Feeds
45%
M-Audio Pro Tools Recording Studio

M-Audio Pro Tools Recording Studio

Plug 'n' play, the muso way

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Given that music software defaults will typically set a new track to input channel one, plumb in a microphone and you’re away. Well, nearly. Dynamic mics are fine, but more expensive condenser mics require phantom power (+48V) and the FastTrack doesn’t have that, so forget about using any fancy mics. You can use both mic and guitar channels at the same time on separate tracks. I set it up to record a direct feed to the guitar input from a built-in pickup on an acoustic guitar while simultaneously capturing the natural sound with the mic.

M-Audio Pro Tools Recording Studio

Pro Tools edit window, media browser and mixer
Click for a larger image

Even though the guitar input doesn’t have a level control, it is set with sufficient gain to work fine with most pickups. I tested it out with an acoustic guitar fitted with a Schaller Oyster piezo pickup and an electric guitar with Mighty Mite humbuckers. Without the high impedance input, the piezo would have sounded very thin and brittle, but instead was warm and full-bodied. Likewise, the electric also had a much punchier sound. A word to the wise though, switching between guitar and line modes delivers an almighty thump to the output. This sort of behaviour immediately spells, ‘cheap and nasty’.

Returning to the twin track approach, the direct input was captured with no complaints, but the mic recording seemed to fizz a bit, with irregular buzzing reminiscent of mobile phone interference. Turning the mic level up, naturally, increased how noticeable this was. The mic used was an Audix OM7, designed for live vocals and very well screened – fine for test purposes considering I couldn’t use a condenser mic. Wi-Fi was off, cables were checked, replaced, even computers and geographic location were changed, but the outcome was the same – erratic noise. Check it out on this untreated, uncompressed 24-bit recording here.

So, if ballads aren’t your thing and you’re only ever going to record a thrash metal, then this might not be an issue, but unplug the mic and things get worse. The mic input channel suddenly hums like a fridge-freezer showroom. The noise is quite alarming but instantly curtailed by turning the mic input level all the way down – easy.

But an unused input really shouldn’t be humming away so loudly. More to the point, if you’re using the guitar/line input and have the mix control set for input, you’ll hear all this humming unless you remember to keep the mic level turned down completely. It’s disturbing, distracting and just not right.

M-Audio Pro Tools Recording Studio

The Structure plug-in features two edit pages to shape your sounds

Another thing that isn’t right is the software. Earlier on I mentioned that you can only hear the input signal treated with effects during recording. I lied, although this is the case with this watered-down version of Pro Tools. Use the FastTrack interface with other recording software that allows input monitoring during playback – which is just about all of them – then you can play along to a backing track with effects, which is great for working out ideas without getting bogged down by unnecessary recording.

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

Next page: Verdict

More from The Register

next story
Reg man builds smart home rig, gains SUPREME CONTROL of DOMAIN – Pics
LightwaveRF and Arduino: Bright ideas for dim DIYers
Leaked pics show EMBIGGENED iPhone 6 screen
Fat-fingered fanbois rejoice over Chinternet snaps
Apple patent LOCKS drivers out of their OWN PHONES
I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't let you text that
Microsoft signs Motorola to Android patent pact – no, not THAT Motorola
The part that Google never got will play ball with Redmond
Slip your finger in this ring and unlock your backdoor, phone, etc
Take a look at this new NFC jewellery – why, what were you thinking of?
Happy 25th birthday, Game Boy!
Monochrome handset ushered in modern mobile gaming era
Rounded corners? Pah! Amazon's '3D phone has eye-tracking tech'
Now THAT'S what we call a proper new feature
US mobile firms cave on kill switch, agree to install anti-theft code
Slow and kludgy rollout will protect corporate profits
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.