Software instruments or keyboard?

Discussion in 'Tracking / Mixing / Editing' started by wags, Oct 21, 2005.

  1. wags

    wags Guest

    I am putting together a home studio for myself and wondering what the pros and cons are of the two options. My concern is latency when I'm tracking. I am only looking for basicallytraditional type sounds(pianos,bass,percussion). The keyboard I have now has pretty weak piano samples(korg n264). If I go the software route, I will use it as a controller. So basically my question is can I use software instruments the same way I would use my keyboard??

    Thanks
    Mike

    My stuff:
    Pentium 4 3.2 ghz/1 gig ram
    Presonus Firebox
    M audio monitors
    Rode Nt1-a Condenser
    Beyerdynamic Dynamic mic
    Korg n264 workstation
    Cubase LE
     
  2. dabmeister music

    dabmeister music Active Member

    Well, somewhat. It depends on how the sample program itself is setup. Now of course you won't have identical parameters (in the program) as you have in your keyboard. But you can experiment & find what your limitations are. I use a variety of hardware synth modules as well as a sample package from IK multimedia. And would you like to know that I agree with you 100% on the latency issue too. It tends to spoil the mood. Which brings me to say "I do prefer hardsynth's over softsynths". Because they don't tax my DAW at all, and that leaves room for more AUDIO related processing. Since computing has come a long way, this should'nt really be a bother anymore. Especially if you have a couple of sample programs & libraries at your access and you have your DAW setup to handle such chores.
     
  3. wags

    wags Guest

    Thank you for the reply. That's a good point about the draw on CPU power, but It just seems redundant to purchase a keyboard workstation when my daw already has a sequencer built in. I am really just looking for the sounds.
     
  4. dabmeister music

    dabmeister music Active Member

    That's why they make modules. They're nothing more than the product minus the sequencing (in some cases) and the keyboard. For example, I use a Kurzweil K2500RS & Korg Triton Rack. Both do however have sequencers built in. But on the other hand, I'm still using a Roland JV1080 w/ expansion cards which does'nt rely on an internal sequencer. And to add to that, you won't have use for an additional sequencer anyway, if you're using a software based DAW like Cubase. Yes, it's all about the sounds.
     
  5. dabmeister music

    dabmeister music Active Member

    Also, if you plan on purchasing more keyboard related equipment or modules, do yourself a favor and invest in a small to medium midi hub/patchbay. The ports will show up in the host program you're using, therefore allowing you to rename these ports to the corresponding instrument. In Cubase, you can find that particular instrument and it will have the sound bank already setup for it. You'll never have to physically touch that module other than to power it off & on.
     
  6. wags

    wags Guest

    Thanks for the advice, I checked out some modules online like the Kurzweil ME1 halfrack and seemed like it had all the sounds I would need. I guess with modules I wouldn't run into the latency issues i would with software instruments. Plus there would be more cool gear in my studio :)

    Thanks
    Mike
     
  7. eoink

    eoink Active Member

    There is also the possibility of the MUSE receptor. I haven't seen it in action but apparently it's a rack unit that holds VST instruments.
    Here's a link:

    http://www.museresearch.com/
     
  8. wags

    wags Guest

    Looks like a great machine for what I'm looking for. I wonder what the quality is of the plugins it comes with. Little pricey though, have to put it in that "future upgrade" category
     

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