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World's first 24 track completely solid state hard disk

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by bhenderson, Sep 30, 2002.

  1. bhenderson

    bhenderson Guest

    Come to the iZ Technology booth # 1350 this weekend at the L.A. convention center to see the world's first 24 track completely solid state RADAR hard disk recorder.

    We'll be showing this and some other really cool accessories as well as the final 3.20 release.

    Studer and SSL will all be demonstrating RADAR integrated into their new Vista 7 and Avant consoles. They'll be showing RADAR jump through hoops under the full control of Soundmaster for post production applications.

    Sony will also be demoing RADAR in their booth with the DMXR100 and the new RADAR support for DMXR100 mix automation.

    This is going to be an exciting show....See you there!
  2. eclinton

    eclinton Guest

    Uh, didn't Mackie and Tascam introduce similar products over a year ago? What do you mean when you say 'completely solid state'? I'm confused again.

    peace, the dog
  3. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    Mar 28, 2001
    'Solid State' as opposed to 'Vapor Ware'? :p :w:
  4. bhenderson

    bhenderson Guest

    Solid state means no moving parts anywhere in the box! The hard disk is replaced with a totally electronic device which makes ZERO noise, will NEVER get bad clusters or have mechanical failure and runs at a very cool temperature which means the whole system experiences a lower temperature and becomes even more reliable. The electronic, flash memory-based recording media sits in a standard removable Kingston Carrier and is plug and play compatible with all RADAR products including RADAR I and RADAR II.

    I think the ideal application for this is live recording where you only get one take.
  5. audiokid

    audiokid Chris Staff Resource Member

    Mar 20, 2000
    Prince George, BC
    Home Page:
    Sounds like this is the future to me. Nothing worse than hard drive noise bleeding through the room. Nice work on this move Barry, and if it's any help, feel free to talk more about your system.

  6. 20db.com

    20db.com Guest

    Hard drives have always been the slowest and most vunerable parts of a recorder. Sure would be nice to think some day we can get away from the last remaining mechnical component.

    Its my understanding that this solid state device plugs right into the drive bay of the Radar which would be very cool.

    I am pretty sure this capability is fairly expensive but as we all know that is just a matter of time. Its nice to see a company pushing the envelope in this area and actually demonstrating product. Not just making a press release. :)

  7. eclinton

    eclinton Guest

    Solid state drives (RAMDisks) have been around for probably 20 years or so. Even PC DOS would let you partition some of your RAM as a virtual drive. Flash drive is slow and stable, generally, and DRAM drive is blisteringly fast but more volatile. Both are about 500 times more expensive than conventional hard drives, which are down to around $1 per Gig, with new higher density tech on the horizon.

    If you want, you can drop a solid state drive into your DAW today, if you're willing to pay the price. It's a cool idea, but not a new idea.

    I always thought the cooling fan was more offensive than the drive, noise-wise, and I notice the RADAR unit does seem to have a mechanical fan (moving part) right inside the box.

    Has anyone measured the actual noise level produced by fans and drives? I wonder if there are more cost effective ways to reduce the system noise.

    Am I right in assuming that one could use a conventional drive in the RADAR machine if you had to? I wouldn't give it a second glance if it uses a proprietary drive interface. If it is a standard interface, what's stopping one from plugging the RADAR drive into the TASCAM or the Mackie? (I don't know what interface they use)

    Kudos for trying, but the SS drive angle sounds like marketing hype to me, and hardly reason enough on it's own to recommend the RADAR thingie over the competition. I'd be more interested in the features of the user interface, how to download to a DAW, etc.

    peace, the dog
  8. 20db.com

    20db.com Guest

    Dog, I think you might be missing the point and maybe a bit cynical. There are many technologies that have been on the drawing boards for years but this is not the same thing as actually demonstrating and releasing a usable product that actually works.

    Operating systems had been around for years when Microsoft combined dos and pc hardware. But this doesn't discount that fact that their efforts created an entire industry and made them billions. Digi comes out with a 192k which Radar had for years and yet everyone jumps up and down. So just because some thing has been around for years doesn't make it any less important. Its the application and implement ion that makes a product useful. Otherwise its just a lab experiment.

    Todays technology goes well beyond the old days of Flash drives and RAMdisk which is why this type of product can be exciting for certain applications.

    The specs:
    1) MTBF(Mean Time Before Failure): 1.9 million hours = 216 years (disk drive: 1 million hours)
    2) Operating Shock = 1,500 Gs(disk drive: 15 Gs)
    3) Operating Temperature = -40 to +85 deg C
    4) Operating Vibration = 16 Gs (disk drive: 0.5 Gs)
    5) Access time = 48 microseconds (disk drives: 8,000 microseconds)
    6) Airflow required = None (disk drive: strong airflow or will overheat)

    This is obviously NOT a volatile memory technology or iZ wouldn't be discussing it as storage. And this is not about noise its about reliability and performance. Yes lower noise is a by-product of solid state but the Radar is already quieter than my stupid PC so I doubt this is their motivation for this product.

    The US Government uses RADARs to record 24 tracks of Sonar data. Many of these installations could be in extremely harsh environments and a solid-state recorder would be extremely valuable.

    In a live recording environment reliability is Number 1. There is no such thing as "Take 2" and here time IS money. Its wonderful that you can buy a drive at $1 a Gig but if you are getting paid to record a live performance what difference does it make. The piece of mind in having a reliable solid-state storage device with error correction is worth its weigh in gold. If if the drive is $5000 so what. At the end of the gig you dump to a SCSI drive and reuse the solid-state drive. Now of course if a guy is doing demo bands in their basement then I could see how they might miss this point. But that is not who this product is built for to begin with.

    Yes this is 5 gigs of solid state memory that plugs right into the drive carrier so I don't see any reason why it wouldn't work with any system. They recently released an 80gig iSCSI drive for the RADAR that plugs into and Tascam. I have never seem them release any drive products that they would not sell to anyone.

    At first is sounds like you would chastise them for making a proprietary interface but in the same breath make it sound like its of no value because any one can pull this into any system. So I think I missed your point on this comment.

    Dog, not sure what your problem with the RADAR is but a rock solid 24 track recorder is hardly hype. I haven't seen anyone say a solid state drive is the only reason to buy a RADAR. Its a well established fact that the RADAR converters blow away any converter costing 5 times that of the RADAR. It is also the most reliable box in the market especially comparied to a Taiwanese PC running Windoze and a couple dozen poorly written $50plug-ins

    My intention is not put down your daw decision because there is certainly a place for this technology. But a comment like "...more interested in the features of the user interface, how to download to a DAW", indicates a PC centric view of the world. Most of us many different tools and while you probably never heard or used a RADAR before, you should consider widening your perspective a bit.

    The demonstration of this product will not rock the audio industry but regardless of who was releasing this technology it is definitely a step in the right direction. Hard drives are still the oldest and most vulnerable piece of technology we depend on today. I for one would love to see hard drives relegated to the role of back up devices and not my primary recording media.

    Nice to see a company like iZ focusing on reliablity and not on useless bells and whistles that create "Bloatware". The software industry is driven purely by upgrades and adding more and more features. I already have moreplug-ins more tracks and more editing capability that I could possibly use. What I want is a product that works 100% of the time, is not outdated when version 3.1285834348549.95 comes out next week and records the best possible sound quality.

    But I guess I am probably totally out of sync from the rest of the world. :D

  9. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    Mar 28, 2001
    hmmm...that is interesting. Suffice to say That I'll be dropping by monday at AES to take a look. I'm designing another room that's going up soon, and two radars (along with a pair of sony DMX-R100's and an PT HD rig) are on the proposal...sounds like it'll be even cooler.....
  10. eclinton

    eclinton Guest

    Lee, no hostility intended. I'm not challenging your manhood, or the quality of the product for that matter. The infommercial (sp?) style of the original post and the insinuation that Radar is the first company with solid-state storage left me with a very negative first impression. I respect your opinion of the machine much more so than that of a salesman. I have no interest in getting into an argument over this.

    As a gesture of my goodwill, let me know when you're ready to upgrade those $50 plugins. I can help you out with some recommendations.

    peace, (sincerely) the dog
  11. 20db.com

    20db.com Guest

    :) :) :) LOL

    Sorry didn't mean to be so defensive. I guess I tend to look at the big picture and from the 10,000 foot view I saw this as cool step forward.

    Dog, you know as well as I do that in our industry time literally is money. The loss of a hard drive could ruin an entire project and maybe your reputation. Of course we all do several backups don't we. :) But that is not always enough.

    So I guess my reaction or maybe over-reaction was due to the fact that what I saw was iZ working to save my bacon. :D

    Thanks for your offer on theplug-ins

  12. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Jul 2, 2002
    77 Sunset Lane.
    I would like to take advantage of this opportunity to say something to a manufacturer about the state of retail audio business. IMO, improvements in hard drives, bit and sample rates become moot in a few years or even months. What I would like to see is a stabilization of all these factors so when a schmuck like me plunks down his hard earned money it won't turn into a sacrifice to the freeway gods over night. All the hyperbole about "this sounds better" , "this is a longer term storage answer" or "this will make that turd you just put in the punch bowl shine and smell like an ice cube" has worn on me. I long for the day when you could buy a used, well made, good sounding machine that wasn't obsolete. Oh wait, it's still here, it's called analog! But analog can't compete with all the cut and paste, auto tuning, time stretching, "Just do it once and I'll copy it down", talent creating features of the DAW and it is impossible to convince todays client that this new box isn't the best thing to come along since the tube rectifier. I believe solid state storage technology is the wave of the future. Les Paul stated many years ago (to paraphrase) "There has got to be a better way to record other than dragging oxide over heads." I just wish that $20,000 stack of ADATS over there was still worth as much as my old trusty MCI JH 24. Until some long term value is built in, I am going to buy the cheapest stuff I can find that does the job. It doesn't need to be of any real quality, I don't need to worry that it will last, I know it won't, so why bother......Fats
  13. sign

    sign Guest

    Amen, Fats! :tu:
  14. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Jul 2, 2002
    77 Sunset Lane.
    I did mean to mention that it's REALLY GREAT that your new memory technoligy is legacy compatible. I hearteley applaude this approach and is truely what is needed in the industry (IMHO). Kudos to you for that....Fats :c:
  15. 20db.com

    20db.com Guest

    Fats, I think you bring up a great point and I wish more people would take your attitude. I often argue that this software centric view of the world is extremely dangerous and it concerns me that more studios are running head first into a single box solution. I constantly see the monitor staring zombies selling their consoles and outboard gear in lieu of moreplug-insand a control surface.

    The software industry is driven by the exact opposite of motivations that you described. The life span of software is measured in months and in order to be successful these companies require you to upgrade on a regular basis. As you pointed out they continue to develop more and more useless features that create a level of "Bloatware" that would even make Microsoft proud.

    Fats, I see a resurgence in a small group of musicians and engineers who hold the same interest as yourself and are actually go back to analog or at least a more balanced analog/digital system view of the world.

    Back to Radar.
    In my opinion one of the things that make Radar unique is very point you raised about your 2". First of all it is THE most reliable digital system I have ever used. These guys are almost obsessed with this issue and as an example have just announced a 3 drive bay system and they are working on the ability to record to two drives at the same time.

    Your point about products retaining value is well taken and again one of the things that Radar offers is the ability to upgrade even their older Radar systems. So for example you could take a Radar and return it to iZ and get back the latest version of the Radar 24. I have not seen any other company offer this kind of policy and this is the closest approach to your 2" example. There are plenty of Radar I and Radar II's that are still making records in Nashville.

    Fats, good discussion and glad to see some one else who is not hypnotized by continuous monitor radiation. :D


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