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  • My road map to VST - Feedback requested

    I really enjoyed reading the informative posts in the "Dedicated PC with AD finding latency" thread (http://vdrums.com/forum/showthread.p...inding-latency).

    In particular, I was very impressed with the breadth of knowledge/experience from Kai (User ID Ribot), especially in the area of providing suggestions on how to minimize latency without spending a fortune.

    This brings me to the reason for this post. Kai made some suggestions in post #11 (http://vdrums.com/forum/showthread.p...076#post571076), and I would have loved it if one of his suggestions is what I was planning to do. However, my planned setup is a bit different so I would love it if the collective brain trust here could review my plans.

    Current Setup
    I currently have a Roland TD-9KX2 that is made up of the following components:
    • TD-9 (version 2) (vExpressions Acustics pack)
    • PD-125BK (Snare)
    • PD-85BK (Tom 1)
    • PD-85BK (Tom 2)
    • PD-105BK (Tom 3)
    • CY-13R (Ride)
    • CY-12C (Crash)
    • KD-9 (Kick)

    I primarily use my headphones, but I also have a Simmons DA50 monitor.

    The Plan
    I am a tinkerer at heart and I am very interested in replacing the TD-9 module and going the VST route.

    This setup will only be used at home as a practice kit and will not be used for live gigs.

    Since money is a limited resource for me, I want to implement my plan in two stages...

    Stage 1
    Here is a diagram that outlines what I want to accomplish in stage 1:



    Items to purchase in this phase:
    • Superior Drums
    • Audiobox 22VSL

    The computer is a Dell Dimension 8300 Pentium 4 with 2GB RAM running XP SP3 that I had lying around the house. I loaded the BFD2 demo and it is working much better than I expected.

    I am planning to use a powered USB hub in order to circumvent any potential problems that I have read about; it might be unnecessary, but I can always remove the hub and connect the Audiobox 22VSL directly to the computer.

    I realize that the Audiobox 22VSL might be considered "over-kill" but I believe that it will be a great "sound-card" that will enable me to convert the TD-9's MIDI out to USB so that Superior Drums can perform its magic. In addition, it is my belief that it will do a great job driving my headphones and monitor.

    Stage 2
    After building up my savings I would like to replace the TD-9 module and replace it with a 32 port MegaDrum module as shown in the following diagram:



    Items to purchase in this phase:
    • MegaDrum module, 32 port

    It is my belief that latency will be reduced by replacing the TD-9 with the MegaDrum.

    As you can see, the Audiobox 22VSL is no longer used to convert the MIDI out from the TD-9; in this stage it is only used as a "sound-card" and to drive my headphones and monitor.

    Any feedback is greatly appreciated.

    Cor
    Last edited by cruiten; 04-11-12, 03:36 PM.

  • #2
    I do not have experience with the presonus and your laptop!

    Why the USB hub?


    Do not make it too hard.....first check if the presonus 22 vsl works with your laptop, i.e. you can play with 64 buffer size.....often this will not work because the usb chip implementaion on the computer side is suboptimal (you cannot change this, i.e. you have to built, get a computer around the soundcard!)I. Is the drive fast enough to deliver the samples?, you often need a second drive or and something faster than 5400 type drives in laptops.

    User Rockdude has experience with Megadrum.....I (using the VH11) never tried it....has the megadrum USB to send MIDI???? In German Forums the Megadrum has a mediocre performance, rep. but ask Rockdude here.....

    My recommendation, buy/lend a RME Babyface (for laptop mac or pc) or a RME AIO (mac or pc with pci slots) and compare them with the Presonus on your system....or another/second systems of a friend....check if the latency is good enough for you and the performance is flawless, only that matters! Can you play with other sources like Itunes, you tube without probs.....Check the TD10 TD12 if the VH11 is good your playing/performance....if so....you have to wait to implement other solutions, as far as I know the VH11 does not work with other solutions like drum trigger/megadrum, you can only add additional pads.

    Save time! Time is money!

    If comparing/evaluating/getting the best performance for bfd2, use platinum samples rock legend kit, there you can feel the best playing experience....big improvement/difference.

    Kai
    Last edited by Ribot; 04-13-12, 02:12 AM.
    New system: I5 Asus, Asus P8Z77, W7, 64 Bit, G-Skill 16 Gig Ram, 2 Samsung SSD, Lian Li rack enclosure, Enermaxx power supply.
    Old system (the same! latency with RME AIO), TD12, Drum Tec pads, BFD2, RME AIO, Asus P5B using XP, UAD Quad, Platinum Samples: Jim Scott, Baressi, Andy Johns, Taiko, Gretsch Kit, 8bit Kit, Percussion, XLF, Modern Drummer Snares, Deluxe, Yamaha Oak, Absolute, BFD Snares, Battery, Reaper, Cubase, Kontakt 5, Amplitube, Redwirez

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Ribot View Post
      I do not have experience with the presonus and your laptop!

      Why the USB hub?


      Do not make it too hard.....first check if the presonus 22 vsl works with your laptop, i.e. you can play with 64 buffer size.....often this will not work because the usb chip implementaion on the computer side is suboptimal (you cannot change this, i.e. you have to built, get a computer around the soundcard!)I. Is the drive fast enough to deliver the samples?, you often need a second drive or and something faster than 5400 type drives in laptops.

      User Rockdude has experience with Megadrum.....I (using the VH11) never tried it....has the megadrum USB to send MIDI???? In German Forums the Megadrum has a mediocre performance, rep. but ask Rockdude here.....

      My recommendation, buy/lend a RME Babyface (for laptop mac or pc) or a RME AIO (mac or pc with pci slots) and compare them with the Presonus on your system....or another/second systems of a friend....check if the latency is good enough for you and the performance is flawless, only that matters!

      Save time! Time is money!

      If comparing/evaluating/getting the best performance for bfd2, use platinum samples rock legend kit, there you can feel the best playing experience....big improvement/difference.

      Kai
      I can second Kai's quote. I have both the Babyface and AIO. Both excellent interfaces.

      The AIO can have a bit of noise introduced as it is PCI Express. It didnt bother me that much though.
      Roland TD-20 (Expanded TDW20) stock standard kit setup + KD7, HPD 15, Alesis Trigger I/O, X2 Mandala pads, DrumKat 3.7, MacBook Pro 2011 i7, 8GB Ram, x2 SSD. RME Babyface

      Battery 3, Sonic Coutures Hang drum, ToneHammer Tabla Vol 2 "Multi", BFD2 - Sleishman expansion pack.

      Ableton Live

      Student of Thomas Lang's drum academy at http://www.artistworksdrumacademy.com/

      My band [urlwww.onshiftingsands.com/[/url]

      Comment


      • #4
        double post
        Last edited by Ribot; 04-13-12, 04:36 AM.
        New system: I5 Asus, Asus P8Z77, W7, 64 Bit, G-Skill 16 Gig Ram, 2 Samsung SSD, Lian Li rack enclosure, Enermaxx power supply.
        Old system (the same! latency with RME AIO), TD12, Drum Tec pads, BFD2, RME AIO, Asus P5B using XP, UAD Quad, Platinum Samples: Jim Scott, Baressi, Andy Johns, Taiko, Gretsch Kit, 8bit Kit, Percussion, XLF, Modern Drummer Snares, Deluxe, Yamaha Oak, Absolute, BFD Snares, Battery, Reaper, Cubase, Kontakt 5, Amplitube, Redwirez

        Comment


        • #5
          double post
          New system: I5 Asus, Asus P8Z77, W7, 64 Bit, G-Skill 16 Gig Ram, 2 Samsung SSD, Lian Li rack enclosure, Enermaxx power supply.
          Old system (the same! latency with RME AIO), TD12, Drum Tec pads, BFD2, RME AIO, Asus P5B using XP, UAD Quad, Platinum Samples: Jim Scott, Baressi, Andy Johns, Taiko, Gretsch Kit, 8bit Kit, Percussion, XLF, Modern Drummer Snares, Deluxe, Yamaha Oak, Absolute, BFD Snares, Battery, Reaper, Cubase, Kontakt 5, Amplitube, Redwirez

          Comment


          • #6
            "It is my belief that latency will be reduced by replacing the TD-9 with the MegaDrum."

            Maybe, but as mentioned a lot of times you can already get around 6ms latency with RME Cards and every Roland Module together which results in 2 meter distance ear drum head (using headphones), this is almost the same as reality.....why making it less (it should be even possible with headphones omitting the module getting closer than in reality using software drum trigger solutions and RME Cards).

            This is not the bottleneck anymore, another more important bottleneck is the hihat, snare performance (I prefer the TD12), to use these you have to use the TD10 or Td12....

            Making all samples to behave at least like BFD2 with the rock legend is another bottleneck.....they do not perform as good mostly!!!

            The future, improving even the VH11 i.e. using the Zildjian Gen Hihats (great playing feel only a little acoustically louder) and give them (a lot of trigger zones .....imho it is absolutely pointless micing them and treating them with dsps, perhaps interesting for tech nerds,...........sounds horrible right now like most even very expensive newer american cymbals from big renowned american manufacturers, they are destroying their great heritage in cymbal making, stupid, like they did with their guitars and amps in the 80-90ties....

            Kai
            Last edited by Ribot; 04-13-12, 05:30 AM.
            New system: I5 Asus, Asus P8Z77, W7, 64 Bit, G-Skill 16 Gig Ram, 2 Samsung SSD, Lian Li rack enclosure, Enermaxx power supply.
            Old system (the same! latency with RME AIO), TD12, Drum Tec pads, BFD2, RME AIO, Asus P5B using XP, UAD Quad, Platinum Samples: Jim Scott, Baressi, Andy Johns, Taiko, Gretsch Kit, 8bit Kit, Percussion, XLF, Modern Drummer Snares, Deluxe, Yamaha Oak, Absolute, BFD Snares, Battery, Reaper, Cubase, Kontakt 5, Amplitube, Redwirez

            Comment


            • #7
              For those interested in latest technology and latency perhaps interesting....thunderbolt blah the holy grail blah

              http://www.rme-audio.de/forum/viewtopic.php?id=13556

              The new apollo interface (incredible interface if you want to use the UAD plugins like delays and compressors in real time) ((I cannot with my UAD Quad )) from uad has not faster latency than RME USB ones.

              Kai
              Last edited by Ribot; 04-13-12, 05:48 AM.
              New system: I5 Asus, Asus P8Z77, W7, 64 Bit, G-Skill 16 Gig Ram, 2 Samsung SSD, Lian Li rack enclosure, Enermaxx power supply.
              Old system (the same! latency with RME AIO), TD12, Drum Tec pads, BFD2, RME AIO, Asus P5B using XP, UAD Quad, Platinum Samples: Jim Scott, Baressi, Andy Johns, Taiko, Gretsch Kit, 8bit Kit, Percussion, XLF, Modern Drummer Snares, Deluxe, Yamaha Oak, Absolute, BFD Snares, Battery, Reaper, Cubase, Kontakt 5, Amplitube, Redwirez

              Comment


              • #8
                I would go with a PCI card instead of USB as mentioned above. There are cheaper alternatives than RME. I have an M-audio Audophile 192, which works fine. I would love to have a RME but I cant justify the cost because I only use my ekit for practice. If you are going to stay with BFD2, I would get a dedicated sata drive for your samples.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by csnow View Post
                  I would go with a PCI card instead of USB as mentioned above. There are cheaper alternatives than RME. I have an M-audio Audophile 192, which works fine. I would love to have a RME but I cant justify the cost because I only use my ekit for practice. If you are going to stay with BFD2, I would get a dedicated sata drive for your samples.
                  For every latency hunter
                  Yes, as mentioned, try it yourself, compare, listen to these module with their onboard sounds through headphones.
                  Try these Modules
                  Fastest module: old, antique DDrum3: 2,4ms (should be less latency than in reality using headphones)
                  Roland module: 4,2 ms
                  2box should be around 4 ms

                  Try the AIO (+2ms latency) and M-Audio (about probably +4ms latency) with the added module, buy what fits your needs!

                  Kai
                  New system: I5 Asus, Asus P8Z77, W7, 64 Bit, G-Skill 16 Gig Ram, 2 Samsung SSD, Lian Li rack enclosure, Enermaxx power supply.
                  Old system (the same! latency with RME AIO), TD12, Drum Tec pads, BFD2, RME AIO, Asus P5B using XP, UAD Quad, Platinum Samples: Jim Scott, Baressi, Andy Johns, Taiko, Gretsch Kit, 8bit Kit, Percussion, XLF, Modern Drummer Snares, Deluxe, Yamaha Oak, Absolute, BFD Snares, Battery, Reaper, Cubase, Kontakt 5, Amplitube, Redwirez

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Can you hear the latency? I am not sue what the Yamaha DTX 900 does latency wise across USB but I would assume it is about on par with Roland. I cant detect anything when I am playing. What range can the human ear detect?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Ribot View Post
                      I do not have experience with the presonus and your laptop!

                      Why the USB hub?


                      Do not make it too hard.....first check if the presonus 22 vsl works with your laptop, i.e. you can play with 64 buffer size.....often this will not work because the usb chip implementaion on the computer side is suboptimal (you cannot change this, i.e. you have to built, get a computer around the soundcard!)I. Is the drive fast enough to deliver the samples?, you often need a second drive or and something faster than 5400 type drives in laptops.

                      User Rockdude has experience with Megadrum.....I (using the VH11) never tried it....has the megadrum USB to send MIDI???? In German Forums the Megadrum has a mediocre performance, rep. but ask Rockdude here.....

                      My recommendation, buy/lend a RME Babyface (for laptop mac or pc) or a RME AIO (mac or pc with pci slots) and compare them with the Presonus on your system....or another/second systems of a friend....check if the latency is good enough for you and the performance is flawless, only that matters! Can you play with other sources like Itunes, you tube without probs.....Check the TD10 TD12 if the VH11 is good your playing/performance....if so....you have to wait to implement other solutions, as far as I know the VH11 does not work with other solutions like drum trigger/megadrum, you can only add additional pads.

                      Save time! Time is money!

                      If comparing/evaluating/getting the best performance for bfd2, use platinum samples rock legend kit, there you can feel the best playing experience....big improvement/difference.

                      Kai
                      Kai: Thanks for the feedback. The computer that I am using (Dell Dimension 8300) is not a laptop, it is a desktop computer. I was going to use the powered USB hub as insurance against problems that I have had with other computers/USB devices; however, tight now the Presonus 22VSL is working like a charm with my computer using Superior Drums 2.3 without the powered USB hub so I am not planning to use the hub.

                      By the way, right now the buffer size is 128, but in my quick early morning tests I did not observe any noticeable latency. I did notice distortion, pops, and clicks when I set the buffer size to 64 or lower.

                      Also, I have verified with Dmitri from MegaDrum that the MegaDrum module sends MIDI over USB. In addition, user Russ15 also informed me that he simply connected his MegaDrum to his computer using a USB cable.

                      From everything that I have read so far, the VH-11 works with the MegaDrum module and this combination has worked fine for a while. Anders (user angr77) has a detailed thread on his setup, which also uses a VH-11 with MegaDrum, here: http://vdrums.com/forum/showthread.p...land-Triggers!


                      Originally posted by csnow View Post
                      Can you hear the latency? I am not sue what the Yamaha DTX 900 does latency wise across USB but I would assume it is about on par with Roland. I cant detect anything when I am playing. What range can the human ear detect?
                      csnow:I have just set things up, but as of right now I am not able to observe any noticeable latency with my "Stage 1" configuration.

                      Incidentally, I imagine that the latency range detectable by the human ear differs drastically from person to person; at this point in time I am only interested in making sure that my ears are not bothered by excessive latency...

                      When I have some time I will try to measure what my latency is right now. Ultimately I am not a "minimal-latency hound"; I am just interested in replacing my TD-9 with a solution that sounds good to me.

                      Thanks for the feedback guys!

                      Cor
                      Last edited by cruiten; 04-13-12, 04:00 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        By the way, right now the buffer size is 128, but in my quick early morning tests I did not observe any noticeable latency. I did notice distortion, pops, and clicks when I set the buffer size to 64 or lower.
                        Seems that that the mainboard with it´s usb chipset is the culprit, 64 buffer should be possible, but as mentioned in the ct magazin review of this presonus, one PC system delivered very good values, one PC system slow values, they did not mentioned their tested mainboard. But your system is older than 8 years isn´t it? I would buy a used PCI RME 9632 for around 270 USD for your setup. Most performance for the buck! But the presonus can certainly perform better than you experienced. But it is up to you if you really need this improvement.
                        The other only way keeping and improving the presonus is probably changing the mainboard.....unfortunatly mostly necessary, you can try newer usb chipset drivers, flashing the mainboard with a new version (danger, can destroy the mainboard)....in my experience less chances.....

                        My advice:
                        If something works it works
                        , do not trust tuners or people delivering a better driver in the future ....I waited 3 years for them with my Terratec EWS64 (it never worked) and 2 years with the good sounding but lame high latency TC Electronics 24D...they never arrived, tried three different mainboards and 4 different firewire driver, Apple Quad....****ty driver....

                        Even Apple with mostly better USB implementation (because the demand tighter hardware specs) have trouble with certain laptop modells using the UAD Apollo....

                        But the presonus can certainly perform better than you experienced. But it is up to you if you really need this improvement.


                        Also, I have verified with Dmitri from MegaDrum that the MegaDrum module sends MIDI over USB. In addition, user Russ15 also informed me that he simply connected his MegaDrum to his computer using a USB cable.
                        Thanks, good to know, Ok, how fast is the driver Mega Drums uses?
                        I, nevertheless, will wait a bit till software triggers will interpret the VH11......

                        From everything that I have read so far, the VH-11 works with the MegaDrum module and this combination has worked fine for a while. Anders (user angr77) has a detailed thread on his setup, which also uses a VH-11 with MegaDrum, here:
                        Cool did not know this!

                        Incidentally, I imagine that the latency range detectable by the human ear differs drastically from person to person; at this point in time I am only interested in making sure that my ears are not bothered by excessive latency...
                        Almost everyone will detect above 14-16ms, playing with a 128 buffer (and module) size is around this distance/. value. I cannot stand it using percussive spounds with little room, it is not tight above 8ms. In reality playing real acoustric drums you have, depending on your arm and stick length, around 2ms.

                        When I have some time I will try to measure what my latency is right now. Ultimately I am not a "minimal-latency hound"; I am just interested in replacing my TD-9 with a solution that sounds good to me.
                        Cool, will also do, when my system is delivered....Duo Core xp and W7 64Bit vs W7 64 bit I5....

                        @CSNOW

                        I thought you have connected your yamaha flagship directly (they are almost no other modules out that can do this, i.e. sending midi through usb) with the computer (without soundcard), that should be possible, It should then have the same or less latency as my TD12 + RME AIO setup.....try it, I did not;
                        I only played the interesting yamaha silicon pads shortly using the module sounds (a little better than roland, I would never use them though) in a shop.....

                        Kai
                        Last edited by Ribot; 04-14-12, 04:47 AM.
                        New system: I5 Asus, Asus P8Z77, W7, 64 Bit, G-Skill 16 Gig Ram, 2 Samsung SSD, Lian Li rack enclosure, Enermaxx power supply.
                        Old system (the same! latency with RME AIO), TD12, Drum Tec pads, BFD2, RME AIO, Asus P5B using XP, UAD Quad, Platinum Samples: Jim Scott, Baressi, Andy Johns, Taiko, Gretsch Kit, 8bit Kit, Percussion, XLF, Modern Drummer Snares, Deluxe, Yamaha Oak, Absolute, BFD Snares, Battery, Reaper, Cubase, Kontakt 5, Amplitube, Redwirez

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Yes, I do have the module connected to the computer via USB. I still figured the sound card might have some latency added with internal processing. Before I had the module connected via midi to the sound card because I didnt have a long enough USB cable, and I wasn't able to detect any difference when I switched to USB. Based on what you just said, the latency from the sound card is added from the midi processing? I thought it was the circuitry on the board processing the sounds that caused the latency. So do I need to AISO drivers when using the USB directly? I guess I dont know what the AISO driver is really doing.
                          Last edited by csnow; 04-14-12, 09:20 AM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by csnow View Post
                            I guess I dont know what the AISO driver is really doing.
                            "ASIO bypasses the normal audio path from a user application (...) so that an application connects directly to the sound card hardware. (...)

                            It means a reduction in latency. (The delay between an application sending audio information and it being reproduced by the sound card, or input signals from the sound card being available to the application).

                            In this way ASIO offers a relatively simple way of accessing multiple audio inputs and outputs independently. Its main strength lies in its method of bypassing the inherently high latency and poor-quality mixing and sample rate conversion of Windows NT 5.x audio mixing kernels"


                            Explained clear enough...? Hehehehe
                            .
                            .
                            Greetings from Switzerland,
                            - Dänoh



                            "My best friends' name is J-SON. They used to call him 'Mr. Parse.' He has an 'Error'..!"

                            http://www.vdrums.com/forum/core/cus...ar33631_4.jpeg

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Yep, that makes sense. So it bypasses the Windows OS and speaks directly to the sound card hardware.

                              Comment

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