Microphone not working with focusrite scarlett 2i2

Discussion in 'Converters / Interfaces' started by arcticx7, May 8, 2018.

  1. arcticx7

    arcticx7 Active Member

    Joined:
    May 8, 2018
    Location:
    Italy
    Hello,
    I'm just getting started in the producing world.
    I bought a really cheap condenser microphone with an xlr to usb cable and it works, just doesn't get enough power obviously. So I decided to purchase the focusrite scarlett 2v2 2nd generation. I registered my product, downloaded the necessary latest driver, plugged my microphone in, the light flashes and then turns off. I have the switch selected to "line", i have gain almost to the max, i have the 48v phantom power supply switch turned on. I need to microphone not only for recording, but I mostly need it for skype, discord, in-game microphone. I have tried plugging my guitar in the audio interface and it works fine, when i play chords the light turns green, I can record to fl studio, etc. But with the microphone when I talk nothing happens.
    Any help is greatly appreciated, thanks :)
     
  2. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    Home Page:
    You don't tell us the make and model of your microphone, but from what you say in your post, it sounds as though you the cable you are using between the microphone and the Scarlett has an XLR female connector on the microphone end and a TRS jack plug on the interface end. This will not provide phantom power to the microphone, as phantom power is available only on the XLR input connector of the interface. You need an XLR-XLR cable.
     
  3. arcticx7

    arcticx7 Active Member

    Joined:
    May 8, 2018
    Location:
    Italy
  4. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    Home Page:
    I didn't need to ask about the quality of the microphone, since that's predictable, but the make and model information allows us to get a clue as to how it's powered. In this case, it appears that it is meant to be powered only from a computer USB socket that can provide enough current at +5V. It looks as though the audio output of the microphone is separately brought out on a 3.5mm TRS jack plug for plugging into a computer motherboard microphone input. Whether the tip and ring are connected together on the jack plug to send the microphone signal to both L and R inputs is not evident from the information you provided.

    The information does not say whether the microphone manufacturers have made provision for 48V phantom powering, and one can only hope that they have designed it so there is no harm done by supplying it with 48V rather than the 5V it was expecting.

    What I would try is continuing to use the USB plug for powering, but get or make a suitable adaptor that will take the 3.5mm jack plug and convert it to a an XLR input to go into your interface. This will not be a simple TRS plug to XLR connection, but probably an adaptor with the tip going to pin 2 of the XLR and the sleeve going to both pins 1 and 3. When using this adaptor, it is important that you leave the 48V phantom power turned OFF on the interface.
     
    kmetal likes this.
  5. arcticx7

    arcticx7 Active Member

    Joined:
    May 8, 2018
    Location:
    Italy
    Ah... I don't understand what you just said, but the point you're making is that this mic is not designed to be powered by 48V phantom power supply? I think honestly at this point it would just be easier to get a new condenser microphone that will work with my audio interface, since the quality this mic is at, by just connecting it to the pc is awful to say the least...
    I know that it's really easy to search "condenser microphones under 100$" but do you have any recommendations of your own? I would need it for gaming, streaming, discord, but also for recording my acoustic guitar, saxophone, vocals, etc.
    I have been looking at these three:
    https://www.amazon.de/dp/B002T45X16/?tag=r06fa-20
    https://www.amazon.de/dp/B0007NQH98/?tag=r06fa-20
    https://www.amazon.de/dp/B00B5ZX9FM/?tag=r06fa-20
    I obviously like the MXL770 better simply because of the price.. hahaha
    But if you have any recommendations they are very welcome :)
     
  6. paulears

    paulears Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Location:
    Lowestoft - UK
    Home Page:
    I know it may have been a typo but you did say when the interface is set to LINE? You are not using the line input, but the mic input????

    Basic questions - too many variables here.

    The mic is designed with a USB output. I thought maybe it was a standard condenser, with the audio to USB built into the cable - but I don't think it is. My German is a bit rusty but one line seems to say
    "the condenser microphone only works on the computer, laptop, which have a USB port"

    Could the cable simply be just a cable? The very popular budget mics operate on a variety of voltages - but maybe this one simply doesn't?

    You need to try a different microphone - can you borrow one? The vague specs, and USB plus audio connection just scream non-standard connection, which your interface can't cope with by the sound of it (or no sound of it!).

    For what it's worth - USB mics can be fine for podcasters with the mic on the lips almost, but recording g at a distance, using two for stereo, and good gain performance is beyond most of them. For £30-50 there are some really good mics available. Amazon is fine to buy from IF you understand what you're buying, but the quality and accuracy of the adverts for the products on Amazon are terrible. Many poorly translated, many simply copied and pasted from different products, and so many sold by box shifters who have never even looked in the boxes they sell.
     
  7. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    Home Page:
    Frankly, I would be very wary of looking at a condenser mic in the sub-$100 range. This is mainly because of compromises made to get the price down to that level, but also the variation between individual units is often so great that you might get an acceptable one or you might get a dud. If you had a box if them to go through and pick one you thought was reasonably OK, it would be a different matter, but ordering one from Amazon or anywhere else online is a lottery. The AT models at least get a test before being sold, and I'm told that many are indeed rejected, so there is some consistency there. I can't say I'm a fan of the AT20xx series, as I find the so-called presence boost in the mid-top end very wearing to listen to and difficult to correct with equalisation.

    With $100 to spend, my instinct would be to reach for a quality dynamic microphone. That amount easily covers a Shure SM57 or SM58, and could well stretch to the Beta 57/58 models that give you the extra half-octave top end to rival the sound of a mid-range condenser. If you could splash out a little more, consider the Heil PR40, one of the very top mics for podcasters.
     
  8. paulears

    paulears Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Location:
    Lowestoft - UK
    Home Page:
    I think we must agree to disagree on this one. The SM57/58 really don't sound that much different to Betas - I'm not certain the extra top end is that much use - and a twist of the eq knob makes that kind of difference to the Beta non-Beta Shures, but they really are still mellow mics, with not much at the top - switching to a Beta 86 for 87 is a BIG change, not the subtle one with the Beta 57/58.

    Dynamics are great for sticking on your lips, but so much of what we record nowadays stretches the preamps quite a bit once you start moving back and trying to record acoustic guitars.

    I used to sell loads of Chinese sourced microphones, but I don't any longer. In around 700 sales of condensers only one was dead on arrival, and two had higher noise figures. The huge majority were fully functional. The large diaphragm types were all quite nice, but if you had to find a generic term to describe the sound, they were all bright - like the Audio Technica sound, and none were mellow like the old original Oktava 319s I still have somewhere. If you compare them to something like AKG414s, then there is a big difference - but with eq, you can tame them perfectly well, and they are good at distances. The small diaphragm ones I bought in large quantities were copies of AKG 451s, and even had the horrible fine thread on the capsules. The hypercardioids were very useful for conferences (the main use, with a bit of radio), and the omni capsules came in handy on ensemble/choir type jobs.

    I had a few samples of those dirt cheap condensers that sell on Ebay and work on phantom or 5V supplies from computer sockets, and given a choice of an SM57 or one of these for an all round mic for a first time buyer, the cheap condenser sounds better - there's clarity, cleanliness and the ability to work away from the source. The 57 works better on a snare drum, or in front of a screamer - but that's not everyday recording for most newcomers. If I was starting from scratch, not wanting to spend huge sums, I'd buy a cheap condenser first, then probably a 57 as mic 2, or with what I do, I'd buy TWO cheap condensers first.

    Of course the Chinese mics are not matched like expensive ones are, but that really doesn't matter at the entry point. Once you buy better ones, you're probably better skilled by then to hear the differences, but while I started with an SM57 in the late 70s when I could afford the huge price, nowadays the choice is better.
     
    cyrano likes this.
  9. pcrecord

    pcrecord Quality recording seeker ! Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2013
    Location:
    Quebec, Canada
    Home Page:
    Good point, in the mix wizard, the input needs to be set to mic.

    SM57 and 58 works fine on vocal when you have a good preamp. But even with a scarlett, if the room isn't treated, a condenser may be a disaster (I hate noises and bad room reflexions).
    Also, If the signer plays an instrument a 58 or M1 is often my first choice. (of course with a UA LA-610, it's an other game...) But hey, we don't have to agree on everything. ;)
     
  10. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2009
    Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
    Home Page:
    Besides the shure SM’s, I’ve had good luck with the $30 Peavy PV1 mic, and the AT 3035 for a budget condenser.

    @paulears dude we definitely agree to disagree about the beta series. I think they sound significantly different. Maybe not on a snare thru a mediocre PA system, in an open air venue, but on vocals or acoustic guitar I found the different stark. I tried them side by side thru the PA system at GC.

    Since you can get a 3035, and sm57 on the used market for about $100 (total for both mics) why not get both?
     
    pcrecord likes this.
  11. paulears

    paulears Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Location:
    Lowestoft - UK
    Home Page:
    Yep - plenty of good stuff here to show the huge range of opinions. I'm always happy with other people's opinions. The very understated thing with mics is that very often we stick to our old tested solutions and are very wary of change, plus, not all the same mics sound the same. In my band we probably do a 50/50 split of all our own kit and PA and drive/fly-ins where everything bar the guitars and keys is supplied - and we usually ask for Beta 58s. We use 3 x B58s and an SM86 - mainly because I find that one more pleasing in my in-ears, and as we sing close harmonies, hearing is really important. The B58 just kind of hides my voice? Sometimes we soundcheck with the supplied Beta 58s, but our drummer cannot stand smelly mics - and most hire PA mics are spit bound, or worse, smoke bound and stink. So we do the sound check, and he complains, so we swap their mics for ours and the monitors honk, HF goes up, and my 86 takes people's heads off and they reset many of the things set on the smell set. Same brand, same model - not all 58s are equal. If you have a dull one, or a bright one, your opinion of them changes. Mics are I think, a bit like jewellery - they have specifications, but the looks and what you get out of them changes big time!

    Consistency should be better than it is - but I guess that's user abuse, not manufacturing or design. I've always liked the way the US Presidents had identical mix setups and you always hear your Presidents sound the same. We don't do that, and comparing video clips shows huge variety in captured sound from the same voice. The US was is better - the 57 may not be the most expensive and highest quality, but does seem to survive really well - never being used on the lips in most cases.
     
    pcrecord and kmetal like this.
  12. kmetal

    kmetal Kyle P. Gushue Distinguished Member

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2009
    Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
    Home Page:
    With a particular female singer I worked with, the band insisted on the B58. It was magic thru their mackie board, but overzealous thru the studio live. I kept telling them to switch to the standard 58, when usisng the SL.

    I could take or leave the B58 in general, but I think the b57 brings something worthy of its own merit as a separate mic from the 57 imho.

    You bring up a good point about Mics of the same make and model not sounding the same. I’ve not noticed this with my various 57’s, but have with 414s.
     
  13. Phillip

    Phillip Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2019
    Location:
    Idaho
    I have the same problem that I have had ever since Mac updated to Mojave. No one at Scarlett knows what the issue is so I am hoping someone here can help. I dont use any software. I have the Scarlett plugged directly into the mac by USB and I have a mic in position 1 and 1 in position 2. The mic in #1 works fine meaning I have sound when I do my Podcast. The mic is #2 does not work, meaning there is no sound, but I do see the lights on the Scarlett light to indicate its working. I tested this issue by switching the cables/mics from position 1 and 2. When i switched them, the mic that has previously not worked, now works fine and the one that worked before does not work anymore. So this tells me that the cables and the mics are not the problem. Im guessing that somehow my mac is no longer able to distinguish the 2 inputs and is treating it like one single mic. Any one have any ideas how to fix this?
     
  14. paulears

    paulears Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Location:
    Lowestoft - UK
    Home Page:
    You say you don’t use any software? But you must? The problem is going to be routing in whatever app you use via whatever driver is loaded.

    If you go to sound preferences this is your default setting, which is mono! It allows you to replace the internal mic with something else. Is the usb driver visible in the list? Is it selected? If you go to a proper daw app, any of them as far as I am aware, then there will be routing to record in two channel mode from your stereo usb source. Where is the record button you are using? It’s in an application and we need this info to go further.
     
  15. Makzimia

    Makzimia The Minstrel Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2014
    Location:
    Hyde, England
    @Phillip
    OS X, no matter what version, uses core audio. In addition to that, depending on the interface you might have a mixer/control type software install. In your case the first thing I would check is the audio/midi controls built into OSX. Check you can see the Scarlett there first and that it is in fact the chosen interface.

    One thing that has happened to me and many others is that during a OS update the default choices can get put back in play ie: macs own audio, being socket and built in speakers.

    Cheers,

    Tony
     
  16. Phillip

    Phillip Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2019
    Location:
    Idaho
    Nope there is no software and no driver. Only PC's require the driver. Macs dont need one. The recording happens inside of Blog Talk Radio, but there is no software i install. Everything worked fine until I upgraded the OS. This is the exact same set up I used before I upgraded. Interesting on the mono vs stereo. I read that somewhere as well so I tried that but nothing. no change what-so-ever.

    I have about Macs requiring approval for the mic to work, but that would not make since because the mic works, but just 1 of them does. So it sounds like the mono vs stereo thing might be more likely.

    I really dont want to downgrade the OS, but if it comes to that, I will do so. I have done everything so far I can think of including swapping out the Scarlett for a brand new one and even trying a different brand. I got a Roland to try and it did the exact same thing.
     
  17. Phillip

    Phillip Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2019
    Location:
    Idaho
    Interesting on the controls you speak of in the Mac. Where would I find these? I have though about software, but not sure what to try or use. The Scarlett is supposed to have come with Pro Tools, but I have yet to get it. if I can get that from them, I will give that a try
     
  18. Phillip

    Phillip Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2019
    Location:
    Idaho
    Where do I need to check this at?
     
  19. paulears

    paulears Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Location:
    Lowestoft - UK
    Home Page:
    Click on the loudspeaker icon top right. Select Sound Preferences. Click on input and you will see it says internal microphone normally. If you are using the interface then it is using either an OS standard driver, or This makes sense now - the Scarlett is a class complaint device, so no driver required - BUT - your blogging system is mono! So the first input is routed to it, and the other goes nowhere at all. If you need two mics, then you need a mixer. If you get protools or any of the others installed, you will have access to as many channels as the interface connected has. If I plug one of my digital mixers into my MacBook - 32 inputs suddenly appear, with 32 outputs. However - you select the routing in the DAW.
     
  20. Phillip

    Phillip Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2019
    Location:
    Idaho
    Very interesting. So Blog Talk Radio (BTR) is the problem? They only record in mono and my set up in Stereo? Is that what you are saying? If so, this makes since. So I either need to contact BTR and find out of they can record in Stereo, or record in some software and upload it in Stereo, or find another platform for my Podcast. What software do you recommend? I dont need anything fancy. I used BTR because the sound was very nice and I did not have to do any edits of any kind
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice