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New tech makes it easier to connect audio on Windows, Mac

If you think computers aren’t advancing for audio, you haven’t been paying attention to connectivity. The latest generation of OSes, computer architectures, and audio interfaces can combine to give you lower latency and easier connectivity. They can even connect over long distances and networks. MOTU and RME this month unveiled cross-platform Thunderbolt support that works on Windows – and MOTU have been focused on connectivity in a series of updates.

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mox8

Yamaha’s MOX: Recession-Friendly, More Portable MOTIF Keyboards; Computer Workflows

While Roland this week is pushing their JP-80 and celebrating a 30-year milestone (the Jupiter-8), Yamaha has a different tack. They’re talking about the 10-year anniversary of the MOTIF workstation line, and introducing a version that’s actually easier to lift and afford. That could be friendly to the current economic tough times. But with all that people love their software synths, can Yamaha make a compelling case to the computer user, too? I put Yamaha on the spot to answer that. First, here are the specs: MOTIF XS sounds, with 1,217 voices and 355 MB of waveforms. (Okay, that’s nothing …

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audioexpress

Mixing and Audio Interface, in the $450 MOTU Audio Express

The competition for your audio interface dollar is pretty heated these days, but MOTU’s latest – the Audio Express – packs a pretty impressive feature set for something costing US$449 list. It’s both a 6×6 audio interface and a mixer, with standalone mixer functionality so you can mix signals from the front-panel knobs without a computer attached. It also has connectivity features generally seen only in pricier, physically-larger boxes. MOTU tells CDM the quality is equal to their higher-end offerings, and other rivals in the $500-800 range. MOTU winds up on my short list as far as hardware that makes …

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A More Open Pro Tools 9 Works with Your Hardware, Workflow

To many users, it’s been a long time coming, but using Pro Tools software no longer means working exclusively with Pro Tools hardware. Pro Tools 9, announced today, is a “software-only” version. That is, you can use it with your hardware – your audio interface, your DSP tools of choice, even the built-in audio hardware on Macs and PCs when you’re on the go. Users are likely to remain fiercely loyal to their DAWs of choice, including Logic, DP, Cubase, SONAR, and Ableton Live. But today’s announcement is nonetheless big news for production. It means, on one hand, those tools …

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MOTU Traveler Mk3: More I/O, Features Hit Mobile FireWire Audio Interface

Let’s start with the important bit: the Traveler really is a mobile interface. It weighs under four pounds and fits into a backpack; it’s actually a little lighter and more compact than a typical 15” laptop. Now, if your input and output needs are limited (a mic in, headphone out, and stereo out do suit a lot of folks just fine), your options are obviously many. But the Traveler manages to be this small and pack an absurd amount of I/O and functionality into that small space. Audio interfaces tend not to get a whole lot of updates, but MOTU …

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Optimizing for Vista: Inside the Mechanics of SONAR 8 with Cakewalk Engineering

Vista, launched in an ice house in Toronto. That’s where I want my project studio this winter, for sure. Photo (CC Sam Javanrouh. On a purely technical level, how does Windows Vista work with a leading pro audio application? A lot of that depends on just how much the developer does to tune their software, and to hook into some of the new audio technologies in the OS. I wanted to know more about how Cakewalk’s SONAR 8 DAW was specifically optimized for Windows Vista. SONAR 7 was already out in front with support for Vista’s audio plumbing, but SONAR …

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Free Wavosaur: Wonderful Windows Audio Editor with VST

Wavosaur is a free audio editor for Windows that just hit version 1.0. It’s really good stuff: not only is it free, but the whole app is tiny (488kb), it’s designed to fit on a portable USB key, it hosts VSTs, and it’s an elegant waveform editor reminiscent of early versions of SoundForge. Even if you’ve got a wave editor of choice, might be worth sticking this on your USB key when you’re on the go — especially since it supports Windows 98, XP, and Vista. And it doesn’t have an installer or touch the Registry. I just gave it …

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