Sync to External DAW vis TDIF

Discussion in 'TASCAM DM-3200 & DM-4800' started by Peter Batah, Nov 24, 2019.

  1. skier

    skier Well-Known Member

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    Tascam DM4800, PT 12
    Well now, you're getting more complicated if you want to connect 2 PCs and the ReD32. If I was doing this and wanted to connect all this, and possibly more, I'd get a MIDI hub. Take a look:

    https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1447522-REG/esi_esi_m8uex_m8u_ex_16_port_usb.html

    This one has 8 ports and costs almost $300. But you can get them for under $100 depending on how many ports you want. These are most often used by keyboardists who may have several keyboards (synths, piano, organ, etc., and several sound modules. Some keyboardists will actually have all this at every gig which can be a real setup chore. Just do a search for "MIDI hubs" to learn more and see many options.

    HOWEVER, my suggestion to you would be to first try getting your ReD32 working with one PC to your ReD32 through the DM as we've been discussing. Once you've had some problems, resolved them, and learned more about using MIDI, it'll make more sense to tackle a bigger setup. Otherwise, you chance getting frustrated and going nowhere because you're trying to learn on a complex setup and you still want to first get a good handle on the basics. In fact, I suggest you do some research and reading on the following topics before starting:

    1. MIDI
    2. MIDI Clock
    3. MTC
    4. MMC

    You're going to need to set Master/Slaves, MIDI channels, assure you've got inputs and outputs correctly connected and configured, and more. Getting that under your belt first should make it a lot easier to resolve problems and get an understanding as you keep adding devices. And believe me, there will initially be problems as you try to do this for the first (or second) time. Conversely, don't let that dissuade you from doing this - it doesn't take an engineering degree to do this stuff and many musicians use MIDI easily without any technical background. Like everything else, you need to learn some basics and charge ahead learning and solving problems as you go. Starting simple to learn the basics and achieve some success will also provide some confidence that you're on the right track and understanding the fundamentals. We all go through this at the beginning. And similarly, all skiers sometimes fall, even Olympians.
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  2. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    @skier. No it is one PC (running Cubase) and the ReD (runs Soundscape Editor v.7.2)
  3. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    @skier

    For some reason I thought that I had posted my setup here. I guess I had not:

    My Tascam DM-4800 digital mixer communicates with my ReD32 via 3 x TDIF
    My Tascam DM-4800 digital mixer communicates with Cubase via Fire Wire interface.

    My ReD32 is connected to an older HP xw8200 PC that still runs Windows XP. I will call this PC-1

    I use Cubase 10.x on a Windows 7 Pro 64 bit PC. Soon to be Windows 10 Pro 64 bit. I will call this PC-2
    I will occasionally use Logic Pro X 10.4.x on a Mac Book Pro. I will call this PC-3

    I can route the inputs of the DM-4800 to both Red32 (PC-1) and Cubase (PC-2) simultaneously if I wish. Same goes for Logic

    Would I be able to record / playback to / from both mediums (seperate PC's) and have them be completely synchronized.
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2019
  4. skier

    skier Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, it was your question and guru's response above that had implied to me that you wanted to add another PC into the mix. As I mentioned previously, I'd start with your original question. I use MIDI both with synths and with guitars and it's a lot of fun as well as very powerful.
  5. skier

    skier Well-Known Member

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    Tascam DM4800, PT 12
    Yes, you can, presuming you configure everything properly. The are only a few mistakes that I keep seeing people make over and over again with MIDI and this most recent question falls into that category. Because you've got to separate PCs, each with its own DAW, it is logical to think that each PC is the Master. But while that's ok when they're separate systems, as soon as you connect them together, only one can be the Master. Or, it can be some other device, such as a sequencer. I prefer to have only one DAW in such a system, unless one or more others "are only along for the ride". By this, I mean that the other DAWs have already recorded tracks and their only purpose is to have their tracks synchronized with the primary DAW. In other words, any new tracks are recorded on the primary DAW and it is the Master. The others are just there to support additional tracks. An even better way, is to use just one DAW and put it on a computer powerful and expanded enough so it can handle all the tracks, even if that gets into the hundreds. Be that as it may, using multiple DAWs is ok, but you have to keep in mind which is the primary and who are the slaves.

    The second mistake that I see often (and sometimes make myself) is to confuse channel numbers. You're limited to 16 channels per instrument and you have to keep them straight in your mind as you configure each instrument. But, you can use more than one instrument, though at some point, you run out of CPU, not so much for the MIDI instruments themselves - they use very little CPU, but for effects if you're applying them in the DAW rather than the effects supplied by the instrument. Or similarly, if the synth or module itself runs out of CPU because of the number of channels you're using and the effects that synth or module must provide.
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2019
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