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Mutes the Meat
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an entirely different set of questions about recording interfaces, and I didn't want to clutter up anyones thread.

If I am only recording guitar, and doing everything else in software, then is buying an interface still important?

How is using an interface better than using the line-in jack on my iMac, feeding it with my ADA MP-1?

In Drew's thread there was talk of interfaces with preamps and some without preamps. If my signal path is Guitar ---- > MP-1 (Preamp) ----> Interface, should I care about a preamp in the interface?

If I learn how to record, and produce and release an album before Drew, do I get a prize?
 

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Super Moderator
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preamps matter.

likely direct recording into your soundcard is going to sound like crap compared to going through a good analogue/digital conversion. If you are not recording for other people and don't care about how it sounds, by all means, don't buy an interface but there will be a very large difference between the two.
 

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Premium Member
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Like Kevin said, the signal quality will be pretty bad. Also, from my experience, a decent interface will have much lower latency.
 

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Mutes the Meat
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I have a PreSonus Inspire GT. If you're familiar with it, how does it compare to others? When I've messed with it I haven't been able to tell much of a difference between it and my iMac's line-in. I should give it another whirl, because it's been a while.

It has two firewire ports on the back, is there any reason for this other than daisy-chaining?
 

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Mutes the Meat
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I just fooled around with the Inspire again. I can tell the difference, and it's much harder to get this thing to clip.
 

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I just fooled around with the Inspire again. I can tell the difference, and it's much harder to get this thing to clip.
:agreed:

I used to record with a mic running into my computer's 1/8" mic in WAY back in the day. I was absolutely shocked at the difference when I went to a M-Audio Firewire 410. Forget clipping, everything is just fuller sounding.

A "preamp" in an interface isn't the same as a "preamp" youplug your guitar into. Your MP-1 is basically the front end of a guitar amp, designed to color the sound and overdrive. A interface preamp is basically a mic pre - designed to boost the input signal from whatever's coming out of the mic to something hot enough to record, ideally either 1.) without coloring it at all, or 2.) coloring it in musically pleasing ways. I suppose maybe it matters a little less when you're tracking direct from a guitar preamp where you can adjust the output from the unit to taste, but it's absolutely crucial when you start working with mics.

And not bloody likely. :fawk:

You might want to keep playing with those impulses - that still sounds awfully direct. Also, try a click track next time. ;)
 

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Mutes the Meat
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10,236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
:agreed:

I used to record with a mic running into my computer's 1/8" mic in WAY back in the day. I was absolutely shocked at the difference when I went to a M-Audio Firewire 410. Forget clipping, everything is just fuller sounding.

A "preamp" in an interface isn't the same as a "preamp" youplug your guitar into. Your MP-1 is basically the front end of a guitar amp, designed to color the sound and overdrive. A interface preamp is basically a mic pre - designed to boost the input signal from whatever's coming out of the mic to something hot enough to record, ideally either 1.) without coloring it at all, or 2.) coloring it in musically pleasing ways. I suppose maybe it matters a little less when you're tracking direct from a guitar preamp where you can adjust the output from the unit to taste, but it's absolutely crucial when you start working with mics.

And not bloody likely. :fawk:

You might want to keep playing with those impulses - that still sounds awfully direct. Also, try a click track next time. ;)
Yeah, it's not perfect by a long shot. Click tracks are my friend, but I haven't found out how to set one up in Garage Band. :) My natural rhythm is quite off without a drummer or metronome :lol:
 

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Mutes the Meat
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Fixed it, one of the tracks was just sloppy, the others were perfect :lol:
 

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Knives!
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427 Posts
I have an entirely different set of questions about recording interfaces, and I didn't want to clutter up anyones thread.

If I am only recording guitar, and doing everything else in software, then is buying an interface still important?

How is using an interface better than using the line-in jack on my iMac, feeding it with my ADA MP-1?

In Drew's thread there was talk of interfaces with preamps and some without preamps. If my signal path is Guitar ---- > MP-1 (Preamp) ----> Interface, should I care about a preamp in the interface?

If I learn how to record, and produce and release an album before Drew, do I get a prize?
If you want to get semi-serious about recording then yes an interface is important and in most cases it is essential.

Like other people have said, preamp quality and AD and DA conversion amongst others are vital to recapture the pure nature of the incoming signal.

Don't worry about the MP-1, the interface will have preamps. They will take the signal in completely dry (unless you put a TS between).
 

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Mutes the Meat
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10,236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
If you want to get semi-serious about recording then yes an interface is important and in most cases it is essential.

Like other people have said, preamp quality and AD and DA conversion amongst others are vital to recapture the pure nature of the incoming signal.

Don't worry about the MP-1, the interface will have preamps. They will take the signal in completely dry (unless you put a TS between).
Did you listen to my clip? Any tips on how I can get a fuller sound. I was using the "awesome" impulses from that link you posted in LAConvolver.
 

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Knives!
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427 Posts
In all honesty man. That sound is alright. What are you using as the amp simulator?

It needs context. Try adding some bass and a drum line to it as well! I find the best impulse in that batch is the s-preshigh one. It's the most popular but might be too dark for some people. Your midrange is cool, could do with a bit more but there's limitations with software amplifiers. I would check out simulators by LePou and Acmebar to see if there are any mac compatible ones. I'd turn down the gain a wee bit and maybe a smidgen of treble.

Also, record two tracks of the same part and 'pan' them both Left and Right. All the way to each side. I'm just about to look for the guide I partially wrote.
 

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Mutes the Meat
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10,236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
In all honesty man. That sound is alright. What are you using as the amp simulator?

It needs context. Try adding some bass and a drum line to it as well! I find the best impulse in that batch is the s-preshigh one. It's the most popular but might be too dark for some people. Your midrange is cool, could do with a bit more but there's limitations with software amplifiers. I would check out simulators by LePou and Acmebar to see if there are any mac compatible ones. I'd turn down the gain a wee bit and maybe a smidgen of treble.

Also, record two tracks of the same part and 'pan' them both Left and Right. All the way to each side. I'm just about to look for the guide I partially wrote.
Thanks man :) I'll take your tips into consideration. I didn't use an amp sim, that is my ADA MP-1 direct.
 

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Knives!
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427 Posts
A guitar preamp? If it's just an interface preamp that distortion is bamboozling me. Because there's nothing to emulate the gain of the amp.
 

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Mutes the Meat
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10,236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Dude :lol:

The ADA MP-1 was THE guitar preamp of the late 80s
 

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Knives!
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427 Posts
There you go! Guitar gear is not my strong point! Recording is. Still, I won't try and wriggle my way out of this one. Good thing I wasn't born in the 80's.
 

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Mutes the Meat
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10,236 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
This preamp was built in the same month and year that I was born :lol: February 1988.
 
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