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Robert Bone

Anyone have knowledge on using a Tascam Model 24 with Cakewalk?

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I was looking at picking up a mixer for live performance, and happened to see the Tascam Model 24 mixer, and was wondering if anyone had any knowledge of it being a reasonable choice, to ALSO function as 16-mic preamp audio interface (and recorder) with Cakewalk, because I have a number of songs where I want to capture live drums, with mics for each tom, kick, snare, overheads, and room, having a bunch of mic inputs and the ability to pass each channel to Cakewalk.

Anyone have any experience with either using the Tascam Model 24 mixer/interface/recorder, or at least reviewing it?   (I don't really care about the recorder, since I would feed everything into Cakewalk on my laptop, for mobile capture of live drums).

I DO have a Presonus 1818VSL audio interface, and its 8-channel expansion unit, so I could just use that setup, but I was looking for a mixer anyways, for live performance, and thought perhaps this one might fill that need, AND provide the inputs for capturing live drums, as well, for recording.

So, I guess the questions are, essentially:

1) Is the Tascam Model 24 a decent choice as a live sound mixer?

2) Is it a decent audio interface?

3) Would I be better off getting a better/different live sound mixer, and separately just using my Presonus 1818VSL and the expansion unit for capturing the live drums for Cakewalk?

Here is a link to the Tascam Model 24, if anyone wants to look it over and provide thoughts on my questions:

https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/Model24--tascam-model-24-mixer-interface-recorder 

THANKS, 

Bob Bone

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I just bought the Tascam Model 24 and am using it with Cakewalk by Bandlab. It seems to work really well with extremely low latency. The one thing I’m having trouble with is that it shows only 12 available channels instead of the full 24 or even 22. Like in the Input channel list, it only shows the odd numbers one, three, five etc.. It doesn’t show the even numbered channels. Other DAW’s show all the channels. Kind of strange but maybe I will figure that out. The board is really nice though, I recommend it. Know this one thing though. Your computer will play back through channel 21 and you have to set the mode button to PC. Took me forever to figure that out LOL.

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37 minutes ago, barron27 said:

I just bought the Tascam Model 24 and am using it with Cakewalk by Bandlab. It seems to work really well with extremely low latency. The one thing I’m having trouble with is that it shows only 12 available channels instead of the full 24 or even 22. Like in the Input channel list, it only shows the odd numbers one, three, five etc.. It doesn’t show the even numbered channels. Other DAW’s show all the channels. Kind of strange but maybe I will figure that out. The board is really nice though, I recommend it. Know this one thing though. Your computer will play back through channel 21 and you have to set the mode button to PC. Took me forever to figure that out LOL.

Cakewalk is showing them as stereo channels.

To show the individual channels, check "Show Mono Outputs" within Preferences/Audio/Devices.

 

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I use the Model 24 with CbB and like other users, it took me forever to figure out the DAW playback  channel was 21-22.  I don’t feel like there was enough instruction in the manual about using the mixer as an audio interface. One issue  I’m having right now is the fact that when you record, the compression and EQ strips are bypassed, recording a totally dry signal. The problem is sometimes you want to notch out some low end or add a tiny bit of compression to a vocal. I opted for using a tube mic preamp instead but I still feel like this should be a capability of the mixer. It would be nice to have these kinds of things switchable in a mixer to make it more flexible. As far as recording and performance, it seems to do a good job. I also had a problem with showing only the odd-numbered inputs so I’m hoping to fix that with the above recommendation.

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Also, I just tried switching to “show mono outputs”. It didn’t work. It still only shows the odd numbered mono inputs and a stereo option of each. 

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On 1/3/2020 at 4:02 PM, msmcleod said:

Cakewalk is showing them as stereo channels.

To show the individual channels, check "Show Mono Outputs" within Preferences/Audio/Devices.

 

Hello, msmcleod and the Cakewalk Community.

 I have the Tascam Model 12 and it only shows odd channels 1,3,5. I have tried the advice above and it did not work do anyone know of anything else I can try?

Thanks for your help. 

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4 hours ago, mrhodes100@aol.com said:

Hello, msmcleod and the Cakewalk Community.

 I have the Tascam Model 12 and it only shows odd channels 1,3,5. I have tried the advice above and it did not work do anyone know of anything else I can try?

Thanks for your help. 

Within the audio devices tab in preferences, you'll only ever see the odd channels - this is because Windows shows them as stereo pairs. In other words:

1  = Stereo Channel 1  (inputs 1 & 2)
3 = Stereo Channel 3  (inputs 3 & 4)
5 = Stereo Channel 5 (inputs 5 & 6)

With "Show Mono Outputs" checked, although you won't see them on this page, when selecting an input or output on a track within the track view, you'll see something like the following:

Left 1                   <- this is MONO channel 1
Right 1                <- this is MONO channel 2
Stereo 1             <- this is channels 1 & 2 as a STEREO pair

Left 3                   <- this is MONO channel 3
Right 3                <- this is MONO channel 4
Stereo 3             <- this is channels 3 & 4 as a STEREO pair

Left 5                   <- this is MONO channel 5
Right 5                <- this is MONO channel 6
Stereo 5             <- this is channels 5 & 6 as a STEREO pair
 

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Assuming that the 1818VSL is what it appears to be, a direct descendant of my FP10's, and the expansion chassis, which I assume is a PreSonus DigiMax or something similar gives you another 8 mic pres and inputs, similar to what I get when I daisy chain my 2 FP10's, you already have an interface/mixer with 16 inputs in your studio.

PreSonus marketed the 1818VSL as an interface/digital mixer, with the accompanying wireless controller app running on an iPad. Have you ever used that?

(I like the Firepods' output routing, there are 8 TRS outputs in 4 pairs that appear to Cakewalk, plus a stereo S/PDIF, so I have 4 pairs of monitors that I switch back and forth between for referencing mixes using the I/O selector on the bus, all inside Cakewalk. With both of them hooked up, and amps and speakers, there's no reason I couldn't do up to 16-channel surround mixes)

The 24 doesn't look like it would get you anything you don't already have as far as recording interface/inputs, except for being limited to 44.1/48KHz. Its defining feature is really the fact that it can record to an SD card, so if, as you say, you have no interest in that, and you already have a 16 input interface that probably has better performance as an interface, it seems to me that the recording/interface capabilities of the Tascam are superfluous.

That is, unless you'd see a great value in not needing to bring the PreSonus to live shows when you want to record, but then you could probably find a nice, compact mixer that would do the same mixing job as the Tascam 24 and have less mixer to schlep.

The Tascam seems purpose made for one use: record to the card while you're doing live sound, then transfer the files to a DAW. They probably only made it a recording interface because in order to make a Portastudio they had to build most of the electronics of a recording interface into it, so why not. And that's why it only goes up to 48, because as a recording machine, it cares most about writing to that card.

As far as the other people in this thread who are reporting that Cakewalk names the inputs using the odd-numbered ones, maybe you can access Input 2 under the name "Input 1L" or "Input 1R" or something like that? On my system, my first 2 inputs (which are labeled 1 and 2 and paired by having a bracket silkscreened around them) are named by Cakewalk "Left Firepod ASIO 1L" "Right Firepod ASIO 1L" and "Stereo Firepod ASIO 1L." So if we translate this all out, input 2 shows up in my list of choices as, literally, "right Firepod ASIO one left."

Then the next pair are "Left Firepod 3L" and so on. Now if you told your sweating new tape op to make sure that the channel inputs are correct, all 16 of them, hmm, the XLR cable plugged into the bottom FP10, last input on the right. marked #8 is it supposed to be "Right Firepod 2 ASIO 7L?"

This has caused me to fail to record things I wanted to record. Fortunately not vital things, just practice sessions, but still, I looked up at the end of 5 minutes and the wrong input was armed for recording. I brought it up with the developers in this forum and was told that Cakewalk regurgitates what the driver tells it and that was the way it was. However, Cakewalk is not the only audio program I run that uses ASIO inputs, it's merely the only one that allows the input labeling to remain indecipherable. The other programs have implemented the avant garde AI 2.0 algorithmical ability of Reformatting What The Driver Reports. I would like to see Cakewalk gain this feature, so feel free to register your displeasure and lobby for its addition.

Here is an example of the input names looking much more understandable:

 

Inputnames.jpg

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I've been considering the Tascam Model 24 myself, but my main gripe was that the audio is always sent to your DAW pre EQ. 

I'm a bit old school with my recording, and like to shape my sound before I record it. 

I also looked at the Soundcraft Signature 22 mtk. For around the same price, you get a better mixer (an extra mid band + [maybe?] better pre's) , but lose the record to SD option. However, like the Model 24, the output to USB is pre EQ.

The best option I found was the Allen & Heath MixWizard WZ4 16:2 with their USB option.  This has the best mixer out of all of them, and the option to go either pre or post EQ on the outputs (albeit annoyingly via a jumper on each channel which means taking the thing apart).  However,  given that the USB option needs to be installed by a technician, I guess the tech could set the jumpers as well at this point.  Downsides: price with the USB option is about twice the cost of the Tascam / Soundcraft, and you've got 16 rather than 22 channels. 

[Edit] - one of the big pluses for the A&H is that it has individual outs on every channel. So you've always got the option of using another audio i/f if you don't opt for the USB option.
 

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On 1/3/2020 at 6:09 PM, Craig Anderton said:

Hopefully this review I wrote will answer most of your questions :)

Apologies in advance for hijacking this thread. I've been researching the Tascam and similar products to try to help a friend who has lost his sight. He has used multitrack cassette recorders in the past and wants to find a manageable digital recording solution. Can anyone tell me if the buttons for Mute and Rec give tactile feedback? In other words, can you tell by touch whether they're on? This would be very helpful, thanks.

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45 minutes ago, henkejs said:

Apologies in advance for hijacking this thread. I've been researching the Tascam and similar products to try to help a friend who has lost his sight. He has used multitrack cassette recorders in the past and wants to find a manageable digital recording solution. Can anyone tell me if the buttons for Mute and Rec give tactile feedback? In other words, can you tell by touch whether they're on? This would be very helpful, thanks.

From what I can tell, the mute button does (it's a latching push-down / push-up ) , but the record doesn't (it's a momentary with a light).

Having said that, the Tascam is probably the most tactile out there (unless you look at discontinued gear like the Yamaha MD-8)

If you know an electronics wizard, maybe they could build a small sensor he could wear on his finger that would make a sound when it detected a light?

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On 2/12/2020 at 7:17 AM, barron27 said:

Also, I just tried switching to “show mono outputs”. It didn’t work. It still only shows the odd numbered mono inputs and a stereo option of each. 

Yep - "Right Channel 7" is actually channel 8 etc.

That is something I would love to see changed someday in CbB.   I would like friendly names for each mono section rather than L-R-Stereo  of the "friendly" name of the channel

Channel 7 of my Octa-capture feeds ins and outs of my UA 6176. Left to the 610B, right to the 1176 when running in "Split" mode on the 6176.  I remember that only because the physical front of the 6176 has the 610 on the left, 1176 on the right.  Unfortunately, I am dyslexic as f*ck, and anything where I have to figure out left and right when not sitting in a car seriously requires a 2 minute mental exercise that I worked out years ago...no sh!t.  For now Channel 7 is named "UA 6176" and it's functional if not superfriendly. 

Almost everything I track comes in as Mono, other than a Synth with a stereo output. 

Cosmetic maybe but it sure would be friendlier.  

Dyslexics of the world untie!

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3 hours ago, msmcleod said:

Having said that, the Tascam is probably the most tactile out there (unless you look at discontinued gear like the Yamaha MD-8)

If you know an electronics wizard, maybe they could build a small sensor he could wear on his finger that would make a sound when it detected a light?

Thanks for the feedback and the suggestion. If only I were clever enough to make something like that. . . .

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13 hours ago, msmcleod said:

Within the audio devices tab in preferences, you'll only ever see the odd channels - this is because Windows shows them as stereo pairs. In other words:

1  = Stereo Channel 1  (inputs 1 & 2)
3 = Stereo Channel 3  (inputs 3 & 4)
5 = Stereo Channel 5 (inputs 5 & 6)

With "Show Mono Outputs" checked, although you won't see them on this page, when selecting an input or output on a track within the track view, you'll see something like the following:

Left 1                   <- this is MONO channel 1
Right 1                <- this is MONO channel 2
Stereo 1             <- this is channels 1 & 2 as a STEREO pair

Left 3                   <- this is MONO channel 3
Right 3                <- this is MONO channel 4
Stereo 3             <- this is channels 3 & 4 as a STEREO pair

Left 5                   <- this is MONO channel 5
Right 5                <- this is MONO channel 6
Stereo 5             <- this is channels 5 & 6 as a STEREO pair
 

msmcleod, Thanks for the info.

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It would be possible for Cakewalk to make the naming of the inputs much friendlier.

I don't know how the other programs do it, but I know enough about programming to know that it can be done via parsing and translation of what Windows is giving it from the driver, via brute force with a database of interfaces, or what the coders seem to have tried at one point, simply allowing the user to rename the inputs and outputs. That last doesn't work because Cakewalk doesn't allow us to rename the individual ones, only do it at the pair level, so input 2 still can't be called "Input 2." According to Cakewalk, there can be no such things as Inputs 2, 4, 6 or 8 on my FP10's.

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