My first dedicated DAW rig. Suggestions?

Discussion in 'Computing' started by bunnerabb, Apr 15, 2004.

  1. bunnerabb

    bunnerabb Guest

    I'm a newbie and I'm specifically searching for some tips on a DAW PC that looks appealing. Most of the stuff I've been doing is live 2 track and multi-track, but I'm trying to put together a DAW that I can take out to do live location mulitracking.

    I'm an old school cat, to be honest, and I like my knobs and faders, but I really don't feel like trying to put a mobile together that could house the necessary analog gear on my budget, or getting a committed 24/24 HDR rig that would kill my DAW budget, since the pIII system I'm using at present is sorely in need of an upgrade.

    I'm looking at a refurbed HP Pavilion A375C, with a p4 3.0 GHz CPU, a 160 GB HDD, (sure to be replaced or doubled with a faster, SATA drive) that takes up to 4 GB (according to the fine folks at of DDR PC3200 CL=3 Non-parity RAM.

    The O/S is going to be either Windows XP Pro or Windows 2000 Professional. I have retail copies of both.

    For soundcards, the Terratec Phase 88's looked good for the money (can you tell I'm on a budget?) :D .

    They are drive bay mountable, and are capable of being daisy-chained on two PCI buses for a total of 16 tracks of input.

    What I need to know is:

    If I add a 24/24/8 inline console, can I take 16 of the direct outs and jack into the Teratecs under either ASIO 2.0 or DirectSound drivers and actually track 16 analog inputs simultaneously without making the computer go bananas?

    The whole idea of this rig is to function well - not only in my home studio - but to track live bands 16 tracks at a time, and mix in the box, then render the two track.

    I am looking at either Cubase SX or Nuendo for the softs.

    ANY advice about this rig and how stable it would be while tracking 16 analog inputs, simultaneously, shall be greatly appreciated.


    - bunner
  2. dabmeister music

    dabmeister music Active Member

    Jan 11, 2003
    Woodbridge, Va
    Home Page:
    Ever thought about building your own portable DAW? IMO, the components that are on the market now-a-days are equal if not better than what you'll find in any commercial setup. I've housed my setup in a rack server case which can be used for future upgrading. This is the route I'll take for my next project. With such a setup, you'll find it'll work with a decent 20 space rack or whatever suits your taste and maybe 2 decent sound cards. Also within this setup you can have a seperate dedicated backup system. I don't see why such a setup should'nt be within your means. PS, count in a power backup system too, rackmountable would be the thing to go with of course.
  3. bunnerabb

    bunnerabb Guest

    That's certainly not out of the question. I have become quite proficient at building PCs over the last few years, but the HP simply offers a lot of features for the price, and a small ammount of warranty support.

    The most important piece of advice I am seeking from the learned forum users, here is whether or not this system would remain stable and accurately track while recording 16 simultaneous inputs.

    Anybody tried doing that many simul tracks on a PC?

    I haven't.

    Thanks for your responses.

  4. bunnerabb

    bunnerabb Guest

    Any advice at all on 16 simultaneous tracks on a DAW with that hardware set?


  5. producerben

    producerben Guest

    I am sure that would be more than sufficient. I am a mac user myself and have recorded 16 ins on a 450 mhz G4 without any problems. Just make sure that you have enough inputs with your soundcards... your hardrives are fast enough (any 7200 rpm drive will be) and you should be all set.

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