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A bunch of small questions
Old 27th July 2005
  #1
Gear Nut
Exclamation A bunch of small questions

Whats the best 12-16 track mixer i can get for a good price

Also right now when i record i have my sound going thru a mircophone then into a berhenger mixer then strait into my soun card using cake walk. I was wondering what would enhance my sound quality the most and the least out of the items below, or if i left sothing out let me know. And what you suggest i should get as far as that brand and stuff

Firewire/usb interface
compressor
eq
mixer
new software
other....
Old 27th July 2005
  #2
Gear Guru
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peyton
I was wondering what would enhance my sound quality the most and the least out of the items below, or if i left sothing out let me know. .
You didn't say what you were using for a microphone, but since you just called it "a microphone" and left it at that, I am thinking it must be pretty average. That is something missing from your list- microphones are an area where any upgrade would be strongly felt, for sure.
Old 27th July 2005
  #3
Gear Nut
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeq
You didn't say what you were using for a microphone, but since you just called it "a microphone" and left it at that, I am thinking it must be pretty average. That is something missing from your list- microphones are an area where any upgrade would be strongly felt, for sure.
i use shure microphones
Old 27th July 2005
  #4
Gear Nut
 

what kind of budget do you have for this stuff man?

gotta figure out if it's worth it to upgrade one piece, or a couple, or all of them, or to just keep saving...

so... give us more info, what are you looking to spend? what kind of shure mics? what kind of soundcard?
Old 28th July 2005
  #5
Gear Nut
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnalogUniverse
what kind of budget do you have for this stuff man?

gotta figure out if it's worth it to upgrade one piece, or a couple, or all of them, or to just keep saving...

so... give us more info, what are you looking to spend? what kind of shure mics? what kind of soundcard?
i got SM57 and PG drum mic set. my budget is around $400 for a mixer $400 for an inter face and around $200 for any other stuff i need

soundcard- sound blaster
Old 28th July 2005
  #6
Gear Nut
bump
Old 28th July 2005
  #7


For $1000, you can get a multi-channel interface. You don't really need the mixer, as cakewalk will mix "in the box".



-tINY

Old 28th July 2005
  #8
Lives for gear
 
7 Hz's Avatar
You need to be much more specific about what gear you have already, we can't guess... Also, we need to know your application. You just record one mic at a time? Or whole bands? Quiet folk? Or Rock? Need MUCH more info from ya.

Anyway, I'd take ALL your money ($400 for a mixer $400 for an interface and around $200 for any other stuff=$1000) and buy the best (RME?) firewire interface you can get (with mic preamps). Then save up again and buy the best mic pre and microphone you can get...
Old 28th July 2005
  #9
Gear Guru
 

If it were me, and "enhancing sound quality" was my goal, I would take ALL the money (add 100 bucks) and get a Soundelux U195. Of course, I do a lot of overdubbing.

I am a firm believer in the Golden Channel philosophy and I think it starts with the mic. then I would save up and get an RNP or other quality/budget preamp

7Hz and tiny say interface first, I say mic first, but the common theme here is to INVEST not SPEND. Buy something good, save up and buy something good. Something you will keep and continue to use.

look at your numbers- you already own a Behringer mixer, you have $400 allocated for a mixer. What can you buy with $400? Another Behringer is about all. don't do it.
Old 28th July 2005
  #10
Gear Maniac
 
beatzz's Avatar
 

Hey joe that is a really interesting point!

Had he asked me i would have said:

audiophile $150

grace 101 $500

Shure SM7 or Audio Tech 4040 $350 (or less for the 4040)

Total = $1000

But otoh i wonder how big the difference would be between going with the mic you choose through the behringer as opposed to the grace 101. I honestly can't say which is a better route though. You might get a better sound with Joe's suggestion. Intresting though.
Old 28th July 2005
  #11
Lives for gear
 
7 Hz's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeq
INVEST not SPEND
Very good quote, and very true. Once you have a 'basic system' up and running, its best to upgrade to the absolute best you can afford on each item until you have a **** hot system. It is usualy personal preferences / ways of working that will dictate what you go for first, but I have NEVER regreted shelling out a thick wad of cash of gear I KNOW is quality kit that not only will sound good forever, but will also hold its value (both resale AND to me) over that time. Hell, if you are REALLY clever, you will end up with a bit of gear that will rise in value!
Old 28th July 2005
  #12
Gear Guru
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by beatzz
Hey joe that is a really interesting point!

Had he asked me i would have said:

audiophile $150

grace 101 $500

Shure SM7 or Audio Tech 4040 $350 (or less for the 4040)

Total = $1000

But otoh i wonder how big the difference would be between going with the mic you choose through the behringer as opposed to the grace 101. I honestly can't say which is a better route though. You might get a better sound with Joe's suggestion. Intresting though.

well, in a way, he Did ask you. Your list is quite reasonable, avoids any crap and covers more bases than my one mic. I wonder if maybe for Peyton, _yours is the better route. I guess I am just loving my U195 a lot these days. I use it on drums, vocals, sax, acoustic guitars, pianos- you name it. With that and a 57 I could conquer the world. Of course I already had some sweet tube preamps, so ...

that would be an interesting shootout
4040 > Grace
vs
U195 > Behringer

A lot depends on Peyton's application, workflow and goals.

Peyton: your "bunch of small questions" are really not so small, after all. Its really what this whole site is about- what is each piece of gear, what is its place in the chain, what brands/models are good, what's the best bang for the buck?
Old 29th July 2005
  #13
Gear Nut
Exclamation

thanks so far its been helpful

But i guess want i was trying to ask was whats the most important piece of gear needed for good quality sound besides microphones and a computer. I plan to sell everything i have exept my mircophones at start new. I mainly record metal type music and i record 1 insturment at a time.

Heres someone my recordings i didnt with my mixer, cakewalk, and some ****ty mics (before i got my shure gear) I did the death defiance recordings when i was 14 (2 years ago) all the rest are pretty current My recordings
Old 29th July 2005
  #14
Gear Guru
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peyton
But i guess want i was trying to ask was whats the most important piece of gear needed for good quality sound besides microphones and a computer.
generally most would say the effect on sound quality goes something like this:
musician>instrument>room>mic>preamp>converter>software
though there's plenty of room for argument in that order. For example a really great preamp can make an SM57 sound like a million bucks on some tracks. I know people who bought high end converters before they owned a decent preamp. (not me!)

And many would say "hey if you don't have really good monitor speakers you are just shooting in the dark- guessing about what your mic placement or mixing decisions are doing" and they would be correct too.

Since you are overdubbing one instrument at a time, I would suggest get a great mic now and a great preamp as soon as you can afford it. You will notice a big jump in sound quality.

You say "besides microphones and computer" but what I am trying to say is that owning an SM57 and some PGs does not mean you are "covered" in the microphone department.
Old 29th July 2005
  #15
Gear Nut
by converter i'm assuming you mean interface?

what would be a nice pre amp to start with for a good price (thats prob a stupid question) when using a preamp while recording guitar should it be ( mic>mixer>pre>computer) and should i use a pre amp when ever i record somthing or should i only use it on certain things
Old 29th July 2005
  #16
Gear Guru
 

See the "with a cheapness" preamp thread in this section for ideas on preamps.

You would use the preamp _instead of your mixer. you can't plug your mic directly into the soundcard- the signal is too weak. The preamp brings the mic level up to line level.

When you plug a mic into the mixer you are using the mixer's built in preamps even if you don't see them. Such preamps are usually not very good because the whole mixer with its 8 or 16 preamps and everything else in it often costs less than one high quality preamp. The preamps built into the Behringer mixers are not very well regarded.

You would definitely notice an improvement in sound with a high quality preamp.

mic> preamp> soundcard

skip the mixer altogether (unless you are doing drums or something where you need to combine more mics than you have preamps or soundcard channels for.) in fact, running your nice preamp through the Behringer will degrade the sound.

the soundcard converts your preamplified still-analog signal into digital and sends it into the computer. Some folks have soundcards with digital inputs and use high quality outboard converters to digitize the signal with greater accuracy and just use the soundcard as an interface into the computer.
Old 29th July 2005
  #17
Gear Addict
 
TyRip's Avatar
 

I don't think any decent preamp is a worthy investment when the conversion is being done by a Soundblaster audio card.

I also don't feel you need a mixer if you are doing 1 track at a time. All you need is the preamp to record, and most interfaces come with preamps already.

I would also skip a hardware compressor at this budget. It is very likely that you could over compress on the way into the computer and you can never undo that.

What I would recommend is the Presonus Firepod. There you have 8 preamps and 8 channels of conversion that will be much better than your soundblaster. Also, it has a mix function that works a little but like a 8 into 2 stereo mixer, and you could even use the preamp outputs (the channels you are recording) and the cue mix outputs (the channels already recorded that you need to listen to while tracking new stuff) to route into your Behringer mixer for the headphone mix for the musicians.

If your Shure PG drum mic set comes with a pair of condensers, then you are pretty much set for microphones at this point, unless you would like a large diaphragm condenser to try for vocals and/or in front of the drum kit. As far as that goes, there are a lot of mics that sound pretty good for less than $400. What I own is a Audio Technica AT4047 (used they go for $325-$350) and I like it a lot.
Old 29th July 2005
  #18


If you are committed to doing one track at a time, I'd look into the 2 channel USB interfaces with the built-in pre-amps.

They are relatively inexpensive and will work with your next computer (and the one after that, too). And, they are very portable. You could take a laptop and one of these boxes just about anywhere to track instuments.

I'm not to familiar with that market, so I won't drop any names.

If you want to track drums, you might need 4 channels.


-tINY

Old 30th July 2005
  #19
Gear Nut
if i were to buy the digi design mbox (or somthing like that) and a pre amp with 8 inputs your saying the would sound better than from my mixer strait into my soundcard? i need 8 inputs because i like to mice each drum separatly and have 2 overs heads, that way i can pan the set.
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