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DAW internal volume/distortion - anyone see this before?
Old 26th August 2007
  #1
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DAW internal volume/distortion - anyone see this before?

I decided to dig deep into my own library of sounds the other night and imported some nice basses, etc. Once they were imported into cubase - some of them sounded like they had distortion on them. Took me a while to figure out what is was.. I lowered the volume on that track/sound and the distortion went away. So obviously the volume was the problem.

What makes me confused is that my MOTU soundcards did not show any signs of volume being too loud. On the opposite - it showed very low volumes overall.

Throughout the years, I always thought that the volume that the soundcards show are the "final" ones. If they show red, You are overloading. But now I encountered something were the sound/track is too loud, but that is not reflected on the soundcard meters..

Is this normal? You see the same thing on your DAW?
Old 26th August 2007
  #2
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Geert van den Berg's Avatar
 

What are you monitoring thru? Do you have a monitor controler, which monitors? Maybe you had distortion elsewhere in the chain? Maybe your monitors couldn't handle the bass?
Old 26th August 2007
  #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geert van den Berg View Post
What are you monitoring thru? Do you have a monitor controler, which monitors? Maybe you had distortion elsewhere in the chain? Maybe your monitors couldn't handle the bass?
nope.. I went through the summing mixer - my 2 pairs of monitors, etc.. (genelecs).. Everything.. And after checking everything - the only thing was some sounds came out distorted once imported into cubase. And I got rid of the distortion when I lowered the volume (inside cubase) on that track. What I dont understand is why (if the track was too loud) - it wasnt reflected in the sound card. I always been under the impression that if you had too loud volumes in the DAW (cubase, or whatever) - that would also show on the soundcard meters.. But that didnt happen here.. So Im clueless.
Old 26th August 2007
  #4
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Geert van den Berg's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by perx View Post
I went through the summing mixer - my 2 pairs of monitors, etc.. (genelecs)..
Summing mixer? Which one?

The analog part of your chain can still distort, even if your MOTU shows no signs of overs.

Have you tried playing back the files with another audio application? (Are you using a Mac/OS X, if so you can also play the audio from the Finder or with Quicktime).

Which Motu interface do you have? Does it have a headphone output? Have you tried that also?

I am not a Cubase expert, but maybe the master fader was raised higher than the amount you lowered on the channel, so the total would still be above 0dB.
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