Old 06-03-2021, 08:46 AM   #1
karbomusic
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Default Thar She Blows - Tascam Model 24

I've had this for a couple weeks now. I got it because I do a lot of initial composing/writing with just my guitar/amp and pedal board with a couple of loopers. There usually becomes a phase where I need more (like vocals) but for a myriad of reasons, I do not want to move to a computer/DAW yet.

It eventually ends up in Reaper, but at least 60% of the time, it's just more efficient, simpler and faster to use old school dedicated hardware. I've been looking around for awhile and this unit really bridges the gap and adds some cool hybrid options:

1. My normal cadence of the looper/amp but mic'd into a track on the Tascam. I can then overdub and try things on ~24 tracks and really 'rough mix' to great extent.

2. I can haul it to a gig or rehearsal and use it as the PA mixer and record the full band live.

3. I can MTC it with Reaper - say I want a drum track from Reaper synced. My choices are keep it hybrid and I can copy the Tascam tracks into reaper later when it's far enough along and align with the drum track in Reaper. Or... I can record the drum mix coming from Reaper onto two tracks in the Tascam (I can do this via digital or analog).

4. I can set it as Reaper's ASIO interface. Take an existing Reaper project and set folders/groups or up to 20'ish tracks to feed into the Tascam tracks via ASIO hardware outputs. Since the mixer is all analog, it can be used as an analog summer/mixdown unit. This isn't high on my list but I did try it and it works. In this setup, I technically have the reaper track and any features FX etc. that then routes to the analog channel.

5. More hybrid stuff, I could technically set Reaper track inputs to Tascam ASIO outputs and flow in the other direction (or both). I don't have much reason to do this since I could as easily grab the files directly of the SD card and put in Reaper but it does offer various geeky creative options. There's more but these are the highlights I remember.

Other things I like...

- The per channel compressors are before the AD converter, they aren't great compressors but they can do what they are designed for which is to smooth out a highly dynamic peaky incoming signal.

- Except for the digital recorder, the entire unit is analog and very old school.

- If you ever had a PortaStudio et al back in the day, this is exactly like that workflow wise, warts and all. I wanted that though because it forces me to concentrate on the quality of the music and performance and most of all keeps the "millions of options, slice and dice" temptation off the table. This is a big one for me personally.

I could go on and on but thought I'd share. So far I'm loving it and it's super nice to be able to make a credible amount of music without having to move a &%* #*$&#$ mouse and deal with computer screens and app windows and god knows what LOL. /rant


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Old 06-03-2021, 09:30 AM   #2
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Considering the only difference between this and the 12 is MIDI in/out and the extra channels, and I'm not sure the MIDI is worth it, I'm thinking I shoulda got the 16 or 24 for future proofing. Its interesting that the mixer comes with a bunch of presets for all the major DAW's except Reaper. Not quite sure why that is?

OTOH, I'll probably under utilise the 12 as it is, so in reality it doesnt matter what I've bought

The only thing I think that limits the 12 is the lack of proper send/returns, as using stereo returns means not being able to use the inbuilt fx.

I hadnt considered the mixdown/summing thing you mention. It really does sound nicer than the Focusrite Saffire did (to my ears), and the all analog summing thing isnt something I've ever looked into before, being usually ITB. I'll consider this! Thanks!

Anyway, great write up. This range of mixers seems to be pretty classy to me, its surpassed my expectations for sure.
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Old 06-03-2021, 10:01 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by maxdembo View Post
Considering the only difference between this and the 12 is MIDI in/out and the extra channels, and I'm not sure the MIDI is worth it, I'm thinking I shoulda got the 16 or 24 for future proofing. Its interesting that the mixer comes with a bunch of presets for all the major DAW's except Reaper. Not quite sure why that is?
I'm pretty sure the mixer et al is all digital in the 12 and/or 16 but I'd need to confirm for the 16 as I can't remember. The 24 is literally an analog mixer with a digital recorder attached with some hybrid options. This is why the 12 can be a MIDI controller and the 24 cannot be a MIDI controller.

That's what I was looking for so I'm cool with that (amazed someone designed what I actually wanted for a change LOL) and FYI, pretty sure the analog summing thing won't be the same in the 12 because it's mixer is digital IIRC. So even though all three are from the same product, the 24 differs quite a bit from the other two.
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Old 06-03-2021, 10:19 AM   #4
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Interesting. I'm looking over the specs of all three but I cant see where that info is, or how it would be displayed.

Either way, its not something I'd considered until about 10 minutes ago so I can live without it

I felt the same when they released this btw! Seemed like the perfect device for my needs, just if the 16 had the MIDI option, I'd have gone for a few extra channels, but its not a big deal

Felt good to give my old mixer away too.
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Old 06-03-2021, 10:28 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by maxdembo View Post
Interesting. I'm looking over the specs of all three but I cant see where that info is, or how it would be displayed.
It's in various reviews on YT and I think in the block diagrams in the manuals. The feature pages sneakily imply it but omit saying it directly but it is so, the fact that the 24 can't be a MIDI controller is because the mixer section is fully analog instead of encoders etc.

Tascam 16: "All-In-One Mixing Studio"

Tascam 24: "The best of both worlds, the TASCAM Model 24 is a full featured 24 Track Digital Multitrack Recorder and 24 Channel USB Audio Interface with integrated Analog Mixdown capabilities. "

The term analog doesn't exist on the 12 or 16 feature lists - but that isn't a deal breaker - I'm sure most people prefer the controller/digital features vs me so they are just trying to cover all the bases me thinks. I just happened across it because the EQs etc. on the are analog and so on but again it's purely horses for courses here.
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Old 06-03-2021, 10:40 AM   #6
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It's in various reviews on YT and I think in the block diagrams in the manuals. The feature pages sneakily imply it but omit saying it directly but it is so, the fact that the 24 can't be a MIDI controller is because the mixer section is fully analog instead of encoders etc.

Tascam 16: "All-In-One Mixing Studio"

Tascam 24: "The best of both worlds, the TASCAM Model 24 is a full featured 24 Track Digital Multitrack Recorder and 24 Channel USB Audio Interface with integrated Analog Mixdown capabilities. "

The term analog doesn't exist on the 12 or 16 feature lists - but that isn't a deal breaker - I'm sure most people prefer the controller/digital features vs me so they are just trying to cover all the bases me thinks. I just happened across it because the EQs etc. on the are analog and so on but again it's purely horses for courses here.
Yeah, same, that sneaky wording is about all I could find as reference to it. The sneaky devils!
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Old 06-03-2021, 10:40 AM   #7
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Looks cool!

What's the attack and release on the compressors like? Is the EQ useable? And no solo buttons?
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Old 06-10-2021, 08:49 PM   #8
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I wanted that though because it forces me to concentrate on the quality of the music and performance and most of all keeps the "millions of options, slice and dice" temptation off the table. This is a big one for me personally.
See, you screwed yourself by learning all those tricks that REAPER can do and now you're using that as an excuse to be a gear slut!

Seriously, that's a cool looking unit. I had a Tascam Model 3 that looked similar, but with fewer knobs and 100% analog. I never bothered to learn how to use any of REAPER's "helper" features, so I am forced by choice to record in REAPER similar to how you intend to use the Tascam.
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Old 06-11-2021, 01:49 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by karbomusic View Post
I've had this for a couple weeks now. I got it because I do a lot of initial composing/writing with just my guitar/amp and pedal board with a couple of loopers. There usually becomes a phase where I need more (like vocals) but for a myriad of reasons, I do not want to move to a computer/DAW yet.


Looks really cool Karbo.
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Old 06-14-2021, 03:00 PM   #10
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Hello to All,

Great thread...I'm so glad I stumbled on to this thread. I've been looking to replace my Motu Ultralite & this could really do the trick. If I'm understanding it correctly, in all 3 models, you can fire up the mixer, plug in the instrument or mic, & hit record with a footswitch; so kool & so portastudio. I still have a portastudio 424 that I can't bear to part with cuz I have such fond memories of 4-track recording adventures.

Have a good one,

3EO
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Old 06-14-2021, 03:26 PM   #11
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Ive got the Model 12, Karbo has the 24. We just need someone to buy the 16 and we've got the set
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Old 06-14-2021, 06:03 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by three_eyed_otter View Post
Hello to All,

If I'm understanding it correctly, in all 3 models, you can fire up the mixer, plug in the instrument or mic, & hit record with a footswitch; so kool & so portastudio. I still have a portastudio 424 that I can't bear to part with cuz I have such fond memories of 4-track recording adventures.

Have a good one,

3EO
I think so yes.
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Old 06-17-2021, 08:32 AM   #13
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This is pretty cool.
Reminds me of my old Zoom MRS1608CD, but way better!

Quote:
Originally Posted by maxdembo
Ive got the Model 12, Karbo has the 24. We just need someone to buy the 16 and we've got the set
I'm very tempted, unfortunately (or Fortunately) funds are limited at the moment.

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Old 06-18-2021, 05:58 AM   #14
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@karbo...

Have you tried your Model 24 as an audio interface yet? If so, how is the latency? Im finding the round trip latency on the Model 12 to be a bit much, 20ms (which is suspiciously high), compared to my new Focusrite Scarlett 18i8 which appears to have way way way lower round trip latency (0ms? Which is suspiciously low ).

Just wondering if youve tried it and what your numbers are saying?
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Old 06-18-2021, 07:24 AM   #15
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@karbo...
I have not since I didn't really need to. I've attached it as an interface to play reaper tracks back out of the console (analog sum) but latency wouldn't matter there.
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