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Non-stepped annoyance...am I crazy? Studio Accessories
Old 2nd September 2007
  #1
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mosrite's Avatar
 

Talking Non-stepped annoyance...am I crazy?

This has bothered me for some time and I was hoping that you guys could help...

My stereo mic pre also has built in filters (and compressor/limiter that I probably will never use). While the gain for the pres is stepped, the controls for everything else are not.

Am I crazy in thinking that this makes the filters/comp/llimiter completely pointless in a proper stereo scenario? How can I assure accuracy in settings for both channels if the controls are not stepped?
Old 3rd September 2007
  #2
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That's funny.

I hate stepped again controls in that they tend to reduce accuracy IMHO. I especially dislike stepped controls on compressors and limiters. Can't stand that about the older version of the Red 3. "But, but, I don't want to be compressing by 1 db or 4 db, can't you just let me move the knob!?!" However, many other folks prefer the earlier stepped versions. Go figure. Different tastes.

Chances are your mic, your source something in the line will benefit from using your ears and the meters for more precise balancing than fixed 6, 5 or even 1 db increments could afford.

I can understand why mastering engineers prefer stepped controls, but they have no place in my chain for tracking or mixing.

To each their own!

All I'm saying is, I wouldn't worry about it.
Old 3rd September 2007
  #3
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I think you're missing the point here (but thanks for your contribution anyway!):

I am talking strictly within a 'stereo' micing situation (or indeed stereo mixdown situation) whereby both channels surely need to be 'treated' indentically in order to preserve true stereo, do they not?
Old 3rd September 2007
  #4
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Oh, I meant to mention that specifically in my first post, but left it out.

Are your mics perfectly balanced to within .25 db of each other? Is every circuit in each of your channel strips balanced to the same degree? I personally prefer variable controls for these purposes as well, but your preferences may vary.

However, you could argue that in building a circuit, it is easier to match channels that used stepped controls instead of variable pot.

I suppose that would be a good argument, and I might have to concede to it.
Old 3rd September 2007
  #5
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d_fu's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mosrite View Post
I am talking strictly within a 'stereo' micing situation (or indeed stereo mixdown situation) whereby both channels surely need to be 'treated' indentically in order to preserve true stereo, do they not?
Maybe I'm missing you point, too, but in the kind of recording you'd mostly be doing, why would you want to apply filters/comp/llimiter during recording...?
Old 3rd September 2007
  #6
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Quote:
Maybe I'm missing you point, too, but in the kind of recording you'd mostly be doing, why would you want to apply filters/comp/llimiter during recording...?
I wouldn't. I'm just desperately trying to find a use for this stuff !!

I'm going to be recording some folk guitar/singer duos soon and felt that I could maybe give the onboard comp/limiter a shot either on the front end or run it through during the mix. You see it's meant to be a nice comp/limiter and it seems a shame to not be utilising it. BUT, I can't get over this variable pot thing..but then maybe I'm thinking too much. Perhaps the accuracy is close enough by sight etc.
Old 3rd September 2007
  #7
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Hi Rob

Yes, I think sight and ears are good for judging balance. Also the assumption that stepped are accurate is also a debatable point. They certainly give one the secure feeling of accuracy.
Old 4th September 2007
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mosrite View Post
I wouldn't. I'm just desperately trying to find a use for this stuff !!
Sure, you paid for it, so it had better be useful... heh heh
What kind of preamp is this, anyway..?
Old 4th September 2007
  #9
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mosrite's Avatar
 

Amek.

The pres are most definitely useful, hence my keeping of the unit.
Old 4th September 2007
  #10
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Mazo Audio's Avatar
 

Amek.

Hello, I also have that Amek unit, it is the DMCL is it not?
Two things: 1) you need not let the lack of stepped controls prevent you from using the compressors, if you eyeball each set of controls to be similar (on a unit that is calibrated nicely such as that one) then I doubt you would be able to hear a problem in the stereo image. Just be judicious in you settings. It's important to listen as you operate these controls!
2) You can use the Link switch on compressor A to lock the two compressors together.

Just be careful, although it's a great compressor it hits really hard. I wouldn't put the attack dial lower than 12:00 (and use gental ratio's) until you get used to it or you may squash your tracks harder than you think!

Peace
Old 4th September 2007
  #11
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Hi Mazo Audio,

Could you confirm what the link button actually does?

Does channel 2 follow channel 1? And what is actually linked - just attack and release or all the functions?

Thanks,
Old 4th September 2007
  #12
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According to the manual, if you press the link A-B botton, it should be controlled by the B controls. I've forgotton since the last time I used it that way but it should work.
It doesn't say which of the controls link, maybe we could assume it's all of them, it should b e pretty easy to put some signal through it and test it out, I think you really need to LISTEN to the compressor while adjusting the controls to find out how it works, it could at least make a very nice limiter to prevent overs on gigs where you didn't get much of a sound check.

Hope this helps!
Old 4th September 2007
  #13
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I would rather see a "stereo" mic pre as a dual mic pre that can be used for stereo recordings. That does not imply only stereo recordings but also dual channel recordings in which the separate (and not stepping) controls of thee compressors are much more of use.
Old 5th September 2007
  #14
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Quote:
it could at least make a very nice limiter to prevent overs on gigs where you didn't get much of a sound check.
True except that I usually record with enough headroom to really not make this an issue.

Was thinking of using the limiter for the mix though, might be nicer than the software I have access to at present.

Cheers for your input anyway.

BTW, just out of interest, how do you find the ADC module in it? I will be comparing it to a Lavry Blue this week and am intrigued as to how it performs. Have you ever tested it against anything?
Old 5th September 2007
  #15
Gear Addict
 

I just had to mention I find stepped reassuring, and don't miss the minute details in between steps. Also handy for recalling a setting "set gain to tenth notch". Or in the case of my more pedestrian pres "set gain to 2 notches before full".

Then again, maybe I should just let go and use the force.
Old 5th September 2007
  #16
Gear Maniac
 
Mazo Audio's Avatar
 

Hello Mosrite have you gotten any further w/ your DMCL? Please note that there are TWO link switches on the unit. The one on the left (channel A) links side A to side B. The one on the right (channel B) is used to link another external unit. that confused me for awhile!
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