Attn Dark Side Mac Users - PC to MAC DAW

Discussion in 'Computing' started by jscott, Dec 4, 2001.

  1. jscott

    jscott Guest

    Ok - I know many of the virtues of the MAC, though I have a high powered PC/SCSI system. I want to make the change but know precious little about MAC's other than the favor they have gained in the music world. Besides, I like the term "gigaflop".

    I use Logic Platinum 4.8, Sound Diver 3.0, MOTU stuff 2408mkII (will be upgrading to Lucid converters. Got the MTP AV thing goin on, Large sequences with at least 12 tracks audio, up to 24. Not a huge plugin user, but do use a few.

    What is it I need to know about the new G4's and OSX? Anything? Pitfalls? Will this stock unit give me what I want?

    867MHz PowerPC G4
    256K L2 & 2MB L3 cache
    256MB SDRAM memory
    60GB+80GB Ultra ATA drive
    NVIDIA GeForce2 MX
    Gigabit Ethernet
    56K internal modem

    Guide me!
  2. Opus2000

    Opus2000 Well-Known Member

    Apr 7, 2001
    may I ask why it is you want to change? Is your PC not doing what it should be? With only 24 tracks of audio tops most PC's are able to handle that very very easily...let me know on that one..
    As far as Mac OSX...well..still under development...MacOSX is indeed quite a kluge of application's several layers of coding..Java..Cocoa..Unix..Linux..and more..until software and hardware companies write drivers or rewrite their codes to work with the new OSX...I've seen rumors of 10.2 coming out next summer and that revision is supposed to be primarily an audio upgrade to the OS! We'll see how that goes tho!!
    Macs do have their quirks as well as PC's...wars will be waged till the end of days over these two platforms..but I'll have to say this....PC's have definately made their mark just in the last few months or so..especially with Win2k being very stable and XP creeping up as well..Macs can have an advantage but there's still the MIDI issue..OMS or FreeMidi? And what is the story with OMS and does Apple actually have it implimented into OSX? Hmmm....lots o q's indeed..
  3. Nate Tschetter

    Nate Tschetter Active Member

    Feb 28, 2001

    I run LAMP 4.7-something (I don't upgrade unless something doesn't work) with MTPAV and a 2408 on a G4/400. I regularly get 32 - 40 tracks out of the internal ATA drive and a good amount of problem. All this running with OS 9.(whatever it is.)

    I wouldn't use OS X until its steady for at least 6 months, at which time I'll probably get a new Mac too.

    Get more memory (its cheap), replace the internal modem with a Stealth Serial Port and you'll be rocking. The Stealth will be WAY better than a USB interface that requires you to use OMS. I'd avoid using OMS or FreeMIDI with Logic. They're simply not necessary. FreeMIDI is fine with Performer and other MOTU stuff...but with Logic, its a needless layer of complexity.

    So the answer to your question is that, yes, you'll have enough computer (and more!) to do what you want. Use OS 9 until Emagic works out all the bugs with LAMP 5 and OS X.
  4. jscott

    jscott Guest

    To my friend OPUS2000

    The change is not performance related as much as it is a desire to experience the "other side".

    My current setup uses 2 Atlas 10KII 36GB Ultra160 drives w/Adaptec 36160 controller, Yamaha CDRW DRIVE 16X/10X/40X SCSI, PIII 933, 256 mem, Abit SE6, MILLENNIUM G450 DUAL 16MB AGP.

    So it's not a bad setup. The only problem I've had is the 39160 controller card, and its been a while since I installed it, so I do not remember the exact issue although I think it was that it required 2-IRQ because it was dual channel, but I remember determining I would have rather used ATTO's cards, and probably an ASUS board like the CUSL2.

    I take it you are recommending Win2K?

    I did go to your site and look at your "tweaking" docs briefly, I will look through them in much more detail over the next day or so and see if there is something I may have missed along the way.

    I would say in general my only complaint is that the MTP AV is a parallel interface (which appears to be creating some timing problems), how eloquently the programs and hardware work together. But more to the point its just a desire to learn the MAC side.

    Do you think it better to stay PC?

    As for OS-X

    Unless I'm mistaken or have been misinformed, it comes on the new MAC's and the core portion has OS9 which can run concurrently, or boot to eitehr one. At least this was the pitch I got. Like I said, I'm not a MAC guy at the moment. My life has been all PC, thus far.

    I was also told, that if I desire, I can simply take my existing SCSI HD's out of the PC and use them in the MAC, with a MAC SCSI controller, which seems logical because the 39160 I have I do not think is cross platform compliant.

    To use my MTP AV, it seems I must have to get some form of adaptor, because the only out I have on it is the 8-pin serial and near as I can tell, the new G4's have no such input???
  5. Marc Edwards

    Marc Edwards Member

    Oct 4, 2000
    I'm not going to pass judgement on the whole PC vs Mac thing, but I will try to answer some questions.

    - The G4 you mention would be great for your needs.
    - Your SCSI card and drive shouldn't have any problems whatsoever performing as well, if not better in it's new home.
    - OMS is garbage--a good idea that never really performed the way you'd like it to. Logic is insane with its internal MIDI and AMT (using either the Unitor or AMT, serial or USB--all good!)
    - Yes, new Macs come pre-installed with OS9.2 and OS X. I'd be using OS9 for at least the next 6 months. OS X WILL be great, but for now I like things to work!
    - Your MOTU should also be good to go, simply by swapping the cards and giving Logic the ASIO driver it needs.

    I don't know anyone who's ever regreted making the change from PC to Mac. I do know a lot of people that bitch about Mac's that don't use them.

    Good luck.
  6. Opus2000

    Opus2000 Well-Known Member

    Apr 7, 2001
    hold on there with the SCSI compatability....most likely you will need to format them for HFS format..they're formatted for Fat file table right now and Macs dont read that!!! Just to let you know!!
  7. Nate Tschetter

    Nate Tschetter Active Member

    Feb 28, 2001

    The Stealth Serial Port I mentioned is how you connect your MTP AV to the Mac. USB and Logic will force you to use OMS unless (I think) you get Emagic MIDI interfaces.

    I'm not positive but your PC drives may actually come up on the Mac. Every PC drive I've ever stuck in a Mac has with no problem.
  8. jscott

    jscott Guest

    Originally posted by Marc Edwards:
    Logic is insane with its internal MIDI and AMT (using either the Unitor or AMT, serial or USB--all good!)

    - Your MOTU should also be good to go, simply by swapping the cards and giving Logic the ASIO driver it needs.

    Thanks for the Info! A couple follow ups?

    Logic is "Insane" - meaning very good I take it?

    Any thoughts on the timing issue via parallel port to PC, vs MAC 8-pin serial?

    Is there an adaptor that anyone knows of for USB/FWIRE to 8-pin, or is the serial card above the ticket? I checked MAC Mall and Apple, but couldn't really tell if I was even looking for the right thing.

    And, how 'bout that Unitor, any good, same as the MTP AV for MIDI ports? Now that I have owned the MTP AV (bought to do ADAT sync but no longer do it), I wonder if there is an advantage to a change?
  9. Marc Edwards

    Marc Edwards Member

    Oct 4, 2000
    Mac's have been able to read PC formated disks for years now, just plug it in and it'll work, although I doubt this would be the best way to run it. I would have thought that reformatting the drive is hardly a big issue here.

    Yes, insane = VERY GOOD :D I think they are the best MIDI interfaces i've seen by a mile. You can stack 8 on each port if you like giving you a total of 8*8*3 MIDI buses = 3072 MIDI channels. I don't know why that would be a good thing, but anyway... :roll:

    The stealth serial port is great, I've been using one for ages with no problems at all.

    Any MTP compatible interface can be run 'native' in Logic via serial (ie. no OMS/FreeMIDI). I'm not sure about USB, but Emagic are pretty on the case with that kind of stuff.
  10. jscott

    jscott Guest

    Thank you for your time Marc.

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