dex Otaku

Hints: How to Control Your Levels and Make Undistorted Recordings

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I'm doing some basic line-in analog recording. CD player-to-minidisc. Is there a difference in clarity between these 2 options?:

1. Volume of CD player set high; minidisc recording levels set low.

2. Volume of CD player set low; minidisc recording levels set high.

Which one will produce the cleanest sound?

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I'm doing some basic line-in analog recording. CD player-to-minidisc. Is there a difference in clarity between these 2 options?:

1. Volume of CD player set high; minidisc recording levels set low.

2. Volume of CD player set low; minidisc recording levels set high.

Which one will produce the cleanest sound?

Option #1 should produce higher quality results, as long as the output doesn't produce noticeable distortion at high volumes.

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A headphone amp won't work as a mic preamp. It's not sending any plug-in power to the mic. I've tried it--no go.

The reason high-volume input--minidisc levels set low works better is that you're putting in more signal and less noise. Raising the level on the MD raises the level of both the incoming signal and its accompanying noise, so when the incoming signal is loud, it drowns out the noise.

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I'm doing some basic line-in analog recording. CD player-to-minidisc. Is there a difference in clarity between these 2 options?:

1. Volume of CD player set high; minidisc recording levels set low.

2. Volume of CD player set low; minidisc recording levels set high.

Which one will produce the cleanest sound?

definately Option #1

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[quote name='A440' date='May 13 2006, 06:23 AM' post='98164']
Dex, this is great as always. Someday we'll have to figure out why your in-ear binaurals don't overload the preamp while my BMC-2 do. But in the meantime, I hope this helps people. 
I fear you're asking the impossible, Volta. Absolutely the only thing that matters in a venue is what your ears tell you, not your eyes.  Visual cues only go so far. In a small club, relocating by just a foot or two can suddenly clear up the mix. 

My soundman in ear binaurals distort when I record with them to my MZ-NH700. Have you found the solution to this? I was recording with the record level set to 3(!) but still it will distort.

thanks,

Hallvardur

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The possible solution is using a battery module into Line-in. Deep bass, even at low levels, overloads the mic preamp. A battery module provides power to the mics, letting them handle more volume, and going into Line-in bypasses the mic preamp. Going straight into mic-in is good for speech, but not for anything amplified.

If you're already going mic-->battery module-->line-in and you're still getting distortion, then the mics themselves just can't handle the volume and that's where the distortion is coming from. That would mean you need different, lower-sensitivity mics. Maybe Soundman would let you swap for a different model.

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looks like the original post could use some cleanup with the tags... :)

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M-Audio now has an inline 10db Pad for 1/8 inch stereo mic inputs , it also allows the voltage to pass thru it , so the mics still get power !!

MT_10db_Pad.jpg

tell me that doesnt work for ya , I want one , I will go order it next week.

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Wish it was on a cord. The weight of that thing is going to put major strain on the mic jack.

Guess you an add a little extension cord, but what were they thinking?

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not really , I dont think it will be that heavy , they were looking at the mic jack for the MicroTrack2 , and it is plasticky the MD is metal housed .................. but if your deck is sitting down , then it wouldnt matter it would support itself. But yeah the idea of an extension cord is a very good one, allowing the MD to stay in a tight pouch .I can see that .

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It's not weight so much as leverage. With no extension cord, you'd plug your mic jack into one end so you have this two-inch lever into the 3/8" jack. Leaving the unit still is fine, but I do a lot of recording with the unit hidden in a pocket, and it's going to wiggle. An extension cord probably wouldn't be bad using it with the MicroTrack either, especially if it's got a less robust jack.

I try not to use any compact plug-in plug-out adapters like this one, including mono-to-stereo, headphone splitters, etc. Why put strain on an expensive built-in jack when you can just get a little extension cord?

Complaints aside, I'm happy the thing exists. With an extension cord, this would be a serious upgrade to the trusty Radio Shack headphone volume cord as attenuator. And since the Radio Shack gizmos wear out, it's not that much more expensive in the long run.

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Hi

Hoping you guys can shed some light on my problem - I've posted this elsewhere but as yet no response.

I have recently bought a pair of binaural mics to use with my MZ-RH1 and a battery box without bass roll-off. I intend to record live rock and pop concerts, both indoor and outdoor.

I decided to test the new mics by recording some rock music played on my stereo at a loud but reasonable level. The results using the mics and battery box connected to the Line-In input gave a very low recording level and a very quiet recording. I have set the record levels manually and I found that I have to crank the record levels up to max (30 on my RH1) to give only 2 or 3 bars on the RH1 meters - is this normal?

Perhaps the battery box is to blame - It carries a single 1.5 volt AA battery. I have read that most battery boxes use a 9 volt battery. Would a 9 volt supply allow increase the amount of gain I could apply?

The mic capsules are a pair of Panasonic WM-61s.

Any help would be most welcome.

Edited by druid

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Hi, a rock concert should be significantly louder than recording your stereo, so you should get better levels in the field. A higher voltage does increase the gain a bit, but not significantly.

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Hi, a rock concert should be significantly louder than recording your stereo, so you should get better levels in the field. A higher voltage does increase the gain a bit, but not significantly.

Thanks Greenmachine. I will test my set-up at a pub gig at the weekend.

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I have a problem with *really* loud sounds - like explosions. I've used AGC LoudMusic and low sensitivity and my Behringer ECM8000's (18VDC phantom power from a 9V battery cluster on XLR connections - adapted to unbalanced mini-stereo jacks for my RH910) give recordings that don't clip (when viewed in Audacity) but look rather like the microphones themselves are being overdriven - like the condenser halves are being driven into contact with each other. If this is true, then I need to actually attenuate the peak pressures and I'm not sure how to do this in a way that's flat WRT frequence (the Behringer's are flat spectrally). Anyone have any ideas on VERY loud sounds?

Thanks,

Patti

EDIT: upon further reading, it may be that I need a higher phantom voltage

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