#1
Hey all, I'm currently in the market again for a new interface, if the situation calls for it. I record via my delta 44 with an audiobuddy preamp atm for my guitar. Direct line-in, as I use amp simulators.

I've settled on these three to upgrade to and replace my delta...

-PreSonus FireStudio Mobile
-M-Audio Profire 610
-Line 6 UX1 (or 2)
-Focusrite Saffire Pro 24 DSP

Would appreciate any input or experience you may have with any of these interfaces, and if you have any other suggestions, know that I only record maybe 1-2 instruments at the very most - and I'd also like to step into the world of firewire


Now to my actual dilemma...

Recently I've taken a look at the clean DI signals recorded by other users on another forum, and have noticed their tone has much more vibrancy and tone to them This hasn't much to do with playing (or rather it does, however...) I've asked some users to pm clean DI recordings of them simply strumming all open 6 strings, and I can tell a very vast difference between theirs and my samples as well (users who took a look at my DI's also chimed in saying that I have a very fat and thick tone coming from my guitar signal DI setup, whereas theirs have a very sparkly, full of life tone *yes I've changed my strings, etc. just in case) Of course not all of the users sounded the same, but they all had the same characteristic of sparkly highs and a comfy mid-range sound.

At first, I thought it may be my new pickups (Hum / Hum pickguard) that I installed a few months ago. However at one point I set my old pickguard back into my guitar (S/S/S setup) and the tone is just as muddy and overbearing in lows and low-mids with the single coils as much as the humbuckers. I'm using a mogami gold tip instrument cable, going into my audiobuddy, and then to the delta.

So I'm unsure of whether its the pickups or not. possibly my preamp and interface causing a "bottleneck" if you will, as far as tone is concerned

I then started researching about impedance, and although I don't understand it all very much, one thing I do get is that you start from a low impedance signal (your guitar) and eventually lead it to a higher impedance input (a Hi-Z port, or what-not, on your interface)


delta 44 doesn't sport Hi-Z inputs from what I understand. The inputs only have a rating of 10kohm MINIMUM (I could not find a standard rated value in the manual...)

the audiobuddy I believe has only 150k ohm value

and a guitar with passive pickups is normally rated around several hundred k ohm, correct?

I understand that the optimal setup for recording direct in guitar is to have an interface with Hi-Z inputs. Or a rated input impedance of 1M ohm
However I've also been told that simply getting a DI box and run it before my interface and do away with my preamp - will fix my issue, preferably a passive one such as the dbx dB10 Passive Direct Box


Any help would be greatly appreciated, I have no intention any time soon to be micing any amp - I just want to get the best, cleanest signal possible onto my computer, and so far - only a new interface with Hi-Z inputs seems to be the route I should take...otherwise I'm just about burned out having looked into every nook and cranny of WHY my guitar tone is the was it is off and on for the past 6 months or so, and quite frankly I'm getting tired of it
Last edited by Night at Jun 26, 2010,
#2
That was a hell of a wall of text, but from what I gathered, your guitar doesn't sound as good because you don't have instrument inputs on your interface, meaning your missing out on some of the highs. Assuming this is right, from what I can gather you wanted to upgrade your interface anyway, so just grab a new interface with a instrument input on To my knowledge all 3 of those have them, but you might wanna read through they're specs just to be sure
#3
Quote by theepiczebra
That was a hell of a wall of text, but from what I gathered, your guitar doesn't sound as good because you don't have instrument inputs on your interface, meaning your missing out on some of the highs. Assuming this is right, from what I can gather you wanted to upgrade your interface anyway, so just grab a new interface with a instrument input on To my knowledge all 3 of those have them, but you might wanna read through they're specs just to be sure



That's indeed the case, I had another thread going not too long ago when I was looking at how I wired my pickups, and was considering replacing my newly wired 500k pots with 1megs instead. However someone mentioned that if I were to do this, that it would not rid me of the muddy noise, and instead I would just have a muddy buzzy noise instead.

I tried looking into wiring it so that the tone pots rolled off the bass freq, but it didn't work out quite as well as I had hoped, and noticed no difference in tone after doing so (probably due to the cap value).

But yes, the main reason being for getting a new interface is due to this problem. I guess that if I were to get one and my problem is still not resolved, I can always return it, however most likely would only get a portion of my refund due to restocking fees etc, which I'd like to avoid.

Thanks for your input theepiczebra
Anyone else care to take a gander at my wall of text? XD
Last edited by Night at Jun 26, 2010,
#4
read through that, and im going to just start typing and try to answer a bunch of things in a semi-rambling post. cause thats just my style.

first thing, guitar pickups usually have an output impedance of 5k-15k ohms. or somewhere thereabouts. out of sheer morbid curiosity, i just opened up my strat and checked the output impedance. neck pickup with the volume at 10, output was about 5k8 ohms.

however, yes you should be looking for a hi-z input. the audio buddy inputs are for instruments, so they should suffice. yes, they are a bit on the low side impedance wise, but the real issue is that its a bit of a lower end preamp. i would think that is what is killing your sound, not necessarily the fact that the impedance is low. not that the two are unrelated, but still.

the inputs on the delta 44 are probably line inputs, so the preamp is there to pump up the signal and to change the impedance. not exactly excellent at either imo, but it works better for mics than it does guitars. i actually havent used mine a while, since pretty much everything else i have works better.

if you are happy with your delta 44, then getting a good DI box or good preamp with hi-z inputs is a good idea. if you wanted to move to firewire, then i like that profire. its what i have, and i think it sounds pretty good. instrument inputs are 1M, and i think the preamps sound better than some other stuff i have used.
#5
Quote by jof1029
read through that, and im going to just start typing and try to answer a bunch of things in a semi-rambling post. cause thats just my style.

first thing, guitar pickups usually have an output impedance of 5k-15k ohms. or somewhere thereabouts. out of sheer morbid curiosity, i just opened up my strat and checked the output impedance. neck pickup with the volume at 10, output was about 5k8 ohms.

however, yes you should be looking for a hi-z input. the audio buddy inputs are for instruments, so they should suffice. yes, they are a bit on the low side impedance wise, but the real issue is that its a bit of a lower end preamp. i would think that is what is killing your sound, not necessarily the fact that the impedance is low. not that the two are unrelated, but still.

the inputs on the delta 44 are probably line inputs, so the preamp is there to pump up the signal and to change the impedance. not exactly excellent at either imo, but it works better for mics than it does guitars. i actually havent used mine a while, since pretty much everything else i have works better.

if you are happy with your delta 44, then getting a good DI box or good preamp with hi-z inputs is a good idea. if you wanted to move to firewire, then i like that profire. its what i have, and i think it sounds pretty good. instrument inputs are 1M, and i think the preamps sound better than some other stuff i have used.


I'm inclined to recommend the profire, or the presonus, both of which i consider to be superior to the UX2
#6
Thanks a ton guys for your help I think I've narrowed it down between the m-audio profire 610 and the Focusrite Saffire Pro 24 DSP (came across it recently) I'll be doing some more reading and hopefully settle on a decision soon

As I've been told on another forum, I have a very very bad habit of overthinking things, especially on stuff I may not quite understand, to the point of insanity. Mostly due to the fact I absolutely hate buyer's remorse (don't we all?) even with cheaper items, because even if I were to get a new audio interface, I don't consider the delta 44 a waste investment (hell I had that unit since high school!!) and its been a good unit, I can hopefully still put it and the audiobuddy to good use for my acoustic recordings as I've always gotten decent recordings with that route and setup.

But in the end I know I need on thing, and that's a Hi-Z input built in preamps would be an added convenience as well! gonna check out gearslutz I think it is, someone mentioned they have extensive articles or threads on each of these units, so looks like I'll be doing some more reading )

Still open to suggestions! I've even considered just getting a Line 6 GX for the added convenience of its size and single input, and keep it to the side for when I travel, I may even just grab it instead to see if its what I'm looking for and later on buy one of the other two units for the homestead
#7
Hey guys,

I think I've settled on the Focusrite Saffire Pro 24 DSP

I'm reading some very favorable comments concerning the VRM technology for monitoring your mixes with the headphone output, and quite honestly because I'll be unloading a couple of hundred smackers on this interface alone, I won't be in a hurry to spend another 500 for a pair of monitors. A good set of headphone monitors would suffice with the results these people are getting from VRM and a pair of cans. So looks like I'm almost killing two birds with one stone
http://www.kvraudio.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=258796