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Topic: Can USB 2.0 for GS samples cut it?

  1. #1

    Can USB 2.0 for GS samples cut it?

    I am STILL bound and determined to create a 160-voice laptop system that I can trust, but I can\'t afford to \'buy it, try it and throw it away\' if it fails (eBay is NOT an option!)

    So if I buy a laptop at Circus City, and a Layla Laptop at Guitar Showoff, I can have a couple weeks to get it running. But the external HDD is an issue-can\'t find a place that will let me return it if the system tanks.

    So is anybody using USB 2.0 for their sample drvives? Does it really give consistent thruput for GS? I can buy a HDD that has both Firewire AND USB 2.0 ports, but I can\'t find a laptop with both, so I\'m hedging my bets.

    Thanks for the help.


  2. #2

    Re: Can USB 2.0 for GS samples cut it?


    Below is Pete Snell\'s reply from Soundchaser about the LapDAW they offer.

    2Ghz pent4 processor
    Current system quoted with 1024MB in RAM.

    CDRW burn offered at 8X.

    The layla laptop is currently available

    Comes with a second 15-pin connector for second monitor

    We go with an
    external firewire drive system with Seagate 80Gig, so we can use the standard 7200rpm drives
    in a firewire enclosure and still guarantee the 160 Giga polyphony as well
    as the ability to record to the same drive.\"

    In another reply by Pete he told me he had 160 voices in Giga running along with 32 tracks of audio in Sonar 2. What more do you need? : )
    Price tag is the question...as with all laptops

  3. #3

    Re: Can USB 2.0 for GS samples cut it?

    Price tag is the question...as with all laptops
    <font size=\"2\" face=\"Verdana, Arial\">That is the problem. I spent some time with Pete and Mike at Soundchaser a week or so ago. Nice folks, seem to know their stuff, and I would recommend them to anyone with the budget (around $4300 with them installing my GS160.)

    I can get a Layla Laptop for $674.16 at Jacks, and a Micronet 120 GB combination Firewire/USB 2.0 drive for $316 from PowerMax (or a Firewire Fantom 120 GB for $274,) leaving me with over $3K for a laptop with the horsepower and 5400RPM drive. I can go to the deep discounters and get laptops with a 14-day return, and they have several for $2K that SHOULD work.

    I can get an upgraded deskyop \'solution\' for under $1K that will push the limits of Giga, and use my existing Gina card, which works just fine with S/PDIF and 8 analog outs, (or go with the Layla for an ADAT option and get 8 digital ports direct to my mixer...)

    I just can\'t justify the extra $ for the ability to sound better live. But I\'m willing to put the time in to configure a laptop if I can get the whole thing for around $3K. And I can get an amazingly spec\'ed laptop for around $1800-2.4 GHz, 400MB FSB, 512MB, etc. (but all they show are 4500RPM drives-I\'m going to check Monday and see if they can ship with 5400s-if so, it\'s a great buy. There are actually a number of laptops now that have very impressive specs, but with all the problems that Firewire and Giga seem to have, I\'m looking for a USB 2.0 option as well.


  4. #4

    Re: Can USB 2.0 for GS samples cut it?

    Where are you buying the 1.4Ghz laptop for $1800?

    With Pete getting 160 voices using Firewire..seems there may not be too many problems. But then again, maybe he got it a few times.
    The thing I\'m not crazy about getting spec-d machines built by Music computer companies, is they don\'t really put in the time with YOUR machine. They don\'t really put in the time to find out where the short comings of YOUR software and YoUR hardware are going to come about.

    That would require them to actually use the machine for a couple weeks everyday, doing intensive work for hours at a time. This seems a real test. But realistically they don\'t have this kind of time

    Let me know what you settle on. I\'m looking for a laptop solution as well running seq.+giga 160

  5. #5

    Re: Can USB 2.0 for GS samples cut it?

    That\'s exactly what I\'m trying to do. I have located several \"custom\" (i.e., non-major vendor) laptops, all of which have one problem or another. But I just began the search this weekend, so I haven\'t been able to talk to the companies-it\'s mostly getting a 5400RPM drive, something which SHOULD be quite easy to do.

    If one of these sources seems reliable, and will give me a 14-day return offer, I\'ll probably try them. If not, I\'ll start at CC and work my way into more expensive machines.

    I am convinced this is doable. If I succeed, I\'ll post it here (and on the Tascam site, and the Yahoo newsgroup.)

    Wish me luck, I\'m going to need it.


  6. #6

    Re: Can USB 2.0 for GS samples cut it?

    just a thought, if you can find one you like but the only problem is the 4500rpm HD, couldn\'t you install a new HD 5400 rpm (or have Soundchaser or someone who knows how,) into the laptop?

    I don;\'t really know how easy PC laptops are to muck around with, but was really surprised to see in a Magazine how easy Mac laptops are to get into.

    do you happen to know why the 4500rpm isn\'t acceptable for running apps? I suppose it\'s a speed issue, but still 4500rpm is still a lot of revolutions per minute...hard to believe it wouldn\'t be fast enough to just get the apps going. the extra drive would actually be theone to stream your samples...so understandable that would have to be 7200 or faster.

  7. #7

    Re: Can USB 2.0 for GS samples cut it?

    Get yourself a good laptop for 2 g\'s. Sony,Dell,Toshiba or whatever you like. Something fast with 512 RAM and firewire. Go here
    http://www.compgeeks.com/details.asp?invtid=104508 and get the case. And then for a Seagate HD.(maybe you know of a place for cheaper)
    go to www.musicxp.net (assuming you\'ll be using WinXP) and tune your setup. Setup Giga,audio card,midi interface(could be USB). This will bring you a working laptop setup for under 3 g\'s.

  8. #8

    Re: Can USB 2.0 for GS samples cut it?

    The Music XP tips are quite cool. Thanks much.

  9. #9

    Re: Can USB 2.0 for GS samples cut it?

    Just wanted to jump in here...

    I have been using USB 2.0 as my Giga drive for about 4 months now. I love it! Hitting about 175 voices on average. USB 2.0 is very fast and reliable!

    I have C drive for system... D drive for Audio and the USB 2.0 drive for Giga samples...all is well.


  10. #10

    Re: Can USB 2.0 for GS samples cut it?

    Francis, thanks for jumping. I\'m glad you\'ve got 2.0 working. I had a 2-hour conversation with the president of American Computers yesterday, who assured me that USB 2.0 doesn\'t work, because the spec has not been formalized as yet (and he said this even though he has two machines for sale that HE builds that claim to have USB 2.0! (At the end of the conversation, he had managed to \'upgrade\' the system requirements from an $1800 system to a $2300 system... [img]images/icons/rolleyes.gif[/img] )

    It sounds like you\'re using a desktop box (three drives on a laptop seems a bit of a stretch.) I am trying to spec a laptop Gigabox, and it appears there are some Firewire chipset issues, so I am looking for as many options as I can eke out of a laptop config before I commit the bucks.

    What Firewire drive are you using? I assume it\'s external.



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