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#1039739 - 02/18/06 08:06 PM Recording entire board at a show
hypermow Offline
Member

Registered: 02/18/06
Posts: 7
Basically I do live sound and alot of the younger bands are asking for live multitrack recordings. there's one bunch that shows up with a laptop and a firepod 8 channel . I am loking for suggestions as for hardware as I believe there is a market for the sound capture for later mixdown. Basically I want to do what Mackie is pushing with the ONYX 1640 and the fire wire interface but I Dont really like Mackie product. I have a Allen_heath Mixwizard 16:2DX which has dir out on each channel and I'm kind of oldschool and prefer to mix down with my fingers on the buttons so to speak and seeing as the ONYX is 16 in 2 out I'd be stuck on the computer to do a simple mix down. Basically I forsee just making rough demo's with this so a quick and dirty trip back through the muxer / fx rack and into a puter mastering suite should do it.


Really I am looking for a true 16 in 16 out interface, so I have condidered using 2 Maudio 1010lt's. the RME hdsp9652 with 2 input modules and 2 output modules and the MOTU 24I/O setup(which would give me an extra 8 ch for room mics extra drms etc that aren't needed for the live gig)


Honestly this is a PC project and the PC will be a 3 space case living in the rack so the interface type matters very little.

thanks for any and all advice, I think I'm hunting for a product there isn't a large market for since most stuff is either 8 channels or huge.

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#1039740 - 02/18/06 11:56 PM Re: Recording entire board at a show
Bill@Welcome Home Studios Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 08/23/03
Posts: 9613
Look at the RME Multiface (not the Multiface II) and a spare converter set from Behringer.

Now, from a practical standpoint, these guys are saving a fortune by having you do this, so don't be shy about charging some serious money for the service. Also, if anyone wants to plug into your rig, that should also be a charge. (Basically, anything that causes you to do more work, you should get paid for.)



Bill
_________________________
"I believe that entertainment can aspire to be art, and can become art, but if you set out to make art you're an idiot."

Steve Martin

Show business: we're all here because we're not all there.


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#1039741 - 02/19/06 05:30 PM Re: Recording entire board at a show
hypermow Offline
Member

Registered: 02/18/06
Posts: 7
I'm starting to think that the motu 24 i/o is the wat to go at $1400 for 24 channels 24/96

seeing as the rme interface+pci host card and another 8 ch AD DA is going to run around $1200 and am i correct in assuming the extra 8 channels will only be at 48 khz?

Basically I let them do the plug in thing 2 times and honestly it was a pain in the ass having another person crawling around stage twiddling with my mic placment etc and leeching the gain of the mics with splitters etc. but If I can have it paid for itself in 30 months and pull in more work in the meantime it will be worth it.I'm thinking somewhere around a 20-35% premium for a bar show and it might also increase the jam spot revenue again...

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#1039742 - 02/19/06 06:49 PM Re: Recording entire board at a show
Bill@Welcome Home Studios Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 08/23/03
Posts: 9613
"...it was a pain in the ass ..."

which is why you should get paid for it.

I'm not a fan of MOTU. When it works it works great, but if you have a problem, you are screwed. That was the interface that I bought just prior to my first RME.

Now, someone on another forum suggested that an RME 9652 and three $250 Behringer interfaces would be a better way to go.

As far as 96 verses 48k, I've been working in 96 for years. But if I'm recording a band in a bar, 48 is fine. You'll never hear the difference. You can trust me on this and save some money.

Bill
_________________________
"I believe that entertainment can aspire to be art, and can become art, but if you set out to make art you're an idiot."

Steve Martin

Show business: we're all here because we're not all there.


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#1039743 - 02/20/06 11:16 PM Re: Recording entire board at a show
hypermow Offline
Member

Registered: 02/18/06
Posts: 7
Another suggestion was an alesis HD24 unit which is about 1600 and is standalone 24 track hdd recorder with 2 hotswap bays I was thinking with the computer I could just burn tha data to DVD'd ans hand it over but with that unit each band could get their own HDD, it just uses regular IDE drives.

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#1039744 - 02/21/06 06:55 AM Re: Recording entire board at a show
Bill@Welcome Home Studios Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 08/23/03
Posts: 9613
Quote:
Originally posted by hypermow:
Another suggestion was an alesis HD24 unit which is about 1600 and is standalone 24 track hdd recorder with 2 hotswap bays I was thinking with the computer I could just burn tha data to DVD'd ans hand it over but with that unit each band could get their own HDD, it just uses regular IDE drives.
That is a computer. But you give up the advantages to having the computer. Why not just record to the computer and be done with it?

Bill
_________________________
"I believe that entertainment can aspire to be art, and can become art, but if you set out to make art you're an idiot."

Steve Martin

Show business: we're all here because we're not all there.


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#1039745 - 02/21/06 11:01 AM Re: Recording entire board at a show
monitorguy Offline
Member

Registered: 02/28/05
Posts: 24
Loc: Missouri
Hypermow, while I've had good results using the Alesis unit, it sounds decent and hasn't crashed once, the files the Alesis writes are NOT wav files initially. Your "clients" would have to either have you transfer and convert the files using the Alesis unit OR you would have to purchase an Alesis firewire interface and install the included software. So the Alesis would probably not give you the capability of handing over ready to use files of tracks to the band. But it also gives you the chance to add another service to the bands you work with. Record them with their permission and then listen to the tracks after the show. If they are worth your time and hassle, give the band a price for mixing the show and develop that home studio! It's a great way to expand your skills and critique your engineering skills.

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#1039746 - 02/21/06 10:53 PM Re: Recording entire board at a show
hypermow Offline
Member

Registered: 02/18/06
Posts: 7
Well both of you have good points but in live situations I apply the KISS theory if the alesis unit basically works lika VCR it looks like the way to go,

Monitorguy Do you have any experiance with the Fireport ascessory for rhe alesis? If it make the drive trays swappable to other computers it might be worthwhile.

As far as taking a computer to gigs well lets just say these are live bar shows for the most part not soft seaters.

I'm really thinking of this as more of a hook to have people requesting my services for production more so than the studio aspect of it.

thanks for the advice.

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#1039747 - 02/22/06 06:47 AM Re: Recording entire board at a show
Bill@Welcome Home Studios Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 08/23/03
Posts: 9613
For what you have written, I get the impression thata you have not done this before. I have, many times, for more than 27 years. So you can take advantage of my experience or not, as you choose.

If you record to the computer, you can dump the audio at faster than real time to DVD as data, standard wave files that everyone can use. This is your fastest and most efficient option. You can also pull up the files on your recording software and block edit out a lot of blank space very quickly, so that you don't waste disk space. You would be able to dump each set to disc, between sets, at a minimal time cost or involvement... still leaving you plenty of time to do what you normally have to do during that break. At the end of the night you can probably dump the last set to disc in the time it takes the band to break down.

If you go with the Alesis or any other proprietary hard disk recorder, you are stuck spending a lot of time transfering data. This quote from the Alesis site:

"With their patent-pending method of writing to the hard drive, HD24 and HD24XR are the first hard disk recorders built from the ground up exclusively for the purpose of recording music instead of data "

That says to me that, though it may use cheap drives, it uses a proprietary file format. From what is said there, I would gather that this would not be able to be imported into any standard program. So now you have to play back the recording into some editing format to hand it off to your client. When do you have time to do this? A four hour show means four hours of playback. And then you still need to have the computer with the ADAT interface to get the data from the Alesis to a format that the bands can use.

Wouldn't it be cheaper and more time efficent to just get the Multiface and a $250 Behringer converter set and a program like Sonar or something, and not have this idea cost you huge chunks of time?

Just my thoughts.

The other, even simpler option is to deny any hookups of multitrack gear into your gear, and either offer:
1. a mic splitter at the stage. Let them tap in for a flat fee (say, $50... less than it would cost them to rent the splitter snake...) and make their own recordings to whatever format they want. Simple, clean, and cost effective.

or,

2. Get a CD recorder, like the Tascam, and offer them a standard 2 track mix for a flat rate... "this is you, live."


Bill
_________________________
"I believe that entertainment can aspire to be art, and can become art, but if you set out to make art you're an idiot."

Steve Martin

Show business: we're all here because we're not all there.


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#1039748 - 02/23/06 01:15 PM Re: Recording entire board at a show
monitorguy Offline
Member

Registered: 02/28/05
Posts: 24
Loc: Missouri
Bill, let me start by saying you give great advice. I don't want to recommend a solution at all. I think Hypermow needs to understand the benefits of both systems. It depends on his needs. If Hypermow's bar is like any of the ones I worked in, there is no room for a CRT and the added expense of a LCD being placed in proximity to drunk people telling you to turn it up would make me think hard also. It's hard to justify spending money on a computer that gets left in a bar filled with smoke, beer and girlfriends who tell you that they can't hear their boyfriend. On the other hand, the computer is upgradeable, expandable as well as being a very powerful tool in the studio.

I get my experience with the Alesis because a friend shelled out the cash and lets me borrow it to do essentially the same thing Hypermow wants to do. It's great for me to be able to buy a cheap hard drive, patch it into the board and go. After the gig, I can go back home with the drive and the Fireport and "relatively" quickly transfer the "files" to my computer for mixing. I don't have to worry about getting the files to the band. I basically just use the tracks to practice mixing and to critique methods and experiment with different mics, techniques, etc. The portability of the Alesis is what makes it possible for me to accomplish what I want to do and because of our friendship, there have been no issues with borrowing or loaning or care of the equipment. I think that issue would be the biggest concern Hypermow will face building relationships with bands as he goes forward increasing his services. It seems to me that the real question here is how much is it worth to Hypermow to chase down bands after they leave the bar with thier hard drive and the Fireport and no experience hooking the 2 up to a computer, finding the application/drivers needed to transfer the files, successfully transferring files and then getting the Fireport back from the band so that another band can do the same process. Hypermow, this is the part of the process that will make or break the deal. I would not want to hassle with making sure gear was returned to me. "Well, I gave it to the bass player because my kids downloaded a virus and then he gave it the guitar player so he could have the files" and so on. Sure it can be done but I'm lucky enough to be busy enough not to want to deal with all that BS. If you have no desire to mix the project or to deal with the band after the show, being able to hand them a DVD with usable WAV files and watching them walk out the door gets my vote for customer satisfaction. At that point you have to find out if the system you invest in can pay itself off working for local bands that often play for little more than beer and pizza and the take at the door. It seems like a business decision to me. What are bands in your area willing to pay for the service? Do they need/want multitracks or is a 2 track more practical? Where do your interests lie? Do you want to mix these bands in a studio? What gear that you buy now could be used in the future or expanded or upgraded? I guess the real question is who are you doing this for, the bands or yourself? Ask the bands what they would prefer. Maybe they don't want to deal with having to make the Fireport work and then return it to you. Maybe they need a studio to do overdubs or a control room to mix in. Maybe they want to live out the rock star fantasy in your control room by trashing the couch and raiding your refridgerator.

I will stop rambling now.

Yes Hypermow, I have experience with the Fireport. It is available at an added expense and allows the user to hook up a removable drive caddy to thier computer using a firewire cable. It's about the size of a pack of cigarettes and has it's own power supply. It is a much quicker process of transferring files into a computer than using the Ethernet method that requires an FTP program, CAT 5 cable and a little computer geek experience setting up IP addresses. I found that after one attempt at using the networking process, transferring a live show, say 2 hours in length was way too long for my tastes. I think I left it to transfer overnight. That could be a deal breaker if the band wants hear tracks right away or needs access to the tracks in a hurry. It's been a while since I've used the Fireport so I can't give you an idea about actual times but the Ethernet method transfers files at 10 Mb/sec while Firewire has a spec of 400Mb/sec. For me $200 for the Fireport is well worth while.

Hope this helps.

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#1039749 - 02/26/06 01:14 PM Re: Recording entire board at a show
Farview Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 78
Loc: Chicago-ish
I have been doing this same thing every once in a while with the allen & heath and a set of DA-88's. (because I had them around) The biggest problem I have with the setup is the fact that that boards direct outs are post eq and fader. When I'm mixing this stuff, I have to spend a lot of time un-doing what I needed to do to get the FOH mix together. That is a pain in the ass.
_________________________
Jay Walsh Farview Recording - And check out Farview's Drumagog Rock Drum samples !!!

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#1039750 - 03/01/06 01:09 AM Re: Recording entire board at a show
Bill@Welcome Home Studios Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 08/23/03
Posts: 9613
Quote:
Originally posted by Farview:
The biggest problem I have with the setup is the fact that that boards direct outs are post eq and fader.
Many times this is a simple board-level modification that can be done for you innexpensively at your local pro audio repair shop.

Bill
_________________________
"I believe that entertainment can aspire to be art, and can become art, but if you set out to make art you're an idiot."

Steve Martin

Show business: we're all here because we're not all there.


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#1039751 - 03/01/06 04:26 PM Re: Recording entire board at a show
Farview Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 01/11/06
Posts: 78
Loc: Chicago-ish
SSSHHHHH!!!! I'm using that as my excuse not to do it any more. I only have 3 working DA88's (out of 5) anymore. They aren't worth fixing because of the cost so bouncing them around doesn't seem like a good idea. Besides, it's not my board.
_________________________
Jay Walsh Farview Recording - And check out Farview's Drumagog Rock Drum samples !!!

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#1039752 - 03/06/06 05:02 PM Re: Recording entire board at a show
hypermow Offline
Member

Registered: 02/18/06
Posts: 7
I've alredy switched the jumpers for pre fade direct out, as for pre EQ I'm waiting for A-H tech support to get back to me

I'm still weighing my options and I'm getting rigged up for the summer and have a few bids on some festival work which if I win the contract means I will be buying a new 24x8 150' snake with a turnaround box (or breakout) whuich would be perfect for the computer+ MOTU idea.

Ive spoken with a few Alesis owners and basically they said the files are there as .aiff amd .wav its just the disk managment that is proprietary, eg if you only record 13 tracks the disk space for 16 is used.

I had an HHB 2 track recorder as well as Minidisk, and have done the 2 room mic thing but it was more of a pain than a profitable venture, I still do it for longstanding clients but really I'm wanting to generat a little niche here, the unfortunate thing is that around here once one guy offers a service theres another 8 crawling out of the cracks, My light show is all Martin/High End gear , wasn't long after I had it that 2 other Dj rigs popped up with American DJ/Chauvet crappo stuff.

Basically If I can feed the Alesis with the Dir out of the board and have it live in the roll around rack it is quite tempting but basically it has to bring in $35 a weekend for 2 years to justify it

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