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Roland VS 1880 - transferring individual tracks onto other machine to be mixed and mastered m

Hi, i`ve done some recording on the 1880 and plan to do more . I`m not very techy and it took a long time to learn how to use this machine - I still have a lot to learn - but i`m happy to just be able to put tracks down and mix o.k. creating a decent soundscape . However, once played back on c.d. it sounds o.k. - but I`m missing a bit of spark or punch that a pro engineer i`m sure could remedy on a superior machine - i would ideally like to have a pro to spice it up for me . Does this sound doable ? I have around 10 tracks per song on mostly acoustic instruments - fiddle, accordion, percussion, etc. What price range could i expect to pay for such services . All thoughts and advice would be greatly appreciated - Thanks.

Comments

Kurt Foster Mon, 09/09/2019 - 08:34
what you are asking for is possible but mileage may vary. a lot depends on how well you have recorded the tracks in the first place. initial capture is the most critical part of recording and while tracks may be "sweetened" at mix or in post production there is no substitute for a well recorded performance. good luck with your project.

Tony Carpenter Mon, 09/09/2019 - 09:26
To add to what Kurt said. I personally did a lot of recording on a VS1880. I sadly made the mistake of printing (recording) the built in effects at the time on all tracks. I’ve been able to extract the tracks on an older windows laptop from CDs. This involves software and produces individual tracks of left and right in wave format if stereo. That along with number of track/virtual track also from memory.

I do not have the 1880, which is why I did what I’ve done. Since you do have it. I would involve it with audio outputs to a DAW computer instead.

Jonathan Larkin Mon, 09/09/2019 - 10:07
Thanks - i`m not very advanced tech wise - i wouldn`t know the 1st thing about doing any kind of transfer - i pretty much just want to focus on my compositions and leave the tech stuff to some one else - It took a lot of time and frustration to figure out how to lay down tracks on the 1880 . i just know they can sound better and i`m willing to pay . I`m an old guy and pretty busy . I like laying down tracks in my little studio when ever i get the chance as opposed to going to a far away studio on a schedule - that`s huge for me . I bought the 1880 about 20 years ago and bought 2 more a few years ago so i would have some back up . I `m not adverse to learning how to use more modern technology - it`s just that i don`t want to spend a lot of time doing so - in my situation it may be more cost effective hiring some one to finishing the tech side of my recordings . I am happy with the initial recording capabilities of the Roland just not the mix capabilities.

Jonathan Larkin Mon, 09/09/2019 - 10:44
Jonathan Larkin, post: 462117, member: 51686 wrote: Thanks - i`m not very advanced tech wise - i wouldn`t know the 1st thing about doing any kind of transfer - i pretty much just want to focus on my compositions and leave the tech stuff to some one else - It took a lot of time and frustration to figure out how to lay down tracks on the 1880 . i just know they can sound better and i`m willing to pay . I`m an old guy and pretty busy . I like laying down tracks in my little studio when ever i get the chance as opposed to going to a far away studio on a schedule - that`s huge for me . I bought the 1880 about 20 years ago and bought 2 more a few years ago so i would have some back up . I `m not adverse to learning how to use more modern technology - it`s just that i don`t want to spend a lot of time doing so - in my situation it may be more cost effective hiring some one to finishing the tech side of my recordings . I am happy with the initial recording capabilities of the Roland just not the mix capabilities.

Kurt Foster Mon, 09/09/2019 - 12:30
i took a look at the owners manual and what a nightmare that thing is to operate. my hat is off to you Johnathan for being able to wade through it all and actually record with it. it's a much different world now. the new Tascam 24 is so simple to record with. just put in an SD card, arm the tracks and hit record. when you finish take the SD card and load it into a computer to mix or just mix it to a stereo file on the Model 24

Jonathan Larkin Mon, 09/09/2019 - 13:18
Kurt Foster, post: 462120, member: 7836 wrote: i took a look at the owners manual and what a nightmare that thing is to operate. my hat is off to you Johnathan for being able to wade through it all and actually record with it. it's a much different world now. the new Tascam 24 is so simple to record with. just put in an SD card, arm the tracks and hit record. when you finish take the SD card and load it into a computer to mix or just mix it to a stereo file on the Model 24
sounds like that may be a great option - i`ll have to look into the tascam - Thanks !

Jonathan Larkin Mon, 09/09/2019 - 14:21
Kurt Foster, post: 462120, member: 7836 wrote: i took a look at the owners manual and what a nightmare that thing is to operate. my hat is off to you Johnathan for being able to wade through it all and actually record with it. it's a much different world now. the new Tascam 24 is so simple to record with. just put in an SD card, arm the tracks and hit record. when you finish take the SD card and load it into a computer to mix or just mix it to a stereo file on the Model 24
well , i guess my next question would be is the recording quality of Tascam 24 is good as the Roland vs.1800 ?

Jonathan Larkin Mon, 09/09/2019 - 15:07
Jonathan Larkin, post: 462126, member: 51686 wrote:
Kurt Foster, post: 462120, member: 7836 wrote: i took a look at the owners manual and what a nightmare that thing is to operate. my hat is off to you Johnathan for being able to wade through it all and actually record with it. it's a much different world now. the new Tascam 24 is so simple to record with. just put in an SD card, arm the tracks and hit record. when you finish take the SD card and load it into a computer to mix or just mix it to a stereo file on the Model 24
Regarding the Tascam 24 -How much memory can i store or how many 5 minute individual quality tracks can i lay down before needing to move it to make room for the next song ? Thanks .

kmetal Mon, 09/09/2019 - 17:44
They make 120gb SD cards now, which would handle several albums worth of multitracked audio.

To touch on a couple other things in the thread. In the U.S. you can expect to pay 25-100$ per hour for mixing, possibly more if you went with an A-list commercial music mixer.

I like all in one units, and got good mileage from my tascam portastudio. However mixing is not generally their strong suit. This is where a DAW like reaper, or garage band, ect ect, offers tons of capability and flexibility. The learning curve is moderate, but there is a ton of information and tutorials on youtube. Something not available when i started.

I would send your music to a professional or two or three, and see if you like it. They can also give you input on your recordings and help improve them at the source.

At that point i would decide if you want to get into mixing my own stuff or if the arrangement with the pro suits you better. If you decide to go diy, a decent entry level interface, speakers and acoustic treatment, will cost 600-1k USD. A good way to learn fast is to attend a mix session with a pro and watch what he does, and ask some questions.

Jonathan Larkin Mon, 09/09/2019 - 21:56
kmetal, post: 462131, member: 37533 wrote: They make 120gb SD cards now, which would handle several albums worth of multitracked audio.

To touch on a couple other things in the thread. In the U.S. you can expect to pay 25-100$ per hour for mixing, possibly more if you went with an A-list commercial music mixer.

I like all in one units, and got good mileage from my tascam portastudio. However mixing is not generally their strong suit. This is where a DAW like reaper, or garage band, ect ect, offers tons of capability and flexibility. The learning curve is moderate, but there is a ton of information and tutorials on youtube. Something not available when i started.

I would send your music to a professional or two or three, and see if you like it. They can also give you input on your recordings and help improve them at the source.

At that point i would decide if you want to get into mixing my own stuff or if the arrangement with the pro suits you better. If you decide to go diy, a decent entry level interface, speakers and acoustic treatment, will cost 600-1k USD. A good way to learn fast is to attend a mix session with a pro and watch what he does, and ask some questions.
Thanks - great response - It`s almost mandatory that i would have the mixing / editing capabilities on the tascam the same as my v.s. 1880 . I need to be able to rough mix it as well as move or cut as well as loop musical phrases before getting ready to send song out to a final mix somewhere or on something else. Don`t know if the tascam can do that . From what i have read there seems to be quite a number of people that have not been that happy with the tascam 24 when it comes to home recording - mainly about the lack of instructions . It seems it`s meant more to be about recording live bands - nice mixer that can record if needed. I think i`m better off trying to find an engineer that can transfer my tracks to a more modern machine - transferring the individual tracks seems doable . Finding someone who would be willing do it might be a little challenging - i don`t know . I will have to ask local studios . hopefully they won`t be too busy . I feel it might be akin to asking a plumber to find hardware and faucets to fit a 100 year old sink. I think i could afford in the upper range of the mixing service you mentioned . . I can do a rough mix with 7 or 8 tracks on my v.s.1880 in less than an hour . So I`m supposing it would take an engineer 2-3 hours to make a more finished song - but what do i know ? . Anyway , thanks again for the info.

Kurt Foster Tue, 09/10/2019 - 08:39
Jonathan Larkin, post: 462125, member: 51686 wrote: well , i guess my next question would be is the recording quality of Tascam 24 is good as the Roland vs.1800 ?

probably better! i'm sure the Tascam would have better converters, mic pres and eq's.

Jonathan Larkin, post: 462132, member: 51686 wrote: I need to be able to rough mix it as well as move or cut as well as loop musical phrases before getting ready to send song out to a final mix somewhere or on something else. Don`t know if the tascam can do that .

you can mix on the 24 but there's no editing facilities. i have become a proponent of these stand alone gizmos. first off, they are very cost effective. they work well enough and sound good enough to be a viable solution imo and being limited to 24/ 48 (which these days is the only reason to record in a DAW) isn't an issue for me. very few people can even hear the differences between 48 and 96. 48 is plenty good enough for production in a stand alone recorder where the mix's are being done on the recorder.

seriously the Roland is a bit long in the tooth and at some point you are likely to need to move on. devices like these aren't intended to last forever and are impossible to service in many cases. your current difficulty in moving your files in and out are just the tip of the iceberg imo. as much as i hate to say this, if you really need to cut and paste, loop and move stuff around, perhaps it's time to take the leap into a computer based DAW .... if just for editing. a combination of almost any laptop, a simple to use free program like Audacity for editing (which is what Audacity is supposed to be used for) and the Tascam or other stand alone recorder like a Zoom should do. their operation is simple compared to what you have to go through with the Roland.

Jonathan Larkin, post: 462132, member: 51686 wrote: From what i have read there seems to be quite a number of people that have not been that happy with the tascam 24 when it comes to home recording - mainly about the lack of instructions . It seems it`s meant more to be about recording live bands - nice mixer that can record if needed

that's fair to say. it is not an editor. but it is an interface. it's intended use is a mixer and stand alone recorder or as a 24 channel interface into a DAW. it is not a workstation. actually that's what i like about it most. but it is super simple to move your files to a DAW . for what you want to do you can simply pull out the SD card and hand it to the person you want to mix your project. no weird file formats. no ZIP DISKS, no CDRs. no hard drives to fail. solid state memory. no moving parts, simple to duplicate for back ups. you can also move files to a computer via USB as you record or after. hook up the USB connection to your computer and the SD card shows up as a drive on your screen. super easy.

as far as the lack of instructions, there's not really that much to it. again, that's what i like about it!

Jonathan Larkin Tue, 09/10/2019 - 14:08
Kurt Foster, post: 462133, member: 7836 wrote: probably better! i'm sure the Tascam would have better converters, mic pres and eq's.



you can mix on the 24 but there's no editing facilities. i have become a proponent of these stand alone gizmos. first off, they are very cost effective. they work well enough and sound good enough to be a viable solution imo and being limited to 24/ 48 (which these days is the only reason to record in a DAW) isn't an issue for me. very few people can even hear the differences between 48 and 96. 48 is plenty good enough for production in a stand alone recorder where the mix's are being done on the recorder.

seriously the Roland is a bit long in the tooth and at some point you are likely to need to move on. devices like these aren't intended to last forever and are impossible to service in many cases. your current difficulty in moving your files in and out are just the tip of the iceberg imo. as much as i hate to say this, if you really need to cut and paste, loop and move stuff around, perhaps it's time to take the leap into a computer based DAW .... if just for editing. a combination of almost any laptop, a simple to use free program like Audacity for editing (which is what Audacity is supposed to be used for) and the Tascam or other stand alone recorder like a Zoom should do. their operation is simple compared to what you have to go through with the Roland.



that's fair to say. it is not an editor. but it is an interface. it's intended use is a mixer and stand alone recorder or as a 24 channel interface into a DAW. it is not a workstation. actually that's what i like about it most. but it is super simple to move your files to a DAW . for what you want to do you can simply pull out the SD card and hand it to the person you want to mix your project. no weird file formats. no ZIP DISKS, no CDRs. no hard drives to fail. solid state memory. no moving parts, simple to duplicate for back ups. you can also move files to a computer via USB as you record or after. hook up the USB connection to your computer and the SD card shows up as a drive on your screen. super easy.

as far as the lack of instructions, there's not really that much to it. again, that's what i like about it!
Thanks for taking the time about all of this. The thing is i`m probably the most untech person you will ever meet. It took me a long time to figure out the roland- - but now that I had gotten t it figured out i can fly around those editing functions fairly quickly so that`s no problem for me - However , that tascam sounds pretty tempting - i would definitely use it to record my band live as i have tried to do before with the roland [ that was an adventure trying to record individual tracks on that - there was some success , but very clumsy for sure ] I think the fact that that tracks would be more accessible to an engineer may be the selling point for me. My guess is the Tascam is superior in recording quality - i used to own a teac - 3440 [ i think ] 1/2 inch reel to reel 4 track - I believe Teac was affiliated somehow with tascam. Anyway , I know they are good quality and have been around awhile. You may have changed my mind - Thanks

Jonathan Larkin Wed, 09/11/2019 - 20:27
Jonathan Larkin, post: 462134, member: 51686 wrote: Thanks for taking the time about all of this. The thing is i`m probably the most untech person you will ever meet. It took me a long time to figure out the roland- - but now that I had gotten t it figured out i can fly around those editing functions fairly quickly so that`s no problem for me - However , that tascam sounds pretty tempting - i would definitely use it to record my band live as i have tried to do before with the roland [ that was an adventure trying to record individual tracks on that - there was some success , but very clumsy for sure ] I think the fact that that tracks would be more accessible to an engineer may be the selling point for me. My guess is the Tascam is superior in recording quality - i used to own a teac - 3440 [ i think ] 1/2 inch reel to reel 4 track - I believe Teac was affiliated somehow with tascam. Anyway , I know they are good quality and have been around awhile. You may have changed my mind - Thanks
Hello again - just wondering - how do you get on with such a small screen ? - I think it may be too tiny for me to know what i`m doing - I know you can transfer all the info to a computer and have it all on a large screen - but it sounds like you can`t do any actual recording while using a computer. I think I would find myself constantly going back and forth between the 2 . But maybe that is easy to do. Not sure. Many thanks for any additional advice.

Tony Carpenter Wed, 09/11/2019 - 23:13
Hi Jonathan Larkin

One of the overarching reasons I personally gave up on my VS1880 was to get the bigger screen. I eventually got a nice controller too and now I get the feeling of the Vs with none of the restrictions. I’m not sure if you realise but a lot of us are getting on in years that do recording and have adapted to DAW based computers. The level of difficulty is actually lower than the VS in things like garage band on a Mac or some others on PC. You would be surprised how that would change your recording world.

Tony

pcrecord Thu, 09/12/2019 - 04:48
Jonathan Larkin, post: 462136, member: 51686 wrote: Hello again - just wondering - how do you get on with such a small screen ? - I think it may be too tiny for me to know what i`m doing - I know you can transfer all the info to a computer and have it all on a large screen - but it sounds like you can`t do any actual recording while using a computer. I think I would find myself constantly going back and forth between the 2 . But maybe that is easy to do. Not sure. Many thanks for any additional advice.
Hey Jonathan,
I was on the impression you would only transfer your old recordings and wanted to mix them in the computer.
If recording new songs is the target, I'd get the manual on my night table and go through it. with these units you need to dive in or you don't.
As for the small screen, I don't know ; magnifiying glass ??

The alternative is to transfer everything to a computer and retire or sell the 1880.
Then buy a nice audio interface and record new stuff directly to the computer. Audient, RME or the low budget FOcusrite and presonus...

Kurt Foster Thu, 09/12/2019 - 07:33
Jonathan Larkin, post: 462136, member: 51686 wrote: Hello again - just wondering - how do you get on with such a small screen ? - I think it may be too tiny for me to know what i`m doing - I know you can transfer all the info to a computer and have it all on a large screen - but it sounds like you can`t do any actual recording while using a computer. I think I would find myself constantly going back and forth between the 2 . But maybe that is easy to do. Not sure. Many thanks for any additional advice.

i assume you are asking about the Tascam. the 24 can be used with a computer as an interface or it can be used in stand alone mode. but you can't do both at the same time. for instance, you can record to the SD card in stand alone mode and then transfer the files to a computer for editing. you then have the option of continuing in the computer while you use the Tascam as an interface. or you can take the files in the computer and transfer them back into the 24 and mix it from there.

Soundcraft makes the MTK series mixers that interface directly into a computer, however you don't get the stand alone recording capabilities of the Tascam.

Jonathan Larkin Thu, 09/12/2019 - 10:04
pcrecord, post: 462139, member: 46460 wrote: Hey Jonathan,
I was on the impression you would only transfer your old recordings and wanted to mix them in the computer.
If recording new songs is the target, I'd get the manual on my night table and go through it. with these units you need to dive in or you don't.
As for the small screen, I don't know ; magnifiying glass ??

The alternative is to transfer everything to a computer and retire or sell the 1880.
Then buy a nice audio interface and record new stuff directly to the computer. Audient, RME or the low budget FOcusrite and presonus...
Hi , thanks for reply - everything i want to do will be new recordings - and i have around 3 grand to spend on equipment and i would plan on spending some time with very necessary help from utube vidoes , other knowledgeable folks in my area - either for hire or out of the goodness of their hearts . so , again i`m a solo musician who plays multiple acoustic instruments - i only use 1 track / channel for recording at a time - i usually end up with about 10 tracks at a time - i then of course mix them down and clumsily master them down on to a c.d. In recording i 1st lay down a click track [ built in metronome ] sync my kick drum to it and use that as the beat reference to all future tracks - i use punch ins quite a bit as well as moving measures of music around and looping. that`s the extent of edit functions i need As far as effects go - i would only use them in mix down and that would be just reverb and equalization but i might try other things . If the mix doesn`t sound right then i would find an engineer - i would probably use an engineer anyway for mastering. I`m also planning on buying a computer - lap top would be ideal - as far as selling the 1880 - i have 3 of them in good working condition - but i don`t think i could get much beyond 500 bucks for all of them combined . But anyway , i would be very interested in knowing from you or any one else what you would buy if you were in my shoes . My ultimate goal is to make a somewhat pro recorded , sellable , album for a local and niche audience .

Jonathan Larkin Thu, 09/12/2019 - 10:06
Jonathan Larkin, post: 462143, member: 51686 wrote: Hi , thanks for reply - everything i want to do will be new recordings - and i have around 3 grand to spend on equipment and i would plan on spending some time with very necessary help from utube vidoes , other knowledgeable folks in my area - either for hire or out of the goodness of their hearts . so , again i`m a solo musician who plays multiple acoustic instruments - i only use 1 track / channel for recording at a time - i usually end up with about 10 tracks at a time - i then of course mix them down and clumsily master them down on to a c.d. In recording i 1st lay down a click track [ built in metronome ] sync my kick drum to it and use that as the beat reference to all future tracks - i use punch ins quite a bit as well as moving measures of music around and looping. that`s the extent of edit functions i need As far as effects go - i would only use them in mix down and that would be just reverb and equalization but i might try other things . If the mix doesn`t sound right then i would find an engineer - i would probably use an engineer anyway for mastering. I`m also planning on buying a computer - lap top would be ideal - as far as selling the 1880 - i have 3 of them in good working condition - but i don`t think i could get much beyond 500 bucks for all of them combined . But anyway , i would be very interested in knowing from you or any one else what you would buy if you were in my shoes . My ultimate goal is to make a somewhat pro recorded , sellable , album for a local and niche audience .
I should emphasize that i am fairly technically challenged but i am pretty good with 1 finger on the keyboard

kmetal Thu, 09/12/2019 - 12:04
My take on it is this. For no frills recording and simplicity the all in one is probably the way to go. Especially since the tascam doubles as an audio interface, you get the best of both work flows. I would reccomend you check out the akai mpcx too.

If ultimate sound quality (at least in specs), and easy editing and mixing, is the goal an interface and daw is the way to go. Since you don't need alot of channels in and out, you can get a very high quality interface within your budget.

Having not compared directly the quality of the tascam or others to high quality interfaces i can only go by the specs, which dont necessarily tell the whole story, and especially the subjective side of things. I do think that standalone recorders sound better than daws at equal price points. A little 300$ zoom seems to sound more solid to me than a 300$ interface. Although the closest ive come to a truly commercial quality recording, was at a commercial studio with a daw, and the once elite apogee rosetta. Reguardless of specs and age that thing still has a great sound.

I personally err towards a daw even as a solo mucisian doing one or two tracks at a time. Since mixing and editing are large parts of my process its the best way for. I also lean heavily on soft synths and midi programming at home which is a no brainer for me with cost and physical space being the main consideration.

I still enjoy the cassette based tascam portastudio and its quality is fine for me with acoustic singer/songwriter stuff i can play in one take. If thats all i did, id probably not bother with a computer, just a good pre amp and mic, (maybe eq and compresser too).

Theres alot of options for computers and interfaces at various price points, quality levels, and feature sets. Another thing to consider is the life span of a daw/interface is about 10 years at the high end. High end will typically still be better, even when entry level catches up to spec. The focusrite scarlett still does not sound like an apogee rosetta despite similar spec and prices, and the rosetta being nearly 15 years old.

Computer life spans are increasing since moores law is coming to and end. And computers are much further ahead of the daw curve than they were until 2012, where a daw was sure to devour even a premium workstation. With 6 core (12 thread) laptops available for 800$, 6 core (6 thread) desktops for 400$, and cores reaching over 4ghz, and crazy fast nvme ssd drives, there is alot of computing power available in the sub 1k range, and a blistering amount for 1k if you roll your own.

Fortunately in your case you dont require a high power pc. A nice ($800) msi laptop with its nvme drive, 6 core/12 thread intel chip, and room for a second drive internally for audio, 32gb ram capacity, would really suit your needs for a while. Your more likely to have to replace it due to some sort of hardware incompatibility like if windows went to 128bit, than replace it because it ran out of power. I could do 10 tracks on 366mhz pentuim 2 system from the mid 90's!!

It comes down to your preferred workflow and desired quality level. I would say tracking is simpler on a standalone, producing a start to finish project at home is probably better suited to a daw.

pcrecord Fri, 09/13/2019 - 10:04
Jonathan Larkin, post: 462143, member: 51686 wrote: Hi , thanks for reply - everything i want to do will be new recordings - and i have around 3 grand to spend on equipment and i would plan on spending some time with very necessary help from utube vidoes , other knowledgeable folks in my area - either for hire or out of the goodness of their hearts . so , again i`m a solo musician who plays multiple acoustic instruments - i only use 1 track / channel for recording at a time - i usually end up with about 10 tracks at a time - i then of course mix them down and clumsily master them down on to a c.d. In recording i 1st lay down a click track [ built in metronome ] sync my kick drum to it and use that as the beat reference to all future tracks - i use punch ins quite a bit as well as moving measures of music around and looping. that`s the extent of edit functions i need As far as effects go - i would only use them in mix down and that would be just reverb and equalization but i might try other things . If the mix doesn`t sound right then i would find an engineer - i would probably use an engineer anyway for mastering. I`m also planning on buying a computer - lap top would be ideal - as far as selling the 1880 - i have 3 of them in good working condition - but i don`t think i could get much beyond 500 bucks for all of them combined . But anyway , i would be very interested in knowing from you or any one else what you would buy if you were in my shoes . My ultimate goal is to make a somewhat pro recorded , sellable , album for a local and niche audience .
I worked with a 32ch mixer for a while with converters and got tired of the space and ordinary sound it got me . 3K mixer gets you near 50$ per preamps worth of quality.
So I went with an interface with included preamps and I also grow out of them by starting to buy external preamps. Got the interface updated over the year to my actual setup.

The questions you should be asking yourself is :
what level of quality do you expect to achieve ?
How many simultanous channels do you need ? (Guitar and voc (3 ch), recording drums (8ch) or full band (20ch))

If all you ever want to to do is compose and some demos and you already have a computer, I'd go with a small interface and a few mics
If you want the best sound and want to record full bands, your 3 grand will fall short. way short...

Good quality for the price : Audient interfaces and preamp units. Also RME is worth mentionning.
Lower priced highend preamps : Focusrite ISA

For acoustic guitar and voc, I would go with an Audient I22 (500$) with a ISA one (540$) with the digital card (429$).
Then a matched pair SDC like the Warm Audio WA-84 Stereo Pair - Black (750$) and the Mojave Audio MA-301fet (800$)
There goes your 3K :)

Jonathan Larkin Fri, 09/13/2019 - 10:23
pcrecord, post: 462153, member: 46460 wrote: I worked with a 32ch mixer for a while with converters and got tired of the space and ordinary sound it got me . 3K mixer gets you near 50$ per preamps worth of quality.
So I went with an interface with included preamps and I also grow out of them by starting to buy external preamps. Got the interface updated over the year to my actual setup.

The questions you should be asking yourself is :
what level of quality do you expect to achieve ?
How many simultanous channels do you need ? (Guitar and voc (3 ch), recording drums (8ch) or full band (20ch))

If all you ever want to to do is compose and some demos and you already have a computer, I'd go with a small interface and a few mics
If you want the best sound and want to record full bands, your 3 grand will fall short. way short...

Good quality for the price : Audient interfaces and preamp units. Also RME is worth mentionning.
Lower priced highend preamps : Focusrite ISA

For acoustic guitar and voc, I would go with an Audient I22 (500$) with a ISA one (540$) with the digital card (429$).
Then a matched pair SDC like the Warm Audio WA-84 Stereo Pair - Black (750$) and the Mojave Audio MA-301fet (800$)
There goes your 3K :)
i`m only talking about mixer/interface and computer - i`m already covered with mics and pre amp - black lion pre amp - mohave - tube mic , some large condenser mic. [ forgot name ] beyer dynamic - ribbon , 57`s, 58`s , etc. and I own three vs. 1880 roland recorders. my quest is to only be able to transfer individual tracks from Roland to a more modern apparatus for mixing/mastering by some one else or possibly myself. I would be up for changing around my recording apparatus if it means making it easier to get my tracks mixed . yes - i want a good sound , i thought what i got out of the roland was decent enough . I only need 2 channels for my needs . Thanks for input and any further recommendations - very much appreciated.

pcrecord Fri, 09/13/2019 - 11:37
Jonathan Larkin, post: 462154, member: 51686 wrote: i`m already covered with mics and pre amp & I only need 2 channels for my needs .
This is good info to start with.

Jonathan Larkin, post: 462154, member: 51686 wrote: i thought what i got out of the roland was decent enough
I have no doubt the Roland can record ok..
But converter qualities have immensely gone better since 2002..
I guess even you were searching for better when you bought the black lion preamp.
I never tried one, but the black lion isn't said to be the best preamp around either.

2 channels seems a bit limited for me, since I always record guitars with 2 mics (electrics too) , if you want to record the vocal at the same time.

I was mentionning the ISA preamp because they give 80db of clean gain with a touch of mojo. For quiet instruments or driving a ribbon mic, they are stellar.
I got 8 of them you see...

But in your situation and budget, you could well enough go for a small interface like an audient and gift your vocal with a nice channel strip.
The important thing is to get an interface that allows a direct path to converter connectivity. Sending a good preamp to another preamp is just wasting the goodness if you see what I mean.
So maybe the Audient ID44 and a Universal audio LA-610 ? you'd be surprised how good even a SM57 sounds through these !! ;)
Like the Roland, recording to a computer also have a learning curve. .But once in the box it's easier to send your recordings to an ME or backup drives and use more compatible file formats, like waves..

Of course I only see this from my point of view. I record solo artists and full bands who expect the best for the price they pay !

Jonathan Larkin Sat, 09/14/2019 - 07:33
pcrecord, post: 462155, member: 46460 wrote: This is good info to start with.


I have no doubt the Roland can record ok..
But converter qualities have immensely gone better since 2002..
I guess even you were searching for better when you bought the black lion preamp.
I never tried one, but the black lion isn't said to be the best preamp around either.

2 channels seems a bit limited for me, since I always record guitars with 2 mics (electrics too) , if you want to record the vocal at the same time.

I was mentionning the ISA preamp because they give 80db of clean gain with a touch of mojo. For quiet instruments or driving a ribbon mic, they are stellar.
I got 8 of them you see...

But in your situation and budget, you could well enough go for a small interface like an audient and gift your vocal with a nice channel strip.
The important thing is to get an interface that allows a direct path to converter connectivity. Sending a good preamp to another preamp is just wasting the goodness if you see what I mean.
So maybe the Audient ID44 and a Universal audio LA-610 ? you'd be surprised how good even a SM57 sounds through these !! ;)
Like the Roland, recording to a computer also have a learning curve. .But once in the box it's easier to send your recordings to an ME or backup drives and use more compatible file formats, like waves..

Of course I only see this from my point of view. I record solo artists and full bands who expect the best for the price they pay !
thanks - i might just go your suggested route - the universal audio pre amp sounds great as long as most of my recording

Jonathan Larkin Mon, 09/16/2019 - 09:57
thanks for all replies and info - i`ve done a little research - although it looks like it`s possible to still use roland vs, 188o and transfer tracks to computer 2 at a time - very slowly i understand and then i`m guessing syncing all tracks together [ 10] could be challenging for some one like me . does not seem worth it for future recordings when the quality would probably be sub par. I`m thinking an audient 114 into an i mac desk . If anybody has any thoughts on that i`d appreciate replies as always - oh yeah - the daw - for now just garage band as i`m as dumb as a bag of rocks when it comes to computery stuff. Big Thanks again