Help needed with my setup

Creating a home studio for recording the classical guitar. Equipment, software and recording techniques. Amplification for live performance.
fraim
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Help needed with my setup

Postby fraim » Tue Feb 07, 2017 1:30 pm

With my setup described below, my recordings still sound like a banjo.
here's what i have:
mxl 603s condenser mic (to phantom power)
Neewer 1-Channel 48V Phantom Power Supply
VAlinks USB Male to 3PIN XLR Female Mic Microphone Converter Cable (from phantom power into usb on surfacepro)

i also use a logicpro webcam that the software allows me to choose the usb mic from the mic drop down list.

does this setup sound like it should work? i've tried various mic placement locations all with the same result...banjo (especially on the trebles)

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Stephen Kenyon
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Re: Help needed with my setup

Postby Stephen Kenyon » Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:05 am

Have you fixed for certain that the webcam mic is disabled, e.g. stick something over it to mask it altogether or some other thing.

More information might also be helpful re the result you are getting - from the description 'banjo' I'd assume very short sustain and metallic tone. Maybe post a clip of audio.

Is is possible something in the software you are recording into (which you don't mention!) is set to something, is there a plugin running for example?
Simon Ambridge Series 40 (2005)
Trevor Semple Series 88 (1992)
Louis Panormo (1838)
Alexander Batov Baroque Guitar (2013)

fraim
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Joined: Sun Dec 18, 2016 2:22 pm
Location: Dallas, TX

Re: Help needed with my setup

Postby fraim » Wed Feb 08, 2017 1:15 am

steve kenyon "(which you don't mention!)"
sure i did..."i also use a logicpro webcam that the software allows me to choose the usb mic from the mic drop down list."
the software of the logicpro controls the recording session...not anything else.
& you're correct about the metallic sound...just like you'd expect when listening to a few individual banjo notes.

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Stephen Kenyon
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Re: Help needed with my setup

Postby Stephen Kenyon » Wed Feb 08, 2017 10:31 am

Oh so Logic Pro is the software, sorry was assuming it was a webcam make :oops: but no that can't be right because a Surfacepro is a Windows machine, which won't run Logic software, because its Apple only. So please clarify, its important :D Is it actually a Logictech Pro webcam?

Also, have you got somebody with good ears to audition your guitar sound when playing (near your mic position) and then the recorded result that you think sounds like a banjo, and confirm that they are different? Has to be asked, because the tone we hear when playing is not that which the guitar puts forth and it can be a surprise when we hear the tone from in front of the instrument.
Simon Ambridge Series 40 (2005)
Trevor Semple Series 88 (1992)
Louis Panormo (1838)
Alexander Batov Baroque Guitar (2013)

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Blondie
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Location: Devon, UK

Re: Help needed with my setup

Postby Blondie » Wed Feb 08, 2017 10:48 am

Stephen Kenyon wrote:Oh so Logic Pro is the software, sorry was assuming it was a webcam make :oops: but no that can't be right because a Surfacepro is a Windows machine, which won't run Logic software, because its Apple only. So please clarify, its important :D Is it actually a Logictech Pro webcam?


Hmm.... yes, what's a 'logicpro webcam'? Logic pro is a Apple DAW, not a webcam.

fraim
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Location: Dallas, TX

Re: Help needed with my setup

Postby fraim » Wed Feb 08, 2017 12:51 pm

doh! logictech...not logicpro! apologies that i got you so stumped!
correct about the sound...my recorded voice sounds so different then the ones i hear in my head :?

but i think i might have found a solution. i saw a youtube where a guy was reviewing a setup like mine. his results showed that the recording had too much gain (?) even with windows mic at the lowest setting, with the xls -> usb connection. then he showed an xls -> 3.5mm connection & the sound was correct. i ordered one & will give it a go.
here's the YouTube link: https://youtu.be/BabagS9Ix8c

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Blondie
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Re: Help needed with my setup

Postby Blondie » Wed Feb 08, 2017 1:16 pm

fraim wrote:doh! logictech...not logicpro! apologies that i got you so stumped!
correct about the sound...my recorded voice sounds so different then the ones i hear in my head :?

but i think i might have found a solution. i saw a youtube where a guy was reviewing a setup like mine. his results showed that the recording had too much gain (?) even with windows mic at the lowest setting, with the xls -> usb connection. then he showed an xls -> 3.5mm connection & the sound was correct. i ordered one & will give it a go.


Well for starters you will get much better quality audio if you had gone for a proper audio interface rather than doing this piecemeal by buying a separate phantom power supply, then a cable to convert XLR to USB, and now an XLR > 3.5mm. For one thing you would have got a proper preamp, which you still won't have. You will find things very quiet/low levels and noisy (hissy) going straight into the motherboard/onboard audio line in.

What software are you actually using to record the audio at the moment? Your settings here may need looking at too. If you are making video, and just using the Logitech software for example, what have you got your audio resolution set at? (Preferences/quick capture/audio recording quality)

Salvador
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Re: Help needed with my setup

Postby Salvador » Wed Feb 08, 2017 2:14 pm

Try recording the audio with Audacity because Logitech may have some settings like noise reduction that may ruin the recording, but this is just my guess.

fraim
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Location: Dallas, TX

Re: Help needed with my setup

Postby fraim » Wed Feb 08, 2017 2:39 pm

thanks for your reply blondie!

i'm a classical guitar player but am pretty ignorant in recording myself. i'm not looking for any pro quality for distribution, for example. rather i'm just trying to get an honest self feedback of tone, lh & rh positioning, posture, etc., so that's all i'm trying to achieve. maybe you were thinking of a pro quality recording. i'm an intermediate/advanced player an am just looking at new ways i can improve.
i'll take a look at those settings you mentioned. do you have any recommendations on recording software?

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Blondie
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Re: Help needed with my setup

Postby Blondie » Wed Feb 08, 2017 4:01 pm

fraim wrote:thanks for your reply blondie!
i'm a classical guitar player but am pretty ignorant in recording myself. i'm not looking for any pro quality for distribution, for example. rather i'm just trying to get an honest self feedback of tone, lh & rh positioning, posture, etc., so that's all i'm trying to achieve. maybe you were thinking of a pro quality recording. i'm an intermediate/advanced player an am just looking at new ways i can improve.
i'll take a look at those settings you mentioned. do you have any recommendations on recording software?


OK I get that you don't need high level equipment but you are going about this the wrong way. A dedicated USB microphone (Samson, Subzero) would be the simplest option for what you want to do - it would be easy to use, just plug in and record and cheaper than what you have already spent on all your gear so far (plus you are still not there yet..). This is not the same as buying a standard condenser mic, and a cable that goes from XLR to USB (USB mics have built in soundcards).

However, assuming you want to make the best use of your mxl mic and not start over, the usual way to go is via an audio interface, its difficult to do it any other way as you are discovering. You could go via the mic input on your PC soundcard, in which case you need to be careful with your mic input recording levels to avoid distortion. Going via the line in without a preamp will not work.

I agree that Audacity would be a great option for you, its free, easy to use, does all you want and more.

fraim
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Dec 18, 2016 2:22 pm
Location: Dallas, TX

Re: Help needed with my setup

Postby fraim » Wed Feb 08, 2017 6:19 pm

ok...very well explained! thanks very much for your help! i'll take a look at audio interfaces & download audacity. if i'm still stuck get ready for more questions :D


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