Vienna Symphonic Library Forum
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  • VSL and External Drives.

    Hey everyone; I just had a quick question. I am looking into purchasing the Special Edition pack(s) for some mobile purposes on my laptop. However, I wanted to make sure that I won't run into any trouble, as my MacBook only has a FireWire 400 port. So I was just curious if a 7200 RPM HD, using FW 400 would suffice without presenting any issues. Thanks so much!

  • Hi, I use an external FW400 Western Digital drive for VSL libraries on my PC. It works fine. However, I would recommend you don't use Lacie drives - I've had three of them crash and had to re-install all the data.

  • Hi.

        Not recommend to use external HD with VSL library..In fact I forced many problems with external HD such WD and Lacie through FW400.



  • more details on this ...

    - especially on macs with FW400 audio devices such drives (attached via firewire 400) can be not a good choice ... data transfer often collides with audio transmission and you receive dropouts or crackles ... happens often with MOTU devices, on rare occasions also with RME

    - some LaCie models (and also some other external drives) are not really properly cooled, so using them extensively for sample streaming is leading to massive overheating of the harddisk and so it dies long before the expected lifetime


    and remember: only a CRAY can run an endless loop in just three seconds.
  • Thanks for the info guys! Are such audio/data collisions common, or easily resolved? Aside from that, most people are not having issues with FW 400 handling the data transfer? Thanks! Derrick

  • in most cases we had to notice this seems to be mainly a driver issue of the FW audio device and possibly some undocumented feature of the firewire protocol on macs resp. the used FW-controllers on the motherboard ... if it happens sometimes it can be solved using another driver version ... it is not a matter of bandwidth at regular use


    and remember: only a CRAY can run an endless loop in just three seconds.
  • Thanks Christian - so what would you recommend as the best PC and Mac external hard disk options for VSL samples?

  • there are literally hundreds of models - whenever possible we prefer to use eSATA disks (faster, less load on the CPU)

    from my experience external disks in a metal case keep the drive as cool as possible

    we mainly use Raidsonic Icy Box and Icy Docks currently - they have all the same carriers so we can change the housing and different connectors in a very flexible way


    and remember: only a CRAY can run an endless loop in just three seconds.
  • Thanks Christian! I don't think my PC has an eSATA port, can you recommend a PCI card solution?