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  #11  
Old 01-13-2014, 12:55 PM
musicman691 musicman691 is online now
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Default Re: Audio level low

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Originally Posted by CraigForVoiceovers View Post
I did realize after my last post that a LOWER gain and a LOUDER voice would improve the acoustic S/N ration. Sorry about that.

All the cables are brand new (doesn't necessarily mean they aren't bad)

The recording area will be treated but for now we're just working on getting proper signals to ProTools. My friend has a very awkward setup but we have to do the best with her limited resources. It's a Manhattan apartment...enough said.

There is no input pad switch on this Mbox. The inputs are the XLR/TRS combos so When an XLR cable is connected it operates at mic level and when a TRS cable is used, it operates at line level. So that's not an issue. I'm using an XLR cable from the mic to the Mbox.
But in your last post here you mentioned having a problem with acoustic noise getting into the mic and seemed to be confusing that with electrical noise versus signal. Get the sE Reflexion filter and that will go a long way to helping with the acoustic noise problems until your girlfriend's apartment can be properly treated.
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  #12  
Old 01-13-2014, 12:58 PM
CraigForVoiceovers CraigForVoiceovers is offline
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Default Re: Audio level low

Dave, or should I say, Dave.

The signal may be ok as is but I always feel whenever one has to boost the gain to max to get the signal to that level, something's wrong. If I had a less sensitive mic, the signal probably wouldn't be in the yellow when the gain is at max. So, I may in fact have a perfectly good signal, but I was questioning the need to have the gain at max. There is a step down switch on the mbox but of course, that would take AWAY from the signal but other than the gain knob, there's no other way to increase the gain on the mbox.

I didn't have a way to listen back to the audio yesterday (missing a couple of adapters) but will today. Hopefully the sound will be fine but I'll always be bothered by the fact that the gain has to be at max. (Maybe they make a new Mbox whose gain knob goes to 11...said with a British accent of course)
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  #13  
Old 01-13-2014, 01:03 PM
musicman691 musicman691 is online now
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Default Re: Audio level low

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Originally Posted by CraigForVoiceovers View Post
Dave, or should I say, Dave.

The signal may be ok as is but I always feel whenever one has to boost the gain to max to get the signal to that level, something's wrong. If I had a less sensitive mic, the signal probably wouldn't be in the yellow when the gain is at max. So, I may in fact have a perfectly good signal, but I was questioning the need to have the gain at max. There is a step down switch on the mbox but of course, that would take AWAY from the signal but other than the gain knob, there's no other way to increase the gain on the mbox.

I didn't have a way to listen back to the audio yesterday (missing a couple of adapters) but will today. Hopefully the sound will be fine but I'll always be bothered by the fact that the gain has to be at max. (Maybe they make a new Mbox whose gain knob goes to 11...said with a British accent of course)
I wouldn't worry about having the gain at the max as that won't hurt anything. Like I've been saying as long as you're getting a clean signal that's all that counts. Worry more about the acoustic noise getting into the mic and not electronic noise as most electronics today are cleaner than even the best of old electronics (tubes and tape where signal to noise ratio really mattered). Trust me I'm an EE so I know what I'm talking about.
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  #14  
Old 01-13-2014, 01:24 PM
CraigForVoiceovers CraigForVoiceovers is offline
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Default Re: Audio level low

Thanks Jack. I will heed your advice.
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  #15  
Old 01-13-2014, 02:30 PM
albee1952 albee1952 is offline
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Default Re: Audio level low

Hmmm...gain all the way up?! Yes, that does sound a bit suspect. What mic? Not sure about the RE27, but some dynamic mics like an SM-7 need a lot of gain, so maybe the solution is a good channel strip(external preamp with EQ and/or compression). Aphex has one I have not used(also Presonus) in the $500-600 price range. Then there's one of my favs, the UA LA-610(more money, but lots of "tube" goodness)
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  #16  
Old 01-13-2014, 06:03 PM
musicman691 musicman691 is online now
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Default Re: Audio level low

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Originally Posted by albee1952 View Post
Hmmm...gain all the way up?! Yes, that does sound a bit suspect. What mic? Not sure about the RE27, but some dynamic mics like an SM-7 need a lot of gain, so maybe the solution is a good channel strip(external preamp with EQ and/or compression). Aphex has one I have not used(also Presonus) in the $500-600 price range. Then there's one of my favs, the UA LA-610(more money, but lots of "tube" goodness)
RE27 is the little brother of the RE20 which in my experience needs as much gain as possible. One thing though he talks about acoustic noise in his recording space (his girlfriend's apartment) and until he fixes that a preamp won't help much and would even make things worse.
If he wants UA quality and tube goodness but can't swing the bucks for the LA-610 I'd suggest the Solo 610; I have one and it does quite well, with everything I have (Neumann TLM103, AKGC414, various guitars as a warm di and it loves my Fender Jazz Bass).
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  #17  
Old 01-14-2014, 06:32 AM
CraigForVoiceovers CraigForVoiceovers is offline
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Default Re: Audio level low

I agree Jack. Once we get the space treated it will be easier to deal with the signal issue. I did some recording yesterday with the gain on the Mbox all the way up (to 10, not 11 and the Protools level is very low even though I see a bit of yellow in the meter at times. I had to amplify the level a LOT just to bring the recording up to -3db. I realize that if in doing that I still have a clean recording and the noise floor is acceptably low, it doesn't matter except that it's a bit of an annoyance to have to go through that step every time of bringing up the level post recording.

So, yes, Jack even though the only thing that matters is getting a clean recording out of it, it still baffles me that IF everything is normal, why Electrovoice would make a mic that puts out such a low level or why the preamp in the Mbox would have such a limited range. That model mic is a VERY popular broadcast mic.

And having to spend money on another pre-amp when the Mbox is supposed to have an acceptable one built in is a real drag.
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  #18  
Old 01-14-2014, 07:33 AM
nst7 nst7 is offline
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Default Re: Audio level low

Just to test out some of what has been talked about, it may be helpful if you could borrow a different mic from someone to test it with the Mbox and see if it has the same issues. If not, then you'll know it appears to be just this mic.

Also, this may be obvious, but I assume you have selected the button on the front of the unit (for that channel) to on "rear"? You probably have, because I don't know if you'd even get a signal otherwise, but I just thought I'd mention it.
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  #19  
Old 01-14-2014, 07:48 AM
musicman691 musicman691 is online now
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Default Re: Audio level low

Quote:
Originally Posted by CraigForVoiceovers View Post
I agree Jack. Once we get the space treated it will be easier to deal with the signal issue. I did some recording yesterday with the gain on the Mbox all the way up (to 10, not 11 and the Protools level is very low even though I see a bit of yellow in the meter at times. I had to amplify the level a LOT just to bring the recording up to -3db. I realize that if in doing that I still have a clean recording and the noise floor is acceptably low, it doesn't matter except that it's a bit of an annoyance to have to go through that step every time of bringing up the level post recording.

So, yes, Jack even though the only thing that matters is getting a clean recording out of it, it still baffles me that IF everything is normal, why Electrovoice would make a mic that puts out such a low level or why the preamp in the Mbox would have such a limited range. That model mic is a VERY popular broadcast mic.

And having to spend money on another pre-amp when the Mbox is supposed to have an acceptable one built in is a real drag.
The actual level you're getting (I have no idea where you're measuring that -3dB level) is irrelevant as long as it's clean. Stop worrying about it.

As far as EV putting out a mic with such a low level it's part of the design and ask them why they did what they did. Some mics just have low output levels. I mean look at ribbon mics - unless they have an internal preamp they have even lower output levels then the EV27 and need a real high gain preamp.

The studios that use an RE20 (the bigger brother that broadcast studios use) also have preamps to match the levels put out. It's a matter of matching the mic to the preamp and it just so happens you have a combo that apparently is gain challenged but still gives a clean signal. And as far as the Mbox being an acceptable again you have to understand that not every piece of equipment is going to work with every other piece of equipment due to various requirements. Like ribbon mics needing high gain but not phantom power, some mics needing to see specific impedances in the preamp, etc.
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  #20  
Old 01-14-2014, 08:01 AM
Bookerv12 Bookerv12 is offline
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Default Re: Audio level low

In CFO's defense,
The 27 is actually a much higher output mic than the 20.
That being said, it is still a moving coil dynamic, and in the grand scheme of things, may need a little more juice.
I think what he is seeing is probably normal.
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