Audio interface and mic for male vocals

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Re: Audio interface and mic for male vocals

Post by ef37a »

There is of course a 'chicken and egg' situation here. You cannot know how good or bad* your room is until you produce some 'quality' sound in it, that is why I suggest the purchase of some really good speakers should be very high on the agenda.

I also suggest early on buying or making some proper stands for the speakers. The temptation is to balance them on a desk, always meaning to do a proper job that never gets done! I am fortunate to have two CD cabinets (in pine effect chipboard) that are 0.84mtr high, have 5, 170mm 'holes' in them for CDs and have a board about 250mm sq top and bottom. These hold my Tannoy 5As at just about ear high for the tweeters. I am sure such cabinets are still around?

*There are no good, small domestic rooms but some are REALLY bad!

https://www.amazon.co.uk/HOMCOM-Adjusta ... 91&sr=8-12
That ^ sort of thing but you'd have to fit a top and bottom.

Dave.
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Re: Audio interface and mic for male vocals

Post by Mike Stranks »

ef37a wrote: Mon Aug 08, 2022 9:51 am There is of course a 'chicken and egg' situation here. You cannot know how good or bad* your room is until you produce some 'quality' sound in it, that is why I suggest the purchase of some really good speakers should be very high on the agenda.

IME there are very, very few good (or even acceptable) domestic rooms without some form of treatment.

Sort out the chickens... then worry about the eggs! :)
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Re: Audio interface and mic for male vocals

Post by ef37a »

Mike Stranks wrote: Mon Aug 08, 2022 11:25 am
ef37a wrote: Mon Aug 08, 2022 9:51 am There is of course a 'chicken and egg' situation here. You cannot know how good or bad* your room is until you produce some 'quality' sound in it, that is why I suggest the purchase of some really good speakers should be very high on the agenda.

IME there are very, very few good (or even acceptable) domestic rooms without some form of treatment.

Sort out the chickens... then worry about the eggs! :)

You may have misunderstood me Mike? I am saying get some first class monitors and then you have a first class sound source with which to sort the room. I am sure there are many here who can suggest/donate suitable tracks.

Dave.
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Re: Audio interface and mic for male vocals

Post by Kwackman »

I'm with Mike in the chicken/egg order.
Even a few duvets will help whether you have modest or amazing monitors.
Only an opinion- I am not a professional studio builder!
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Re: Audio interface and mic for male vocals

Post by James Perrett »

I'd say that basic room treatment and correct monitor positioning are going to make a huge difference. The first you can do before you buy anything else but the second probably needs at least some kind of monitors so that you can experiment with positioning. I've found that raising my monitors up to about 350mm above my desk has massively improved the sound - probably because the desk reflections play less of a part in the sound.
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Re: Audio interface and mic for male vocals

Post by ef37a »

James Perrett wrote: Mon Aug 08, 2022 2:04 pm I'd say that basic room treatment and correct monitor positioning are going to make a huge difference. The first you can do before you buy anything else but the second probably needs at least some kind of monitors so that you can experiment with positioning. I've found that raising my monitors up to about 350mm above my desk has massively improved the sound - probably because the desk reflections play less of a part in the sound.

Ah! I think you are closer to my wavelength James. OP will need an interface to drive the monitors but little else other than some well recorded tracks. He can then start to deal with poor imaging and lumpy bass.

Of course! He should spend several evenings on 'Studio SOS' back articles.

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Re: Audio interface and mic for male vocals

Post by Doveman »

blinddrew wrote: Sun Aug 07, 2022 9:24 pm When I auditioned a few things a couple of years ago the KH80 were, to my ears, the best in the price range.

I think I'll have to try to find somewhere that I can audition them and compare them to the Focal Alpha Evo 65s.
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Re: Audio interface and mic for male vocals

Post by James Perrett »

ef37a wrote: Mon Aug 08, 2022 2:11 pm Ah! I think you are closer to my wavelength James.

I'd still say that mirror point panels and corner bass traps can safely be built without any monitors as they're always needed. However, if you can mount them in such a way that you can still move them around it would help when fine tuning the treatment with the monitors.
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Re: Audio interface and mic for male vocals

Post by ef37a »

Doveman wrote: Mon Aug 08, 2022 2:20 pm
blinddrew wrote: Sun Aug 07, 2022 9:24 pm When I auditioned a few things a couple of years ago the KH80 were, to my ears, the best in the price range.

I think I'll have to try to find somewhere that I can audition them and compare them to the Focal Alpha Evo 65s.

With the greatest respect Doveman, unless you have great experience in such matters I would not bother. I am pretty sure the Top Chaps here. Hugh, Drew, Sam et al will agree with me when I say that monitors in that class are very similar and none are 'wrong' or 'right'.

My hearing is shot so if Hugh or Phil tells me "this monitor sounds great!" I believe them and would be sure I was getting a truly useful 'tool'.

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Re: Audio interface and mic for male vocals

Post by Doveman »

Bob Bickerton wrote: Sun Aug 07, 2022 9:55 pm I’ve been following this thread and the above reply rang alarm bells for me.

If you’re recording vocals in an untreated room you’ll have a significant problem! Room treatment really needs to be near the top of your ‘purchase list’.

I was just agreeing with Dave that it probably makes more sense to get monitors that are excellent for vocal work, rather than getting ones that are better with the lower frequencies, which will either have poorer mids or be much more expensive, and then spending thousands trying to treat a domestic room to make it work OK with deep bass. I wasn't suggesting that the room won't need any treatment to be able to do vocal work, just that it will be a lot cheaper.

At the beginning of the thread you were also looking at a vocal microphone. I don’t know if it was covered earlier, but the quality of the interface pales into insignificance relative to microphone choice and room treatment. Did you buy the Aston?

I haven't bought the Aston yet. I've also been looking at other mics like the Shure SM7B and the AKG C214 but I haven't decided yet.

Regarding interface I’ve never had a problem with latency and it’s a good idea not to commit any effects on your (self-recorded) vocals on the way in - so probably all you need is some comfort reverb for tracking and I’d have thought most interfaces would offer that with minimal penalty.

Yeah, I wouldn't commit any effects but a bit of reverb, maybe some compression, helps and I think they need to be DSP effects to avoid any noticeable latency.

Regarding interfaces, I’m a UAD Apollo user and, as said above, I only use reverb for monitoring. No problems there, but I do have a range of vocal mics and professionally designed room treatment. I also happily use an SSL 2 or MixPre 10 as an interface. If I was buying new I’d consider RME based on the very good comments around here, but I doubt anyone listening to my projects would notice the difference as to which interface I used! The point regarding UAD plugs-ins is worthy of repeating. I enjoy them very much, but there are now many good alternatives.


I was originally considering a UAD interface but I crossed them off when they abandoned the USB interface and went Firewire only. They have DSP effects of course, which the much cheaper SSL 2 doesn't. I'll probably just pre-order the Babyface Pro FS, as I've found somewhere that says it should have stock by August 19.
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Re: Audio interface and mic for male vocals

Post by James Perrett »

ef37a wrote: Mon Aug 08, 2022 2:35 pm
Doveman wrote: Mon Aug 08, 2022 2:20 pm
blinddrew wrote: Sun Aug 07, 2022 9:24 pm When I auditioned a few things a couple of years ago the KH80 were, to my ears, the best in the price range.

I think I'll have to try to find somewhere that I can audition them and compare them to the Focal Alpha Evo 65s.

With the greatest respect Doveman, unless you have great experience in such matters I would not bother. I am pretty sure the Top Chaps here. Hugh, Drew, Sam et al will agree with me when I say that monitors in that class are very similar and none are 'wrong' or 'right'.

I wouldn't necessarily agree with that Dave - different monitors will always have different strengths and weaknesses. Which one you prefer is a matter of taste. I like to have totally lucid stereo imaging which is something that other people may forgo in order to obtain a flatter frequency response.

And some people still think of NS10s as monitors which sound nothing like a typical uncoloured monitor.
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Re: Audio interface and mic for male vocals

Post by Bob Bickerton »

Doveman wrote: Mon Aug 08, 2022 2:38 pm I was originally considering a UAD interface but I crossed them off when they abandoned the USB interface and went Firewire only. They have DSP effects of course, which the much cheaper SSL 2 doesn't. I'll probably just pre-order the Babyface Pro FS, as I've found somewhere that says it should have stock by August 19.

Just a correction - UAD interfaces are currently USB or Thunderbolt - not FireWire. https://www.uaudio.com/audio-interfaces.html

The Apollo range have the built in DSP for low latency monitoring with plug-ins. The Apollo Solo is currently 400 quid in the UK.

Bob
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