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Pre-amp dilemma!

Discussion in 'Recording' started by GravityRoots, Mar 5, 2010.

  1. GravityRoots

    GravityRoots Guest

    Hi, I'm looking to lay down some nice quality bass, guitar, and vocal tracks. I was using SM58s for a while just to demo and recently I've begun to hate the sound, as I am trying to add a more "organic" element to my electronic music. I purchased a presonus tube pre and with an sm57 it is really an incredible improvement. However, using the unit as a DI box the bass is noisy to the point where it's unrecordable.

    My question is, should I ditch the presonus altogether and get a nicer preamp, or get a preamp just for bass guitar. I don't have a large budget but if it is worth it I would be willing to spend more. Everything is going into a tascam fw 1082 into logic pro 8. Thanks in advance!
  2. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    First, the SM57 is the same mic as the SM58.

    Second, the Tascam is going to be the limiting factor on any preamp you purchase. It will color whatever goes into it's preamps (it doesn't have true line inputs) and it's less than stellar analog circuitry. I think your best bet is to upgrade your interface to the next level.
  3. GravityRoots

    GravityRoots Guest

    Thanks for the quick reply. I am considering buying an apogee duet, and use the tascam as a control surface, since it is decent for that. Would this be a good idea? thanks
  4. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    The Apogee preamps are better than the Tascam but still nothing too impressive. You'd probably be better served with a TC Electronics Impact Twin. It looks like an updated Konnekt 24D. The preamps and circuitry are better I believe than the Apogee. If the Tascam works as a control surface then use it. Just don't rely on it's digital conversion or analog circuitry.
  5. boxcar

    boxcar Active Member

    if you don't want to spend a lot of money yet, you could use a $40 passive D.I. box straight into the tascam (XLR) for bass.
    you'd still be using the tascam pres but it wouldn't be noisy.
  6. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    I'm not sure that is correct. The 1082 has 8 anologue inputs. At least four of those are true line inputs. Also, the 1082 is made in conjunction with Frontier Designs. I'm not sure how that factors into the equation. It seems to be a fairly decent unit. These products were made to be direct in competition with the digi002.

    On another note, the Blue Tube isn't a true tube preamp. It's your standard starved plate tube tech that basically adds distortion to your input. Not that it's a bad preamp necessarily but it may not be exactly what you think it is.
  7. soapfloats

    soapfloats Well-Known Member

    Exactly why I don't use mine much anymore.
    Pretty much every "tube" preamp in this price range works in this manner.
    On certain sources (not bass) w/ certain mics, I like mine.
    If it adds coloration you like, use it. But your ears have to be the judge, nothing else.

    If you have the budget for a nicer preamp, go for it.
    If the bass is your biggest concern, get a good DI box.
    Otherwise, play w/ the signal chain you already have.
    What's the output level on the bass? The preamp?
    Which seems to be adding the noise?
  8. GravityRoots

    GravityRoots Guest

    The noise comes from the presonus tube pre. When I have a cable attached to it, it even starts to pick up AM radio stations, very loudly I might add lol. Once i plug in a Gibson LP the noise seems to go away but with a Fender Jazz bass i get this buzz, that even with a gate ruins every recording. I've decided to keep my tascam unit and bought a sansamp bass driver, along with a Rode Nt1a. Thanks for the replies and the help... I'll put some samples once i get the gear. The SM57 through the presonus isn't all that bad... probably best vocals i've recorded so far (Haven't recorded much), but on acoustic guitar and amp cabs its meh at best.
  9. hueseph

    hueseph Well-Known Member

    Fender Jazz Bass has single coil pickups which are prone to noise. A better quality cable may help. You might make some effort to properly shield the pickup cavity in the bass as well. Look here. Otherwise, you may want to just find a position that minimizes the noise. It could be that the wiring in the house is contributing to your problem. If the outlet is not properly grounded, this will just augment the problem. It doesn't help that the Blue Tube does not have a ground wire in the power supply.
  10. Davedog

    Davedog Distinguished Member

    Your jazz bass has a problem with its grounding strap having a cold solder joint. I have a couple of em. When both pickups are on, they should cancel any buzz. You may get proximity buzz with only one pickup but should not with both.

    You cables may also be the problem.Buy a cheap cable tester. It doesnt matter what manufacturer at this point but they are a great help especially when you have a lot of cables.
  11. planet10

    planet10 Active Member

    radial DI boxes, Mogami cable, and your in a better place than before.
  12. Todzilla

    Todzilla Active Member

    May fave bass DI is our bass player's Avalon U5. I thought my Demeter pre was the $*^t for bass DI, but when it heard the Avalon, it unfastened itself from my rack and scurried over to the corner of the room, where it sat a wept silently.
  13. planet10

    planet10 Active Member

    anavlon U5 YES its great as well thats why i have 2!!

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