Advice on an Interface/Mixer

Discussion in 'Consoles / Control Surfaces' started by Weathers, Jun 10, 2012.

  1. Weathers

    Weathers Member

    Manchester, UK
    Hi all, I was hoping for some advice on Interfaces and/or Mixers.

    First, here is my general setup/equipment:
    Gibson J-200
    Gibson Les Paul Standard
    Fender Classic Bass
    Roland TD-8 Electronic Drumkit
    Peavey PV8 (non USB)
    (through M-Audio 1010LT soundcard)
    SE1A Condenser (x2)
    Yamaha HS50m

    I'm not too clued up on the technical aspects of recording equipment, having spent most of my time purely as a musician/songwriter, but I am getting to the point now where I want to create some hi-quality recordings (or as hi quality as possible) and am up for spending up to around £500-£600/$800-$900

    There are 2 prerequisites for any interface/mixer:

    1. Sound quality-wise, I'm looking for something to do my guitars as much justice as possible (Yea, I'm statin the bleedin obvious )
    2. I also need to be able to record multiple tracks simultaneously (4 would be enough - 1 mic for vocals, 2 mics for my acoustic and 1 for its pickup ... I suppose I could make do with just 2 XLR inputs if the sound quality got a considerable bump or the price was nicer on my wallet. 3 XLR's would be perfect but I haven't seen any)

    I know that I will need to buy a better mic at some point but I'm much more confident about them than I am about interfaces.

    I hope I haven't waffled too much. smoke

  2. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    Home Page:
    I would not go for a mixer for this recording task.

    One alternative would be to consider a stand-alone recorder, and the Zoom H4N would work for you. It has 4 tracks with 2 built-in mics and 2 XLR inputs for external mic or line inputs. It records to flash memory cards, and can plug into a computer USB port for transfer of the recorded tracks for editing.

    The other alternative is if you have a computer to use for recording (assuming that your mentioning an interface means that you do have), you could get a USB interface box such as the Lexicon I·ONIX U42S or the Presonus AudioBox 44VSL. Both of these units have 4 mic input channels, are reasonable quality and come well within your budget.
  3. matthewfreedaudio

    matthewfreedaudio Active Member

    Los Angeles
    The ZOOM H4N is not a good option for you. You mentioned having Cubase so obviously you have a computer to work with. Get a Firewire or USB interface for your computer and you'll be good to go. There are numerous computer interfaces on the market to choose from at many different price points. You get what you pay for.

    The easiest thing for you is something that has 2 or more XLR mic preamps and line inputs plus some line outputs and a headphone amp built in.

    Production Sound Mixing for TV, Film, and Commercials.
  4. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    currently Billings
    Considering the OP is using a Delta 1010LT, the Zoom H4n would be a significant and sizable step up in ADC. Also, depending on the goals, the Zoom unit will produce more than acceptable results. It is not RME or Apogee but still quite acceptable for home use.
  5. matthewfreedaudio

    matthewfreedaudio Active Member

    Los Angeles
    Look at point 2 from the OP. The Zoom H4N simply doesn't work for what and how he wants to record. The Zoom records two poly stereo files, two off the XLR inputs and two off the built in microphones. The OP needs at least 4 independent channels and the ability to overdub.

    Production Sound Mixing for TV, Film, and Commercials.
  6. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Distinguished Member

    currently Billings
    Perhaps, but the small unit that does what he really wants is about two thousand USD more than his budget. An alternative cheaper product might be the DR680 but I'd still go with a computer and 1394 interface. DAW programs aren't that complicated for basic functions and Reaper is priced right.
  7. matthewfreedaudio

    matthewfreedaudio Active Member

    Los Angeles
    The OP already has a computer and Cubase. So, all he/she needs is an interface with a few mic pres. Those can be had within their price range. It won't be a very high quality unit but it will be better than the H4N and more suited to his needs.

    Production Sound Mixing for TV, Film, and Commercials.
  8. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Member

    I know Matthew hates me but I'm with Matthew on this. PreSonus Fire Studio, $500 US. You even get a second bundled multitrack software package that's quite impressive. All within your budget. Sure, I like the ZOOM product also got all the OP needs is a FireWire interface on the desktop computer along with the FireWire device from PreSonus. Of course you're not going to drag this around anywhere are you? You don't need it to be portable do you? Not that you can't do that. It's just a bigger box of stuff to schlep.

    Now I like Matthew
    Mx. Remy Ann David

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