How to use inserts (like a compressor and stuff)

Discussion in 'Compressors / Limiters (analog)' started by mr_owen, Dec 28, 2005.

  1. mr_owen

    mr_owen Guest


    i'm fairly new to homerecording, and i was wondering, how to record mics...

    i have a firewire solo from m-audio soundcard.
    If i would buy a behringer composer or something like that,
    how should it be plugged so i can use it as an insert ?

    ps: what stuff should i buy to enhance the sound of vocal recordings?
    my setup right now is :

    m-audio firewire solo
    mic (samson)
    alesis m1 monitprs (going to buy these in 2 weeks)
    epiphone ls paul

    i'm thinking of buying a pre-amp c-1 from studio projects.
    But are there any other good devices i should by, preferably low cost like behringer and stuff, coz it is a hobby to me and i'm a poor student so ..
  2. fstfwd74

    fstfwd74 Guest

    I have not used Samson mics before (at least that I remember), but my recollection is that they leave something to be desired in regards to sound quality (somebody correct me if I'm off base). I don't know if you're using a dynamic or condenser mic.

    A condenser mic will usually give you better clarity, as well as get rid of the "proximity effect" that you get from dynamic mics. (Proximity effect means that you get more bass response from the mic if you're close to it than if you're a little distance from it.) In my opinion, no amount of "enhancing" will accomplish as good of a result as using good gear to start with.

    One of the "bang for the buck" mics on my stuff-to-get list is a Shure KSM32. Guitar Center flew me out to L.A. for training when that mic was introduced. Shure did a blind listening test comparing the KSM32 to the coveted Neuman U87. There were some discernable differences in frequency response, but several people preferred the KSM32 over the U87... and for the money, it's a great choice. The KSM32 goes for about $500, compared to the U87 which is closer to $2,900. They're also durable enough that you can use them live (although I'd keep a close eye on it, to make sure it doesn't walk off at the end of the gig). Shure drop tests their mics (including their recording mics) from six feet, so it's gotta hold up. Kelly Clarkson's crew was using half a dozen of them (or possibly a different model of the KSM series) for various instrument mics when she did a show here this month.

    In regards to using what you have... sometimes adding a little effect can help. The standards people go to a lot of times are delay and reverb, but you can really use anything that sounds good. Don't be afraid to experiment with it. I've used some odd effects on vocals before, and sometimes you get a result that really works for what you're doing.
  3. jahtao

    jahtao Guest

    Don't buy any behringer outboard gear if you can help it. Do you need compression when recording vox or are you hoping to get a special sound from the box? I suspect the later. A better mic would probably be a better idea, i think most would agree. A condenser mic would be best. A large diaphragm one tailored for vocals probably. Seriously this is what you should do: decide how much money you are willing to spend. Tell us (and and we will recomend mics in your price range. Then go to a shop/store and arrange a time when you can (don't be intimidated) try out say 3 or 4 of them TO SEE WHICH ONE BEST SUITS YOUR VOICE. Maybe bring along your samson to compare them to, thats what bad asses like me do. If you just buy one it make you sound all toppy when you want to be bassy and creamy.
  4. mugtastic

    mugtastic Active Member

    Dec 9, 2005
    you would plug the mic into the pre-amp/compressor then into whatever you used to plug the mic into (soundcard).
    "insert" usually means taking a signal from a mixer or recorder out to effects or processors and then back into the mixer/recorder. this can be done with single signal paths while recording or a track after it is recorded, or a stereo mix all at once (the beginnings of "mastering").
    i'm moving out of the "cheapest way to improve sounds" way of thinking, but i've been very glad for the behringer products that have allowed me to experiment and improve for little expense.
  5. Antho

    Antho Guest

    yeah, there are some decent Behry devices, including the composer compressor, that would be ok in terms of the other gear you've got, and well within the budget you are outlining.

    ART (applid research and technology) make some good low end pres and compressor stuff too, and a lot of people probably prefer it over Behry.
  6. rhydian

    rhydian Active Member

    Jan 26, 2005
    Southwell, Nottingham, UK

    Best budget mike:

    Rode NT2A

    Best budget compressor:
    go for software plugins rather than hardware......depends on what sequencer you plan on using. Many have one bundled
  7. sibleypeck

    sibleypeck Guest

    I have almost no recording experience, but I do have an opinion about the KSM32.

    I saw Alison Krause perform at a small venue where her voice just didn't sound right. But on the last song, for some reason, she sang thru the mic the slide player had been using all night - and her voice sounded just like it does on a CD. I was so impressed that I asked the guy running the board what it was, and it turned out to be a KSM32.

    I'm a 52-year-old male, but will a KSM32 do for me what it did for her?

  8. ggunn

    ggunn Guest

    Yes, absolutely. It will make your voice sound exactly like Allison Krause's on her CD's. ;^)

  9. sibleypeck

    sibleypeck Guest

    Where is a good place to get good equipment?

    I have made purchases from Full Compass, BSW, and Sweetwater, and have discovered that I like dealing with one of those companies best, but won't say which because I don't want to be accused of spamming. But as I get more serious about recording, and expect to invest more in high quality gear, I would like to know what companies some of the pros and semi-pros like dealing with, and why.

  10. StevenColbert

    StevenColbert Member

    Feb 13, 2006
    I have had all good exp with many good equipment dealers. Some of these are...
    Soundpure (best deals going, NO JOKE, best prices anywhere!!!!)
    Musicians Friend (always does a great job)
    Zzounds (good dealer also)
    Mercenary audio (Flecther always has great, well informed advice)
    These are just a few names, there are more.
    I used to go to LittleDogAudio as well, but Chris is no longer selling gear.
    The great thing about Soundpure are the prices, also the writeup's on there web-page about the gear itself. Also somewhere like Mercenary audio and LittleDogAudio, those guys have nice prices AND are well informed studio owners that have used the gear and have opinions on the gear, and they are happy to discuss it with you.
    And lastly, if you know what you want, and you know what it cost brand new, shop ebay for used gear and you will save some real dough on ebay as well
  11. IIRs

    IIRs Well-Known Member

    Oct 23, 2005
    My only experience with Samson mics is a CL8 I picked up cheap because I wanted another LDC with a fig 8 pattern for mid side stereo: the switches feel very flimsy, but the sound is really rather good.

    Nope. Proximity effect occurs in all directional mics including condensors .. only omnis are immune.

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