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Boss RC30 outputs for recording to /audio input to DAW
Old 18th May 2018
  #1
Here for the gear
 

Thread Starter
Boss RC30 outputs for recording to /audio input to DAW

Hi,

I'm trying to get the best possible recording sound from my boss RC30 to my DAW. I'm using a M audio M track (the new one) and finding that running the RC30 mono out to this then the signal from the RC30 is too hot and distorts at a reasonable recording volume. Having done a lot of research it seems the m audio instrument inputs are adjusted specifically for guitar and bass, I think this could be the problem.

So I'm thinking about using the m audio balanced inputs at the back (hyrid XLR and 1/4 inputs).

What's your opinion on using TS cables for this ? Or should I pull the trigger on TRS cables (but I don't think then RC30 is balanced out) or a di box to run it through with TS lead> di box> m audio balanced input. I'm thinking the last option would work best like of it was going to a pa., but I'm not very experienced with gear setups.

Once I have this working then I will try recording stereo with it. But first I want a good sound and not finding it :(

Appreciate any help!

Thanks
Old 18th May 2018
  #2
Gear Addict
 

DI box is your best option. You will never get a proper balanced signal into your DAW without the DI.

RC30 TS OUT>>> DI IN>>>Balanced DI out>>>>MBox Balanced IN>>>
Old 18th May 2018
  #3
Lives for gear
 

You don't need a DI box. Doesn't anyone here read specs?

The interface has both instrument and line level inputs.
The loop station has -20dB instrument levels in and out. You can connect it to the instrument level in on the interface. If the signal is too hot for you just use the line level in on the interface.

If you still get distortion, then its likely occurring in the recording of the loop. Playing back that loop through an interface is going to reveal all of its flaws because you are plugged into a Hi Fi like full frequency audio system not a system that produces all midrange like a guitar amp.

I also suggest you check the M-Audio Driver Settings. On all the M-Audio interfaces I've owned the drivers set up a DSP mixer and you can set the input and output gain levels from there. With mine I have the option of setting +4 professional line level or -10 consumer level. This is in addition to what the units volume and input levels have.

For recording I don't understand why you aren't using the USB port which is designed for transferring files. This Loop station is essentially a stand alone recorder. There is no reason to record to the DAW through an interface. You record to the loop unit, drag the files over to the computer through the USB connection, then import the file into the DAW program and continue adding tracks or mixing with your project. This insures there is no fidelity loss or changes at all.

Its also an excellent way to troubleshoot the distortion problem you're having. If you import a file and it has distortion, then the distortion has nothing to do with the interface. If its clean and the meters show the correct gain levels then you got something wrong going on with your units output levels of cable connections. Tracks are additive and the total of several loops can become greater then instrument level when combined. The issue may be some phasing issue when combines to mono too. Export a file and see how it sounds in the computer. If you got problems you'll have to work with that loop units manual to figure it out.

Oh and there is nothing here involving balanced cables. The loop station uses unbalanced outs so that's all you'll need connecting to an interface. The interface has a combination balances unbalanced input which could be set for mic level or line level but unless you're using a mic its not even in the picture and nothing can be gained using it.
Old 18th May 2018
  #4
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by wrgkmc View Post
You don't need a DI box. Doesn't anyone here read specs?

The interface has both instrument and line level inputs.
The loop station has -20dB instrument levels in and out. You can connect it to the instrument level in on the interface. If the signal is too hot for you just use the line level in on the interface.

If you still get distortion, then its likely occurring in the recording of the loop. Playing back that loop through an interface is going to reveal all of its flaws because you are plugged into a Hi Fi like full frequency audio system not a system that produces all midrange like a guitar amp.

I also suggest you check the M-Audio Driver Settings. On all the M-Audio interfaces I've owned the drivers set up a DSP mixer and you can set the input and output gain levels from there. With mine I have the option of setting +4 professional line level or -10 consumer level. This is in addition to what the units volume and input levels have.

For recording I don't understand why you aren't using the USB port which is designed for transferring files. This Loop station is essentially a stand alone recorder. There is no reason to record to the DAW through an interface. You record to the loop unit, drag the files over to the computer through the USB connection, then import the file into the DAW program and continue adding tracks or mixing with your project. This insures there is no fidelity loss or changes at all.

Its also an excellent way to troubleshoot the distortion problem you're having. If you import a file and it has distortion, then the distortion has nothing to do with the interface. If its clean and the meters show the correct gain levels then you got something wrong going on with your units output levels of cable connections. Tracks are additive and the total of several loops can become greater then instrument level when combined. The issue may be some phasing issue when combines to mono too. Export a file and see how it sounds in the computer. If you got problems you'll have to work with that loop units manual to figure it out.

Oh and there is nothing here involving balanced cables. The loop station uses unbalanced outs so that's all you'll need connecting to an interface. The interface has a combination balances unbalanced input which could be set for mic level or line level but unless you're using a mic its not even in the picture and nothing can be gained using it.
DI is still the best option. It will allow you to bypass all that crap^^^, and just make music. A balanced line from a DI will also give you more headroom, and less fiddling with levels. Plus you can use the DI for other stuff. The RC 30 has a pair of faders on the front panel, with the center detent being unity. You can adjust the output of the RC 30 from here, and make sure the output of the unit does not clip the input of the next stage. Using unbalanced cables in between connections is a pain in the ass. Go into the audio interface using balanced cables from a DI. Set all of your inputs to +4, forget that -10 unbalanced crap. You could also use the USB connection, as your computer will see the RC30 as a hard drive and mount it on the desktop. You could then edit and store the loops you create on your computer. My idea is better. Go with it....
Old 19th May 2018
  #5
Here for the gear
 

Thread Starter
Thanks for replies.

so from more research the M audio has line inputs that are altered for guitar/bass inputs to make them sound more 'amp' like, the impedance and such is changed. I think this could be causing the issue possibly.

There are no drivers for the M audio M track 2x2 its class compliant on mac.

I have ordered a di box for live performances and PA's without instrument line ins, so I will try it with the loop station for the sake of it.

I am transferring the files to my pc to backup loops, but the purpose of recording it as I want to record live sessions. I'm a live looper recording artist, I'll play, sing, use multiple instruments and have seen others with this setup without distortion. I also played live just recently into a line input and it sounded amazing through a pa, clear and pristine, even with huge loops of instruments. So I know it can be done into a DAW somehow.

The facts are pointing at the M Audio if the PA line inputs sound perfect...

Last edited by marty101; 19th May 2018 at 07:28 AM.. Reason: No drivers for Mac m audio 2x2 mtrack
Old 19th May 2018
  #6
Here for the gear
 

Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by wrgkmc View Post

The interface has both instrument and line level inputs.
The loop station has -20dB instrument levels in and out. You can connect it to the instrument level in on the interface. If the signal is too hot for you just use the line level in on the interface.
I appreciate your response, that is what I thought too, but in order to get an audible volume via the gain in the audio input, it starts clipping. At low recording volumes it works, but then I have very low volume and it's so small you can barely see the wave line past flat in the DAW.

It's not the recording within the loop as it will clip when I play guitar with some venom over a clean recording. Again through a PA it does not clip and I even tried to make it clip purposely and was surprised by how great it sounded through an average pa.

If there are no drivers for the m audio, the cables work fine, my DAW works fine, the loops station sounds great on any other system I have tried it with, then i can only see the m audio line input as causing issues. Testing it through a di box into the mic balanced ins , ie if that works without clipping will confirm that the cause. If not then im stuck!
Old 20th May 2018
  #7
Here for the gear
 

Thread Starter
To anyone who has this issue (I've read a lot of threads with this same issue bit with no one posting a solution) then indeed a DI box solved the problem. I found a few YouTube channels who have a similar setup and they used active DI boxes. I'm wondering if passive may help for reducing hiss, but overall it has improved the sound quality hugely and no longer clips even with a huge amount of layers together!

This is my setup.

Electric guitar - pedal board (10 pedals or so) - RC30 input.

Mic - TC helicon gt harmony - RC30 mic in.

Sampler (mainly for drums) - RC30 Aux in

RC30 - instrument lead - DI box - mic lead - balanced mic input M Audio M2x2 - iMac

This works nicely in stereo too to the DI to audio interface.

Thanks for the suggestion.
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