Last weekend, I installed ProTools with the little 2-track Mbox. It is Mike's old rig, and we used it up untill a month ago or so when we were practicing with the band. But Mike has bought a 16 track Mbox in order to be able to split out the drums on more tracks. All good, and the new rig is sweet. But more important - me having a similar (but smaller) rig means that since we're recording our practice session, I can bring it all home on a USB-key, and work with it here at home, which is absolutely brilliant. It's like practicing in a recording studio, and then continuing in a smaller studio at home. I can now replace my guitar tracks and edit the music as I see fit here at home, when it suits me. How fab is that?
- I guess it's because of technology like this becoming more "publicly available and affordable" that more and more professional recording studios are having a hard time - after all, we're using the same tools the studios are.
It was no easy task installing software and hardware.Oh no. The Mbox is an external soundcard, connected through USB og firewire I believe - and it IS a little more advanced than the Line6 Guitar Port which I'm also running (on another computer), but oh my god the ProTools is being picky about PC-systems...
First I tried to install it on my little MSI Wind laptop - no luck. I got what appeared to be some kind of buffer error, and there was no way to adjust my way out of it within ProTools. So I tried instaling it on my work machine here at home - which is an old, but powerfull machine which should be more than capable of running ProTools. But I had the same problems on this machine as on the laptop. So I started reading forums and stuff, and found that many other users were experiencing the same problems. And the solution was a rather lenghty optimization guide for Windows XP, created by the good ProTools developers. The guide included some pretty standard stuff like uninstalling useless applications and software, defragmenting the harddrive(s) and harmless stuff like that. But also tampering with firewall, antivirus, various system services and disabling network etc. But worst of all - tampering with the BIOS. Not really an option for me, when I also have to use the computer for work and games and of course ze interwebs...
- luckily I have an older machine, and I ended up installing the rig on this machine, and go through parts of the optimization guide, and luckily I got it working without having to tamper with tje BIOS and other vital system stuff.
- but I DO think it is a little harsh having to go through such a process. But then again - it IS a piece of professional equipment and software, and you'd usually buy dedicated systems for something like this.
But I got it working, and that all that matters :)