Old 02-17-2015, 08:46 AM   #1
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Default Who Gigs Live with Reaper?

I was thinking about getting a laptop (cheap) and using Reaper to play live with while I had a 24bit mix playing live in Reaper as a backing track.

I would use Kontakt playing Sample pianos live the White Grand, and Scarbee mk II and some soft synths while singing through a small interface.

After considering the options, I think I'll try out the Steinberg UR22 It has midi and solid on Windows from what I hear.

Here's the Steinberg UR22

https://www.steinberg.net/en/product...elle/ur22.html

Thoughts?

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Old 02-17-2015, 09:15 AM   #2
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I've been running live sound with Reaper for about 6 years now. I always make it record all the inputs to multitrack simultaneously too. Zero issues. Not even once. I haven't been playing out (or even enough lately) but Reaper is my live performance rig for guitar now too. You will not find a more stable DAW for live mixing work at extreme low latency.

Just playing back backing tracks for a live show and not even mixing with the system would be child's play for Reaper. Probably even do it with a 20 year old G3 laptop. The MIDI instruments you mention will be the thing that might need a bit of modern horsepower depending on what you want to use. There are a few modern sampled instrument plugins that use a gazillion samples for every single note and use more processor and ram that the entire DAW by itself.

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Old 02-17-2015, 10:08 AM   #3
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The MIDI instruments you mention will be the thing that might need a bit of modern horsepower depending on what you want to use. There are a few modern sampled instrument plugins that use a gazillion samples for every single note and use more processor and ram that the entire DAW by itself.
That's the thing!

I know just playing back 24 bit mix in Reaper and playing soft synths like NI synths is no biggy, but some of my sample libs use like over 3 gigs loaded (not streaming) via Kontakt 5.

I COULD stream, and perhaps use an external 7200 USB drive.
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Old 02-17-2015, 10:34 AM   #4
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Live gigging?
I'd do nothing less than a SSD on the internal SATA bus. (Assuming you will not be using a newer machine with m-pci based SSD which would obviously be excellent.) You'll want that no matter what machine you decide to go with.

Use the external USB devices for backup drives only.
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Old 02-17-2015, 10:35 AM   #5
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I work a major bluegrass festival every year (Wintergrass) and while I'm not on the sound crew, those guys have Reaper all over the place. When I'm doing house management duties in the bigger venues, I like to stand behind the booth just to watch.
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Old 02-17-2015, 01:10 PM   #6
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Live gigging?
I'd do nothing less than a SSD on the internal SATA bus. (Assuming you will not be using a newer machine with m-pci based SSD which would obviously be excellent.) You'll want that no matter what machine you decide to go with.

Use the external USB devices for backup drives only.
SSD would rock.

I currently would drag my old DAW which has like 4 internal drives and weighs a ton! LOL

Doesn't have an SSD drive like my new daw does, but it does have 3 HDD 7200 WD drives. 1 for the OS, 2 for streaming samples, and 1 for recording.

However I would eventually like to either build another daw like a mid tower or a laptop with an SSD drive.

After reading up on some interfaces, I think either the Steinberg UR22 or the Roland Duo-Capture EX would do the trick. which ever one has the best latency and is the most stable would win.
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Old 02-17-2015, 02:39 PM   #7
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You will not find a more stable DAW for live mixing work [...].
Mixing, perhaps. Sequencing live, no f*****g way. It's full of bugs.
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Old 02-17-2015, 02:47 PM   #8
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Mixing, perhaps. Sequencing live, no f*****g way. It's full of bugs.
I wouldn't use Reaper for sequencing. Just playback 24bit mixes and live.

And by sequencing do you mean recording midi tracks? I record in midi all day long and works great for me.
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Old 02-17-2015, 03:41 PM   #9
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I use REAPER with REASamplomatic as a sample trigger via USB midi pedal. I use a mini laptop with a Compact flash card hard "drive". Running REAPER 3.x still too . Only problem I have is sometimes the USB cable comes loose and the midi interface goes offline. When this happens, I have to re-start REAPER for it to see the interface and start working again so I tape down everything.

So, I sing, play guitar and kick off samples. I feel like Geddy Lee. LOL!
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Old 02-17-2015, 04:07 PM   #10
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I wouldn't use Reaper for sequencing. Just playback 24bit mixes and live.

And by sequencing do you mean recording midi tracks? I record in midi all day long and works great for me.
No - to me "sequencing" in a live context is primarily about playing and processing, rather than recording.

When you "record in midi all day long", do you even consider that "live gigging"? If so, your gigs are perhaps the longest I've ever heard of.
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Old 02-19-2015, 05:19 AM   #11
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When you "record in midi all day long", do you even consider that "live gigging"? If so, your gigs are perhaps the longest I've ever heard of.
I wouldn't considering working in the studio in midi the same as live gigging. I would consider live gigging to be 1 and 1/2 or 2 hours of a live show with all original improv and produced material.
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Old 02-19-2015, 09:33 AM   #12
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I've used REAPER in many live scenarios over the years. In fact, the thing that made me switch completely from ProTools to REAPER was its stability for recording important, once only live gigs. It never let me down.

The most recent thing I've done live is used REAPER as my main synth engine for live keyboard performance. For that gig I needed piano, orchestral strings, Hammond organ, Eminent 310u strings, Fender Rhodes and Wurlitzer 200A sounds which I could layer and adjust in real time.
The rig ended up being REAPER running on my Sony Vaio Duo 11 Tablet with Native Instruments Kontakt (Scarbee A200, New York and Vienna Grand layered together, factory orchestral string library and Scarbee MKII), GSI VB3, Interruptor Night Flight String synth with Arts Acoustic Bog Rock and Valhalla Room for reverb.
The keyboard controller was my Yamaha KX8 which has assignable knobs which I assigned to REAPER channel faders to alter the balance of the layered sounds.
At that stage, I was using ASIO4ALL with the internal audio which was plenty good enough for this task and latency wasn't an issue.
I used that rig through a stereo keyboard amp for around a year every week without a single issue.
The Kontakt libraries were actually running from a Sandisk 45MB/S SD card plugged into the built in SD reader and I had ZERO streaming issues even with two grand piano libraries and the Scarbee e-piano libraries layered together with strings and played quite busily with lots of polyphony.
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Old 02-19-2015, 04:20 PM   #13
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I'm going to +1 using an internal SATA and avoiding USB like the plague for live situations.

A long time ago, I was DJ'ing a wedding with my laptop and my little usb external soundcard got pulled out of the USB port. The entire dance floor heard a horrifyingly loud "eh eh eh eh eh eh eh eh eh eh eh eh eh" on repeat for 15 seconds before I rebooted the computer. Luckily, I had a burned CD in a walkman on standby, but holy S.

Edit: Just realized you can only control your drive being internal, but for the most part you don't have a choice about using an external soundcard. But hey, at least you can cut the risk in half, lol.
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Old 02-19-2015, 06:29 PM   #14
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A long time ago, I was DJ'ing a wedding with my laptop and my little usb external soundcard got pulled out of the USB port.
That's what gaffa tape is for.
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Old 02-19-2015, 09:46 PM   #15
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Yep. On an old dell P4 and more recently on a macbook pro via bootcamp. Reaper runs fucking great! You will want to do extensive practise and testing to make sure you have all your bases covered but you should be fine. If you are using a lot of custom marker actions, things can sometimes behave a little strangely (i had to redesign and streamline our set when this became apparent. It worked 99% of the time, but something not doing what it's supposed to while you're on stage is unacceptable).
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Old 02-20-2015, 08:02 AM   #16
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I use Reaper Live. I run it on an older Dell Inspiron Core Duo laptop. I run an instance of Kontakt 5 and I trigger the samples with my guitar using Jam Origin's MIDI Guitar in front of Kontakt. I use an A\B foot switch to switch between my amp and my laptop rigs on the fly. It works great. And it's interesting to see people's reactions when you are suddenly playing synths and samples with your guitar.
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Old 02-20-2015, 12:47 PM   #17
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I've used Reaper as a multichannel backing track machine (with click track). The nice thing about Reaper is that you can add custom action markers, so you can stop the track when the song is over and automatically go to the next one. You just have to press space to start a song. I was using a Fast Track Ultra on a Dell laptop, never had a problem.

Now I'm thinking about using Reaper as a sample machine as well. Would it be dangerous to run backing tracks and play samples or softsynths at the same time? Probably I would run just one or two VSTi (and not heavy CPU consuming) per project.

Also, is it ok to run several projects at once? I mean, I want to put each song in a different project (with backing tracks, click track and 1 or 2 softsynths).

Thank's!
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Old 02-20-2015, 12:59 PM   #18
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Just try it.

The thing is to shake down and rehearse this stuff ahead of time. Activity Monitor is your friend. If your first approach crosses a line somewhere, there just might be a different approach that does work without having to upgrade any hardware.

Reaper in OSX is the most insanely stable DAW I've ever had my hands on. I don't think there's much it can't do if you're creative.

Examples of rehearsing stuff:
My controller (USB MIDI devices + remote desktop on iPad) connection is wireless. So I rehearsed how to restart both network connections without stopping Reaper.

I've made plans for every scenario where a specific piece of gear fails.

Before I ran my first live show with Reaper as FOH, I shook it down for two weeks running and recording all 36 inputs for at least 4 hours every day. Passing the test meant there could not be one single dropped sample or any other issue the entire time. Reaper simply delivered.
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Old 02-20-2015, 01:04 PM   #19
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I use Reaper live, mostly as a VST host, played by Roland PK5 midi pedals through a USB to Midi cable to the laptop (Win Vista), using the inbuilt sound card and ASIO4ALL driver into Reaper latest version.

I can play chords through this by the use of another VSTi called Cthulu. (About £50 as far as I can remember). Although it's not its primary purpose, you can assign chords of up to 5 notes (I think, I only use 4) to individual keys on the Roland pedals. It works quite well for me live. It doesn't require any midi wizardry that can't be done using point and click on a mouse.

I also play samples by using ReaSamplomatic5000. I assign different midi channels to samples, sounds from the soft synth and Chthulu song presets. During a set, I don't have to touch the laptop, having already opened the setlist 'project' in Reaper. All triggering/playing/chords are then selected by changing midi channel from the Roland pedals.
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