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The Impending Death of TDM

Discussion in 'Recording' started by hueseph, Mar 28, 2011.

  1. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    A lot of discussion over ProTools going Native and even HD Native. Is there something in the works? Obviously. How close is it? Well it exists already.

    My question? Why the baby steps? This is old news over at the DUC but I thought, I'd bring it on over for discussion if anyone is interested.

     
  2. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    I know this is a bit of a napalm drop... but pro audio is a tiny market in comparison to pro/broadcast video.

    Pro/broadcast video is what drives our industry in the digital age.

    It takes 7-12 years for broadcasters to get a decent enough ROI on their gear, to afford to replace it. They just heavily invested in the digital market in the US, 3 years ago to handle the transition to digital over the air.

    So, it's going to be another couple of years to get them to dump the millions of dollars of gear in which they "just" invested. And don't forget, when a broadcaster invests in gear, the stuff has to work 24/7/365... It takes a lot of investment in time on the manufacturers part to come up with a product that will meet those demands.

    While the other world markets will likely adopt sooner, I just don't see the US market all that eager to make the transition very soon...
     
  3. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    It's hard to consumerize an industry. It's a lot harder for a working studio to fall into an upgrade trap like the home users do. I'm not really sure what they are grasping for. It seems as though Avid have lost touch with the fact that High End Users invest only when it is absolutely necessary. Somehow in the past two years they have had more "upgrades" than the previous ten. It doesn't make any sense.

    They should concentrate on making one significant upgrade and (I hate to say it but...) ditch the legacy. Keep up the support but stop making the old hardware and pitch it to break even. You know that a working studio won't want old technology because they realize that in order to stay in the game they will need an investment that is going to be sustainable for years to come. Of all people, they should realize that there is no room for incremental upgrades in pro audio. Above all, they should realize that there aren't three or four classes of consumers. There are two. Those who can afford high end and those who can't. Why try and sell product to a market that doesn't exist?

    What the market needs is good quality prosumer gear and even better quality boutique gear. Stop with the pussy-footin'.(a term which refers to the soft paws of a cat when trying to avoid being detected. This is not intended as a sekshually derogatory term).:rolleyes:
     
  4. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    I'm kinda' with ya', here... but the reality of the small scale of the audio market vs the broadcast market is what I am finding the great equalizer.

    Sure, broadcasters want to save money, but not at the expense of stability and reliability. If they continuously have broadcast issues, they can (in the US, at least) loose their license... and thus, all their income... and THAT is serious money. Advertising revenue of one typical mid-market television station is about the size of entire retail chains in prosumer audio.

    As far as legacy, unfortunately, it will be a huge market segment for several more years. The amount of legacy broadcast gear that is still in scheduled service boggles the mind. When some of this gear costs half a million dollars, and you have 6 or 8 of these in a broadcast facility, and they aren't scheduled for replacement for another 3-5 years (or more)... it's going to be just about impossible to just make the break and dump all backwards compatibility. There's just plain too much money involved. Especially when there is no clear cut industry mandated standards, except on the actual broadcast content, or the transmission envelope itself. Everything in between is still pretty much an open standard.

    So, the manufacturers are consumerizing the segments they can, (and reaping some extra profits) by doing the incremental obsolescence thing to supplement their R&D for the high end markets... by taking the technology advancements that the broadcasters aren't willing to buy yet, and guinea piggin' the poor sods in the "pro audio" industry.

    I'm not belittling anyone, but IMVHO, if you're getting into recording as anything other than a part-time hobby - where you're spending expendable cash, you're setting yourself up for getting screwed on anything you buy, except mic's and pre's.

    No matter what other gear you buy, it will not retain any of it's value to make it anything other than a disposable item for a landfill... which I personally find rather disgusting... considering all the concern for the environment and what all we're tossing into our water tables. (but that's another discussion for another time.)

    Granted, the advent of the home recordist market is a wonderful advancement, in that many musicians are now able to create music w/o the expense of going to a high-end studio, but the double edge of that blade is that the low end, and even mid-level gear is worthless as soon as it comes out of the boxes it came in. Heck, even much of the high-end gear looses as much as 50% of it's value when it comes out of the boxes.

    The manufacturers don't care about music. They are only looking to satisfy the stockholders with dividends. What better way to churn profits, than to build a disposable (consumer mindset) product that gets obsolete in less than a year.
     
  5. gdoubleyou

    gdoubleyou Well-Known Member

    Closer inspection will show that only the PTHD audio interface is connected, not the DSP.

    I have the Thunderbolt connection on my new quad core Macbook Pro. Currently only external hard drives are available for it.
     
  6. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    Exactly. Which kind of leads you to believe that the interface either dsp built in or that the interface leaves dsp out all together. An HD interface without PCIe.
     
  7. kcfroines

    kcfroines Active Member


    Am I missing something? It doesn't look like the HDi/o is on at all...
     
  8. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    Look closer. There's something going on 'cause the LEDs are blinking.
     
  9. gdoubleyou

    gdoubleyou Well-Known Member

    I've seen some stills from the demo, most of the gear seems to be modified to accept TB, not production ready units.

    I'm actually using TB, doh! The Dvi adapter actually plugs into TB I have my LG 22 inch monitor connected.
     
  10. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    The A1-A2 D/A's are only pushing 2-bus... likely it's the output from the PT (A1-A2) Mix bus... so everything in the "session" was already on the drive, and in the session.

    Also of note, there are two Thunderbolt connections in the laptop... one for the HD unit, and one for the drive. (So much for single cable connectivity.)
     
  11. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    True but, the fact that the interface is functioning at all is interesting. I suppose they could have just as easily rigged mbox guts to run inside it but they are certainly implying something.
     
  12. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    Again, I sincerely think that they're trying to get the R&D completed for the "next generation" of in-studio and location broadcast gear.

    What the "host" implied was that the AVID interface will handle both audio and video... then they just show a newly labeled 192HD?? My guess is that homey just read the script they showed him... and really doesn't know squat.

    I just spent 3 weeks wiring a brand new seriously high-end multimedia facility. It had been in the works for probably 3 years before the building was built, and all the gear brought in and wired. I can guarantee you that this facility won't be changing out this installation for at least 5-7 years... BUT... This place is using some of the latest and greatest in broadcast technology... and nothing is really all that cutting edge.

    When you're spending millions of dollars on these facilities, you can't afford cutting edge technology. That edge is just too bloody and costly. You would buy the best that was available, and the most reliable, to get the best return on your investment.

    Things like Thunderbolt and SSD's aren't proven technology yet, for those industries that cannot afford failure. In another 5 years, they may be proven enough... but in the meantime... the manufacturers are using "prosumers" as the test market for things that may or may not survive long enough to make it to the real pro market.
     
  13. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    Max I appreciate your input. It's nice to hear the perspective of someone on the "inside". I sincerely hope they don't do away with DSP. I think that would be a big mistake. Computers are getting more powerful yes but, programs are getting equally more hungry. Just running Windows 7 is a resource hog. As much as I like to bash Avid for their business model, I don't want to see "boutique" interfaces go away.
     
  14. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    I wouldn't say I'm on the inside... more like someone who got to see the open door....

    TDM, while an "old" protocol, does work extremely well... it's just not new.

    There's always a manufacturer of some kind of something that does the job better than anyone else, at some point. When other businesses find those resources, they have longevity. Look at conveyor systems used everywhere from General Mills to General Motors.

    Very simplified, it's old technology, but damn if the stuff don't work for a LOOOOONG time without much more than some minor maintenance and a fixed part, every now and then. So, the conveyor manufacturers have to create systems that are either going to constantly need to be replaced, or they have to build in flexibility to be updated as the purchaser needs/demands changes. But essentially, conveyor systems are still based on old technology that just plain works, and no real improvement is at all necessary. (read between the lines how you wish.)
     

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