Mixing problem

Discussion in 'Tracking / Mixing / Editing' started by Unregistered, Mar 8, 2011.

  1. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    I'm making the last tweeks to my new home studio and have come across a problem.

    For rehearsal and playback of drum machine and recorder, I run 1st through a small 4 channel mixer and then into an amp driving a pair of studio monitors and headphones.

    Is it my imagination but when I plug a guitar, directly or via an effects pedal board into the mixer, there seems to be a loss in the sound frequency/dynamics. Its as though by turning up one channel say, into which the drum machine is running, it's stealing a little something away from the other channels. The mixer has it's own power supply (12v).

    Would a pre-amp into the mixer help or just cause more noise and a fire?

    Thank you for any help and advice

  2. mdb

    mdb Active Member

    What mixer are you using? You don't have the drum machine and the guitar plugged into the same channel at the same time do you (one in mic in and one in instrument in)? Do you have a photo of how you're connected to the mixer? Are you direct into inst. in or into the mic in using a DI? Is the DI passive or active and is the +48v phantom power engaged (for passive DIs only)?

    Need more info.
  3. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    Oh er erm....

    Hang on a minute, DI? 48v?

    No it's a simple 4 input and 1 output mixer. Drum machine, recorder and guitar have one channel each, which leaves a spare input should I need it for something in the future. It's just a cheap thing so I can monitor stuff or rehearse late at night. Drum machine and recorder via phono plugs and guitar via 1\4" jack. The mixer gives the choice of both phono and 1\4" inputs and yes, I have tried both with no better or worse result.

    Simply put: Source to mixer (ART) to amp (50w Creek) to speakers (100w ProSound)

  4. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    Is it the ART PowerMix III you are using?

    If you can hear a difference between your active pedal feeding the amp directly and putting it through the mixer, you may just have to accept the fact that low-cost mixers have drawbacks such as limited sound quality and interaction between channels. Using the pedal to buffer the guitar pickup takes out the effect of mixer/amp input impedance on the guitar tone.
  5. jkchuma

    jkchuma Active Member

    If those 1/4" inputs are not specifically for instrument signals that could be the cause. Part of the question here is are those 1/4" inputs Hi-Z or Lo-Z? It's not such a big deal sending Lo-Z signals into Hi-Z inputs but Hi-Z signals into Lo-Z inputs isn't so great.

    Also, it might be a low quality mixer like Boswell stated. Is it possible to take a picture of the inputs and your routing as you were asked earlier?
  6. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    I think he's gone, Josh. Three weeks is a long time for someone in a hurry.
  7. jkchuma

    jkchuma Active Member

    Whoops. I should have looked at the dates.
  8. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    Thanks Guys,

    Reading your opinions helped me decide that indeed, I needed a better quality mixer.

    After much looking I managed to get hold of a second hand 5 channel mixer amp cheaply and it certainly did the trick. Everything is so much better.

    Once the funds are available I will get myself something permanent. Any suggestions/recommendations appreciated.


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