please advise – Mac user wants to buy a cheap PC to run vsig

Home Forums Products Vsig and Preset Development please advise – Mac user wants to buy a cheap PC to run vsig

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    • #106912


      i've decided to try out vsig on my dsp7000. trouble is i am mac only and always have been, so i have literally no idea what to look for when buying a secondhand PC.

      i do know i would prefer to use a laptop and i want to spend as little money as possible as i will only use it to run vsig.

      i think i know this much – windows xp + a serial port.  

      anything else i should know? any old good workhorses to look for?

       ebay is a big place when you just type in 'pc laptop' !  🙂


    • #120087


      if you run Intel Macs you should really consider simply using a virtualization software lke VMWare Fusion or Parallels + Win XP or even cheaper, use Apple Bootcamp + Win XP Pro SP2 (at least) for a native installaton. Both ways proved to work perfectly. The advantage of virtualization is that you can have your Mac OS running at the same time with Windows in a dedicated window, so you can keep using your programs for anything else. Bootcamp limits you to one system at boot, either OS X or Windows….but it's cheaper.

      If you are still running G3/4/5 Macs, people have had luck using Virtual PC, but I have no advice for that.

      If you decide to go for an used PC, I'd probably go for a cheap new one. Never know what a computer has gone through…

      Get a machine with Intel chipset. No need for big cpu power. 1 GB ram would be more than enough with Win XP. Avoid Vista, even though Vsig works on it. It's just that it needs more power/ram to run ok.

      Better if the computer offers a Serial COM port or you'll have to get an USB to SERIAL adapter.

      Using a laptop is not the ideal vsig workstation. You need a good monitor size or a couple of smaller one running in dual head (most ATI and Nvidia GPU cards do that)

      all the best


    • #120089

      Thanks for the information – that sounds like a good way to go as I am using an intel machine.

      Seems like i can have Parallels running – tweak patches in VSIG, and hear the results by sending audio from Logic in the OSX system. Very good.

      Couple of questions :

      With regards to the usb to serial adapter – am i looking for anything in particular? Or just any old usb to serial.

      Also i think i have to buy/borrow Windows XP to install into parrallels – can i get away with Win XP Home (which seems to be the cheapest).



    • #131260

      Hi Jim

      Mac (and PC) users have found the Keyspan USA-19HS to be very reliable. Obviously, being a "for Mac" product you'll have to pay an unreasonable price for it. Any USB to SERIAL adapter costs a fraction of that and works fine. Yours is the choice:

      Regarding which XP version/licence you have to use with Parallels, please check their website for specific requirements.

      good luck


    • #133059


      almost exactly one year on…

      to be honest i wish i'd bought a PC (or i wish eventide would put out an OSX VSIG)…

      installing Parallels has been a nightmare, then installing XP into Parallels was a further nightmare.

      i have downloaded VSIG and have no idea if its installed or not?! this is what i have in my 'vsig2 490' folder:

      library (folder)

      vsigfile.chm (don't know what this is)

      VSIGFILE.exe (is this the vsig app?)

      the manual is not clear what to do. there doesn't seem to be an 'installer' as such…?

      sorry, i know this is basic. any help appreciated.

      i haven't even connected up the usb to serial lead yet. i bet that will be fun 🙁

    • #133060
      Eventide Staff


      i wish eventide would put out an OSX VSIG

      We do as well. In the meantime there is VsigX.


      vsigfile.chm (don't know what this is)

      VSIGFILE.exe (is this the vsig app?)

      The first is the help file. The second is the application. Should be all you need.

    • #133078

      VsigX is not an option. AFAIK, it doesn't work with the recent versions of the harmonizers' software, neither 5.3 nor 5.5.

      I had to install a Windows on my Mac, then Vsig to edit patches.

      But to download them from/to the unit, I had to use the units's MIDI SysEx commands. At the time, I didn't manage to use the USB/serial adapter from a Windows on my Mac.

      I hope you don't have to do that.

    • #133079

      Actually, I just tried again several options. In my experience, the biggest problem with using vsig lies in dealing with the serial connection from a Windows inside MacOSX.

      So, I tried again the old VsigX. Actually it seems to work quite well on my system (OSX 10.6.7)

      What I did:

      -install the latest drivers for the Keyspan USB-serial interface (model USA-19HS) (drivers available on

      -finish the installation of the USB-serial interface according to the Keyspan manual

      -start VSIGX

      -in Preferences… -> Connection -> enable Serial and choose the correct device, in my case something like cu.KeySerial1 (and maybe check all options are the same on the unit and in the Preferences: Baud rate, etc.)

      -menu MIDI -> get sigDbase (YOU HAVE TO DO THAT before opening your patches, to have the correct data for your unit) … be patient… check the unit is sending something (look at its screen)… when it's done, you will have to give a location and name for the database…

      -now, you should be able to use for instance MIDI -> Get Patch

      VsigX is quite old (version 1.9beta released November 2006). But vsig is quite old too, and still in beta too (version 2.4.9beta released October 2007).

      Bottomline is: try VsigX again. That might be your best bet. Ask questions here if you don't succeed.

      All best.

    • #133082

      Wowsers, well, it looks like you had a problem, but solved it.  Yay!

      Just to recap, vSigX 1.9 only works with the serial port.  Trust me, this is way better than MIDI anyway!  And vSigX will work with different firmware versions.  You always need to have the appropriate database for each different version, so when you upgrade the firmware, always download the new database.  You'll only need to do that once for each upgrade.  FWIW, in version 2, I've added a dialog box that pops up telling you the database is being transferred.  IIRC, the transfer takes about four minutes…

      If anyone has any problems with vSigX and I don't reply to you quickly enough here, you can always send me an email and I'll do my best to help you.  (doug at vsigx dot com).

    • #133118

      i have had some success with vsigx on osx 10.6.7 (gave up with parrallels and XP)

      anyway i have managed to transfer my modules database from the DSP7000 to my mac and have also managed to get a few patches on screen.

      the problem i am having that i can only make one information transfer – to explain, if i 'get patch' it will do it once, but then i cannot get anymore patches. i have to actually restart the mac before i can get another patch… 

      do you know what may be causing this? i have also emailed doug to see if he has an idea where the problem may lie.

    • #133121

      Did you try the command View -> Show Patch View? Does it work? (May take time, so be patient before answering).

      If it works, what happens when you click on a patch in this view? Is it selected in the harmonizer?

      Are you sure you have to restart the Mac? Restarting vsigx is not enough?


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