max recording time on 2488neo


New Member
Jan 5, 2013
Gear owned
424mkIII 2488neo DP03 GA30
I don't recall seeing this in the manual anywhere (right along with how in the heck do ya do up to the full 8 simultaneous tracks at once?) but what is the maximum possible recording time on an otherwise clean 2488neo with the original hard drive etc.?

How long a recording can be depends on how many tracks you are recording and the bit rate you are recording at. One sixteen bit track takes up 5.3 MB for every minute of recording while a single 24 bit track takes uses 17.3 MB of disk space evey minute. Another thing that figures into the available hard disk space is edits you have performed on the song without clearing out the undo/redo history. Basically look at the size of the partition that you are recording on and do the math based on number of tracks and bit rate.
I never was worth a crap at math. :LOL:

For the gig in question, my intent is to tap off the main board, channel-to-channel.
At this point, that looks like 8 tracks simultaneously which is max for the 2488.
That's a little close to the edge for my tastes and so while I'm grabbing that
stuff live, I may also see how I can utilize some features of both the Peavey
PV20USB board and the 2488neo and possibly do some kind of a sub mix ??????
I'd really like to keep it as live for each vocal and instrument as possible but if
this band decides to pull any surprises on me I need to be ready for that.

Obviously, this will also depend upon the size of the hard drive in the 2488neo.
Mine is totally stock - but I have seen some posting about swapping in larger
drives which so far as I can tell may be limited to 160 GB ????? and would
obviously increase the recording time compared to a 40 or 80 GB drive.

That tapping the main board on a channel-for-channel basis appears as though
it will have to be done with the insert jacks on the PV20USB. The diagram
suggests that they are "cutting jacks" which OPEN when you plug in a 1/4" TRS
plug that needs to be wired as a SEND and RETURN plus ground. That in itself is no big deal, and sending to the 2488's inputs is no big deal. BUT, the 2488
seems to have no way to return them *individually* and that leaves me looking at
a cable that meets the TRS send/return/ground configuration for the PV20USB
BUT needs to have the send and return jumpered *inside* the jack housing so that
the signal doesn't get cut off and have nothing coming back. Then on the 2488
end, it ends up being a tip and sleeve unbalanced 1/4" plug into the 8 inputs.

It's a little bit messy but I'm not on an unlimited budget, so it's time to be
crafty with the tools I have to work with..........

Try a patchbay set on parallel. Place it between the desk and 2488. It will give you the outs you need.

Ive recorded my band live. Got 2 hours at 24 bits using all 8 inputs.

Thanks, Zeekle for some hard numbers !!! The gig is supposed to run about an hour, so it sounds like I will be good time-wise.

Yeah, my previous idea on the Inserts won't work because there ain't nuthin' from each 2488neo channel to *return* with..... forgot about that, something that always rankled me a bit. My old 424mkIII let me output each of its 4 channels independantly which was *mighty* handy. The idea of creating a "tap" cable to the 2488neo input from the PV20 insert connection doesn't work, screws up all the levels and creates a boatload of noise.

However, an alternative was found and I'm now waiting for it to show up. ART S8 mic splitter which is dedicated for this purpose and runs balanced connections - one set direct and the other transformer isolated. Has ground lift and pads to cover for some possible evils. :) Pretty much looks like it was designed for exactly what I'm doing so I should be in pretty decent shape.

I have some experience with live recording on the 2488. Split boxes are definitely the way to go. Insert points on a mixer are tough to deal with and in my experience sometime generate noise. Once I bought a half dozen split boxes with ground lift switches everything worked great and the recordings were awesome. I usually run the 6 mic/split boxes from live miics and I use a small Soundcraft mixer to send a stereo feed to the last 2 channels on the Tascam that is a mix of other sources (generally drums and bass). The Tascam is a good live recorder and at 16 bit you have lots of time. The last project I did had 8 tracks and I brought the tracks into my computer and used Sonor to mix the tracks with some mastering in T-Racks. Very fat pro sound. My 2488 has at least 1000 hours on it and still works great after 6-7 years of use. I'm already saving up for a DP-24 (or maybe a 32).
One thing I suggest is make sure you have a good tight closed set of headphones. It is really hard to hear in a live situation.
Thanks for the comments! Yeah, I was a bit spoiled by my old 424mkIII cassette unit in the sense that all four channels had their own outputs, and that really was killer for flexibility in being able to do just about anything you wanted. I have to wonder if it really would have been SOOOO expensive or taken up SOOOOO much space in the design of the 2488 to have done that? A lot of follks, I'm sure, would probably prefer to do their mixdowns EXternally for a variety of reasons, such as running through effects that aren't in the 2488, etc. That's what I did on the 424 - did external mixes with various little tricks of moving sound around, etc. as well as external effects. Agree on the headphones - I use a set of Sony MDR-series 'phones that are great sounding.

The ART S8 splitter worked beautifully - makes for a lot of cables coming to one box (8 in, 16 out) but this got the job done. Didn't notice any degradation in sound quality, no audible noise added, it just went very nicely. That unit was one of those occasions where the right box falls out of the sky (via a web search) and falls right on your head :) and bounces into your lap. 8-channel box, which for the 2488 is a perfect fit. Two outs for each channel, one direct, one with transformer for isolation. They also offer a three-out version but it looks like you lose the pad switches and maybe the ground lift (can't recall off the top of my head). It was also a few more $$$$ which I was running a bit short on, so I opted for the two-output unit and kept the pads.

OH, in the "rude surprises on the 2488 department" I was aware that the first 4 inputs used the combo TRS/XLR jack while the second 4 are 1/4" TRS only. (is there really a good reason for THAT?) All my cables were XLR so I snagged 4 XLR-to-TRS adapters..........apparently the designers at TASCAM never thought about *that*, because the 4x 1/4" TRS jacks are too close together to allow the adapters to fit side-by-side. It's close, but no cigar. Fortunately, there was a Guitar Center just a few miles from the gig so I had time to run out and grab 4 XLR-to-1/4TRS cables and eliminate the adapters.

I was all set to drop in a 160GB Seagate Barracuda drive before the event and double my space BUT the vendor for the drive called me on the phone and apologized that they screwed up..........they had advertised that they had a NEW one but didn't, all they had were rebuilds. I wasn't going for that so I cancelled the order and hung in there with the stock 80 Gig drive. Kudos, though, to the vendor for being honest and giving me the option. I've had a few just simply ship me some obviously pre-used electronics (not cool when you're paying for *new* !!) and they got it right back in their faces. So hats off to Avanti Data Products for doing an honest deal !!!!

Since there was only one song on one of the two partitions, I was OK. BUT, I'd still like to push out to the 160 Gig drive............they are getting hard to find !!! I'm also looking VERY favorably at this HGR video mod so I can put the display up on a monitor and actually be able to see what I'm doing. The old Mark-One eyeballs ain't what they used to be. :)


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