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  #1  
Old 02-27-2007, 03:13 AM
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Default Which Firewire Interface?

I am getting ready to buy a firewire interface for my mac. I want an 8 input interface that i will be running through garage band and logic.

I am looking at the:

Motu 8pre ($549)
Alesis io|26 ($399)
PreSonus Firepod ($499)

does anyone have any experience in these -- or any others with a mac?

thanks!
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Old 02-27-2007, 04:50 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

I own the Presonus Firebox- the Firepod's lil bro. I love it. However, I really wish I would have saved a couple hundred extra for the Firepod as I could really use the extra four inputs now. The cost of the Firepod now is barely over what I paid for my Firebox when it was new. I don't have any experience with Mac, so I can't help ya there- but you have one big Presonus fan here.
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Old 02-27-2007, 04:58 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

I have the Presonus Firepod and an Imac. Its so friggin easy to record, I almost feel dirty doing it! I think Presonus still has a deal that if you buy the Firepod for $499, they give you a 4 channel headphone preamp. I also got a set of matched overhead condensors from the seller. Not to bad for $500!

I'm definitely in full support of this product.

edit - I just made a thread "punkish rock." That was done by putting 6 mics on the drums, then I just plugged the bass and guitar straight into the Firepod to track them instead of mic'ing the cabinets. COOL!
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Old 02-27-2007, 05:18 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

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Originally Posted by parser View Post
I have the Presonus Firepod and an Imac. Its so friggin easy to record, I almost feel dirty doing it! I think Presonus still has a deal that if you buy the Firepod for $499, they give you a 4 channel headphone preamp. I also got a set of matched overhead condensors from the seller. Not to bad for $500!

I'm definitely in full support of this product.

edit - I just made a thread "punkish rock." That was done by putting 6 mics on the drums, then I just plugged the bass and guitar straight into the Firepod to track them instead of mic'ing the cabinets. COOL!
well i will probably buy it at guitar center -- do you know where you get that deal?

i think the firepod is the way to go. gets a good review on musicians friend as well.
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Old 02-27-2007, 06:42 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

It looks like the deal ended already. However, check this out -

http://cgi.ebay.com/PRESONUS-FirePod...QQcmdZViewItem

They are offering a selection of stuff to choose "one of." The HP4 is the headphone preamp, but I see they are offering an Audio Technica AT-2020, which I've used for vocals and guitar cabs. Plus lots of other gear I haven't tried. Might be interesting.
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Old 02-27-2007, 07:08 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

I use the MOTU 896HD http://www.motu.com/products/motuaudio/896/ and I love it. It's very easy to use and sounds great. Also, 8 XLR INs is nice.
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Old 02-27-2007, 07:21 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

anything alesis is going to be very dependent on software... which is a bad thing. All the alesis stuff is pretty picky about what recording programs you use. It will work with a few, and not work with most, unless you have the ideal hardware/software/driver setup.

I'd stay away from pretty much every alesis product made, if I had a choice, excluding one, which is the DMPro drum module...
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Old 02-27-2007, 07:37 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

i am going to guitar center tomorrow to find out what my best deal is on the firepod. I will let you know what i find.
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Old 02-27-2007, 04:00 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

I have the firepod, althoughI record on a PC, not a MAC. I LOVE it. Easy to use and very dependable. I've never had a problem. A good online place to try is:

www.sweetwater.com

They have good prices, excellent service, and free shipping!

In fact, here is the firepod:

http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/Firepod/
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Old 02-28-2007, 12:47 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

Quote:
Originally Posted by parser View Post
I think Presonus still has a deal that if you buy the Firepod for $499, they give you a 4 channel headphone preamp. I also got a set of matched overhead condensors from the seller. Not to bad for $500!
Wow! That is a great deal. I paid almost $400 just for my Firebox about three years ago. Is your headphone amp made by Prosonus as well? I've been wanting to get that one for a while.
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Old 02-28-2007, 12:52 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

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Originally Posted by SLEEPY BRiGHT EYEZ View Post
Wow! That is a great deal. I paid almost $400 just for my Firebox about three years ago. Is your headphone amp made by Prosonus as well? I've been wanting to get that one for a while.
Yup, its the Presonus HP4. Presonus had a factory rebate where they'd send you one if you purchased the Firepod. All the sellers claimed the rebate was there own special offer, but not the case. I searched for sellers offering other free stuff (hence the free JM27 matched pair overheads) and just did the HP4 rebate myself. It took about 3 weeks to come in too!
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Old 02-28-2007, 02:07 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

bought the firepod today -- have not played with it yet, but i will tomorrow (live recording with the band). I got it for $440 + tax at guitar center. Not a bad deal. Im very excited -- thank you all for your help. I will let you know (and maybe hear) the results.
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Old 02-28-2007, 03:12 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

Bravo! I know you won't regret this, so much fun. Now its time to learn Cubase - feel free to ask any questions about software...:)
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Old 02-28-2007, 03:22 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

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Bravo! I know you won't regret this, so much fun. Now its time to learn Cubase - feel free to ask any questions about software...:)
actually i have logic -- and i know i will have tons of questions about that. :)
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Old 02-28-2007, 04:33 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

Congrats! I think that interface will serve you well for a long time.

Now have fun spending tons of money on cool mics and preamps. :)

Really, it's fun. hahAH!
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Old 02-28-2007, 04:50 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

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Originally Posted by SLEEPY BRiGHT EYEZ View Post
Congrats! I think that interface will serve you well for a long time.

Now have fun spending tons of money on cool mics and preamps. :)

Really, it's fun. hahAH!
well, i got all audix mics....

and i scored the deal of a lifetime on XLR cables -- craigslist -- this is the ACTUAL deal:

17 (100 foot) XLR cables
3 (50 foot) XLR cables
2 (20 foot) XLR cables
1 (5 foot) XLR cable

most are new or almost new -- EVERYTHING for $50. Yes $50 -- not $500. Amazing. I have so many cables now -- i am going to look for some XLR ends and make a butt-load of 50 footers.
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Old 02-28-2007, 06:49 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

Crazy beans!


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Old 02-28-2007, 06:03 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

Wow, that's a huge deal on cables! Did you get the Audix F12 and F10's?

Since the FP came with Cubase, I haven't really considered any other software. That's probably pretty foolish of me, maybe I'll check out some others.
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Old 02-28-2007, 06:13 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

Man, that was a great deal on the firepod. You will love it! As far as mics, I have the Audix D series and they are incredible. I have a D6 on the kick, D1 on snare, D2's on rack toms and D4's on floor toms. I got a really good deal from someone on them.. they were slightly used. I highly recommend the D6. I sold my Beta 52 after I bought the D6.... I didn't need it anymore after that!
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Old 02-28-2007, 08:04 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

I have a D6 kick mic
and then I have the F series for everything else:

F10's for snare and toms
F12 for floor tom
F15 overheads.
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Old 03-01-2007, 05:15 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

Seeing how you've probably already done most of the research on this, and how I am in the dark about computer recording, what would be the difference between the Presonus vs. something like a firewire mixer such as the Alesis Multimix with 16 channels? Is it true that Presonus will record 8 tracks simultaneously, while the Alesis can only provide a stereo mix to the computer so that only two tracks can be recorded at a time?
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Old 03-01-2007, 06:55 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

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Seeing how you've probably already done most of the research on this, and how I am in the dark about computer recording, what would be the difference between the Presonus vs. something like a firewire mixer such as the Alesis Multimix with 16 channels? Is it true that Presonus will record 8 tracks simultaneously, while the Alesis can only provide a stereo mix to the computer so that only two tracks can be recorded at a time?
well, what i indeed found out is that a lot of these interfaces are very software and computer dependent -- meaning that they use the processing power of your computer to record. The Firepod is so beloved because it puts the hardware load on itself -- which it handles nicely.

I hooked it up and am playing with it right now. My mac recognized it immediately -- no drivers to install. Garage band now shows 10 channels available -- i recorded a 3 mic set up (2 overheads and a kick) and IT SOUNDS AMAZING for only 3 mics. The quality is incredible and i think a decent demo will be in my future here in my own studio.

i cannot than everyone enough about the suggestion and i could not be happier!!!!!
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Old 03-01-2007, 07:05 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

That's great, I can't wait to hear some noodling around the kit to see what the firepod can do!
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Old 03-01-2007, 11:25 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

I just bought a MIDI Controller keyboard, the FirePod will be my next addition to my home studio. I have an iMac and Logic Express 7. I'm stoked.
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Old 03-01-2007, 11:30 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

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I just bought a MIDI Controller keyboard, the FirePod will be my next addition to my home studio. I have an iMac and Logic Express 7. I'm stoked.
i also have logic express -- it scares me. I can get great results in garage band, but i really want to use the power of logic -- however, it seems so....... hard. Will i get better results with logic? And how hard is it to go from garage band to logic?
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Old 03-01-2007, 12:15 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

Hey, Fat Elvis, how you doin?

Just wanted to let you know that the soundfiles on my site are recorded through a Firepod. I'm very happy with it, as I'm sure you will be to. I'm no firepod expert by any means, and it was pretty easy for me to figure out on my own.
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Old 03-01-2007, 02:16 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

Fat Elvis - Very happy to hear you are happy with your new purchase. I tried Logic many years ago before Apple bought it and made it exclusive for Mac. From what I remember it was a bit daunting, but with the capabilities of the big dogs- Cubase, Protools, and Sonar. I personally use Sonar. I've used Cakewalk software since I was sixteen. I don't think it's available for Mac though.

If you think your Firepod sounds great as is, just wait until you get some dedicated preamps. I promise you, with quality pres the sound will only improve.


----

Re: firewire mixers

The firewire versions can send each track independently to the computer. The USB ones are limited to a stereo mix. However, you really don't need the features of a mixer when you are sending each track independently to the recorder. Usually that's for the mixdown after things have been recorded. If you plan on mixing 'in the box', you really don't need an external mixer at all unless it is a control surface for convenience. If you have outboard gear or want to do your final mix down through a 'real' mixer, the firewire mixers would be my choice for convenience.
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Old 03-01-2007, 07:26 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

Logic just takes a little getting used to. It's really pretty simple once you get used to it, but I will say that GarageBand, for a free programme, is actually pretty impressive. It's not bad at all. Basically the advantages with Logic are to do with the flexibility of the different effects and the easy flexibility of editing. Whilst GarageBand is good on a basic level, the functions of Logic are much more advanced. Take for instance the Reverb effects. With Logic you can (even with the standard modules) design the room space, with GarageBand you can't.

Logic isn't that hard really, it is a little tricky at first I'll admit, but once you learn the basics it's really really self explanatory.

I'm going to get you some screenshots of Logic:
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Old 03-01-2007, 07:33 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

thanks mfb. now if i could just tell what those screen shots do :)

actually i think i am going to poke around the internet for a logic tutorial. I know of a site that has some tutorials from time to time. But i can tell you, just from those screen shots, i need to learn logic -- it looks like i would have FAR more control than with garage band.

one thing concerns me with logic though -- with garage band i have all those software instruments and sounds (i have all 5 jam packs) -- will i be able to use those as well?

Basically what i am asking is -- can logic do everything garage band can do?
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Old 03-01-2007, 08:50 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

The software instruments on GarageBand are directly interfaced into Logic as well, so you will not lose those. Actually some of the GarageBand software instruments aren't at all bad. The majority of the Logic ones are fairly poor-ish sounding synthesisers, but it doesn't take a rocket scientist to be able to work Logic.

In fact, these are some of the instruments that come bundled with Logic. I've highlighted the standard GarageBand ones just to show that you don't lose them:
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Old 03-01-2007, 08:55 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

cool! Thanks, my man...

im gonna play :)
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Old 03-01-2007, 09:00 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

For anyone else reading this thread who wants to buy a firepod and use the included Cubase LE, there is a newer version out there of Cubase that does not record 8 tracks at once (Version 1.07 I believe). Try to get the older version of the software, which I think is 1.06 which does record 8 tracks at once. You can google Cubase and they also have a very useful forum that I have learned a lot from.
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Old 03-01-2007, 09:00 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

Just wait until you see Logic Pro. Holy christ that's a lot of sofware!

I might have a play too... I do it most evenings, sad I know.

Have fun!

EDIT: The new version of Cubase LE doesn't record 8 at once? Christ Blackbeard would be proud!
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Old 03-01-2007, 09:20 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mediocrefunkybeat View Post
Just wait until you see Logic Pro. Holy christ that's a lot of sofware!

I might have a play too... I do it most evenings, sad I know.

Have fun!

EDIT: The new version of Cubase LE doesn't record 8 at once? Christ Blackbeard would be proud!
i may be able to get logic pro -- would you recommend that i learn that instead of logic express? Or is it too much to undertake?
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Old 03-01-2007, 09:28 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

I have logic express, and have been looking at a firepod. i really like that it puts processing drain on itself instead of the computer, but i've heard it has much more background hiss in the preamps than some other usb interfaces. do you notice anything like that?

also, logic is great. i started getting used to it by basically using it like garageband and playing around with all the other stuff until i figured it out. and this site helped A LOT. it's not quite a tutorial, but it's a tour kind of thing of what you can do in all kinds of stuff. there are a bunch of video links on the side of the page, and hopefully this will help.

http://www.apple.com/logicexpress/quicktour/index.html
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Old 03-01-2007, 10:13 PM
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Don't worry about Logic Pro unless you're absolutely 100% in Logic Express. For home use/demo use etc there's just no need to use Logic Pro, plus it's an extra drain on your system. Logic Express is just fine and you can always just get extra plugins and patches if you want any more instruments. Logic Pro is extra $$$ at this stage, for quite a number of things which probably won't get used. Although it would be nice to have things like, say, a decent Multiband Compressor, the ones on Logic are just fine for most use.

Jeremey, I wouldn't worry too much about the pre's on the FirePod being too noisy. I've not heard enough noise in one when I've seen them used to warrant buying another interface. As far as I'm concerned, the FirePod is the way to go, although people must feel free to contradict me if they believe the case to be otherwise.

The FirePod is good also because you can easily daisy-chain them together if you want to. Get four FirePods, put them together and voila! 32 Channels.
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Old 03-02-2007, 01:03 AM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

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Originally Posted by Mediocrefunkybeat View Post
The software instruments on GarageBand are directly interfaced into Logic as well, so you will not lose those. Actually some of the GarageBand software instruments aren't at all bad. The majority of the Logic ones are fairly poor-ish sounding synthesisers, but it doesn't take a rocket scientist to be able to work Logic.

In fact, these are some of the instruments that come bundled with Logic. I've highlighted the standard GarageBand ones just to show that you don't lose them:
hey mfb.... i have been playing with logic express, and one thing i had noticed is that i dont have this long list of available instruments like you do -- i have basically garage band instruments and the jam packs i have installed available, but it appears that i dont have the logic express instruments.

was it on a different CD that i did not install? will i be better off with the garage band and jam pack instruments anyway? should i not worry about it?

also, i just looked -- i already own a copy of logic pro 7 -- should i just stick with logic express for now? It sounds like it might serve me better, but i thought i would ask since i looked in my archives and found it.
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Old 03-02-2007, 01:49 AM
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Which version of Logic are you using? If it's anything lower than 7, then the list of instruments will be significantly shorter. I use Logic 6.4 at college and the list is a lot smaller. Remember to use the right sound module as well, although I'm sure you are. How old is your iMac? I got mine in November, and I'm assuming you got Logic at the same time as you got your Mac. Now I re-read your post, yes, I did actually get a CD of instruments along with Logic. Those are all standard issue.

On a side note, I got a free loops/instrument CD with an old magazine I found, but I have no idea how to actually get the instruments onto Logic. I'm not good with MIDI particularly. The Jam Packs seem pretty good, so for basic MIDI I wouldn't worry about not having a long list, I have a big list, but in all honesty most of those are cheesy synths I'll never use. If you already have the copy of Logic 7 Pro, put it on there. Not going to do any harm and the principles are exactly the same as Logic Express. Express is just the scaled down consumer version without some of the bells and whistles. Careful not to get dragged into all the effects features you'll never use, though.
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Old 11-28-2007, 07:03 PM
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Default Re: Which Firewire Interface?

I just put Logic 8 on my new Macbook, and am shopping for interfaces presently.
Would you folks say the Firepod is still the way to go?
I'm going to be using it for studio and stage.
Looked at the Mackie Onyx for portability, but hoping for some updated input.
thanks
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Old 11-28-2007, 07:07 PM
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I just put Logic 8 on my new Macbook, and am shopping for interfaces presently.
Would you folks say the Firepod is still the way to go?
I'm going to be using it for studio and stage.
Looked at the Mackie Onyx for portability, but hoping for some updated input.
thanks
The firepod is great -- we have only used Garage Band with it. We actually bought 2 firepods and chained them together, but working with both of them together to have everything mic'd at once proved to be difficult for us. Its supposed to work, and I think it eventually did, but it was not easy. At least not for us. But for 8 inputs, the firepod worked great. And with Logic instead of Garage Band, the firepod may be just fine. I would recommend it.
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