Any thoughts on the Tascam US-1800

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by Gasp100, Feb 1, 2012.

  1. Gasp100

    Gasp100 Silver Supporting Member

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    These look like serious bang for the buck, but I'm cautious about purchasing because I have not read any specs on round trip latency for using VST's (including Scuffham for playing guitar in real time).
    This has way more I/O than I will probably ever need, but hell that is not a bad thing. I assume the pre's are just okay, but they actually have received decent reviews. What I DO like is that this is a full rackmount and has a full IEC power cable connection so it would fit in my studio perfectly, I also need USB, SPDIF I/O, compatible with W7 32bit, I want to have 1/4" line inputs and outputs because I will be trying to do some reamping with a modeler as well.
    I was going to go back to the Focusrite Scarlett 8i6 which is really nice (maybe better pre's, some decent software included) but I know the round trip latency is ~12ms and not adjustable lower so it lags a bit for use with Scuffham.
    To be honest Tascam might even be worse, but it's worth a shot and the form factor and additional I/O make it appealing at this price (~$300).
    Thoughts?
     
  2. slayerbear17

    slayerbear17 Member

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    I,ve been eyeing the US 2000 model. I,ve been looking for reviews or user stories about how it performs recording 12+ channels at once.

    Currently with my Alesis IO26 I can get 14 channels and latency not being a huge issue on my laptop.
     
  3. JunkGear

    JunkGear Supporting Member

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    Sounds like you've already rationalized the purchase of this unit LOL

    You are correct in your thinking; you get what you pay for and in these units, the pre-amps are what suffers. As for bang for the buck though, it's hard to go wrong. I had the US-200, which worked fine with Windows 7 and was definitely usable with Guitar Rig. It was a good unit and never gave me problems. Eventually, I upgraded to a Presonus unit, which has cleaner more transparent pre-amps, but is no better or worse with either my DAW software or with Guitar Rig. And how much better did it sound? Noticeable, but not night and day.

    If it fits your budget and needs, it would most likely do fine for you.
    If you were recording a lot of detailed acoustic instruments or vocals, then I would say look for the better pre-amps.
     
  4. Gasp100

    Gasp100 Silver Supporting Member

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    Thanks! To be totally honest it could be a VERY long time until I actually mic an instrument again which makes me rethink both the need for quality pre's let alone 8! But the layout is good (INS on the front and back) and I do like the full 1U, just because I have a studio desk with built in rack and it will be much cleaner. I hate the sophomoric looking UI for their driver configuration, but I hope to not be using that too much.
    The Roland quad capture is on my list too, but that doesn't have a dedicated volume control for monitors/headphones (which is lame) and the only way I could do reamping is via SPDIF which might or might not work.
    I'll tell you, for the price the Focusrite gear is still very hard to be for mix of decent pre's, I/O and routing plus good software included.
     
  5. johnfv

    johnfv Member

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    I've done a lot of recording with the US-1641 (an earlier model but very similar to the 1800) - excellent bang for the buck and it has been rock solid. To me the main benefit of the Tascam is the number of tracks and the price (USB also). We've been recording 14 simultaneous tracks (live rehearsal recordings) for over a year with an old XP computer with no problems. All that said, I agree the Focusrite stuff does sound better; in fact we are upgrading to a Pro 40/Octopre system so we can record more tracks (and get the better mic pres). Some live recordings with the Tascam here:
    http://johnviehweg.com/wordpress/?p=88
    http://johnviehweg.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/BoogieMenTest_c4_l3.mp3
     
  6. mrface2112

    mrface2112 Member

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    I've also done a lot of recording with the US-1641 and can concur completely with the above. i've recorded a number of times through all 14 channels (16 counting the s/pdif using my apogee minime as the preamp/converter) to an XP laptop at 44.1/24bit with zero issues. I use it to record my band's practices and our occasional gigs. all of those places are what i would call "sonically compromised" in some way and all the recordings have a PA to contend with.

    The mic preamps aren't great, but they're at least on par with a mackie board. In fact, i sold my mackie sr24*4 b/c the preamps weren't any better and i didn't need that thing hanging around collecting dust. i'm thinking about selling my motu 2408 mk3 and just going with the 1641 full time, but i haven't fully come to terms with that.

    I need to do more critical playback listening through the 1641. i always dump the recording done with the 1641 from my laptop to my studio computer and mix through the motu. That said, i've got an API lunchbox enroute and will be filling that with quality preamps (starting with a pair of DIY ClassicAPI VP26's), so let's not have any misconceptions about the preamps in the Tascam--they're wholly usable, but they're not much to write home about.

    You could do a lot worse, IMO.

    cheers,
    wade
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2012

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