Winner's Rig THE ROK BOX!!

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Manduh Posted: Tue, Dec 13 2011 11:37 PM

For anyone who doesn't know, I was the winner in the "HotHardware Giving Thanks System Sweepstakes" which was sponsored by PCAudioLabs.com

 

My new Rok Box MC 7xs arrived on Monday WOOOHOOOO!!  Big Smile

I got it all unboxed and finally had time to "half azzed" set it up tonight!! Stick out tongue

Unfortunately right now I can't do much on it, I have to get a longer Ethernet cord or wireless internet adapter before I can. I can post some bench marks afterwards. Also my boyfriend's equipment can't connect to, so he says we have to buy a new recording interface with Firewire or USB capability for it.. But soon it will be ready to go.  Once that happens I'll get him to make some tunes for you all to listen to :D

Here are a few pics of the unboxing and the setup... My cat is checking things out in a couple pics, and my boyfriend (Cliff) is in one :D  Looky Looky....

PS sorry if they are a bit blurry, I had the shakes LOL

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Can't forget the HH USB sticks!! I like to call them "Hothardware Winners' Circle Trophies"... for me and my man :D heehee

 

 

 

 

So that's it for now :D Soon I'll have some more goodies to share with you all, benchmarks and MUUUUUSIK!! :D

THANKS AGAIN Dave, Marco, HOTHARDWARE, and of course the great makers of the Rok Box, PCAudioLabs.com!!

 

If you want to learn more about this awesome system check out HotHardware's Rok Box Preview or PCAudioLabs site!

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AKwyn replied on Wed, Dec 14 2011 6:11 AM

Nice shots. If I had to choose my favorite pics, I'd choose the 6th, 9th and 10th pics. Seriously they're that good!

Again, congratulations for winning this PC. You've really deserved to win it.

 

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omegadraco replied on Wed, Dec 14 2011 10:14 AM

Awesome! Manduh... Great shots and I think you guys are really going to enjoy that music box Smile Cliff looks wicked excited. Going to have to buy him a Firewire/USB interface for new years lol.

It's cool that they even threw in a keyboard and mouse combo.

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LBowen replied on Wed, Dec 14 2011 10:29 AM

Congrats again Manduh :)

Looking forward to some benchmarks and especially some kicking beats Music

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rrplay replied on Wed, Dec 14 2011 10:32 AM

Wow  that all sure looks great Manduh !! and Congrats Again to you & Cliff !

totally  dig the pics that you took ...sure looks like the Rok Box has an excellent home & a sweet setup to be enjoyed for sure.Smile

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Congrats :) looks great

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Congrats again! Hope you and he enjoy it! 

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Wow This is a beautiful setup, congrats.

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slugbug replied on Wed, Dec 14 2011 1:15 PM

Wow, they even sent you a free cat Big Smile

Congrats again on winning that awesome machine Manduh.

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Manduh replied on Wed, Dec 14 2011 1:38 PM

Thanks guys!  I was surprised about the keyboard and mouse too, and the HH USB drives. It sure felt like Christmas came early for us!! I don't know if it was nerves or what, but in between taking the pictures I was shaking and throwing up LOL  I was sick most of the day Monday and a bit Tuesday. 

This was just a quick set up, we'll tidy it up more and hide some of the cables etc. It's pretty messy :(

And ya slugbug, I think the cat came out of the box LOL 

Thanks everyone for your kind words!!  I'll be sure to get some benchmarks and music as soon as I can, but be patient I don't have a whole lot of time these days. There's lots of stuff going on to do with a divorce I'm going through, which is 3 years over due lol, but soon it will be done too. Just stress, nerves and a lot of appointments to go to.  Can't wait to get back to the fun stuff in life, like playing around with the Rok Box!!! :D

 

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realneil replied on Wed, Dec 14 2011 3:44 PM

Lots of good pics. As for benchmarks, I don't see why,....

It's a ROC-Box, not a gamer. With the guts that are in it, I'm sure that it's fast.

But it's also something that i would never overclock because you're (possibly) messing with the system's stability when you do it.

It will run just fine at stock speeds and run for many years to come too.

And last, that case it's all in is sweet looking.

 

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AKwyn replied on Wed, Dec 14 2011 4:31 PM

I have to somewhat agree; benchmarks would be mostly useless with a system like this. But we would certainly love to see the muzak.

Bring on the muzak! :)

 

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fancy. Probably too fancy a music machine for me. I still use the miracle piano teaching system when I want to get digital. I do like all that upgrading room for cards though.

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Manduh replied on Wed, Dec 14 2011 7:14 PM

realneil:

Lots of good pics. As for benchmarks, I don't see why,....

It's a ROC-Box, not a gamer. With the guts that are in it, I'm sure that it's fast.

But it's also something that i would never overclock because you're (possibly) messing with the system's stability when you do it.

It will run just fine at stock speeds and run for many years to come too.

And last, that case it's all in is sweet looking.

I agree too. I was thinking about not doing them, but I know a few people are anxious to see them. However they would just be stock results because I'm not about to do any tweaking with the rig at all. All the benchmarks one would need to see are in the HotHardware Preview anyway. So I guess there's no point in doing them :)  The less stuff to install, the better. Cliff wants to keep the Rok Box as purely a music system, he won't even let me install Sims 3 LMAO! Once it's hooked up to the net I'll be playing around on it a bit, whether he wants me to or not HAHAHA!!

And ya, I really like the case. It's sweet and simple. I like the slight brushed metal look to it :) 

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Manduh replied on Sun, Dec 18 2011 12:47 AM

By the sounds of it, I might have a little somethin' somethin' for you guys tomorrow :) Cliff has been playing around with the software and is sooo in love LOL He spent today working on a couple of test projects. I'm hoping he'll have something to post here real soon :) :D

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DDeveaux replied on Sun, Dec 18 2011 4:40 AM

Great to see it went to someone who can really take advantage of it.  Can't wait to hear some tunes!  Congrats to you guys for winning such an awesome audio-based system!

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Manduh replied on Sun, Dec 18 2011 11:03 AM

Thanks DDeveaux!!

Here's a small tune he put together, It actually took him a long time because of learning the new software and checking out the various samples and such

The song was done with the samples included on the Rok Box :D

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Manduh replied on Sun, Dec 18 2011 5:26 PM

I decided to try out some folding on the Rok Box to see how fast it compares to my laptop.  Both are folding WU's with 250000 steps.  After 2 hours I completed 12% on my laptop, vs 36% on the Rok Box. That's a huge difference for sure, but I have to take into account I'm streaming a radio show, using multiple browser tabs and running Comodo on my laptop, whereas the Rok Box is sitting idle - other than the folding. Either way it's getting the job done faster than my crappy lappy does LOL

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Manduh:


Here's a small tune he put together, It actually took him a long time because of learning the new software and checking out the various samples and such

The song was done with the samples included on the Rok Box :D

Awesome, I am very happy this system is going to be used for what it is meant for also.  I am sure we will hear more tunes from Cliff Smile Have fun and keep the music playing.

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rrplay replied on Sun, Dec 18 2011 6:35 PM

Manduh:

Thanks DDeveaux!!

Here's a small tune he put together, It actually took him a long time because of learning the new software and checking out the various samples and such

The song was done with the samples included on the Rok Box :D

yep it sure is  nice of ya to share a nice Sunday am  track to go with the coffee this morning.. I bet it going to take a while to explore all that software can do

No doubt about it ! The Rok Box rig found the right home !

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CDeeter replied on Mon, Dec 19 2011 7:47 AM

Glad you are enjoying the RokBox! Sounds incredible, and you guys have a great setup. Looks like it was meant to be there!

Can't wait to here the finished version :-)

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Manduh replied on Wed, Dec 21 2011 11:56 AM

He proably won't finish that first song, it was more of a test

Here's another tune for you guys... (another playing around test song..
Cliff posted this on his FB yesterday:
"Still messing around with the new system. On this one, I started out with one thing and ended up with something else. Oh well."



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omegadraco replied on Wed, Dec 21 2011 12:59 PM

Sweet seems like it should be in Tron or Star wars :)

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eunoia replied on Wed, Dec 21 2011 1:11 PM

.

...pending.

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CDeeter replied on Wed, Dec 21 2011 4:10 PM

I like it a lot, sounds right up my alley.Smile

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Manduh replied on Wed, Dec 21 2011 8:57 PM

Thanks for all the nice comments guys! Cliff has been reading them too :) 

And actually, his dream was always to be a movie composer! :D

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Aoshi replied on Sun, Dec 25 2011 11:57 PM

Very cool & sweet setup Congrats again!

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Manduh replied on Thu, Jan 19 2012 5:06 PM

Hey just wanted to post a link to a vid Cliff created a bit ago on the Rok Box.

He spliced together a couple different videos found on the net from Batman Arkham City and wrote his own musical score for it

Here's the post he put with the video:

"A musical tribute to my favourite game of all time. I spliced together a couple of different trailers and wrote and recorded my own musical score for it.

*DISCLAIMER* This is NOT the official music from the game. The music is solely my original work and is intended strictly as a demo and a fan tribute to honour a game that I've spent many hours enjoying."

Here's The video:

Feel free to sub to his channel http://www.youtube.com/user/Klif

 

 

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rrplay replied on Thu, Jan 19 2012 6:28 PM

Once again !! Absolutely Ain't  No Doubt About That Rok Bok rig is def in the right hands and sharing some stuff like this is a tribute to this community as well.

Very Nice ! & tell Cliff thanks   

  sounds to me like someone gots some pretty sm Cool th chops -  skilz & a heck of a lotta talent !   Yes

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omegadraco replied on Thu, Jan 19 2012 10:12 PM

Thanks Manduhh :) very cool and sounds great. I agree this piece of HotHardware definitely ended up in the right hands. Tell your BF thanks for sharing his work with us :)

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LBowen replied on Tue, Jan 24 2012 4:35 PM

Very nice!!  I love Arkham City as well; the game is amazing and I'm glad he's having such a fun time with his HotHardware Custom PC :)

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CDeeter replied on Fri, Jan 27 2012 5:21 PM

Hey sorry it took so long to post, been really busy.

Totally awesome video Cliff, the music fits perfectly.

What are some of your favorite patches and samples so far,  and how does this software compare to what you were using? Was it fairly easy to pick up on, or harder that what you were using?

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AKwyn replied on Sat, Jan 28 2012 4:56 AM

That sounds amazing; that could very well be my Batman: Arkham City score if I buy the game. Again, the RokBox certainly went to someone deserving of it; your boyfriend is putting out some pretty impressive music with it.

 

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CliffB replied on Sat, Jan 28 2012 12:24 PM

Hi folks. Many thanks for all the positive feedback.

 

I finally set up an account here. I was a little hesitant because this Manduh's place to hang out and I didn't want to intrude. Also I'm not really as computer savvy as everybody here so I wasn't really sure what I could contribute to your community. I did notice that there's subjects other than computer gear so why not give it a whirl? ;)

 

Instead of having Manduh be the middle person, it's only proper that I respond to your questions myself. Warning: this might be a little long-winded as this is my first post on the forum.

 

A little history on myself.: I've been a musician for about 30 years. I'm self-taught and have never taken any lessons. Just spent hours in the local library teaching myself music theory. I started out playing guitar, (acoustic 6-string and 12-string, electric). Moved on to Bass Guitar then Piano. I've also got my hands on the Mandolin and even Banjo (although both of those experiences were pretty brief). I've been into recording music for quite a long time. I bought my first Tascam 4-track cassette recorder and was off to the races. Years later, I managed to get my certification as an Audio Engineer. 24-track 2-Inch tape and hardware outboard gear was the stuff I was cutting my teeth on before I got into home recording on a computer. Some of my Audio Engineering courses were computer based so the transition to digital wasn't that hard.

 

Okay, enough about me. Now onto your questions.

Before getting the RokBox I was using my old trusty Pentium 4 system with 2 gigs of ram. I upgraded the audio card with an Echo Audio Gina 20-bit digital interface and that's pretty much it. I had been using it for years without a hitch. If it ain't broke, why fix it, right? My main recording software was Cakewalk Pro Audio 8 - the predecessor to Sonar which is on the RokBox. There were basically 2 obstacles I had to overcome when using the RokBox. First, the user interface in Sonar was significantly different. Thank god for YouTube. There's some great tutorial vids that got me up and running in no time. Second, the version of Cakewalk Pro Audio I was using was not VST capable. Meaning, I couldn't run software synths and samplers and couldn't record and monitor audio effects in real time.

 

That was never really a problem for me because most of the stuff I was recording was acoustic-based such as guitars, vocals, etc. I did use some synth parts because I have a Roland JV-30 hardware synth that I'd record via external MIDI signals. The only downside about that was that I was limited strictly to the samples that were in the Roland. Now with the introduction of the RokBox, I have a whole new world of synths and samples at my beck and call.

 

So far I'd have to say that my favourite samples that have seen the most use are Cakewalk SI Virtual String section (for some nice sounding orchestral string samples). There's quite a few of the instrument samples in Cakewalk's SoundCenter that I've found quite realistic sounding. The DropZone synth has some excellent ethereal sounding pads and synths that I've found quite fun to play with as well.

 

All in all, it's been a real pleasure having this new system here. Huge thanks to Hot Hardware. My music making experience has become so much more fun and fulfilling with this awesome system.

 

Lastly, thanks once again for all the kind words from everyone in this thread. Reading them definitely encourages me in my home recording endeavors.

 

 

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eunoia replied on Sat, Jan 28 2012 12:55 PM

.

...pending.

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Welcome Cliff the more the merrier :)

Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts on this system and I think I can speak for the HotHardware community that we are happy that this system is going to good use :)


Keep on rocking and maybe one day you will be creating a soundtrack for a game or movie yourself. I can see if happen.

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CliffB replied on Sat, Jan 28 2012 3:38 PM

Thanks again. I'm not sure how much I'll be able to contribute but I'll definitely be lurking around the forum for any opportunity to add an opinion or two. ;)

@ eunoia: the XILS synth is a monster! Even the SE version has me scratching my head most of the time. What I've been doing is loading up presets and then tweaking them, just to wade into the pool a little bit. So far, I think I'm about ankle-deep. LOL  Once again, I've always been more of an acoustic musician so the whole world of filters and oscillators is a little daunting.

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CliffB replied on Sat, Jan 28 2012 9:13 PM

I have a couple of more tunes for anybody who's interested.
This first one is basically a dance tune. I know the term "dance tune" is pretty generic but considering that there's probably a hundred different types like Trance and House, etc, I'm not quite sure where to classify it. Dance Tune works for me. :D

Here's another little ballad idea I had rolling around in my head. Nothing particularly earth shattering.

All the samples and synths you hear came with the RokBox.

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AKwyn replied on Sun, Jan 29 2012 8:40 AM

CliffB:
the XILS synth is a monster! Even the SE version has me scratching my head most of the time. What I've been doing is loading up presets and then tweaking them, just to wade into the pool a little bit. So far, I think I'm about ankle-deep. LOL  Once again, I've always been more of an acoustic musician so the whole world of filters and oscillators is a little daunting.

Don't threat, I'm kind of a noob to using synths (the SynthMaker I'm going to have to learn since it's ability to make any kind of synth will prove useful for me.) hence the current focus on sampling (I do hope to learn how to use the instruments well.).

Other then that, just experiment a little bit, dabble in the manuals and you'll be synthesizing in no time. Again, you are the best person to win this system, you're a musician, you have talent and you can put this thing to good use.

Welcome to HotHardware!

 

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