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Boosting Low Levels

Discussion in 'Recording' started by Tobyadd9, Aug 25, 2010.

  1. Tobyadd9

    Tobyadd9 Guest

    So I am recording from a Yamaha USB Mixing Studio MW10, into both PC and Mac using both Garageband and Cubase LE.

    I can set the levels nice and high on the desk. However, into cubase/garageband the levels are quite low, where yes I can clearly hear the recording is working, but I have to pump my monitoring high and boost the tracks... which limits my mixing power and just makes the process a bit of a nightmare.

    Any ideas? Stones I haven't turned over?

    Cheers guys!
     
  2. jg49

    jg49 Well-Known Member

    What levels are low? The recorded tracks don't have a high enough level? r is this just a playback level problem?
     
  3. Tobyadd9

    Tobyadd9 Guest

    Yeah, the recorded tracks themselves are low level.
     
  4. jg49

    jg49 Well-Known Member

    Well my first thought is that the recorded tracks are probably well with in normal levels, Digital recordings can be pretty much in the middle of the meter and render great recordings.
    In more technical terms you can get great recordings with -16 to -12 peaks in other words the peaks come nowhere near the clipping point. Your issue is most likely in the monitoring area and how loud you believe that you should be mixing at. Most inexperienced engineers want to mix at levels that are higher than more experienced engineers. In Cubase if you make your track length small enough to see both ends and highlight the track or all the tracks at either end you will notice a small triangle in each upper corner, these are your fade handles in the center of the track there will be a tiny square on the upper line if you click on this and drag the mouse upwards it will increase the tracks gain, you can also normalize tracks but you really should read up on the pros and cons of that prior to using this technique. It is best when experimenting with such drastic changes to make certain you have saved an unadulterated copy of your project on another drive or cd or dvd. I really think that it would be good idea to read this thread http://recording.org/digital-audio....estion-about-setting-levels-gain-staging.html
     
  5. Tobyadd9

    Tobyadd9 Guest

    Thanks jg49, I will experiment tomorrow and I've been reading through that thread: interesting stuff if a little complex for me!

    Cheers, will post to say how I get on.

    *ps: so when I've done recordings in the past, it has been that monitoring the sound I have to jack up the volume on my speakers to hear the thing, but then that carries through to the mixdown... so I guess the question is how do I get standard music levels on mixdown, so its not as quiet as it was in cubase/whatever.
     
  6. jg49

    jg49 Well-Known Member

    Well everyone has their own process but it is not unsual to use a compressor/limiter on the master bus to punch up the final mix. Here is a decent free one [DLMURL="link removed Kjaerhus Audio Classic Compressor - Virtual Effect[/DLMURL]. I would not advise using this during the mixing process rather at the end when bouncing to a final. Most music is mixed at whatever level is good for the mix and then sent to a mastering engineer who delivers a final product where the levels of all the different songs/pieces have been brought to similar levels ready for final production.

    What are you using for monitors?
     
  7. soapfloats

    soapfloats Well-Known Member

    I wonder if there is an issue w/ output levels of the interface to the monitors?
    That is, the Yamaha is sending a lower level out to the monitors than what the monitors want to see coming in?
     
  8. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Well-Known Member

    Here is what I want to know? When you are recording your meteors are indicating something. When you are playing back the meter should be representative of the same levels you saw when you were recording. Recording digitally yields the same playback level as the recording level. Monitoring has nothing to do with recording nor playing. It's the monitoring function you may be having problems with? And how in the hell are you recording to both PC & Mac? Not at the same time I would hope? And the problem seems to occur on both platforms. That's called operator error you are experiencing. It ain't the equipment. You don't understand your manuals. Many devices have separate monitor outputs that are different from their line or bus outputs. These monitor outputs are generally variable on what we call a " Volume Control" or, potentiometer. The line level and/or bus outputs also have level controls somewhere. Monitoring levels are similar in nature to recording levels. You have some kind of monitoring issue it is louder when you're recording and quieter when you play back. But then it also sounds like you may not have things patched in properly? More operator error. And it's not easy getting your patching correct if you don't quite know the differences of the different output levels that so many companies utilize. Everybody has a different output level within certain parameters. There is the professional parameters there is the enthusiast parameters and there are the common everyday for every way parameters. In some nominal output levels you might be looking at 1.25 V or .775 V or .3 V? And the V is volts. This can be across a 600 ohm terminated load in professional equipment or 10,000-20,000-50,000 ohm input load on everything other than professional equipment. This can all have a huge factor in monitoring levels. But this sounds like you just don't have something set properly on your Yamaha gizmo? Since I don't play with toys and am too lazy to google it, somebody else here will probably provide you with better input? LOL I said input. Notice I didn't say output?

    In the Out Stairway
    Mx. Remy Ann David
     

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