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midi noise and soundboard

Discussion in 'Recording' started by Fer, Apr 4, 2004.

  1. Fer

    Fer Guest

    Hello guys! I´m from Argentina and thrilled to be here for the first time. I´ve got a question regarding some noise I get when I connect an electrical piano via MIDI to a synthesiser which in turn is connected to the computer so as to record all intruments from it. I use the piano in order to have the full range of 88 notes and be able to play piano parts, but the thing is that whenever I plug it in the IN port of a KORG synthesiser, I get a slight noise. Is it due to the soundboard? (I must admit, it´s an onboard one, the original that came with the computer). I´ve been told that the quality of the sound will improve if I aquire a better one such as Turtle Beach.
    Any help, I´ll appreciate.

    See you
  2. noit

    noit Guest

    No sound or power should be running through a MIDI cable, but it seems like maybe you have a grounding problem. Is it a steady hum or a crackling static?
  3. Fer

    Fer Guest

    Hi noit, thank you for your reply. I´d say it´s a mixture: a steady crackling, yet high-pitched (though barely audible) sound. it´s not that pervasive, but it surely shows up in the recording of piano tracks. it always try suppressing it in the compression, but, as you can see, I´m just starting with this fascinating world of recording, and I´ve yet to learn tons of things.

  4. noit

    noit Guest

    Compression will make the hum louder during quiter passages. A gate would be more helpful. But, you should be able to get rid of the noise all together. I would juggle around your equipment to isolate the troubled unit.

    My first guess was a grounding problem, but maybe somehting in the chain is accidentally sending a note on message.

    What do you mean by "Electric piano"?
  5. Fer

    Fer Guest

    I´m currently using a GEM electrical piano (88 notes, pedals, touch sensitivity and so on...). as I said, I use it whenever I have to play piano parts that otherwise would be limited if I just use the 60 something keys of the synthesiser. I once tried to find out, as you said, the source of the noise, and it happened to be that every time I plugged the MIDI cable that comes from the out port of the electrical piano, whether it was turned on (the piano) or not, the noise appeared when I armed the track for recording. Do you think it could be suppressed with a better soundboard? or is it the synthesiser?

    PS: why would the compression make the hum louder?

    thanks a lot
  6. noit

    noit Guest

    I would bet on a problem with the GEM. Either a grounding issue or an internal voltage problem resulting in a note on message.

    My thought about the note on message possibility is that it thinks your always holding down a key. If I'm right the sound should change slightly when you choose a different sound. Try putting it on a drum sound and it might go away all together.

    I have an ARP Quartet that sometimes plays a low C# and a high F#, both very faintly.
  7. noit

    noit Guest

    Another idea that just came to me is if it's a stuck note on message you should be able to see the note if you record the MIDI messages.

    About compression. Compression lowers the OUT volume as the original IN volume increases.

    Fro example
    A sound at 80% will be lowered 60%
    A sound at 55% will be lowered 50%

    The result is the sound gets squashed down and the louder parts are closer to the volume as the quiter parts. Naturally after squashing down the volume you would turn up the over all volume to a listening level. While doing this you raise the volume on all of the quiter parts as well. thus raising the volume of your hum.
  8. Fer

    Fer Guest

    thanks Noit. i´m still having some doubts about the GEM, since I tried connecting the Midi cable to the synthesiser having the Electrical Piano unplugged, so as to see if the problem originated in the synthesiser, and appears to be so. do you think a better soundboard could reduce this?
  9. noit

    noit Guest

    It has the noise if just the korg is plugged in? I didn't realize that.

    Now that I know the sound is there even without the gem, I know the issue. The sound card is picking up interference inside of your pc. I would suggest moving the card to a slot as far from everything else as possible. Especially the video card and hard drives. if that doesn't lower the static enough then you will want to get a new card.

    Get one that houses the AD/DA converters in a breakout box and you wont have this problem at all.
  10. Fer

    Fer Guest

    sorry, noit
    what is AD-DA? I´m quite sure it has something to do with analog or digital sounds. is that the case? how should I ask for that thing about the breakoutbox? is that somenthing featured in the specifications of the card?
    thanks a lot
  11. noit

    noit Guest

    The "analog to digital" and "Digital to Analog" converters do just that. They convert back and forth between data bits and audible sound. the farther they are from alien electrical components of any kind the better.

    By break out box, I meant that there is a card that goes into the computer with a cable that extends to an external box with all the goods there in. Some cards that have external input/output boxes still house the converters on the card, so look out for these. if the goods are external it will most likely say in the specs.

    By the way, do not under any circumstances by a Gadget Labs. It is bad magic...

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