meters are not matching up

Discussion in 'Microphones (live or studio)' started by MightyMilk, Mar 10, 2006.

  1. MightyMilk

    MightyMilk Guest

    i'm trying to record an acoustic part with two matched pair condensors. the condensors are plugged into my mackie vlz1604, levels are set there, then two unbalanced 1/4" cables running from the sub outs, into two channels of my old tascam 788 portastudio. the mackie reads the signals as being between 0db - +4db. the recorder (which trim levels are set to the lowest or line level) is reading the signal at -16db.

    i can't figure out what the problem is, am i missing something?
  2. Kev

    Kev Well-Known Member

    Nov 13, 2001
    I don't know your unit specifically
    it doesn't suprise me that 0dBu to +4dBu
    lands inside a digital unit at around -16dBFS

    you must use the dB extensions like dBu, dBm, dBFS and so on
    or it will never begin to make sense

    one thing to know about your digital unit is
    what analog level will produce -0dBFS
    when at 0dBFS what analog level will come out
  3. MightyMilk

    MightyMilk Guest

    i'm going to check this out tonight, but i would imagine in order to get my levels up high enough for the recorder, i would be get clipping on the mixer meters?

    so if this happens, do i back the mixer levels down until they don't clip, and then adjust the rest of the input gain i need with the recorders trim knobs?
  4. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Member

    Sep 26, 2005
    You may also be experiencing the difference between actual "quasi" VU metering versus peak metering meters. Peak metering ballistics and vu metering ballistics are completely different and indicate different levels as well. They both show you import information but on different levels, quite literally.

    Plus, the Teac/TASCAM stuff wants to see a -10 DB input with reference to 1 volt. The Mackie outputs a + 4 DB level with reference to a .775 volt output. The Mackie will in all probability overload the inputs of your Teac/TASCAM stuff. Try taking the white and red RCA outputs from your Mackie into your Porta studio, instead. I hate this kind of problem when dealing with professional studio level outputs and Teacs idea of how things should be.

    Made in America
    Ms. Remy Ann David
  5. MightyMilk

    MightyMilk Guest

    thanks for the replies, i'll both your ideas. to be honest i always thought my meters would match up across the board, guess not.
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