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A couple of Home recording questions



 
 
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  #1  
Old June 1st 04, 03:17 AM
Mmm_moo_cows
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default A couple of Home recording questions

Hi,

Sort of new to home recording. Attempting to record the guitar. Any
help on this would be greatly appreciated.

Basically, I have a cornford mk-50h stack (stacked amp), which I use a
THD Hotplate (power attenuator, basically quitens the stack down by
sitting inbetween the amp head and the speaker cabinet).

The THD hotplate has a line out which I used to record. Recording wise
I am using a Midiman M-audiophile 2696 and cakewalk sonar 3 (p1.7 128
RAM - upgrading to a p3.0 528 RAM soon)

Problem is, when I record clean guitar it sounds ok but when I attempt
to record distorted guitar, it just sounds bad and fuzzy (not
malfunction bad, but just low quality almost like it is a real cheap
distortion effect- which its not!). I'm not overloading the soundcard
inputs or anything like that, and there is certainly nothing wrong
with the equipment nor is it cheap/dodgey equipment. I'm guessing its
because of the whole using line out thing.

So would buying a microphone be a good idea(not certain, but I heard
the shure 57 was good to start with), and hopefully I can then get the
distortion sounding on the recording as it should? - or is it another
general problem with my setup?

Also, when I do record something, I always get my vu (i think its
called, the sound input level meter) db level in the green range
(occasionally it might dip into yellow, but only just). However,
whenever I play it back it is ever so quite. Much much quiter then
any music I may have on my system. Is there something I am doing
wrong? All levels are set to normal in the recording software, i.e.
its mixer is not quitening it (unless it does it by default).

Also, a little on the pc, p3.0 528 RAM is that good enough to record
to a descent quality (i.e. low latency etc, 41 up to 91k 24bit), or
would 1 gig of RAM be ideal.

Sorry for the long post and loads of questions, been playing for 10
years and am becoming more and more enthusiastic towards home
recording but I cant seem to get the recording to sound good - I
realise I wont be able to get the polished result of what is on a cd,
but I though I may get closish to that. I have heard clips people
have home recorded that sound good/proper, but none of them were mine!

Also generally speaking, how would a pc setup compare to proper
recording deck/machine?

Any help would be most appreciated and thanks in advance for any help,

Jon.
Ads
  #2  
Old June 1st 04, 03:27 AM
Mondoslug1
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Jon wrote:

>Hi,
>
>Sort of new to home recording. Attempting to record the guitar. Any
>help on this would be greatly appreciated.
>
>Basically, I have a cornford mk-50h stack (stacked amp), which I use a
>THD Hotplate (power attenuator, basically quitens the stack down by
>sitting inbetween the amp head and the speaker cabinet).
>
>The THD hotplate has a line out which I used to record. Recording wise
>I am using a Midiman M-audiophile 2696 and cakewalk sonar 3 (p1.7 128
>RAM - upgrading to a p3.0 528 RAM soon)
>
>Problem is, when I record clean guitar it sounds ok but when I attempt
>to record distorted guitar, it just sounds bad and fuzzy (not
>malfunction bad, but just low quality almost like it is a real cheap
>distortion effect- which its not!). I'm not overloading the soundcard
>inputs or anything like that, and there is certainly nothing wrong
>with the equipment nor is it cheap/dodgey equipment. I'm guessing its
>because of the whole using line out thing.


Yeah you need a Cabinet Simulator....the Palmer PDI-09 would work great...stick
it on the line out from the Hot Plate, about $120.00....or a H&K Red Box. I
have some mp3s of just that on my website if interested....and of course a mic
would work just fine <g>

>




Me at:
http://www.soundclick.com/bands/5/andymostmusic.htm







  #3  
Old June 1st 04, 03:27 AM
Mondoslug1
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Jon wrote:

>Hi,
>
>Sort of new to home recording. Attempting to record the guitar. Any
>help on this would be greatly appreciated.
>
>Basically, I have a cornford mk-50h stack (stacked amp), which I use a
>THD Hotplate (power attenuator, basically quitens the stack down by
>sitting inbetween the amp head and the speaker cabinet).
>
>The THD hotplate has a line out which I used to record. Recording wise
>I am using a Midiman M-audiophile 2696 and cakewalk sonar 3 (p1.7 128
>RAM - upgrading to a p3.0 528 RAM soon)
>
>Problem is, when I record clean guitar it sounds ok but when I attempt
>to record distorted guitar, it just sounds bad and fuzzy (not
>malfunction bad, but just low quality almost like it is a real cheap
>distortion effect- which its not!). I'm not overloading the soundcard
>inputs or anything like that, and there is certainly nothing wrong
>with the equipment nor is it cheap/dodgey equipment. I'm guessing its
>because of the whole using line out thing.


Yeah you need a Cabinet Simulator....the Palmer PDI-09 would work great...stick
it on the line out from the Hot Plate, about $120.00....or a H&K Red Box. I
have some mp3s of just that on my website if interested....and of course a mic
would work just fine <g>

>




Me at:
http://www.soundclick.com/bands/5/andymostmusic.htm







  #4  
Old June 1st 04, 03:35 AM
Arny Krueger
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Mmm_moo_cows wrote:

> Sort of new to home recording. Attempting to record the guitar. Any
> help on this would be greatly appreciated.


> Basically, I have a cornford mk-50h stack (stacked amp), which I use a
> THD Hotplate (power attenuator, basically quitens the stack down by
> sitting inbetween the amp head and the speaker cabinet).


> The THD hotplate has a line out which I used to record. Recording wise
> I am using a Midiman M-audiophile 2696 and cakewalk sonar 3 (p1.7 128
> RAM - upgrading to a p3.0 528 RAM soon)


> Problem is, when I record clean guitar it sounds ok but when I attempt
> to record distorted guitar, it just sounds bad and fuzzy (not
> malfunction bad, but just low quality almost like it is a real cheap
> distortion effect- which its not!). I'm not overloading the soundcard
> inputs or anything like that, and there is certainly nothing wrong
> with the equipment nor is it cheap/dodgey equipment. I'm guessing its
> because of the whole using line out thing.


The M-Audio audiophile 2496 is not a standard audio production audio
interface. It only supports -10 and so-called consumer levels. If you don't
understand this terminology, check the RAP FAQ at
http://www.recaudiopro.net/ .

There is some chance that a source with standard +4 levels, will overload
the inputs of an AP2496 interface for this reason, and might be the cause
of what you observe.

A passive mic attenuator could reduce the signal from a line level source to
something that would work well with your AP2496 interface. You need about 15
dB attenuation, if there is a problem of this kind. Shure, Audio Technica,
and Rapco have appropriate attenuators in their product catalogs.

> So would buying a microphone be a good idea(not certain, but I heard
> the shure 57 was good to start with), and hopefully I can then get the
> distortion sounding on the recording as it should? - or is it another
> general problem with my setup?


There is also a chance that your speakers further modify the distorted
sounds in ways that you prefer. Then, recording the acoustical output of the
speakers with a mic is the way to go.

To record with a microphone, you will need both a microphone and a
microphone preamp, as the Audiophile 2496 lacks mic level inputs. Shure
SM57s aren't my favorite mic, for this application I would pick a MXL603 or
perhaps a Behringer ECM8000. An example of a low cost mic preamp could be a
Rolls MP13 or one of the Behringer small mixers which start out around $40.

> Also, when I do record something, I always get my vu (i think its
> called, the sound input level meter) db level in the green range
> (occasionally it might dip into yellow, but only just). However,
> whenever I play it back it is ever so quite. Much much quiter then
> any music I may have on my system. Is there something I am doing
> wrong? All levels are set to normal in the recording software, i.e.
> its mixer is not quitening it (unless it does it by default).


If you're recording with anything like decent audio recording software, you
should be able to adjust the level of what you record, after you record it.
If you don't have software that can do this, you can download Audacity,
which is freeware.

> Also, a little on the pc, p3.0 528 RAM is that good enough to record
> to a descent quality (i.e. low latency etc, 41 up to 91k 24bit), or
> would 1 gig of RAM be ideal.


For what you're doing, your PC is likely to already be overkill. 256 megs of
RAM and 1 GHz would be more than enough. There are probably people posting
here who did lots of work with 64 megs and 100 MHz, or less.

> Also generally speaking, how would a pc setup compare to proper
> recording deck/machine?


A PC setup is a proper recording deck/machine if it has a good audio
interface, appropriate software and a knowlegeable experienced operator..
While your AP2496 has some weaknesses vis-a-vis standard audio production
levels, it can be made to work quite well. Lots of people report excellent
results with it.



  #5  
Old June 1st 04, 03:35 AM
Arny Krueger
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Mmm_moo_cows wrote:

> Sort of new to home recording. Attempting to record the guitar. Any
> help on this would be greatly appreciated.


> Basically, I have a cornford mk-50h stack (stacked amp), which I use a
> THD Hotplate (power attenuator, basically quitens the stack down by
> sitting inbetween the amp head and the speaker cabinet).


> The THD hotplate has a line out which I used to record. Recording wise
> I am using a Midiman M-audiophile 2696 and cakewalk sonar 3 (p1.7 128
> RAM - upgrading to a p3.0 528 RAM soon)


> Problem is, when I record clean guitar it sounds ok but when I attempt
> to record distorted guitar, it just sounds bad and fuzzy (not
> malfunction bad, but just low quality almost like it is a real cheap
> distortion effect- which its not!). I'm not overloading the soundcard
> inputs or anything like that, and there is certainly nothing wrong
> with the equipment nor is it cheap/dodgey equipment. I'm guessing its
> because of the whole using line out thing.


The M-Audio audiophile 2496 is not a standard audio production audio
interface. It only supports -10 and so-called consumer levels. If you don't
understand this terminology, check the RAP FAQ at
http://www.recaudiopro.net/ .

There is some chance that a source with standard +4 levels, will overload
the inputs of an AP2496 interface for this reason, and might be the cause
of what you observe.

A passive mic attenuator could reduce the signal from a line level source to
something that would work well with your AP2496 interface. You need about 15
dB attenuation, if there is a problem of this kind. Shure, Audio Technica,
and Rapco have appropriate attenuators in their product catalogs.

> So would buying a microphone be a good idea(not certain, but I heard
> the shure 57 was good to start with), and hopefully I can then get the
> distortion sounding on the recording as it should? - or is it another
> general problem with my setup?


There is also a chance that your speakers further modify the distorted
sounds in ways that you prefer. Then, recording the acoustical output of the
speakers with a mic is the way to go.

To record with a microphone, you will need both a microphone and a
microphone preamp, as the Audiophile 2496 lacks mic level inputs. Shure
SM57s aren't my favorite mic, for this application I would pick a MXL603 or
perhaps a Behringer ECM8000. An example of a low cost mic preamp could be a
Rolls MP13 or one of the Behringer small mixers which start out around $40.

> Also, when I do record something, I always get my vu (i think its
> called, the sound input level meter) db level in the green range
> (occasionally it might dip into yellow, but only just). However,
> whenever I play it back it is ever so quite. Much much quiter then
> any music I may have on my system. Is there something I am doing
> wrong? All levels are set to normal in the recording software, i.e.
> its mixer is not quitening it (unless it does it by default).


If you're recording with anything like decent audio recording software, you
should be able to adjust the level of what you record, after you record it.
If you don't have software that can do this, you can download Audacity,
which is freeware.

> Also, a little on the pc, p3.0 528 RAM is that good enough to record
> to a descent quality (i.e. low latency etc, 41 up to 91k 24bit), or
> would 1 gig of RAM be ideal.


For what you're doing, your PC is likely to already be overkill. 256 megs of
RAM and 1 GHz would be more than enough. There are probably people posting
here who did lots of work with 64 megs and 100 MHz, or less.

> Also generally speaking, how would a pc setup compare to proper
> recording deck/machine?


A PC setup is a proper recording deck/machine if it has a good audio
interface, appropriate software and a knowlegeable experienced operator..
While your AP2496 has some weaknesses vis-a-vis standard audio production
levels, it can be made to work quite well. Lots of people report excellent
results with it.



  #6  
Old June 1st 04, 08:13 AM
Paul Stamler
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

What's probably going on is that most guitar speakers have no high end to
speak of; they roll off someplace between 5kHz and 10kHz. By taking the line
out, you're hearing all the stuff the speakers filer out, and on most
guitars that sounds really cheesy. Mondoslug's recommendation of a cabinet
simulator is one possibility, and a microphone is another, provided you have
a microphone preamp or mixing board you can run it through. The SM57 is a
classic microphone used to record electric guitar, and at the price there's
really no competition.

Peace,
Paul


  #7  
Old June 1st 04, 08:13 AM
Paul Stamler
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

What's probably going on is that most guitar speakers have no high end to
speak of; they roll off someplace between 5kHz and 10kHz. By taking the line
out, you're hearing all the stuff the speakers filer out, and on most
guitars that sounds really cheesy. Mondoslug's recommendation of a cabinet
simulator is one possibility, and a microphone is another, provided you have
a microphone preamp or mixing board you can run it through. The SM57 is a
classic microphone used to record electric guitar, and at the price there's
really no competition.

Peace,
Paul


  #8  
Old June 1st 04, 02:53 PM
Tim Padrick
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

http://www.palmerdirect.com/products.html Their PDI 09 and PGA 04 are said
to be "the best"

http://www.hughes-and-kettner.com/st.../specials.html The Red Box Pro
is said to be a good one.

http://www.peavey.com/products/shop_...ode/30/edi.cfm A
pretty affordable unit

http://www.behringer.com/02_products...GI100&lang=eng A very
affordable unit.


"Mmm_moo_cows" > wrote in message
m...
> Hi,
>
> Sort of new to home recording. Attempting to record the guitar. Any
> help on this would be greatly appreciated.
>
> Basically, I have a cornford mk-50h stack (stacked amp), which I use a
> THD Hotplate (power attenuator, basically quitens the stack down by
> sitting inbetween the amp head and the speaker cabinet).
>
> The THD hotplate has a line out which I used to record. Recording wise
> I am using a Midiman M-audiophile 2696 and cakewalk sonar 3 (p1.7 128
> RAM - upgrading to a p3.0 528 RAM soon)
>
> Problem is, when I record clean guitar it sounds ok but when I attempt
> to record distorted guitar, it just sounds bad and fuzzy (not
> malfunction bad, but just low quality almost like it is a real cheap
> distortion effect- which its not!). I'm not overloading the soundcard
> inputs or anything like that, and there is certainly nothing wrong
> with the equipment nor is it cheap/dodgey equipment. I'm guessing its
> because of the whole using line out thing.
>
> So would buying a microphone be a good idea(not certain, but I heard
> the shure 57 was good to start with), and hopefully I can then get the
> distortion sounding on the recording as it should? - or is it another
> general problem with my setup?
>
> Also, when I do record something, I always get my vu (i think its
> called, the sound input level meter) db level in the green range
> (occasionally it might dip into yellow, but only just). However,
> whenever I play it back it is ever so quite. Much much quiter then
> any music I may have on my system. Is there something I am doing
> wrong? All levels are set to normal in the recording software, i.e.
> its mixer is not quitening it (unless it does it by default).
>
> Also, a little on the pc, p3.0 528 RAM is that good enough to record
> to a descent quality (i.e. low latency etc, 41 up to 91k 24bit), or
> would 1 gig of RAM be ideal.
>
> Sorry for the long post and loads of questions, been playing for 10
> years and am becoming more and more enthusiastic towards home
> recording but I cant seem to get the recording to sound good - I
> realise I wont be able to get the polished result of what is on a cd,
> but I though I may get closish to that. I have heard clips people
> have home recorded that sound good/proper, but none of them were mine!
>
> Also generally speaking, how would a pc setup compare to proper
> recording deck/machine?
>
> Any help would be most appreciated and thanks in advance for any help,
>
> Jon.



  #9  
Old June 1st 04, 02:53 PM
Tim Padrick
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

http://www.palmerdirect.com/products.html Their PDI 09 and PGA 04 are said
to be "the best"

http://www.hughes-and-kettner.com/st.../specials.html The Red Box Pro
is said to be a good one.

http://www.peavey.com/products/shop_...ode/30/edi.cfm A
pretty affordable unit

http://www.behringer.com/02_products...GI100&lang=eng A very
affordable unit.


"Mmm_moo_cows" > wrote in message
m...
> Hi,
>
> Sort of new to home recording. Attempting to record the guitar. Any
> help on this would be greatly appreciated.
>
> Basically, I have a cornford mk-50h stack (stacked amp), which I use a
> THD Hotplate (power attenuator, basically quitens the stack down by
> sitting inbetween the amp head and the speaker cabinet).
>
> The THD hotplate has a line out which I used to record. Recording wise
> I am using a Midiman M-audiophile 2696 and cakewalk sonar 3 (p1.7 128
> RAM - upgrading to a p3.0 528 RAM soon)
>
> Problem is, when I record clean guitar it sounds ok but when I attempt
> to record distorted guitar, it just sounds bad and fuzzy (not
> malfunction bad, but just low quality almost like it is a real cheap
> distortion effect- which its not!). I'm not overloading the soundcard
> inputs or anything like that, and there is certainly nothing wrong
> with the equipment nor is it cheap/dodgey equipment. I'm guessing its
> because of the whole using line out thing.
>
> So would buying a microphone be a good idea(not certain, but I heard
> the shure 57 was good to start with), and hopefully I can then get the
> distortion sounding on the recording as it should? - or is it another
> general problem with my setup?
>
> Also, when I do record something, I always get my vu (i think its
> called, the sound input level meter) db level in the green range
> (occasionally it might dip into yellow, but only just). However,
> whenever I play it back it is ever so quite. Much much quiter then
> any music I may have on my system. Is there something I am doing
> wrong? All levels are set to normal in the recording software, i.e.
> its mixer is not quitening it (unless it does it by default).
>
> Also, a little on the pc, p3.0 528 RAM is that good enough to record
> to a descent quality (i.e. low latency etc, 41 up to 91k 24bit), or
> would 1 gig of RAM be ideal.
>
> Sorry for the long post and loads of questions, been playing for 10
> years and am becoming more and more enthusiastic towards home
> recording but I cant seem to get the recording to sound good - I
> realise I wont be able to get the polished result of what is on a cd,
> but I though I may get closish to that. I have heard clips people
> have home recorded that sound good/proper, but none of them were mine!
>
> Also generally speaking, how would a pc setup compare to proper
> recording deck/machine?
>
> Any help would be most appreciated and thanks in advance for any help,
>
> Jon.



  #10  
Old June 1st 04, 11:25 PM
Laurence Payne
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default


>So would buying a microphone be a good idea(not certain, but I heard
>the shure 57 was good to start with), and hopefully I can then get the
>distortion sounding on the recording as it should? - or is it another
>general problem with my setup?


We don't know. But you can find out. Record something else into your
system - maybe a simple link from a CD player. Does it sound right?
If so, your system is OK.


>
>Also, when I do record something, I always get my vu (i think its
>called, the sound input level meter) db level in the green range
>(occasionally it might dip into yellow, but only just). However,
>whenever I play it back it is ever so quite. Much much quiter then
>any music I may have on my system. Is there something I am doing
>wrong? All levels are set to normal in the recording software, i.e.
>its mixer is not quitening it (unless it does it by default).


Is this the meter in the M-Audio Control Panel? You don't have to
worry about recording to the maximum possible level, particularly if
you're recording at 24-bit. There's plenty of scope for turning it
up at a later stage. But maybe you can feed the soundcard a bit more
level? Your soundcard is probably the most-recommended model in its
class, and is capable of excellent results. But its input
sensitivity is unusual - it isn't really either +4 or -10 (the two
standard levels). No matter. No serious recordist expects to do
without a level control between source and sound-card. The
Audiophile just brings this need directly to your attention :-)


>
>Also, a little on the pc, p3.0 528 RAM is that good enough to record
>to a descent quality (i.e. low latency etc, 41 up to 91k 24bit), or
>would 1 gig of RAM be ideal.


Once a basic sufficiency of computer power is exceeded (and yours well
exceeds it) the only factors affecting latency are the soundcard and
its drivers. Your card will easily run at single-figure latency.
You'll push it down to about 5 ms under Windows 9.x, half that under
Windows XP. But don't. If you intend to record plug-in midi
softsynths in real time you'll want to set around 10ms. If you don't
- what harm will 20 or 30ms of latency do you? Set it high, let your
system have an easy ride :-)

24-bit? Yes. If only because it allows you to be sloppy with
recording levels (but always err under, not over) Higher than
44.1KHz? I see little point.


CubaseFAQ www.laurencepayne.co.uk/CubaseFAQ.htm
"Possibly the world's least impressive web site": George Perfect
 




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