"Then she looks up at the building
And says she's thinkin' of jumping. she says
She's tired of life, she must be tired of something."

Author Topic: Experiencing a weird issue with recording  (Read 755 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline SandHog

Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Opened on December 05, 2018, 12:14:48 AM »

So I picked up a cheap mic because recording on the cell phone, uploading the recording and downloading it again is kind of a pain in the butt. Anyway, I'm placing the mic in front of my amp and recording it into the computer via Audacity. I'm getting this weird oscillating effect from somewhere and I'm not sure what is causing it. It's a weird fading in and out effect.

Oscilationeffect - Instaudio

Is it because of the cheapy mic? Or do I have some settings I need to adjust somewhere? I don't have a sound card so the recording is being processed on the motherboard of my computer; maybe it's that? Anyone have any ideas?

 
The following users thanked this post: COF

Offline TheBuddha

  • National Treasure!
  • Administrator
  • Full Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 166
  • Thanked: 20 times
  • Karma: +14/-3
  • Damned right!
    • View Profile
    • Play Guitar
Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #1 on December 05, 2018, 09:17:09 AM »

Technical correction: You do have a sound card, it's just built in! (It's still considered a sound card, it's an 'onboard sound card.') At least I'm 99.98% sure of this.

Are you referring to the volume fading in and out?

If so, there's a few things you can try. One, it's probably the mic. If you went too cheap, you get too cheap. Reviews will help with that.

In my learning process, I first tried an onboard sound card. I had zero luck. I then got some cheap $20 card. I also had zero luck. I then bought a very, very expensive professional sound card - and I had zero luck.

It turns out, the 2nd one (the $20 one) was fine. I was just REALLY bad at it. With the onboard sound, I'd fill the buffer and get points of silence. That went away with the cheap one - and I suspect other problems went away but I was still too new to notice them.

The expensive sound card sits in a PC that I don't actually use. It made so little difference that I haven't bothered moving it. I also thought I had another buffer issue, but that was actually an Audacity timing issue that took some work to resolve and has nothing to do with your problem.

One of the causes might be electronic interference. Your devices are probably leaky. They're emitting all sorts of EMR. That could cause this problem.

What you can try is moving the mic as far away from the computer as the cord will let it go.

There's also the distance of the mic from the amp. You can try increasing that distance.

And, of course, this is really @MrHarryReems domain. He may think of something I don't know.

See the related projects: Music For Us & Play Guitar!
 
The following users thanked this post: SandHog

Offline SandHog

Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #2 on December 05, 2018, 02:13:17 PM (Edited December 05, 2018, 02:24:45 PM) »

Thanks, Buddha. Yeah, onboard sound card is what I meant. Maybe I'll pick up a sound card and throw it in the pc. Sounds like there isn't much point in buying a high-end one if you couldn't tell much difference between the two. That's good to know.

It probably is the mic as I just picked up a cheap one figuring it couldn't be any worse than the one in my phone. I didn't expect the volume swells or whatever it is that's happening though. It's rather annoying! I'll do some experimentation later today at various distances to see if it is interference. Barring that what's a reasonable price point for a decent mic? I know nothing about what I should be looking for when it comes to microphones.

Ed: Oops, guess I should have posted this on the recording board. Didn't see it right off. Feel free to move the post there if you like.

 
The following users thanked this post: COF

Offline MrHarryReems

Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #3 on December 05, 2018, 04:08:12 PM »

What you really need is an interface.  You can get by with a cheap mic... Believe it or not, I mic up my cabs with $39 GLS Audio ES-57's.  While I *do* own some more expensive mics, the ES-57's work a treat.

You can get a reasonable starter audio interface in the $100~ range.  Before I knew anything about this stuff, I was completely skeptical about audio interfaces.  I'm a computer guy, computer hardware should be good enough, right?  Nope.  There's no way I can possibly express the difference.  You simply need an interface.  If I know a little more about what you want to record now, and what your plans are for the next year in regards to what you want to record, I can offer some suggestions as to some decent starter interfaces.  How many instruments are you planning on recording at one time?  Are you planning on using a keyboard controller for soft synths?  For the record, when I'm putting my tracks together and recording the initial scratch track, I never use less than 2 inputs.  I've always got one mic on the guitar and one in my face.  More if I've got my drum machine going along with the scratch track.  I narrow that down to 1 mic when I'm doing the overdubs.

Next, we need to get you away from Audacity and onto a real DAW.  Bandlab now offers the entire Cakewalk Pro suite for free here.

Hit me back with info on what you're looking to do and I'll send you some interface recommendations.

 
The following users thanked this post: COF, SandHog

Offline SandHog

Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #4 on December 05, 2018, 07:52:21 PM »

Hey thanks, MrHarryReems. I should have asked this question before I bought a mic. That's a really sweet price!

For now I'm just looking to record with a single input (guitar) although at some point I would like to expand out and start doing some vocals as well but I'm not in a real rush on that front. Mostly I'm looking to learn some songs and record them so that I can use them to improve my playing.

> Are you planning on using a keyboard controller for soft synths?

Umm, maybe? I have no earthly idea, lol. I'm an utter neophyte when it comes to all this stuff.

I'm downloading Cakewalk Pro now and I'll check it out. If I understand it correctly you run the guitar through an interface and into the software where you can record however many inputs the interface is designed for?

 

Offline MrHarryReems

Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #5 on December 05, 2018, 10:09:15 PM »
Quote

> Are you planning on using a keyboard controller for soft synths?

Umm, maybe? I have no earthly idea, lol. I'm an utter neophyte when it comes to all this stuff.

In that case, I'm going to rule out any interfaces without MIDI I/O.  The cost difference is negligible, and if there's even a remote possibility that you'll use it in the future, you don't want to be replacing your interface in 6 months when you realize you need it.

Quote

I'm downloading Cakewalk Pro now and I'll check it out. If I understand it correctly you run the guitar through an interface and into the software where you can record however many inputs the interface is designed for?

Got it in one.

Here is a 2 channel interface with MIDI in/out.  This was my first interface, and I credit this purchase for my entry into audio production.  It's easy to get good sounding recordings from this thing.  I later discovered that it's because the Presonus preamps are crazy hot.  It's like running a saturation plugin all the time, or a nice tube amp.  These things are $99, and while not the best interface on the planet, they're $99 and can still make a great recording.

I tend to like Focusrite preamps because they are a lot more transparent, but in order to get MIDI I/O, you are looking at $219 for the 2i4.

At $150, you have a LOT of choices:

Steinberg UR22mkII

Behringer Uphoria.  This one is a great deal because it has 4 inputs, and Midas preamps are pretty darned good.  They're not the top of the line Midas preamps, but Midas does not make junk.  It also has fantastic reviews.  Were it my money, this is what I'd be looking at.  I've recently replaced my Focusrite 18i20 with a Behringer X-Air X18 that has these same preamps, so all of my recent recordings are using similar gear.

Mackie Onyx producer at $119.  Personally, I hate Mackie preamps, but that's just my opinion, and you know what they say about opinions...

Roland Rubix 22

At any rate, take a look at these interfaces...  Any one of them would do what you need, but the Behringer would probably give you a little room to grow.  I should probably mention that it's rare that I use more than 4 inputs at once.  Pretty much only when I'm recording drums, or the whole band at once.

 
The following users thanked this post: SandHog

Offline crazy_eyes

Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #6 on December 05, 2018, 11:57:06 PM »

Im thinking the sound is too loud for the mic to handle

 
The following users thanked this post: SandHog

Offline MrHarryReems

Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #7 on December 06, 2018, 01:31:23 AM »
Quote

Im thinking the sound is too loud for the mic to handle

That's a matter of gain staging.  While not recommended, it's possible to use something super sensitive like an ribbon or condenser mic on a high SPL cab, you just have to work with mic placement and gain staging. 

 
The following users thanked this post: SandHog

Offline SandHog

Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #8 on December 06, 2018, 03:54:23 PM »

@MrHarryReems seems That Behringer Uphoria looks like it might just fit the bill. Think I'll pick one up and give it a whirl. Thanks for the input, you rock!

@crazy_eyes Thanks for the suggestion! I went back and tried staging the mic in various places, adjusted volume levels and tested it to see if it reacted any differently to playing clean vs distorted. My conclusion is that it's just a garbage mic as nothing really seemed to make much of a difference in regards to the effect produced. Live and learn lol. I'm only out 20 bucks so it was a cheap lesson all things considered.

 

Offline MrHarryReems

Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #9 on December 07, 2018, 11:43:01 AM »

Once you have your interface and a mic, check out this article on tracking that I wrote for @TheBuddha's page.

 
The following users thanked this post: SandHog

Offline SandHog

Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #10 on December 07, 2018, 12:56:50 PM »

That's really helpful, thanks. My interface should show up next week sometime.

 

Offline TheBuddha

  • National Treasure!
  • Administrator
  • Full Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 166
  • Thanked: 20 times
  • Karma: +14/-3
  • Damned right!
    • View Profile
    • Play Guitar
Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #11 on December 07, 2018, 01:11:04 PM »

@SandHog Did you end up going with the one you mentioned above?

You could also link it. You could also write a review about it, once you have used it a bit.

In fact, I'm going to make a gear review category.

See the related projects: Music For Us & Play Guitar!
 

Offline SandHog

Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #12 on December 07, 2018, 01:32:58 PM »

Yeah, I took @MrHarryReems advice and went with the Behringer Uphoria https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/UMC404HD--behringer-u-phoria-umc404hd

Hmm, I'm missing something with the link formatting; it's not what I am accustomed to. Anyway, that's the interface I picked. I may do a review on it from a beginners perspective at some point. We'll see.

 

Offline TheBuddha

  • National Treasure!
  • Administrator
  • Full Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 166
  • Thanked: 20 times
  • Karma: +14/-3
  • Damned right!
    • View Profile
    • Play Guitar
Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #13 on December 07, 2018, 02:32:07 PM »

LOL I made you the mod of the reviews section! Do a good job and you'll figure it out as you go along.

What link formatting are you having issues with? You can just paste the URL and, on a good day, it'll even get the title for you - that kind of depends on how quickly the other site responds. It's time limited, so slow sites just post the URL but fast enough sites will post the actual title.

Music For Us! | Celebrating the connections. (that should do it just fine).

See the related projects: Music For Us & Play Guitar!
 

Offline SandHog

Re: Experiencing a weird issue with recording
« Reply #14 on December 10, 2018, 03:35:43 PM »

Hey, wait a minute...I see what you did there! You are a tricksy one Buddha. Very tricksy indeed!

For the links I'm used to using brackets for the link text and then parenthesis around the actual hyperlink itself; like on Voat. My mic came in the mail today. Hopefully the interface shows up sooner rather than later so I can get a chance to fiddle around with it and figure out the basics before Friday. Ended up going to my uncle's place in the mountains this last weekend for a poker game with the old folks so I missed all the fun Friday.