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Old 12-03-2012, 02:59 PM   #1
AJScott
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Guitar & DI Box

Hey guys

Since I've been doing a lot of DI recording lately, just sticking my electric guitar and bass guitar straight into my interface, with the advice of a friend of mine who is doing a university music tech course he told me to purchase a DI box.

Since my guitars are passive and I'm not running them through an amp I would need an active DI box, correct?

And some of these are powered by 48v phantom power? Well my Focusrite Scarlett interface provides phantom power so there should be no issue plugging my guitars into an active DI box which is powered by phantom power from my interface, yes?

I'll need at max 2 inputs on the DI box and I'm willing to spend around 50/60 so can someone recommend me one, it will primarily be used for recordings as I know very little on DI boxes and most research reviews them in a live or DJ setting.

Thanks.
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Old 12-03-2012, 04:00 PM   #2
MatrixClaw
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Moved to correct forum.

Honestly - I'd be surprised if you heard any difference in sound quality from a DI at that price, especially one that has 2 inputs. There are some great DIs and preamps with DIs in them out there, that will make bass especially sound great, but they're not anywhere close to your budget.

The only reason I'd buy a DI for that interface is if you're clipping the inputs on it going directly into it. The sound quality of the DIs built into it are good already, even if the DI sounds better, ones in that price range are only going to show a tiny difference, that no one but yourself is going to hear.
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Old 12-03-2012, 04:06 PM   #3
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If you've got a scarlett, you don't need a separate DI box.

They have an 'Instrument input', which is pretty much a built in DI box. Having a separate one wont make much sonic difference unless you're really willing to fork out a load of cash (i.e 100 plus)
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Old 12-03-2012, 04:56 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by MatrixClaw
Moved to correct forum.

Honestly - I'd be surprised if you heard any difference in sound quality from a DI at that price, especially one that has 2 inputs. There are some great DIs and preamps with DIs in them out there, that will make bass especially sound great, but they're not anywhere close to your budget.

The only reason I'd buy a DI for that interface is if you're clipping the inputs on it going directly into it. The sound quality of the DIs built into it are good already, even if the DI sounds better, ones in that price range are only going to show a tiny difference, that no one but yourself is going to hear.



For the sake of a better sound, I find my bass clips a bit. It's loaded with some off brand EMG's which sound pretty good. How much would you recommend spending and on what product?
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:58 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJScott
For the sake of a better sound, I find my bass clips a bit. It's loaded with some off brand EMG's which sound pretty good. How much would you recommend spending and on what product?


I've got the Radial DI that's like $100. I bought it because the DI on the Mboxs were shit and the only other one Guitar Center had was made of cheap plastic. I run it even with my Saffire just because it improves the tone slightly
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Old 12-03-2012, 10:07 PM   #6
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I have a Countryman Type 85 DI that I really like. However, the difference in sound quality between it and my Saffire Pro 40, as well as an RME UFX I had before, are completely negligible. The DI inputs in my Audient ASP008 and Focusrite ISA 428 are superior; I really only use the DI as a splitter to record DI signal and an amp'd signal at once.
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Old 12-04-2012, 12:55 PM   #7
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Would a DI solve this issue?

When I plug my Seymour Duncan loaded LP into my Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 and use the instrument option on the front panel, even with the gain off when it still clips when I strum, and then selected the line input and turning up the gain so I get a good level it doesn't sound the same.

Would a DI solve that?
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Old 12-04-2012, 02:43 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AJScott
Would a DI solve this issue?

When I plug my Seymour Duncan loaded LP into my Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 and use the instrument option on the front panel, even with the gain off when it still clips when I strum, and then selected the line input and turning up the gain so I get a good level it doesn't sound the same.

Would a DI solve that?

There's no way your input should be clipping with a guitar at the lowest gain setting! Have you checked in your DAW to make sure it's actually clipping, and not just the indicator light gone funny?


An active DI would give you more control over the signal level, so I suppose it would work, but it really shouldn't be happening in the first place. If you've got a multifx pedal or something else with a level control (an overdrive pedal would work fine if you're recording distorted tones), you could try using that to reduce the signal further.
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Old 12-04-2012, 04:13 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kyle62
There's no way your input should be clipping with a guitar at the lowest gain setting! Have you checked in your DAW to make sure it's actually clipping, and not just the indicator light gone funny?

Actually, this is a known problem with the Scarletts, and the reason why I don't recommend them. The DI inputs on them are way too hot to be used for most instruments, even with the Pad engaged (on the versions that have it), it's still too hot for a lot of guitars and basses.

A DI could certainly help, since you'll be plugging in at mic level, which is much lower than instrument level. I'd just as soon take that money and buy a better interface all together, though
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