1. Register NOW and become part of this fantastic knowledge base forum! This message will go away once you have registered.

Signal from tape to digital too hot

Discussion in 'Recording' started by nandoph8, Oct 2, 2004.

  1. nandoph8

    nandoph8 Active Member

    I want to go straight from my tape machine to my digital interfaces. The probelm is I hit tape really hard and when I go straight to the intrfaces they clip. I'm trying to avoid going through the preamps again. There is no gain reducer on my interfaces so I have to do it before it hits them. Any sugestions?
     
  2. Massive Mastering

    Massive Mastering Well-Known Member

    Can you fill us in on the interface?
     
  3. nandoph8

    nandoph8 Active Member

    I have two MOTU 1224's and I upgraded to the 424 pci card. I use nuendo 2 and there is a gain reduction on the program but obviuosly the interface is still getting hit pretty bad.
     
  4. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    reduce the repro gain.
     
  5. nandoph8

    nandoph8 Active Member

    on the tape machine?
     
  6. mikE@THECAVE

    mikE@THECAVE Guest

    Nan -is there a way you can compress the signal some before the master
     
  7. nandoph8

    nandoph8 Active Member

    I guess I could but I kind of want to avoid that. I want the cleanest, truest signal going in there so it's just like I'm mixing off my tape machine
     
  8. mikE@THECAVE

    mikE@THECAVE Guest

    well i understand that and am with you on keeping your signal clean but whats probably is happening is just a few peaks are distorting on you --maybe go for more a limiter that just effects the peaks -then you can bring the signal up get a hotter sound (more ummph) and still not peak out.Then you wont be compressing everything
     
  9. EricK

    EricK Guest

    I get around this problem in one of two ways. Like recorderman, I prefer to reduce the Repro gain on the tape machine. If I'm in a hurry, the other method I use is to patch a something between the tape out and converter in. Usually I'll go for something like a DBX compressor or similar. I don't use it as a compressor though. Set the threshold as high as it will go, and the ratio to 1:1. I don't want compression, just gain control. Then I turn the output gain down about 2 db or so. Any piece of gear will work, so long as it is clean, and can be set up for just level control.
     
  10. RecorderMan

    RecorderMan Distinguished Member

    YES.

    Play your source material and tweak the output of the tape machine done untill you no longer get overs. Then put up your "tones" reel and use 1khz to dial the outs to the same amount, so that they are equally reduced on all out puts the same; and you'll know how many db that is for future reference.
     
  11. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    The way I used to do analog to digital transfers was to run the analog into the console and trim levels there and then route those channels to the digital recorder.

    The way RM says to do it is the only way you will get a pure transfer sans any added processing of one type or another.
     
  12. nandoph8

    nandoph8 Active Member

    Ok I iwll try trimming the output on the tape machine but I have a Tascam MS-16 and unlike most 2" machines where the controls have aeasy access, I have to find where mine are. Thank you guys!!!
     
  13. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Obviously you have never calibrated the machine. Do you have a MRL calibration tape? If not, do not mess with the calibration ... you will only screw things up and you won't be able to get back to where you started. You will never get it right again without having the machine realigned.

    In the case of the MS16, I would not trim the output cal levels down ... these are before the NR section and this is going to muck up the NR levels causing anomalies in the playback. RMs advice does not pertain to this scenario.

    Run it through a mixer and trim the levels .. the added noise will be negligible as you will be lowering the levels, not increasing them.
     
  14. nandoph8

    nandoph8 Active Member

    thanks, and I have my machine calibrated everyt six months
     
  15. Kurt Foster

    Kurt Foster Distinguished Member

    Poor wording on my part ... I intended to say, you have never calibrated the machine yourself .. It's obvious because if you had, you would know where the trim pots were. Sorry for the confusion ..

    I should ask ... is the tape you wish to transfer encoded with DBX? I was assuming it was but I now realize this is a 1" machine we are disscussing ... in many cases, operators turn the DBX off on these machines ... For rock and pop music they are very useable without the NR ..

    If the tape is not encoded ... then you may trim the outputs down if you like. The trim pots are behind the meter panel I believe.. your owners manual should say. Be sure to record some reference tones on a piece of tape. Record 1K at 0 dB for about 90 seconds across all the tracks. Once you do that, you can use it as a refernce to return the playback to it's correct levels once you are finished with the transfer.

    Another question ... is this machine running at -10 dB level or +4 dB level? If you are running -10 dB (on rca connectors) , is it possible to use +4 dB level on the inputs of the DAW you are transfering to? This may solve your problem ....
     
  16. nandoph8

    nandoph8 Active Member

    thank you sir. I actually run all balanced. I don't use the NR either. I will try going from the RCA outs to balnaced, I think you might be right.
     

Share This Page