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Setup for mobile recording.

Discussion in 'Recording' started by Boswell, Jan 12, 2010.

  1. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    The best value performer in 8-10 channel FireWire interfaces is the RME FireFace 800. It has only 4 mic pre-amps, but 6 further line inputs that will take the outputs of external boutique pre-amps, S/PDIF and 2 ADAT ports (16 channels) when you need to expand further. FF800s come up fairly regularly second-hand; I got one for just over £500.

    What's your budget for microphones?
  2. bigshum

    bigshum Active Member

    Hello Boswell,

    Thanks for your reply I have had a look at the Fireface and I am tempted. At the moment I am leaning towards a Presonus Firestudio it is the lower end of the budget for me at around £400 and offers the 8 preamps I require. Also I am waiting til next year to expand on the preamps front whilst I have the facilities at university and other places to get a better feel for what I may wish to invest in myself. My immediate need is the preamp count and I feel the Firestudio is a better deal for me. Expandability is something that I am sure I will be happy to have in the future when my experience and budget allow and that is also something Presonus offers.

    I see the RME is a Firewire 800 device does this give it a great advantage over 400 devices other than daisy chaining?

    Microphone wise I also own an Audio Technica AT4040 and AKG C1000s and have access to various dynamics, condensers and a couple of ribbons at university and a circle of friends that lend between us so I am looking to save and purchase microphones in the summer. I would like to be able to say I could afford around £300-£400. I realise that most pairs of ribbons are going to fall out of this price range so i'm probably looking at a pair of condensers again. I saw a pretty good price on a pair of Joe Meek JM27 and also AKG C214 but I really would like something versatile like a multi-pattern or at least figure of 8 to further explore the techniques mentioned above that i have learnt recently.

    I fell in love with ribbons recently after recording my sister's harp on campus (with a Royer) and had the opportunity to play in lovely friendly studio in North London and a pair of SE RNR1s. Happy Times. So maybe my eyes are bigger than my stomach in this case :)
  3. jg49

    jg49 Well-Known Member

    The Presonus Firestudio is a 26x26 unit, has ADAT capabilities, can be daisy chained with up two more of the same units (which would be three rack units) has eight preamps but is not as high a quality as the RME. I don't think the preamps have sufficient gain to reliably use ribbon mics however, might check that feature out before deciding. Just curious, why the need for so many channels as it sounds like you are recording classical music? Also you do not yet own the mics for so many channels.
  4. bigshum

    bigshum Active Member

    As mentioned previously I do have access to a fair amount of microphones and do regularly need more than 4 inputs - one of the projects I am involved in is a large set of musical machines and MIDI automated drums which really does require lots of inputs... lots of dynamics on it for live use with small diaphragm condensers on Glocks and other parts and an SE2200a on another machine and mics borrowed off buddies then when you throw room mics in it starts to add up - hence the live desk we use now is fine but for multitrack recording when we are out of the studio I think this is my more comfortable option.

    As for the pre issue with ribbon mics I am fully aware that the Firestudio may not cut it in that department. However, preamps are something I am looking into for next year so I am more confident I will be able to delve into Ribbons myself in 2011. In the meantime I can use them on campus and such so I can get a better idea of what I want in a ribbon mic/pre. Interestingly enough the preamps on my MG12/4 mixer were more than capable of handling the signal from a Coles 4038 in the summer I was surprised to be honest but it sounded awesome on the snare.

    In any case I have access to a couple of ribbons so there'll be no harm in trying to see what it sounds like. Unfortunately the RME truly is outside of my budget at the moment and I can't see any amazing offers new or second hand right now. And after purchasing new mics I'll be in need of the Firestudios 8 inputs

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