Re: Need soundcard advice

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I also suggest getting a USB audio interface to ensure you will be able
to use your device with any computer you might get in the future. Plenty
of laptops do not have any spare PCIe slots, but they have USB ports. If
your wife ever want to use the interface for a live performance, I doubt
she'll want to lug around a desktop PC for a PCIe card.

By "Midi feature of that card [Audigy 2]", are you only referring to
SoundFont support or are you also talking about MIDI I/O with a breakout
box? Is SoundFont support by the hardware critical? Can Fluidsynth
substitute for that?

I have been doing a lot of digging over the last few days to figure out
what USB audio interface to get for my own use (just DJing for now). It
seems to me that the Focusrite Scarlett series is the way to go. The
hardware is good and Focusrite is cooperative with Linux driver
). Every review I have read says they have great sound quality. There
are a handful of devices in this series with different numbers of ins
and outs, so buy whichever one best suits your needs and budget. Beware
that some people run into issues using an electric guitar without a DI
box, so if recording guitar is important, investigate if this is an
issue with the particular unit you're considering. All of them except
the 2i2 have MIDI I/O. The 2i2 and 2i4 are powered by USB, and the rest
need their own power supply. They all are capable of operating with 24
bit samples at 96 kHz, have at least 2 mic preamps, and have balanced
outputs. It seems that playback and recording have been supported by
Linux for a while. Full control over the devices' mixers will be
included in Linux 3.19 (the next release--note that it will be a little
bit before this is packaged by Fedora; 3.18 is still in rawhide).

On 12/30/2014 03:10 AM, Brian Monroe wrote:
> Personally I would go with an external USB card. Pretty common with
> most modern home studio setups.
> Most of them will work, you'll just want something that has midi out. 
> I'm pretty sure the sound card doesn't have separate memory for sound
> fonts. I think that's all loaded in the system memory. 
> Any of the cards listed
> here:
> will probably work. 
> The key words you can look for are "class compliant" to ensure that
> you won't have any issues with drivers. That being said: Behringer
> will probably give you the most bang for the buck,  Lexicon I know for
> sure works and is one of the cheapest. Prosonus, Avid, Focusrite are
> all pretty well known standards. I'm 90% sure it's going to work on
> 99% of all of those brands devices. 
> Be careful with M-Audio. Some of their firmware in the past has been
> proprietary and has a few more steps to setup. (though I think there
> were drivers or patches available last time I checked for most stuff,
> just not as easy as everything else. Safe to think of them as the
> broadcom and nvidia of audio cards) 
> Mark of the Unicorn (MOTU), Akai, and Roland are probably overkill for
> the project. 
> These are all USB suggestions. There are firewire cards out there that
> offer super low latency, but from what I'm hearing that's probably not
> a big concern/requirement for this project.  Firewire devices all run
> through the FFADO layer and they actually have a list of supported
> devices:
> Obviously any of those would work, but I wasn't sure if your
> workstation had firewire or not. 
> On Mon Dec 29 2014 at 1:09:46 AM Panu Matilainen
> <pmatilai@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx <mailto:pmatilai@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>> wrote:
>     On 12/29/2014 09:07 AM, William W. Austin wrote:
>     >
>     > My wife composes, and for playback she has used an Audigy2 PCI
>     card in
>     > her desktop machine for years.   That computer is beyond it's
>     last legs
>     > now, and her new one has only PCIE slots.  (Yes she uses Linux
>     for her
>     > composing and playback.)
>     >
>     > The problem is that she uses the Midi feature of that card and has
>     > sound fonts that she loads (about 126 MB in size) into it.  She has
>     > given up trying to find one and has asked me to help... but so
>     far I've
>     > struck out.
>     >
>     > Are there ANY PCIE sound which is roughly the equivalent of the
>     Audigy
>     > 2 cards?   I won't say "money is no object", but I'm approaching the
>     > point where cost is less important than finding such a card if on
>     > exists.
>     >
>     > Any pointers on this issue will be greatly appreciated.
>     One possibile option that sort of side-steps the problem might be
>     a PCIe
>     - PCI adapter, such as
>     <>
>     Mind you I dont have any experience with such products, and then
>     there's
>     the question of whether the lot actually fits in the chassis at all.
>             - Panu -
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