Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

SEARCH
the Forums & Piano World

This custom search works much better than the built in one and allows searching older posts.
(ad 125) Sweetwater - Digital Keyboards & Other Gear
Digital Pianos at Sweetwater
(ad) Pianoteq
Latest Pianoteq add-on instrument: U4 upright piano
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
PianoSupplies.com (150)
Piano Accessories Music Related Gifts Piano Tuning Equipment Piano Moving Equipment
We now offer Gift Certificates in our online store!
(ad) Estonia Piano
Estonia Piano
Quick Links to Useful Stuff
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers
*Organs

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano Accessories
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Piano Books
*Piano Art, Pictures, & Posters
*Directory/Site Map
*Contest
*Links
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Screen Saver
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords
Topic Options
#2235945 - 02/22/14 12:08 PM Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review
jarosujo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/12/12
Posts: 237
Loc: Slovakia
Hello,
I just received Intel NUC mini PC few days ago and would like to share my experience using it with Pianoteq.
It is model DC3217BY, which has i3 CPU inside. It costs new 140 as barebone system (no RAM, SSD, wifi). I bought it one month old (so basically new) with 4GB RAM, 32GB SSD and wifi/BT card inside for 190 .

Installation:
When I saw it first, I was shocked how small it was. Installation of Windows 8.1 Pro from USB drive went smooth and fast, 10 minutes and system was ready. After that I installed Pianoteq and drivers for my external usb sound card Kontakt Audio 2. That was all, I decided to use it as pure "sound module" for PT, I even disabled wifi/BT card. Boot time is excellent, it takes 13 seconds from pressing power button to desktop screen with icons on Win 8.1.

Usage:
The way I use it is very simple - no mouse, no keyboard, no monitor. All I do is I press the button on the top to wake it up or put it back to sleep state. It takes about 2-3 seconds from pressing to button until I can play. It is about the same time it takes my Kawai CL36 to start after pressing power button. You can even keep it idle 24/7, as the power consumption is very low (more below). In case of some problem (power shortage...), I set PT to start automatically after reboot. You can also use remote desktop from other PC/phone/tablet in case needed.

Sound quality:
Thanks to external usb sound card Kontakt Audio 2 it is excellent. This sound card is so small that you can wear it in your jeans pocket. Connecting is very easy, usb cable to NUC, one stereo jack to headphones and other one to powered monitors. It has also power connector, but it is not needed with NUC. NUC doesn't have separate audio output connector, sound output goes through hdmi or thunderbolt (I think). I am not sure about sound quality/latency when using on-board audio, but these are quite good these days.

Latency:
I set sample rate to 48000 Hz, process buffer 64 samples, USB buffer 1 ms. Total latency is 5.8 ms, which is very good, basically I can not feel any delay at all. Kontakt Audio 2 drivers are rock solid, I never had any issue with them.

PT performance regarding CPU:
CPU used in my NUC is Core i3 low power 3217U version, frequency 1,8 GHz. It runs at 800 Mhz when idle. In PT I use D4 bright preset, stereophonic sound and small hall reverb.
First I just played myself few easy songs - no problems. Then I downloaded Moonlight Sonata midi and played it with pedal down all the time. Polyphony usage reached about 80 and CPU usage was about 50%. Than I tried He is a Pirate midi and played it again with sustain pedal down all the time - polyphony usage reached 223, CPU usage at about 80-90% and again no problems (no red lines) at all. No dropouts, nothing. I am really surprised how well CPU handled even that last crazy midi test.

NUC Power consuption:
Sleep state - 0W (well, other reviews state about 2.5W)
Idle in Win 8.1 - 11W
Me playing with PT - 14W
Midi played in PT (crazy one) - 18W
Not sure why my device didn't measure anything in sleep state, I just guess it was really really low :-)

Final conclusion:
Yes, you can buy laptop for about 350, which has display, similar CPU, 500GB HDD, keyboard, touchpad... But I don't need any of that.
I just need something cheap, small, noiseless and power efficient, which delivers Pianoteq sound to my Headphones/Monitors in 2-3 seconds after pressing power button.
And NUC delivers all of that.

P.S. Sorry for poor quality pictures, my hdmi-dvi cable is damaged, so there are strange colors and other artifacts.

NUC and Kontakt Audio 2 - both of them are very small.



Total latency 5.8ms means no noticeable delay at all.



No dropouts when playing crazy midi with sustain pedal down all the time(223 polyphony). Audio load (CPU usage)about 80-90%.



11.7W power consuption when idle in Win 8.1 (about 14-15W when playing with Pianoteq)
_________________________
Yamaha NP-V80 (sold)
Yamaha DGX640 (sold)
Kawai CL-36
Pianoteq Standard + Intel NUC DC3217BY + Sennheiser HD598 + Fostex PM0.4n + NI Audio 2

Top
(ads) Sweetwater / PR /Roland
Your Next Keyboard is at Sweetwater

Pearl River World's Best Selling Piano

Click Here


#2236185 - 02/22/14 11:32 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
Kawai James Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 8851
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Thanks for the review!

I'm very interested in this kind of tiny PC device - I think it would be ideal for modding and placing inside a VPC1 to prepare a standalone, all-in-one instrument.

Cheers,
James
x
_________________________
Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.

"Richard, none of us could forget you have a CLP-990." - EssBrace, 2014

Top
#2236201 - 02/23/14 01:43 AM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: Kawai James]
Charles Cohen Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 1164
Loc: Richmond, BC, Canada
Thank you for all this useful information!

The most interesting thing (to me) is that a straight Intel PC -- no special hardware, no DSP chip, no special O/S -- has enough computing power to handle a full-scale, high-polyphony piano simulation.

And that you built it without any problems with latency, and no problems with drivers.

Perhaps Pianoteq should be selling those boxes, pre-programmed and pre-packaged ?

. Charles

PS -- I saw my first Intel NUC a week ago. I was impressed. A friend is using them in a fleet of tugboats, replacing all the laptop PC's.

Top
#2236224 - 02/23/14 03:09 AM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
Dwscamel Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/22/13
Posts: 448
Props to Intel! The NUC shows how far we've come.

Top
#2236424 - 02/23/14 03:26 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
CountSmith Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/01/13
Posts: 17
I dedicated an old small desktop pc to my piano. One thing that is annoying is that the midi usb cable is not recognized in reaper or kontakt when I turn on the computer from sleep. In reaper I assign a keyboard short cut which resets the midi device so I at least need a keyboard connected to the computer. It's still awesome though. Like your set up, it only takes 2-3 seconds to go from sleep to being able to play.

Top
#2236433 - 02/23/14 03:49 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: Kawai James]
jeffreyfranz Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/12/14
Posts: 34
Loc: Central California
James, that's an excellent idea, one that had not occurred to me as yet.

Originally Posted By: Kawai James
Thanks for the review!

I'm very interested in this kind of tiny PC device - I think it would be ideal for modding and placing inside a VPC1 to prepare a standalone, all-in-one instrument.

Cheers,
James
x

Top
#2236459 - 02/23/14 05:09 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: CountSmith]
jarosujo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/12/12
Posts: 237
Loc: Slovakia
Originally Posted By: CountSmith
I dedicated an old small desktop pc to my piano. One thing that is annoying is that the midi usb cable is not recognized in reaper or kontakt when I turn on the computer from sleep.


I believe similar problem happened to me few times on Win7. I think disconnecting usb cable from PC and connecting it back helped.
_________________________
Yamaha NP-V80 (sold)
Yamaha DGX640 (sold)
Kawai CL-36
Pianoteq Standard + Intel NUC DC3217BY + Sennheiser HD598 + Fostex PM0.4n + NI Audio 2

Top
#2236731 - 02/24/14 10:44 AM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
karlosserio Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 27
Loc: Lisbon, Portugal
Thank you for all the information provided in this thread. I'm planning a similar build with a NUC i5 but running vintage d. Could you try to test your rig with vintage d or a similar VSTi?

Thanks in advance smile

Top
#2236796 - 02/24/14 01:20 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: Kawai James]
lolatu Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/01/13
Posts: 390
Loc: UK
Originally Posted By: Kawai James
I'm very interested in this kind of tiny PC device - I think it would be ideal for modding and placing inside a VPC1 to prepare a standalone, all-in-one instrument.

Or just maybe, a piano company could produce and sell such a thing ready made! (I know, crazy!)
_________________________
Kawai CA95 / Roland FP3 / Pianoteq Stage / Tannoy Reveal Active / Sony MDR-7506 / Steinberg UR22 / K&M 18810

Top
#2236983 - 02/24/14 07:14 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: lolatu]
Kawai James Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 8851
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Originally Posted By: lolatu
Or just maybe, a piano company could produce and sell such a thing ready made! (I know, crazy!)


Well, we already tried that several years ago with the DP1 (modern-looking grand piano shaped DP with a Linux-based OS running custom piano libraries). It was very expensive.

Unfortunately, it's impractical for digital piano companies to include off-the-shelf PC hardware inside their DPs. However, I believe a half-way solution could be found, whereby the DP manufacturer provides the ability for a small motherboard to be added by the user and/or dealer.

Cheers,
James
x
_________________________
Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.

"Richard, none of us could forget you have a CLP-990." - EssBrace, 2014

Top
#2237072 - 02/24/14 09:18 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
khopin Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/17/13
Posts: 50
Loc: Uruguay
Hi jarosujo
Very interesting review.
Just a very easy question, how do you connect your CL36 to the NUC, I suppose throughout a MIDI to USB interface?
In that case, what model do you have? I got one but a note sounds every time I press the sustain pedal.
Thank you
_________________________
Current: Kawai CN34, KRK6400
Previous: Kawai CL36, Casio PX-100, Upright AP

Top
#2237122 - 02/24/14 10:31 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: Kawai James]
lolatu Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/01/13
Posts: 390
Loc: UK
Originally Posted By: Kawai James
Unfortunately, it's impractical for digital piano companies to include off-the-shelf PC hardware inside their DPs. However, I believe a half-way solution could be found, whereby the DP manufacturer provides the ability for a small motherboard to be added by the user and/or dealer.

I agree that having a slot-in solution would be much better, not least because the virtual pianos would go obsolete very quickly and that would a waste of all the other hardware.

The controller side could be a keyboard + power supply + USB audio interface + MIDI controller type knobs for adjusting the virtual piano (VP) parameters. I'm in two minds whether you need a big screen, or whether it would be enough to just have knob labels like on the Novation Remote range.

The VP cards, produced by third parties, would consist of the motherboard + SSD + preconfigured software. I guess it would be Linux-based, but the conroller can be agnostic about that, because the only connections it needs are power and USB (audio + MIDI). The controller knobs would communicate with the VP via MIDI.

Unlike the DP1, I'm thinking more of a slab-type controller that is affordable by anyone. The keyboard you use doesn't need to be as expensive as the VPC1, but you could have two versions like with the MP6 and MP10. It would be cheaper than those, because I guess what you have in the controller is something pretty much like those except without the sounds.

Most of the components are already available fairly cheaply, and I think the main work is in polishing the system up and making it as simple to use as possble. Instead of 7 or 8 components that you have to join up and configure, you'd just need the controller and a VP card, which plug together in a seamless and easliy luggable whole. The whole selling point would be the tidiness and ease of use.
_________________________
Kawai CA95 / Roland FP3 / Pianoteq Stage / Tannoy Reveal Active / Sony MDR-7506 / Steinberg UR22 / K&M 18810

Top
#2237128 - 02/24/14 10:46 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
Kawai James Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/06/07
Posts: 8851
Loc: Hamamatsu, Japan
Totally agree. wink

James
x
_________________________
Employed by Kawai Japan, however the opinions I express are my own.
Nord Electro 3 fan & occasional rare groove player.

"Richard, none of us could forget you have a CLP-990." - EssBrace, 2014

Top
#2237221 - 02/25/14 03:49 AM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
Qbert Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/29/10
Posts: 328
Loc: Italy
Originally Posted By: jarosujo

Final conclusion:
Yes, you can buy laptop for about 350, which has display, similar CPU, 500GB HDD, keyboard, touchpad... But I don't need any of that.
I just need something cheap, small, noiseless and power efficient, which delivers Pianoteq sound to my Headphones/Monitors in 2-3 seconds after pressing power button.

Laptop or tablet (Surface?) gives you also the ability to change PT sounds and parameters. With your solution it must be a bit uncomfortable to achieve that! Maybe, an external midi control surface (iCon?) could be useful but still you miss any visual feedback.


Edited by Qbert (02/25/14 03:50 AM)
_________________________
GEM Promega 3 (sold) - Yamaha CLP 170 (sold) - Acuna88 (sold) - Kawai VPC1 + BK7m

Top
#2237234 - 02/25/14 05:42 AM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: khopin]
jarosujo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/12/12
Posts: 237
Loc: Slovakia
Originally Posted By: khopin
Hi jarosujo
Very interesting review.
Just a very easy question, how do you connect your CL36 to the NUC, I suppose throughout a MIDI to USB interface?
In that case, what model do you have? I got one but a note sounds every time I press the sustain pedal.
Thank you


I have this MIDI-USB cable:
http://www.alza.sk/premiumcord-usb-midi-d249597.htm#popis
It's in Slovak language, but at least you can see the picture :-) Price 19, works without problems. No drivers needed.
_________________________
Yamaha NP-V80 (sold)
Yamaha DGX640 (sold)
Kawai CL-36
Pianoteq Standard + Intel NUC DC3217BY + Sennheiser HD598 + Fostex PM0.4n + NI Audio 2

Top
#2237476 - 02/25/14 02:30 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: karlosserio]
jarosujo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/12/12
Posts: 237
Loc: Slovakia
Originally Posted By: karlosserio
Thank you for all the information provided in this thread. I'm planning a similar build with a NUC i5 but running vintage d. Could you try to test your rig with vintage d or a similar VSTi?

Thanks in advance smile

Sorry but I don't have any sampled library anymore. Once I tried Pianoteq, there is no way coming back for me smile
_________________________
Yamaha NP-V80 (sold)
Yamaha DGX640 (sold)
Kawai CL-36
Pianoteq Standard + Intel NUC DC3217BY + Sennheiser HD598 + Fostex PM0.4n + NI Audio 2

Top
#2237558 - 02/25/14 05:35 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
lolatu Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/01/13
Posts: 390
Loc: UK
What settings are you using in Pianoteq? I just bought it myself.
_________________________
Kawai CA95 / Roland FP3 / Pianoteq Stage / Tannoy Reveal Active / Sony MDR-7506 / Steinberg UR22 / K&M 18810

Top
#2237637 - 02/25/14 07:59 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
sullivang Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/05/09
Posts: 2178
Loc: Sydney, Australia
Originally Posted By: karlosserio
Could you try to test your rig with vintage d or a similar VSTi?


It'll work, but if it doesn't, I'll eat my own hair

Greg.

Top
#2237807 - 02/26/14 05:32 AM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: lolatu]
jarosujo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/12/12
Posts: 237
Loc: Slovakia
Originally Posted By: lolatu
What settings are you using in Pianoteq? I just bought it myself.

I prefer brighter sound, so I use D4 Bright preset. Small hall reverb, stereophonic. Pedal and hammer noise -4 dB. Velocity curve similar to default, just slightly moved "up", specially in 100~127 range. Once I upgrade to Standard version, I will play more with setup, specially with Hammer hardness and Resonance.
_________________________
Yamaha NP-V80 (sold)
Yamaha DGX640 (sold)
Kawai CL-36
Pianoteq Standard + Intel NUC DC3217BY + Sennheiser HD598 + Fostex PM0.4n + NI Audio 2

Top
#2237812 - 02/26/14 05:49 AM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
karlosserio Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 27
Loc: Lisbon, Portugal
Oh... frown
I think Vintage D will work with the NUC i5 or even i3, I was just curious to see the limitations.

Top
#2237814 - 02/26/14 05:51 AM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
karlosserio Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/26/12
Posts: 27
Loc: Lisbon, Portugal
I already have an RME Fireface Ucx so I just need the NUC.
But I can't decide between the i3 or the i5.

Top
#2237828 - 02/26/14 07:52 AM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
In A Silent Way Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/25/13
Posts: 75
Very interesting review.

Meanwhile the post above shows the potential issue with this approach : why not a core i7 instead of an i5, and why not a 240Gb SSD, with a screen, a wifi dongle, a mouse, a browser, and the ability to load one of the too many beautiful piano samples from the Internet, and after all a sequencer would be great, and that could be used as well to watch movies if it were connected to a second screen, etc.

Where do you draw the line today, where do you draw the line for the entire lifetime of the NUC with the software upgrades to come inevitably, and how do you stop wandering for an upgrade, a new trick to learn to this pony , how do you refrain from plugging the interface again to tweak the sound, etc., just like with the old scheme you were supposed to break for good?

I know what I'm up to when it comes to fixing things that aren't broken, and in the real situation I doubt very much this could suffice. The time invested in the tweaking would be longer than the time playing actually the piano, again and like before..

But if you are new to computer music and are able to stop touching the thing once it's set up then it's fine, although it still consumes 11W/h in idle which is a large amount of energy over the year if you think about it, it's the same price as a GEM RP-X for instance and the sound won't be much better but with bugs, random dropouts, crashes, like everywhere else. And then what do you do with your existing computer that would sell for nothing and would also be powerful enough for the next 5 years consuming its 250W/h? You just spent 200-300 more to do the same thing with no more use of the old unsellable machine..

So in my view the right answer still might be a better hardware piano expander, or again a small laptop powerful enough to do that and many more things.

Top
#2237937 - 02/26/14 12:31 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: In A Silent Way]
CountSmith Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 07/01/13
Posts: 17
Originally Posted By: In A Silent Way
Very interesting review.

Meanwhile the post above shows the potential issue with this approach : why not a core i7 instead of an i5, and why not a 240Gb SSD, with a screen, a wifi dongle, a mouse, a browser, and the ability to load one of the too many beautiful piano samples from the Internet, and after all a sequencer would be great, and that could be used as well to watch movies if it were connected to a second screen, etc.

Where do you draw the line today, where do you draw the line for the entire lifetime of the NUC with the software upgrades to come inevitably, and how do you stop wandering for an upgrade, a new trick to learn to this pony , how do you refrain from plugging the interface again to tweak the sound, etc., just like with the old scheme you were supposed to break for good?

I know what I'm up to when it comes to fixing things that aren't broken, and in the real situation I doubt very much this could suffice. The time invested in the tweaking would be longer than the time playing actually the piano, again and like before..

But if you are new to computer music and are able to stop touching the thing once it's set up then it's fine, although it still consumes 11W/h in idle which is a large amount of energy over the year if you think about it, it's the same price as a GEM RP-X for instance and the sound won't be much better but with bugs, random dropouts, crashes, like everywhere else. And then what do you do with your existing computer that would sell for nothing and would also be powerful enough for the next 5 years consuming its 250W/h? You just spent 200-300 more to do the same thing with no more use of the old unsellable machine..

So in my view the right answer still might be a better hardware piano expander, or again a small laptop powerful enough to do that and many more things.


I think the purpose of a set up like this is so that you don't spend all your time tweaking settings. It's like having a normal digital piano but with a better sound generator. Maybe you enjoy tweaking settings all the time, but if I do that, I spend too much time adjusting everything and much less time actually playing.

Also, he said the sleep power was 2.5 W. In my area, electricity costs ~0.06$/kWh. So that ends up being a total of $1.30 of electricity per year. Adding one hour at 15W per day adds a cost of $0.25 so cost of electricity isn't such a big issue.

Top
#2237985 - 02/26/14 02:11 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
jarosujo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/12/12
Posts: 237
Loc: Slovakia
Similar electricity prices over here 0.06/kWh. So my NUC costs me less than 2 per year for electricity. Even if it was running Pianoteq 24/7, it would be less than 8 per year.
_________________________
Yamaha NP-V80 (sold)
Yamaha DGX640 (sold)
Kawai CL-36
Pianoteq Standard + Intel NUC DC3217BY + Sennheiser HD598 + Fostex PM0.4n + NI Audio 2

Top
#2238292 - 02/27/14 04:18 AM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
In A Silent Way Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/25/13
Posts: 75
Well that's not much of a problem then indeed.

If it runs on an SSD you could also have it to boot and load Pianoteq to your setting in less than 30 seconds certainly.

To me as I said the possible issue, since it's relatively cheap and powerful at the same time, I might soon find I could extend the use of it to start playing more piano sounds on it or synths or multimedia applications etc, and hence I'd find the limitations soon, but the machine would still be worth maybe a ram upgrade at that point, etc., and in the end this cheap entry point would be half as good as what I would end asking from it, and in this regard I would end up needing another one or the next model, not cheap at all on the long run.

Whereas if you can take the time to compare specs and prices you can buy today for a fair price a good laptop you will still be using for all your needs without restriction in 5 to 7 years from now.

Anyway it's nice also to see small interfaces with the nowadays 24bits standard because it's really shocking in the shops in 2014 you can't find anything fundamentally better than a soundblaster16 within the 100 price tag... So about this NI Traktor Audio 2 interface, a few questions, how silent is it, any electronic noise, hiss, hum, distortion, at high volume? Any interferences with the 3.5 audio jack and the NUC nearby or the DP or other electromagnetic source?

Top
#2238640 - 02/27/14 05:24 PM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: In A Silent Way]
jarosujo Offline
Full Member

Registered: 03/12/12
Posts: 237
Loc: Slovakia
Originally Posted By: In A Silent Way
So about this NI Traktor Audio 2 interface, a few questions, how silent is it, any electronic noise, hiss, hum, distortion, at high volume? Any interferences with the 3.5 audio jack and the NUC nearby or the DP or other electromagnetic source?


What do you mean how silent it is ? Are there any sound cards which you can hear ?
I didn't find any hiss/hum/interference or any other problem. First I was thinking about Komplete 6, but then I found that sound quality of Audio 2 is same as other more expensive NI sound cards, only difference is number of I/O ports.
_________________________
Yamaha NP-V80 (sold)
Yamaha DGX640 (sold)
Kawai CL-36
Pianoteq Standard + Intel NUC DC3217BY + Sennheiser HD598 + Fostex PM0.4n + NI Audio 2

Top
#2238901 - 02/28/14 07:43 AM Re: Intel NUC + Kontakt Audio 2 + Pianoteq - mini review [Re: jarosujo]
In A Silent Way Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/25/13
Posts: 75
Well if you list music catalogues you'll find most specifically designed audio interfaces below or around 100 are 16bits 48kHz, which is incredible since even motherboard makers have included interfaces capable of 24bits 96kHz for quite a while. So you're mostly buying the code for an asio pilot when you purchase this type of interface (and they are very often only 2x2 so nothing more than a mobo vendor device), which is absurd if you consider the usb latency adding to the equation in regard of the simplicity to just use asio4all with your computer oem onboard audio interface...

Also all these small interfaces, often build with poor interior design and cheap materials, are sometimes prone to shielding issues (the smaller they are by design the less shielded they might be, critical components being packed nearby each others and the plastic box blocking not the fields around, plus cheap connectors with shielding issues in the afferent cables (consumer electronics 3.5 jack cables for instance), shielding issue from the usb bus itself, and so on.)

At low volume with high output clean sources it might do the trick although not as good as the computer onboard interface often, but as soon as you need to raise it up, amplify afterwards or use older/noisier sources, you collect hiss which could add to the electrical grounding hum feeding the usb buzz etc...

With asio4all you could have started to save for a better audio box..

But NI makes decent hardware as it seems and maybe they've managed to cut through these issues with this traktor audio 2 thing, in which case it might be a good option for a secondary setup or your idea with the NUC etc.

I think we've been far enough off this topic so in order not to pollute it with more of my useless considerations we could simply just end on that point and I wish you a happy day to be!

Top

Moderator:  Piano World 
What's Hot!!
LAST CALL - Piano Newsletter Ideas!
-------------------
HOW TO POST PICTURES on the Piano Forums
-------------------
Sharing is Caring!
About the Buttons
-------------------
Forums Rules & Help
-------------------
ADVERTISE
on Piano World

The world's most popular piano web site.
Ad (Seiler/Knabe)
Seiler Pianos
(ad) HAILUN Pianos
Hailun Pianos - Click for More
Sheet Music
(PW is an affiliate)
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad) Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restoration
Who's Online
96 registered (AndrewJCW, Art_Vandelay, AmateurBob, A Guy, 27 invisible), 1281 Guests and 19 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
75498 Members
42 Forums
156113 Topics
2292528 Posts

Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Need advice on buying a Yamaha Disklavier
by Lady
Today at 01:17 AM
Surge protection?
by TX-Bluebonnet
Today at 12:01 AM
Opening up an old Piano
by musicNow
Yesterday at 11:11 PM
Unusual Big Key Depth Yamaha Motif Xs7
by Ivan Jochner
Yesterday at 10:55 PM
Yamaha P255
by pianist.ame
Yesterday at 09:12 PM
(ads by Google)

Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World | Donate | Link to Us | Classifieds |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | Press Room |


copyright 1997 - 2014 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission