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PC card for ADAT I/O & MIDI - separate or all in one

Discussion in 'Recording' started by thor, Jun 28, 2001.

  1. thor

    thor Active Member

    I have a PC based setup with an Event Gina (20 bit) that sounds great for what it is. Good outboard helps me get good results with it. I recently upgraded to a Yamaha AW4416 to get away from the PC, to be more mobile, and get a better mixer, among other things.

    So I find the editing sucks on the AW and I'll need to use the PC anyway. Gina doesn't support more than 2 channel digital I/O at a time (S/PDIF), which can be a pain when flying several tracks over at once. All editing will be done on the PC, all tracking on the AW. Perhaps in time I might want to use some tracks on the PC in sync with the AW (since it affords extra input channels at mixdown), and will need to sync the two (via MTC or wordclock I imagine).

    I have an ADAT card for the AW, and am thinking of getting one for the PC. At the same time, if I'm going to have to use the PC (at least in the studio), I figure I mught as well get everything connected and control my drum machine and synth via MIDI, and sync everything up via MTC/MMC.

    So, I've searched the net, rec.audio.pro (where else :), and pretty much found that the new Hammerfall DSP, while pricy, will do ADAT, a few analog tracks (nice for monitoring a two track mix being mastered on the PC - although I could still use my Gina for that) and has a MIDI channel or two.

    Before I go out and drop lot's of cash on this, is there a better/cleaner/more professional way to do this, in about the same or lower price range? I realize you get what you pay for, and have no problems with that. Should I be looking at a ADAT only card and a MIDI only card instead? My MIDI setup is small, and while I might pick up a sampler or effects box with MIDI control, I don't ever plan on having racks and racks of stuff to hook up via MIDI.

  2. Opus2000

    Opus2000 Well-Known Member

    Maybe the best thing to do is upgrade your Gina to the new Layla(24bit model) from Echo..it has 8 analog ins as well as an optical adat input..and midi..and spdif..and word clock. You can use all at the same time as well...or you could keep your Gina and use it conjunction with the new layla..that's the great thing about the echo products is that you can use multiple cards by them in one program.
    Or you could go for the RME stuff but that's all optical or analog...or you could go for Frontier Design stuff..The Dakota card is nice. As far as syncing goes with the AW just use MTC..it's easier..plus will need to have a digital clock of some nature..so thus setting the card you are sending the adat into to slave to SPDIF clock. That's my schtick and I'm schiticking to it!!!'
  3. thor

    thor Active Member

    Hi Opus,

    and thanks for the reply. I actually have thought about the Layla24, but I recall reading on r.a.p. (Arny Krueger maybe?) that the converters have some problems that the 20 bit series don't. I believe there was some distortion or something happening.

    Syncing the two would be nice.

    I think part of the problem is that I finally managed to kick my PC (happily) out of the studio, and it looks like it's on it's way back in (already!). I'm not really decided what I want to do with it. I've though about it a bit last night, and if I manage to build a _silent_ PC (should be able to), I could use it for:

    - MIDI sequencing, synth/drums/sampler in sync with audio tracks on the AW. Now I do each part "live" or simply synced to the AW alone.
    - Audio editing (flying tracks over from the AW). I guess CoolEdit will work here.
    - Mastering (copying the two track mix from the AW).
    - An extra recorder (bouncing tracks from the AW over to free up more AW tracks, then mixing everything together, all in sync).

    I don't think the analog I/O is that important, a stereo out is enough since I'm mixing digitally on the AW (or in the PC). I've got good converters (relatively) in the AW, plus the Gina, and don't need more inputs. Got some nice pre's and stuff so my front end is clean (CraneSong/Speck/RNC :)

    Layla24, eh? I'll go look again. Let me know if there's other stuff I should consider...!

  4. Opus2000

    Opus2000 Well-Known Member

    Take a look at the Wavecenter PCI from Frontierdesign.com...I think that's what you are looking for!!! If you need more MIDI inputs and outputs you can easily get a MOTU or MIDIman unit that has 4 or more MIDI ports on it. I think that should suit your needs pretty well my friend!!

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