- Silent Way
- Media Asset Management Guide
- Audio Equipment
- Mac OS Tips
- Silent Way Forum
- Protecting Your Privacy
- San Francisco Bay Area
- Web Directory
USB/Firewire Notebook Meeting Recording PreAmp
Thu, 06/30/2005 - 23:12
With a couple of M-Audio USB Mobile Pre's, four good condenser mics and a notebook, I have a system that provides excellent multi-channel playback meeting recording (NCH Swiftsound's MSRS software) anywhere but for the timing issue between the Pre's, creating echo, most times, between them of the order of 0.1 secs.
A search for a real solution has turned up nothing viable. A 19-inch preamp is not portable. I want a small(ish) 4- or (better) 6-ch XLR phantom-powered input pre-amp connecting to my notebook by USB or firewire (or SPDIF?), and portable. Am I asking too much? Should I be considering an anologue output pre-amp to a GigaPort AG converter to USB? Or finding some sort of SPDIF to cardbus adaptor to take SPDIF output from a digital preamp?
And I don't want to spend an arm and a leg on this gear.
It's surprising there just doesn't seem to be and one-box solution to this simple requirement, so I am sure I'm missing something. Any suggestions?
Fri, 07/01/2005 - 12:01#1
Your problem lies in mismatched clock. Multiple interfaces need to be clocked together or their timing will be off. The mismatch would be heard either subtly (as smearing/phasing) or drastically (as an audible echo/delay).
The Mobile Pre has no word clock input, so you don't have the option of using an external clock generator (via word clock). And it has no digital input, so you don't have the option of clocking via SPDIF etc. So you can really only use one at a time.
Some other units are designed to be daisy-chained, routing their clock via software drivers which allow you to select which unit is the clock master (such as all the MOTU interfaces).
Quote:FireWire, 24 bit/192k, 8 analog in (4 XLR mic, 4 TRS), 8 analog out (TRS), 8 ch ADAT I/O, AES I/O and S/PDIF I/O. Has 4 mic preamps, ADAT sync, word clock I/O, MIDI I/O, headphone out, more. Bus-powered off FireWire for portable field recording, or with external battery pack, or with wall AC. Zero-latency monitoring of multiple sources. Works as stand-alone mixer. Comes with AudioDesk software (Digital Performer w/o MIDI).
I've been using the Traveler for a month or two and I'm a big fan. Note that officially it does not come with an AC power pack, but my particular unit did (I bought it from zZounds). Some other users have gotten AC packs, some have not. Perhaps MOTU is in the process of changing their stock one way or the other?