Digital Recording - Tape or Disk : LUSENET : 3D Audio's Music Business Forum (SSS Temp) : One Thread

I have a Tascam DA38 and have been noticing an annoying cueing problem. Even though I punch in the locate points, it often starts at different spot. I tweak the locate point to the second and frame that I want but when I use the locate button it doesn't go exactly to that point! I noticed this I think from early on but it's only lately that it really bothers me as I'm editing a live recording. I got the unit about 9 months ago so I don't know if this is something that's covered by warantee.

-- Henry Shapiro (, February 18, 1998


Response to Digital Tape Recording

>>annoying cue problem<<

Having spent many hours working with the DA 88's and 38's, I can tell you that this particular problem never happened to me. Everytime I would program a Loc point, it was frame accurate in it's search to that point. Has this been a problem with your deck from the very beginning? I would think that the unit is still covered under factory warranty if less than a year old. My recommendation would be to find your nearest authorized Tascam service center and have them take a might be a very simple adjustment...but I would definately get it in before too much longer..actually, I would have taken it in once the problem occurred the first time....


-- Donny Thompson (, February 18, 1998.

Response to Digital Tape Recording

I talked to a rep from Tascam who said the DA38 is only accurate to about 5 frames. I'll be going over the manual and checking the settings I have. I'm also getting a remote RC808 this week which he said may help. BTW, I asked him if there were any rumors about an updated DA38/88. He said the marketing guys hint about a 24 bit machine but not after the DVD specs are worked out.

-- Henry Shapiro (, February 19, 1998.

Response to Digital Tape Recording

Have you guys heard that the new ADAT XT20 is out? I read about it, made a few calls, and found that the stores have it. I bought one. It's a 20 bit ADAT that retails less than the XT (paid $2400 for mine.) Fits right in with my 2 XTs, syncs, everything. And you can hear the difference in 20bit! The ADCs and DACs are 20 bit, 128 times oversampling. You have to format the tape to Type 11, or you can record to 16 bits by formating to type 1. You can even dump your 20 bit tracks to a 16 bit machine via optical by dithering down (or no dither at 16 bits) and you'll get improved sound. This is not the M20. It's even better for my

Asked by Eliott James ( from on February 14, 1998.

-- Eliott James (, February 22, 1998.

I use the Fostex D-80's to do most of the recording in my studio. I would like to know if any of you audiophiles associated with this fallout shelter from the AOL SSS use these recorders. I would like to have some input on aftermarket hard drives that are compatible with the Fostex units. They came from the factory with only 850Mb, and I need more room. It's kinda like never have enough!

Asked by Kenny Lipowski ( from on February 22, 1998.

-- Kenny Lipowsk (, February 23, 1998.

I'd like to see some discussion here regarding the new Roland VS-1680. I currently have a Fostex DMT-8VL and am very interested in going to 16 tracks. I was tossing around the Fostex D-160, and the Akai Dr-16 when Roland suddenly blindsided me with the 1680.

I went from being fairly resolved on what I was going to get, back to being completely confused. I might just be inclined to rush out & buy a 1680 today, except this little worry I have over compressed data. Obviously, data compression serves Roland well with substantially increased capacity, but some argue that sound quality is compromised? I'm only familiar with my Fostex, which does not use data compression, so if there's anyone out there who can compare the two for me, I'd love to hear it! (VS-880 owners??)

Also, an education on how the virtual tracks work (ie, are they stored in RAM so that when you cut the power, they're gone?) is in order, what/how are the effects? -- and what's the scoop on the cd burner?

I'm in a small town, so it is pretty much impossible for me to hear one before I buy it. I'm only partly happy with the Fostex -- I don't want to become the same with an even more expensive recorder!



-- Mike Moncilovich (, February 24, 1998.

>except this little worry I have over compressed data. Obviously, data compression serves Roland well with substantially increased capacity, but some argue that sound quality is compromised?<

I have mixed and mastered several things that were cut on VS-880s. All I can say about the compression is that it can be used as a tool as much as anything in the recording chain. That's not to say it is a creative effect. But the artifacts that I have heard (on the first compression setting) were audible but subtle. Certainly the result was far better than the side effects of the NR on any early Fostex or TASCAM machine. And I've made great-sounding records on both of those. My impression was that, at the most minimal settings on vocals within an acoustic track with sparse instrumentation, the compression was acceptable. (Heresy, you might say, and it's hard for me to believe I'm actually typing these words!) Also, there is no underestimating how much you can technically compensate for, when you have talent behind the board and the mic.

One album that I mixed was cut on ADAT and all the vocals were done on VS-880. It (the vocal) sounds fine in the track. If you are interested, I could make a sample cut from that album available on the website. You probably couldn't tell much after the RA filtering, but if there is sufficient interest, I can make it available. Also, would anyone be interested in before/after mastering samples at my website? I'm sure you could tell a difference even over the Web. -Lynn Fuston 3D Audio Inc

-- Lynn Fuston (, February 24, 1998.

Mike Moncilovich writes: >>I went from being fairly resolved on what I was going to get, back to being completely confused. I might just be inclined to rush out & buy a 1680 today, except this little worry I have over compressed data. Obviously, data compression serves Roland well with substantially increased capacity, but some argue that sound quality is compromised?<<

A legitimate concern, but don't worry...if you know what you're doing and record at the slightest level of compression (MT-1, or multitrack one mode on the VS-880, which I use) you'll get twice the recording time and I'll be very surprised if you notice the effect of compression.(Roland will tell you the compression is "time-based" vs. "frequency-based" as the mini disc recorders are...rhetoric to be sure, but I'll say that I think the Roland compression,[again at it's mildest level] is barely, if at all noticeable and definitely superior to the compression used on mini disc recorders), plus it sure is convenient to be able to leave eight or more songs (with virtual tracks) on your hard drive to be called up at any time.

I too, have been impressed with what I've heard so far about the VS-1680, they've corrected most of my pet peeves with the original 8 track units (bigger display, more inputs/outputs, more patchable effects, EZ routing...not to mention they've upgraded the A/D D/A converters to 20 bit). I will say I think the Roland VS-880 is the best "bang for the buck" hard disk 8 track out there at the moment, I bought my VS-880 as I was working music retail part-time for two years before leaving to pursue music and run a project studio full time. During my retail stint, I had the opportunity to check out EMU's Darwin (which has some nice features and works particularly well in conjunction with ADATs) and the Fostex DMT-8vl (a decent unit but storage capacity and the analog mixer are it's weakest points, then's less expensive) the only deck I'm not that familiar with are the Akai units (the latest of which is very reminiscent of the Roland, ironically!).

The story on Roland is that they really had a head start design and research-wise over the other hard-disk companies because of their earlier DM-80 and DM-800 units (deluxe portable, professional industry quality hard disk recorders that pre-dated the VS-880, were MUCH more expensive and served as big-brother models for what eventually became the VS-880). I've found that the sound quality is excellent, the company keeps upgrading its designs (840 and 1680) and software (v.2) in a user-conscious way, the interface is at first a bit intimidating on the VS-880 (less so with the 1680, thanks to the bigger screen and EZ routing), but the recording basics can be grasped fairly quickly and more complex things like effects routing, editing and bouncing give you something to work on and learn as you record more often. I'm pretty happy with the Roland and know a number of fellow musicians who feel the same, only you know how you're planning to put your recorder to use, but in a project studio setting like mine, I'd consider the unit (and the sound quality) a top choice.

A.M. EasyBee Mgt

-- A.M. (, February 25, 1998.

RE: Roland VS-1680

Thanks Lynn & Bee for the opinions on the Roland machine. It's great that you people care so much about your business to dedicate so much of your time to helping others!!!!

Lynn, I'd love to hear some of your before/after stuff --- I'd thought the internet audio technology is not quite up to speed yet, but it sure is worth a shot! Be prepared for lots of "how'd you do that???" :-)

I simply have a home studio, and I'll be the first to admit that I rarely know what I'm doing, but I tend to be a perfectionist, and though I know I'll never get it, I want my next machine to bring me at least a little closer.

Please keep the opinions coming!!!


-- Mike Moncilovich (, February 25, 1998.

I just finished reviewing the Akai DPS-12 for EQ, and it's definitely a bargain: 12 tracks, JAZ drive, no data compression. The only real bogus part is the automation: you can save snapshots, but they can only be recalled while the unit is stopped!!!! Duh! But you can record fader and pan movements in MIDI, and playback via sequencer, so that's acceptable. Sound quality is very good, it's compact, and the operating system is a piece of cake. I'm not saying it's better or worse than the Roland, but it is a cost-effective alternative.

-- Craig Anderton (, March 05, 1998.

<< Also, would anyone be interested in before/after mastering samples at my website? I'm sure you could tell a difference even over the Web. -Lynn Fuston 3D Audio Inc >>


-- G Ollison (, March 13, 1998.

<< I just finished reviewing the Akai DPS-12 for EQ, and it's definitely a bargain: 12 tracks, JAZ drive, no data compression.>>

Craig, I find it interesting that the DPS12 has "turned your head" after many steadfast ADAT & desktop-editing years, at the same time I've been led to get one (got it already) with practically NO prior user feedback available from stores nor cyberspace. (Kinda like a fan being in the same sporting goods store w/ Babe Ruth or Michael Jordan, y'know ?? Like 'destiny', ya know??) :) So far, without having a few hours' quality time to create on it yet, just the DEMOS blow me away! (And this after playing with & salivating over a VS for over a year) I never thought "no data compression" was a big deal since the VS does theirs so well ... I DO Now! Plus, I had an after -purchase revelation I'd never pondered before, a near-front-row topic in most of our techno-thinking in all formats: compatibility. (To wit:) even with JAZ-DITTO-ZIP-DAT-ADAT-HD storage abounding, using direct transferred/imported compressed VS880 data requires ability to decode the compression scheme [yes? no?]. And despite prevalent Jaz drive scares the past year, i'm so far ecstatic about this one and its replace-ability. << Sound quality is very good, it's compact, and the operating system is a piece of cake. >> Amen. Amen. and Amen. It's awesomely flexible and almost touch-screen quick with buttons directionally coordinated with the nice screen.

-- G Ollison (, March 13, 1998.

When is Alesis going to come out with an ADAT that doesn't use tape as the storage medium? It seems that an ADAT machine, identical to the XT, that had a Jaz drive bay in the front, instead of a VHS drive, would clean up. No more syncing problems. No more VHS tapes getting eaten. Make it with a SCSI port in the back and you're set for editing. It seems like a no-brainer. And the stranger thing is that other manufacturers (like EMU) already have this machine out there, with BRC control and lightpipe I/O. Why doesn't Alesis?

-Lynn Fuston

-- Lynn Fuston (, March 13, 1998.

<< .. the DPS12 ... (got it already) ... So far, (I've had) few hours' quality time to create on it yet...>> I HAVE NOW __ AND SURPRISE: ALL'S NOT WELL (YET) IN CAMELOT__ I NEED BIG HELP! [PROBLEM 1:] (you won't believe it) H-I-S-S, like a snake!! From the 6 analog-ins, with NOTHING plugged in. One Musician's Friend tech thinks it's a bad board from the manufacturer, but referred me to someone more familiar with it on tomorrow. [PROBLEM 2:] Low headphone monitoring level. After having to almost scream into the mike (at the input's -4 setting), i must push the phones fader to the max) to hear it moderately.

Craig, i haven't read your review, so any help from you or others is welcome. If someone advises to get a VS-880, i'm listening ... I do like its sound, and i have gotten user-friendly with it in numerous music stores over the past year. I also expected on the DPS a non-existent (1) scrub feature, (2) windows-style waveform highlighting on the display for cutting & pasting (not there), and (3) the waveform display does not scroll with played tracks in jog play mode __ it 'blanks out', and i don't see it again 'til about a second after playing stops. ALL HELP IS MUCH APPRECIATED, OR IT GETS RETURNED IN 2 DAYS.

-- G Ollison (, March 15, 1998.

Sorry to hear about your DPS 12 problems, G. Ollison! The first (i.e. an abundance of hiss) needs further explanation...did you plug a mic in directly or from a preamp? It's possible that you're not providing the unit with enough gain initially though you said you were getting quite a bit of inherent hiss, even with nothing plugged in! Hate to say it, but your particular unit could be a "lemon", although I wouldn't judge the merits or demerits of the DPS 12 just yet until I tried a working replacement. As for headphone monitoring levels, check the impedance level of the headphones you are using...some great pro headphones aren't always the most compatible with the output of certain recorders (and keyboards for that matter!). To make a comparison between the Akai and the Roland, with 50,000+ VS-880's sold, you're getting a recorder that has had proper time to iron out bugs and address quality control issues, the jury is still out on the newer Akai, you could say.

-- A.M. EasyBee Mgt. (, March 17, 1998.

Guys, I would appreciate help w/ gear for starting a record label, please.

I'm starting a Contemporary Christian Music record label on about a $2,000 ($350 a month) Musician's Friend Easy Payments Plan budget due to big family responsibilities, and want to purchase a core digital recording/editing setup that will have (1) top sound-quality, (2) record 8 tracks simultaneously, (3) have great EQ, (4) be reasonably portable, and (5) have or easily plug into top-quality effects. I think I'd like (6) as many outs as ins, for times when artists have an engineer they prefer to mix their efforts, or when I need to do the same, DA88/ADAT copies, etc. The unit will need to be versatile enough to record whisper quiet praise solos as well as loud rocking productions.

My key concerns are (1), (2) and (4), so if I have to max my spending on those, and rely on other studios for effects and great EQ I will. That seems to fit an "Akai DR8 and Mackie-type mixer" combo. I'd love to wait for the VS-1680, but real availability may be after April, and I'm behind schedule already. I ordered an Akai DPS12, but it had low volume and much hiss on the analog ins and fewer basic editing abilities than the VS-880 so MF got it back. It may have been a lemon, but the Akai tech support guy said his had "some" audible hiss also, and that being unacceptable I declined DPS12 Beta testing for making music instead. I need hard disk recording/editing in my setups to get up to speed on a 14 year backlog of inspirations.

Have considered these kinds of setups: * An ADAT-XT (actually, Panasonic MDA-1) plus WaveCenter card and upgrading my 386 PC to a Pentium. * A Creamware T-DAT or such and Pentium MMX, though leery of computer crashes while tracking, hence my standalone workstation leanings. even (not from MuFriend), * A fast used MAC and one of Sweetwater's $900 Session 8 packages.

My first setup will have to get me off to a good start and support at least nine months of maybe no-significant-profits to fund upgrading while distribution, promotion and all are happening.

I recently read that Lynn Fuston at 3D has used the VS-880 in his top-level (to me!) operation, which speaks well of the VS -- ( I would have one now if MuFr had them in stock.) Should I get a VS and the card? For top sound like Amy Grant/Anointed/Bryan Duncan, would you suggest an analog "British" board, a Mackie, a digital mixer, other? What about the new Ditto Max drives w/ 2G to 7G capacity and about 5Meg-a-second transfer rate --- any good for audio?

I PROMISE you I won't blame you for anything that doesn't work with whatever you recommend :) God bless you, and thank you for your perspectives on these and maybe other things I didn't ask.

-- G Ollison (, March 20, 1998.

Question concernig Sony' Super Bit Mapping (SBM):

Is SBM an emphasis-type of code that is similar to what was put on some older CD's? Just wondering what it really is....

....... lets say I want to burn a CD demo from a DAT master recorded with SBM on. Do the digital bits of SBM information on the DAT tape confuse the D/A convertors of the CD burning unit in any way? (Is SBM a bit realted thing?) Would anything be lost in the translation? Thanks for any information!

-- Cam Millar (, March 22, 1998.

Hi All, I'm getting ready to purchase a new computer and am pretty convinced it will be a Mac G3/233 or G3/266 tower. Right now I'm using a Mac Performa 6115CD with Performer 5.5 but I plan on upgrading to Performer 6 and using that with the new 2408. I have 2 ADATs and a VS880. Considering that the 2408 already comes with editing software is there any reason why I should get the latest version of DP, as opposed to Performer 6? Also,I believe the G3 Tower is my best option for the money ($2000-$2800). Any one out there have a different opinion? If so, why?

Rob C./Nashville

-- Rob C. (, March 25, 1998.

I'll be beta testing the 2408 this month. I would say YES, get the latest DP. From what I am told, the editing software will probably enough to wet your whistle. DP SHOULD work perfectly with this unit. Supposedly, I will also by trying the 2408 with Cubase VST, Logic, Studio Vision Pro, and Pro Tools....

I WILL post results as soon as I get it running.

-- Matt Fortier (, March 26, 1998.

I will be adding a few Real Audio clips of "before/after" mastering samples sometime in the next week. I am often asked how much difference mastering makes. These will give you an idea. Also, it has taken a while to get these because the only archive copies we keep are the mastered versions, so I don't have unmastered versions of any of our back catalog of work. So stay tuned.

Lynn Fuston

-- Lynn Fuston (, March 27, 1998.

Hi all, I'm getting a new Mac this week, a G3/266 with 6 gig HD, 128 MEG RAM, 6 MEGVRAM and audio/video ins & outs. I plan on upgrading from Performer 5.5 and Unisyn 1.16 to the latest version of Digital Performer, Unisyn and the new2408. Right now my set-up includes a Mac 6115CD Power PC, 2 ADATs with a J.L. Cooper dataSync2 (for converting the ADATs to MTC), 1 Roland VS-880 and a MOTU Midi Express with numerous sound modules. Here are a few questions I have:

1) Have the MOTU devices and software I plan on upgraging to all been tested with the new Mac G3's?

2) Are there any conflicts?

3) Will I need some sort of new sync device for my modules other than what I have (Midi Express/dataSync2) or will the 2408 tie everything together via the ADAT's?

4) If I partition the G3's 6 gig hard drive can I use Digital Performer 2.3 on it or is an external hard drive still recommended?

5) Are ther any other software/hardware options I will need that I'm not aware of? Thanks for your input.

Regards, Rob C./Nashville

-- Rob C (, April 05, 1998.


Wow--I can't believe no one answered this guy's question!

How about it, poster? Have you found anything yet? I would ask why recording 8 simultaneous tracks is key to you. there is always submixing on the way in (which is what I do when recording my drums on my VS880).

The 1680 will be a while, I predict, unfortunately. It would seem to answer most of your problems, wou;dn't it?

DOug R

-- Doug Robinson (, April 06, 1998.

I've recently noted Roland DM-80s on the market at low prices (eg < 3K). Likely because the manufacturer is phasing out this machine? I have heard of the DM-800 & DM-80, but I don't know these machines well. Could anyone address important differences between these pro machines and the VS series? My own niche is recording hobbyist & live recording of small acoustic ensembles. Right now I'm not shopping, just looking for background info. Thanks.

-- Robert Coberly (, April 20, 1998.

OK, don't shoot me, I'm only a starving recordist looking for maximum bang for the buck, and very few bucks to start with. I just got what has to be the last remaining "new in a box, warranty and all" Fostex RD-8 machine on the planet for about the same price as an XT or one of the better new 20 bit machines. Thing is, this has all the BRC sync stuff already in it and a reputedly tougher transport than the Alesis machines. So far, after a few peliminary tryouts, it records, plays back and follows SMPTE just fine, exactly what I needed it to do. My question is, anybody familiar with this machine, any bugaboos? Any "for God's sake don't do this and such" type things? So far, Fostex is failing to even acknowledge the existence of this machine. I'm not trying to open the Alesis/tascam war again or the HD/Tape one either. The plan, at this point is to incorporate both tape and HD based subsytems into this whole shebang as finances permit. Any word on this brand new "dinosaur"?

-- Tom Armbruster (, April 28, 1998.

Tom, I've had an RD-8 for about 4 years. It works well though I never use all of its features. I bought it to chase time code from an analog deck, which works OK....only thing I found was that if the timecode isn't perfect the RD-8 will drop out of record mode and enter play mode. This drove me to sell my car and but an ADAT.

Good Luck, John Chiara

-- John Chiara (, April 29, 1998.

Guys, During the last few weeks, I have been BETA testing the ALESIS M 20Us (4 machines locked) and the remote called RCADIS. The machines should be available in a week or so. Best to check with ALESIS for the official release but this is what I have been told. As we know, the transport of past machines was the weak link. Well friends, no longer! The two motor transport reads time code in wind mode which allows the slaves to track using time code instead of motor tach pulses. The lock time is outstanding! A auto locate point will wind at 16 times speed, stop, and the 4 machines would go into play within 2 seconds (worst case example). Most of the time, If the locate was fairly close (EX: 30 seconds), the machines would lock in less than a half second. A 3rd of the time, the machines would lock as one! Outstanding! Multiple machine ADAT users got used to using locate points since rewinding, then hitting RplayS before parking the machines, caused up to 10 seconds of park and search before finally going into play. On any slaving tape recorder set up, Rrewind to playS will never be as friendly as a locate point but the M 20 format is very good! I performed this test over and over as to check for the play lock time. The lock up time was in three seconds (worst case) and averaged 2 seconds. A 1/4 of the time, the lock was under a second and an occasional immediate lock up! For years, I slaved up analogue recorders (two 24 tracks). Always put only one song per reel as to speed up wind and park time. After the park, I then hit play. If hitting play in wind mode, the search time was a joke! Friends, four locked M20Us smoke the two 24 track analogue lock time even if hitting play in wind mode! As well as locates and transport controls, a scrub wheel is included. Along with the audio aux track, you can use the scrub wheel as to wind in either direction while monitoring the aux track. This is the same as analogue wind modes meaning you can hear the music as to guide your way around sonic land. If you have analogue recorder experience, this feature will make you very happy! When going into play from this mode, you are locked right now! The CADI is a passive extension remote as employed in the analogue recorder format. The master M20 recorder is in charge and the controls on the CADI are parallel. This speeds things up in tape motion modes compared to older ADAT formats since the BRC is an active unit controlling the master time lock. With the CADI and M20Us, the first machine is in charge which eliminates an external clock compared to a BRC set up. A while back in time, I was asked to offer input regarding the design of the M20. I begged for two features and asked for about 20 others. I got my way for the two majors which are, 1. RHard InputS. The original ADAT and the M20Us employ this very important feature. When in this mode, you are monitoring the track(s) in input meaning no digital converters in the path. No audio delay! If using the converter mode, a 600 microsecond delay is in play. What this means is that if you are recording and the musicians/singer are using headphones, monitoring the headphones through the recorder return path to the console, there will be this delay of around 600 microseconds. If the player or singer can hear themselves acoustically as well as in the headphones, there will be a comb filtering effect. Not comfortable for the performers. So you have the choice regarding which monitoring mode you want to use. When setting levels and EQUing, use the converter mode. When recording, use the hard input mode. When setting levels in converter mode, if a bad converter, you will realize this before recording! 2. The meter bridge with error lights is the only logical way to see errors. I really crack up when the design team tell me that some recording engineers want a utility mode to shut off the error lights. Why would you not want to know if it is time to make a back up now! Unbelievable that some people think the format is bullet proof! No format is and error lights are so very important! When recording, the engineer listens between the stereo monitor speakers. With the remote meter bridge sitting between the monitors, you will see the meter bridge 95% of the time when tape is in motion so if an error or series of errors show up, you will discover in time as to make a back up before hearing digital garbage! The meter bridge has 32 meters (4 machines) with a led display in the middle that has both individual machine amber error lights (interpolation errors) as well as a transport error red lights. The machine has a clean smooth analogue path and the converters sound great as well. The bonus of the HARD INPUT/CONVERTER switching will allow an instant comparison regarding the analogue and converter path. I do not hear a noticeable difference! When BETA testing the old ADAT format, there were serious bugs. In the case of the M20Us, the ALPHA stage did not allow a BETA release until they felt the bugs were fixed. So I have found two that have been fixed. Compared to around 20 bugs I found with the original ADAT, 1 feel that the original release will be very friendly regarding problems. This may be the last of the SVHS recording formats. Hard disk recording is around the corner which will be a nightmare without a working backup system. When a hard disk system crashes, the recording is toast! Every hard disk system will offer back up possibilities using other hardware, but if the back up system is a storage medium only, if the data was corrupt when loading, or if the data is corrupt when returning, bad news! The point is that after the M20Us are out of date and hard disk recorders are in, the M20Us will be a great tool for backup! If the hard disk system crashes, the M 20US may be the best storage medium (even if an analogue transfer) since it can allow the user to continue recording! Way busy writing recording technique books with Craig as well as recording with the M 20 format so no time to answer questions at this point. If you guys have questions, contact ALESIS. Later, Jay

-- (, May 01, 1998.

I've been eying Steinberg's Magneto plug-in in hopes of giving my hard disk recordings a little warmer sound. Does anyone have any experience with this product? does it really live up to it's claims? I love the speed and ease of hard disk recording and editing, but I sometime miss the sound of tape. Comments?

-- Lance Gibbon (, May 05, 1998.

Guys, regarding the ALESIS M20, I forgot to mention one feature that will be loved by all. Software updates will be available on the ALESIS WEB page as a MIDI file download! Load the MIDI file into a sequencer an transfer into the M20 via MIDI. FREELOADER should also work as the MIDI send if no sequencer. You may need STUFFIT as to open up the compression. Not sure about STUFFIT as to be used with the release version so ask ALESIS.

Most important to mention that the MIDI jacks on the back of the M20's do not offer a "through" jack. No problem. If using multiple M20's when loading software updates, patch the sequencer (or MIDI player) into MIDI input on M20 #1. Patch the MIDI output of the recorder into the MIDI input of the next M 20 and so on.

Most important to do one thing as to be safe. Before downloading the new software, save the old software in two places. Hard drive and outside storage. I have not had a problem in BETA land regarding loading software but my experience tells me to make sure I have a redundant back up. When you load the software, you blow out the old so make a back up before the load!

Later, Jay

-- Jay Graydon (, May 05, 1998.

Yo Guys, What is the going price for a used blackface ADAT, BRC and remote meter bridge? Time to sell 8 machines, 2 meter bridges and a BRC. Thanks, Jay

-- (, May 15, 1998.

ADAT blackface prices depend on the hours. The ADAT exchange sells blackface ADATs with about 600 hours, v. 4.02 software, optical cable and LRC, cleaned and ready to go for $1050. I have seen them with higher hours and older software for between $850-$1000. I think the meter bridges are going for around $550, but I haven't watched them that closely. And the BRCs I am not sure but maybe around $650? It all depends on where you live and the condition of the gear. Gook luck!

P.S. I am looking for an ADAT, email me with the details on yours and you might be able to unload one of them if the price is right.

-- Lance Gibbon (, May 15, 1998.

Of course I meant "Good Luck" in my previous message. Should of paid more attention in those typing classes.

-- Lance Gibbon (, May 15, 1998.


it's this kind of subtle racist slur that...oh, it was a typo. Never mind.

-- Doug Robinson (, May 16, 1998.

The Exchange prices on ADATs reflects a middleman premium. Blackfaces with 4.03 software and 500 or less hours typically sell for around $1K - $1.1K. The prices drop commensurate with additional hours. Machines with 1500 or more hours can be found for as little as $650.

-- geoff dodson (, May 20, 1998.

It's true that places like the ADAT exchange charge a premium. But it may be worth it to get the warranty and assurance it has been checked out and cleaned. If any work needs to be done on a unit you might buy from private party it could quickly add up to way more than the $50-150 extra you'd pay at the ADAT Exchange or other reputable music stores.

You're right, however, that the prices can get very low depending on hours. A couple months ago I saw an ADAT with 1800 hours & v.3.0 software for $625. Although, recently I've been looking for good deal on a used ADAT and they to be very hard to come by. When they're worth less than a grand, most people are opting to just hang on to them.

-- Lance Gibbon (, May 21, 1998.

I plan on keeping my most reliable ADAT and getting a Paqrat.


-- John Chiara (, May 22, 1998.

Yo Guys, I thank you for the kind respose regarding the current prices for used ADATS, meter bridges and the BRC. I am going to sell the gear as a package which is 8 ADATS, 2 meter brigdes and a BRC. One ADAT has less 200 hours and all others have 100 hours or less. I have a few offers but if they donUt pan out, I will re-post in case anybody wants the gear. Later, Jay

-- (, May 25, 1998.

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