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Microsound Workstation Open Forum General postings about Microsound workstations.

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Old November 28th, 2000, 06:11 AM
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MTU no longer offers SCSI drives for our audio workstations for three reasons:

1. Today, no one is willing to pay the difference in price. A 45GB UDMA/100 IDE drive costs less than a high speed SCSI controller card, not to mention the SCSI drive price.

2. Today, the performance of IDE drives has proven to be more than adequate for Microeditor' multi-track audio production work. Our testing showed that a 7,200rpm UDMA/100 IDE drive could sustain transfers of up to 28 stereo files for live overlap mixing without fades or gains. The Krystal DSP is capable of live mixing up to 17 stereo segments with fades and gains.

3. Today, the difficulties of installing and making an "optional" SCSI hard drive work along with all the other devices that are "required" has exceeded our pain threshold! IDE drives are painless to install and maintain. With SCSI, when a client wipes out their system by installing the latest Windows or installing any other software (yes, it can happen!), they call MTU for free help to diagnose the problem and rebuild over the phone. The hours this can take with SCSI has contributed to this decision.

Remarkably, MTU still provides free support! Now, if we charged $180/hr or $1,500/yr for support like our competitors, it would be a different story. We would gladly offer SCSI to run up our income from support charges. Does any of this make sense? Our responsibility is to get our clients running with a Microeditor workstation... and keep them running. SCSI has no part in fulfilling our self-imposed responsibility to our clients.

In my 30 years experience (as President of Technology Unlimited Inc, and now Micro Technology Unlimited) in computer based product design, I have evolved to disliking the latest and greatest. As state of the art designers, my engineering teams have operated at - and even advanced - the bleeding-edge of technology too often. In June, 1973 we were the first in the world to develop the open-architecture microcomputer workstation: Our other firsts can be found at:

I can state first hand who suffers with the newest and fastest hard drive or CDR or motherboard, or CPU processor when it is "shipping" but not fully debugged - the buyer! MTU's main focus is to keep our clients running! When we use a new drive and it malperforms, we let our clients down. Earlier this year, we replaced 5 Yamaha CDR drives in the field at our expense (we used Yamahas for over 5 years). In 1998, after a respected client "pushed" us to using the fastest IDE drive on his system, we ended up replacing 4 in the field, including installing the operating system and all other software before shipping them to the clients; all at our expense including freight. Thus, we no longer jump on the hottest thing out of the door. Our clients don't require it to get their work done, and we are no longer willing to pay the bill for what amounts to as ego trips to have the "hottest item".

One client is ready to buy a 15,000rpm Cheeta SCSI hard drive and ultra-fast SCSI controller, but is asking MTU to quote upgrading his computer using ancient AT technology because a new ATX rack case is too expensive. Sorry, the logic fails me here! AT motherboards are a thing of the past. Yes, we might be able to stick one in his AT case, and for the next 6 months he might be OK. However, within the next 2 years (and clients keep MTU systems a long time) he WILL have at least one killer limitation. Give us the freedom to upgrade with modern ATX. The 7,200rpm IDE drive we now use will not limit Microeditor or Karaoke Pro.
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