New recording gear day

Discussion in 'Recording Studio' started by Heket, Jul 6, 2013.

  1. Heket

    Heket Well-Known Member

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    "I just want to go get some strings"

    Those famous last words. Went for strings, came out with a whole bunch of recording gear. And some strings!

    I've been wanting new PC speakers for yonks as my rather old set are just about done with life. As recently I have become more interested in recording I decided I wanted to combine the two and get a set of PC speakers that I could use as recording monitors. At the same time I was going to "just look" at microphones, not expecting to get any of the rest at all.

    As I was talking to the salesman he told me about a nice pair of secondhand speakers that he had and went through the audio interfaces for use with them and the microphone. Suddenly I'd paid for my speakers, microphone and audio interface (and strings!) and was out of the door before I could find anything else! I had come to the store by train but luckily I wasn't alone. My poor boyfriend had to carry the speakers.

    I'm hoping this will all satisfy my desire to record the tone from my Vox amps (and maybe even singing...) and work on it satisfactorily. I have yet to test everything properly as I have spent all day at the beach (a music shop at the beach! :applause:) and I'm feeling gloriously lazy right about now. But I do like to show my new stuff!

    [​IMG]

    PS Sadly I caught sight of an SGJ which they had cruelly put just next to the door. SGJ - I've got my eye on you. :squint:
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2013
    shreddy bender, dbb, Biddlin and 2 others like this.
  2. Tobacco Worm

    Tobacco Worm Well-Known Member

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    Ah ha! If we were playing cricket I'd say "Well batted!":applause:

    Now you're off into the strange new world of recording with a mike eh? And all that new cabling and monitors and new interface too? Oh my, we will be expecting some masterpieces shortly you know.:fingersx:

    Well batted indeed!

    Wade
     
  3. thatbastarddon

    thatbastarddon Well-Known Member

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    Congratulations! Looks like a nice little set up! I have heard some good things about those wharfdale monitors, and the scarlet interfaces.
    :dude:
    :applause:

    Don
     
  4. Heket

    Heket Well-Known Member

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    Thanks :D

    I just tested the monitors and interface and I got sound out of them, which is good :p Haven't got around to fiddling with the mic yet but I'm going to set everything up then spend the rest of my time with my Squier this afternoon. Should really be spending more time outdoors in this wonderful weather!

    I tell ya, these speakers look like serious business next to the rest of my computer setup. I was looking at a pair of Samson speakers for a similar price, but were recommended these as the salesman said they would be better for me at the same sort of price point (a bit cheaper actually, but second hand so more 'bang for the buck'). They're Wharfedale Diamond 8 Pro. Oh and the mic is a Sennheiser e835. I spent a lot of time talking to the microphone specialist and he recommended this over what I was going to for, an SM57. He said this will do guitar just as well but vocals (hah!) better.
     
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  5. Biddlin

    Biddlin Well-Known Member

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    Heaven knows the economy needs a boost, so good on ya for doing your part.:applause:My drummer has those same wharfedales on his rig . They're great . I'm working on a vaccination for the SG virus, but testing is proving to be expensive.:(
    Seriously, it looks like great gear and I can't wait to hear the resulting product.
    Biddlin ;>)/
     
  6. dbb

    dbb Well-Known Member

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    Cool!

    Did the Focusrite come with a DAW? Or are you going to use the one you got with your amp?
     
  7. Heket

    Heket Well-Known Member

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    Hmm it looks like it comes with something called Ableton Live Lite and it has its own Scarlett Plugins - I don't know what those are yet. I currently use Audacity anyway as Cubase was too much for a beginner to handle.

    Having a bit less luck with connecting everything to my PC because of digital noise. It makes a low, radio-style crunchy crackle when I open programs and internet tabs. It's not esspecially loud or even that annoying, but I want to get rid of it if possible. Am currently in the process of figuring out where it comes from - the power supply (external and/or internal), the motherboard connections or something else I haven't thought of yet.
     
  8. shreddy bender

    shreddy bender Well-Known Member

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    what an age we live in! used to be you'd go into a studio with hundreds of thouands of dollars in gear to record an album and that would cost thousands! now we can spend waaaay less money and pump out the music until the cows come home and it still sounds better than some things i've heard from "professional" studios.
    congrats on your new "strings"! have fun with them!
     
  9. Tobacco Worm

    Tobacco Worm Well-Known Member

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    Oh I share you pain with Cubase! That one came with my former Zoom processor. It was 100% impossible to use and I was so frustrated I almost never attempted using the computer to record ever again. Thank goodness for Audacity.

    I'm curious about the noise you're getting with that interface and such. But I'm the world's worst at computer stuff. In my world if it fails, I shoot it! But I believe the constables in your area might take a dim view on that sort of thing eh? Oh, you'll work it out I'm sure. :fingersx: But just in case, I've opened up my "Ship-N-Shoot" service now so if anything needs to be obliterated by heavy caliber weapons, sent it to me and I'll blow it to bits! :laugh2:

    [​IMG]

    Wade, The Original Master-Blaster![​IMG]
     
  10. smitty_p

    smitty_p Well-Known Member

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    How close are you sitting to your computer with your guitar when you're messing with your computer?
     
  11. Heket

    Heket Well-Known Member

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    Today I wasn't using my guitar at all, it took me so long just to set everything up as a plain pair of computer speakers (PC) and work through the variables I had so far. Usually I'd sit on a sofa with the guitar and my laptop (not PC) on the floor in front of me so I can press the record button with my toe. That's without having monitors though, so that'd have to change. I don't see myself hefting these monitors to the area where I record on a regular basis so most of the time I'd record a track then disconnect my laptop or put the file on the network to work with the monitors later. It takes some walking between two rooms, but it was the most budget friendly solution for now - I needed PC speakers, I wanted some studio monitors. My headphones just weren't revealing the tones I was hearing everywhere else.
     
  12. Dreamscape

    Dreamscape Active Member

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    I am with you on Cubase Tobacco Worm,I came close to smashing my laptop to bits trying to figure out Cubase LE4, Audacity is much better :)
     
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  13. dbb

    dbb Well-Known Member

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    Noise is an issue. It could be everything form a bad cable to problems (bugs) with certain programs working together - there is a BIG list or compatability issues on the AVID website and forum about problems with Pro Tools and that DAW is the industry standard.

    Ain't that the truth!

    I could never record albums/CD's in my youth because of the financial issues. Now for less than the price of milk you can buy the cow...even a few cows.
    As soon as I could afford a portastudio/DAWS I was off.

    I'm thankful for all the years that I had a consumer/demo grade 4 track 1/4" reel to reel or cassette 4 track studio - but none of them were "broadcast" quality. Now we can all make professional music at home for less actual expense.

    And as for me, the old way sucked and all the record companies and expensive studios can kiss my ...uh....DAWS.



    I've seen good results with both programs; one buddy of mine uses Cubase LE and masters in Audacity, and makes a nice product. But he has a lot of computer power.

    Wade, none of these programs will work really well with old computers...and some require high-speed dial up to download all the pertinent details.

    My suggestion - set it all up in the same room, your best studio monitors, some cheapshit computer speakers as a bad reference, and some semi-decent headphones.

    You will appreciate it being a unified system. It's easier to move a lap-top. If you need to leave the PC speakers (you bad reference) in the secondary location that's OK, you are used to moving the laptop.

    Bad reference is a necessity when mixing, because even though we now can record at home with brilliant quality, most people listen through PC speakers or earbuds. Sad but true. So a mix has to sound good through studio monitors or the lowest common denominator speaker or headphone.

    In the old days we used a set of car radio speakers ( 4x6 or 6x8 oval) to approximate AM radio reception as our "bad reference" monitors. You'd see a studio with great gear but above the mixer desk was a set of the worst common car speakers available, often powered by an appropriately dismal power amp. Remember, if your mix does not sound good on crappy speakers, it's a crappy mix!

    Maybe it's worth the purchase of some garage sale/flea market computer speakers as you bad reference monitors and leave your better PC speakers where the are most used.
     
  14. sgtbeefheart

    sgtbeefheart Well-Known Member

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    What operating system is on your PC?
     
  15. dbb

    dbb Well-Known Member

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    BTW, Anita, Ableton is a major league DAWS, but mostly among the trance/dubstep/drum and bass/etc crowd.

    There is a controller that looks like a Star Trek game.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. smitty_p

    smitty_p Well-Known Member

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    How are your connections being made? Are you, by any chance, connecting an analog audio connection to or from the recording interface and your PC? Are you only using USB?
     
  17. Heket

    Heket Well-Known Member

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    David - good point about having the bad reference. I sometimes save what I record to my MP3 player, which I listen to with earphones, so that's a good way to see how it sounds to the average listener.

    Sarge, my PC has Windows 7 and my laptop has Windows 8. I have Windows 8 for my PC too, but have so far been too lazy to install it yet.

    Smitty, The connections are:
    Audio interface -> PC via USB
    Monitors -> Audio Interface via standard instrument cables

    Last night after fiddling about with varying configurations of computers, sockets, extensions and computer ports I have got he background noise down to a minimum. It's still not as quiet is when connecting through a laptop, but it's good enough. It's about the same as I hear through my other half's middle speaker for his PC sound system. It is to do with power, either the extensions I use or the general house supply. It's certainly livable and most of the time unnoticible.
     
  18. Tobacco Worm

    Tobacco Worm Well-Known Member

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    Anita it sounds like you're isolating the problem well. You might recall last year I had fits with my amp/pedals with this awful hum and such. Later found that it was due to a bad circuit breaker in the old hose I'm in that was the issue. Replaced it and all was well in the kingdom so to speak. But I found that by accident really. So you just never know sometimes what underlying cause is there to trip ya up.

    I saw where you have the monitors running through instrument cables. Shielded I presume? :hmm: Lord knows I'm no computer whiz, but it would appear that speakers require standard two wire speaker cable, as shielded causes problems with amps and PA stuff. I know what to do with amps and such and am just guessing with the computer stuff here really...:dunno:
     
  19. Heket

    Heket Well-Known Member

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    I'm now sitting in the dark so I don't attract bugs in through the window, so I can't see whether the cables are shielded or not! There isn't an option for the two wire ones on the back of the monitor, unless you can attach the wires to a quarter inch jack.
     
  20. thatbastarddon

    thatbastarddon Well-Known Member

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    The power amp's for those speakers are built in to them...correct? I would presume so, since i did not see another power amp in your purchase. Do they each have a volume knob on the back?
    If they are you should be using balanced(either xlr, or very likely TRS) cables, shielded is good in this application.
     

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