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Thread: Moving USB Audio Interface Between Several Windows Computers.

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    Moving USB Audio Interface Between Several Windows Computers.

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    Intuitively, it seems that you should be able to move any USB device between computers without any complications. This is one of the benefits of USB vs. the internal sound cards, right?

    For example. In the morning my wife connects AI to her Yamaha Clavinova and records some instruments on her Dell laptop. In the afternoon my daughter moves AI to her Surface Pro and record vocals. In the evening I move AI to my desktop, add some instrument and finish mixing. So I need to be able to move AI freely and seamlessly between three Windows computers.

    I assume there should not be a problem installing AI's ASIO driver on multiple computers. The final mixing, compressing, EQ would happen only on one computer. This where I would need the most capable DAW software with the best signal processing capabilities, presets, plugins, etc. But what about the software, which would control the AI routing and capture the recording on each of the computers? Would it be possible to install and activate free DAW software, which comes with AI card, on several computers at once? Would it be possible to seamlessly move AI between computers without having to keep activating and reactivating the software licenses all the time?

    Is there any inexpensive (or free) DAW software for Windows 7 and 10, which I can legally install on all 3 systems? No need for fancy digital processing, just enough functionality to control AI's inputs and record multiple tracks using AI's ASIO driver. I was thinking about Audacity, but it does not include ASIO support out of box because of some licensing issues.

    Now I am choosing between Steinberg UR22, Roland Rubix22, PreSonus iTwo and Focusrite 2i4. And it looks like the choice would depend on which software would allow me to seamlessly move my AI between computers.

    So far PreSonus Studio One looks like the best choice, because it allows 5 activation. Ablelton Lite allows only 2 activation. Steinberg's USB-eLicenser looks very inconvenient and unpractical. Could not find any information about Pro Tools, so I assume it has only one activation.

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    Hi there,
    Yes, in theory you should be able to seamlessly move a USB interface from one computer to another without issue.

    Software wise, have you ruled out Reaper? You don't mention it but it seems like the obvious choice as there's no authorisation required, hardware or software.
    If you want to pay for it (once or three times) that's cool, but there's no requirement. It's also cross platform and fairly lightweight, but capable of modest home recording at least.

    ProTools is, as you suspect, single license via ilok.
    It's also annoyingly expensive.

    You shouldn't need to concern yourself with ASIO if you pick up a reputable interface.
    Anything decent will have it's own drivers with latency and multi I/O in mind.

    You can install that on as many computers as you like. I'm not aware of any drivers that are regulated or authorised.

    Hope that's helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Grawlf View Post
    That's a tad too much terminology. What do you mean by 'mix'?
    Quote Originally Posted by Steenamaroo View Post
    No VST can emulate that smell.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steenamaroo View Post
    Software wise, have you ruled out Reaper?
    I was thinking to use crippled DAW which comes with AI, until I figure out what I really want. Reaper has very good reviews and it is much cheaper than the other DAWs. Was not sure what would happen with Reaper after 60 days trial and what is the activation process.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steenamaroo View Post
    You shouldn't need to concern yourself with ASIO if you pick up a reputable interface.
    For some reason I was under the impression that all AIs come with their own ASIO drivers for Windows. And the DAW has to support ASIO if I want the low latency. If ASIO support is not required for DAW, then I can still use Audacity for recording on all 3 computers, and then use crippled DAW to mix it all together.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steenamaroo View Post
    Hope that's helpful.
    Yes, very helpful. Thank you.

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    After the 'trial' Reaper has a short countdown 'nag screen', but functionality is not limited or locked in anyway.
    It basically reminds you that you haven't paid.

    Sorry, misunderstanding. Yes, the majority of interfaces will come with their own drivers, meaning you won't be using a generic audio driver or having to use ASIO4All or whatever.
    Check the specs page for any interface you're considering. They'll tell you if it's win 7/10 compatible, and also if they have a specific driver or use generic audio drivers.

    Some super-basic AIs do use generic audio drivers. Maybe just me, but I'd avoid that.
    Quote Originally Posted by Grawlf View Post
    That's a tad too much terminology. What do you mean by 'mix'?
    Quote Originally Posted by Steenamaroo View Post
    No VST can emulate that smell.

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    Everything that Steen said ^^^^

    I would recommend Reaper. The trial is uncrippled, the licence is cheap, and after the trial you just get a nag screen. It is easy to install on several machines, and the licence permits that. I use it on any of three machines, using one or other of the interfaces I have.

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    One thing to keep in mind, at least regarding USB devices in Windows... each USB port and device attached to each port is considered a different device by Windows, so to have the most seamless experience doing what you want you would make sure to connect the interface to the same USB port (on each computer) every time. You may be able to get away with not doing this, but any minor changes in settings at the driver level won't carry between the interface on USB Port A and the interface on USB Port B. So this is more a cautionary suggestion than one you MUST do. It may be especially useful if you experience issues and think back to this.
    Boogeymen Productions
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