#1
all else being equal:
i'm using Garage Band to record with a Tascam US-428 interface. and i've mic'd my boogie with a Sure SM-57

so what if i had an M-Box and using Cubase LE?

is there any real difference in quality? i can understand the mic situation, and i think i made the standard choice... but still my recordings sound "processed" in a way. like they don't sound the way i'm hearing in my ears siting in my room and playing guitar. sounds thin maybe?
anyway, any difference?
#2
Might be the acoustics of the room that give you the sound you're hearing.
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#3
Maybe try using some kind of condenser placed somewhere else in the room to get a more....I can't think of a word. A more natural sound anyway. Using 2 cheap mics and audacity sounds way better than using 1 cheap mic and audacity. More natural anyway.
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#4
Experiment with mic placement. Of course the sound of a 57 on the speaker is going to be different than what you hear in the room, but you just gotta mess around with the placement until you hit the sweet spot.
#5
With different software, the main difference is just the ease of use, options, compatibility, stock plugins, etc. With interfaces, there is a huge difference from lowend to midlevel and high end. This difference is in the quality of the preamps and converters, as well as options and extra I/Os if you ever use them. The most important thing to your quality though is still knowledge and experience.
#6
Quote by Say Ocean
With different software, the main difference is just the ease of use, options, compatibility, stock plugins, etc. With interfaces, there is a huge difference from lowend to midlevel and high end. This difference is in the quality of the preamps and converters, as well as options and extra I/Os if you ever use them. The most important thing to your quality though is still knowledge and experience.

I'm glad someone else on UG knows stuff about recording for once.

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[quote="'[BurnTheDusk"]']Boss pedals may be built like tanks but I would rather buy a cardboard box that is on my side than pay for a tank that is working against me.
#7
Quote by sethp
all else being equal:
i'm using Garage Band to record with a Tascam US-428 interface. and i've mic'd my boogie with a Sure SM-57

so what if i had an M-Box and using Cubase LE?

is there any real difference in quality? i can understand the mic situation, and i think i made the standard choice... but still my recordings sound "processed" in a way. like they don't sound the way i'm hearing in my ears siting in my room and playing guitar. sounds thin maybe?
anyway, any difference?


The biggest may be playback latency and monitoring issues. You might take a performance hit with the Tascam.

Look at the performance specs of the two. The M-Box is a sound processor (basically a sound card)... the Tascam might just be I/O - leaving your computers cpu and sound card handling audio - as well as everything else.

The M-box takes care of all the audio freeing up computer resources. In some cases the computers on board audio may still be available for other stuff.

Get both if you actually use the control surface on the Tascam.
Last edited by 667 at Mar 18, 2009,
#8
the big issue with interfaces, as has been said is the quality of the A/D converters (and also the anti-aliasing filter, which a lot of people neglect to talk about) and the preamps, going from the Tascam to the M-Box would make a pretty big difference, but IMO the M-Box is one of the not so great interfaces in its price point (as it's main selling point is the crappy version of Pro Tools that comes with it, and you're paying a lot for that software)
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#9
Quote by Kid_Thorazine
the big issue with interfaces, as has been said is the quality of the A/D converters (and also the anti-aliasing filter, which a lot of people neglect to talk about) and the preamps, going from the Tascam to the M-Box would make a pretty big difference, but IMO the M-Box is one of the not so great interfaces in its price point (as it's main selling point is the crappy version of Pro Tools that comes with it, and you're paying a lot for that software)


^ Agreed. I'm a fan of the Edirol UA-25. It's pretty much awesome.

http://pro-audio.musiciansfriend.com/product/Edirol-UA25EX-USB-AUDIO-CAPTURE?sku=500880
Last edited by 667 at Mar 18, 2009,
#10
all fantastic answers.
i'm working on mic placement. right now its about 2 feet in front of the amp's speaker. i've had it further away, and i've had it right up close, yet still my little point-and-shoot digital camera's video mode gives a more tonally "pleasant" reproduction. its more "live" and "airy"
i wont say "accurate" though
i use the Tascam's physical A-Trim. and its jacked to almost the max, depending on where i place the mic
all other adjustments (if any) i do on Garage Band.
i don't know what all the other knobs and buttons are for on the tascam. its confusing.
but if i turn the trim pot down on the tascam the "sound graph" in the garage band window goes down to zero.

does the sure sm-57 require a pre-amp?
the info that i have is NO, but i'm wondering.

in my system software, i have selected the "Tascam US-428" selected as the "input" source.
#11
Yes, all microphones require a pre-amp. You already have one inside of your interface.

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#12
Quote by Kid_Thorazine
the big issue with interfaces, as has been said is the quality of the A/D converters (and also the anti-aliasing filter, which a lot of people neglect to talk about) and the preamps, going from the Tascam to the M-Box would make a pretty big difference, but IMO the M-Box is one of the not so great interfaces in its price point (as it's main selling point is the crappy version of Pro Tools that comes with it, and you're paying a lot for that software)


actually, i just used the example of the M-Box cuz i couldn't think of another analogy. i'm using the Tascam US-428
#13
yeah i got that, it would be well worth upgrading if you are serious about home recording.
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#14
One thing I've discovered when hooking up my newest interface...

I really dig one where I can further adjust it on the computer instead of just a direct-in interface.

My presonus USB thingy is really picky with mics that require phantom power and it's extremely easy to peak the gain on it even if the gain on it is -10dB. The Line 6 Toneport's Gearbox interface is extremely easy to dial in something usable and easy to work with. It's not going to sound as good as a high dollar interface but the simplicity makes it worth it to me.
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#15
Quote by Dr.Pain-MD
I'm glad someone else on UG knows stuff about recording for once.



It's another hobby of mine. All the recordings in my sig were done by myself in my basement with pretty minimal gear
#16
so, are the specs on the Tascam us-428 out of date? it says it has

- 24 bit D/A and A/D converters
- Four in (analog or S/PDIF) and two out simultaneously
- Records at up to 48kHz, 24-bit resolution
- Two independent MIDI I/O
- Supports unlimited banks of eight faders
- Dedicated EQ, Aux and Pan controllers

there are all sorts of knobs and buttons, and a row of sliders that i can't figure out what they do. i tried reading the manual, but most of it is gibberish to me. all i've figured out is that the trim pot increases and decreases the signal from the microphone

also, what's the difference between the sure sm-57 and a condenser mic?
#17
The SM-57 is a dynamic mic and needs no phantom power. A condenser mic needs power. Usually 48V from the mixer or preamp. The specs on the 428 look fine. If you are not having problems with noise (hiss) injected by the 428 then I would say don't worry about getting something else. The processed sound most likely has nothing to do with the Tascam.
#18
Quote by fly135
The SM-57 is a dynamic mic and needs no phantom power. A condenser mic needs power. Usually 48V from the mixer or preamp. The specs on the 428 look fine. If you are not having problems with noise (hiss) injected by the 428 then I would say don't worry about getting something else. The processed sound most likely has nothing to do with the Tascam.


so is it the mic then? cuz the little built-in mic on my point-and-shoot camera reproduces a more natural sound. more akin to what i'm actually hearing.
#19
Quote by sethp
so, are the specs on the Tascam us-428 out of date? it says it has

- 24 bit D/A and A/D converters
- Four in (analog or S/PDIF) and two out simultaneously
- Records at up to 48kHz, 24-bit resolution
- Two independent MIDI I/O
- Supports unlimited banks of eight faders
- Dedicated EQ, Aux and Pan controllers

there are all sorts of knobs and buttons, and a row of sliders that i can't figure out what they do. i tried reading the manual, but most of it is gibberish to me. all i've figured out is that the trim pot increases and decreases the signal from the microphone

also, what's the difference between the sure sm-57 and a condenser mic?

yeah, most current interfaces support higher sample rates, which you may want.
Also from what I've read the converters on this model aren't very good.

All of the faders are used to control your DAW software, but you have to set them up to do so, and how that is done depends on your software.
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Last edited by Kid_Thorazine at Mar 18, 2009,
#20
Quote by sethp
so is it the mic then? cuz the little built-in mic on my point-and-shoot camera reproduces a more natural sound. more akin to what i'm actually hearing.
I'm guessing that your SM57 is close to the amp and the mic on your camcorder is closer to your ear.
#21
Quote by fly135
I'm guessing that your SM57 is close to the amp and the mic on your camcorder is closer to your ear.


i've tried recording with the mic within a few inches of the amp's speaker. to about 1 foot away, 2 feet, 3 feet and about 4 feet away. and it always sounds processed somehow.
#22
I know what you are saying. My guitar recording don't sound the same as I hear. I haven't played with it too much. The mic I have has a switch to change the pattern. I should try playing with that. The mixer won't monkey with your signal, but the response of the mic could make the signal sound more compressed that your ear hears it.
#23
where in front of a 1X12 combo amp should the Shure SM57 be placed? How far away? at what angle to the front grille (ie: straight on-90deg, 45-deg etc)? And at what optimal distance from the front grille?
#24
There isn't a right or wrong answer. Experimentation is the key, we have no idea what your amp sounds like in your room.
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#25
so i've done a little research and it seems as though i'd benefit from a room/ambiance mic.
what would be some reasonably priced room mics? and what kind of spec's should i look for (ie: cardoidial/condenser/ribbon etc?)

also, would the sm57 benefit from a mic pre-amp?
#26
anything but maudio they hate cubase for some reason
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#27
Quote by sethp
so i've done a little research and it seems as though i'd benefit from a room/ambiance mic.
what would be some reasonably priced room mics? and what kind of spec's should i look for (ie: cardoidial/condenser/ribbon etc?)

also, would the sm57 benefit from a mic pre-amp?



Condenser mics are really good for ambiance.
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#28
PZMs are great for ambiance micing as well, and they are fairly cheap, I suggest getting two and using it as a stereo pair.
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#29
Im surprised that no one has mentioned the Apogee Duet Firewire Interface.
I picked one up about 2 moths ago and it has made all the difference in my recordings!
I havent tried recroding a mic'd guitar yet, but I have recorded vocals with a condenser mic and it's pretty great!!!

If you are at all interested in M-BOX check out Apogee Duet
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#30
the Apogee is nice but most people don't mention it because it has a limited feature set, is expensive and is Mac only.
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#31
Quote by Kid_Thorazine
the Apogee is nice but most people don't mention it because it has a limited feature set, is expensive and is Mac only.


It's expensive, true. It is ultimately good quality though and is (as far as I am aware) the best 2 channel interface in terms of audio quality there is.

I would happily ditch my 10 channel (which cost virtually the same) for a duet given the chance..
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#32
yeah,it has one of the best (reasonably affordable) converters on the market, bit as said, it is Mac only and isn't as good in terms of other features compared to many other units in the same price range.
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#33
Many interfaces have been designed specifically to handle the .... A recording
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