#1
I currently use a cheap Guitar Link USB interface to record into Reaper or Logic, running the sound through Guitar Rig 5. I am trying to do high quality covers (recording audio and video separately) but the sound isn't great. I keep the buffer size in the preferences fairly low, because when I turn it up the latency tends to go really high. Latency also increases with time, so I have to unplug the interface every 20 minutes or so... annoying as hell
I also get a lot of background amp sound, and I don't know whether this is due to the cable, interface or guitar rig. I have to turn the noise gate right up, which reduces the quality and makes it nearly impossible to hear hammer ons or tapping.

My question is, is it worth investing in a better interface such as the scarlett 2i4 (I've forgotten the actual name) or Peavey X-port guitar USB interface? Does it make a huge difference? And how can I get rid of the amp noise (I can hear it when I'm not even playing)?

I have a line 6 POD 2.0, and this one guy said that if I go guitar - pod - interface - mac then it will sound much better. Is this true?

Thanks in advance for any replies
#2
Getting a better interface helps tons. Biggest problem is the lack of decent pre-amps on cheap interfaces/jack to USB solutions. Your guitar signal is very fragile and small it needs a big amount of amplification to turn into anything decent. This however is a very delicate process, and as such cheaper interfaces really botch this up. They will often colour the sound, remove frequencies and introduce humming or hiss. Now you'd think all of these could be fixed with after processing but you can't.

Lost frequencies can never be recoved since you don't know how they sound without hearing them, using a EQ to add frequencies is not the same thing. Furthermore hiss is simply a dealkiller for recording high quality audio.

I've personally got a Scarlett 2i4 which I'm very happy with, the pre-amps are killer and also do really well for vocal recording and bass recording. It's both more "spanky" and has much more bass present then my previous attempts (Digitech RP250 and a Maya USB40)

Going POD -> Interface might work, since your POD will act as the pre-amp instead of the USB interface. Plus the POD has some nice guitar tones I believe.

If you want to make "high quality covers" I don't think you can really skip out on a good interface though. Difference is rather small in the big picture but in my opinion it's part of the distinction between "medium quality" and "high quality".

I used a 2i4 on this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uRFT4ImKakQ so check it out to see what it's capable of. The guitars are about 80% VST and 20% actual amp.

Good luck with your covers!
Guitasr:
Cort KX-Custom
ESP LTD M-200FM
Amp:
Engl Powerball
Misc:
Focusrite Scarlet 2i4
#3
Quote by pinguinpanic
Getting a better interface helps tons. Biggest problem is the lack of decent pre-amps on cheap interfaces/jack to USB solutions. Your guitar signal is very fragile and small it needs a big amount of amplification to turn into anything decent. This however is a very delicate process, and as such cheaper interfaces really botch this up. They will often colour the sound, remove frequencies and introduce humming or hiss. Now you'd think all of these could be fixed with after processing but you can't.

Lost frequencies can never be recoved since you don't know how they sound without hearing them, using a EQ to add frequencies is not the same thing. Furthermore hiss is simply a dealkiller for recording high quality audio.

I've personally got a Scarlett 2i4 which I'm very happy with, the pre-amps are killer and also do really well for vocal recording and bass recording. It's both more "spanky" and has much more bass present then my previous attempts (Digitech RP250 and a Maya USB40)

Going POD -> Interface might work, since your POD will act as the pre-amp instead of the USB interface. Plus the POD has some nice guitar tones I believe.

If you want to make "high quality covers" I don't think you can really skip out on a good interface though. Difference is rather small in the big picture but in my opinion it's part of the distinction between "medium quality" and "high quality".

I used a 2i4 on this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uRFT4ImKakQ so check it out to see what it's capable of. The guitars are about 80% VST and 20% actual amp.

Good luck with your covers!


Well, the way I've done it up to now was record clean (the Guitar link interface has no such things as pre-amps haha) and used an amp simulator plug-in (guitar rig 5) to change the sound. Apparently guitar rig 5 is supposed to be a really good VST amp simulator, but I've also heard people praising the 'LePou' plug-ins. Just wondering, what VST's do you use in that cover? It sounds really professional, just awesome dude I'm gonna try out the pod - interface option, and if that doesn't work then I might sell my pod and buy the scarlett interface.
I'm gonna subscribe btw :P
#4
If you're thinking of upgrading, Focusrite is a great place to start. I've been using the Saffire Pro 14 for a while, and as PenguinPanic says, the preamps are clean, crisp and great for the overall signal.

What's more important is the converters - changing the analogue signal from your guitar to a digital signal for your amp and back again to your speakers. The converters in the Focusrite are great for home recording. They're not brilliant in the grand scheme of things, but mere mortals don't have enough money for the good ones!

Unless I miss-read, you've not mentioned what DAW / program you're using. You have a Mac, so I assume Garageband. There's nothing wrong with this, but if you want something better, you can pick up a DigiDesigns Mbox (one of the newer ones) for around £150 with Pro Tools LE. This will help shape your sound all round, not just on the inputs.

As for plugins, Google free ones. www.musicradar.com did a feature not too long ago on some pretty cool and interesting ones for free, so have a look there.

Hope that helps mate.

http://youtu.be/f1lejEs25hQ - I used the Pro 14 on this demo, and Pro Tools.
#5
I use either Reaper or Logic.. and as for the plug ins I thought guitar rig was supposed to be really good :/ will there be a rather big difference upgrading from guitar link to focusrite interface? I might sell my pod 2.0 and gather up some more money for the focusrite.
Thanks for the reply
#6
Quote by mickel_w
Well, the way I've done it up to now was record clean (the Guitar link interface has no such things as pre-amps haha) and used an amp simulator plug-in (guitar rig 5) to change the sound. Apparently guitar rig 5 is supposed to be a really good VST amp simulator, but I've also heard people praising the 'LePou' plug-ins. Just wondering, what VST's do you use in that cover? It sounds really professional, just awesome dude I'm gonna try out the pod - interface option, and if that doesn't work then I might sell my pod and buy the scarlett interface.
I'm gonna subscribe btw :P


I'm a big fan of LePou plug-ins myself too. The (VST) setup for the recording was:
BTE Vintage Overdrive -> LePou LeGion -> LePou LeCab

The impulse file I used on LeCab are "Travis Mesa Impulses". I don't remember where I got those but they are taken from a Mesa 4x12 that sounds pretty rad for the tone I'm going for. There was quite some post EQ I believe though. High pass on the lows to make room for the bass and the kick and I think there was also a scoop somewhere in the higher mids/highs. VST amps have a tendecy to be too fizzy for my taste.

I think Guitar Rig is more geared toward giving direct feedback for when you're practicing etc. instead of recording. But I'm not really sure on that. You could try using Guitar Rig's amp simulation and try using LeCab and impulses for the cabinet. Cabinet simulation is ussually the weakness of amp simulation, but impulse loaders definitely work for me.
Guitasr:
Cort KX-Custom
ESP LTD M-200FM
Amp:
Engl Powerball
Misc:
Focusrite Scarlet 2i4