Hello, im new here but not to producing music. I mainly produce electronic music, but my brother is a singer that wishes to get into recording his own vocal performances over Karaoke tracks. In order to do this he has pruchased some gear Rode NT1, stand, pop shield, Rokit RP5, Reason Ballance interface, the D.A.W of choice is directed by me because this is the one I know best to help him, and is simple enough for him to learn, yet powerfull enough to grow into. Onto my problem is all about two areas, gain stanging, and monitoring. Gain staging and working with a vocalist. While im not new to music production, I am to recording vocals, and am in turn learning myself to teach him. From what Iv gathered I should be setting his mic input gain so it reads -10 or lower at its highest peeks. The only way I can get to set this up is if he sings the loudest part of a song, is that fair to expect him to do this on tap over and over again, shouldnt he at least warm up first? So im sitting them asking him to sing the loudest part as if he was going for a recording, I set it up to -10db, then he goes for recording and one round the peek is at -25 db, another try he is hitting -2db with no head room. What is being done wrong here? Monitoring his own Vocals,"not loud enough" Assuming we get the input gain correct, we now have a second issue, he cant hear his own voice. This has arrived from what I see as two areas. 1: he is singing along with a mastered piece of music which has had its dynamics crushed, where as his own voice is, well! as dynamic as it can get from -28 to -6db. Should he need to improve his mic technique a little, should I have to turn that music crazy low so he can hear his own vocals? 2: He is monitoring his voice through Reason and does not seem to monitor as lound as when played back after recording? He is using decent headphones that are 250 ohm, the audio interface has not enough power for headphones, plus the monitoring is so low anyway, even through speakers. Im not sure how to go about fixing this, but have come to a comclusion we need a heaphone amp, but wont this cause alot of hiss being that I have to take away 20db off the music so he can hear his own voice, then boost it all with the headphone amp? How are things set up professionaly, what am I missing here? Thanks, Daniel.