Re: Sound on Windows or Macintosh


Subject: Re: Sound on Windows or Macintosh
From: Darren Copeland (darcope@interlog.com)
Date: Fri Jun 14 1996 - 20:25:22 EDT


This is going to be quite scattered, but I have more thoughts to share than
time to give... so, pardon the choppy nature..

A local small scale distributor in my area (Mediamagix in Toronto) carried
some interesting HDR products all on windows. The costs were competitive
with most mac systems - at least in my case, since I was buying from the
ground up (ie., computer included). Also, keep in mind that I have no use
for midi in my life, since I work entirely with recorded sound in my
compositions and sound design.

The system I ended up settling on was a product from Germany called "Triple
Magic", which had some nice attributes that clearly out performs its mac
competitor - the combo of Deck/Session and Sound Designer. At this same
price range (in windows) there is a 16 track recording platform from Las
Vagas called SAW Plus. A lesser known item, but very impressive on first
glance (although a notch higher in price range, so hence my surface
impression), was Prisma Music (or Prismatica). Others have reccommended
SADIE but my memory is not 100% over whether its available on windows - I'm
assuming it was.

With windows there seemed to be a bigger range (in quality and quantity) of
products out there in the HDR market than with Mac, which seems very
dominated by Digidesign. So my advice would be to act critically while
keeping your budget and recording needs at the forefront of your plans.

BTW, the status of the plug in slots for the powermacs (in august 95) and
unhappy reports from friends (regarding powermacs 7000 series) persuaded me
away from the mac route.

Regarding the question of system reliability - my system was custom built by
Mediamagix with my needs and interests in mind. So far no system related
problems with crashing. There is a small bug in the program itself that
leads to crashing, but I have learned how to work around it for the time
being until the next version provides a more worthy solution. Still I am
very pleased, but this may have to do more with the approach of building a
system around a specific need, rather than throwing my hat in the all in one
sweepstakes.

>From a different point of view, if you are an experienced multi-tracker -
comfortable with that type of working process - than I would certainly not
rule out the digital 8 track systems. One might do just as well trading
analog heads in for digital ones instead of screwing around with his/her
working habits in the process. Also, at the lower price ranges there is a
better chance of reliable results in the digital-to-analog conversion. I
would have gone this route myself, but I have retired my blind trust in
bouncing. The virtual tracks option in Triple Magic provides a path for
retracing any material that requires bouncing in the interests of limited
memory.

Particular features for Triple Magic are (remember this cost about the same
has buying a mac-based Session/Sound Designer system):

- d/a and a/d conversion handled by your DAT machine.
- no destructive editing, modifications to a sample (amplitude, edits, pan,
dsp) are performed in realtime. This makes editing fast without the big
bucks for massive horsepower!
- basic digital processing features with real time modification (must dump
back to DAT and re-record has new sample due to program bug mentioned above).
- nice real time looping functions for editing samples.

Mediamagix to my understanding are the only North American distributors of
Triple Magic. Contact Alister Sutherland at 416-504-2264.

Those of you from Europe who read cecdiscuss are encouraged to add your own
comments about Triple Magic - since they have a longer history on your side
of the pond!
Darren Copeland
darcope@interlog.com

For more background on my work, contact my web site at:
www.sloth.com/sloth/copeland



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