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  #1  
Old 03-29-2002, 09:19 AM
electrobank electrobank is offline
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Default Why aren\' t you using TDM?

After browsing thru the "Studio Interiors"
post, I was puzzled by one thing.
There were a couple of "Pro" looking studios only using the Digi001. I know cost is the major reason most of us don't use TDM systems, but I saw some studios that looked like the owners would be able to afford it.
Aside from the cost, do you have any other reasons for not using TDM systems. Your thoughts and enlightenment will be greatly appreciated. As of right now, I am totally sold on TDM systems. I have been saving my pennies and hope to have one by the years end. [img]images/icons/cool.gif[/img]
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  #2  
Old 03-29-2002, 09:31 AM
Pako Pako is offline
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Default Re: Why aren\' t you using TDM?

I personally bought into the marketing psycology of buying the digi001 today, learn the software of the TDM systems to later upgrade when the pocket book would allow it.

When I can afford it, I'll go with a TDM system..., until then I will rock on with my qute little Digi001. [img]images/icons/grin.gif[/img]

Cheers
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  #3  
Old 03-29-2002, 08:50 PM
Phil O'Keefe Phil O'Keefe is offline
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Default Re: Why aren\' t you using TDM?

Excellent question. Allow me to take a round about way of answering it, and forgive me for making the assumption that I'm one of the studios you were referring to. [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img]

I've been using Logic Platinum for years. It's a great program, and I've been very pleased with it. Then why did I get a Digi 001? Because I have too many clients who were requesting it, or at least SOME sort of PT compatability.

In the early 90's, ADAT machines were the "standard", and lots of people had them - home studios, project studios and even professional facilities. Nowdays, IMO, PT has acheieved that same sort of universal use. And since I am in business, and I work on projects that may come from a home studio, or come in from a large facility for overdubbing, or start here and finish up at a large facility, that compatability is very attractive to my clients and me.

True, I could always open the AIF / WAV files in Logic, but I'd be missing all the "project settings" and it's more of a hassle than just opening it in PT and not have to do a ton of fiddling with it.

So why not go with a TDM system? Well, there's several reasons. First of all, I have to be honest - I resisted buying ANY PT system for as long as I possibly could. No offense to Digidesign (we ARE hanging out at "their" place), but I was less than impressed with the way they appeared to treat their customers, and felt that they really weren't making products that fit all of my needs... and while I CAN see the value of a TDM / HD system, I felt that Digidesign was totally ignoring the "middle" of the marketplace.

I would have GLADLY spent $3,000 - $5,000 for a native version of PT with 32 - 48 tracks, RTAS, AS, VST AND DX compatability and 96 KHz compatability, and a Digi 001 style interface that could be expanded to more analog and digital audio I/O with the addition of another Digi 001 style PCI card / break out box. But Digidesign has seen fit to offer only the ultra expensive TDM systems or the entry level Audiomedia III and Digi 001 systems.

I DO see the value to TDM. You can run on a less expensive computer and still acheieve amazing performance. It's easily expandable in terms of both the interfaces and the DSP. It's pretty darn reliable / bulletproof.

But it's VERY expensive. IMO, TOO expensive to justify the price. I won't get into all the native vs TDM arguments here, but I will say that I see merit on both sides of that fence. But I certainly think that, for me at least, Logic Platinum with a Frontier Dakota / Montana card setup and the outboard converters of my choice on a fast PC is a pretty capable system. With the exception of the RTAS / AS plug ins, it's capable of doing nearly everything on the list I described above... and if I'm willing to accept "only" 16 channels of I/O (and used the right converters) I could even get 96 KHz with it. But even with the just Dakota / Montana and some 24 / 48 KHz converters, you've got a 32 discrete I/O system. And the kicker is that the Frontier cards cost about $650, and Logic Platinum is about $500. So you're looking at $1,100 (plus the cost of the converters and the computer, which you'd probably want to get with your TDM system too...). That represents a significant savings when compared to the cost of a TDM system. The price difference could pay for a Logic Control, and you'd still have enough left over for a LOT of plug ins.

So, why get PT at all? Simple compatability, rock solid stability, industry standard software that is a delight to use for audio editing (most engineeers can at least get around on PT, while the same can't always be said about Logic - it's not as universally well "known" as far as operating it) and a high price / performance ratio - at least in terms of software.

If I had ONLY the Digi 001 system, I'd feel somewhat handicapped. PT LE's MIDI features don't measure up to the power of Logic, so I'm still keeping Logic (and Sonar). The track limitation is a drag, but I have outboard recorders for that. The lack of expandable digital I/O is a MAJOR downer, but it's a price that I'm willing to pay for the benefits I outlined above, and JUST giving me expandability in I/O isn't worth the cost of a TDM system IMO - and for the way *I* use it, flying in and out of my hard disk recorders and mixing with automated digital mixing consoles instead of in the software, I don't need a lot of the things that TDM would give me - and the one thing I could really use (more I/O) and the one thing I would like to have (more tracks) are not worth the extra price.

There's a lot of discussion regarding Digidesign's motivations for not giving PTLE more tracks or expanded I/O, with most of them centering on Digidesign's probably not wanting to cut into their own TDM sales with a more powerful "native" version of PT. But I think that's probably misguided on their part. I have no idea what their corporate strategy is, but IMO, I'd be more concerned about Emagic and MOTU cutting into their TDM sales. At least if they offered a product in the "middle market" they could recapture a significant portion that middle market share away from their competitors.

SO I guess the bottom line why I went Digi 001 instead of a TDM system is because it came CLOSEST to meeting the largest amount of my needs and desires, at the best price / performance ratio. TDM would only add a couple of things that I'd really like, and those things don't justify the much larger price tag, especially when I take into account my preferred working methods and the other gear I already had.

Sorry for the novel... I've been up for WAY too long (and got no sleep to speak of last night) and I tend to ramble on and on when I'm overly tired. [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]
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  #4  
Old 03-29-2002, 09:46 PM
DigitalWaveform DigitalWaveform is offline
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Default Re: Why aren\' t you using TDM?

greetings,

i use ProTools Mix Plus with A/V option at work. at home it's nice to have ProTools LE to be able to work on some smaller projects transfered from larger to smaller systems and my own on the side work. at home, i don't need the large system...and if i need the larger system i'll drive the 7 miles to work [img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img]

take care...
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  #5  
Old 03-29-2002, 10:07 PM
N-G-NEER N-G-NEER is offline
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Default Re: Why aren\' t you using TDM?

Phil,
It seems like one day you woke up and found out there was protools. PT has been around since before Adats and has been mainly in larger more productive studios. But I have been using it what seems like for ever. Logic Cakewalk audio Cubase and enuendo palde in comparison. In my opinion it would seem as though you may need to spend more time with a PT TDM sys so you could really appreciate it. Protools is now being used widley on movies replacing millions of dollars of outdated gear perhaps you should look closer. Consider this friendly advice so that the world doesn't pass you by while you sit on a rock
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  #6  
Old 03-29-2002, 10:10 PM
N-G-NEER N-G-NEER is offline
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Default Re: Why aren\' t you using TDM?

Phil,
It seems like one day you woke up and found out there was protools. PT has been around since before Adats and has been mainly in larger more productive studios. But I have been using it for what seems like for ever. Logic, Cakewalk audio, Cubase, and enuendo pale in comparison. In my opinion it would seem as though you may need to spend more time with a PT TDM sys so you could really appreciate it. Protools is now being used widley on movies replacing millions of dollars of outdated gear perhaps you should look closer. Consider this friendly advice so that the world doesn't pass you by while you sit on a rock
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  #7  
Old 03-30-2002, 12:19 AM
keny keny is offline
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Default Re: Why aren\' t you using TDM?

I recently found out that in the end the HD systems are actually cheaper than the old tdm systems! Ha..

I considered buiying the tdm system and may eventually take that dive, but in the meantime I own logic and will logically go there before I go to HD. I can get a track upgrade from a third party and if the business gets better, I'll consider HD. Meantime, you get what you pay for.

I recorded at 16 in today 10 tunes. I could've used at least 20 in. It works for the small band. I feel as if I'm wearing a shirt that's tight around the collar. I need to breathe by having 24 in's. I'll get something in the next year in order to breathe, but I'm not going any further into debt for that. No way.
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  #8  
Old 03-30-2002, 12:56 AM
dcornutt dcornutt is offline
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Default Re: Why aren\' t you using TDM?

Digi in fact has spelled out "exactly" why they did the whole "le" thing...and limited the 001.

I'll let it speak for it'self.

This was pulled from the mac LE archives.
AS ORIGINALLY POSTED BY DIGIDESIGN SENIOR STAFF:

Dear Digidesign Users

We realize that a number of you are unhappy about our decision to exclude certain features from Pro
Tools LE. The main complaint we are hearing concerns removal of the SMPTE time code ruler/editing
options. We truly care when our customers tell us they are upset, so we’d like to explain some of the
reasons behind our decision.

Pro Tools TDM systems are widely used by post production professionals, who require sophisticated
systems and complex integration. Our goal continues to be to provide a solid solution that audio
professionals can rely on. This takes a lot of work - a lot of research, development and testing of the
various features and workflows, which mean considerable on-going investment. This translates to a need
for yearly company growth, to sustain existing systems *and* develop new ones.

On the other hand, the Pro Tools LE software we supply with Audiomedia III and Digi 001 systems is not
focused toward that market. These systems are targeted at home project studios, musicians (who may do
some work to picture), and people with more limited budgets.

Ultimately we have a responsibility to the entire user base to choose the best path for overall business
health. The best way for us to provide cool and powerful audio products is to be a healthy company - one
that will be there for you in the future. Financial success is a part of this equation - it’s required for us to
sustain and grow our company which is important for *all* of our customers. It allows us to support the
investment you’ve made in our gear by adding more valuable features and options to our existing product
line.

Consider some of the substantial improvements that Audiomedia III users get with Pro Tools LE v5.0: 24
tracks of 24-bit audio, full MIDI sequencing, powerful host-based mixing, RTAS plug-in processing, and
some great new editing tools. Of course, along with the features, there’s a lot of “behind the scenes”
activity to make sure that it all works right… testing, tech. support, manufacturing quality testing, etc. We
continue to work hard on that, and try to make sure that’s something that our company stands for.

Pro Tools LE-based systems work just fine for a lot of basic music/sound-to-picture tasks. Pro Tools LE
chases to MIDI timecode (and displays the incoming TC), supports accurate integrated QuickTime movie
playback, and spotting audio to QuickTime movies using the Bar|Beat, Minute/Seconds, or Samples time
scales.

Adding SMPTE timecode display/editing options back into Pro Tools LE creates a business problem for
Digidesign. Prior to the increased track count, higher resolution and host-based mixing provided by Pro
Tools 5.0, use of Audiomedia III for post was not a significant issue. However, we know from careful
analysis that if we do not clearly separate the target markets now, we jeopardize our company growth. This
sounds as if we are simply money grabbing … we’re not. As a company, Digidesign makes average profits.
As part of a *public* company however, we are required to grow revenue and profits annually *in order to
re-invest in new development.* This doesn’t mean that we won’t choose a less profitable approach at
times if it’s better for our existing customers. A good example of this is the fact that Digidesign is the only
company that currently offers hardware upgrades.

We can assure you that decisions like LE’s timecode ruler are not made by a bunch of accountants in
suits. In fact, the overwhelming majority of Digidesign staff is comprised of people that are extremely
passionate about audio and the products we produce (many come directly from the audio production
industry). Some decisions we make are very difficult for us because we know upfront that not everyone will
be happy with them. We definitely don’t take that lightly, and explore all alternatives to ensure better
options are not overlooked. However, the best choice for the company and overall user-base does mean
sometimes that the consequences are unfavorable to a group of users.

We do our best to provide great tools for every user, but the reality is that we can’t always succeed. We
recognize that you have other choices, but hope that you will understand the reason behind our decision
and choose to stay with Digidesign.

Sincerely,

The Digidesign Senior Staff
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  #9  
Old 03-30-2002, 02:10 AM
dcornutt dcornutt is offline
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Default Re: Why aren\' t you using TDM?

Here's my interperative analogy:

Dear Cable Subscriber:

We are sorry that you are not happy with your recent Digital Cable upgrade.

It seems the largest complaint is that we have removed the news and weather channels from your cable viewing area.

But, if you look at the bright side, we gave you a free ..hereto before ..paid movie channel and you get much better picture quality with the digital.

The bottom line is...were a company that has to turn a profit. We needed the extra band width for our higher paying customers that are now using cable modems with the full Digital Cable Package. We realized that this would not make some of you happy...but ...we know that if you had all the things you needed..you woulnd't buy the DigitalPkg upgrade.

Many of us here watch TV too..so we are quite aware of what you like to watch..and what you "need" to watch.

IAdding the news and weather channels on top of your additional upgrades would have presented a problem for us. We coulnd't sell the full Digital pkge..and upgrade the equipment in areas and provide the bandwidth..without differentiating our products in the market and turning a profit.

So, were sorry you got screwed....but hope that you understand and will continue to stay with us.

If you would like your news and weather channels back...you can obtain them by calling us and ordering the full Digital package for 200 bucks a month.

Since your a valued customer...were offering you a free installation (turning a switch)...and 2 dollars off the first 3 months.

_____________

It still makes me cringe after all this time.
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  #10  
Old 03-30-2002, 02:47 AM
Travis Mitchell Travis Mitchell is offline
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Default Re: Why aren\' t you using TDM?

Amen dcornutt...amen!

-Travis
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