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Audio problems with new iMacs, Thunderbolt to USB December 7, 2013

Posted by Damon Sink in : Apple, Computers, Studio Setup, Troubleshooting , add a comment

Many folks seem to be having issues with USB audio interfaces and the new iMacs, which only come with Thunderbolt. Hopefully they get this solved before shipping new Mac Pros… The new architecture (no PCIe slots) is going to require Mac users to use something like the Magma chassis. Our engineer at Western Carolina just refreshed all of our studio computers with the last gen of mac pros integrated with new Pro Tools hardware. Personally, I’ve been scouting for good deals on gently used mac pros, and now that Digital Performer is on Windows…there is no barrier to completely switching over—I already use two PCs as sample slaves for composing.

To quote Steve Jobs’ favorite songwriter: “The times they are a changing…”

If anyone is working on hardware upgrades and has any wisdom or warnings, please let us know. This will affect a lot of long time Pro Tools setups in smaller studios for sure.

Help me help you! April 13, 2009

Posted by ConnorSmith in : Computers, General Announcements , 143comments

I’ve been getting a lot of emails lately on computer problems/DAWs crashing/etc.  Please keep them coming, I’m glad to see systems are working the bugs out (plus it helps me document trends and figure out problems with patches/gear).

We’ve been able to solve a high percentage of problems, but often it takes 2-3 emails back and forth before we have all the information available to help.

If you are emailing us (or even posting in the comments) about a problem you are having, please include the following information, as it will make it possible to help you:

(more below the fold) (more…)

Why All DAW Users Should Use a Kensington Expert Mouse February 25, 2009

Posted by ConnorSmith in : Computers, Editing, Reviews , 14comments

This is one serious mouse.  This is the single greatest improvement to work speed and fluidity I’ve seen in my setup. (Perhaps with the exception of a fast computer). (more…)

Use the Official Playstation Bluetooth Headset with GarageBand January 3, 2009

Posted by PJ in : Computers, Digital home recording studios, GarageBand , add a comment

This one is for all my gamers out there that want to maximize the potential of their Official Playstation Bluetooth headset.  Not only can you use the headset with your Playstation 3 console and Bluetooth enabled cell phone (such as the iPhone) but you can also use it with virtually any application on Mac or PC (such as GarageBand) that utilizes a microphone.


Sending Large Files over the Internet March 17, 2008

Posted by ConnorSmith in : Computers, General Announcements, Studio Setup , 2comments

PJ’s post gave me the idea to share my experience with sending large files of the internet (Thank’s PJ!).  If you need to send session files, wavs, other sound files, omf interchange files, etc… over the internet, its unlikely your email provider will let you attach such large files (plus you will clog the receiver’s inbox).  Here are the two ways I like to send files. (more…)

A home studio setup you can take on the road February 12, 2008

Posted by ConnorSmith in : Computers, Project Studio, Studio Setup , 7comments

I just got an email from Aaron S. asking about putting together a home studio that he could also take to do live stereo recordings. This is a very common setup, and for a reasonable price, you can get excellent sound quality. Aaron said he had about $2000 to work with, including the purchase of a computer.


What to look for when buying a computer for audio production January 29, 2008

Posted by ConnorSmith in : Apple, Computers, Project Studio , 8comments


Wow, what a big question. There are so many options. When you install software for editing and manipulating audio onto a computer equipped with audio input/output hardware, you have what is called a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW)

As in my post about building a home studio, you need to ask yourself some questions:

1) Would an upgrade to my current computer be sufficient?

2) What would I like to be able to accomplish with my computer DAW?

3) What is my budget?

4) Do I want to use a Mac or a Windows PC?


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