want to buy a good studio quality soundcard

Discussion in 'Converters / Interfaces' started by Deusx, Mar 3, 2005.

  1. Deusx

    Deusx Active Member

    Feb 21, 2005
    hi there every 1 i have a 1000$ budget to purchase a good soundcard
    a friend of mine has a aardvark pro q10 , he says its a very good card, i need suggestions if there are any other choices that lie in the budget i have.
    i would really appreciate your help.
    cards other than creative labs, which i've already used.
  2. tubes4tone

    tubes4tone Guest

    Well, to get good help from the folks around here you have to provide a lot more information. I'll start the process by asking some of the important questions:

    Are you new to recording (it's hard to tell from your post)?

    How many inputs do you need to record at the same time?

    What is the intended purpose of the new soundcard: to record your own musical ideas for archival/memory, to create demo's for full bands, or produce a professional full length album?

    What other equipment do you currently have? This will help those who may have more experience give you advice on maybe spending a little money on something else besides just the soundcard.

    There's more, but I'm just trying to get the ball rolling.
  3. Deusx

    Deusx Active Member

    Feb 21, 2005
    uh oh i posted my second reply to this topic but i don't know where it went even after submission. i was concious why am i not getting an answer from the helping dudes.
    so here i write again.
    i want to purchase a card for recording purposes that could serve me even when i would want to recrod my stuff commercially. where i live, any one can hardly find a good quality product for music to buy, so i have to get it from some other country maybe,my relatives who live abroad could bring it for me,
    so please suggest me something that could help me for a longer period.
    down is the list of instruments that i would want to record on the sound card, and the software i use.
    a pc pentium 4 2.4 ghz 256 mb ram.
    lead guitar
    rythm guitar
    midi keyboard

    it would be excellent if all of this could be recorded at the same time at least if drums are not included.
    win xp
    native instruments absynth 2.0 demo
    cakewalk + sonar 4

    i play guitar and want to get into music professionaly.
    i also want to know about monitors and a good midi keyboard to purchase as i like to work with software synthesizers.
    thanks a lot for the first reply.
  4. 0db

    0db Active Member

    Feb 19, 2005
    Sonar and/or Cakewalk works fine with hardware that comes with WDM audio Drivers. Don´t know if sonar 4 supports ASIO drivers which are better for less latency. (a word that will come up every time you use a virtual synth or similar, meaning the delay between the sound and the time it is played)

    Almost any Audio Card comes with WDM drivers: M-Audio, ECHO, etc. I Had (prior to have my DIGI 001) a M-Audio Delta 1010 Rack version and it was very good, 10 CH Input / Output (counting digital as 2 inputs) , Digital I/Os and MIDI I/Os. 96K / 24 Bit support for high resolution recordings. Along with Sonar 2, it sounded very nice..........But since you want to take it "seriously" maybe you should ask other people about PROTOOLS hardware/software combo. I use DIGI001 (cost me 890$) but it´s discontinued, there´s also the DIGI002 but it costs around 2000$. The advantage of using this system, is that you can be sure that it will work fine, sounds fine, and most recording studios around the world uses protools, so keep in mind that you can actually start a recording at home and mix elsewhere.....versatility....

    There a lot of other solutions, don´t rush to take a desicion yet. Ask, ask, ask, and wait until others in the forum give their opinions and then decide.

    i´m considering your budget and expertise, and my experience with that hardware/software was very good.
  5. Arrowfan

    Arrowfan Guest

    Look into the MOTU 896HD. They recently lowered their prices putting the 896HD under $1,000.

    You'll have 8 analog in/out with nuetrix connections, entirely stable drivers for Mac and PC (ASIO and WDM), expandability (ADAT or additional MOTUs), 16 programmable meters, front panel trims for each channel, some nice digital mixer features (CueMix) .... and 8 preamps.

    The preamps aren't anything to write home about and you can easily by-pass them if you want. But for the price, the 896HD is hard to beat.

    Since it uses firewire to interface with computer, its quite portable and makes and excellent remote interface when used with a laptop.

    Oh, I should add: they actually have excellent support, my 896HD got fried and for a flat rate of $50 they replaced the unit entirely and sent it to me in Europe with UPS. The shipping alone must have cost them a couple hundred bucks.
  6. Deusx

    Deusx Active Member

    Feb 21, 2005
    yes definitely Odb i would do that,well i see that there are different drivers built for the cards, is it possible to switch to a different driver if the 1st one doesn't do well. as you tell that the digi 001 has been discontinued, can you give me the reason why and is it bad or ok, if such thing happens with a soundcard.

    is there any surety of any soundcards right now in the market that
    if i buy any 1 of them would work fine for a longer period.

    i could not understand this
    does this mean 10ch i/o + 2 digital channels separate

    i would like to study about the analog and digital i/o suggest me a web link
    and can any 1 give a list of features that a very good sound card has so i can compare it with the choise of my selected 1.

    i need to know more about the programmable meters,adat motus
    PREAMPS especially and etc.

    you mentioned it uses firewire interface does the card also use a pci interface too, or cards only use one interface.

    "aren't anything to write home about" in what situations do we use them.

    Guys thank you very much for your replies
  7. Arrowfan

    Arrowfan Guest

    The firewire interface is also refered to as IEEE 1394. Most laptops come with an IEEE port. If your desktop doesn't have IEEE ports you can get a standard PCI card for about $20.

    The MOTU 896HD preamps really aren't that bad. They just can't compete with preamps that cost upwards of $200 per preamp! I used them for aout 8 years without problem. Their main use is for a remote studio setup. You can live multitrack 8 channels at 24 bit / 96 Khz resolution using only a laptop and the 896HD!

    But that doesn't mean the 896HD doesn't offer excellent value as a home studio audio interface. Its a pro audio interface. Check out MOTU's website for pictures and complete specs http://www.motu.com follow links to 896HD.

    The digital in/outs you asked about refer to the S/PDIF connection (2 channels: left and right as per use with a DAT machine). The 896HD has this connection as well in addition to ADAT.

    It means that if you have a DAT machine and an ADAT machine you can get: 8 ch analog + 2 ch DAT, and 8 ch ADAT. So, 18 channels.

    The nice thing about the 896HD is that all 18 channels can be used within the CueMix console. Basically, you can use the 896HD as a digital mixer. A very very nice feature.

    But, don't let DAT and ADAT connectivity confuse you. 8 ch. of audio is pretty damn good for the price, consider the stable drivers, portability, preamps, metering, and front panel volume controls as freebies. (I have yet to bother connecting my DAT machine with my 896HD, 8 ch. was plenty and I've since bought another 896HD for 16 ch analog)

    MOTU hardware is what made that company famous.
  8. Deusx

    Deusx Active Member

    Feb 21, 2005
    wow :eek: i visited the site motu and read all specs of their audio interfaces and motu 896hd really impresses me with its features
    , i am reading them many times and doing searches to understand the audio terms and stuff.
    now i've a question about the 8 i/o ie does it mean that at the same time 8 different instruments can be recorded.eg 8 guitars
    :D or any other combinations.

    i would probably buy this audio interface if i could from England as my relatives can do the job for me, i live in Pakistan.
    would i be able to get this equipment under 1000$, if not, what do you suggest, i have never bought anything online.
    Thanks for the reply.
  9. ShellTones

    ShellTones Guest

    For $1,000 I'd look at the one of the three Lynx 2 cards. From the posts I've read in all of the recording forums, the Lynx cards are more than a step above the MOTU.
  10. Deusx

    Deusx Active Member

    Feb 21, 2005
    i checked out lynx 2 , it has pretty good features but still there are only 6 maximum i/o 's which troubles me.

    plus i would prefer a portable sound card.
    thanks for the reply.
  11. Deusx

    Deusx Active Member

    Feb 21, 2005
    On the MOTU 896HD there are Eight XLR outputs what is there basic and advance usage. i don't have a mixer neither monitors. i have connected my stereo deck with my sound card. (sb live)

    i have read about the nutrik connectors for the first time, i've been using simple RCA mono jack cables for my guitar to plug in to my effects processor.

    what type of connector cables do i need to connect:
    1 my guitar into the motu896hd
    2 what are other types of cables do i need to connect other equipment into the I/O 's of the motu 896hd.
  12. Deusx

    Deusx Active Member

    Feb 21, 2005
    can any 1 give me a good but easy spec information for lynx 2 , i want to know how is it better than motu 896hd
  13. Arrowfan

    Arrowfan Guest

    The Lynx2 system looks interesting but it's entirely dependant on a computer to do anything at all.

    With the MOTU you have a real piece of hardware - 8 preamps and 4 mix bus outputs, real knobs for level trim, real meters for signal metering. It can work without a computer. And with a computer ... well there's your 8 ins being recorded at 24 bit / 96 Khz.

    But I'm not sure this level audio interface will be useful for you....

    for example, with the 896HD you would typically connect mics and use the preamps to boost the signal to levels suitablel for busing into computer.

    You can also plug your guitar -or any electric instrument- directly into the MOTU inputs (use standard patch cable), the preamp will get the dry guitar up to level.

    [Would be only about 1billion times nicer if you could mic your guitar amp but it doesn't sound like you've got one yet. ]

    Do you have a need to record 8 tracks all at once? For example, mic a percussion setup using, say, 5 mics, then use the other 3 inputs for guitar, bass and vocals. All at once, live.

    But I think you might be better off getting a smaller system + some mics.

    For Example: a cheap 4 channel audio interface (M-audio maybe?), a 12 ch mixer (which has 4 preamps), and 4 decent mics (3 SM57s and a B1) and 4 XLR cables ... all for about $1.2k (or for much cheaper if your connection in UK can shop used).

    Use your money to get a wider variety of tools rather than putting it all into one tool. The 896HD would be a great unit for you but not until you have some mics, an amp, etc.
  14. Lerxst

    Lerxst Guest

    1) The inputs on the MOTU 896 are dual type connectors. You can plug in XLR or 1/4 inch into the same jack.

    2) Primarily XLR and 1/4 inch. If you are using digital, it has an AES/EBU I/O and an optical as well.

    I use a couple of these daisy chained together and they have worked well for me.
  15. Deusx

    Deusx Active Member

    Feb 21, 2005
    Boss i am confused, i mean please can you explain why would it be better to use mic instead putting my guitar into the card through a processor.
    i've already bought a lin 6 xt effects processor didn't go for an amp so, wouldn't it do a good job if i connect the guitar through processor in the input of the motu. if everything has to be recorded through a mic than how would i utilize my effect processors.

    Ofcourse i know that i am looking for something that right now is much advance in use for me but the point why i am looking for such gear is that i am sure i wont be able to purchase or do an upgrade for the next 4 or more years, and all this is a part of my future plans. and i am very much quality conscious
    so please
    dont suggest me a cheap gear. i highly appreciate your replies. :)

    i just wanted to know whether it is possible to record all these instruments at one time, is it a good or bad thing to do so.

    do the inputs have a specific arrangement to plug in the desired instrument or mike i.e can the guitar,bass or vocals mic cable be inserted in any of the inputs.

    In retrieving all the required equipment my other friends are included in this job ,
    vocalist = buy vocal mics
    drummer = buy drum mics
    rythm guitarist = may buy an amp(i'll pressurize him to do that) :twisted:
    me now can't afford a good mixer, thats why looking for a competitive audio interface.
    i again acknowledge that i am a novice yet but i've total confidence in my self that i will be a great musician.i've left every thing for my passion "Music", as in my country a very few sources are available to get help of this kind. but iam ready and already accepted this challenge. so keep guiding me and tell me a few books i could get help from.
    Thanks Arrowfan and Lerxst for the replies.

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