Old pro tools system. Need help

dogooder

Member
I inherited a protools setup consisting of a Mac G4 with a 9.2 OS and 4 digidesign 882/20s, 1 digidesign adat bridge and a digidesign video world clock. The Mac G4 is loaded with protools 5.2 I have no clue how to use it. I tried opening protools but it wouldn't open, said it needed the hardware hooked up. So I hooked up one of the 882s and the adat bridge and then protools opened, so I figure I have the hardware hooked up properly using the cables that came with it. I plugged a guitar through a Mesa V twin preamp pedal into the 882, it didn't show any input signal. I hooked up my Yamaha 02R 96 board to it and ran 8 tracks out and it showed no input signal. I tried hooking up one of the other 882s, same thing. I swapped ports for the 882 and the ADAT bridge, I had tracks armed in protools, still no go. I have the protools help but it doesn't show how to use the outboard hardware and I have no literature on them. I don't see how I can go any further until I know I am getting an input signal at the 882s. It would be really nice to take the tracks off my HD24 and do the editing in protools and make my life easy.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Thanx
J.D.
 

dogooder

Member
It's going to be easier to skip all that old Pro Tools gear. Do you have any other computer
No, I don't have another computer besides my laptop and a gaming computer that is newer than the Mac, but not "new", not even sure of the OS on it, haven't touched it for years, I think it is Windows 10. I haven't used an Apple or Windows OS in years either, I run Linux on my laptop. I am seventy years old now and my career is coming to an end and I am not about to invest any kind of money in new technology, I am on a fixed income. I don't mean to come across in a snooty way. I have no intentions of selling anything I produce or having it critiqued and don't really care if it is pristine or.. I have been using a Yamaha 02R96 and an 02R running into an Alesis HD24 for years now and it suits me just fine. I figured if I could get this gear up and going I could just do editing on it and maybe some midi and it was all free. I can do any mixing I need on the 02Rs once the editing is done. I can do the editing on the HD24 but it is a pain in the ass. It is usually just easier to rerecord the track. I don't need any plug ins or anything fancy, just things to make life easier. The last time I used a computer was in 99 with cakewalk with an even older Mac. I play drums, guitar, bass, keys, sax, pedal steel and vocals and do everything myself now, so I am not looking to have a recording studio and record anyone but myself. If interested I can link you to videos of original tunes I have recorded on the aforementioned equipment then made videos of on the laptop. That would give you and idea of what I do. If not, it doesn't really matter. Thanx for responding. I don't really expect much help with this older gear, it has probably been mostly forgotten by now by most.
 

bouldersoundguy

Well-known member
I didn't have time to give a full answer as I was mixing a live band, but my suggestion is pretty cheap and won't require a beefy computer. Using an affordable USB hard drive adapter and the free app HD24tools, you can transfer recordings to your computer quite easily. This is how I do it. It does require removing drives from their caddies, which is pretty easy.


 

dogooder

Member
I didn't have time to give a full answer as I was mixing a live band, but my suggestion is pretty cheap and won't require a beefy computer. Using an affordable USB hard drive adapter and the free app HD24tools, you can transfer recordings to your computer quite easily. This is how I do it. It does require removing drives from their caddies, which is pretty easy.


The other desk top I have has eighteen gigs of ram and high end video cards for its day? The Mac G4 has a SCSI drive. I am not up on all the new stuff. I would have to by another puter, interface and software package? Could I just get an interface for the G4 and use the protools 5.2? There must be some way to convert it to get in with USB or newer? I don't really want to record with it, just upload, do some quick editing, maybe some midi and then download. The G4 has a light pipe and an ethernet connection. Every solution I asked about or looked into over the last couple of years started to run into thousands of dollars or I just wasn't getting steered straight. I would have no problem opening up computers and swapping out drives, boards etc. I went to a local community college a while back and took and adult learning course just for that and I repair all my own amps etc using scopes, signal generators etc, so I don't see any of that posing a problem.
Once again, thanx for taking the time to respond.
J.D.
 

Hmrc

Member
Hi ,
so :
are the cards installed correctly with ribbon bridge cable ?
are the interfaces corectly connected to cards + right cascade world clock set ?
you can also try to connect only 1 interface to the pro tools card n° 1 for test ,
(if Pro Tools software loading is correct it ask the hardware setup)

Pro Tools24 and 24Mix series do not need scsi hard drives !!!
it can run with Ide-Ata/Pata hard drives internal or external if firewire ,
(also the hard drive where is the OS can be used for rec-play, but not suggested as well)
USB external hard drive are toooooo slow for pro tools ,
as Mac Os 9 run only USB 1,0 protocol ,
as the inf.... Apple did not want to equip it with the USB 2,0 driver (extension)
(moreover already present in early versions OSX)
for push the users to go on OSX , and Pro Tools V6
for which, however, no "free" plug ins available.... ,
and :
if the cards are the "Mix" series (Mix core , Mix Farm , also D24 and DSP Farm II)
and the OS is Mac OS 9,2,2
the good thing to do is unistall the actual pro tools version
and install the Pro Tools TDM V5,1,3
better more if is possible format the hard drive
and then do a new install of the Mac Os 9,2,2 and subsequently the Pro Tools TDM V5,1,3
(low level or old garbage files can create issues)
hope this help ,

for more specific helps about setting up the system correctly
post some image about how the Pro Tools cards are installed
inside the G4,

if you want to try yourself to fix
here also some doc about
cheers

Ps:
Use the HD24 (if the "VII" ) as AD converter connected to the Pro tools Adat Bridge interface if the 24 bit version
is not bad thing at 24 bit 48khz , and just as well try to compare how it sound with 882-20 , 888-24 ,(although Apogee are on another level) ,
and , with Pro Tools TDM , Mix or HD ,
there is no much sense mix on an external digital mixer .
 
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dogooder

Member
Hi ,
so :
are the cards installed correctly with ribbon bridge cable ?
are the interfaces corectly connected to cards + right cascade world clock set ?
you can also try to connect only 1 interface to the pro tools card n° 1 for test ,
(if Pro Tools software loading is correct it ask the hardware setup)

First off, thanx for the response and any help given.
I don't know if the cards are installed correctly. I just used the cables that came with it and fit the 882/20s, the adat bridge and the cards that are installed. I tried swapping them back and forth in case one card is for the adat bridge and one card is for the 882s . Neither card has light pipe I/0s on them. There is only one light pipe connection in the Mac and that is on a totally different card. I haven't figured out how to look in the control panel yet to see if it will tell me what hardware is in there. It has been 22 yrs since I touched a Mac OS. I found the control panel but didn't see the hardware config on it. I asked my stepson who is a Mac freak and he gave me instructions but I haven't gotten back to it yet and this Mac is old and may not work with the info he gave me.
I will have to look into all of that. I opened the Mac up but it is crowded int there and really couldn't read the cards. I will go back in with my machinist dental mirror
so I can get a better look. I was a class A machinist CNC programmer before I retired. Much of what you are asking is greek to me, I have not kept up for years. It also came with a large PCI expansion housing with one card in it. I opened that up but couldn't read the card so don't know what it is or how it was hooked up, I will have to go in their again with the dental mirror and give a look see.
As I stated previously though, when I first tried to open protools it wouldn't open and told me I had to have hardware hooked up. I hooked up one 882/20 and the Adat bridge with cables that came with it and then I was able to open the protools, so I was guessing I hooked it up correctly but that is just a guess. Pro tools seems functional, I was able to arm tracks, open edit windows, use the hand and pencil tools etc. I think the world clock for protools was set at 48k when I checked the setup menu. I don't know how to check the 882s and figured they would slave to protools? I started reading the installed help instructions but haven't gotten that far yet. I know everything was fully functional when it was being used with a Souncraft Ghost 32 channel mixer in a stuido. I sold the mixer, it was way to big for what I was doing. There is also a ton of other software in there from the era, wavelab, various plugins and other utilities.

 

Hmrc

Member
More helps about is not a problem ,
but images about the cards (for know the type they are)
and the order/sequence how are them placed inside the G4
are essentials for proceed
...also screenshots (press : command+shift+3) about the hardware setup ,
(hardware setup is where the in-out interfaces have to be configured
according to what card them are connected ,
and to match what is cinfigured in the in-out settings section (that can be also saved end loaded when required)
then selected-assigned as in-out on any channel on the Pro Tools sessions tracks)
cheers
 
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rob aylestone

Well-known member
If you tried to use protools without the external hardware, I wonder if it is still trying to communicate with the apple sound system when you are running protools - is all the routing actually sending stuff to and from the hardware? Can you replay anything - as in loading a file into protools and then getting that audio out of the box? Record isn't working but is playback?
 

Hmrc

Member
If you tried to use protools without the external hardware, I wonder if it is still trying to communicate with the apple sound system when you are running protools - is all the routing actually sending stuff to and from the hardware? Can you replay anything - as in loading a file into protools and then getting that audio out of the box? Record isn't working but is playback?
Correct !!
if Pro Tools is the TDM version (Nubus , Pci , Mix or HD) and cards + interfaces are not correctly installed and configured
it do not run !!!

on the Mac OS 9 the only one Pro Tools that run with the Mac audio ports is the Pro Tools free V5
only 8 audio tracks and various midi tracks , also Soft Sample Cell (Digidesign virtual sampler) run on it ,
RTAS only plug ins and V Instruments ,

The Pro Tools LE V5 for Mac OS 9 require Digi 001 , Mbox V1 , or Audiomedia cards ,
and the plug ins and V Instruments compatible are RTAS.

... And just as well :
Pro Tools for Mac OS 9 have an optional extension that can be installed
in the system , and that have to be selected in the Mac OS audio panel options (inside control panel)
it permit to stream the audio output from the Mac OS with the Pro Tools in out interface
on the master LR out settled in the in-out settings option of Pro Tools software ,
but also normally this extension send as default the Mac audio out to the output 1-2 of the first in-out interface
connected to Pro Tools card N°1 .

cheers.
 
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dogooder

Member
If you tried to use protools without the external hardware, I wonder if it is still trying to communicate with the apple sound system when you are running protools - is all the routing actually sending stuff to and from the hardware? Can you replay anything - as in loading a file into protools and then getting that audio out of the box? Record isn't working but is playback?
As stated, when I first tried to run ProTools, I received an alarm that it would not open unless hardware was hooked up. Since I knew the system worked without a problem when previously used and I had no Idea how to use it, I proceeded as follows. I took one of the 882/20 I/Os and the one Adat bridge, and using the cables that fit the ports, connected them to the Mac. I then fired everything, opened ProTools, no alarm. There was only the desktop still showing. I then searched around and found a test program, clicked on that, it opened in ProTools. Then hit the help menu, and went around exploring. I was still using the premise that since everything seemed to be working, arming tracks, opening all windows etc, that all the world clocks etc. were still set correctly. When I tried sending a signal into the 882/20 ins and outs, using either my guitar or mixer the 882s showed no incoming signal at all? I would assume that they would not even have to be hooked to anything to show an incoming signal but that assumption could be easily wrong. As for screen shots etc, the Mac is not hooked to the internet and I still have spent such little time on it that it would just be quicker to take a digital camera shot (I don't own or carry a phone) of whats on screen, run upstairs, dump it on my laptop and upload then download here. Time wise, when I go downstairs most of it is devoted to completing tracks on my HD 24 and then I spend about fifteen to thirty minutes checking out the Mac and ProTools and reading the help manual. I am going to try to find out exactly what cards are in it and the extension cab when I go down today and get back at ya. I do know for a fact that it ran smoothly when running previously in the studio I inherited it from when it was hooked up correctly. I looked at the settings, which I didn't know much about, but didn't change anything. Without showing an incoming signal on the 882 I can't possibly take the next step and that is the first hurdle I have to overcome. Shouldn't the 882 show and incoming signal on the LEDs regardless of hookup, I don't even know that? Once again, thanx for the help and advice.
 
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Hmrc

Member
As stated, when I first tried to run ProTools, I received an alarm that it would not open unless hardware was hooked up. Since I knew the system worked without a problem when previously used and I had no Idea how to use it, I proceeded as follows. I took one of the 882/20 I/Os and the one Adat bridge, and using the cables that fit the ports, connected them to the Mac. I then fired everything, opened ProTools, no alarm. There was only the desktop still showing. I then searched around and found a test program, clicked on that, it opened in ProTools. Then hit the help menu, and went around exploring. I was still using the premise that since everything seemed to be working, arming tracks, opening all windows etc, that all the world clocks etc. were still set correctly. When I tried sending a signal into the 882/20 ins and outs, using either my guitar or mixer the 882s showed no incoming signal at all? I would assume that they would not even have to be hooked to anything to show an incoming signal but that assumption could be easily wrong. As for screen shots etc, the Mac is not hooked to the internet and I still have spent such little time on it that it would just be quicker to take a digital camera shot (I don't own or carry a phone) of whats on screen, run upstairs, dump it on my laptop and upload then download here. Time wise, when I go downstairs most of it is devoted to completing tracks on my HD 24 and then I spend about fifteen to thirty minutes checking out the Mac and ProTools and reading the help manual. I am going to try to find out exactly what cards are in it and the extension cab when I go down today and get back at ya. I do know for a fact that it ran smoothly when running previously in the studio I inherited it from when it was hooked up correctly. I looked at the settings, which I didn't know much about, but didn't change anything. Without showing an incoming signal on the 882 I can't possibly take the next step and that is the first hurdle I have to overcome. Shouldn't the 882 show and incoming signal on the LEDs regardless of hookup, I don't even know that? Once again, thanx for the help and advice.
So :
when you put a signal in the input of the Pro Tools IN-out interface (and if it is power on)
the signal presence led normally blink ,

if the mac is a G4 it have USB ports ,
then the screenshots can be copied from the Mac to an USB pen drive
and then to any othe r computer connected to the web ,

about the Adat Bridge interface if it is part of a Pro Tools System
it have to be placed in a proper position if other iterfaces like 888 , 888-24 , 882 , 882-20 , 1622 ,
are also part of the rig ,

otherwise simply connect it to the Pro Tools card N°1
(if a world clock master unit is not part of the rig)

cheers.
 

dogooder

Member
Went downstairs, hooked the HD24 into the ADAT bridge via lighpipe. Opened protools, armed tracks 1-8, hit record then play on the HD24.
All signals coming thruough. Ran through recording all 8 tracks, Saved them as a session on the desktop. Closed out of protools. Opened protools back up
and opened the session I had saved, opened the edit and transport window. Hit play and all the waveforms etc were there playing. I don't have any output hooked up
yet so not sure about that. That is next after I solve the mystery of the 882. I tried again with the 882 and no go. Here, now that I think about it, in the hardware setup it shows Card A enabled. There are two cards in the Mac, I couldn't read the name but all the chips are labeled digidesign. Both cards are hooked together with a ribbon cable with two more unconnected for more boards I guess. I am wondering if I switch to card B if the 882 will start showing a signal. I will check that next time I go down.
There was nothing on the front of the ADAT Bridge to let me know it was passing a signal as far as I could tell. I have some shots I took with the camera I am going to attach but some of them are pretty blurry. In the hardware it showed the cards and enabled. I can tell the settings if they are unreadable.
It showed all the protools and digidesign software as installed.
 

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dogooder

Member
Went back down turned everything on and plugged the output of the ADAT bridge into the input of the HD24 and back to the board and everything played back fine except for one thing. Channel 1, which is the kick drum, was just feeding back. Maybe I had the input too high when I dropped it, not sure, will have to look into it. At least I have the ADAT ins and outs to the board and back working and know that protools is working. Step no. 1 complete.
Thanx to All
Dragonworks
 

dogooder

Member
Hooked up the 882 again, 8 channels in. I don't know what I did differently but I could see a signal on tracks 1-2 but none on the rest. I could not get protools
to record the signals? I noticed it say on the front of the 882, 1-2 input. How do you get 8 channels in. There are 8 inputs on the back; I would believe
you can get eight channels in? I tried changing the input from analogue to digital but no go. I tried changing to card B, no go.
 
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Hmrc

Member
hardware setup and i-o settings, updated ?
as the card 1 is a Mix card , connect to it the Adat bridge with all 16 channels (2 cables+ Y cable)
then the 882-20 to card 2 , and do not forget the world clock cable from Adat bridge to 882-20 ,
and update the settings on the software .
cheers
 

dogooder

Member
hardware setup and i-o settings, updated ?
as the card 1 is a Mix card , connect to it the Adat bridge with all 16 channels (2 cables+ Y cable)
then the 882-20 to card 2 , and do not forget the world clock cable from Adat bridge to 882-20 ,
and update the settings on the software .
cheers
Will give that a shot. I am not sure what a you mean by a Y cable? I can connect the ADAT bridges 16 channels to the HD24 via 4 light pipes. On the back of the ADAT bridge I have the optical I/Os which are hooked up to the HD24. Two, I think, RS232 ports, group A&B, A is hooked up to the card, SPDIF out, two analog outs and, two AES ports, the clocks in and outs. Should I have both Group A&B hooked up? I think it came with a Y cable to do something like that. It came with a lot of cables and four 882/20s so I am not sure what they were all for. I think he had four 882s because he was running a 32 channel setup, I don't really no and I can't ask him. I am not sure how to update the settings on the software or where to do that? The protools reference guide should give me the info I need to figure it out I would think? Going to the lake today with my daughter so today is out. I have to go look at kitchen cabs tomorrow so that is probably out. I will get to it this weekend. I think I said somewhere that while I am down in the basement most of my time is spent at the board trying to record piano and pedal steel guitar, one reason being that I am not that proficient with them and it takes a million takes to get it right, then I don't like it and start over again. I was thinking of recording the piano in midi so I could repair the damage but I am too much of a purist and feel I am cheating. I don't have that luxury with the pedal steel.
Once again, thanx for the help, it is appreciated.
 

dogooder

Member
The ADAT bridge would probably suffice if it could handle 24 tracks but it will only handle 16 via the light pipes and I have 8 more channels to deal with. I don't know why he had the ADAT bridge, the board he was using wasn't digital and he was going directly into the computer which only has one light pipe port. There is also a ProTools Video Slave Driver unit that I don't know what he was using it for?
 
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Hmrc

Member
The ADAT bridge would probably suffice if it could handle 24 tracks but it will only handle 16 via the light pipes and I have 8 more channels to deal with. I don't know why he had the ADAT bridge, the board he was using wasn't digital and he was going directly into the computer which only has one light pipe port. There is also a ProTools Video Slave Driver unit that I don't know what he was using it for?
The Adat bridge is so cool in the case you have to transfer and mixdown sessions from other daw format like the vst based ,
(...mostly the old vst that was not the top for final mixdown , because of the digital data compression....)

apart audio tracks transfer from old ADAT digital tape recorders ,
an example about can be transfer a session from a vst rig premixed and edited inside a laptop daw
with a firewire audio interface like MOTU or RME that have ADAT ports ,
to the Pro Tools TDM rig for very better result ,

the laptop play and Pro Tools record ,

another example is have some vst virtual instrument (synth , sampler , etc...)
integrated to Pro Tools ,
then a laptop with a vst setup that receive the midi from Pro Tools or also other DAW Sequencer TDM compatible like Logic ,
and send the audio generated by the vst virtual instruments to Pro Tools through ADAT optical connections ,

in the Pro Tools you have to set the audio channel in the mixer as aux input for real time monitoring
and if you want to record it , you have to set the output of the aux input channel in an available bus
then on a channel track select the input from the bus set as out on the aux input channel where the virtual instrument signal
arrive from the vst external setup connected to the Adat bridge ,

and if an Hardware synth or sampler have to be connected directy to the Pro Tools TDM rig
the way / routing is approximately equal
the difference is only that an analog input like for example from the 882-20 have to be selected
as input on the Pro Tools mixer Aux in channel .

Normally the external hardware or virtual vst synth , samplers, etc... ,
are not recorded as audio track ,
but are left to play in real time even when processed with Pro Tools plug ins placed in the insert or routed in send return ,

as the Pro Tools bounce get all signals routed to the master channel

although many still record them (dry and processed) for have a complete backup of the song/s
ready In case of subsequent remix-re edit needs ,

the Video Slave Driver is required for acquire / sync video material from old video devices like Betamax etc..

cheers
 
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