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  #1  
Old 12-30-2022, 06:08 PM
T-Low T-Low is online now
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Default 32 Channel - Apple Silicon - Pro Tools Rig in 2023 ?

I´m running a TDM system for ages , but i think it’s time for a change / upgrade

( Mac Pro 5.1 , HD3 PCIe -TDM , 3 x Digidesign 96 I/Os, 1 x Omni Interface )

Centerpiece of my Studio is an MCI JH636 console, so i don’t need any digital I/Os, Headphone Outs, Preamps, Talkback etc.
Just straight forward 32 channel Ins and Outs

Any recommendations for a low(est) latency, native, rock solid and affordable Pro Tools tracking rig
on a Silicon Mac + Interfaces ?

Thanks !
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  #2  
Old 12-30-2022, 06:36 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is online now
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Default Re: 32 Channel - Apple Silicon - Pro Tools Rig in 2023 ?

"low(est) latency, native, rock solid and affordable"

Uh some contradictions there. What is your budget?

For me there would be one choice, far ahead of others, but I'm RME biased.

RME M32 Pro AD
RME M32 Pro DA

You can get started with a RME MADIface USB to connect them to the computer all the way up to a set of RME HDSPe MADI FX cards in a Thunderbolt chassis (or in a future Apple Silicon Mac Pro when if finally ships) if you really want the lowest latency (some of the lowest latency out there). And even if you upgrade, hang onto the MADIface USB, its a great debug/troubleshooting tool (what I used mine for).

And (cough) just wonderful German engineering/company.

If you are monitoring via the console how much does latency matter to you? You need to also track through plugins?
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  #3  
Old 12-30-2022, 06:59 PM
Sardi Sardi is offline
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Default 32 Channel - Apple Silicon - Pro Tools Rig in 2023 ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Darryl Ramm View Post
If you are monitoring via the console how much does latency matter to you? You need to also track through plugins?
My thoughts exactly. Sounds like everything will be done via the board and PT used as a tape machine. Latency shouldn’t play a part at all if purely monitoring analog via console.

I too would suggest something like the Digiface. Even the ADAT version would get you your 32 ins assuming you don’t want SR higher than 48k. Then just grab something like a Ferrofish for the I/O via lightpipe.

But yes, the MADI version would also be a good option, albeit more expensive overall.


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  #4  
Old 12-30-2022, 07:18 PM
T-Low T-Low is online now
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Default Re: 32 Channel - Apple Silicon - Pro Tools Rig in 2023 ?

Latency is important to me , because I’m tracking a lot of bands live in the recording room ( 16 - 24+ channels )

Had a HD Native PCIe card for testing a few years ago .. Chaos, unusable

I like to record at 96 kHz / 24 bit
With the Carbon etc. you have to use ADAT for more channels and they seem to be no sample accurate

Okay .. an HDX card + two 16x16 Interfaces + a Mac Pro

Discontinued, expensive and old …


With all the RME interfaces , you have to run a second mixing engine below , right ?

Last edited by T-Low; 12-30-2022 at 07:29 PM.
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  #5  
Old 12-30-2022, 07:30 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is online now
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Default Re: 32 Channel - Apple Silicon - Pro Tools Rig in 2023 ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by T-Low View Post
Latency is important to me , because I’m tracking a lot of bands live in the recording room ( 16 - 24+ channels )
That does not really answer the question, if you have a hardware console why not monitor though that? If it's just the room location, surely you can arrange a patch panel/box in the console room? Is there a plugins/signal flow that requires you software monitor through the DAW? Many pure hardware console studios are going to sit there with the HW I/O buffers cranked up to 1024 samples for stability and because DAW monitoring latency is irrelevant. And many consoles have just beautiful/easy/tactile monitoring control. As Sardi said Pro Tools is just being a tape machine.

Quote:
With all the RME interfaces , you have to run a second mixing engine below , right ?
Huh? No. The interfaces are all CoreAudio and ASIO devices. Like many interfaces they also all come with a low latency/hardware mixer/monitor (Totalmix) that you simply ignore if you have an actual console (but you might use for some tricks/capabilities like host loopback).

Since Sardi mentions Ferrofish, their interfaces do look nice, and are well priced. Their A-32 is 32x32 and looks great, but again I'd go in that via MADI for ease of cabling, more flexible cable lengths etc. and I'd use an RME MADI interface. A single MADI optical loop connection will give you 32x32 at 96 kHz.

All modern interfaces are 24 bit ADC/DAC but why set sessions to 24 bit when you have 32-bit float flexibility available at only slight overhead in storage space?

Last edited by Darryl Ramm; 12-30-2022 at 08:18 PM.
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  #6  
Old 12-30-2022, 08:00 PM
Sardi Sardi is offline
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Default Re: 32 Channel - Apple Silicon - Pro Tools Rig in 2023 ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by T-Low View Post
Latency is important to me , because I’m tracking a lot of bands live in the recording room ( 16 - 24+ channels )
Ok. But your first post…

‘Centerpiece of my Studio is an MCI JH636 console, so i don’t need any digital I/Os, Headphone Outs, Preamps, Talkback etc. Just straight forward 32 channel Ins and Outs’

…implies that everything is being monitored via the console. So how exactly are you monitoring? Are you feeding return outputs from PT back to the board and sending that to headphones? If so, then yes - latency will play a part.

Quote:
I like to record at 96 kHz / 24 bit
With the Carbon etc. you have to use ADAT for more channels and they seem to be no sample accurate
Using ADAT at 96k is going to halve your channel count so that’s worth keeping in mind. That’s why I echoed Darryl’s suggestion of the RME MADIFACE if you wanted to use high sample rates. Ferrofish make MADI I/O boxes as well as ADAT.

Quote:
With all the RME interfaces , you have to run a second mixing engine below , right ?
Not necessarily. You can monitor via PT but it will add latency as opposed to monitoring direct off the RME via TotalMix. But, with a low enough buffer (32/64 samples) you may find monitoring off of PT perfectly acceptable.


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  #7  
Old 12-30-2022, 08:02 PM
Sardi Sardi is offline
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Default Re: 32 Channel - Apple Silicon - Pro Tools Rig in 2023 ?

Darryl beat me to the punch.

But yeah - we’re exactly saying/asking the same thing.


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  #8  
Old 12-30-2022, 08:22 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is online now
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Default Re: 32 Channel - Apple Silicon - Pro Tools Rig in 2023 ?

If you do look at RME, they have one (or more?) demo/test studios in Germany fitted out with M32 Pro series interface boxes and analog consoles. You might want to find out if that's close to you/be able to look at or talk to folks there.
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  #9  
Old 12-30-2022, 09:33 PM
LDS LDS is offline
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Default Re: 32 Channel - Apple Silicon - Pro Tools Rig in 2023 ?

"Off the desk" in a JH-636 probably means the main mix bus, which is post 'multitrack recorder' due to the inline design. It is probably the way i would do it, otherwise you wont be monitoring what is recorded in Pro Tools... just what is appears that the audio inputs of the desk.

It will also depend whether you want to bake your outboard processing into your tracks on the way into Pro Tools, or leave them processing the mix after the returns from Pro Tools.
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  #10  
Old 12-30-2022, 10:45 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is online now
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Default Re: 32 Channel - Apple Silicon - Pro Tools Rig in 2023 ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LDS View Post
"Off the desk" in a JH-636 probably means the main mix bus, which is post 'multitrack recorder' due to the inline design.
Doh, thanks for that, it probably explains it. I'd have to see more, but I hope you could mess with it enough to be able to dedicate some channels/faders to monitoring--duplicating monitored inputs to both a "monitor" and "to tape" channels?
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