Tascam US-800 (8 Inputs simultaneously)

How to use MultiTrack DAW
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Posts: 1130
Joined: Mon Aug 17, 2009 9:41 pm
PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 1:20 pm
UPDATE: Due to some users having issues with iOS5.0.1, this interface is no longer recommended. Tascam seems to be ignoring the product, and still hasn't updated the mac/pc drivers and firmware to fix other problems. The Lexicon Omega is a better choice and still gives 4 inputs. And you can't go wrong with the Fireface UCX, which also gives 8 inputs simultaneously.


It's possible to record 8 separate inputs simultaneously with MultiTrack DAW on an iPad. You'll need the Camera Connection Kit from Apple to supply the USB connection for the audio interface.

You'll also need iOS5 or later on your iPad for recording 8 tracks at once.

The Tascam US-800 works great and has low noise:

http://tascam.com/product/us-800/

us-800_front2.jpg
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us-800_rear2.jpg
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The unit has 6 phantom powered mic inputs, and 2 digital inputs for a total of 8.

Thats 8 mono tracks or 4 stereo tracks or any combination of mono and stereo. The only constraint is that stereo tracks are paired to sets of 2 contiguous mono tracks. i.e:

Stereo A uses Mono 1 and Mono 2
Stereo B uses Mono 3 and Mono 4
Stereo C uses Mono 5 and Mono 6
Stereo D uses Mono 7 and Mono 8

When you plug the Tascam US-800 into the Camera Connection Kit, you should get a popup for a second which displays some info on the new hardware:
Screenshot 2011.10.27 08.48.44.png
Screenshot 2011.10.27 08.48.44.png (8.84 KiB) Viewed 19164 times


(8x2) means that eight inputs and 2 outputs are detected and working.

To select which inputs are used for a track, use the spinner control on the large Arm button:
Screenshot 2011.12.17 14.51.22.png
Screenshot 2011.12.17 14.51.22.png (14.75 KiB) Viewed 19164 times

This spinner control will scroll through all the possible inputs available when the interface is connected and working. The possible inputs with this hardware configuration are:
Mono 1,
Mono 2,
Mono 3,
Mono 4,
Mono 5,
Mono 6,
Mono 7,
Mono 8,
Stereo A,
Stereo B,
Stereo C,
Stereo D

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Joined: Sat Oct 03, 2009 1:25 pm
Location: Nashville, TN
PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 3:55 am
OH MY!

Posts: 30
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2011 2:16 am
PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:59 pm
Great news! Wonder what the limit could be. 16? 24?

I wonder why they (Tascam) didn't decide on having the digital-in as an option alongside with an extra pair of analog inputs. I don't use any instruments with digital output. Seems like it will in many cases be limited to 6 tracks. What instruments are out there with this output (except from maybe computers)? Microphone with digital output? Converter: analog-to-digital? Does the Itouch have a digital output?

Anyway. With a 4 to 8 track option I just might upgrade from my Itouch to an Ipad to be able to record stereo piano+singing+stereo drums or something like that.
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Posts: 1130
Joined: Mon Aug 17, 2009 9:41 pm
PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 1:13 am
As a limit, a back of the envelope calculation:
USB 1 fullspeed at 12 mbps (1.5 MBps)
Mono track LPCM data rate at 88.2 KBps
1.5 / 0.0882 = 17
So a theoretical maximum with a fully saturated USB bus gives 17 mono tracks in and out.
There is some overhead to the USB protocol, packet headers, bit stuffing, zerobit insertion, etc., so maybe we can get 15 tracks total. It's probably unrealistic to expect a company to make this, though, because the unit needs to work on a shared bus with other equipment. It's possible a company made a unit with 10 inputs and 2 outs, or possibly 8 inputs and 4 or 5 outs (surround). Yet to see one though, any newer unit will probably be usb2.0 and have a reduced 1.0 implementation.

Maybe something like this will work to provide another set of Analog inputs
http://intrl.startech.com/AV/Converters ... r~AA2SPDIF

Posts: 30
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2011 2:16 am
PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:30 am
...So maybe stepping up to Tascam US-1800 would be more futureproof (16 inputs) with little extra cost? ...But not that portable. (And maybe not standalone as mic pre-amp.) Still enjoy mono on my Itouch.

Note: Tascam US-1800 is not tested as far as I know. Just so people don't think that this post was a confirmation for US-1800.

Posts: 16
Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2011 12:00 pm
PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 11:21 am
pwnified wrote:As a limit, a back of the envelope calculation:
USB 1 fullspeed at 12 mbps (1.5 MBps)
Mono track LPCM data rate at 88.2 KBps
1.5 / 0.0882 = 17
So a theoretical maximum with a fully saturated USB bus gives 17 mono tracks in and out.
There is some overhead to the USB protocol, packet headers, bit stuffing, zerobit insertion, etc., so maybe we can get 15 tracks total. It's probably unrealistic to expect a company to make this, though, because the unit needs to work on a shared bus with other equipment. It's possible a company made a unit with 10 inputs and 2 outs, or possibly 8 inputs and 4 or 5 outs (surround). Yet to see one though, any newer unit will probably be usb2.0 and have a reduced 1.0 implementation.

Maybe something like this will work to provide another set of Analog inputs
http://intrl.startech.com/AV/Converters ... r~AA2SPDIF


From what I have read at the Tascam site, the US-800 IS usb2 already.....

refer to this product list: http://tascam.com/applications/recordin ... interface/

Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Oct 26, 2011 1:03 pm
PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 2:44 pm
It does seem a shame to have a great (24) track DAW in your hand and a glaring lack of interfaces... :shock:

Posts: 16
Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2011 12:00 pm
PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2011 6:23 pm
Hi all,

Have not posted anything extra as I ha d nothing to report, but I now have the US800 here...Now I can get to some serious testing...

Will actually be using the system next week to do a "shed" recording (multi-track) of the band I manage. It's a new young originals band...we are doing it (the recording), more for the guys to "hear" themselves, but if it works out okay we may even post MP3 demos onto a Facebook site...err that is when they can come up with a bloody name!!!!!! LOL!!

If HD can get the MT running for eight input tracks...wow....could almost do a live gig with that. And all on the old iPad!!! Amazing.

Cheers
Dennis

Posts: 30
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2011 2:16 am
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 1:57 am
Just wondering if US-800 supports midi fully for Ixxx. I read something about "Core MIDI" that I think Line 6 included in their latest dock-gadget. Is core midi something else than normal midi?

Any report on the stand alone mode for US-800. It could be great to use it as a simple mixer towards the stereo without the Ixxx connected.

Posts: 16
Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2011 12:00 pm
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 2:06 am
Core Midi, is simply the full set of MIDI instructions embedded in iOS 4 and 5. Any class compliant device is automatically recognised by the iPod, pretty much the same way they are recognised in Mac OSX..no drivers needed all part of the OS.

That is my understanding, but not being an expert, I might have some of that wrong....

Now while the US800 IS usb2, it is also fully class compliant under the midi 1.1 spec...so what we get is a device that is recognised by the iPad, and because it is also usb2, we get multiple simulataneous recording tracks.

The Alesis Multimix o.t.o.h, is usb2, but it is no longer 1.1 class compliant and as such is not a recognised device on the iPad. AFAIK, the usb 2 spec has not achieved class status as yet....

The whole Line 6 MIDI Mobilizer thing is a bit of a scam really...at first it was the only device as there was no core midi, and developers had to sign up to Line 6 to get the codes to embed in their app to use the mobilizer.

Where the "dodge" is, is the Line 6 have now released Mobilizer II which IS core midi compliant, but all the poor old mobilizer I owners got left in the dark...no firmware no nothing..so all THEY can use are those apps approved by Line 6.....or sell it off and be forced to by model II..

This is why having class compliant devices takes all the monopoly out of it!!!
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