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Topic: External PCI expansion and DAW's

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  1. #1

    External PCI expansion and DAW\'s

    Does anyone know how good the performance is of the PCI slots in some of the external PCI expansion systems like the one at this link:
    www.sparcproductdirectory.com/pcibox1.html

    I am out of PCI slots but would still like to expand further. Are these systems viable for a DAW? Is anyone using such a system?

    Laurence Kingston

  2. #2

    Re: External PCI expansion and DAW\'s

    Here\'s another site fire external PCI expanders:
    www.magma.com

    Laurence Kingston

  3. #3

    Re: External PCI expansion and DAW\'s

    Hmmm.. with the pricetag like this, I\'d rather buy new PC... I don\'t see a point of slamming alot of cards into one system.

  4. #4

    Re: External PCI expansion and DAW\'s

    Apparently, all the PCI slots in this expansion chassis share the same IRQ
    as the slot they are derived from. Basically they are just bridged PCI
    slots. The systems are mainly sold to Digidesign users. What I would want
    to do is to put two DSP Factories, two AX44\'s, A Frontier Dakota and a
    Frontier Montanna in the expansion box. That\'s six cards total. The DSP
    Factories share IRQ\'s fine as long as you use the latest drivers. The
    Dakota is supposed to share its IRQ as well, though I haven\'t actually tried
    this. The Montanna and the AX44\'s don\'t use IRQ\'s. Theoretically at least,
    it should work. The reason I want to do this is so that I can have 32
    channels of Gigasampler (from the Frontier cards) looped back into the DSP
    Factories through the AX44\'s and running under C-Consoles control. I am
    already running 16 channels of Gigasampler this way and it works great. I
    just don\'t have the available expansion slots in my PC to go the rest of the
    way. It should work, but I\'d love to know for sure before I shell out the $
    that this system will cost.


    One more thing: I\'ve been told that inititially Gigastudio will not do 32 channels through the GSIF of the Combined Frontier Dakota and Montanna cards, but that eventially the drivers will be enhanced to the point where they can use the GSIF outputs of two compatible cards, so I probably won\'t be rushing out to do this anytime soon. Still I would like to know more about these systems. Gigasampler looped back from the Dakota to the DSP Factory and mixed under C-Console absolutely rocks! If I could do 32 channels instead of 16 this way it would be well worth the inflated cost of one of these boxes.

    Initially, the $1,500 to $2,000 pricetag for these systems looks crazy, but usinc CNET, you can find an Aurora version for around $800. That still seems pretty expensive for as little as it actually is. On the other hand, I really want 32 C-Console channels of Gigastudio pretty bad. Think about it: Gigastudio permanently patched into a 48 channel board with four multieffects processors available, four band parametrics and dynamics processors on each channel. All this hidden away in one box. If you ask me, this is as close to a perfect system as you can get!

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