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Topic: Software VS Hardware

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Niceville, Florida

    Software VS Hardware

    I'm sure this has been discussed before but I've got a simple question...why on earth would anyone buy a product such as the Korg Oasys now an days? It has what..600 MEGABYTES of samples...while Colussus has 32 GIGABYTES. I actually own a Korg KARMA, and the reason I bought it was because I didnt have a good computer, so I guess not having a computer could be the only reason. But otherwise I dont understand how instruments like the Oasys, the motif, Triton, Roland XV series, ext even have a chance. Can someone explain?

  2. #2

    Re: Software VS Hardware

    Hardware ...
    - uses its own processing which saves power in the computer and provides more polyphony with less sync problems.
    - as good as never hang or f**ks up thing with programs and saved work.
    - delivers more direct access to parameters and adjustments
    - can be used for live performance more conveniently (as opposed to setting up your PC on stage).

    The guy who did music for "Chicken run" .. gah, can't remember his name ... Greg something ... he uses very little software sound resources. Instead, he still uses a setup of about 30 Roland S-760 hardware samplers, all connected to his sequencer. He claims it is much more stable than software.

    Many soundmodules, take Roland XV or fantom series as an example, delivers sounds with better "direct use" quality then I have heard in nearly any software library out there.

    Those are some advantages that hardware still has over software. But we are in a time of turmoil. Things are turning more towards software use. But before the software times, as recently as 5 years ago, many composers was all into hardware, because that was were all the sound resources were back then. Software sound resources in a computer is quite new from that perspective.
    Kid: When I become an adult I wanna be a musician.
    Parent: Son, you cannot become both.

  3. #3

    Re: Software VS Hardware

    software is just another tool there are upsides and downsides.
    i never had to reboot my roland xv5080 becuase or driver issues!

  4. #4

    Re: Software VS Hardware

    I have to agree with the initial poster. While hardware is useful if you're doing live recording (obviously), if you're doing all your sound generation from your computer, it's very easy and cost-effective to do without it. Why buy a Triton when you can get SampleTank 2 for 1/10 the price, which has several GB more samples? Why buy a Novation K-Station when you could get the VST (V-Station) for much less, and it sounds the same? It's a mystery to me, really.

  5. #5

    Re: Software VS Hardware

    Quote Originally Posted by zircon_st
    Why buy a Triton when you can get SampleTank 2 for 1/10 the price, which has several GB more samples? Why buy a Novation K-Station when you could get the VST (V-Station) for much less, and it sounds the same? It's a mystery to me, really.
    And you can use several instances of the plugin simultaneously.

  6. #6

    Re: Software VS Hardware

    In a professional or home studio setup, there is no advantage to using hardware keyboards or samplers. On a live playing engagement some people may find it to be more convenient to use a hardware keyboard as opposed to taking a computer, though many are using laptops these days on live performance gigs.

    Kip McGinnis
    Bardstown Audio

  7. #7

    Re: Software VS Hardware

    Well.. right, for performance, a hardware synth might make a lot more sense. I guess I'm referring to studio work only, which is what the larger market is, I'd imagine.

    The one hardware company that knows what they're doing is Access, with their new TI line.

  8. #8

    Re: Software VS Hardware

    Plus, you have to factor in good old inertia. The notion of using a pc as a synth as opposed to a hardware keyboard just takes some work to wrap your head around for some people. I plan to do some gigs later this year and I want to use all my softsynths but I'm still a bit paranoid about taking them live. I'd like to be able to have a whole second redundant system on standby but I'm not sure I can afford it. Also, I guess I'll have to look into the issues of getting additional licenses for everything.

    But I agree, when you look into it it seems almost impossible to find justifications to use hardware over software these days.

  9. #9

    Re: Software VS Hardware

    Many of the best, most musical sounds (not including orchestral) are still only available in hardware form. Probably because of the compelling piracy issue with software solutions. M-Audio made a wise decision when they predicted the explosive growth of software-based studios, and commenced manufacturing of an entire range of USB Midi Controllers. Should have had my stocks in M-Audio

  10. #10
    Senior Member Bruce A. Richardson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 1999
    Dallas, Texas

    Re: Software VS Hardware

    Don't be paranoid about a PC on stage. Just work out the kinks and set up a roadworthy rig. It's actually very easy, and I guarantee you it takes very little more energy to set up than any other keyboard rig. You just need to do it in the most effective way. I've been using soft-synths exclusively on stage since 2000...and I have literally had only one problem, and it was caused 100% by my own stupidity. I replaced a drive, and wasn't careful putting the drive cage back into the machine and pinched (and shorted a couple of the wires within) a drive ribbon cable. Even at that, the machine worked unless it was hitting that drive, and I got through the gig using Reaktor for everything instead of using my usual combo of Giga and Reaktor.

    I wouldn't go back for anything.

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