- 6th August 2015 at 19:18 #26332AlanParticipant
I would like to use your for live recording, taking analog output from (3) Focusrite OctoPre units (24-tracks) via the DB-25 inputs and record to either a USB thumb drive or SSD. 48kHz 24bit would be ok for most things, but 96kHz would be nice to have available. I’m concerned that USB 2.0 won’t handle those transfers reliably and that the storage ambiguities of flash storage require a enhanced larger buffer on board.
I’m currently using a couple of MK-680mkII recorders (2z6 channels) and they are working reliably without dropouts. I mention them because I really like the fact they record to SD cards. These seem better than even a USB connection as they live more or less internal to the units which I think is more robust than having something stick out from the front panel in the rough and tumble world of live performances. If speed was an issue you could add one or more additional slots for SD cards and record 8 or 12 tracks to a card.
I really like your 1U format and the idea of wireless pad control is brilliant. Oh, could I get built in wifi with that?
Almost ready to buy,
wolftraks.com7th August 2015 at 22:41 #26343FOHParticipant
seems that you are combining questions with your christmas wishlist? B)
But let me elaborate a bit on the USB protocol.
Yes, by design SD cards may have a slight advantage over USB indeed. Though USB2.0 is perfectly capable of handling the data volumes as required for our audio purposes. If I am not mistaken, USB2 can handle way more than 64 channels of uncompressed audio without a hitch. So the protocol is not the problem or bottleneck in any way for this application.
USB3 is the latest gadget from the IT industry that makes some sense in some situations, but definitely not all.
Keep in mind that whatever USB version we are talking about, that only is the means of transport (data highway).
In my experience, the storage device is of much more critical importance.
I wrote about that in some earlier post already. The problem that we (guys in the market) are faced with is that we simply do NOT get honest specifications out of the manufacturers of storage devices.
All specs that you typically see are ‘best case’ and ‘peak performance’ data, which may help you to store your word document 0.002 seconds faster then before ( :huh: ), but says NOTHING about the capability of the drive to handle a CONTINUES stream of data for HOURS in a row. (like with a live recording….)
I personally have worked with more than a dozen different drives, and IMHO the good old fashioned hard-disks seem to remain the best choice for recording applications. I grant you, that having a bulky 2.5 inch disk dangling around your uTrack is not the most optimal solution, as well as the sensitivity of HDD’s to shocks and vibrations.
But though I recently have worked with a few SSD’s that seem to work fine, I also have tried at least 5 or 6 in the earlier days that gave all kinds of weird trouble for audio recording. This again, because an SSD is build for very fast ‘peak’ data transfers (i.e. your word or pdf file…), and has not been designed to continuously write data for hours in a row like we would do for recording.
And then the finally, we see a constant stream of new devices and a continuing decrease in pricing per Gb.
This in turn also means that the manufacturers take whatever parts they can get away with today to provide you the cheapest drives.
This inherently also means that manufacturers are not shy of selling you 2 drives under the same name and type, that could contain completely different parts on the inside…. (Being the reason why virtually no manufacturer of audio gear wants to specify an approved list of drives anymore…)
I am sorry to keep rambling on, but as long as our favorite manufacturers of USB storage devices do not give us honest specifications, the most honest answer remains to verify your drives thoroughly BEFORE your gig.
And that brings back the memories of good ol’ tape which we used to stripe and test before recording….
Preparation & verification remain key for successful recordings!
In fact, not that much has changed after all…. 🙂10th August 2015 at 23:39 #26351AlanParticipant
Thanks for your thoughtful response. Do you provide or recommend a striping test suite to test the 100% reliability of a specific drive?
Alan11th August 2015 at 21:21 #26352FOHParticipant
For playback you should be fine with any sort flash drive, stick or hdd. From what I can tell, recent drives have more then enough bandwidth to deal with our audio playback requirements. So in my experience, once you succeeded to copy your content, you run a thorough test drive (which includes low frequency vibrations, and other shocks that might occur in live situation…. Especially for hdd that have safety features and park their heads for protection from shocks!) and you should be more then fine.
For recording I always fresh format on the device and simply let it record once thru the entire disk.
Never failed me so far on at least a dozen different drives of all sorts and makes16th November 2016 at 08:11 #27554LavenderParticipant
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