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Recording bass for a beginner

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by Calzonge, May 17, 2019.

  1. Focusrite is good. I have the 2i2 as well, and it's good. Easy monitoring and easy to use. I do not like the software (Pro Tools) that comes with it. It took 24 hours to download and comprised 3gb. The front end is too much for me and I find it clunky (though that may well be me not giving enough of a damn to learn how to use it). I use Reaper, which costs $60, is immeasurably smaller and just works. Audacity is fine, but Reaper works better. And yes, I realise OP is talking about garage band.
  2. Ampslut


    May 15, 2017
  3. Calzonge


    Jul 30, 2016
    I didn't even think about the whole playing together or seperately thing, so thanks for bringing that up. I'll give it some thought.

    And since she's gonna handle the engineering part I probably won't need any software myself, but I will definitely check out that article.
  4. Sparkl


    Apr 23, 2011
    Well there is a notable difference in how the bass sounds when I switch between my scarlet 8i6, lexicon alpha and my tascam us20x20.

    The 8i6 offers the warmest sound, tascam is a bit neutral sounding and lexicon alpha sounds quite sharper in the upper range.
  5. WebJunk


    Oct 19, 2015
    That has nothing to do with the mic preamp because on all those interfaces if you are using a 1/4" connector the preamp is bypassed. There is something else going on and yes when you start spending more money above the level being discussed here just for adding bass there are improvements in circuitry and sampling rate. As far as noticeable differences there is something else going on. There should not natively between those interfaces be such a difference on an instrument input.
    Most people will never notice any difference especially when in a complete mix. Bruce Springsteen famously recorded his album Nebraska on a Tascam cassette portastudio using SM57's and it still considered an excellent sounding album. Today you would be surprised how many albums & tracks were recorded on inexpensive interfaces.
  6. AGCurry

    AGCurry Supporting Member

    Jun 29, 2005
    St. Louis
    Not exactly. The Focusrite products, as well as other similar products from various makers, have Neutrik connectors which will accept an XLR plug or a 1/4" phone plug (guitar cable), and a preamp is in the circuit unless you bypass it.

    From the Scarlett 2i2 manual:
    "The front panel input sockets are Neutrik Comboº, which accept either an XLR male connector (you will probably have one on the end of your microphone cable) or a ¼” (6.35 mm) jack plug. Note the Scarlett 2i2 has no “Mic/line” switch – the Focusrite preamplifier stage is automatically configured for a microphone when you plug an XLR into the input, and for a line or instrument when you connect a jack plug. Set the LINE/INST switch next to the socket to INST if you are connecting a musical instrument (a guitar in the example) via an ordinary 2-pole (TS) guitar jack, or to LINE if you are connecting a line level source such as the balanced output of a stage piano via a 3-pole (TRS) jack. Note the Combo connector accepts both TRS and TS types of jack plug."
  7. WebJunk


    Oct 19, 2015
    Yes Exactly!
    automatically configured for a microphone when you plug an XLR into the input, and for a line or instrument when you connect a jack plug.
    That is telling you when you use plug in an XLR: Microphone preamp
    Bypassing the preamp when connecting a 1/4" jack plug.
    The Line/Inst switch is simply for TRS/balanced or TS/unbalanced

    Thank You for proving me correct.
  8. AGCurry

    AGCurry Supporting Member

    Jun 29, 2005
    St. Louis
    Sorry, but no ... the preamplifier is still involved unless you move the switch to "LINE." An electric guitar or bass guitar needs a preamp. A line input does not provide enough gain for those instruments. The electronic characteristics of a mic preamp and a guitar preamp are different, but it is a preamp regardless.
  9. WebJunk


    Oct 19, 2015
    Ok. Evidently you do not want to believe the manual you yourself posted.
    Would you settle for Focusrite's own Support Page? (google works!)
    My microphone is not working when connected to the 1/4" jack input

    Applies to: All products

    Microphones must be connected to an XLR input using an XLR cable rather than a 1/4" jack input.

    The XLR input passes the signal through the microphone preamp part of the interface, the 1/4" jack input does not.
  10. guts


    Aug 13, 2018
    I wouldn't worry about it. You're never going to notice the difference in sound of one preamp to another unless you A/B them. It's not important at all.

    Just get the interface that has the features you need at the budget you have and don't think about what it does to your sound. It doesn't matter.
  11. AGCurry

    AGCurry Supporting Member

    Jun 29, 2005
    St. Louis
    "...passes the signal through the microphone preamp part of the interface..."
    Why did the Focusrite Help Centre need the word "microphone?"

    And - again - from the manual:

    "... automatically configured for a line or instrument ..."
    Why not just "line?"

    Because there are three options: microphone, line, or instrument. The "line" option is the only one not using a preamp.

    If the only options were XLR=microphone and 1/4"=LINE, then the "LINE/INST" switch would not be needed; the circuitry would simply discover which type of plug is being used and behave accordingly. That switch is not there to designate whether the plug is TS or TRS - the circuitry can do that. The switch is there to take the instrument preamp in or out of the circuit.

    A big selling point of this and similar interfaces is that they allow you to plug your guitar right into them. As I stated before, a LINE input does not provide sufficient gain for an electric guitar. And line sources will overload the inputs on guitar amps, because guitar amps have PREAMPLIFIERs built in.

    From Line level, instrument level, mic level explained:

    "+4 dBu is "professional" line level, common in modern pro recording gear, and it is about 1.25 V.
    0 dBv is an average line level, typical output from rackmount guitar/bass preamps.
    -10 dBv is "consumer" line level, common with older and cheaper recording gear.
    -20 dBu is roughly in the neighborhood of a typical instrument's output.
    -30 dBu is again in the neighborhood of a typical microphone or DI box's output."

    The only reason I'm engaging in this argument, which I've tried to keep courteous, is that this is an important thing to understand in this context.
    Nevada Pete likes this.
  12. WebJunk


    Oct 19, 2015
    Yes it is important to understand.
    Do not keep it courteous on my account :cool:

    Not sure why you are completely ignoring what Focusrite explicitly states:
    The XLR input passes the signal through the microphone preamp part of the interface, the 1/4" jack input does not.

    Maybe what you should be doing is calling Focusrite and tell them they are wrong about their own product! :laugh:
  13. AGCurry

    AGCurry Supporting Member

    Jun 29, 2005
    St. Louis
    I didn't ignore what Focusrite stated - I read it more carefully than you - but you ignored what I wrote about it. I give up.
  14. Well, while I think many of the recent posts go into waaaay more detail than the OP was looking for, this thread answered the basic questions I had with respect to first time recording my bass to Garage band with my new FocusRite.
    Thanks. Now I can work via email with my bandmates that go back to the states or Canada for 6 months of the year.
    RyanOh likes this.
  15. Badwater


    Jan 12, 2017
    Looks like your GF has the tools for the recording, mixing, and production. A interface might help, but talk to your GF to see what she recommends for the recording.

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