I'm the "everything that runs on electricity" technical advisor for a local band. We're in the process of wrapping up the first CD, and the recording set up is killing us. Am I missing something here with the Presonus Firestudio? How can we just finish editing the CD without it crashing every hour?
We're recording using Cubase LE 4.0.3, Build 2233. We're running Vista Business SP1 64bit on an HP/Compaq 6710b laptop, with a 1.8 GHz Core 2 Duo and 4GB ram. Our recording interface is a Presonus Firestudio, with the latest firmware (220.127.116.11) and driver (18.104.22.16828). Evidently you can't use just any old firewire interface, so the Firestudio is being run through a SIIG nn-pcm312-s2 firewire card1
. We're recording everything at 96k3
, and buffer sizes really don't change any of our issues.
It's been a little unstable throughout the process, but now it's just unacceptable. Today, Cubase just completely ignores the stop button after our guitarist is done recording in many of the sessions - it just keeps on playing the other tracks, and won't stop until I stop it with the task manager. This, of course, loses the recorded track. Other times, it just locks up. I can provide more specific situations, but it's just so. un. stable. The computer isn't being maxed out (nor was my octo-core, 6GB ram desktop when I tested it out, with similar results), so I'm left thinking that a)Cubase just doesn't work, 2)Presonus makes stuff that doesn't work, or c) I don't know what I'm doing, and recording audio has a whole different type of physics when compared to anything one does with a computer.
I hope it's A or B. Or maybe I'm just missing Vista's secret "enable better firewire performance" switch?
It's possible that I've set this up all wrong, but between this question
and anecdotal advice from others in the industry, I'm pretty convinced that Presonus equipment just has some major issues. Either way, any help would be appreciated.
1The head of the band is doing a lot of the recording on his own, and during our first set of issues, he called up Presonus who told him that we needed a specific Texas Instruments firewire chip, otherwise the Firestudio wouldn't communicate with the PC properly2. Go figure.
2The band leader has been in the industry forever, both in bands and managing mainstream bands, but doesn't know much about the tech, so everything he says I have to take everything he says (or passes along) about computers with a grain of salt.
3He says2 that record labels love 96k, because if they want to do anything with surround sound, they have to have all of that sound quality to be able to split things up into the proper channels. I've never heard of surround sound CDs (or whatever it is they do), but he says it's a big deal. I can accept him knowing what he's talking about there, but only being able to turn 96k into surround sound? I don't get it. It's a muti-track recording environment. How does bitrate have anything to do with channels?