MTU.Community (
-   Microeditor Help - Versions 5.0-5.5 (
-   -   The Future of Microsound? (

MMVOX February 17th, 2004 09:04 PM

The Future of Microsound?
I love MicroSound. I've been a user of the system since 1994. I've succeeded in convincing several colleagues in the broadcast industry to purchase systems. When I demonstrated the software to them, they were hooked. When I would train radio station staff on MicroEditor, THEY were hooked. Since leaving broadcasting myself in 1999, I purchased my own system which I used and loved since that time. No problems whatsoever, until 2 weeks ago when a virus invaded my system. As my system is being serviced, I realize that I got spoiled by the reliability of my system and now must purchase a second system for the sake of keeping my business going in the event of another serious crash. Naturally, another MicroSound MicroEditor system is my first choice. Just so you know, when it comes to computers I am a bonehead. I use them, but I have very little aptitude when it comes to dealing with what happens "inside". If I'm reading correctly, the overall message that I'm getting in the forum is that MTU is no longer developing MicroEditor. Is that true? The most elegant and brilliant system I've seen may be coming to an end?

geezer February 18th, 2004 06:10 PM

I certainly in no way speak for MTU, but I have to say that I have drawn this conclusion from everything MTU has said and done for a number of years now.

There has been a porting of MicroEditor to the newer OSs, but I have seen virtually nothing else truly new for at least 6 years (if not longer), and any talk of improvements, modernization or upgrades from the users results in either silence or grave concern about the costs versus benefits.....Nothing would lead me to believe that there has been any movement torwards real development.

With their Karaoke business driving the company, this is understandable. I, personally, have gotten way beyond the sadness and despair mode and have been trying for several years to get a little help from MTU and/or users in improving the file sharing capabilities of MTU so that it can maintain a healthy place in my modern studios. Little of this help has been forthcoming, but one can hope.

If you can offer suggestions for prolonging the life of this system, please bring them forth.

MMVOX February 18th, 2004 08:50 PM

Future of Microsound
Hi Geezer,

My suggestions for the prolonging of this system can only be made in layman's terms. If MTU wishes to be involved, it would entail a real promotional and sales effort, so that you would actually see the system in catalogues and magazines worldwide. I find it hard to believe that MicroEditor cannot be an economically viable entity if it can be made to operate on non-proprietary hardware. Do you think MTU would be interested in selling the rights and designs to MicroEditor to another company...or a group of users who may be interested in the further development of the system? I'm no expert in IT or computers....but can't the system be adapted for today's hardware so that anyone...from the kid recording a garage band in his the big city advertising producer/editor....could have a reliable MicroEditor on his/her computer? I don't know the answer. All I know is that it's been a great system for me and my business and I would love to use it for the next 30 years.

geezer February 19th, 2004 12:32 PM

I will reiterate again that I in no way speak for MTU, but....

The central issue for changing MicroEditor always seems to be hiring the original main programmer- Larry- to rewrite code for it. His time is expensive, and he no longer is employed by MTU. (Please correct me if I am wrong about this, Dave!)......There have several times been suggestions from the MTU admin that Larry could be brought on to do some rewriting if the goals and expenses were clearly defined and, perhaps, if enough users would underwrite the costs....I and a few others have indicated more than once that we might be willing to go down that path (i.e.- paying money for specific features), but nothing has ever come of it.

That is why I have taken the tack- more or less continually- of defining a markedly more narrow and extremely inexpensive set of goals having to do with simple file recognition and translation.....I have to tell you that it disturbs me greatly that I have gotten no real response on this front either.

I don't know what else to do. The will to insure some future for this product does not seem to be there in Raleigh. It is a strange market, for sure, but I wish there was a little more information forthcoming.

Again: Dave and Co., pipe up and tell me I am wrong......Or pipe up and tell us something. I have been an almost rabid supporter and promoter of Microeditor since I got the system 10 years ago, but it is increasingly hard to justify this attitude. Product support is what sold me originally and what drove my enthusiasm.

The system is still fast and fluid within its feature set, but that matters less and less if I cannot interface with other modern systems and file structures. I end up defining a smaller and smaller area of my business where the efficiency of MicroEditor makes sense.

MMVOX December 1st, 2006 09:10 PM

It's a sin.
Hi Geezer,

Well, okay, not really a "sin". I wanted to get back to you, now that a ton of time has passed. Although I've used and loved MicroEditor since 1994, I've been forced to relegate my system to backup status. I've gone to Pro Tools and it's excellent. I would have preferred to stay with MicroEditor, but two things forced my hand:

1) Lack of development and support. To this day I find it hard to believe that MicroEditor would not be supported over the long term by fans such as myself, and those that I've turned on to the system. Granted, this would take a bit of effort on the part of MTU...the software development needed to keep up with the times, and equally important the marketing drive to get the system into catalogues, dealers, etc. so that people are actually aware of its existence.

2) On a personal level: I got ripped off. A while back I contacted MTU about purchasing a backup hard drive and CD burner for my system. I could have bought this stuff anywhere, but I went to MTU out of loyalty, respect, and for their expertise. I purchased FROM THEM the equipment THEY recommended. When the hard drive proved to not be compatible, I requested a refund. They refused because I had waited longer than 30 days after purchase. (It was in fact longer than 30 days...installation of this drive wasn't an emergency or anything so my computer tech was in no rush to get to me.) Although it's not much, I am responsible for at least 10 MicroEditor systems being purchased from MTU between 1994 and 1999. That said, and since it was THEIR equipment recommendation that proved to be inaccurate, I would have expected a refund, or a credit, on the hard drive. Their inaccuracy occurred at the time of purchase, not after the 30 days.

Certainly it's not the money...MTU obviously needed the cash more than me. It's the principle that is important to me.

But it's been a great learning experience. They demonstrated a valuable lesson to me about how NOT to treat my clients, and as a result most of my business is from repeat clients. They forced me to be open minded about embracing and learning a new system, and Pro Tools is great, fun and very well supported. And finally, they showed me that all that wacky religious crap that appears in the MicroEditor manual under "Credits" is nothing but lip most religious zealots, they can talk the talk but cannot walk the walk.

geezer December 1st, 2006 11:51 PM

glad to see you are moving on...
Happy to see you are settled in to a new system.

As I have said elsewhere on this forum, I found my highly affordable, high quality replacement for Microeditor a few years ago with Steinberg's Wavelab. Once I figured out how to use it, it was actually faster than Microeditor and enough of an improvement in quality that I was able to figure out a whole new set of quality considerations with digital audio, and really upgraded my mastering skills for CDs.

I still have 2 functional MicroSound systems, but have actually not powered them up in 2 or 3 years at least.....I should probably pull them off the shelf and spin the drives up to see if I can salvage any of the somewhat important files still in that format, I guess.

....There was a "golden age" of support and development for MTU and Microeditor that, when I think back on it, was actually pretty short for me....perhaps only 3 or 4 years. The amazing thing, though, is that the original product and paradigm were so elegantly designed and forward thinking that the lack of continued development did not kill it completely for maybe 5 years after that. It certainly would have been better for MTU to have been more forthcoming about the dead end they were aimed at, but the quality did ultimately justify the investment, I guess.....even though, in my case, that investment was pretty considerable ($12,500. in 1994, and at least another $3,000. over the next 3 years or so).

Although it would have been nice for MTU to have made the transition into the new age, we are actually living in pretty lucky times right now. All the companies still left standing have managed to come up with very mature, good sounding software packages, and the computers they ride on have lots of power right out of the box.....At least we all have some place comfortable to land after our the wings fell off our airplane in mid-flight. I was definitely a little scared when I heard the engines sputtering back around 2001-2 (after several years of entreating MTU to give them a valve job), but my heart stopped racing when I got Wavelab working....and there are lots of other functional systems now. Whew.

MMVOX December 2nd, 2006 08:47 AM

Well said
Hi Geezer,

Very well said. You are right, we are fortunate to have the choices in software/hardware available to us right now. Many of them are excellent.

I made the move to ProTools in 2004, but I do power up my MicroEditor once a month or so just to spin the drive and see if it still works. And it does. I was just extremely disappointed because MicroEditor was the first DAW that I learned, and it opened up all kinds of possibilities for me in broadcast audio and music production, allowing me to be more productive and creative. Ironically, one of the last voiceover projects that I recorded on MicroEditor was a narration for Avid/Digidesign....makers of ProTools.

admin December 2nd, 2006 11:39 AM

Well gentlemen, this is an interesting set of posts.

First, MTU IS and always WILL BE the Grandfather of the DAW industry. MIX Mag documented that we were the first in their Sept. 1997 "The Audio Industry: 20 Years" issue. We knew that as we watched everyone else come in after us. I even sent MIX 12 pages of history, some of which they weren't aware of, that proved to their satisfaction that we were the first.

MTU pioneered and defined the "bleeding edge" in DAWs and microcomputers, starting in 1968. We cut the path from nothing. We then paved the road for others to drive on. No matter what you want to think or say today, we did it, and Digidesign and Steinberg benefited from our pioneering work. We were shipping 9 years before Digidesign started their first product, before even their Sound Tools. Steinberg was more than a decade later.
  1. Motorola killed Microeditor. Although we had a 5 year guarantee from the DSP Manager, with 3 of his managers hearing (and later attesting to) his promise, 8 months later we received our "last buy" warning on the 56401 Digital Audio chip... which was the clock heart of the Krystal DSP card. We ordered what we thought would be enough for then next few years, based on our sales forecasts and past performance. To redesign Krystal, was out of the question. We had lost our senior engineer to SAS. He was both hardware designer and lead programmer. There was no way to keep him at any price as the DAW market was too volatile for him. Redesigning the hardware would have taken probably $150,000 before we were tested and released. It was not feasible.

  2. Radio producers needed one set of advancements, studios a different, and video yet another major shift. Thus, our markets required diverging technologies.[/b] MTU didn't have the staff to excel in 3 different directions, and you both know MTU never shipped junk! Our "advisors" were pulling us in different directions, and made it clear that unless we did what they recommended, we would not make it. Well, I agreed.

  3. The DAW market shifted drastically within a year. The software only products became usable, and ate the market from below. Lots of sales we used to make for editing work were now going to... Goldwave, CoolEdit Pro, Sound Forge and others. These had no hardware cost like our Krystal card so their retail price was below our manufacturing MATERIALS cost! :e

  4. The other "high end DAW" systems with hardware, were in the same boat with us. They too had to redesign from ground up to support 192KS/s, add POW-R dithering, change from SMPTE, and more... or die. Most also died with us that were at the "mid range" in price. Digidesign was sold to Avid, which aided their survival and eventually winning the "high end" market.

    Steinberg, Syntrillium and Sonic Foundry were sold, and their products survive today. "Small" companies are gone, and the market players are Mega-Internationals now. Simply stated, the DAW market we pioneered... matured. MTU would NOT have made it even if we tried. As President, I made the right decision because unlike most of our DAW competitors, MTU is still around for you to post in our Forums! :g

Geezer, you were one of our lead "advisors". You pushed the envelope all the time. Your suggestions were superior, and drove us to higher excellence. I can't estimate the massive number of hours I spent thinking about each suggestion you made; implementing many of them as you know. And one of your posts in 2004 said it all: "That is, I would not have realized how to work fast or how fast you can work - and how good things can sound- without having used Microeditor." However, we couldn't afford to go where you and others made it clear we "had to go". After doing my own analysis I agreed. Given the 4 points above, which I clearly saw coming, and with no offer to sell out, we got out before bankrupty.

Markets change  *  Technologies change  *  Companies change  *  The world changed

MMVOX, your request for a full refund was made more than 180 days after you received the drive! :r And just like you, we didn't need the money... it was the principle of the matter. We all dropped our jaws when we got your first letter demanding we refund and take the product back after so long. Had you requested after 60 or 90 days, we would have negotiated a refund. Also, as I remember, the technical problem wasn't ALL MTU's fault, but its not worth proving it now. We always dealt ethically with you, proven by your own claim that you recommended us from 1994 -1999. We walked the walk. I truly am sorry that you feel you must insult us now. Un-forgiveness destroys a person. It is time to let it go and move on in life.

I'm glad you both have found new audio tools. Enjoy them. I wish you well in your endeavors.

We all worked well together for a Season and a Reason, but not for a Lifetime. Be glad it happened. Don't grieve it is gone. :)

geezer December 2nd, 2006 04:08 PM

Well, Dave.....although there were some critical communication errors made by MTU to its customers during that fatal period in the late 90s, you know I understand what you went through and why it happened. I also always understood the anger from other users that surfaced. There were express and implied promises that were not kept. This is old hat now, however, and anyone with their eyes open knew what the deal was by 2001 or so.....As I said in my previous post, I did not feel cheated. Saddened and paniced for awhile, but not cheated. Microeditor carried me through just fine until its replacement(s) appeared.

I always thought that you would have been saved if you had called on me and/or Charles to help you sell your product to NPR....I went back there briefly again in 1996 during the time that Sonic Solutions was exercising its attempt to develop its product to meet the NPR spec. I ran into their rep there and asked him what they had to do in the way of development (mostly things that Microeditor already did!) and how much of it was done (15%!!!). They never finished, and I heard that NPR had to eat something like a million dollars that they had paid them.

I recently had an opportunity to write an article for Radio magazine about the state of the DAW that you have maybe seen. In doing so, I ended up rehashing a lot of the history you alluded to above. It is still amazing how far you were ahead of the pack you were when I bought my system in 1994. Sound Tools was trash, and the early Pro Tools was not really any better. Sonic Solutions was just barely beginning....As far as I can tell, MTU was the only system out there with internal 32bit architecture and high bit rate accumulators.....(But I did not know that was why the system sounded good. This meant that when my colleague from NPR asked me what the internal bit rate of the system was during the time that they were looking around, I couldn't tell him....a crucial communication/selling deficit.)

In that same Radio magazine article, I talked about the state of customer support now, which, as we all know, is basically FAQs, slowly answered e-mails and downloaded manuals. MTU is the only software company that ever provided the incredible kind of customer support I got from 1994-1998 or so, and I am still thankful for that. I think most of your customers who were angry were disturbed by the disappearance of that support, even though noone else had ever provided anything like it. It was a tough pill for many of us to swallow. I'm sure it was even a tougher pill for you to swallow.

....But, you know me. I'm a realist. I came to MTU after running through the capabilities (some of which were vaporware) of another editing system in under 2 years, and having them completely change their business model and abandon their pro market in that same time frame. I have seen digital multitrack machines with incredible functionality and quality come and go in as little as 2 years, even when marketed by huge, international companies. The 8 years or so I got out of my MTU systems is a lifetime compared to most, and, as I said earlier, we are lucky enough to live in an age where computer recording and editing has really matured and become extremely affordable.

I thank you for your intial support and your and Larry's initial commitment to elegant programming. MTU's history from 1977 to 1998 was unmatched, really. It would have been great if the transition was a little more elegant, as well, but you did not simply abandon the product as so many others have done during this past, volatile decade. It would have been great if someone besides me were actually telling everyone on the forum that development was over, but you were definitely not making any new promises and you kept the forum up for everyone to get info. I thank you for that as well.

Like I say, I don't feel cheated. I got my money's worth.

admin December 7th, 2006 09:45 AM

Thanks Jim.

Hindsight is 20/20. All the communications I had with NPR, which included my traveling to DC and meeting with who I thought was the right person, came to naught. Their myopic view of DAWs was singularly focused on their funding of Sonic Solutions as you say. To have changed and allowed MTU in would have been tantamount to admitting their mistake. At the time that we needed to see some progress with NPR, it was not possible. Such is life.

I can say that even this week I have discussed trying to take parts of the Microeditor Paradigms and embed them into a new software-only product. This discussion happened when one of our contractors was trying to do the equivalent of create a simple segment, and then go back and extend its ending to now include more of the original file. Sound Forge wouldn't allow it, and we wasted minutes going back to the orginal and redoing a new file.

Thus, I can truly say there was never a point where I made a FIRM DECISION that MTU would never again take up Microeditor. If there had been, I would have said so. The technology we have in source code is still extremely valuable, if we could see a way to penetrate a viable market.

However, to survive, as we have in the past, we migrated to a new emerging market - Karaoke - that allowed a small company to thrive. We are on the verge of making some major thrusts this month that may change the way Karaoke is done. It will be our first attempt to change an industry other than defining the bleeding edge... and others reaping the profits of our pioneering work.

Time will tell. Bryan often reminds me our current market does not have the savy or technical chops that our Microsound customers did. Tis true, and we miss you guys a lot.

I hope you and your wife have a Merry christmas! :)

geezer December 7th, 2006 10:53 AM

Merry Christmas
....And Merry Christmas to you, as well.

I know you thought many times of developing a software-only product. The time has probably passed for you at this point, however, because some of the products are so well developed. From what I have seen, Sound Forge is a dinosaur that works about as well as my Turtle Beach system from 1991....But Wavelab, Adobe Audition and other very affordable packages all work quite well and have had good backing for continual development.

Wavelab still seems to have the most similar functionality to Microeditor. I always felt that this was in part due to what I understand to be a single programmer working on it, which is similar to the way you guys developed Microeditor. I also felt that some of its functionality had to have taken cues from observation of MTU's work.....the "S" hot key for clip splitting is the same, for instance. Since clip/segment splitting was my most frequent action in Microeditor, this caught my attention right away....But all the other things it contains would probably take you a very long time to develop on your own, and with Yamaha's money behind it now, you would probably never catch up....This was, of course, clear back in 2002 or so, and is now old hat.

At any rate: Ho, Ho, Ho and a very Happy Karaoke to you all....and to all a happy audio computing experience.

MMVOX December 11th, 2006 11:44 PM

Wow...a response from MTU!
Hi Dave (I assume it’s Dave),

You know what? You’re absolutely right. On everything in your post except one item. Also, there is an apology which appears later in this post.

I agree that while MicroEditor lead, others followed. You did, in fact, pave the way. MicroEditor was brilliant. Absolutely, positively no doubt. The concept of “floating tracks”? Sheer genius. And when you say “We all worked well together for a Season and a Reason, but not for a Lifetime. Be glad it happened. Don't grieve it is gone”; those are wise words indeed, an insight that I should have come to on my own, but did not until reading your post.

I consider it extremely fortunate that I had the opportunity to be introduced to digital recording and editing on MTU’s MicroEditor. To this day, I recall the excitement of going through the tutorial, learning the program, and realizing the awesome potential. I used the system to create better and more creative productions faster, and even during the dog days of radio industry consolidation from 1996 – 1998, MicroEditor allowed me to meet preposterous deadlines and workloads without throwing my standards out the window. I even won awards for my work produced utilizing MicroEditor. I’m also proud that, during this period, I was able to successfully fight off corporate attempts to convert all station DAW systems over to inferior products like Sadie, SAW, Fostex and others. Although frustrating and challenging at the time, (because most of these folks had never even heard of MTU or MicroEditor) all it took was for me to demonstrate MicroEditor and upper management would also come to realize its superiority. Even when I started my own business, I chose to purchase MicroEditor due to its reliability over ProTools at the time.

I bring this bit of insignificant ancient history up because it was difficult for me to understand how MicroEditor would be in a position to just end. Before reading your post, I was not aware of your issues with Motorola or with the loss of your primary programmer. Nor was I fully aware of the paradigm shifts in the world of DAWs until a few years ago. I was in a position where I was using a great system, and had no need to research others. Sort of like if you have a great, reliable car you may not have a need to go to other dealerships to look at other models. This is the kind of brand loyalty most companies can only dream of having. And it is a fact that every other producer to whom I introduced the system felt the same way. Marketers call people like me “sneezers”…someone who spreads the word to as many people as possible. When the time would come for my business to grow to the point where I needed multiple workstations, MicroEditor would have been my first choice. So, from that perspective, my recent post reflects a certain amount of frustration upon realizing that the originator in the field of Digital Audio Workstations was pulling the plug. For that, I apologize. It comes from me being such a rabid fan.

Part of my business involves performing voiceovers at studios throughout the Northeast, primarily in New York City. Most of them use ProTools. But I don’t understand how MicroEditor, if they were aware of its existence, would not meet or exceed their needs. Yes, for music production they would require simultaneous multi-track recording and on-board signal processing. But just like my friend the chef who once told me that all he needs to create a great meal is a pan and source of heat, it seems to me that all the basics were there in MicroEditor.

I teach a college level Broadcast Performance course, and I can’t help but think how great it would be to teach on MicroEditor instead of Adobe Audition (as required by the College) and the subsequent sales potential for MTU of students who eventually might be in a position to make DAW purchases either on behalf of their employers, or for their own project studios.

So, Dave, it’s not a matter of moving on. That’s been done. However, from time to time I choose to check back on the MTU site to see if there is any sort of development with MicroEditor. Most recently I went to the site after receiving an email regarding a sale on your Hoster karaoke products. While I was there I wanted to follow up on an old post.

Apparently, years ago, everyone else had come to the conclusion and realization that MicroEditor was done, except for me. Our hard drive issue/dispute opened my eyes to that same realization. In retrospect, I was spoiled by the great performance of MicroEditor and by the previously responsive customer support from MTU. Yes, it is a fact that I waited a long time to request (not demand, as you said) that MTU take back the hard drive. It’s not like the drive is fruit or vegetable produce that goes bad after a while. The proof of that is I was able to sell it to someone on Ebay. I did not cash that person’s check until I was sure he was happy.

It seemed strange to me that an incorrect recommendation was made by one of your employees, but MTU would assume no responsibility for this inaccurate equipment recommendation. The incorrectness of the recommendation is an event which preceded my delay. You, Dave, did not handle the recommendation or sale of the hard drive, but Doug did. I still have a copy of my original inquiry and his response and recommendation. I know (and he knows) that he was not as straightforward with you has he could have been. Why would I buy a component from MTU, the “mothership” as it were, if it was not compatible with my system? Can you answer that question? If the tables were turned, I believe that you would feel the same way that I did. It wasn’t the money or anything. It was only a $180.00 expense. I just wanted a way to back up my system – in my mind, a reasonable goal. It’s interesting to note that, subsequently, MTU chose to not recommend any sort of workable solution to my interest in having a “replica” or backup of my main MicroEditor hard drive. A solution for which I would gladly pay.

In retrospect, I acknowledge that my own policy of “when in doubt, do the right thing”, while suitable for my business, may not be suitable for other businesses. So I shouldn’t expect that sort of service from others. Although I have to admit that I do sleep really well at night.

Let’s be clear: Outside of the issue regarding the inaccurate hard drive recommendation, MTU always dealt with me in an ethical manner. I never made any sort of statement to the contrary. For you to insinuate and imply that I did is not truthful.

I owe you an apology for the insulting comments on my post. At times I use language which is more colorful than called for. My posted comments reflected a lack of good judgment on my part, and for that I apologize.

That said, I wish you the best of luck and success with your karaoke systems. And I still look forward to some sort of return of MicroEditor.

Rich LePage December 21st, 2006 08:10 PM

Gosh, hadn't checked in for a while and then saw all these new posts.

Just wanted to say that I still use it, nearly every day. I've yet to find a better/faster/more intuitive toolset for a lot of the intensive dialog editing jobs I seem to get - also very often for compositing sfx and other BGs.

That said, for sure some things are lacking due to development ending, and things like plug-in handling that really never did work. That's a shame given all the plug ins that are currently around. And of course, surround and many other things can't be done completely with the systems anymore.

I've been using Adobe Audition for that. When they came out with 2.0 earlier this year, many things that sort-of or "almost kinda" worked now seem to work much better, and some new things appeared too. It's far from perfect, and like many huge companies, Adobe is less responsive, though better than my Digidesign support experiences for sure!! But of course MTU always had support that others did not.

I still do a lot of my first pass intensive editing with Medit/M'sound and then save out the material as WAVs and bring them into something else for future compositing and mixing, and that seems to work well for many projects, except when greater than 16 bit material is involved and/or Bcast WAV files.
Just spent all of today doing that in fact.

I also still do CDs with it. Usually I'll mix down digitally (but sometimes analog still!) and go into a 2nd Medit system, many times roughly hitting in track markers on the fly, then going back and sliding them where they need to be and doing any other tweaking needed.

Then I make the image files with MicroCD, but do the actual burning with Golden Hawk's CDRWIN as I've described previously here. It supports many more newer CD burners than MicroCD did.

Funny enough, the very first CD burner bought from MTU- when they were still expensive-- a Yamaha 102 caddy drive-- continues to yield really good results for slow speed burning when I check the result with the Clover analyzer. But many of the newer burners do as well - though a lot of 'em won't do a 2x burn anymore. The MAM-A media lately though has been problematic-- with quality (in terms of errors that can be repeatedly measured on the Clover) all over the map, from extremely good to really bad. Taiyo media runs better (though not in the real old burners) -- but they only make 80 minute blanks, and I've had differing answers from replication plants about sending a master on an 80 minute blank for what will ultimately become a Red Book compliant (74 min max) end product CD.

But like the others, I still wish Medit etc had been developed more -- even just to allow Broadcast WAV files in and out if nothing else.

Still, all things considered, it continues to play a big role in a lot of the projects we do. I have a Pro Tools 002 type system here, but I nearly never use it-- and often scream when I have to! ( compatibility is really the only usual use we make of it). Audition - at least to me-- is way more intuitive than that, especially using it with an inexpensive control surface (which actually does work in version 2). And it seems to host the Waves, Izotope and other plug ins pretty well in current version.

But nothing I've found works like Medit does, and I'm still using our several systems all the time. That MTU has continued to exist is something I'm very grateful for, even if they had to drastically change direction. My systems of various vintages are still a joy to work with when you're faced with the zillion-edit type things we often seem to get into around here. You get a lot more done in a given amount of time, and the stuff sounds good.

Like everyone here, I sure wish it had kept going, but completely understand the several dilemmas Dave and MTU faced with it.

Best wishes to all here for great holidays and a wonderful 2007! I'll keep running my old Win98 and WinME Medit stuff for a long time to come, I bet.
I actually have it working pretty well on one XP machine too.


Gary Boggess October 19th, 2007 02:47 PM

How well does Krystal & D/A-A/D external stack up to pROtoys specs today?
I still use the MicroSound with success and pride. I've done my own comparisons... but am not sure if ProTools published specs are MEASURED and TESTED the same as was MicroSound's. I understand the differences in features, outputs and etc. But I've been challenged by potential clients about the quality of the D/A I/O.

Here is an excerpt of what I've written to potential clients who have inquired:

Gary's Comparisons between MicroSound & ProTools HD3 & other notes:

Needless to say, 100,000 tracks is a pretty good bonus. But, who cares right? ProTools is like Paris Hilton... popular.

#1) MicroSound has more useful sample rate frequencies to choose from. The highest being 48Khz... which is still considered to be more than adequate for all kinds of recording from broadcasting, orchestral recordings and etc. My conclusion is that 48Khz is still more than adequate for recordings. The benefits of 96-192Khz are academic and NOT practical... and it's like writing checks your ears can't cash. The market place will never HEAR the benefits of 96-192Khz sampling rate...especially NOT on I-Tunes!!!!

#3) ProTools may have higher sampling rates... but ProTools and MicroSound BOTH have 24-bit encoding D/A converters. That's that for that. TWENTY FOUR BIT ENCODING IS TWENTY FOUR BITS. But lets' look closer at some other factors that ARE NOT THE SAME:

a) The Krystal DSP audio card analog A/D and D/A converters provide excellent quality. The Krystal's THD+N (Total Harmonic Distortion+Noise) is 0.006%. Krystal's noise floor response below 1kHz is quite flat giving a very clear sound. (See the chart above). Now here's BOMB DROPPER:


PROTOOLS INPUT THD+N> THD+N: 0.00056% (-105 dB); -1 ' @ 997(1000) Hz (Note 1: Measurement made using +4 dBu inputs or outputs) plus PROTOOLS OUTPUT>>>THD+N: 0.00056% (-105 dB); -1 ' @ 997(1000) Hz; see Note 1 >>>INPUT AND OUTPUTS ADDED TOGETHER EQUALS 0.00112

MICROSOUND THD+N> The chart shows the THD+N distortion to noise in both the input and output analog circuits TOGETHER or combined at 0.0121%. So when the channels are rated ONE at a time like ProTools rates their specs, MicroSound comes in at a THD+N for ONE input channel = really 0.006%!!! ProTools wins by 0.00038. So MicroSound comes out fairly well considering MTU nearly MATCHED ProTools TEN YEARS AGO!

The major POINT IS>>> ProTools specs are measured ONE input and ONE output channel AT A TIME where MicroSound measured theirs as a TWO CHANNEL measuring the entire card... for a actual per channel input or output 0.0015 THD+N rating each... which is just a tad higher than ProTools as of 2007. Hardly anything to argue about! And it's certainly no reason for me to go out and spend $40,000 or more... for 99,744 LESS TRACKS than ProTools total of 256! I mean... duh!

#4) MicroEditor mixing computes with 24-bit precision. Even projects using 16-bit sound files can output digitally as valid 24-bits after fades, gains and mixing, sounding better to human ears than many competitor's 24-bit sounds! So even though MicroSound is recording in 16-bit @44.1Khz... EVERYTHING; editing, fades, mixing, processing, and ALL AUDIO processing is ALWAYS HAPPENING at 24-bit, using 56-bit accumulators to ensure bit depth and bit word accuracy!

#5) ProTools advertises their "2007 FLAGSHIP" D/A I/O module to have the (Dynamic SNR) SIGNAL TO NOISE RATIO of 115 dB

From the Krystal card manual: MicroSound's ten year standard for (Dynamic SNR) SIGNAL TO NOISE is 110 dB averaged across all frequencies, not just at 1K... so again, hardly anything to argue about.

#6) ProTools bandwidth is listed at >> Sample Rate = 48 kHz, Noise BW = 22 Hz – 20 kHz unless otherwise noted

Page 210 in the MicroSound manual states bandwidth specs at @48Khz sample rate to be a reported bandwidth of 0 Hz to 23,400 KHz. Saying that "MicroSound achieves a -3db down (half-power) point at 48% of Nyquist... one of the highest bandwidths available in a computer DAW"

So much for specs... MicroSound's over sonic integrity stands neck to neck with ProTools and EXCEEDS ProTools in BANDWIDTH.

And when you consider that it offers:

* instant fades (unlike ProTools process of writing each fade to a file)

* accurate fade ramps (unlike ProTools' quantized group sample or step zipper fades)

* 100,000 tracks (unlike ProTools' 256 max)

* Zero occurrences of audio file corruption (unlike ProTools historic issues)

To list a few major benefits... it's just STUPID to say MicroSound can't compete with ProTools. While all my friends are STILL (one last month) loosing projects due to corruption on their $40,000 plus ProTools HD3 systems... I relax and get work done! AS for 24-bit, I don't worry about it because between microphones that top off at 16K and guitar amps that still buzz and hum, and end product increasingly selling as I-Tunes MP3s... it's rediculous to talk high sampling rates. And in according to Moultan below, we can't hear 24-bit, and if we DID we'd be hearing it at the LOW END of the dynamic range.... well below the noise floor of 90% of the listening environments and playback levels. READ THE FOLLOWING!!!!

Dave Moulton, with his son Dr. Mark Moulton, provide subjective measurement of audio systems and devices for companies such as Lucent Technologies. Moulton is a monthly columnist for TV Technology Magazine and has regularly written for Recording Magazine since 1992.
Moultan says: "In fact, double blind tests often seem to show that listeners can’t reliably distinguish between 16-bit audio and 20-bit audio! When we increase the resolution of the signal to 20 bits, we don’t change the magnitude of 0 dBFS, all we do is push the magnitude of the Least Significant Bit further down toward the grunge and noise floor, so that for a 20-bit word, the LSB is equal to .012 milliVolts. We’ve increased the overall magnitude of the signal by only .18 milliVolts! Going to 24 bits from 16 bits only gains us .2 milliVolts of signal resolution!! we have a serious mismatch of reference levels here, and it unreasonably diminishes any benefit we might expect from the enhanced resolution of 20 or 24-bit digital signals, relative to our venerated 16-bit signal. Failure to reasonably manage the relative headroom of analog and acoustic realms vis-a-vis our digital signal has painted us into a serious wastage of dynamic range. It also means that the resolution benefits of 20-bit and 24-bit signals are not only hard to hear, they’re, well, inaudible as we currently do it. Uh-oh!"

Checl this data out yourself at:

So, I am posting to invite Admin (Dave Cox) or someone who KNOWS, how much better, if any, is the new HD3ProTool HD3 192 I/O???? Especially in the THD+noise measurements. -Gary
ProTool HD3 192 I/O $ 3,995.00

Overview Features Specifications Download

192 I/O, the flagship of the Pro Tools|HD interface family, is the best-sounding audio interface ever offered from Digidesign, rivaling similar products costing more than twice its price. In addition to support for up to 16 channels of analog and digital input and output, 192 I/O features a wide range of analog and digital I/O options to choose from, including 8 channels of high-definition, pristine-quality analog I/O, 8 channels of AES/EBU, 8 channels of TDIF, 16 channels of ADAT, and 2 additional channels of AES/EBU or S/PDIF digital I/O.

192 expansion cards
Along with its outstanding sonic specs, 192 I/O includes an additional I/O option bay, allowing you to add more inputs or outputs, and making it one of the most unique and flexible audio interfaces on the market. To expand the analog I/O capacity of 192 I/O, you can add either a 192 AD card, providing 8 more channels of high-definition analog input, or the 192 DA card, which gives you 8 additional channels of analog output. 192 I/O can also be outfitted with the 192 Digital card, which adds 8 channels of AES/EBU, TDIF, and ADAT I/O connections.

192 AD Expansion Card
192 DA Expansion Card
192 Digital Expansion Card

2001 Junipero Serra Blvd.
Daly City, CA 94014

In designing the Pro Tools|HD environment, we didn't just stop at supporting up to 96 kHz sample rates — we decided to go all the way and support up to an astonishing 192 kHz. As the flagship audio interface for Pro Tools|HD, 192 I/O supports 192, 176.4, 96, 88.2, 48, and 44.1 kHz sample rates.

With 192 I/O, you're prepared for both working with the latest standards in the world of professional audio production as well as for the emergence of future standards. The new, higher sample rates and 24-bit resolution you get with 192 I/O mean you're able to capture every nuance of sound with the utmost clarity and precision.

50 possible inputs and outputs (yeah... for about $35,000+ with interest)

Supports up to 16 simultaneous channels of high-definition I/O

Extremely flexible analog and digital I/O

Card option bay for analog or digital I/O expansion with 192 AD, 192 DA, or 192 Digital cards

World-class 24-bit/192 kHz A/D and D/A conversion

Comes with a wide range of digital I/O, including 8 channels of AES/EBU I/O, 8 channels of TDIF I/O, 16 channels of ADAT I/O, and 2 additional channels of AES/EBU or S/PDIF I/O <MicroSound has all of this stuff too...

Word (1x) and Slave Clock (256x) input/output

Switchable, real-time sample rate conversion on digital inputs on the 192 Digital card, which allows easy streaming of digital signals at any sample rate

Soft-Clip Limiter that allows higher levels to disk for punchier, hotter recordings

Expansion Port that allows for direct connection of another 192 I/O or 96 I/O

Legacy Peripheral port that allows for connection of 888|24, 882|20, 1622, or 24-Bit ADAT Bridge I/Os*

* At 48 kHz or lower sample rate

Width: 19 in / 48.26 cm

Height 3.5 in / 8.89 cm

Depth: 15.19 in / 38.58 cm
Weight: 20.17 lbs / 9.15 kg

Sample Rate: 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4, 192 kHz ±10%

Dynamic Range: 120 dB (A-weighted), 118 dB (unweighted); see Notes 1 and 2

THD+N: 0.00035% (-109 dB); +21 dBu @ 997 Hz; see Note 1

THD+N: 0.00035% (-109 dB); +21 dBu, 20 Hz – 20 kHz; see Note 1

Frequency Response: ±0.05 dB @ +2 dBu, 20 Hz – 20 kHz; see Notes 1 and 3


Sample Rate: 44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4, 192 kHz ±10%

Dynamic Range: 118 dB (A-weighted), 115 dB (unweighted); see Notes 1 and 4

THD+N: 0.00056% (-105 dB); -1 ' @ 997 Hz; see Note 1

Frequency Response: ±0.05 dB, -20 ', 20 Hz – 20 kHz; see Notes 1 and 3

Sample Rate = 48 kHz, Noise BW = 22 Hz – 20 kHz unless otherwise noted, Tambient = +25 C

Note 1: Measurement made using +4 dBu inputs or outputs
Note 2: ADC measured with analog input at -38 dBu @ 997 Hz
Note 3: Measured relative to level at 1 kHz
Note 4: Measured with digital input at -60 dBFS @ 997 Hz

geezer October 19th, 2007 04:01 PM

Current A/D and D/A boxes....
....There are a lot of A-D and D-A boxes out there now that "sound good", and you will find proponents for many of them, at all price levels. I think "sounds good", however, is a highly relative term, and any given system, sync method and upstream/downstream device setup will yield different sounding results....They may all still "sound good" but will sound different, in my experience.....

That being said, I don't think there is much doubt anywhere that nearly all converters these days that sample at 96k and up are usually supererior sounding to those of the era of the MTU boxes, when, that is, they are properly and well clocked.....MTUs converters, as far as I know, are limited to 16bits and 48k (+,- their syncing range). They were/are very good sounding within these limits, very good sounding, indeed.....Some of the best sounding for that era. I have noticed, however, that when I use newer, higher bandwidth converters, I tend to notice more detail and clarity (especially in the higher frequencies) than with the converters of the earlier era, depending on the material I am feeding in.

That, of course, is the bugaboo.....On one forum I used to participate in, someone was touting a new set of converters (AtoD, I think), and I asked this question: "What converters are you using to listen to your converters?"...Noone ever answered me, but that is the issue. The whole chain matters, and how you hear it at the end of the chain will color all opinions about any other part of the chain....

So, enough philosophical theory. As far as bang for the buck and great quality, I hear more and more about the Lynx Aurora 16 channel A-D and DA, which can be gotten for a street price of around $2500. Many people are foregoing the Apogees for these, especially since the Apogees cost at least twice as much (since you buy separate A-D and D-A).....Lynx also makes an 8 channel bi-directional version of the same box for, obviously, something like half the money.

As far as the new ProTools HD I/O, my only experience with this system was producing a recording at the NPR studios last year. NPR does not use the I/O boxes, but uses the conversion in their huge Studer digital console. I could not tell you whether that was a good decision or not, but I know they probably made the decision based on supposed technical and quality considerations from their point of view. Would I agree with those viewpoints? Would you? Who knows.

I personally will be taking a hard look at the Lynx box when I get some money, but my views may be different than others. I know Prism and Mytek have the votes of some of the high end guys and gals, but I like the converters on my DM2000 console for a lot of things, and I've been told they sound "gritty" by some of my trusted colleagues.....I also like the converters on my TC6000 because I can hit a button and change the way they sound! ("Vintage", "Bright", "Natural", etc.)

ProTools stuff is plain expensive, too, so that always colors my thinking about anything from them.

The other thing about the newer converters for me is that it has opened up a whole can of worms about digital stuff....When everything was limited to 48k, and you kept things in 16bit most of the time, the quality considerations were markedly fewer, to my way of thinking. I miss that sometimes. There are a bunch of my old 02R mixes to Medit at 16bit that still hold up really well....They may sound a tad band-limited to me compared to some of the newer stuff, but they still hold up.....When I made the change, it took me a long time to get things to settle down to where I understand what was needed to work with the new perception of greater bandwidth and detail. I don't really want to go back, but there are days when I miss the simplicity.

.....It is definitely confusing sometimes, too. I was just listening to one of my Blues Alley albums ('92 or so) yesterday, and much more pleased than I remembered. It was recorded to a 2" with Dolby SR through my Soundcraft 600B console (that printed eq to the tracks, which was a smarter decision on my part than I really understood at the time), then mixed back through the Soundcraft to DAT in sections, and edited on the Turtle Beach 56k editing system that I abandoned for MicroSound in '94.....It sounded better than I remembered. All the A-D conversion was solely at the input of the Panasonic 3700 DAT machines I was using.....In those days, there wasn't any real CD "mastering". People were just transferring to 3/4" video decks and inserting track IDs (PCM1630?).

So, all the stuff from those days sounds quieter, but the sonic characteristics seem to hold up. Pretty interesting.....There is one album from that era that I edited mosly on Medit (with a little bit of pop and click redrawing on Turtle Beach, which Medit never did, and which Turtle Beach did well) that received a loudness boost from an early TC box. The loudness change was astounding, and sounded pretty natural, but I can hear the compression now, at least compared to the newer software and hardware boxes.

I'm not sure what all this means except that I think the Lynx box is pretty spanky, and that the quality of the converters these days has a lot going on, but kind of increases our decision possibilities again, so doesn't exactly make our lives easier.

Rich LePage October 20th, 2007 12:38 PM

Ya got me on Digi specs- not sure they would tell how they measure for that matter either.

Only Digi stuff we have is an 002rack, and I nearly never use it. I did run it briefly with Audition 1.5 (an old version) using Digi's WAV (not ASIO) driver because 1.5 did not talk ASIO. Audition 2 (and 3 soon) does though.
I might mess with it as an i/o again (but Digi is XP only right now, like Waves) when Audition 3 shows up, and try to compare it to other stuff, but it's Digi's lower end anyhow.

In general, I just never liked Digi much. We bought the 002rack to be compatible with others, but that has (surprisingly) turned out to not be that big a deal for most of what we do. It has nearly never come up. We do a lot of our stuff start to finish. But many times with other work people send us elements to build with, sweeten, mix and master.
I thought being compatible would be impt with that, but nope- they just usually send "selects" and I also try to get the out-takes in case we need to use bits of them here and there.

From various friends and friendly competitors though, apparently Pro Tools compatibility is a big deal at some levels of the NYC market. Many high end ad clients bring in drives with PT sessions on them, says one guy I know who does a lot of that work. He winds up needing to have just about everything out there in terms of plug ins, etc to handle what comes in. But in reality, he does a lot of his work by taking stuff off PT and using an old NE Digital (the Synclavier folks) system that he's used for years with great success- then putting back into PT. I wonder if the clients even notice or know....

I've also heard good things about the Lynx stuff from folks whose opinion I value locally, as I value Jim's views. I'll have to give that a try too at some point.

I see Jim's another vintage Soundcraft fan. I mixed for ages on an old 800A board we still have, much modified - some non-standard EQ, whole board was re-capped, mostly new op amps too, and we added a better grade of Penny+Giles faders than it shipped with (when the original ones got noisy!)

But all those Digi specs (and all their marketing) are probably meant to drive the endless upgrade (just send $) and demand from some types of clients that you just gotta have that.

I did quite a bit of that kind of work for a long time, at various NYC studios.

That kinda client will jump whenever the place down the block gets the next upgrade of newest/latest. A lot of studios in NYC tried to cater to that market-- and few managed to do it with much success, though some did ride the endless new/improved cycle for a while. (prob they had rich investors! - in fact I know some did.) To me that's more the hotel biz than the audio biz.

We try to attract clients where it's more about the end result, not how we got there. I'm sure that's true of most of us Medit folks.

Gary Boggess October 20th, 2007 04:18 PM

The best feature any DAW could have...
is a talented user.

The end result IS what it's all about. All the AES hypesters and the MIX magazine advertisers can blab on endlessly about this spec and that spec.
I always say... it's NOT about what you have, it's what you can do with it.

I usually express it like this:
Go ahead... you can go buy Tiger Woods' clubs... but can you play HIS game with them? Sure enough, he could BEAT YOUR _SS WITH YOUR CRAPPY OLD SEARS CLUBS!!!! Even if with a significant handicap!

I've seen many great musicians play very well on standard instruments. It always kills me when some of these guys come in the studio with a ie: $3700 hand made bass... but can't play a decent bass line to save their life.

Rich LePage October 20th, 2007 05:04 PM

Totally true, indeed. My original mentor in all things audio
was/is Les Paul, and he sure proved that well enough!
I've heard stuff he did in the late 30s, disc to disc to
disc (like 4th or 5th generation, adding more parts
each time- the hard way!!) and for their time, they
sound damned good. Of course he was using a recording
lathe he built -- using an old Cadillac flywheel!! (not kidding).

Just talked w/him yesterday, his "home studio" (probably the
ORIGINAL home studio!!) is near here. We go back a lotta
years, I grew up with one of his sons. And that's
where my audio fate was sealed early on...

He still plays in club in NYC one night a week when he's up to it,
at age 92+ -- and he packs the place, too. They did a nice
American Masters on him that was recently on PBS, catch
a re-run if you can.

Gary Boggess October 20th, 2007 06:23 PM

24-bit OR Musicianship
Well... you can tell Les I said he was recording as good as 224-bit back in the 40's... because he actually HAD SOMETHING to record. What good is 24-bit in most sessions today? Might as well be at 0-bit because these so-called musicians today aren't 1-bit of good compared to the MAJORITY of the artists, writers and musicians in Les Paul's early years.

geezer October 20th, 2007 07:03 PM

I agree, plus Soundcraft..
I agree totally with the concept that the operator is the key.

I have never like PT/digidesign much, period, but I thought the tracks I recorded at NPR (PT HD) sounded pretty good there, though maybe a little more suspect when I got home. Being HD, I could never use their session data (totally encrypted), but, also being HD, I can walk away with Broadcast Wave files wish plop down just fine in almost any other system.

Earlier (TDM) PT sessions can be readily translated by some EDL software I have, so there really is no longer a big compatability issue unless you are locked into plugins and mixes on an HD session that noone is willing to translate backwards for you (which is obviously what Avid/Digidesign is hoping for).

People do say that HD sounds better than TDM, and I usually was able to hear problems with TDM mixes I heard.....However, one of my longest friends and musical colleagues who mixed his last couple of albums at home (stellar sounding) and mixed his daughter's hit album in Canada (she's like no. 2 there) makes his TDM system sound just fine. Really sweet, really pro......It should be noted, however, that he is not using the mix buss in PT world, but bringing stems out to a Mackie D8b. That still seems to be the key: summing it externally......Anyway, the Canadian branch of Universal that his daughter is on was pretty freaked out by how good it sounded. I was thoroughly impressed myself.

Soundcraft: That mixer (a 600B I bought in 1985) probably only has a market value of $500. or most likely less. Amazing. I sold it with all the patchbays and direct out mods for $1,100. around 1999 or 2000, then bought all the patchbays, cabling and external direct out amps back for something like $500-$600........I have an open search function on ebay for Soundcraft stuff, and am always anguishing about whether I should buy one of the boards that comes up, but haven't gotten the courage to do it yet.....Listening to that old Stanley Turrentine album of mine that I was talking about in the earlier post has really gotten me I did a little acoustic, non digital sound job about a month ago that reawakened something in me......I don't know........I can't give up the automation, and my DM2000 sounds great and is capable of a bigger sound than that 600B, but I am definitely thinking things through yet again...

My fond remembrances are always chastened by the looming maintenance issues with analogue consoles....aargh!

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:14 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.1
Copyright ©2009 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
The contents of this forum are copyrighted by Micro Technology Unlimited, 2000-2008. Use of any material from these Forums is prohibited without written agreement from MTU.