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audio degedration-can someone help?
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captainhook79
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11th March 2010
Old 11th March 2010
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audio degedration-can someone help?

Hey guys,
I've run into a bit of an issue with wiring my studio, and experiencing a degredation in the audio signal. I'm going to do my best to describe the scenario. Hopefully somebody can help and shed some light on what's going on. Okay, here goes.
I've just introduced a DBX patchbay into my studio. Set up looks like this:
Snake from live room in through wall, into Mogami balanced TRS snake, into DBX patchbay. Patchbay routes various preamps such as Gap Pre 73, Focusrite TMP, BLA Auteur, back through Patchbay and out, via Pulsar balanced audio snake, into Tascam 1082.

Here's the issue, since I've introduced the patchbay and the two additional audio snakes to make that happen, I've noticed that I can't get the same signal as when everything was wired direct into the Tascam from the live room. The signal now sounds as if I've run an EQ on the audio, cutting everything below 120 HZ, and cutting all of my mids as well. It's sterile, cold, and absolutely no presence, no matter which preamp i run it through. Even when I chain the signal into my RNLA, it's still cold, sterile, and just nasty.
Does this scenario sound familiar to anyone? Have I introduced something in my signal chain that I shouldn't have?

At any rate, any help that you can offer, or any information about signal flow and patchbays will help tremendously!

Many thanks guys! =)
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11th March 2010
Old 11th March 2010
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Maybe you have introduced a polarity reverse - it would only take one pair of wires to swapped around in error. That would introduce a phase cancellation that would take out you lows and mids, and smear your presence.
captainhook79
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11th March 2010
Old 11th March 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwi View Post
Maybe you have introduced a polarity reverse - it would only take one pair of wires to swapped around in error. That would introduce a phase cancellation that would take out you lows and mids, and smear your presence.
Interesting! My brother and I have been scratching our heads with the whole unbalanced vs. balanced issue. Trying to preserve "balanced" signal flow. Do you know where I could look in the signal flow for phase cancellations??? Tell me more please... I don't want to put a third whole in the wall (ha ha)
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11th March 2010
Old 11th March 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by captainhook79 View Post
Interesting! My brother and I have been scratching our heads with the whole unbalanced vs. balanced issue. Trying to preserve "balanced" signal flow. Do you know where I could look in the signal flow for phase cancellations??? Tell me more please... I don't want to put a third whole in the wall (ha ha)
He means that one of the wires or connectors might be backwards(maybe wired inside by accident). Like positive and negative cross!! You can get a cable tester-

Behringer | CT-100 Cable Tester | CT100 | B&H Photo Video
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11th March 2010
Old 11th March 2010
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Even easier - reverse the polarity of your speakers (or click the 'phase' switch in your DAW for just one channel of your stereo output). If the sound comes right, you know that somewhere you have got a cable or something reversed.

The cable tester (or use a multimeter) would be useful if you establish that this is a phase problem.
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11th March 2010
Old 11th March 2010
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Yeah, a cable tester could help to track down the problem. Did you wire the snake boxes / conversion yourself? Double check the pin-to-pin combinations whenever and wherever you change connectors :

tip = xlr pin 2
ring = xlr pin 3
sleeve = xlr pin 1

An obvious working method would be to start at the preamps and plug a mic/xlr directly into the input of the preamp and check that your signal is unadulterated into the converters, assuming that the outputs of your preamps are routed through your patchbay. If that is bad, then bypass your patchbay all together by now running the output of the preamp directly into the converter using a store-bought cable with the proper terminations. If all of that is well and good, then start working backward through the chain : run your mic/line direct into your patchbay (skipping the wall box) and then into the preamp, and so on, adding just one new element to the path at a time. You'll figure it out eventually.

Good luck!
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