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Whats up.. i need opinions. Single-Channel Preamps
Old 12th September 2011
  #1
Gear Nut
 

Whats up.. i need opinions.

So, Ill explain the basics of my studio. I have the blue blueberry mic, and the neumann TLM 103. Going into a chemeleons labs 7602 MKII with X formers mod. pre amp/eq. the output of that going into my stienberg mr816csx interface. and im using cubase 5. Now, We recently did a collab with a rapper, and He bounced his vocals down for me. ect ect. Now, My setup is good.. clearly something is missing though, because our vocals do not sound as crisp as his.. they sound.. compressed, when they have no compression kinda.. And I have gone through extreme trial and error lately. I want professional sounding vocals... and the amount of money ive put into my studio so far... I should have exactly that.. but for some reason something is holding my vocal quality back.. I was thinking it may be he mr816.. maybe I need to upgrade to a new ad/da converter? can you guys let me know what you think is going on? and if u think it is the converters.. which one would u recommend?
Old 12th September 2011
  #2
Lives for gear
 

Whats up.. i need opinions.

When people seek advice for vocal recordings, but only mention gear, but not the room, and have capable equipment... I assume the room is the weak link.
Old 12th September 2011
  #3
Gear Nut
 

I have a sound proof booth. its like 4 by 6 i believe. with 3 inch acoustic foam covering the walls/ceiling and carpet covering the floor. the door is awkwardly built so sound does leak from the booth, but barely any sound leaks into it.
Old 12th September 2011
  #4
Gear Nut
 

Could it be possibly my vocal booth is too dead? and flattening out my vocals? what could fix this.. aside from recording out of the booth.. or recording with the door open?
Old 12th September 2011
  #5
Lives for gear
Maybe you are overlooking the obvious - that his vocals sound compressed because that's his voice? I've worked with some artists and it just doesn't matter what mic I put up or how horribly I position it, they will still sound absolutely kick-ass. Maybe he just has a great voice?

I'm just saying, you are comparing apples and oranges. You can't compare your chain to his when there's another HUGE MONOLITHIC VARIABLE: your voice vs. his.

Unless you are slamming the converters, or operating the interface wrong, I can promise you it's not your audio interface.
Old 12th September 2011
  #6
Gear Nut
 

I have already considered the fact that it is his voice vs mine, but I have compared his vocals to about 7 other people's now. and its just the fact that there is clarity and quality in his vocals that I am missing. I am not sure what is going on, I dont know if my booth is too dead and its taking away from my vocals, or if i should upgrade my converters.. I am not operating the interface wrong, i have all the eq/compression on the interface shut off. same with the morphing and reverb. I keep the gain down completely on the interface (obviously). and than i have my pre's gain at its minimum allowing me to turn the output up.
Old 12th September 2011
  #7
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by PLPomh View Post
Could it be possibly my vocal booth is too dead? and flattening out my vocals? what could fix this.. aside from recording out of the booth.. or recording with the door open?
I remember Storyville coining the term "Studio Dark" or something to that effect... that referred to overly dead rooms. Here's hoping he can weigh in with some suggestions.

Maybe post two clips for us to a/b and folks can give it a shot.
Old 12th September 2011
  #8
Gear Nut
 

I will post 2 vocal samples.

This one is recorded in my booth.

zSHARE - PLPR acca.mp3

This one is recorded outside of my booth. ( there were settings I had also changed for this recording. but it didnt make much difference because i recorded in the booth right after i did this aswell. )

zSHARE - Acca out of booth.mp3
Old 12th September 2011
  #9
Gear Nut
 

to be honest, u cant really compare them to eachother because, I had reverb, and drive, eq/compression settings on my mr816 for that recording, the second one outside of the booth is without all of that stuff. i had no idea there was internal compression / eq and what not for the mr. but i would just like to hear what people think. Clearly the second one, doesnt sound nearly as flat and dead.
Old 13th September 2011
  #10
Lives for gear
 
AndyFromDenver's Avatar
If the chameleon is sort of new for you, it sometimes just takes a while to nail the sweet spot for a preamp with several variables. It took me a while to find it with an LA610, which has two gain stages (maybe three?). I don't think it's your converter though.
After looking at the layout for the chameleon (looks sweet btw) are you using the "right" impedance setting for each mic? I would just try some extremes and zero in on some ideal settings. Wouldn't hurt probably to take note of results that worked well.
Old 13th September 2011
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Dayl's Avatar
Rip up the carpet? try that.. then put it down.. i dont know... before you do anything as drastic as that, maybe try mic positions and artist proximity to mic.

I'm no mic expert but found with my set up,room etc, I was getting better vocals close mic'd from an angle.... weird but it worked.
Old 13th September 2011
  #12
Gear Nut
 

Thanks for the replies. And I am still new to the pre, but ive been doing some research, and apparently the mr816csx is good... but not very good when it come to using external pre's, because u need to plug the output of your pre directly into the line/mic channels in the mr. and the gain, even at zero is still activated. I am starting to think, this is my issue.
Old 13th September 2011
  #13
Gear Nut
 

I have decided to sell my MR and get the fireface 400, strictly for the converters seeing as thats all i need. Just need to find a buyer. but I will be getting the RME before the sale either way. anyone think this is a bad move?
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