To Protools or not to Protools?

Discussion in 'Mixing & Song Critique' started by thebrooksman, Apr 24, 2005.

  1. thebrooksman

    thebrooksman Guest

    Hey everyone, This is a really nice forum you've got here!

    I've got a question for you all. I was able to get Protools 6.7 from a friend who wasn't using it anymore, however he no longer has any digi hardware to go with it. So basically all I have is software that won't run unless I get some digi hardware. I've read that they're only selling the 002 which is out of my price range, and the mbox, which only records two tracks at a time.

    I'm looking for something like 8 tracks. In the forums here I've seen plenty of other boxes for pretty cheap that record 8 at a time no sweat. Apparantly though protools can only run if you have digi hardware. First of all - is this true? And second of all, is it worth getting less channels than I want just to use protools? Or should I go for something else?

    Thanks in advance! :!:
  2. inLoco

    inLoco Active Member

    Jul 25, 2004
    get something else!!! look at the motu traveler, 828 mkII, 896HD... the digi 002 doesn't rank well compared with the same level priced gear!
  3. thebrooksman

    thebrooksman Guest

    Thanks inLoco, i'm leaning the same way for sure. Anyone else have any opinions?
  4. impro

    impro Guest

    Avid purchased MAUDIO.
    Protools runs on MAUDIO.
  5. itchy

    itchy Guest

    I agree 100% with inLoco. You can get more channels with equal or greater quality outside of Digidesign. I would check out motu as well. What is your price range?
  6. thebrooksman

    thebrooksman Guest

    I'm looking to spend 1000ish or less on this part of the setup. I really really like that Motu Traveler - its got 4 preamps, 8 channels, and its portable as hell in case a portable rig is ever in the cards for smaller jobs. What do you think of the Traveler? Is this a good way to get started?
  7. jonnyc

    jonnyc Member

    Apr 21, 2005
    first only pro tools M-powered works with maudio interfaces LE still requires a digi interface. Unless you're planning on going into pro studios or are really wanting to record bands all the time I wouldn't go with pro tools. I do have pro tools(002r to be exact) and I love it, its a little restricting compared to others but isn't bad. I doubt you could even use the software your friend gave you i mean i could give my disks away right now cause you only install them you don't need them over and over like a game. I'd check out cubase sx and a motu although your almost at a 002r price eventhough everyone thinks pro tools is so much more expensive. the traverler is 850 and cubase sx is 599 so 1450 would get you off to a great start. Now tell me how thats cheaper than pro tools.
  8. thebrooksman

    thebrooksman Guest

    Pricewise, I agree that their may not be much difference between ProTools and another solution. What worries me is the investment. If I get the 002r and ProTools - sure I have a great recording setup, but then i'm bound to that 002r no matter who comes out with other cool stuff. I'd like to have the flexibility to use different software. Am I thinking correctly here?
  9. itchy

    itchy Guest

    A good friend of mine was interested in getting the traveler recently, or the digi002. I am trying to convince him otherwise. If I were in the same place, I'd probably spend the extra $100 and get an 896HD. Comes with 8 preamps at $995, last I checked.

    The fact that the traveler is bus-powered shouldn't sway your decision. Actually, this same friend bought a m-audio firewire 410 recently, and it won't work for him 'bus-powered'. He has to use the adapter or it won't sync properly. That's why he's shopping again.

    Good luck on whatever you decide on!

    take care,
  10. thebrooksman

    thebrooksman Guest

    Thanks Eric for the tip. You've swayed me from the Traveler :) I just checked out the features and the 8 preamps for 100 bucks more is great! I'm sure that thing sound sweet too. Looks like that what i'm going to go for once the funds are available. Good work :lol: One other random question - would my console even be necessary then? It looks like the instruments and mics would connect directly to the Motu. My console only has four submix outs. Actually, how would you connect any board to this? Direct Outs?
  11. jonnyc

    jonnyc Member

    Apr 21, 2005
    You should be able to connect a firewire mixer if I'm thinking correctly, like a mackie and you should be able to control your tracks in your software with your mixer/control surface although having a control surface isn't needed.
  12. ghellquist

    ghellquist Member

    May 25, 2004
    Some small random thoughts.

    I did leave ProTools a while ago. Did not like beeing "locked" into the limited selection of PT LE hardware. This is for me more of a feeling than fact based. I went for a Motu 828 mkII and an 8 channel external preamp. Very happy with the choice.

    Also went for Samplitude as software. This is not cheaper, but instead very much a time and sound saver. Just beeing able to bounce at maximum speed, instead of beeing locked to doing it in real time has saved me a lot of frustration. < I can talk a long time about this, but I´ll refrain >

    Anyway some tidbits.

    -- my program (Sam) happily runs with whatever hardware I have connected. It goes from using my Motu 828mkII to using my MBox to using the inbuilt sound card without complaints. PT LE on the other had is tied to Digidesign hardware and will not even start.
    -- No laptop PC available on the market today does supply power on the firewire bus. (I have checked carefully). Some Mac laptops do. I would believe that most stationary PC-s do supply the power. (There is along discussion behind this).
    -- Listen to the 896HD. It does have a fan, which might be annoying (it is not loud, but still).
    -- you will very seldom need an external mixer if you have the 896HD, or as in my case the 828mkII which has about the same setup. The box has a mixer, allowing you to create up to four separate stereo mixes and send them out from the box. All mixing is done in the Motu box, without help from the host CPU. There is a controlling application you run in the host which make things easier, but it can be done from the front panel (not very intuitive if you ask me).

  13. axel

    axel Guest

  14. axel

    axel Guest

    that would hardly happen with a mac, the mac firewires have enough 'juice' pc firewires not :D
  15. PCM

    PCM Guest

    If you're gonna work with audio primarily, then there is no quuestion that Pro TOols is the best.

    ANYTHING else? MIDI, many many trax...then look elsewhere.

    Pro TOols in conjunction with DP 4.5 (which is what I use with PT) is a great and versatile setup and all of it will run on 002r.
  16. Duardo

    Duardo Guest

    Not quote. The 002R will work with other software. It's the other way around that won't work...Pro Tools will not work with any other hardware (with the exception of a few M Audio interfaces, but you'd have to buy a separate version of Pro Tools to run with them).

    If you're talking about connecting to the 896HD, you wouldn't connect it with a Firewire'd connect the analog or digital outputs of a mixer to its analog or digital inputs. And a Mackie mixer with Firewire wouldn't work to control your tracks as they're just analog mixers with A/D converters and a Firewire interface added one. Most digital mixers as well as control surfaces will control your tracks in software, but they typically connect to your system via MIDI or USB.

    This I find amusing. Sure, it's handy to be able to bounce something fast, but in the "good old" days nobody complained that it took four minutes to run a four-minute song. Am I the only one who likes to listen to a mix as it bounces to make sure everything is right?

  17. MarkEdmonds

    MarkEdmonds Guest

    Realtime bouncing in modern DAWs is ludicrous. The only time this should be needed is for external processing. I didn't realise PT has this limitation!

    As for listening, how do you know what you are listening to is going to disk?

    Personally, I think the only way to validate a DAW bounce is to play back the actual WAV. Auditioning the process is not the same thing unless you know the exact inside processing order of your DAW host software and you know it is playing back what is written to file.

  18. MarkEdmonds

    MarkEdmonds Guest

    I'd have a good look at Steinberg's SX3 or N3. I can't advise on Protools specifically but I do get the feeling that a lot of people recommend PT on the basis of its "name" and "marketing" value before they examine the feature set and on-going cost of plugins (etc.) when compared to other products.

  19. jonnyc

    jonnyc Member

    Apr 21, 2005
    I honestly like bouncing to disk in real time. I mean I can understand not being patient enough to wait a whole 4 minutes for a song but for me listening to whats bouncing is important, there have been a couple times I've noticed something that I missed and I'll stop it and correct it. Waiting a few minutes for a song to bounce doesn't bother me one bit, I know its an instant world we live in but I would never wanna rush to process of mixing and mastering. And Mark I doubt most people on here recommend pro tools because of the name or how its marketed, in fact I'd bet most people on here wouldn't recommend pro tools since most people with home studios use something other than pro tools. If you're someone who plans on having a commercial studio or you want to be compatable with a commercial studio then I'd say go with ptle, thats why I did.
  20. Duardo

    Duardo Guest

    Sure, that's the best way to validate a bounce, just like the only way to validate a mix in the "old days" was to listen back to it. I still like to listen to a mix as it goes and then I'll typically spot check the bounced file to make sure it's right, or even listen to the whole thing again if I'm really worried. I don't have a problem with faster-than-realtime bounces, but I certainly don't think that there's anything "ludicrous" about a realtime bounce either.


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