pre amp, converter question

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by lacassius, Feb 12, 2009.

  1. lacassius macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2009
    #1
    Im back with yet another question. I know i ask about a question a week but this is the only place i know to ask these questions so here goes.

    I currently use an mbox 2 pro firewire. The sound it produces form vocals is somewhat thin and not that loud. it also clips pretty easy too. there really isnt to much bad noise coming out of the box but its just lower and thinner then i'd like. Ive found a way to correct this problem a good bit through plugins using pro tools.

    What i was wondering is would it be more beneficial for me to get a better pre or converter and bypass the pre or converter built into the mbox 2? I was thinkin of getting something from black lion audio but wasnt sure which would help me with this problem more.

    any suggestions?
     
  2. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    toronto
    #2
    the mbox, though not great, isn't *that* bad. i'd check everything before it (room, mic, placement) and use of it (gainstaging and performance) before replacing the hardware.
     
  3. lacassius thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 7, 2009
    #3
    first off i wanna say thank you to zimv20...your always the 1st to answer my questions and i do appreicate it a whole lot.

    I agree with what your saying. I put up sound deadning material in my studio and it did help a good bit. also learning all the plugins through pro tools helped the most.

    but im at a point where i cant improve mic placement, sound deadning any more and cant build a sound proof box in my studio. i feel like the only improvements i can make that will work with the space I use would be to the hardware. I improved the mic placement and sound deadning but im at a loss as to what else i can do to thicken and louden the signal.

    I will continue to research for more options before i purchase new hardware
     
  4. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    toronto
    #4
    post some specifics: what kind of mic and what kind of treatment especially. can you provide a pic of your space (including placement?) and a sound clip so we can hear what you're talking about?
     
  5. lacassius thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 7, 2009
    #5
    the mic i use is a perception 120 condenser mic by akg

    treatment is that bed foam stuff i put up all over the walls covered by a kinda thick blanket

    the mic is on a mic stand in the corner of the room. picture a regular square 14x14 room. its just the 2nd bdrm of my house that i use as my studio room

    I cant post any pics because i dont own a digital camera or a cell phone that can take pics and ill try to get u a sound sample but i really dont know how to put up a link so that you could hear it.
     
  6. Drumjim85 macrumors 68030

    Drumjim85

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2007
    Location:
    DFW, TX
    #6
    A huge audio forum is www.gearslutz.com/board/
    You could start looking around there and asking questions.

    Not saying you're not welcome here, but that's a whole site dedicated to audio recording.
     
  7. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    toronto
    #7
    that's an issue, you're probably killing all your highs and not doing anything to address the lower and middle freqs.

    i don't know if you even have a budget for treating your room, but i'm willing to bet that's where you'll get the most bang for buck. check out gikacoustics.com and look at their 244 panels -- even two should improve the room.

    better yet, check out realtraps.com and look for their portable vocal booth.

    either way, start tearing down everything you've done already.
     
  8. CalumC macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2008
    Location:
    Leeds, UK
    #8
    Even then, it shouldn't be sounded that bad. I borrowed a friend's rode nt1a to use in my room, student accommodation, and got a pretty decent sound. If you're singing directly into the mic, as much as room acoustics do have an effect, you shouldn't be getting a weedy sound. Like zimv said, as uninspiring as the mbox preamps are, you shouldn't be desperately requiring new ones.
     
  9. lacassius thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2009
    #9
    zimv20 - im going to check out those websites right now. i do have a budget of course but not completly broke. ill def check it out....hows the mic? ever heard of or have any experience with.


    CalumC- Im not exactly singing but it is directly into the mic...the sound is not bad Its just very "weedy" unless I duplicate the track and use the "solidify male vocals" plugin in the EQ section. I was hoping I could get the solid sound by using 1 of the 2 not both on everysingle track which is usually 15-20 tracks.

    ....so so far we have better treament ie. portable vocal booth or better wall treatment.

    hows the mic?

    any other suggestions, big or small?
     
  10. Drumjim85 macrumors 68030

    Drumjim85

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    Oct 7, 2007
    Location:
    DFW, TX
    #10
    the mic isn't that great... >$100

    There are a few things you could upgrade in your chain. The mic, the preamp, the converter. The preamp and converter can really get going, but the mic wouldn't be that much to get a drastically different result.

    Also, that mic seems to have a pretty big bump around 9k.
     
  11. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    toronto
    #11
    i've never used it. but it's more of a question of how it works with your voice. though price is usually an indicator of quality, it's not always the case that the most expensive, or even the best mic is what's called for in a given situation.

    head down to your local dealer and have them set up a bunch of mics for you. record each one, w/ your vocals, then listen through to see which one works best. of course, it won't be the same as having it in your place, as the room is different, but maybe it'll give you a couple options to try at home. if they're willing.
     
  12. lacassius thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 7, 2009
    #12
    you know what...i definitely think your right with the mic not being that good with my voice. because when i record one of my friends verses its a little better. but when i record my 2nd friends voice its so solid that i dont even really need to use the plugins. using the plugins its superbly thick exactly how I'd want mine.

    I guess I have a weird "weedy" voice. I never noticed it on my friends mic which is just a $60 samson condenser mic. hmmm

    so it looks like new treatment, and a mic better suited for my voice....now i just have to find the right mic....definitely making progress....Much thanx to you guys for helping me
     
  13. lacassius thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2009
    #13
    ok so i did alot of researching and i came out with this

    1) rhode nt-1a
    2) portable recording booth
    3) black lion audio auteur preamp

    **1 other thing...when i check system usage while playing back a track intensive song everything is under 10% exept cpu(rtas)...thats around 70-80%...is the cpu(rtas) the proccessing power or the ram?...theres also a disk file and an cpu (elastic) but thats always under 10%. it also became laggy...i was thinking it was a combination of the hard drive and processers. am i right?

    its the white macbook 2.0/3gb ram/internal harddrive
     
  14. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #14
    I think this means your processor is the bottle neck. Time to buy an 8-core Mac Pro. But if you are running Logic you could also try "locking" a track or to.
     
  15. lacassius thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2009
    #15
    So as it turns out my mic was broken or not working right. What i did was went out and bought the same exact mic knowing i could return it if it was the same. well when i used the new same mic it worked great (at least great compared to what it did sound like)

    so being the a**hole that i am I returned the broken mic (it was bought at the same store) figuring they owed it to me.

    so now my mic is sounding so much better that im not even going to bother with the preamp or new mic yet. just the treatment.

    thanx to everyone who helped me
     
  16. Drumjim85 macrumors 68030

    Drumjim85

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    DFW, TX
  17. lacassius thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2009
    #17
    No, not cool is them selling me faulty equipment in the 1st place. If i wouldve gotten a working mic I wouldnt have done that. either way if i'dda discovered the problem and returned it right away they woulda wound up with the same faulty mic and i'dda wound up with a new working mic.

    so i dont feel bad, just like an a**hole
     
  18. pkoch1 macrumors 6502a

    pkoch1

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2007
    Location:
    Boston
    #18
    Whats not cool is the fact that you basically stole a microphone and gave them a broken one. Did you not look into warranty options through the manufacturer? Why didn't you return it when you found out it was defective?
     
  19. Muncher macrumors 65816

    Muncher

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    Apr 19, 2007
    Location:
    California
    #19
    Wait, so did the mic come broken or did it break after you started using it?
     
  20. lacassius thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2009
    #20
    thats what im saying...it was broken from day 1..i just thought since it was a cheaper mic thats how it was supposed to sound. by the time i bought a duplicate, warranty and return had expired. i wouldve neva known if i neva bought the 2nd one to test it....

    I dont kare i paid my $ for something broken and didnt realize it was broken untill to late then im going to do what i have to to make it even...and that was return to them the broken mic without them knowing. I told them i was bringin it back (the new one) because something was wrong with it just so they wouldnt sell it to anyone else
     

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