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  #1  
Old 08-24-2010, 12:30 PM
xesands xesands is offline
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Default Aux Input vs. Mic 1/Analog 1 Input (when using external preamp)

Hi there! Still finding my feet with respect to my very simple set-up.

Issue: Recording levels are too low when external preamp (Presonus Eureka) is connected to Mbox2 Pro via the Aux input (analog 3 in Pro Tools). The absolute highest peak level I can get, even with mic pre gain cranked to maximum, is about -7db. This is too low for the publishers I work with. When the Eureka is connected to the Mbox2 Pro via the Mic1 input, the recording levels are nice and high, BUT there is a TON of noise floor (around -48db).

Background: I am an audiobook narrator - so it's just me and my voice. I'm a quiet reader to begin with, so the recording levels need to be nice and high.

Current set-up:
AT4050 large diaphragm condenser ---> Presonus Eureka Channel Strip ---> Mbox2 Pro (via Aux input/analog 3 - with all Mbox2 settings at their lowest) ---> Macbook Pro running Snow Leopard and Pro Tools LE 8.

Do I have this hooked up incorrectly? I just can't figure out why the aux inputs would be giving such reduced recording levels...nice not to get the noise floor I get when plugging int through the Mic1 input, but seriously? I must be doing something wrong here...

Any help would be appreciated...looked through the forums but couldn't find quite the same situation...but if you know of a thread, feel free to redirect me!

Thanks!
Xe
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  #2  
Old 08-25-2010, 03:55 AM
deltasigma deltasigma is offline
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Default Re: Aux Input vs. Mic 1/Analog 1 Input (when using external preamp)

Have you tried coming out of the 'TRS output' on the presonus and in to the 'Line input 1' on the mBox2.

This does mean using two pres though

It looks like the aux input is just another line in with its own preamp (or is the preamp on this input only a phono stage?? Am not 100% sure?)

I know it is an obvious one but is the 'pad' switch set to '0' on the mic?

D
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  #3  
Old 08-25-2010, 08:54 AM
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albee1952 albee1952 is offline
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Default Re: Aux Input vs. Mic 1/Analog 1 Input (when using external preamp)

One opinion only, but I would be comfortable recording at -7 to -12(which is recommended for digital anyway) and boost the level of the track before handing it off to your publishers. This might be the only time I would actually use Normalize. Highlight the track and go to the Audiosuite plugins, pull up the Normalize plugin, set to 98% and process. Of course, a good mastering limiter might be an even better choice here.
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Old 08-25-2010, 09:14 AM
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Park Seward Park Seward is offline
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Default Re: Aux Input vs. Mic 1/Analog 1 Input (when using external preamp)

Quote:
Originally Posted by xesands View Post
Hi there! Still finding my feet with respect to my very simple set-up.

Issue: Recording levels are too low when external preamp (Presonus Eureka) is connected to Mbox2 Pro via the Aux input (analog 3 in Pro Tools). The absolute highest peak level I can get, even with mic pre gain cranked to maximum, is about -7db. This is too low for the publishers I work with. When the Eureka is connected to the Mbox2 Pro via the Mic1 input, the recording levels are nice and high, BUT there is a TON of noise floor (around -48db).

Background: I am an audiobook narrator - so it's just me and my voice. I'm a quiet reader to begin with, so the recording levels need to be nice and high.

Current set-up:
AT4050 large diaphragm condenser ---> Presonus Eureka Channel Strip ---> Mbox2 Pro (via Aux input/analog 3 - with all Mbox2 settings at their lowest) ---> Macbook Pro running Snow Leopard and Pro Tools LE 8.

Thanks!
Xe
Some things to check...

The channel strip has a compressor. Bypass it and see if the levels improve. If so, you need to correctly adjust your compressor.

Make sure you are plugged into the mic input and not the line input on the strip.

You don't want to plug the strip into the mic input of the Mbox but you know that.

"the recording levels need to be nice and high."

What is "nice" about "high". My operating levels are -18. Record low and let the final engineer adjust levels were they want them. Trying to get a voice to max out is just silly.If you need, record your voice and them add a compressor and limiter and put the final gain where you want it. Don't try to record so hot.
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  #5  
Old 08-25-2010, 01:40 PM
xesands xesands is offline
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Default Re: Aux Input vs. Mic 1/Analog 1 Input (when using external preamp)

Thanks for the suggestions/questions, all! Sorry for the delay in responding.

@ deltasigma: yes, I have tried going TRS to TRS (via patch cable). Might try again, just to be sure on levels, though.

@ albee1952 and Park Seward: I would normally agree! I hate having it pushed to between 0 and -1. However, the publisher I am recording for remotely said -7 was just too low - he wants it higher.

@ Park Seward:

I'll do a test bypassing the compressor tonight, but think I have already tried that. I do need to use the compressor, so hope it's not that - LOL!

As for plugging into the mic input on the Eureka, no other way for me to plug in my mic BUT through the mic input, as I only have an XLR - XLR cable

The basic question remains: why won't the Eureka give up more than -7db peak levels? I mean, the thing is cranked as high as it will go - this just doesn't make sense. And if I crank it so high, he noise floor comes up too, of course...so the amount of "hiss/white noise" is obnoxious.

Hey - any thoughts on whether or not adding the AD192 digital I/O card to the Eureka would help? Then I could bypass the Mbox2 Pro preamps and converters entirely, I think...
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  #6  
Old 08-25-2010, 05:01 PM
Numi Numi is offline
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Default Re: Aux Input vs. Mic 1/Analog 1 Input (when using external preamp)

The card is a great idea! I use it to connect to the spdif on my mbox2pro with great clarity and gain.

I run from the Xlr to trs into the line input works fine as well.

I found that the digital card works best. It also opens you up to two more inputs. You can plug another channel strip of any kind really(I have a art tub mp for DI bass guitars) and use the right spdif channel ar the same time with all other mbox channels and the left spdif all at once.

This gives you many more options and sounds great. I can set the master output of the eureka at 0db and the input to a reasonable level with no problems like this.

Hope this helps and you will soon start to hear the difference in quality between the mbox preamps and the eureka right away(mbox sound poor IMHO ).
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  #7  
Old 08-25-2010, 09:34 PM
xesands xesands is offline
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Default Re: Aux Input vs. Mic 1/Analog 1 Input (when using external preamp)

Rock on, Numi! That's exactly the feedback on the card I was looking for! I've found many threads here there and everywhere that feature people asking about the card, but no one had written in saying that they thought it made a difference. I will be ordering one tonight.

Thanks!
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  #8  
Old 08-26-2010, 09:27 AM
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albee1952 albee1952 is offline
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Default Re: Aux Input vs. Mic 1/Analog 1 Input (when using external preamp)

@ albee1952 and Park Seward: I would normally agree! I hate having it pushed to between 0 and -1. However, the publisher I am recording for remotely said -7 was just too low - he wants it higher. He needs to learn how to adjust the levels AFTER recording. No engineer expects the recording to be finished at the end of a pass.

@ Park Seward:

I'll do a test bypassing the compressor tonight, but think I have already tried that. I do need to use the compressor, so hope it's not that - LOL! Maybe you just need to turn UP the output level of the compressor section

As for plugging into the mic input on the Eureka, no other way for me to plug in my mic BUT through the mic input, as I only have an XLR - XLR cable Yes, XLR-XLR for the microphone. TRS going into the Mbox.



Hey - any thoughts on whether or not adding the AD192 digital I/O card to the Eureka would help? Then I could bypass the Mbox2 Pro preamps and converters entirely, I think...[/QUOTE] SPDIF into the Mbox should work great...BUT, you will no longer have any level control ON THE MBOX(which may well be fine) and the MIX knob will not work on SPDIF, so you will be monitoring from PT(set your buffer to 128 to avoid latency echo).
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