What About Emagic?
I found your site through a search engine while trying to obtain opinions about digital audio products for Mac. My search turned up your multi-part series earlier this year on this exact subject.
I was curious if there were some conscious reason for your excluding Emagic, since they have products that most others rank near the top.
Particularly, under hardware audio interfaces, Emagic has the Audiowerk2 Production Kit which bundles a card, digital audio software, and other utilities. The card competes in features and price in the Consumer PCI Audio Interface category with the Midiman Delta DIO2496, but with the software an added bonus. These are the two products I am considering, along with the Roland UA-30 USB audio I/F.
Also, under the software category you discuss Steinberg Cubase VST, but not the competing Emagic Logic Audio series. They are similarly priced, both from German companies, and have similar feature sets. Since Opcode has been wasted by Gibson, placing me in the market for new DAW software, these are the two product lines I have been researching. Both offer trial versions for direct comparison in my system, so independent reviews, while helpful, are not crucial for my decision. But on the hardware side, other’s reviews are prerequisite for my making an intelligent choice.
I was unfamiliar with your site prior to this, but am interested in all things Mac, so will explore when I get a chance.
—Weldon Smith, Los Angeles
Sadly, the only reason I can think of was totally unconscious. I am aware of both Logic Audio and the Audiowerk2 production kit, but for some reason overlooked them both when I wrote the series. I have nothing against Emagic; they produce fine software and hardware.
I have a friend who recently switched from Vision to Logic Audio. Though it took her awhile to get used to the new interface (which from her description is unlike any other DAW/sequencer I’ve experienced), she rates it higher than both Digital Perfomer and Cuebass VST (which she particularly disliked—your reaction may vary).
Maybe I just fell back on what I use myself, or have used in the past. Or maybe I just need to wean myself from Opcode (RIP). I may be changing software platforms very soon, though, and Emagic is definitely on my list. I’ll keep you (and all my readers) posted.
Anyway, nobody’s perfect. Thank you for pointing out my oversight. —David Ozab, Contributing Editor/Music
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Shopping for a Mac
I’ve just read your Segments article in the June issue of ATPM, and it completely bears out my own findings on the subject of purchasing Macintosh equipment at the big electrical retailers.
My first Mac—a Performa 400, bought in 1993—was purchased from a local branch of Currys electrical retailers. I knew what I wanted, namely a Mac and not a bland, beige PC box, and got a decent deal for it. However, purchasing software for the machine from the outlet I had bought it from proved completely impossible! Several weeks later, the store ceased to sell Macs at all.
My second Mac—a Performa 5200CD (ahh, happy memories…)—was purchased from a branch of Dixons, a similar retailer to Currys, in mid 1996. Again, the same story over again, a good deal, but the store stopped selling Apple equipment a few weeks later. The same store now has one iMac and one iBook (with the “E” and “1” keys missing, though nothing vital, you understand) lying rotting in a corner amongst a stack of “Packard Bell” boxes…
My third and current Mac, a blueberry iMac (yum!) was purchased from Bainbridges, the Newcastle-upon-Tyne branch of the John Lewis group. At the time, the box-shifters at PC World—by all means buy your iMac there, just for God’s sake don’t ask them for advice!—were doing a time-limited offer of a free HP DeskJet 840C printer for the same price as the iMac on its own. Bainbridges themselves were not doing any similar offers, but I wanted their two-year (free!) extended warranty on the iMac, having had significant problems with the 5200. Not only did Bainbridges match the PC World deal, giving me a free printer, but also gave me the two-year warranty and three months of free telephone technical support—not that I’ve needed it, of course, hey, we’re talking Macs here. :-)
In return, I recommended Bainbridges to a colleague of mine who wanted to buy his University-age daughter an iMac for home, an iBook for college and a USB CD-RW drive and a scanner—well over £2,500 worth of kit! And buy it all at Bainbridges he did.
So, all in all, everyone’s happy. Bainbridges have got lots of our cash, my colleague has got his daughter her new kit, and I’ve got my free printer.
Currys, Dixons and PC World…are you listening? Hey, guys, like the ad says, “Think Different”!
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ATPM is a great info source for me and my friends here who used Macs since 1984 (128K). However, I notice that your coverage of the international Mac is null (i.e., what applications support Arabic? Is this new application WorldScript compatible.) Thanks for considering.
Thank you for your feedback. We would gladly try to improve our international coverage, but in most cases our staff members simply lack the qualification and testing resources to report on the international aspects, such as proper support for other languages. We are trying to improve in areas where we can, such as by introducing a new links section with country-specific information. —Daniel Chvatik
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