 seconds... or until you see the "Restoring Factory Defaults" message.

    This might get the recorder back on track to get your tracks.

    Get ahold of the Firecard adapter and THEN transfer your files... the ftp process is killer slow! (Unless it's just a couple of tracks, even then, your time is worth something, right!?!)

    Good luck!

  4. Gilliland

    Gilliland Guest

    My best suggestion is that you join the HD24 group on Yahoo and ask about it there. You'll find others who have been down this road ahead of you. In fact, anyone who owns or uses an HD24 should be a member of that group.

    Unfortunately, none of the suggestions above will work to recover your files. The HD24 does require you to press "Stop" to save your files. If the power is interrupted before you press Stop, the data will not be recoverable through any normal means. That's why it's so important to use a UPS with hard disk recorders.

    The data is still on your disk, but recovering it will be VERY difficult. It has been done successfully by others, but there is no cookbook approach. It will require you to do some very detailed low level disk analysis and recovery work. There is no simple fix.

    Come join the Yahoo group. Search its archives for this topic - there have been a number of discussions of it in the past, some this year, and some in past years. Good luck.
  5. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Gilliland is correct -

    Even with the firewire device, your files are not recoverable unless you can access the drives via a linux/unix based device.

    I can't echo his statement enough - use a UPS. Even a cheap one will save you time and frustration.

  6. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    Ooooo, that stunks!~

    I was misinformed. I was given to understand that this was one of the slick side-benefits of the Alesis HD24... "even if you loose power, the files are recoverable." My "ASS"umption was that the common reset to defaults would reindex the drive and the files would be there... still got some major learning curve ahead... big shock there, huh?

    Thanx for the headsup on the HD24 group! (Just signed up)

    ... and even MORE thanx for the UPS advisory!!! :cool: I've got a couple hangin' out round here... Gonna go plug em' in in a few minutes.

    On the curve,
  7. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Actually, that's what has me puzzled about this post. When I got my HD 24, it was shortly after a product debacle with a Tascam HD recorder. I lost power to it and it threw away all of my data!!!

    So, I bought my HD24 from a local dealer who was more than willing to let me return it if I didn't like it. I plugged 'er in, began recording 8 tracks and literally yanked the plug right out of the back of the unit.

    Lo and behold, all 8 tracks had recorded and all of the data up until I yanked the plug was securely in tact. It was that moment that began my love affair with my HD24 and the very reason that you'll have to pry it out of my cold dead lifeless hand to ever get mine away from me.....

    Oh well, I guess wierd things happen some times...

  8. Gilliland

    Gilliland Guest

    The HD24 will retain its data once "Stop" has been pressed. It will also retain its data if you are recording over tracks that have already been allocated. So some people advocate preallocating your recording space by making a blank recording of sufficient length before beginning to record actual audio. If you then record into that preallocated space, the HD24 will retain it even if it loses power in the middle of recording.

    But if you are making a new recording into unallocated space, you absolutely MUST press "stop" to get the HD24 to update its allocation tables. If the power drops while the unit is still actively recording, the data may still be on the disk, but there will be no way to access it. For all intents and purposes, it is lost.

    If you believe that your test gave different results from this, then I strongly recommend that you go back and rerun your test.
  9. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Just did - got the same results as before... :D

  10. Gilliland

    Gilliland Guest

    Well, you'll have to tell us just what you're doing differently than the scores of other people who have lost their recordings this way. I really don't think they're making it up.
  11. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    Could this be a firmware thing?

    Just a thought.

  12. Gilliland

    Gilliland Guest

    I doubt it. The Alesis team that develops the HD24 are regular participants in our HD24 group on Yahoo, and they've never mentioned any such firmware changes. And considering the number of people who have encountered this failure, I'm pretty sure they'd have brought it up if they'd figured out a way to solve it. Alesis has been pretty good about making firmware improvements and bug fixes, but this is one issue that can't be readily fixed in software.
  13. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Hmm.. All I know is that I've never had this problem...

    I've had the unit since 2 weeks after it was introduced to the market and never once updated the firmware.
  14. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    This is interesting to hear, since I too have an HD24. A similar situation happened to me in that a power loss occured(I kicked out the plug under the desk) while recording some test tracks. The tracks were unlocked at 24 and nothing other than the redlight was on. Analog input . The tracks came back up at restart and were no good to me, but I could play them back,monitor was as regular,I could have tracked to them, editted them. They were only the length(of course) that the power was on....there were NO preliminary tracks though I DO name my tracks before I begin recording but establish no particular length for them. Perhaps the NAMING does the trick....Interesting thread.
  15. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    I've gotta think that there's something about it, other than the naming...

    I'm gonna try a couple of permutations in settings tomorrow (Sun) afternoon or evening. (Got some honey-do to take care of during daylight...)

    1. Digital input; 24 tracks@48, No Name (As it comes out of the box)
    2. Digital input; 24 tracks@48, Named Song
    3. Analog input; 24 tracks@48, No Name
    4. Analog input; 24 tracks@48, Named Song
    5. etc.

    After 2 minutes, I'll pull power. (I've got two units and they're both still under warranty)

    It might be Monday before I can post the results, but I'll post what I get.

  16. Gilliland

    Gilliland Guest

    It IS interesting. There have been so many people who have lost tracks this way that it would be VERY interesting to learn if there is a technique that helps the HD24 avoid this problem.

    Whatever testing you do, please post your results to the HD24 group. Let's get the benefit of the entire HD24 community to discuss and analyze this. Here's the group:


    We've got over 1200 members, so it's a pretty lively group of HD24 owners. Might as well take advantage of that much knowledge and brain power!
  17. esquire97

    esquire97 Guest

    yahoo group was a life saver...

    thanks for your tips fellas, i ended up calling alesis tech support who pointed me to the yahoo group. i thought it was funny that the guy on the phone hadn't visited the site enough to tell me, but there ya go.

    anyways, after trolling the group for a bit i found the solution involving block copies, and was able to recover the entire performance! thanks for your input and direction, i definitely recommend the group, there are a lot of very knowledgeable users who have come up against any number of problems. i recommend searching there for a fix before bothering with tech support.
  18. Gilliland

    Gilliland Guest

    Re: yahoo group was a life saver...

    Excellent! I'm so glad to hear that you got your recording back. Not everyone has been so lucky. That's great news!

    I'd recommend that you document the steps that you took and post them back to the group - it will help the next person who has a power failure.
  19. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    As promised, I'm posting the results of my "Alesis HD24 Power-Loss" Test.

    This test is the result of a posting to the "Pro Audio Gear" forum at Recording.Org in which a member had experienced a power failure during a recording session and was at that time unable to recover the audio files.

    The member was eventually able to recover said files, but not before a series of comments was made whereby another forum member (and RO Moderator) had stated that he was able to recover files after a power failure.

    As a relatively new HD24 owner, I was under the impression that the "automatic" file recovery was a normal situation with the HD24 family of recorders.

    First let me state that I am hopeful that the results will spawn a couple of other HD24 users to either take hede of the results, and/or continue to explore why some users of the HD24 system get different results.

    While each test in the permutation was different, the result was the same. TOTAL data loss as detailed!

    The test setup and specifications:

    OS Version 1.20
    Boot Version 1.00

    HDD: Factory Installed Unit
    Maxtor 2F040L0 (41.1 Gb)
    File System 1.10

    Clock - Internal
    Monitor - Auto

    Test audio was captured for a period of time between 30 and 60 seconds. The same audio source was used for all tests. At the end of each time frame, power was summarily pulled at random, to simulate a typical power outage... (and because it took a random time to walk around to the back of the unit.)

    After each power outage, the power switch on the unit was turned off and then power was restored as normal. On power up, the Factory Default reset was pereformed.

    Phase 1 - Various configurations of digital input. Tracking 8, 16 and 24 channels of ADAT lightpipe audio. As I do not currently have access to a 96KHz lightpipe source, I was unable to substantiate a valid test set at 88KHz or 96KHz.

    In Phases 1 and 2, A new song was created in the usual manner, without naming the song, as had been proposed as possible variable.

    Each test, I attempted recovery of the tracks using the Onboard Scan & Repair Utility. The utility failed 100% of the time to yield a recovered set of tracks.

    After each test, the HD24 was regularly power cycled with a Factory Default reset and the "corrupted" song was deleted and a new song created according to the table(s) below.

    Test 1 - 24 tracks@48KHz
    Test 2 - 24 tracks@44KHz
    Test 3 - 16 tracks@48KHz
    Test 4 - 16 tracks@44KHz
    Test 5 - 8 tracks@48KHz
    Test 6 - 8 tracks@44KHz

    Phase 2 - Various configurations of analoge input. Tracking 8, 16 and 24 channels of analoge audio.

    Test 7 - 24 tracks@48KHz
    Test 8 - 24 tracks@44KHz
    Test 9 - 16 tracks@48KHz
    Test 10 - 16 tracks@44KHz
    Test 11 - 8 tracks@48KHz
    Test 12 - 8 tracks@44KHz

    Phase 3 - An exact duplication of Phase 1, except that each time a "New Song" was created, the song was named.

    Test 13 - 24 tracks@48KHz
    Test 14 - 24 tracks@44KHz
    Test 15 - 16 tracks@48KHz
    Test 16 - 16 tracks@44KHz
    Test 17 - 8 tracks@48KHz
    Test 18 - 8 tracks@44KHz

    Phase 4 - An exact duplication of Phase 2, except that each time a "New Song" was created, the song was named.

    Test 19 - 24 tracks@48KHz
    Test 20 - 24 tracks@44KHz
    Test 21 - 16 tracks@48KHz
    Test 22 - 16 tracks@44KHz
    Test 23 - 8 tracks@48KHz
    Test 24 - 8 tracks@44KHz

    Phase 5 - This set of tests, while abbreviated, yielded the same net results as all the others, and had little time left to complete the permutations.

    This phase I believe more closely resembles real world scenereos where levels are checked for playback before an actual recording session.

    After creating a new song, 60 seconds of audio was captured. Afterwhich, the song was rolled back to "Locate 0". Then the test proceeded as previously outlined in Phases 1 through 4, with the exception that the second recording attempt, was made with a "second" existing set of 8 tracks. That way, differentation could be established as to what was actually captured.

    Test 25 - 8 Tracks@48KHz, Digital Input, No Name
    Test 26 - 8 Tracks@48KHz, Digital Input, Named
    Test 27 - 8 Tracks@48KHz, Analog Input, No Name
    Test 28 - 8 Tracks@48KHz, Analog Input, Named

    I should note, that each time the unit was powered back on, the "song" did have the correct corresponding amout of time initally allocated to the song. When played, the song was playable up to the initial 60 second timeframe, or shorter, when the power outage was performed.

    In each case, the audio captured on the initial timeframe was the audio which was played back, and NOT the second recording attempt. This was true before an after each attempt at rovery with the Onboard Disk Utility.

    This phase, while incompleted in term of running the permutations, does show promise that there may be a set of criteria that may yield recoverable audio tracks. But at this point, it is purely speculation, and down-right hopefullness on my part.

    If you are an Alesis HD24 owner, and have differing specifications of OS, or another HDD type/size, I would encourage you to continue this set of permutaions and post it to this thread.

    The continuation that I would encourage would include differing HDD's, 88 and 96KHz sample rates and external clock.

    Thanx for your attention through all the boring details,

    (DM Mobile Recording)
  20. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Guest

    It sounds to me that one of the factors involved here may be that of the disks already having been formatted or not formatted?

    I can only imagine that if one is recording on a hard disk drive that had been recorded on before, then it would have been formatted successfully. While recording data upon an already formatted drive and then having the power interrupted it may not necessarily delete or corrupt the disk format, creating recoverable data? But if you are recording on a virgin disk drive and are formatting while recording while power is interrupted, I can understand why tracks may not be recoverable on a disk that has not completed its format utility function.

    Nobody mentioned this so I thought I would just cause trouble again?
    Ms. Remy Ann David

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