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api lunchbox?

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by TheNightLife, Apr 29, 2010.


  1. hey guys im going into the studio again this coming week and im going to be plugging into an api lunchbox with a 205L Direct input. what are your opinions on the api setup? im ok with it but the last time i was there i wasnt really in love with it. how difficult is it to mic a cab setup for recording instead of plugging in direct? and which do you prefer for a pop punk rock band?

    http://www.myspace.com/thenightlifenj thats my band and our last recording is up on there awell.
     
  2. Jim C

    Jim C Is that what you meant to play or is this jazz? Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    Bethesda, MD
    Been years since I used them but I remember nice and warm but slow

    If it were me:
    * Always use a DI and prefer a Countryman
    * Also like to record a 2nd track through either a mic'd amp (not always practical due to time or space constraints) or a tube pre-amp (amp or outboard) or a dedicated EQ that is more adjustable than just a console EQ channel

    Do you have much time in the budget to spend on really perfecting EQ for tracking?
    In rush sessions, I like a clean DI, flat to tape, knowing that I can re-run it through either an amp or out board EQ during mixdown
     
  3. bongomania

    bongomania Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    ^^^ Excellent advice.
     

  4. weve got 8 days to record 2 tracks lol i dont know why but we do. it should only really take us 3 maybe 4 days to track everything and mix everything. we definitly have the time i just dont know what to say to our engineer
     
  5. bongomania

    bongomania Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    OK, then try this approach: tell him you want to record two tracks at the same time. One track will be a clean DI--the API is fine for this, or a Countryman, Radial, etc. The other track will be a miked bass amp/cab, if you have room--ideally an SVT or similarly ballsy and dirty-tone amp. He should know what you mean.

    If the miked amp/cab is out for whatever reason, then borrow a Sansamp VT or BDDI, and use that for your dirty channel. 90% of the time the engineer will find the right tone for the mix by blending the clean and dirty channels. If you or he wants more distortion, it is easy to "reamp", which is where you take a recorded instrument track and play it back through an amp, and mic the amp for the final recorded tone. So even if for some reason the engineer and the band don't want to give you two tracks, you can just record the clean track (using your amp as a personal monitor while you play) and let the engineer reamp and add EQ as needed to give you a tone that sits well in the mix.
     
  6. i already have my svt vr head there and my 810 cab there lol

    i really appreciate the advice im going to tell him the whole 2 track thing and see what he says
     
  7. Well remember the API luncbox is more of a format than a single piece of gear, you can get TONS of modules that plug directly into the lunchbox, which is essentially the caddy.

    The modules for them are normally pricey and generally very good, you're definitely talking hi end stuff for the most part. The 205l module is essentially a DI, or it has a high impedance input anyway. I haven't used it but I can't imagine its bad! However if its not the tone you are after you could certainly try another DI or two into another pre or two, and as the others have said combine it with an amp.

    8 days for 2 songs is not that excessive if you are going for something special. Its a pretty normal amount of time for a big album project where you would spend maybe 5 weeks recording 10 or so tracks then mix somewhere else at roughly a day a song. Even then this is a pretty tight schedule for some guys compared to the budgets you'd get 10 years ago!

    So 8 days for 2 songs is very healthy, you should allow a day per mix to start with, plus half a day for mix changes at the end. Give yourself a day setting up and getting a drum sound then that still gives you 5 days to get the best out of all the instruments in the band, not to mention performances. The engineer should be MORE than happy to DI and multi mic you with that sort of time available! You probably have time to experiment with the more quirky tactics of splitting the bass to a guitar amp or similar and getting a bit of character going alongside the bass tracks.

    On the longer sessions the experimentation you do is quite often rejected in the mix (gtr amps on bass, crazy room mics etc), but the one or two things that sound really great are the elements which give you THAT bass sound or THAT guitar sound and take the recordings from good to great!
     
  8. grue

    grue

    Apr 13, 2003
    Brooklyn, NY
    For punk rock, I wouldn't even consider recording without miking the cab. Maybe do a DI track to fatten up the low end, or to re-amp the part if you don't like the tone. But a vanilla DI sound isn't going to get you the tone you want for that kind of music. And sorry, I don't buy this attitude that some ProTools amp-sim plugin is going to sound just as good as a live SVT.
     
  9. well i actually tracked my bass lines for both songs today. my drummer went in yesterday at like 8am and did everything he had to do.

    i used a countryman di and the guy had a serious rack setup he used to color the tone. im actually really happy with the way it sounds thus far. ill keep everyone updated.
     
  10. so i got the mixes back a few minutes ago and i couldnt be happier. my bass sounds awesome and the tracks themselves sound amazing. thanks for the help guys
     
  11. fretno

    fretno Supporting Member

    May 10, 2009
    Los Angeles
    I still need to fill my lunchbox but IME both of these pre's sound great with my basses and mics .



    studio2.
     
  12. What sounds best on the track?
    You can always "re-amp". Or if you're running all digital, Logic/Pro-Tools, DP- there are a TON of amp plug-ins available.

    Pretty much every big budget recording has amp/effect plug-in running on guitars and/or bass at some point.

    Hell, people trust these crazy reverb plug-in on a singers voice, tell me that an amp plug in isn't good enough!
     
  13. he reamped it through an svt-vr with an 810 cab hooked up to it. it sounds phenominal. i just got the second version of the mixes back. the only thing that needs to be done know is turning my bass up a lil more in the mix and mastering the tracks
     
  14. Jim C

    Jim C Is that what you meant to play or is this jazz? Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    Bethesda, MD
    Congrats
    Sounds like great communication as well as talent between you and the engineer
    Hope the final mixes are great for you and the band
    If you get a minute, we'd love to hear them
     
  15. hey guys if any one would like to hear the mixes just shoot me a pm with your email adress and ill email the 2 songs to you. i hope you guys like them
     
  16. :eek: how does that shadow hills sound? I gas for a GAMMA 8!!!!!!!!
     
  17. fretno

    fretno Supporting Member

    May 10, 2009
    Los Angeles
    Most excellent , I really dig it , I also like the API alot , IMO both are top notch pre's
     
  18. nice!! 1st thing I do when I move my studio into a bigger place is get either an API 324+ or a GAMMA 8 (or both if I can :D)
     
  19. fretno

    fretno Supporting Member

    May 10, 2009
    Los Angeles
    That'll rock , I do wish the mono gama had the iron , I think I'll be fine though when I get a Avedis MA5 :D
     
  20. fretno

    fretno Supporting Member

    May 10, 2009
    Los Angeles
    went with a AML Carnhill , it's sweet on the bass !

    LB.
     

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