n-track 24-bit


If I buy a 24-bit sound card , i will have to go to 24-bit version of n-track? can i record in 16-bits?
I’m going to buy a new soundcard but i don’t think i have enough budget to buy both things the soundcard and the upgrade to n-track 24-bit

Can you recommend a good 16-bit soundcard?


(Choosing between a EMU 0404 or audiophile 2496 at $99)

As far as I know you have to upgrade ntrack to 24 bit when you buy a soundcard 24/96 or 24/192. If you don’t, the programm Ntr reminds you a hundred times after installing your new souncard to update to 24…and might even not work… But maybe you can turn these “reminders” off…
When you update it’s also still able to record 16 bit.
I have an Emu (1212m) and I’m very happy with it but when you buy it remind that it takes some time to learn the software (patchmix)…

Your card should support recording in 44.1 kHz sample rate so you don’t need to upgrade. However, I would if I were you so you have more options. I do all my work in 96/24.

It depends on the soundcards driver. When I bought an EMU1820M to replace my onboard 16 bit card, n-Track refused to RECORD and the option to force 16 bits was disabled. I later found out it was a driver thing as M-Audio users were reporting that they had the option to force 16 bits. Regardless, it IS worth the few $$ to buy the 24 bit license IMO.


I had a similar problem: I upgraded to a 24-bit soundcard (MOTU 828) and it didn’t work well in 16-bit mode so I upgraded. I don’t remember the exact problems.

But it’s worth a try. Meanwhile, doesn’t your computer have a built-in soundcard? If it has a line input, use that, and save up for the 24-bit card and n-Track version. BTW, 24-bit n-Track works just fine with my laptop built-in soundcards. Just not with the 24-bit card in 16-bit mode. Frankly, I suspect that most folks who have a 24-bit card don’t use it in 16-bit mode, so it’s just rather untested and also probably not a priority for the manufacturers. Like putting an RPM governor on your new Fararri!

You definately will need to upgrade for the EMU0404 using ASIO drivers. Like Learjeff I can’t quite remember the problems I was getting and what about the other drivers. Flavio responded to the issues I was having and explained that it was the inflexibility of the card only being able to operate in 24-bit mode. However, now that I have 24-bit N-Track I can force my recorded tracks back to 16-bit. A bit odd

lesete I think you should try to look out for a cheap 24-bit card. One that comes to my mind and that is of a comparable quality as the other big names is ECHO MIA. I know ECHO have stopped making that card but depending upon where you stay you may find some outlet who would have stocked one. Given a low budget (same like every musician on this site) this would fit well for most recording jobs as a one stop station. This can create 8 virtual tracks acting like multiple outputs. You can assign Reason to two or tracks, two tracks for recording vocals, two for the guitar, etc. I use this card and then I bought the WaMi Rack 192X because I wanted to work on two computers on a LAN. One of them has the Echo Mia as the main card (no MIDI). For MIDI you need an additional setup.

M-Audio Audiophile 2496 PCI card goes for $99 just about everywhere now. I recorded my entire first CD using this card… As long as you don’t need to record more than two tracks at the same time, you’ll get a lot of mileage from one of these.