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Preamp and AD Converter level does not match Audio Interfaces
Old 5th March 2018
  #1
Gear Nut
 

Preamp and AD Converter level does not match

Hi,

I got a little Problem, I bought a "Presonus M80" and use a Lynx E22 PCIe Interface.

The Problem is the Levels doe not match.
When the M80 says 0dbu the Input from the Lynx is way lower.

It has a Trim option with "+20dbu FS" or "variable" but regardless of which setting i choose the levels do not match.

As the output from the Presonus is balanced my bet would be that there are +4db are comming out but there is no setting in the Lynx where i could set that, variable does not work though.

So basically the question is what are i am doing "wrong" here?
I also have an RME card and will try with that in the Studio hopefully there is the right setting.

Tought every converter has a -10/+4db setting.
Old 5th March 2018
  #2
Gear Nut
 

Quote:
The card’s Input and Output Trims can be
switched between +20dBu and Variable Trim.
+20dBu is the default for all inputs and outputs,
and is suited to most professional audio
contexts. Please note that +20dBu refers to a full
-scale level. This is the same trim level used
25
in older Lynx products such as the LynxTWO wh
en switched to a +4 trim setting. This refers
to a nominal +4dBu level with 16dB of headr
oom. Switching to Variable Trim changes the
Trim level to +6dBV – the same level of the
LynxTWO and Aurora products when put into
the -10dBV trim position. This is the factory defa
ult state, but can be changed to the desired
reference level with the Trim Pots on the card
itself. These levels can be set anywhere from
0dBV (consumer levels) to +24 dBu.
So +20dbu FS should be +4dbu and variable should be -10dbv.

But:
When i set the Gain on the Presonus M80 to 0dbu and connect the Balanced Output (should be +4dbu) to the Input from the Lynx E22 and set the Inputs to +20db FS what should be +4dbu the gain is not 0db on the Lynx Mixer too?
Old 6th March 2018
  #3
Gear Guru
 
jwh1192's Avatar
ok .. when you see 0VU on your Presonus ... you should see about -20 on your Lynx, is that about what you see ???
Old 6th March 2018
  #4
Gear Nut
 

Yes but i do want to have a higher level in the lynx mixer, how do i do that?
Is the only way to push the preamp harder?

there are 20db unused "headroom", i do want to use it.

Cant believe pros record the outputs from there SSL in Protools with -20dbfs?
Old 6th March 2018
  #5
Gear Guru
 
jwh1192's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael_ View Post
Yes but i do want to have a higher level in the lynx mixer, how do i do that?
Is the only way to push the preamp harder?

there are 20db unused "headroom", i do want to use it.

Cant believe pros record the outputs from there SSL in Protools with -20dbfs?
depends on the source material .. but headroom can be your friend .. Transients can use up a lot of that quickly unless you are Compressing the crap on the way in ..

may i ask, what are you recording that you need Less Headroom ??? and what do you believe will be your Advantage to pushing the level up Now .. ??

when combining a lot of sources (tracks) and adding plugins you will eat up that headroom .. and then when you Master your Product it is good to have that headroom ..

and working at analog levels (the levels your analog gear loves) is not a bad thing ... it all works together with the things i mentioned above ..

cheers john
Old 6th March 2018
  #6
Gear Nut
 

I want to record Synthesizers so not to much dynamics.
There is no need to raise the gain up to 0dbfs but -20db is a bit much unused headroom i guess?

I want to use the Preamp because old analog synths have low output, not all but there are some.
Old 6th March 2018
  #7
Lives for gear
 
sdelsolray's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael_ View Post
Hi,

I got a little Problem, I bought a "Presonus M80" and use a Lynx E22 PCIe Interface.

The Problem is the Levels doe not match.
When the M80 says 0dbu the Input from the Lynx is way lower.

It has a Trim option with "+20dbu FS" or "variable" but regardless of which setting i choose the levels do not match.

As the output from the Presonus is balanced my bet would be that there are +4db are comming out but there is no setting in the Lynx where i could set that, variable does not work though.

So basically the question is what are i am doing "wrong" here?
I also have an RME card and will try with that in the Studio hopefully there is the right setting.

Tought every converter has a -10/+4db setting.
Your two meters are working on different scales. The Presonus is set to analog +4 dBu scale and your Lynx is set to digital -20 dbfs. Put another way, when your Presonus reads +4 db your Lynx is reading -20 db. This is perfectly normal.
Old 6th March 2018
  #8
Gear Guru
 
jwh1192's Avatar
again, as mentioned in Post #7 .. perfectly normal for analog Gear to operate at ..

i assume you are a little younger and have not used that much Analog Gear ... and nothing wrong with being young, please do not take that the wrong way .. not doing anything but stating a fact ..

when DAW's first come on the scene they operated at analog levels - people were flying things out for an editing then flying them back to tape .. so the levels need to be the same .. analog gear has not changed operating levels so we still record into DAW's at the same levels we used to .. each piece of gear operating at it's optimum level for Signal to Noise ..

pushing things into digital HOT from analog IMHO is just not how the gear was intended to be used ..

so again .. all is good .. you will need that headroom later once you are in Digital .. this way your Plugins - which believe it or not are still based on these same analog levels somewhat love to work at !!!

try using a VU meter in your DAW while recording and mixing .. helps to keep that Space - Width and Depth that we all strive for !!!

so, take what i say however you wish, just passing along a few things that have worked for me for the past 40+ years .. it is a fun business / hobby to be in or have ..

cheers john
Old 6th March 2018
  #9
Gear Nut
 

So it is normal to have -20dbfs when recording analog synths?
Im just curious because when i use plugin synths and fx i always get near to the 0dbfs make on every track.

So i have to lower the output from the soft synths when combining with hardware synths and this sucks a bit, thought maybe i was doing something wrong.
Old 6th March 2018
  #10
Gear Nut
 

I now connected my Roland TR 909 to my Yamaha Rev 5 and the balanced output from the Yamaha Rev 5 to the input from the Lynx.
I can get almost 0dbfs in the daw with that.

But with synths or the Presonus M80 i only get -20dbfs if at all.
Old 6th March 2018
  #11
Gear Guru
 
jwh1192's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael_ View Post
I now connected my Roland TR 909 to my Yamaha Rev 5 and the balanced output from the Yamaha Rev 5 to the input from the Lynx.
I can get almost 0dbfs in the daw with that.

But with synths or the Presonus M80 i only get -20dbfs if at all.
ok, so lets say you have 6 tracks that all hit 0dbfs (that Full Scale Digital - no headroom) .. then you combine them together .. what do you think is going to happen ??? yes, you will have to start turning things down to create headroom to work with .. make sense .. !!!

and are you talking about 0dbfs on Peaks or Average ?? i am talking about Average with peaks going higher .. hence the headroom for Transients ..
Old 7th March 2018
  #12
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael_ View Post
Cant believe pros record the outputs from there SSL in Protools with -20dbfs?
They do. Lots of info on this all over the web. One of the best thing you can do to make better sounding records is to learn about proper gain staging.

Also think of it this way if your recording tracks that hot and sending them to pros to mix on a SSL the very first thing they will have to do to your tracks is trim them down to not overload the SSL.
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