Just in case you\'ve not subscribed to the sonorus user mailing list, here is a quite informative e-mail by Mark Clayton:
You’ve never asked me any questions about Sonorus!
This forum is the Sonorus user list, not a platform for us to wave the flag or promote Sonorus in general (for that, check out the web site). If anyone has a specific (or even a general) question for us, it should not be sent to the user list, but to firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org or to any of our staff individually.
Sonorus went through a change of management in January of this year, where one of the three original founders resigned. Since then, I have had to make some tough decisions about the future plans for the company, because the path the company was on was, frankly, not working. MEDI/O was vapor for almost a year and was not going to be able to meet its price targets. AES/8 was many months late. STUDI/O was languishing. Other new products were stalled in development.
In February, I made the decision to not release MEDI/O in its present form. I asked this list in February for comments about my MEDI/O plans, so this shouldn’t be anything new.
After many delays, AES/8 is now in production. We’ll announce when it ships later this month, but until then, there’s nothing new to report.
We’ve also come to an important strategic relationship with Swissonic AG. Swissonic was the manufacturer for the Sonorus AD/24 and DA/24 converter boxes, but we did not have access to the other Swissonic products. Now, Sonorus is the North American distributor for all Swissonic products. This includes their AD96 and DA96 96 kHz converters (under $1000 MSRP) and the USB Studio. Compare the USB Studio to MEDI/O. It doesn’t have the ADAT or MIDI, but it does have a lot going for it: 1U rack mount with real knobs and meters, 20 bit performance (MEDI/O was 16 bits), and it doesn’t even take up a PCI slot. And USB Studio is in stock, available TODAY for the PC and the Mac.
In January, I fixed the production problems with STUDI/O so since then, our dealers and distributors have had an uninterrupted supply of product, and this should continue into the future. We are also working on a wholesale price reduction that would hopefully result in a permanent drop in the “street” price of STUDI/O. Our new manufacturing partners are also building a much higher quality product.
On the software front, since this year we’ve added AudioX support (it’s in the Win2000/NT release and the Win98 beta now). and thanks to some super work from Joe, we now have Gigasampler/GSIF support working in beta. And more importantly, I’ve given priority to many long-standing bugs and quirks with STUDI/O which have almost all been addressed. Things like multi-CPU support in NT/2000, Cubase/MIDI timing under ASIO2, and (as of last week) a fix for a quirk in Intel 820 chipset motherboards under Windows 98. Last year, Sonorus made the mistake of releasing ‘retrograde’ upgrades that may have fixed some problems but introduced others. I don’t want that to happen ever again, so our releases are undergoing more testing than before. We’ve also got the Windows 2000 driver completely plug-and-play, and STUDI/O has built-in support under BeOS 5.0! We’ve taken an ultra-conservative approach with the Mac G4, because early users were having problems. At this point, our testing with our own G4/450 and testing with our partners at Apple, Steinberg and Emagic have verified that STUDI/O works with the existing driver, although we are still suspicious of some of the first-run G4’s and PCI bus incompatibilities. That’s why the Hardware Alert on our web site still stands.
I’m trying to repair some of the damage to our reputation by not announcing anything that we’re not prepared to deliver on. But since we’re “among friends”, here are a few of the things we’re planning:
Major website revamp, including an on-line store for products and accessories. We’ll be making the changes incrementally, so please forgive the occasional glitch.
Opening the beta software releases to all.
Open-sourcing the STUDI/O Linux driver.
There will be a product from the ashes of MEDI/O. We may announce it at the summer NAMM show, but don’t hold me to it. But when we announce it, it will be for real, and I think you all will like it!
We’re exploring technologies like USB and 1394/MLan and we’ll have major announcements in the fall that address the confluence of PC’s and multichannel digital audio, regardless of the format.
STUDI/O will be continuously upgraded but no replacement for it is planned. STUDI/O’s driver stability, software support, hardware flexibility and high quality and compatibility will continue to increase. We’ll also try to make it slightly more affordable.
So, the situation at Sonorus continues to improve, and I apologize if my lack of communication has given anyone the wrong idea about the current state of the company or our future plans. Feel free to contact me privately if you like by email or phone. Just keep in mind that although we host this user list, we don’t supervise the content. I read every message, and if I’m asked personally to respond I will, but this is your forum, not mine.
At 12:45 PM 5/2/00, Gary Howard wrote:
I hate to be a doubter, but where is the Sonorus input. I’m really not so
much interested in what others have to say about Sonorus’ well-being. I know
that they canceled their only new sound card offering in several years (the
MEDI/O) and haven’t announced any new development plans. Additionally, they
have not responded to my inquiries about company direction, goals, new
products, etc. I want to hear something from the top, like from one of the