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Interface

Discussion in 'Recording' started by Smashh, Sep 7, 2014.

  1. Smashh

    Smashh Active Member

    Hi guys ,

    Ive got a digi 002 rack and Im thinking, should I buy a ribbon mic or get a new interface .
    The problem is it would have to be around the 800 dollar mark.
    Is it worth looking at second hand stuff on ebay ?
    I do need 8 inputs .

    Is getting a newer interface gonna make a better quality sound and if so what should I be
    looking at buying in that price range if there is any ?
     
  2. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    For some, your current DAW and interface is just perfect so it depends on what you are expecting? Why do you need to upgrade? If you are doing demo's, and not VSTi, who cares, make music and don't get all caught up in improving because it is what it is. Its big bucks to get better, worth spending imho. Actually, I'd get a StudioLive 16.4.2 over what you have any day of the week. Superior is all regards.

    If you are wanting pro perhaps, and have clients that expect better, that's a different game all together so, I would without hesitation say...

    DUMP the digi 002. That = accumulative aliasing smear ... No matter what mic you get, it will always sound small and digital. But, your Avid formula is also subjective to all that goes with that turn key program so I'm the broken record saying, you can't fix what isn't meant to be fixed. Its a dated can of worms heading to the dump that no one wants anymore.

    If it were me though, I'd buy a second hand StudioLive or a second hand RME. Mass is on the Orion32 bandwagon so it's a great opportunity to grab onto many options better than what you have now.

    The big question is, what are you recording?
    Are you doing a bit of both, VSTi, Midi and real music or all real? If you are all real, a simple 8 channel and avoiding little plug-in use is plenty to get a pro sound. If you are using a lot of plug-ins and mashing it all up with a bit of everything, you need better clocking and its a never ending battle of increasing DSP while hoping for less accumulative transient smear.
     
  3. Smashh

    Smashh Active Member

    I dont have any clients Chris , but I do want to try and do the best i can with what we record at home.
    Also hardly any midi , Only live , if the there is midi it would be just a splash over live stuff.
    I see on ebay studio live 16 for 1200 , Do they have an 8 channel?
     
  4. pcrecord

    pcrecord Don't you want the best recording like I do ? Well-Known Member

    An audio interface or a ribbon mic ??? It's like saying, do I buy plates or forks... ;)

    First, I'm not sure the 002 has enough power for a ribbon (unless it's an active ribbon)
    Second, you may have the best instrument and perfect mics for the job, the preamps and converters of the 002 will always limit the quality.

    One thing you could do is get a good preamp with a converter option(digital out) like the Focusrite ISA One. You could have ONE good preamp that will bypass the 002's by entering it in digital and get a ribbon later. ( ISA preamps have 80db of clean power so it's a good choice for ribbon mics).

    But if you need multi-track quality, I'd change the 002 right away.
    As Chris says, the studiolive consoles are a good, RME, Orion, or save up for a UA Apollo.
    Or get a ZED-r16, it's a great foundation for a studio. Nice preamps and converters, plus control some feature of your DAW and also summing capacity..

    There's tones of better units than the 002.(y)
     
  5. Smashh

    Smashh Active Member

    Yes I think changing the interface will be the best option.
    (y)
     
  6. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    dvdhawk will confirm but comparing the 002 to this, I'm certain you will be thrilled.

    There are two 16 channel studiolives
    Get the 16.4.2
    It's 16 channels io, not 8!
    If you are doing mostly live tracking, this is better than the 002 for you. Dave, what do you think?
    Its sample rate limits at 48k but you really are good enough with it.

    Anything you get into at that price point won't be huge change for you, why I suggest this as it will be a much better step over investing in a better mic or converter still stuck with digi crud

    If there is a local gc around, it would be good to try it for a week but it will sell if you don't like it

    I'd pay no more than $1000 for the console
    You'll get one for that! I sold a 24.4.2 for $1400
     
  7. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    I know people don't want to hear this but the Apollo is not an upgrade because it's full of phase and sounds like glass

    Those are going bye bye real fast
    People are starting to get it and I personally think a new generation of audio is awakening.

    Why do you feel a ribbon is what you need? I'm guessing because you hear harsh and are hoping a ribbon will be smoother?

    It will be smoother but still in the path if digi which is no better. It will still have the smearing and metallic 6k we all hate.
     
  8. pcrecord

    pcrecord Don't you want the best recording like I do ? Well-Known Member

    Oh !! Good to know about the apollo.. Thanks ;)
     
  9. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Lots love it and would disagree so like all digital, it's subjective
     
  10. pcrecord

    pcrecord Don't you want the best recording like I do ? Well-Known Member

    I guess when you have one gear in your studio, you can't say it's bad even if you know it is. Specially not to your customers !! ;)
    I'm learning to recognise what sound's good. Since I haven't tried everything, it's best to rely on good fellow like you, Chris !!
     
  11. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Thanks,

    imho, I'm not trying to be a know it all, rather, just another voice okay to be wrong, questioned or disagreed with. Having the opportunity to mix for people and asking questions on what they use or do helps demystify. Having had quite a bit of gear over the years also helps. Combined, I hope what I share is not hurtful as I know we never like to hear bad things we invest in. Its human nature to support our purchases, I try an not do that here. We all learn from mistakes. There isn't a day I don't think I could have done something different.
    If you notice, I'm on a new finding where there are two worlds of gear that can make big improvements to some, where its useless for others. If we are only tracking, we can get by on very minimal mixing gear and the front end is everything.
    When we are combining vsti, midi, libraries and real, its a whole new world. Converters and that 2 track at a time is one that has been overlooked as pointed out when we are qualifying help and suggestions above here.

    Back to the OP,
    The SL is great but I'd love to have the Zed and so many other consoles above and beyond. Today, DAW's are so clean compared to yesteryear. It used to be the other way around back in my day. Gear made big differences. Bad tape sounds bad. Today, we can get by on a lot less once we get what is messing us up or screwing with the phase. imho, there are way too many options today. Those little things we think we need, accumulate and distract. The Apollo, has way too much of everything and not enough of the one main thing a converter should really be doing, which is, passing audio transparently back and forth true, nothing more. From what I've heard and read, it isn't pro level so why bother. Most DAW's have what it claims to have already, we just don't see it. Its another distraction for those thinking it will help tracking. I don't here it.
     
  12. Smashh

    Smashh Active Member

    can I still use pro tools 11 , as I like my workflow on that DAW.

    I do like the look of the studio live and the price is reachable for me but I wont have the money until the new year so
    Ive started doing research now as I want to buy the right thing for me.
    Also I like the idea of being able to take it gigging and having a few different scenes for styles of song we do.
    The knobs sticking out at the top are a bit worrying.
     
  13. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    If you are gigging, its perfect! Yes, you can still use it with Pro Tools. Watch all the videos posted, there are tons. I've posted a lot here as well so, check in our search. You will love this. I just bought the newer 24.4.2AI version, should be here in a few weeks.. I hated to sell my older SL a while back so hows that for a testimonial. Nothing comes close to this at that price. Great company too.

    Maybe Dave has some leads for you and more advice. You have a few months before purchase stress kicks in, maybe something else will pop up that a member or two may suggest too. Good luck,

    Cheers!
     
  14. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Those knobs are gains, no worries. Look for one with a hard shell case, bonus!

    Do you have FW? (firewire)
     
  15. Smashh

    Smashh Active Member

    Yes I have firewire . thanks for your input Chris , Ill check out more on Studio Live:)
     
  16. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    I wouldn't completely rule out Presonus StudioOne as a potential DAW platform if you are going to get the StudioLive console. It's a perfect integration between the console and the DAW platform (and you'll end up getting the Artist Series version of the DAW program anyway, when you buy the console).

    Other than that, you can stick with PT if you want, I understand the urge to stick with the familiar - although I've recently changed over to Samplitude and wouldn't ever look back at PT or Sonar unless I was forced to, due to a client's insistence...

    The Digi you have is older technology, and was designed more to be somewhat as a proprietary interface for PT, than it was designed to be a good mic preamp.
    Most of the engineers I knew who used one were using it in conjunction with consoles/added preamps, and used it strictly as an I/O, but very few of those people I knew who had one (myself included) still have them, because even when using console or standalone preamps, the Digi always seemed to downgrade the signal.
    The Digi lacks gain, sounds pretty thin, and the converters aren't really considered up to today's specs. Will it work? Sure. But it has a very thin and weak sound in comparison to most of today's pres/I-O's. And speaking of lack of gain, even if you were to pick up a ribbon mic, I'm not sure it would even have enough gain to provide a ribbon mic what it requires - at least not without adding a Cloudlifter or something similar in the chain to boost the gain.

    You'll be much happier with the pres and converters on the Presonus than you will with the Digi that you currently have. As mentioned by Marco, if you felt like you wanted to step up and have other/alternate coloring options available, you could also add a Focusrite ISA (or something similar) to the Presonus, but for your basic day to day recording, that requires robust, clean, transparent pres, the Studio Live would be a major step up from what you have now, short of getting into something really nice, which of course, will cost quite a bit more - and give you far less channels to work with.

    The StudioLive consoles, at least as of this writing, do not offer an 8 channel version. The 16 channel desk is the smallest channel count that they currently make.

    FWIW

    d/
     
  17. pcrecord

    pcrecord Don't you want the best recording like I do ? Well-Known Member

    I checked up the StudioLive consoles and they seems to be amazing units.
    The only thing that's bothering me is that there is no ADAT input or Digital Input. I would find it a bit limiting on the long run if one would consider buying high end outboard preamps in the future. Unless somebody can confirm the line in or insert could lead directly to the converters..
     
  18. Smashh

    Smashh Active Member

    Looks great , can someone tell me whats the advantage of the 16.4.2 over the 16.0.2 ?
     
  19. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    The 16-4 has 4 subgroups, the 16-2 has none - the "2" describes the master/stereo bus.

    Also, you cannot daisy-chain two 16-2's together to obtain more channels, as you can with the 16-4-2's.

    From what I understand, the original 16-4-2 has been discontinued, and the 16-4-2-AI is now the current defacto16 channel desk from Presonus.

    That's not to say that you still can't get the older 16-4-2's - you just can't get them new, unless GC or Sweetwater would happen to have a few left in their inventory...I've seen them going for between $850 - $1200 used on eBay. Personally, I wouldn't spend more than $1000 on a 16-4-2.

    (Dead Link Removed)

    As far as support goes, knowing Presonus, I'm sure that tech support is still readily available for the original 16-4-2, and will likely continue to be available for quite sometime.

    If it were me, I'd save up the cash and get the 16-4-2 AI.

    http://www.presonus.com/products/StudioLive-AI-Series

    IMHO of course.

    d.
     
  20. Smashh

    Smashh Active Member

    Well at the moment , the only thing in my price range will be a used 16.0.2 , which dosent seem so user friendly
    They add hundreds of dollars on here in australia
    but I dont mind as long as the quality of the converter is the same as the 16.4.2.
    I see they have the same pre amps (y)
    Ive been watching u tube demoes
    Having less aux channels is a non issue here,

    Ill keep my fingers crossed and wish for some new thing to come out so the prices come down , which is quite possible
    in these times.
     
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