what do I need?

Discussion in 'Mastering' started by Dave McNair, Aug 27, 2001.

  1. Dave McNair

    Dave McNair Active Member

    To all you mastering guys out there: I'm thinking about putting together a mastering setup. I know what I want in the way of analog gear, but what are my options other than Sonic, or Sadie, for a good sounding, resonably priced DAW? If I go for a system that doesn't run with it's own hardware, other than a bitchin' computer and some great coverters, what is the best sounding interface card? How do I lock the clocks in everything together? I want 24/96 capability. Please excuse my ignorance.
  2. atlasproaudio

    atlasproaudio Active Member

    Steinberg Nuendo with a UA Powered Plug in card are a good combo for most purposes. Of course you could spend a lot more on digital outboard eq, etc. YMMV
  3. Dave McNair

    Dave McNair Active Member

    Thanks, I've been hearing good things about Nuendo a lot lately.
  4. Jon Best

    Jon Best Active Member

    I'd say Wavelab 3.0, the RME card with all different digital flavors, the Waves Gold Bundle, and (depending on price range);

    A) Lucid AD, Mytek AD, or Crane Song HEDD

    B) Entech DA, Lucid DA, Mytek DA, or (included in the HEDD).

    And a pair of Dunlavys. Test a bunch of amps- they seem to like Haflers. Of course, other people use other gear and get good results.

    Most importantly, spend a couple grand on a good acoustician.
  5. Opus2000

    Opus2000 Well-Known Member

    I use Nuendo and Wavelab with Waves plugins and it rocks pretty hard.
  6. Dave McNair

    Dave McNair Active Member

    Who makes the RME card? Where can I get info? Also who makes Wavelabs? Thanks for the info guys, keep it comin.
  7. Rog

    Rog Member

    Steinberg make Wavelab. It's a very very good program. I also use Nuendo which is good for tracking and mixing but no use at all for mastering really - it's not designed for that job.

    SADiE has very good, very neutral sounding hardware and the interface is OK. However, it is very expensive for what it does, compared to other DAWs these days.

    RME make the hammerfall range of cards which are excellent. http://www.rme-audio.com (I think) their converters are also excellent for the money. Steinberg sell rebadged RME stuff for use with Nuendo. I'd get it from RME though - go where the support is strongest. Steinberg's tech support is somewhat lacking in certain areas.

    A Hammerfall comes with a word clock output but using the ADAT connection should take care of clocking issues. SADiE also has a WC out. Don't worry about clocks for now, worry about the quality of the available plugins (especially EQ as most EQ plugs are just awful in comarison to their analog counterparts) and worry about the quality of the converters.

    Hope this helps.
  8. Jon Best

    Jon Best Active Member

    All good information, except, IMO,

    Originally posted by Rog:

    A Hammerfall comes with a word clock output but using the ADAT connection should take care of clocking issues. .

    I have had some bad experiences relying on lightpipe transmitted clock information, and just assumed they were isolated until a number of people confirmed for me that the clock embedded in lightpipe is often garbage for some reason. Of course, most good A/D's have decent clocks in them anyway, and you can get most cards to slave to the AES or SPDIF input, which I believe is a cleaner way to transmit clock.
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