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Newbie questions

Discussion in 'Recording' started by Cyrix, Nov 10, 2006.

  1. Cyrix

    Cyrix Guest

    1.Do I need a soundcard?I only need the headphone out and line in connections.The mother board I plan to buy has a 24/44.1 audio chipset.

    2.Do 32 or 64 bit DAW software have any effect on sound quality?Whats the advantage?

    3.RAM what are the real world advatages of DDR400 VS DDR2 800mhz?
     
  2. Reggie

    Reggie Well-Known Member

    1. If the mother board has the input/output connections that you require, then no you don't HAVE to have a separate soundcard. Many things will be easier for you when recording if you do get a recording interface/soundcard of some kind...

    2. Not near as much effect as mics, preamps, rooms, etc. Not really worth worrying yourself about too much as far as sound quality. More important to worry about the nuts and bolts basics of recording good sound.

    3. I can think of no advantage that DDR400 would have over DDR2 800.


    It is fun to think that you can buy good sound by buying the latest greatest computer; but as far as audio recording goes, it is almost the least important part with regards to sound quality.
     
  3. Cyrix

    Cyrix Guest

    Thanks for the post.Based on the research that Ive done I only really need to use the motherboards sound chips since it has HDA 24/44.1 recording capabilities and the requred inputs needed.I am building a basic setup just for home recording use.Nothing fancy.

    Guitar,Bass & vocals all run thru the same 24/44.1 effects processor and drums and loops will be on the software.

    I plan to use Cubase SE3 so I really need advise on what type of computer compontents I need to run this DAW porperly.

    The RAM question was based on me choosing a motherboard.Some support the new memory version at added cost so I am asking what are the advantages to using the newer faster memory style?I only plan to run 1gig since my recording and DAW needs are small so will there be an advantage?
     
  4. Reggie

    Reggie Well-Known Member

    Maybe a little since you are using some samples and loops there will be some benefit. But probably only once you have many tracks of samples and virtual instruments running. In other words, if 1GB of DDR400 plays all of your samples and loops properly (most likely will), then DDR2 won't do it any "better".
     
  5. dementedchord

    dementedchord Well-Known Member

     
  6. Cyrix

    Cyrix Guest

     
  7. Cyrix

    Cyrix Guest

     
  8. dementedchord

    dementedchord Well-Known Member

    i understand you dilema.. the chipsets used quite often wouldnt make much diff to you at the level most of us are playing the game at... soundcards useually come with drivers and with few exceptions your better off using them than say generic or windoz media and s/n is so low for all intents and purposes that it's a mute point....so what's a mother to do??? as to examples of where on boards and SB's are better ... you'll find them in threads that start out with "what's wrong with this...." "why is this noisey???" and the like... in otherwords search for examples of what went wrong and you'll see them....lotsa them... BTW you posted that you're anticipateing use of cubase often a lite version of it is packaged with some soundcards and may alow you to kill two birds and all that kinda stuff.....

    and your most welcome....

    see ya round the playground....
     
  9. Cyrix

    Cyrix Guest

    From what ive read its the LE thats packaged with most soundcards not the SE but I could be wrong.I might end up using Studio 4 since its only $100 more with student pricing but Ill see on that.

    Well to cut to the chase is there a soundcard that you recomend?
     
  10. Cyrix

    Cyrix Guest

    PC Windows sound and audio hardware setupThe following procedures and hints can make your life much easier when using your PC as audio workstation. This article helps to minimize disturbing influences while you work with Steinberg host applications such like Cubase or Nuendo.

    This article assumes that you already have an ASIO compatible audio hardware in use with Steinberg applications.

    Often you can read about the tip to disable onboard sound chips in the BIOS of your computer. Unfortunately this is not always a good idea. These chips (on todays mainboards these are often already integrated) are ideally suited to let Windows play back its own generated sounds while using ASIO with your audio hardware in the host application exclusively.

    If you have no onboard sound chip (or no additional simple standard sound card) Windows will use the MME drivers of your ASIO hardware to playback e.g. system sounds or audio from the Media Player.

    Now it can happen, while your are working with your ASIO driver of your audio hardware within e.g. Cubase, that Windows generates a system sound. If your ASIO hardware with its MME ports is set as playback device in Windows it is very likely that you run into a sample rate mismatch problem.

    Windows system sound are played back with 22.05 or 32kHz. In your host application you often work with sample rates of 44.1kHz or higher. Playing back a system sound will change the sample rate of the audio hardware abruptly while you are actucally want to continue to work with the sample rate of the project - a classic example of a sample rate conflict.

    It depends of the property of the audio hardware and its drivers what can happen in this situation:


    The playback stops abrupt and it is likely that you can not start it again properly or at all
    You hear a very awkward noise
    Nothing happens it seems but your project continues to playback with more or less severe timing issues
    There are now some options to change this:

    Setups without an onboard sound chip/standard sound card (only ASIO hardware is available)
    There is not much possible to do except doing the obvious and that is disabling the Windows system sounds completely:


    Go to the Start menu > Control Panel > Sound and Audio Devices
    There select the tab "Sounds"
    Select "No sounds" as "Sound scheme"
    Confirm the following window with "No"
    This procedure eliminates to main source of sample rate mismatch issues. However, these points remain:


    Applications starting audio playback outside of an already running Steinberg application can still change the sample rate
    There is a speciality (dependent of the used video player) related to the import of video files when these files also contain an audio stream. If this stream does not use the same sample rate as the project a sample rate mismatch can also occur. This is not an application issue but due to the Windows architecture used for video playback.
    Setups with available onboard sound chip or standard sound card
    If you have such hardware available, besides your ASIO hardware, it is recommended to split the Windows playback from the ASIO playback:


    Go to the Start menu > Control Panel > Sounds and Audio Devices
    There, select the tab "Audio"
    Now make sure that you select the onboard sound chip/standard sound card as default device for "Sound playback" as well as for "Sound recording". In the example picture to the right you can see such a setup: The "Soundmax" entry is an onboard sound chip, the other ports below are from the ASIO hardware (a RME Digi96-8/PST).
    It is now essential to check the red encircled option "Use only default devices". Make sure a check mark is set.
    Now you have splitted Windows playback and ASIO playback. Everything played back within Windows is routed to the sound chip. Playback from an host application using the ASIO driver of your audio hardware is now running without interferences.
     
  11. Cyrix

    Cyrix Guest

    Here are the Realtek Audio chips found on the motherboard specs:
    High-performance DACs with 95dB SNR (A-Weighting), ADCs with 85dB SNR (A-Weighting)
    Meets performance requirements for audio on PC2001 systems and Microsoft WLP 2.x
    Ten DAC channels support 16/20/24-bit PCM format for 7.1 sound playback, plus 2 channels of independent stereo sound output (multiple streaming) through the front panel output
    2 stereo ADCs support 16/20/24-bit PCM format, one for stereo microphone, the other for legacy mixer recording
    All DACs support 44.1k/48k/96k/192kHz sample rate
    All ADCs support 44.1k/48k/96kHz sample rate
    16/20/24-bit S/PDIF-OUT supports 44.1k/48k/96k/192kHz sample rate
    16/20/24-bit S/PDIF-IN supports 44.1k/48k/96kHz sample rate
    Up to four channels of microphone array input are supported for AEC/BF application
    High-quality analog differential CD input
    Supports external PCBEEP input and built-in digital BEEP generator
    Software selectable 2.5V/3.75V VREFOUT
    Two jack detection pins, each designed to detect up to 4 jacks
    Reserve analog mixer architecture for backward compatibility with AC'97
    Wide range (–80dB ~ +42dB) volume control with 1.5dB resolution of analog to analog mixer gain
    All analog jacks are stereo input and output re-tasking for analog plug & play
    Built-in headphone amplifiers for each re-tasking jack
    2 GPIOs (General Purpose Input/Output) for customized applications
    Power support: Digital: 3.3V; Analog: 3.0V~5.0V (Minimum AVDD is 3.0V)
    Pin compatible with the ALC880 and ALC882
    Enhanced S/PDIF-IN circuitry ensures compatibility with consumer DVD players
    48-pin LQFP 'Green' package
    Meets Microsoft WHQL/WLP 2.x audio requirements
    EAX™ 1.0 & 2.0 compatible
    Direct Sound 3D™ compatible
    A3D™ compatible
    I3DL2 compatible
    HRTF 3D Positional Audio
    Emulation of 26 sound environments to enhance gaming experience
    10-Band Software Equalizer
    Voice Cancellation and Key Shifting in Karaoke mode
    Realtek Media Player
    Enhanced Configuration Panel to improve user experience
    Microphone Acoustic Echo Cancellation (AEC), Noise Suppression (NS), and Beam Forming (BF) technology for voice application
    ALC883D features optional Dolby® Digital Live output for consumer equipment
    ALC883DTS features optional DTS® Connect software
     
  12. Cyrix

    Cyrix Guest

    Now here are the specs for any run of the mill soundblaster or audigy card:
    64 audio channel playback with independent sample rates
    24-bit Analog-to-Digital conversion of analog inputs at 96kHz sample rate
    24-bit Digital-to-Analog conversion of digital sources at 96kHz to analog 5.1 speaker output
    16-bit and 24-bit recording with sampling rates of 8, 11.025, 16, 22.05, 24, 32, 44.1, 48 and 96kHz
    SPDIF output up to 24-bit resolution at selectable sampling rate of 44.1, 48 and 96kHz

    So like I said if they have the same specs and support the same drivers how do I know which one is a better source for recorind audio?SQ?
     
  13. dementedchord

    dementedchord Well-Known Member

    the sound card i'm using is the tascam fw1884... so not really a souncard persee' as much as integrated controller type thing... i normally shy away from recommending particular interfaces as i've not used them personnaly... not sure where you dug up that diatribe...
     

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