Macbook+Apogee Duet+Logic Studio*Need external hard drive/not enough firewire ports

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by Seaonlylove, Feb 28, 2009.

  1. Seaonlylove macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2009
    Location:
    San Francisco/Portland/Seattle
    #1
    Hello All,

    I have a new 2009 white macbook with just one firewire400 port. I want to use Logic Studio 8 with the Apogee Duet firewire interface.

    I want to install the 40/50some GB of extra Logic Studio jampacks, etc., on an external hard drive,, however, I'm reading on forums that I should only buy Firewire hard drives for this(at 7200rpm).

    Problem is that the Duet only has one firewire port also, so no daisychaining can be done.

    I'm wondering if a USB hard drive will be sufficient, or if I should just buy another interface with two firewire ports--SEGWAY--

    (I'd buy either the MOTU ultralite mk3 or the M-Audio Profire 610 or the Focusrite Saffire)) --any thoughts on which would be best for recording vocals(preamps)+best A/D conversion .. ?

    Thank you, Geniuses, for your time with this. :)
     
  2. iPhil macrumors 68040

    iPhil

    #2
    Go to a local electronic store and look for: [​IMG].. That's product that'll you need to 'gain' more fw ports.. :eek:
     
  3. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    toronto
    #3
    find an external drive w/ an extra firewire port and put the apogee on the end.
     
  4. Seaonlylove thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2009
    Location:
    San Francisco/Portland/Seattle
    #4
    Thank you both for your advice, :)

    Both of those ideas seem great.

    I'm worried that perhaps my one firewire 400'bus'(?) can't take both of the units running at one time -- Do you recommend getting a wall-wart firewire hard drive to help with bus power? (In either case, with the belkin firewire hub Or the daisychain--) ??

    And.. it won't hurt the Apogee Duet in any way to have it chained last with a hard drive first(HD also plugged into the wall, if need be?) ...thank you. :eek:
     
  5. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #5
    i've never had a problem running a digi002r and a drive off one firewire buss.
     
  6. Loge macrumors 68020

    Loge

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2004
    Location:
    England
    #6
    I've had no problems at all running the Duet with a bus powered external hard drive off a single FW port, either using the Duet to play audio on the drive or recording audio to the drive.
     
  7. Seaonlylove thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Feb 28, 2009
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    San Francisco/Portland/Seattle
    #7
    Ok, thank you both for your responses.. Loge,, I'm curious if you are running the duet and your firewire hard drive off of your computer's firewire 400 or 800 port? Do you, by chance, have a macbook like me(with just 400) and it works just fine? Thank you.
     
  8. Loge macrumors 68020

    Loge

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2004
    Location:
    England
    #8
    It was the FW800 port on a pre-santa rosa MBP, more recently I have been doing this (but not really extensively) on a unibody MBP, which of course has only the one FW800 port, so no unfortunately I've not tried it on your exact setup.
     
  9. John.B macrumors 601

    John.B

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    Location:
    Holocene Epoch
    #9
    Nothing personal (no, really, I mean that) but I don't think you have a grasp of how much throughput FW is capable of handling. The high-end audio stuff is all FW for a very good reason, its the one technology that's up to the task.

    That's why we love it and why we pay through the nose for the gear and why, when its removed even from the low end Macs, that we all freak about it.

    FWIW, I have a 2.2 GHz blackbook with a Duet and a FW400 hard drive that I can reliably run off the battery for remote two channel recording, if necessary. The reason I don't is that I wouldn't want my blackbook to go to sleep due to a low battery in the middle of a set. But I could -- and have a few times for a vocal + acoustic guitar set in a really remote location where no power was available.

    Also a good idea to keep the other crap that's running to a minimum, not due to FW issues but to minimize CPU issues in general (which manifests itself as pops or artifacts in your recording). That's not the time to be running the folding@home application or a virtual Windows session or anything like that. Also make sure you have at least 2 GB of RAM, 4GB would be preferable. :)

    HTH
     
  10. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #10
    Are you talking about one of those little notebook sized FW400 disk drives or a "full size" 5 1/4 inch drive. You are going to want the later. It is much faster and less expensive too. (RPM tell you nothing about the speed of the drive.) But you can't bus power them. If you get one of these it will almost certainly have to FW ports.
     
  11. Seaonlylove thread starter macrumors newbie

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    San Francisco/Portland/Seattle
    #11
    Thank you everybody,, John B., you were absolutely right,, I had no idea how sturdy firewire 400 is! That's great. :) I just got a note from Apogee support, too --They say I can daisychain the duet to an ac powered firewire hard drive --sweet! ...
    NOW... how do you all feel about the two 1/4 unbalanced outs of the apogee duet? My m-audio ((cheap)) monitors have only balanced TRS ins, and unbalanced RCA in... do you all think I should use a 1/4 TS cable with an RCA connection on the other end? --2 of those, 1 to each a monitor?
    Thank you for your ideas,, very open to your suggestions on how else I could hook up the monitors, too...
    ;)
     
  12. MowingDevil macrumors 68000

    MowingDevil

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    Jul 30, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC & Sydney, NSW
    #12
    FWIW: I contacted Apogee about their unbalanced outs and they state balanced outs on this unit would make no difference whatsoever to the quality of the sound. I did some more research and it really sounds like balanced outs are most important when it comes to long cables like what you'd have in a live PA situation.
     
  13. Papanate macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2011
    Location:
    North Carolina
    #13
    From the Apogee FAQ:

    Q: Is it possible to daisy-chain Duet to an external FireWire hard drive?
    A: Daisy-chaining Duet to an external FireWire hard drive is not supported nor recommended. Daisy-chaining may cause overloading of the FireWire bus resulting in poor audio quality.



    That said I have my Duet FireWire hanging off a WD My Book Elite and have zero issues from throughput. I do recommend a powered hub like the aforementioned Belkin...it will nip any potential problems in the bud.

    ----------

    Yes use the balanced outputs/inputs. The path will be cleaner and quieter.
     
  14. MowingDevil macrumors 68000

    MowingDevil

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    Location:
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    #14
    According to Apogee thats not true at all. There was alot of misinformed hype from consumers on this "unbalanced" issue.

    In regards to the daisy-chain issue, I've also done it for years w/ a Glyph PortaGig and have never had any issues. Works like a charm!
     
  15. Papanate macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2011
    Location:
    North Carolina
    #15
    Who was misinformed about what? Where on the Apogee site does it say there was a lot of 'misinformed' hype? Site one legitimate article that says unbalanced and balanced lines are equal and just 'hype'.

    A balanced line by design will be better and quieter than an unbalanced line. In the case of the Duet - the unbalanced line is still good - but the balanced output - considering he has balanced inputs on his speakers - will serve him better. And if he has a choice he should use the balanced lines.


    Did I say that he couldn't? I said I am and have been daisy chaining off a hard drive for a quite a while now - but that the Apogee FAQ says they don't support it - and it might serve him better to use a hub.
     
  16. MowingDevil macrumors 68000

    MowingDevil

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Vancouver, BC & Sydney, NSW
    #16
    No need to be so defensive. I was simply adding that, like yourself, I daisy chain the Duet and it works fine. No issues here at all. A hub would be fine as well.

    I spoke to Apogee directly about the balanced/unbalanced issue and they said it makes no difference whatsoever. People can believe what they want. Apogee said it would have added to the cost of the unit and made no difference whatsoever. Where it does become an issue is w/ very long cabling such as w/ a live PA. I've read alot of comments online criticizing the Duet for being unbalanced, thus based on what Apogee said, I find it misinformed hype. I tend to believe they know what they're talking about on the issue. You can buy an external breakout box for the Duet I, available in both balanced & unbalanced. Based on my conversations w/ Apogee I'd go for the cheaper of the 2. It isn't on their website, but they told me, which such short cables it makes no difference whatsoever. I did a small amount of research on the matter and it seemed to back up their claims.
     

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