Wanting New Gear... Help me choose please.

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Wanting New Gear... Help me choose please.

Post by nickfever » Mon May 12, 2008 11:34 pm

I currently haveG4 dual 867 with 1.25 gigs of RAM OS 10.3.9 with about 6 gigs left on my hard drive.Digital Performer v4.6MOTU 828 originalPowercore FirewireReason 3.0 and the sonic Refill gold collection.Korg Triton Classic (which I mainly use as a MIDI controller)I do VERY little recording, and since getting Reason I am more interested in VIs (as opposed to hardware like my Triton.)I must stay under $5,000 total and would prefer the $4,500 mark. I am trying to be forward thinking in my approach.I’m thinking I need to grade especially since many of my critiques tell me my sounds are “to synthy,” and I would like to do more classical/classical instrumentation type pieces. Also I want to incorporate “real sounds/instruments” into my Hip Hop Instrumentals which comprise 6 out of 7 of my forwards since joining Taxi Feb 3rd of this year.I think I will need a new Mac since I can already max out my CPU in Reason fairly easily.So, I am thinking to get a new Mac pro dual 2.8 gig with 2 gig of RAM with 3 hard drives (maybe only 2), one fore OS, one for Samples, and the third to record to. $3,000 to $3,200.I will need to Upgrade DP + $200 total spent $3,200 to $3,400.This would leave me with another $1,100 to $1,800 for software.As for software I have been racking my brain reading through the forum threads. I went through about 16 pages in “Technology, Recording and Production.”Kontakt 3I am strongly considering, however I am aware of issues with DP, but I am not sure if they have been resolved. I know it has generous 33 gig library, which includes some VSL, which have a more ”dry” sound, but are not sufficient to do much extensive orchestral pieces. This would be very good, however as a mix with another library/libraries.Which brings me toEWQLI am considering the gold bundle (has release trails), or composers bundle. I can get the crossgrade version of Kontakt if I go this route. I am not sure what to think considering “PLAY” is on the verge of coming out for gold. I don’t really want to pay for upgrades. Would the extra few hundred be worth the other 6 libraries, or better invested in yet another library? I also like East Wests EULA, which Mazz pointed out.Kirk HunterI also like what I’ve heard from Kirk Hunter. Nick Batzdorf pointed me here - just an FYI. I’ve heard more talk of the ruby edition than diamond, but I am not sure why.MOTU SymphonicYet another consideration. Nick Batzdorf told me this is a, “good sketchpad orchestra, and it has convolution reverb built in.”Would there be a good (and inexpensive) way to still utilize my G4? Mazz, I know you have some experince in this realm (with adding a slave PC). I do own a PC with 2.4 Gig processor, but it is noisy and I use it for many things. If it would still be beneficial to slave to a Mac, let me know.OK, my brain is almost broken, and I am very tired. I hope I have been thorough in providing you all with enough info . I would like to hear what everyone thinks, even if it is something than the products/ideas that I’ve mentioned.Thank you, especially if you’ve read this far!

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Re: Wanting New Gear... Help me choose please.

Post by mazz » Tue May 13, 2008 1:10 pm

I think the new Mac pro would take care of pretty much everything. I'd consider springing for another 2G of RAM at least (don't buy it from Apple unless you like paying more than you need to for things!).I think Gold and Kirk Hunter make a great combination and I'd add Stylus RMX because it's just so damn great and flexible. Hunter only runs on Kontakt (maybe others but that's what I use so I didn't check) and Gold won't run on an Intel Mac unless it's inside Kontakt so you'll have to upgrade to that if you get a new machine. I haven't used K3 with DP (I have it on my new slave PC only at this time). There's a Motu-Mac forum on Yahoo that is really good and you'd probably get some good info just searching around there. K3 does have a good convolution reverb. The thing is a lot of the Kirk Hunter instruments load up with a convolution inserted which will eat up your CPU quickly if you load 30 or 40 instruments. But it's pretty easy to set up a reverb on an aux channel and send to it in Kontakt so that's a no-brainer. BTW: DP 6 is supposed to have a convolution in it but I don't know when it's coming out.I think you have good enough hardware with the 828 and Powercore to do live recordings and you can get a pretty darn good 200 or 300 dollar mic these days (even less, really).That's all for now! Good luck,Mazz
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Re: Wanting New Gear... Help me choose please.

Post by nickfever » Tue May 13, 2008 2:50 pm

Once again, Thank you Mazz. I'm not familiar with stylus at all, but I am watching a video right now. And I did read thru the EULA. Any recommendations on places to shop for RAM?I am thinking I will go with gold and the crossgrade to kontakt 3 for now. Getting Kirk Hunter will put me out of my budget, especially if I get 2 more gigs of RAMIf I get Gold, am I missing out by not getting the composers bundle.BTW - I really like stylus so far, and am factoring that into my budget also.I downloased a PDF on DP6... no release date though Is the 3 hard drive idea a good way to go?gold + Ilok + kontakt + stylus = $1,300 new mac $3,200 D P Upgrade $200 ----------- That puts me at $4,700 not including another 2 gigs of RAMOk, that's it from me now

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Re: Wanting New Gear... Help me choose please.

Post by mazz » Tue May 13, 2008 3:18 pm

There's tons of places that sell RAM, just make sure you get the exact right flavor, it seems to change with every new computer model and I don't stay up on it. Most of those places will have a way to get the right thing, a configurator application, etc.I like the 3 hard drive idea, it really makes things more efficient and organized. You can get hard drives much cheaper than from Apple as well, FYI.The composer's bundle is pretty cool. The choirs used to cost that much alone when they first came out. That would add a bunch to your budget, though.Stylus is a must have, IMO.Good luck!Mazz
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Re: Wanting New Gear... Help me choose please.

Post by milfus » Tue May 13, 2008 8:43 pm

well hey, before you go blowing your wad of cash, I would take a minute, get like 2 good books on midi programming, and see if those don't help more than hardware would, might save yourself a few thousand bucks
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Re: Wanting New Gear... Help me choose please.

Post by nickfever » Wed May 14, 2008 7:47 am

Milfus,Any books to recommend on midi?Do you think with the gear I have now it would be possible to create forward-worthy orchestral/"real" instrument pieces?

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Re: Wanting New Gear... Help me choose please.

Post by mazz » Wed May 14, 2008 9:22 am

There's always more to learn vis a vis MIDI programming, particularly where orchestral music comes in. The reality is, though, that running orchestral libraries, at least with the technology available today, requires CPU horsepower and lots of RAM and hard drive space. The key to getting things done quickly and efficiently, in my experience, is to have lots of articulations already loaded up in templates and that takes CPU and RAM resources. I have a 3+ year old G5 dual 2.7 supplemented with 2 slave PCs. An 8 core MacPro is probably close to equal in horsepower to my setup, given equal amounts of RAM. With OSX 10.5 being 64 bit, the RAM limitations are pretty much non-existent, I've heard, with cash being the only limiting factor (isn't it always?!) Here's a couple of good books on the subject:http://www.amazon.com/Acoustic-MIDI-Orc ... hest....07 96354&sr=8-2Good luck!Mazz
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Re: Wanting New Gear... Help me choose please.

Post by matto » Wed May 14, 2008 1:08 pm

May 14, 2008, 10:47am, nickfever wrote:Do you think with the gear I have now it would be possible to create forward-worthy orchestral/"real" instrument pieces?These days, probably not unless you have awesome chops...Milfus is bringing up a good point though...buying better sounds is not necessarily going to make your instrumentals forward worthy, although it will certainly help.I usually advise people against buying a whole bunch of instruments at one time, cause it can be overwhelming and a drain on your creativity to learn a bunch of instruments and go thru a ton of sounds all at once.I'd probably get the new comp, new DP and maybe Kontakt 3, then spend a month or two working on that setup...until you've got a good idea about where your "holes" are sound library wise.Then plug those up one by one.matto

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Re: Wanting New Gear... Help me choose please.

Post by nickfever » Wed May 14, 2008 2:46 pm

Mazz, I actually found the link to the first book in another thread from you and ordered it earlier today.Also I got a quote from sweetwater on everything, that would put me $34 over budget, including DP upgrade and extra 3rd RAM from another site. I could find some coins to roll up. Mac dual 2.8 with two extra 500 gig hard drives installed (no extra RAM)Stylus RMX bundle EWQL BundleKontakt 3IlokNow that I'm looking at my quote, he may have left out a hard drive. Are hard drives easy to install in the New Mac pros? I put one in my G4.If his price quote isn't as good a deal as I once thought, I may have to do what Matto said, or switch to Geico. He's right about library/program overload too.FYI - I emailed MOTU. Here is there reply.Hi Nick,Thank you for writing.When DP6 becomes available, upgrading from any version of Digital Performer will be $195 USD plus shipping.Registered users who have upgraded to DP5 on or after January 1, 2008 will also be eligible for a complimentary upgrade to DP6 when it is released.Nick

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Re: Wanting New Gear... Help me choose please.

Post by nickfever » Wed May 14, 2008 3:02 pm

Also, If I buy Kontakt seperately from the EAST WEST it will cost an extra, $150 just throwing that in there.

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