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Anyone willing to tutor an idiot? I'll pay.

Discussion in 'Recording' started by ArvelJoffi, Sep 7, 2007.

  1. ArvelJoffi

    ArvelJoffi Guest

    I'm actually a very intelligent person, but this whole DAW thing is just kicking my butt. I'm having a ton of problems just getting a simple, functional DAW going, and it's driving me nuts. When I'm trying to solve a problem, every instruction manual I read, or post I can find on the internet refers to something I've never heard of, or to adjusting a setting on something I can't adjust the settings on because that's the other problem I'm having.

    I've been screwing around with this sort of thing forever, and I periodically give up and just go back to playing my guitar, and recording myself on Audacity with a cheap mic with an 1/8" plug into my laptop.

    My basic problems are this:

    - Cubase LE is driving me out of my freakin' mind. The "Getting Started" manual is 170 pages long, the actual manual is Biblical. I go cross-eyed trying to read that much tech talk. (I prefer things like Adobe Premiere video editing software. You look at it, it makes sense, you make movies.)

    - My Alesis MultiMix8 mixer never seems to work the same way twice.

    - I can record and export midi just fine in LE, but, as the mixer is acting weird, I can't get any actual audio.

    - I just purchased the Behringer BCF2000, which I just want to use a mixer. It has the most appalling instructions I've ever seen. I can't use it at all.

    I'm shooting for a simple set up: Alesis mixer for audio recording, M-Audio 88ES as a midi controller, BCF2000 for mixing. Nothing works.

    I'd like to pay someone to tutor me, and help me get this crap working once and for all. I'm a damned good musician, and I'm tired of no one but me and my girlfriend knowing this! I'm not a tech head. If someone is patient enough to type, "Click on this, then on that, then plug that into there," it will suit me perfectly. I don't know how much yet. I'm not made of money, but hopefully we can figure something that will be worthwhile.

    If you're interested, then I'll give you all the specs on my computer and my gear (that I know how to give). I probably should have said that I have a PC running XP at the beginning of the post; I know that many of you Mac elitists are angry with me now that you've read a whole post for nothing. :)

    Thanks,

    Michael
     
  2. Slice

    Slice Guest

    Having your computer specs and the way you connected everything could help a lot...
    One thing I can't understand is why you got a second mixer, even though you can do it in Cubase LE... but that's your choice.

    For the MIDI, are you sure you assigned a sound to it?
    And can you give a list of the things you can do in Cubase LE as of now? and the things you want to do but can't do?

    Oh, and forget the money, we're glad to help you...
     
  3. Space

    Space Well-Known Member

    ...how much money were we talking about?








    Brien
     
  4. ArvelJoffi

    ArvelJoffi Guest

    The first mixer, the Alesis, is for recording. The second, the Behringer, is for mixdown. Both are USB. I know that you can mix in LE, as you can in most audio software, but I just like the tactile feel of an actual mixer. I'm not mouse kind of guy.

    The midi is working fine. I can assign sounds and export them, change, whatever. I am noticing that when I import a .wav file into LE, I can hear it, but I don't see anything.

    First off, I need to get the damned Alesis MultiMix8 working correctly, so that when I plug my keyboard, mic, or whatever into it, I get audio in Cubase. I can run out of the L and R 1/4" mains and send it into the computer's 1/8" line-in, but I'd rather use the USB to cut down on the noise.

    I need to know how to see the audio I'm hearing when I import a .wav or .mp3 into LE. This just seems kind of weird to me. I've imported sound into Audacity, n-Track, Adobe Premiere, and a ton of demos of other audio software - they always just show up in the track, but I don't see anything in LE.

    I'll worry about the Behringer mixer when I can get some damned audio into Cubase to mix down in first place.

    That is very nice of you; I'm just afraid that I'll ask so many noob questions that people will stop answering them before too long.

    I'm on my crappy little laptop right now, but I'll get a list of the hardware on my desktop tonight or tomorrow.

    Thanks again!

    Michael
     
  5. Slice

    Slice Guest

    First get the correct input source when you open a Cubase LE track, then to hear what it is recording, click on the record button and the monitor button, if you see the bar on the right moving when you play a sound it's good.
    Once you've mastered that, apply the same for the other mixer, and it should work fine too, but switch of the monitor and record buttons when you playback the track.

    For the money part, come on, who wouldn't want to help, everybody's been there, even me like a week ago, but I'm more a computer type of guy than a mixer type.

    Continue posting if you still have some trouble...
     
  6. IIRs

    IIRs Well-Known Member

    1. Have you selected the correct drivers in Cubase? I assume you have installed the drivers for the Alesis (preferably the latest ones from their website rather than the ones on the included setup disc).. next step is to tell Cubase to use those rather than the basic windows drivers. (I can 't be more specific as I haven't used Cubase since it turned into SX. Look for an audio settings page, and choose the option that mentions "Alesis" and "ASIO" instead of the "MME" or "DirectX" drivers that are probably selected currently.)

    2. You do realise the BCF2000 and BCR200 are not mixers, right? They are merely control surfaces, ie: they provide tactile knobs and faders with which to control the software mixer in Cubase (or whatever DAW you choose to use) but they don't deal with audio signals at all, just control signals.

    3. I'm guessing you are using Cubase LE because it was included with the Alesis...? Perhaps you have no wish to spend any more money in this area, but you should know that Cubase is not the most intuitive recording software available. I would hand that award to Tracktion:
    http://www.mackie.com/products/tracktion3/
    Your mileage may vary.
    :wink:
     
  7. pollysix

    pollysix Guest

    I'm not sure what kind of soundcard you have--i.e. what kinds of input options you have... but either way you'll need to make sure things are set up properly in Cubase LE to receive sound.

    To make it really clear cut, start with plugging an instrument or mic into input 1 on your sound card. Then go through each of the following settings in Cubase and make sure they're set to receive input on channel 1.
    I know with my current set up (also Cubase LE on XP) I often need to fiddle around with the settings under the "Devices" menu. Look through "FL Studio", "VST Inputs" to make sure you have the right channels selected. Then go to "Device Setup" and under that "VST System link" and make sure that's on "Mic/Instrin 1+2 left". And then, as Slice said above, make sure you've got the record and monitor buttons selected on your track---just pick track 1 in this case to make things simple.

    Another obvious but pertinent thing is to make sure that when you're opening a new project you've selected a template that isn't just all midi tracks. I'd say go for "default" which will give you a mixture of Audio and MIDI tracks.

    I hope this helps.

    And just one other word... I've got to be honest with you and say that maybe you should consider that you might have barked up the wrong tree with Cubase and multiple mixers/control surfaces, etc. It's confusing these days as a musician---recording technology is relatively cheap so it's tempting to just jump right in to it as a way of recording your own music. But as a musician/sound geek I've got to say that it's not always the best path.

    Basically before dealing with these tech issues I'd say: What do you want the technology to do for you? Are you using it to write music? Is it to make a demo for yourself? Or are you planning to record a whole album on your own? These questions should drive your decisions. From my own experience and form that of friends, getting into a whole studio setup is not the best way to bang out songs. Often your songwriting impulse just hits a brick wall when the inevitable tech problems arise and all you end up with is frustration.

    Sound recording in terms of actually making something--even just a demo---requires a lot of time, learning, desire to learn and PATIENCE. I get frustrated all the time with my studio, but in the end I don't really mind because I have a very strong, (obsessive) interest in learning more and more about sound recording. From the sounds of it the whole tech/sound recording aspect of it is not your bag to begin with. It sounds like you might be better off with either a really straightforward set up (maybe even a ministudio) for songwriting, or if it's for a demo or album, just finding a reasonably-priced studio to do it for you. Cubase is awesome, but at a certain point, for some people it might be the equivalent of learning to fly a plane just to take a trip to Hawaii. It's not easy to be staring at a huge dashboard of controls if you're not even sure what you should be looking for (not to mention if you don't really have the desire to be a pilot).

    Anyway, I hope it wasn't too presumptuous of me to write that, I'm saying it partly off the heels of a conversation with my drummer brother who's been having serious tech problems with his home studio setup and as he put it : "Would rather just bang on cardboard than deal with trying to troubleshoot it". :wink:

    Good luck.
     

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