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DI Box For Recording - A MUST?

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by Hekbass, May 25, 2011.


  1. Hekbass

    Hekbass

    May 21, 2005
    Zephyrhills, FL
    A few days ago, I had the first studio session to record my original songs. It's a home studio run by a father and son "team."

    I'm extremely unfamiliar with recording technology. I've read articles on Bass Player magazine and others, though, so I have some general bits of knowledge on the matter.

    The guy tried running a regular instrument cable from the "line out" of the amp into the board. My bass (Traben Havoc) has a preamp with 2 9-volt batteries, so it was clipping the input level at the board.
    I suggested to use the XLR output instead. That worked.
    The recorded sound was pretty damn good to my ears.

    THE QUESTION: Should I get a DI box? How much of a difference will that $150-200+ expense ACTUALLY have on my sound?
    I'm not an audiophile. If it's something that only pro studio engineers, and musicians with "dog ears" or "audiophile ears" will notice, then I don't care.

    Your input will be truly appreciated.
     
  2. If you have an XLR out from your amp, it has a DI in it.
     
  3. And to expand...

    Some amps have great DIs. My SWR Bass 350 has a DI that rivals my Avalon U5 ($500 DI). Some are not so great. If you think it sounds good, cool.

    Real studios will have at least a couple of DIs. I have a project studio, and I have three.
     
  4. I would say yes, I do a fair amount of studio work and always take a DI as part of my kit. Most studios will have several, often nicer than you can afford.
    As agreatheight stated some amps have great DI's but that is not always the case. There are a lot of expensive DI's out there but a good passive DI or even an ART Tube MP are very affordable and do a good job.
     
  5. markjazzbassist

    markjazzbassist Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Cleveland, OH
    yes

    for pro level but cheap get a Radial JDI
    for pro level colored tone tube get an A Designs REDDI

    you'll be set with those 2.
     
  6. Hekbass

    Hekbass

    May 21, 2005
    Zephyrhills, FL
    Thanks, guys!

    They have a huge Carvin rig. It's the 1500 head paired with a 2X10 and 1X15 cabs.

    Carvin.com :: BX1500

    I think that, as agreatheight said, the XLR output on an amp like this might be functioning as a DI. Again, the sound was fine. No complaints.

    So, as my budget is limited, I think I'm gonna stick with that set up for now.

    Thanks again!
     
  7. Yes, the XLR IS a DI. That is what it is there for.

    Now, you'll have to determine whether you run it pre-EQ or post-EQ. Pre-EQ is almost always the better option, but there will be times where you may want to go post.

    Also, consider that having a dedicated DI means you don't always have to drag the amp to places (like a studio) where you don't necessarily need it. I've played some venues that don't allow amps on-stage anyway, so it happens. Other times I don't bother with my amp because I know it'll be more hassle than it's worth for the particular venue/gig/situation. I pick from a stable of DIs, depending on my needs, and grab a bass and go.
     
  8. johnboy65

    johnboy65

    May 22, 2009
    not what I'd call huge...

    Way to ask everyones opinion and completely disregard it.
     

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