So which DAW should I switch to?

So which DAW should I switch to?


Yeah, I’m still using FireWire as well, it kind of made looking for a new computer a pain in the ass, but FireWire is awesome. Another thing to keep in mind is that apparently FireWire and thunderbolt are compatable with an adapter, for the focusrite saffires anyway. So if computers all start having thunderbolt in the next few years we should still be able to use FireWire interfaces.


I still use my Firepod just as additional inputs.


Some of the big production networks have switched to Cat5 interfaces. Most of mine use Coax. I still have my old MOTUs though…they’re firewire.


I don’t know what the latency is on the network interfaces, they got to be good, they cost enough.

I heard something about getting 1-2ms latency with Thunderbolt.

That takes a proper setup with the right motherboard I believe.

For Sonar Users:


I think I’m gonna try out a studio one demo today.


I routinely get 4ms with my Creative 1616m interface (PCI card + breakout box) using Mixcraft. Hope nothing fries on my interface, it’s no longer supported and there are few options for replacing it-- I really like having the breakout box right beside my midi keyboard, so much easier than having to mess with plugging things in to the card directly. Seems nobody makes this kind of form factor anymore (for small number of in/outs anyway)…


What’s a Cat5? Never come across that one.


My E-mu 1616m connects between the card and the breakout box via a Cat5 cable as well. It’s dedicated, high-speed, low-latency. Here’s a pic:


The port furthest to the left on the card is the Cat5, it’s what ethernet cables are typically made from also. For this unit, you must use the supplied cable, can’t just slap any old Cat5 in there, because of its proprietary wiring config.


Thanks. And does that make for improved low latency?


Well, as I said above, I have no trouble getting to 4ms – honestly I haven’t tried to get it any lower because I can’t even hear 4ms of latency. There’s certainly no hit on system resources by running at that value; resource meter almost never breaks 20%. That said, I can’t have a full project playing with all plugs active at that low a value, there would be plenty of popping and dropouts. But I only ever need it that low for tracking, and I can disable the bells and whistles for that, then put it back to a high value and re-enable the plugs for editing/mixing.

This is the only real interface I’ve used, so I have no direct basis for comparison with other types. I did have an entry level USB interface right at first, but abandoned it for the 1616m after just a few months.


I think of this as a cat5 interface

The 1616m uses networking between it’s firewire card and the breakout box, least I think it does.

I’m happy with 4ms on my setup also but I can see the appeal of cutting that in half.

Someday maybe.


Probably a “crossover cable”.


Yup. Anything Dante uses cat 5. Anything Madi uses Co-Ax. So Yamaha, Allen Heath, and Focusrite are Dante based. Behringer goes Cat 5, but it doesn’t use Dante.

The higher end stuff (Avid, SSL, and Studer) all use Madi. This does NOT mean MADI is better. Just happens to be what they’re using.


I don’t think so, the manual is emphatic about using only the cable supplied and not a standard Cat5 cable; it also says don’t use the supplied cable on a computer or network or for anything but connecting the breakout box to the card. This strongly suggests to me that there is a specific pinout in that cable that is not standard to ethernet protocols, whether in normal or crossover config. One more thing I hope never fails on me-- no idea where I’d be able to get a replacement cable if needed!


One of their product descriptions describes it this way:

EDI (E-MU Digital Interface) proprietary 64 channel audio link over CAT-5 cable

I also found this:

The recommended maximum cable length is 10 meters, and it is recommended to use the included cable. Standard ethernet cables are unshielded and should not be used because they can subject your EMU soundcard to RF emissions.

It sounds to me like it’s just a high quality shielded CAT5 cable. Of course they want you to think it’s some special cable that only they can provide (and they convinced a NASA scientist) so they can charge big bucks if you need a new one. #DevilsAdvocate :wink:


I have no doubt that, for an extremely large fee, the makers of the box would supply one (if you paid the postage etc).


Check out Reaper’s Cyber Monday deal!


The work flow is great. YOu can master but I don’t know how. Good luck



Ha, a DAW with a sense of humor. Priceless!


Pro Tools is worth when You work with real instruments, tools like beat detective speed up drum editing. People complain about MIDI, but it got better over the years.