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Accessories for Home Recording

Hello everybody!

I'm new to this forum - wish me luck...

At home, I have two sources for recording: my Roland EXR-3 Organ and a microphone for singing. The organ is connected to the computer with a midi cable, through the “gameport joystick” input of a very old sound blaster 16. The microphone is connected to my PC’s onboard mic input, through an XLR to PL adapter + PL to stereo adapter.
I work with Cubase 1.06.

Now, the midi works just fine. I echo the midi back to the organ for playback, and it works great. It appears that my organ has a fairly good built-in sound moudle for midi rendering.
However, the problem starts with the microphone: first of all, I'm experiencing a very long latency. Secondly, due to the existance of so many adapters, my frail mic input barely holds the damn thing... Think about it: XLR output > XLR to PL Adapter > PL to stereo adapter > poor mic input. It causes the adapters to bend and I had to bind it with a strap to prevent disturbances (and I still have to play with the plugs before recording so there won't be a static noise).

From this I concluded that I need to buy a decent sound card for recording. The question is: how far should I go? If the midi works fine, what do I care leaving it as it is - connected to my gameport joystick? I’ve surveyed the market and it seems that entry-level sound cards, that contain both midi and sound inputs (by companies like M-Audio or Audiophile, for instance) are pretty expensive. Do I really need such a thing? Or would it be best to buy a sound card solely for the XLR input? As for now I don’t think I’d like to add more midi instruments; maybe maybe in the future I’d like another sound instrument (let’s say – a guitar mic). But since I’m already buying, I want something good that will answer my demands now and in the not-too-far future.

I’d appreciate if you folks can direct me a bit…Besides, I’m having trouble with all the technical terms related to those new sound cards: 24 bit? 96khz? So shedding some light about these issues would be also very helpful.

Thanks in advance!



TeddyG Mon, 07/24/2006 - 05:46
What is "pretty expensive" - I don't know?

Here's a suggestion.

Look over the Lynx line of audio cards, starting with the LynxOne. Even if the Lynx stuff IS too pricey, if you read over what they offer, you'll have a better idea of what you'd REALLY like to have, soundcard-wise. Sort've like looking over the Porsches, then going out and buying the closest possible Ford....?

That said, the LynxOne DOES have a nice two port MIDI capability and a wonderful analog section(Stereo or two mono) only - the L-22 is "newer" and has more capability, but NO MIDI. You WOULD need things like a mic preamp and maybe other stuff, which would add cost, for this kind of card.

Another thought would be an "all-in-one" USB device which plugs into your computers USB port - done! They come in a variety of configs(Most include recording software) with MIDI/mic preamps/line inputs/speaker outputs/headphone amp,, etc., so you just plug-in your mic(Organ), speakers, headphones and go. Even the cheaper ones would probably do you a "nice" job, as well as being a learning experience to help you determine where you might want to improve in the future.

Lexicon, would be a brand to search and there are MANY others.

The "Sweetwater" on-line catalog is a great, nicely organized, place to "look around" at what's available......