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Re: recording on computers

Posted: Fri Mar 28, 2014 12:43
by islandhopper
I've just discovered the joy of using VST instruments. Anyone have any recommendations?

Interested in anything fun but probably synths mostly. Free is a plus as is anything with an arpeggiator!

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Fri Mar 28, 2014 13:01
by roundbitsofplastic
tonieee wrote: ardour is probably the best but is quite complicated. Audacity is a lot simpler but not ideal for multi track recording. I don't know I'd there's anything in between.
Thanks, Tonieee! I'll see if I cna d/l Audacity this weekend. I do not need more ompliacted things.

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Fri Mar 28, 2014 14:29
by tonieee
roundbitsofplastic wrote:
tonieee wrote: ardour is probably the best but is quite complicated. Audacity is a lot simpler but not ideal for multi track recording. I don't know I'd there's anything in between.
Thanks, Tonieee! I'll see if I cna d/l Audacity this weekend. I do not need more ompliacted things.
It depends what you're doing. Audacity will be okay for simple stuff but if you're wanting to do multi track recording and mixing it might end up being harder. I probably wouldn't recommend using Ardour unless you're already familiar with DAW software or are interested in learning. I don't know if there is something like Garage Band for Linux that would fill the gap between high end DAW and simple sound file recorder/editor.

BTW audacity (and ardour too) should be in Ubuntu's repository so you shouldn't need to download and install it manually. Apologies if that's what you meant.

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Fri Mar 28, 2014 14:31
by roundbitsofplastic
tonieee wrote:
BTW audacity (and ardour too) should be in Ubuntu's repository so you shouldn't need to download and install it manually. Apologies if that's what you meant.
I still really, really don't understand Linux. No, I did not know that Audacity was in there. Thanks!

I'm excited to start the ROCK.

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Fri Mar 28, 2014 15:57
by tonieee
roundbitsofplastic wrote:
tonieee wrote:
BTW audacity (and ardour too) should be in Ubuntu's repository so you shouldn't need to download and install it manually. Apologies if that's what you meant.
I still really, really don't understand Linux. No, I did not know that Audacity was in there. Thanks!

I'm excited to start the ROCK.
In Ubuntu (and most decent Linuxes) most software you'll want to use will be in the repository already so you'll be able to instal it with a few clicks of buttons from the package manager software (synaptic I think? I use the command line myself and Debian rather than Ubuntu) and in some cases they will have changed the configuration to work better with Ubuntu plus you'll get any security updates. So you're much better installing stuff from the repository than manually unless you have a really good reason not to.

I've had a look on the internet and there's another program which I'd forgotten about called Jokosher which might be better than Audacity and will be a lot simpler than Ardour. I've never used it myself but it's supposed to be alright. It should be in Ubuntu's repository as well.

Also you may want to install some LADSPA plugins for reverb, EQ etc. All three of the programs I mentioned use them as they're the standard Linux audio effects (like VST effects on windows). There should be a package called ladspa-plugins or something like that which will install all the basic ones you're likely to need. Once installed they should be just available to use from within whichever program you decide to go with.

Have fun rocking!

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Fri Mar 28, 2014 16:08
by roundbitsofplastic
Lordy. living in the future is complicated.

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Fri Mar 28, 2014 17:43
by tonieee
roundbitsofplastic wrote:Lordy. living in the future is complicated.
I may have made out sound more complicated than it is. Installing applications from the repository on Ubuntu is a breeze.

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Fri May 01, 2015 12:37
by humblebee
Ggggggnnnnuuuuuaaauuaaarghhhh.

I've got a nice condenser mic for home recording but it needs phantom power. The ooojummy-wotsit-recording box that goes into my computer (a Lexicon Lambda) is supposed to provide phantom power. There's even a button to turn it on and a little light that says yes, doing that. Does it provide enough phantom power to make the nice condenser mic work? Does it heck as like.

If I put the mic through this little 4-track mixer I've got, that gives it enough power. But then when I run the mixer output into the ooojummy-wotsit-recording box, the recording comes out sounding KZZHZZHZHZHZKZHZKHHHHHZHZHZH like just very loud white noise. Bring the levels down and it doesn't seem to make any difference.

I could just use my SM58 instead of the nice condenser mic but that'll lose a lot of the richness of the guitar.

Any thoughts, Anorak? I know, it feels like I've basically been asking the same question for ten years!

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Fri May 01, 2015 13:21
by tonieee
Is it that the mixer is producing line level output and your computer audio interface is expecting mic level? Does your computer box have separate line and mic level inputs? Or a switch to change the input between line and mic? Or there could be a software switch in its mixer in the computer? Also have you tried taking the mixer's output to a different source to see whether the fault is at the computer end or mixer end?

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Fri May 01, 2015 13:49
by humblebee
tonieee wrote:Is it that the mixer is producing line level output and your computer audio interface is expecting mic level?
The mixer is running into the line in sockets on the audio interface thing. I don't know what the output level is though. I've tried it from different outputs off the mixer and turning it up and down and it doesn't seem to make any difference.
Does your computer box have separate line and mic level inputs? Or a switch to change the input between line and mic?
Yes! The first one.
Or there could be a software switch in its mixer in the computer?
I'm not using software specifically for the audio interface - my recording software (Tracktion) recognises it, so it's going straight into that.
Also have you tried taking the mixer's output to a different source to see whether the fault is at the computer end or mixer end?
No!

I'm now trying it without the mixer and just the SM58, just so the day isn't completely wasted, and it sounds crap and it's only going on one side of the stereo mix and the other side is completely empty. I don't really understand stereo and mono and why you need different leads and things. Maybe I need to start saying there are things in the world that I JUST CAN'T DO and stop wasting my life trying. So I should just give up really. But I've done this before and... OK, 'Everything I Do is Gonna be Sparkly' kind of made Radio 1 explode, but 'Everything's Dead Pretty When it Snows' sounds quite nice without even being mastered so why can't I do that again. Gah.

Recording on your own is a real drag but I actually quite like the mixing part, once the recording is done. Which it isn't.

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Fri May 01, 2015 15:00
by tonieee
humblebee wrote:The mixer is running into the line in sockets on the audio interface thing. I don't know what the output level is though. I've tried it from different outputs off the mixer and turning it up and down and it doesn't seem to make any difference.
The output from the mixer is almost definitely line level so that should be correct.
humblebee wrote:it's only going on one side of the stereo mix and the other side is completely empty. I don't really understand stereo and mono and why you need different leads and things.
That'll be because your microphone only outputs a mono signal. There should be something in your recording software to tell it that is it's coming from a mono source.
humblebee wrote:
Also have you tried taking the mixer's output to a different source to see whether the fault is at the computer end or mixer end?
No!
Try putting your mixer to a hifi or other sound amplification device and/our listening to the mixer's output with headphones.

Have you tried the SM58 through the mixer? That'll show whether your fancy mic is the source of the problems - I've never used a fancy mic with phantom power and the like so I don't know what the kind of issues could be if it is that.

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Fri May 01, 2015 16:40
by tonieee
tonieee wrote:
humblebee wrote:it's only going on one side of the stereo mix and the other side is completely empty. I don't really understand stereo and mono and why you need different leads and things.
That'll be because your microphone only outputs a mono signal. There should be something in your recording software to tell it that is it's coming from a mono source.
Oh and also if you've already made a recording that you'd like to keep, you should be able to convert it to mono. There may be a way in the the recording software to split a stereo track into two mono tracks and then just ditch the silent part. If not you could export the audio, import it into Audacity, convert it to mono there and then re-import it.

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Sat May 02, 2015 17:11
by humblebee
Thanks for all that, tonieee. I might try again at some point. I hope I can get it working again cos I want to record my next solo album at home.

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Sun Nov 01, 2015 15:56
by humblebee
Hello you lot. I'm recording at home, using what is surely a stereo mic, with the switch on tonieee's USB sound box card/pre-amp type thing set to stereo, and yet the recordings come out so they're only in one ear. Any possible explanations please? I wonder if I'm using a mono lead. Is there such a thing as a mono lead? And is there a way of making mono sound files into stereo ones?

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Sun Nov 01, 2015 20:20
by This Is Helena
humblebee wrote:Hello you lot. I'm recording at home, using what is surely a stereo mic, with the switch on tonieee's USB sound box card/pre-amp type thing set to stereo, and yet the recordings come out so they're only in one ear. Any possible explanations please? I wonder if I'm using a mono lead. Is there such a thing as a mono lead? And is there a way of making mono sound files into stereo ones?
Most leads (and mics) are mono. Are your speakers/headphones working properly? Have you got your mixer channel panned to the centre? Generally, if you split a mono track into a stereo track you just end up with mono but on two channels. You can then pan and add effects and what not to make it sort of stereo. Are you recording all parts on one track at once or are you multitracking? If you're multitracking then you can do a stereo mix by panning at mix down. What equipment are you using? Apologies if you already know all this stuff.

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Sun Nov 01, 2015 21:16
by tonieee
I didn't know my recording interface had a stereo switch but I'm pretty sure all the inputs are mono. Are you sure the microphone is stereo? If so you'll need to make sure the lead is stereo and then check that the sound card can handle a stereo input - are the instructions with it? How I'd of thought it would work is that you'd have the stereo mike with twin plugs going into channel one and two and then tell your recording software to record a stereo track from channels one and two. That's how the recording software I use (Ardour) works when you create a new track and specify whether you want a mono or stereo track. I have messed around with recording in stereo before using two microphones and that's how I did it.

You definitely can't change a mono track into a stereo track as it only has the single channel in it. A stereo track is two mono tracks in one file. It sounds like you recording a stereo track with one channel containing a recording and the other as blank (because there's nothing plugged into channel two of the sound card probably).

Re: recording on computers

Posted: Thu Nov 05, 2015 13:16
by humblebee
You are brilliant, you lot, you know. Thanks. I'll have a play around.