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2nd computer as a VST host

Plug-in hosts and other software applications discussion

Moderator: Moderators (Main)

rgemmell
KVRer
 
9 posts since 22 Dec, 2011

Postby rgemmell; Mon Jan 07, 2013 3:48 pm 2nd computer as a VST host

I have a 4 year old Macbook Pro I've been using for work. The machine has Logic Pro on it that I've never used. It has 4 GB memory and a small internal drive but I can fire-wire a bigger 7200 rpm drive. I guess that makes for an ok system but the machine is getting old. I play classical piano and will want to do lots of heavy VSTs i.e. grand piano, orchestral etc.

I was an old Opcode Vision user which is now gone away. I'm not new to music production but I'm new to all the current products including Logic so I'm not committed to anything. Learning curve matters...I don't want to use the most complex product.

One strategy is I could host Logic on the laptop and network a second Windows machine as a heavy duty VST host. What do you think of this strategy? I recall a product called FXTeleport (maybe there are others). Any compatibility issues networking a Windows VST host with a Mac DAW host?

The other approach would be to just chuck the Macbook (give it to my daughter) and go buy twice the Windows machine for half the price. This would then lead me into something like Digital Performer (now that it's on Windows) or Studio One (maybe even a reincarnation of Tracktion?) with a lower cost heavy duty computer that can handle all the VSTs I want. BTW, I don't mean to set off a Windows vs. Mac thing...truth is, I'm more comfortable with Windows than the Mac OS. It's just personal preference but I will have trouble bringing myself to buy another high-priced Mac.

Thanks for any thoughts!
scalawag
KVRist
 
417 posts since 3 May, 2004

Postby scalawag; Mon Jan 07, 2013 4:09 pm

http://code.google.com/p/wormhole2/
I had some successful tests in the past with it.
jancivil
KVRAF
 
9444 posts since 20 Oct, 2007

Postby jancivil; Mon Jan 07, 2013 6:18 pm

http://www.vsl.co.at/en/211/497/1685/1990/1680.htm

the idea of hosting the instruments - and the fx - as a different process or better yet on a different machine is tried and true. this one transcends the bit kernel and OS platform issues at once, is stable and is the most efficient. additionally jitter free etc. whatever config you wind up with using this makes the most out of your resources.

you might want to look at http://www.vsl.co.at/en/65/71/2536/2186.vsl, particularly Blake Neely who talks about his setup in the most detail.
docdued
KVRian
 
603 posts since 2 Apr, 2005, from out there

Postby docdued; Tue Jan 08, 2013 6:17 am

I'd go the second route... yes, you probably CAN do it with that Vienna solution but it's already at € 235, and I can't believe it's always totally hassle free. Buy a Windows PC (you get insanely powerful machines for € 300-400 already), maybe add an ASIO soundcard (or use ASIO4ALL), install Reaper for $60 as a host and you'll be good to go.
jancivil
KVRAF
 
9444 posts since 20 Oct, 2007

Postby jancivil; Tue Jan 08, 2013 12:25 pm

it's not totally hassle-free for every user, nor is any host. it requires a certain amount of machine to run and it doesn't support older OSes. one has to know to use static IP... there are a couple of things to understand.

it is entirely hassle-free here. it is however geared for people that require heavy virtual instrument use.
I play classical piano and will want to do lots of heavy VSTs i.e. grand piano, orchestral etc.

as an empirical matter, one will not be nearly *as* 'good to go' with a DAW as the one host as with hosting in this. It bridges there is no concern about 32 vs 64-bit, its latency compensation is amazing; you can add buffers in the server that do not add lag. you can determine the amount of cores per instance according to what you expect the load to be...

a look around this forum and you see people with all the machine in the world talking about 'freezing' their instruments. I haven't done since I'm using this.
rgemmell
KVRer
 
9 posts since 22 Dec, 2011

Postby rgemmell; Tue Jan 08, 2013 3:57 pm

Thanks for the great suggestions.

I assume I could of course not host the Mac VSTs included in Logic 9 (like ESX24, Sculpture, etc.) on a Windows machine, correct?

So the Mac VSTs would stay on the fire-wire drive attached to the Mac Pro hosting Logic?

I appreciate the attraction of just getting a really powerful Windows machine and chucking the whole Mac approach. I used to hear horror stories about weird sound card issues with Windows systems but I assume that is much less common now. I am a university professor and can get educational discounts on everything (SW/HW). The Apple discounts are ok but the bloody Mac Pros are still quite expensive.
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digitalboytn
KVRian
 
650 posts since 7 Dec, 2008, from Global Cowboy

Postby digitalboytn; Tue Jan 08, 2013 4:55 pm

PCs and Macs are essentially the same hardware these days but Apple has HUGE profits and those profits don't come from nowhere :wink:

That's why so many guys are running Hackintosh systems these days..

One of the things I like about PCs is that you can make the machine exactly how you want it...You can't so that so easily with a Mac..

Also - the price is so much lower for the same hardware !

You can just get a hub and run everything over LAN but you would need a separate audio interface for the slave DAW...

I use MIDI over LAN (http://www.nerds.de/en/ipmidi.html) and it works great...

The main event is running inside the primary DAW and the extra instruments are inside the slave computer....

Perfect :wink:
Jesse J
KVRist
 
324 posts since 2 Oct, 2002, from Finland, Europe

Postby Jesse J; Tue Jan 08, 2013 5:16 pm

i use CopperLan and run a simple 2-chan USB interface outs from my PC to my Mac audio interface (Focusrite Saffire Pro 40 + ADA8000 = 16 inputs)

Run Logic/Numerology as sequencers on main Mac and two slave machines (macbook and PC) this way, plus a lot of outboard hardware. CopperLan takes care of all MIDI via Lan.

and did I mention it's free?
docdued
KVRian
 
603 posts since 2 Apr, 2005, from out there

Postby docdued; Tue Jan 08, 2013 11:25 pm

If you want to keep your Logic VSTs then you will have to keep using Logic, that's right. But how about this: you're gonna need that Windows machine anyway, for both solutions. So get one, install a VST host (Reaper with it's generous demo license would be a good choice...) and see if that setup fits your needs in terms of being able to run the heavy-duty instruments you want to play. If yes, fine, if not, proceed with the Mac-Windows-solution.
C-note
KVRian
 
1438 posts since 2 Apr, 2006, from Studio City, California

Postby C-note; Wed Jan 09, 2013 3:47 pm

By definition you would not want to use Reaper. Reaper + Midi = insanity. Get VSL Pro, it works and you can use it MAC+PC/PC+MAC on any major DAW
Throbert
KVRian
 
527 posts since 29 Nov, 2008, from Denver CO USA

Postby Throbert; Wed Jan 09, 2013 4:29 pm

Audio port and midi over lan, don't know if it would work with copper lan but cool if it does.
A minor scale is a major scale starting 3 half steps down from the major and visa versa. Any Chord has as many versions as it has notes.
metamorphosis
KVRAF
 
3419 posts since 7 Jan, 2005, from Hamilton, New Zealand

Postby metamorphosis; Wed Jan 09, 2013 5:06 pm

rgemmell wrote:One strategy is I could host Logic on the laptop and network a second Windows machine as a heavy duty VST host. What do you think of this strategy? I recall a product called FXTeleport (maybe there are others). Any compatibility issues networking a Windows VST host with a Mac DAW host?


I don't think they ever came up with a Mac vesion of FX teleport, but that would be what you would want, unfortunately.
Wormhole is OK but you have to set it up every time, from memory - you can't just save the settings in your project and have them reload on the slave machine when you reopen that project, as it does with FX teleport.

Your other option is Reaper, which includes the Reamote plugin which does exactly the same thing as FX teleport (but probably better).

Reaper isn't too far away from logic audio, interface-wise (at least the older versions of logic), so you may feel right at home there.
XP/Vista/Win7/Win8 Optimisation, DAW Tips, AudioXP - XPFree
I made an oddly-acoustic album and an electronica thing and an alt-metal doohicky...
rgemmell
KVRer
 
9 posts since 22 Dec, 2011

Postby rgemmell; Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:11 pm

C-note wrote:By definition you would not want to use Reaper. Reaper + Midi = insanity. Get VSL Pro, it works and you can use it MAC+PC/PC+MAC on any major DAW


Thanks to everyone for your thoughts.

So, it looks like VSL Pro sends audio over ethernet? They call it a midi AND audio LAN - so more than just networking midi data.

It's a little expensive but would avoid routing audio back from the VST host sound card and they throw in their Epic Orchestra samples.

From their web site:

"You can easily route the audio streams of a whole arsenal of computers back to your main machine without the need of external hardware."
c_huelsbeck
KVRist
 
355 posts since 22 Feb, 2001, from San Rafael, California

Postby c_huelsbeck; Tue Jan 22, 2013 11:18 pm

Vienna Ensemble Pro definitely gets my vote as the best solution to host plugins on another computer! The process is very transparent and easy: you open the VePro Plugin in your host and connect to the server running on the other PC (or Mac) over Ethernet. The host transmits midi over the network to the server, the plugins over there generate their sounds and send the audio back to the host - it could not be easier! The server computer doesn't even need a sound card and if you want to save even more hardware, you could connect to it via remote desktop / VNC, then you don't even need a monitor or keyboard/mouse for the server.

The only little downside is that it creates a bit of additional latency (about 2 buffer sizes), so if you want a tight response for live playing, your host needs to be able to run at a small buffer size (256 / 6ms or faster), otherwise it could feel a bit sluggish.

They have a fully functional demo for download, but I think you'll need a spare e-licenser (formerly known as Syncrosoft dongle or Steinberg Key) for the server part.

-Chris
jancivil
KVRAF
 
9444 posts since 20 Oct, 2007

Postby jancivil; Wed Jan 23, 2013 1:38 am

rgemmell wrote:I assume I could of course not host the Mac VSTs included in Logic 9 (like ESX24, Sculpture, etc.) on a Windows machine, correct?
those are not vsts at all, those are AUs aka .component. They will not install on a windows machine, you would have to find vst (.dll) builds of any AU.
Last edited by jancivil on Wed Jan 23, 2013 1:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
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