Go Back   UG Community @ Ultimate-Guitar.Com > Music > Recordings
User Name  
Password
Search:

Reply
Old 06-29-2014, 12:20 PM   #1
ultimate_sound
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Does a sound card affect (vst) sound / recording quality ?

Good day ,

I've been asking this around for quite a while and I get mixed answers...

Does the quality of the sound card affect the quality of your recording or the quality of the virtual instruments used ?

I have an effects processor ( Line6 HD Pod ) and I plug it into the PC through USB ... Will recordings sound better if I have a dedicated sound card and plug it into the PC through the sound card?

Will vsts like Guitar Rig or effects or cabinet impulse responses sound better ?

All I surely know is that a quality sound card will allow you to hear yourself play through the PC in real time , as in no delays ( well , extremely small ones that are impossible to notice ).

Thank you for reading ( and hopefully answering )
ultimate_sound is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-29-2014, 04:48 PM   #2
RabidBadger
Foaming at the mouth...
 
Join Date: May 2014
Hello there.

The answer to your questions is more or less complex depending on how detailed you want the answer to be. Heres my take on the basics:

1. A god soundcard will give you better sound than a bad one. This can be because of better components limiting the unwanted noise you get as well as the signal you are trying to capture, or by creating a more accurate digital representation of the sound.

2. For most hobbyists recording music the more important component is the pre-amp rather than the soundcard (thats my opinion anyway - feel free to flame if people think I'm wrong). Many consumer soundcards aimed at audio recording have built in pre-amps (these are the things responsible for taking mic level signals and boosting them to a recordable level) - but the pre-amp and the soundcard need not be the same device and should not be considered the same thing.

3. A good pre-amp with an average soundcard will give a good sound for a hobbyist. A ropey pre-amp cannot be fixed with a good soundcard.

4. To my mind there is no way that the soundcard should affect the way VSTs or any other digital processing works - these are algorithms at work and the processing is done by your CPU, not the soundcard.

5. Despite point 4 above, the soundcard and/or pre-amp will affect the sound going into the VSTs - so if you are sending a dirty, horrible signal to the VST then it will act on all of the dirty signal (within whatever limits the VST has- so the result you get out of the VST will be different with each different combination of hardware. Whether or not it is a noticeable difference depends on a lot of factors I guess.

6. Always remember the mantra "Garbage in is garbage out!!!!!"

Thats my opinion on the matter. Hope it's helpful.

Cheers
RabidBadger is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-29-2014, 11:07 PM   #3
chatterbox272
Registered User
 
chatterbox272's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Perth, Western Australia
If by soundcard you mean interface then yes, low latency is better for realtime playback and yes there is going to be an improvement in the quality of playback, especially in the higher frequencies. Whether you'll be able to tell is another story, I usually can't but some people swear they can. That's a decision you'll have to make yourself.

If by soundcard you mean something in the computer itself then no not really. Those aren't usually used much for proper recording so they have little to no effect on anything.

And RabidBadger, if you can find separate AD/DA converters and Preamps that sound better than the all-in-one interfaces whilst staying in the sub-$300 price range that most of the beginners are in then I'll eat my shoe on the way to my local music shop to purchase the aforementioned converters/preamps.
__________________
Masquerade: #19


Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael J. Caboose
Time isn't made out of lines, it is made out of circles. That is why clocks are round.
chatterbox272 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-2014, 03:42 PM   #4
RabidBadger
Foaming at the mouth...
 
Join Date: May 2014
Quote:
Originally Posted by chatterbox272

And RabidBadger, if you can find separate AD/DA converters and Preamps that sound better than the all-in-one interfaces whilst staying in the sub-$300 price range that most of the beginners are in then I'll eat my shoe on the way to my local music shop to purchase the aforementioned converters/preamps.



I wasn't really trying t suggest that you can. My point was really meant to be about the fact that there are 2 parts you need to consider when looking at a "soundcard". My view may well be coloured by the fact I use an M-Audio Delta 66 with the OMNI breakout box - so thy are discrete units (you can get the delta 66 card on its own with just cables or with the standard breakout box - both require some form of additional pre-amp in order to record guitars, mics etc). I guess that my points made it sound like they are always seperate and that clearly is not the case. I should really have said a soundcard consists of 2 stages - the pre-amp and the AD/DA converters.

Sorry if I was misleading, it was unintentional.

Looks like shoe is still off your menu Chaterbox272.
RabidBadger is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 11:16 PM.

Forum Archives / About / Terms of Use / Advertise / Contact / Ultimate-Guitar.Com © 2014
Powered by: vBulletin Version 3.0.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.