I am fairly new to the world of recording and on the advice of others bought a Presonus AudioBox (the alternative being a Focusrite 2i4). It came bundled with a DAW and is great for what I want to do which is You Tube video performances.
The downside is I cannot seem to bypass the preamp and though I get a phenomenal, ungodly guitar tone, where slides down the bottom E sound like the end of the world, the mids and trebles are all but EQ'ed out (and I'm not into the 'scooped mids on a Dual Rectifier' tone).
This means that though I can play rhythm and lead on just one channel in my practice room, the leads do not cut through on recording. I even adjusted my amp EQ to counter but it's still too overbearing. You may say change channel for lead but even pinched harmonics are buried in the mix and you wouldn't change to a lead channel just for them. Ad what this means is I have to spend a lot of time in post, cutting lead segments and licks out of the track and placing them on a new track with independent EQ. And this is a ball-ache as notes on the higher strings are lower in the mix than those on the lower strings so I'm screwed if I ever run across more than 3 strings at a time.
The funny thing is, when I listen to my recordings through the inbuilt laptop speakers, the leads and the harmonics cut through loud and clear because the speakers are very tinny and bass-less.
Is there a way to bypass the preamp? Or if not, can you recommend an I/O under £150 ($200) that doesn't colour the tone like the Presonus does?
Welcome to the world of recording dude! Unfortunately bypassing the preamp means there is literally no way to amplify the tiny signal coming from your mic or direct from your output of the guitar product to a level that the AD converters in the box can use. The tone you hear in the room is always going to be different to what you hear on your recording. There is a lot that goes into translating that ungodly tone to a track.
Firstly, what mic do you use and what monitors are you running? Also, where a bouts are you placing the mic relative to the speaker?
Also as far as something that doesn't colour the tone, you WANT tone coloration from your press, mics and dynamics (comps and eq's) because they all add to it. The only part you want flat response from generally is the monitors and AD/DA converters.
[VIDEO]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9WLhv0rId5k]Recording Metal Guitars at Home - Ola Englund - YouTube[/VIDEO]
[VIDEO]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=maA1wGBX7ag]Miking a Guitar Amp for Metal - The Ola way - YouTube[/VIDEO]
These two videos offer the most basic of fundamentals to recording guitars. There is a lot more that can go into it but Ola is the man when it comes to cutting straight to the point and enabling even the most green of user to get a useable tone.