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Posted on Sat, Dec 20 2014 04:24
by jmaryn
Joined on Sat, Dec 21 2002, Posts 16

Hi all,

A year ago, I began to upgrade a Mac Pro 2010 for the purpose of eventually using it as a VSL VE Pro slave, with an iMac as the main DAW. Currently I have four 7200 rpm SATA drives in the computer. The BlackMagic speed test is not terribly impressive on these HD drives. The weak link with this Mac is the USB 2.0 and Firewrite outputs—SLOW. I did buy a SATA PCIe card. So, the machine is still capable as a standalone VSL workstation, or with VE Pro. I use both the Mac Pro and iMac for a ton of all kinds of work., including music, video, and "work" work, not just music. The iMac is also capable but with limited internal storage.

Been too busy and havent't done much with this project, but I am again looking at my options. First thought—upgrade the internal HDs to SSD of the Mac Pro 2010 for use as a slave for VSL and other libraries—inking to VE Pro. SSDs are the major expense here.

Then an "a ha" moment ...

Instead of using a computer as an external VE Pro slave, can I use an external Thunderbolt (1 or 2) drive enclosure (4 bays) with either standard HDs or SSDs connected to the principal iMac DAW? Does the Mac Pro slave or external-drive bay make more sense for VSL library sample loading and workflow?

How would you vote on the following?

MAC PRO 2010 as VE Pro Slave; Mac OS on one of the drives configured as:  (1) four 7200 HDs; (2) four SSDs; (3) two HDs plus 2 SSDs, or ...

IMac as master DAW, with OS and apps on internal drive connected to (4) external 4-drive bay with Thunderbolt 1 or 2; (5) either all 7200 HDs or SSDs or mixed; (6) flexibility of using two HDs for production, and two SSDs for VSL libraries; and (7) flexibility of daisy chaining additional Thunderbolt drives for produciton, backup, and streaming other libraries. ADVANTAGE: smaller, more portable, doesn't require second computer.

Of course, RAIDing any of these options would work but do I need to RAID for sample-library loading of VSL?

Make sense? Which solution would you use? OWC is one vendor who makes the drive enclosures and the SSDs. Angelbird & Samsung also for SSDs.

Thanks, everyone.

John

Posted on Tue, Jan 13 2015 23:11
by jmaryn
Joined on Sat, Dec 21 2002, Posts 16

Well, I'll find out. Just upgraded to a Thunderbolt 4-Drive bay with standard 7200 rpms. Will run it in RAID 5. SSDs are a bit too expensive and will have to wait. Also upgraded VSL to the Complete Special Editions (nice deal until Jan 15, two days from now) and VE Pro 5.

I suspect I didn't filter in the RAM issues and processing requirements of a single CPU vs two CPUs. Whatever.

Busy at work and so it may take a while for me to figure this out. Will let you know.

John

Posted on Thu, Jan 15 2015 08:43
by johnstaf
Joined on Thu, Apr 21 2011, EI, Posts 198

I think this is the kind of thing that could work very well for one user and not another. Some instruments, such as Vienna Instruments, are very light on resources, but when you load a lot of them, and use MIR Pro, computing power can become an issue.

Cubase (OS agnostic). Various VSL bits and pieces.

Posted on Thu, Jan 15 2015 15:50
by jmaryn
Joined on Sat, Dec 21 2002, Posts 16

Thanks Johnstaf,

I think you are right. I was thinking only of fast loading of samples from multiple drives and not the total cpu power needed for large orchestral templates or reverb. I am not using MIR but will use MIRx and that will play into this as I learn. Maybe a combination of new multiple drives or SSDs Thanks, Johnstaf..

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