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  #1  
Old 01-08-2010, 07:54 PM
Phil Buckle Phil Buckle is offline
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Join Date: Jan 1970
Location: Melbourne,Victoria,Australia
Posts: 256
Default Vienna Ensemble Pro+ProTools

A positive heads up to anyone contemplating this combo.
If your G5 is no longer capable of your VI or RTAS requirements and you don't feel inclined to have your hard earned money gouged from your bank account by Avid's cross grade to PCIe solution then I suggest you take a look at this combo.

I recently bought a used Mac Pro 3.2 8 Core and also purchased VE Pro.
If you are interested in Orchestral String sounds then you are in luck because VEPro ships with the "Appassionata" collection all for the princely sum of $385US. all up. (the string collection sells separately for $985!.....perhaps we get a stripped down version...I'll have to check)

VEPro is working flawlessly on my slave system. I initially had some drop out problems but have solved them.
I can load up Omnisphere, Trillian, Superior Drums, Addictive Drums, Stylus RMX, BPM, iDrum, 2x Kontakt players and 1 Kore player plus the Vienna Instrument with the strings loaded. I instruct VEP to use all 8 threads (cores) and the Mac Pro sits there and says....."why don't you actually make me do something?" All processors are averaging around 12%.

I make up a midi template in PT and I have all these instruments available in all sessions.
But here's the dumbfounding thing. Most of these multi timbrel instruments are coming into PT on individual audio channels.............and I don't have a sound card in the Mac.

I can't quite figure out how that all works through just 1 ethernet cable but it does.
So I don't need another box of converters clocking off the 192. I don't need anything but an ethernet cable and I've got 32 channels of audio coming into ProTools.
I have already completed 2 songs using this system and it's working incredibly well.
I started out using Logic but quickly hit the 4 gig limit and got tired of the Logic "funkiness" (read random crashes)

Worth checking out VEPro and thanks to Lee Blaske for alerting me to it .
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HD Accel 2, Magma PER64-I
Mac Pro 2x3.2 Quad Core/OSX 10.6.8/VEPro/PT9.03

http://philbuckle.com/
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  #2  
Old 01-08-2010, 08:51 PM
jeremyroberts jeremyroberts is offline
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Default Re: Vienna Ensemble Pro+ProTools

Phil,

Can you talk about latency issues -- what is your buffer setting in PT? What is the buffer or latency of the VE Pro ? Can you play the VIs in VE Pro in real time without perceived delay (comparable to a 64 sample latency in an rtas VI in protools) ?

Have you played with delay comp and how ADC interacts with the slave? The midi is simply coming from PT to the VE Pro driver, yes?

Did you set up a dedicated screen/keyboard/mouse for the slave machine (or did you find a KVM solution?)

Thanks for sharing your results.
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  #3  
Old 01-08-2010, 09:59 PM
Phil Buckle Phil Buckle is offline
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Location: Melbourne,Victoria,Australia
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Default Re: Vienna Ensemble Pro+ProTools

Jeremy I'm not a great keyboard player so my demands are not stringent in that regard.
However I can say that this system feels better midi wise than what I had before.
I mainly program drums and do the odd piano or string part.

If I use PT on a buffer of 512 and the VEP plug on level 2 then this feels great for me. This puts very little strain on the G5.
If I leave the PT buffer on 512 and set the VEPro plug to buffer 1 then I can feel no latency and my computer (the old G5) increases RTAS load by about 5%. No problem there.
Truthfully I've never tried playing a VI with 64 samples setting. I probably couldn't feel the difference (because I'm such a basic player)
Sorry I can't be of much help there but this feels better than just using ProTools to me.

The VEPro plug is reporting a delay of 266 samples. Internally VEPro has it's own delay comp......not really sure how that works.

BUT I can finally record midi and not have it showing before the beat as was the case before. Delay comp is ON in PT.
AND when I print the drums I am getting back what I'm hearing.
Sorry I can't be more accurate. It just works for me so I started writing and recording.

Yes the midi is all from VEPro. Once you install it on both machines all the ports show up in PTools.
When I play piano parts I can't feel any delay but as I said I'm no great player. It's the best midi feel I've had in years though.

I am using Teleport, a free app that allows you to use only one keyboard and mouse for both computers. Very easy to set up and working very well.
But I would not say "flawlessly".
When I move the mouse from screen to screen it works flawlessly. No problem.
The only gotcha is that if I want to go quickly to the top menu on the bottom screen then Teleport somehow grabs the mouse for the other screen It's no big deal but a slight annoyance.
I wish there was a sensitivity control in that regard.

So to be clear I have 2 computers. One screen is connected to each computer.
I am surprised with how well it works. I can also drag and drop from one screen to the other.
However I have to drag midi files from say Stylus or Addictive to the desktop of the PT computer and then drop them into ProTools. I can't drag them directly into ProTools.

The other gotcha is to do with loop players being hosted in VEPro.
Although VEPro does receive midi clock (without you having to send it from PT) it still doesn't trigger loops to START in time............they are in time but they don't start automatically from the downbeat as they do in PT and other DAWS.
Kind of annoying and I have started nagging them about it.
Apart from that it does feel like I'm running one big machine and not 2.

The Vienna Forum is not that active (not like the DUC) so I emailed Tech support and was answered in 2 days. Not great but not so bad.

I wish I could be more technical for you with the delays but as I say it feels really good compared to just PT.
..............and there's no midi interface or cables. I just don't understand how they are doing it.
I mean isn't that fairly astounding............32 channels of audio and delay compensated midi and NO interface.................how the hell!!!
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HD Accel 2, Magma PER64-I
Mac Pro 2x3.2 Quad Core/OSX 10.6.8/VEPro/PT9.03

http://philbuckle.com/
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  #4  
Old 01-10-2010, 03:36 AM
Phil Buckle Phil Buckle is offline
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Default Re: Vienna Ensemble Pro+ProTools

Just to update those interested: Today I am getting the old "midi recording before the beat" routine in PT with delay comp on. Yesterday I reported that this combo wasn't doing that. I was mistaken.
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http://philbuckle.com/
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