[LAU] Large live recrodings ?

David Forsyth steampipe at iwr.ru.ac.za
Thu Jun 26 06:09:53 EDT 2008

Date: Mon, 23 Jun 2008 10:50:37 +0200
From: Svend-Erik Kj?r Madsen

 > What would you bee using if you should record a large music file in
 > let's say 14-16 tracks ? Next month my band have a live-gig I want to
 > record, and I am on the brink of letting my old and heavy ADAT tape
 > machines be left back, and only bring my notebook and my multiface amd
 > my mic-preamps for recording.

 > Is it stable and secure to record in Ardour in one go ? I could raise
 > latency since we're not using any kind of live monitoring from the
 > computer.

I've done this using my desktop with a Delta 1010LT, doing 8 tracks 
live.   In the first show it worked fine, though I did have some xruns 
that caused audible glitches (just 2 or 3 and only in some tracks).
during retracking I had a lot of trouble with xruns, but we did get a CD 
out the door...

In the second live recording  the machine ran for nearly an hour before 
exiting ardour due to too much disk activity.  after that it was a bit 
of a struggle to get one song down without ardour stopping.

However, don't dispare, all this has been fixed.  How?  firstly I 
upgraded from FC5 to FC6 which allowed me to change the motherboard 
setting for my SATA disks.  I was getting ~5mb/s transfer, but with the 
motherboard in advnanced mode, I get >50Mb/s.   NO more xruns.  Just the 
other day I started on my 'tape transfer project'  and recorded an 
entire cassette tape without a single xrun or any other issue.  ok, only 
2 tracks in this case, but no problems at all.
In fact I'm tempted to get another tape deck and do 2 tapes at once (-:
(note that I'm still running Ardour 2.1 on FC6 and later versions will 
be better, and in fact I have an FC7 and FC8 DVD right here for the 
purpose of upgding because Ardour 2.1 does crash for odd things, like 
pressing space bar to stop recording).

At this point, I'd be happy to do an 8 track recording.  For important 
live recordings I would not use a laptop, but instead a decent desktop 
with a RAID 0 array of at least 3 SATA2 disks for the audio files, with 
the system on another disk.

don't forget to kill anacron before you start recording, it has the 
habit of starting disk intensive processes when you least need them.

David                       http://iwr.ru.ac.za/~iwdf/
If you receive email saying "Send this to everyone you know",
            PLEASE pretend you don't know me.

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