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Subject: noise during recording
Posted by: joejon
Date: 6/28/2014 4:56:18 PM

In another one of my posts it was suggested to me to get a USB audio interface. I just got the M-Audio M-Track Plus. I plugged it into my laptop and I put the settings according to the directions. I can get it to record but there is a lot of static noise which is why I bought the interface to get a cleaner sound. I'm using the 1/4" mic/line in and set the switch to mono since I'm only using one input. I'm not sure what the USB/Direct dial does yet. I have it set to USB. I will be trying another mic tomorrow but if it's some settings I need to change please let me know.

Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: joejon
Date: 6/28/2014 6:12:23 PM

I tried another mic so I don't think that is the problem. The other thing is that the M-Audio Plus manual said to select 2-channel, 16-bit 44100 Hz format in the recording properties (Control Panel). When I click the down arrow the only options are 24-bit 44100Hz and 24-bit 48000Hz, there is no 16-bit option. This interface has as much or more noise than when I directly plugged the mic input of the computer.

Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: pwppch
Date: 6/28/2014 6:34:17 PM

Can you put a small recording that shows the noise problem on a Dropbox or similar place?

Perhaps the forum members can help determine what the problem is.


Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: rraud
Date: 6/29/2014 8:57:51 AM

This is likely an overlooked setting someplace. Sorry I don't have any hands-on experience with the device, so my recommendations are general.
- Verify you have the appropriate audio input device is selected in the SF menu "Options> Preferences> Audio".
- Make sure the sample rate and bit depth are set the same in both SF and the USB device. "File> New" will give this option. As well as "New" in the 'Record' window. The input channel can be selected in the 'Record' window also: Left/ Right /Both.
- Disable Phantom Power unless using a condenser mic or active DI that requires it..
- Confirm your cables/connectors are in working condition in other devices.
-You may also try temporarily disabling the PCs on-board card.
-Temporarily disable anti-virus and other applications that may be running the background
- By all means, post a clip of a short recording

Message last edited on 6/29/2014 9:05:18 AM by rraud.
Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: Chienworks
Date: 6/29/2014 11:20:21 AM

My Tascam US-1800 USB interface will occasionally connect and give a roaring sound like blowing directly into a microphone. Switching it off and back on again fixes it. It's happened maybe 3 times since i got it 2 months ago. Not enough to worry about, but still disconcerting.

Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: joejon
Date: 6/29/2014 11:55:23 AM

I checked all the settings that you mentioned. The strange thing is that in the M-Audio manual it says to set the recording audio to 16-bit,44100Hz but in the M-Audio Plus setting it only gives an option for 24-bit and either 44100Hz or 48000Hz. So I selected the 24-bit,44100Hz and also set that in Sound Forge. Still bad noise. I went on the M-Audio website and it looks like I have the latest drivers. My other son is coming over with another mic that he records with today so I will try that. Still, I think that there should be a 16-bit option in the M-Audio settings.

Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: ChristoC
Date: 6/29/2014 3:33:53 PM

In SoundForge, have you selected the M-Audio device in Menu|Options|Preferences|Audio?
Does it have it's own ASIO drivers?
The 16bit/24bit thing is of minor consequence and will not give rise to the noise you mention; it is perfectly OK to record a 24bit word as 16bit; the last 8 bits will merely be ignored, and result has slightly less dynamic range....

Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: joejon
Date: 6/29/2014 8:35:26 PM

I downloaded different drivers and yes I can select the M-Audio ASIO drivers which I am now using. I also tried a couple different mics one producing better results than the other. Still some noise but not as bad. I may be in the market for a new mic since the better sounding mic is my other son's mic and I won't be able to use that one. Any suggestion on mics to look at for recording piano, bongo drums, and recorder/flutes. I don't want to spend a fortune but I want something decent. Also, one mic I used had a 1/4 inch plug and the other one had an XLR plug. Is there any difference in recording between the two types on inputs?

Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: ChristoC
Date: 6/29/2014 11:10:00 PM

In general, mics with XLR tend to be more immune to noise and interference than mics with 1/4in plug.
You get what you pay for with mics - if you want good sound, you need a good mics, simple as that..... don't expect good sound or low noise unless you spend at least a hundred dollars and more each .... I start to get excited at a few thousand dollars, so I'm the last one to ask for advice if you have a budget!
A good place to start looking is Rode M5 for instruments, which offers lots of bang for buck.

Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: Geoff_Wood
Date: 6/30/2014 2:10:28 AM

... and mics with 1/4" jack plugs tend to be 'toy' mics.

Re noise - you havev't got the preamp gain cranked unnecessarily far up by any chance ?


Message last edited on 6/30/2014 2:10:47 AM by Geoff_Wood.
Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: joejon
Date: 6/30/2014 9:41:26 AM

I tried my Rhode videomic with a 1/4" input adapter and that seems to have quite a bit of noise. So I'm guessing you're right that the mics with the 1/4" input introduces more noise than XLR inputs. I looked at the Rhode M5 as you suggested which is a pair of mics. I also saw the following Rhode mics in the same price range - NT1, NT1-A, NT3. I'm guessing those might have a better sound than the M5 pair since it's one mic for the same price as two (maybe not). I'm not sure if it would be better to use the 2 M5 mics or use one of the other models and then copy the channel in SF. I've done more video editing in Vegas than audio editing in Sound Forge so it's going to be trial and error for awhile. Thanks for all the suggestions and information so far.

Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: joejon
Date: 7/3/2014 5:42:55 PM

Do you have the Rode M5 mics? Or have you heard anything (instruments) recorded with them? They are $200, which is fine. I don't mind going up in price a little (under $400) if there are better options. I think having two mics for recording a piano is better than one. I don't see a lot of information on the M5's so it's difficult to make a decision.

Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: ChristoC
Date: 7/3/2014 6:43:23 PM

No I don't have M5 - have read some good reviews by people I know have some idea what they talk about - I have a couple of pairs of NT5 mics in my cupboard, which are mid-priced and compare favorably with quite high priced mics such as Neumann KM84 / KM184, or AKG C451+CK1, (though the letter still sound 'better'....).
Rode NT55 is same as NT5 but with HPF & PAD switches.
Don't be tempted by the Rode NT4 stereo mic - it is awful!

Two mics is always better than one if you want some dimension to your sound!

Message last edited on 7/3/2014 6:45:48 PM by ChristoC.
Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: rraud
Date: 7/4/2014 10:14:13 AM

"Two mics is always better than one if you want some dimension to your sound!"
Two mics can also make a mess of things when they're out of phase, a common error for inexperienced folks.
That said, grand pianos are generally recorded with a matched stereo pair.

Subject: RE: noise during recording
Reply by: jackn2mpu
Date: 7/6/2014 1:33:31 PM

A good general purpose mic that will take a beating is the Shure SM57. Vocals, drums, guitar cabs - you name it. And being a dynamic mic you don't use 48v phantom power. Just get good cables. It's not the best mic out there but for under $100 each US it can't be beat. A little better and more expensive is the SM58.


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