Which Way Is Best

Nard

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I have re-jigged the way I connect to my laptop to record and I’m not sure if it’s the best method even though it seems to work ok. Instead if using an interface I’m going from a anologue mixer into the mic input on the laptop then back out to the mixer for playback. I’ve only bypassed the interface so there is one less pre amp to worry about. Any thoughts on the rights or wrongs would be appreciated.
 

somebodyelseuk

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Depends on yer interface, but the chances are the A/D D/A converters in the laptop aren't as good as the ones in the interface.
How the OS works with the onboard soundcard versus the interface...? Latency?
How all the above impacts on heat generated within the laptop...?
I used a lappie for a couple of years, but went back to recording on a purpose built tower, after the premature death of two laptops from heat generation.
 

Nard

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The interface I was using comes from a Boss micro BR 80 which works ok but is a tiny little thing that is fiddly to use and becomes a pain in the ass as it has its own record and output levels with no control over eq. Recording acoustic through it is a task in itself and the results are not that great.
A quick test using the set up I have now had no latency issues but I don’t want the sound quality to suffer by way of everything going into a laptop mic input.
 

yeti

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Signal to noise must be atrocious in your setup, line level mixer turned way down into mic input gaining it way up, not good gain staging at all. if your laptop input is line level then it might be better but all built in analog I/O in laptops and desktops usually sucks. The components are just too close to each other and they pick up all kinds of noise, do yourself a favor and go back to using an interface.
 

Nard

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Signal to noise must be atrocious in your setup, line level mixer turned way down into mic input gaining it way up, not good gain staging at all. if your laptop input is line level then it might be better but all built in analog I/O in laptops and desktops usually sucks. The components are just too close to each other and they pick up all kinds of noise, do yourself a favor and go back to using an interface.
I can’t hear any unwanted noise but I see the levels on the DAW fluttering slightly. Obviously something is there but I can’t hear it or find what’s causing it.
Once again thanks for the advice guys. I knew I could rely on people around here to point me in the right direction.
 

Rds

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Man I'm no expert. All the guys above are right on. That laptop card prob cost a buck to produce. Anything would be better. Long time ago I did the same. Used a peavey xr1200 into a PC with a audigy sound blaster card. I could mic a whole drum set. It was fun. Sounded better than a 4 track. Long time ago. Been useing an interface with reaper for quit a long time now. Would not go back :D. Still have some of those older recordings. Weren't too bad for the time.
 

Frogfur

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IMG_20181229_053410_8692.jpg

Came with Pro Tools Express.
Good interface. Can use with Mac, Windows and i-pad. I still take this with me when i travel at times. That way i can catch two at once if necessary.
 
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Nard

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View attachment 349705
Came with Pro Tools Express.
Good interface. Can use with Mac, Windows and i-pad. I still take this with me when i travel at times. That way i can catch two at once if necessary.
Thanks Frogfur. I’ve been thinking about getting a stand alone interface rather than use the BR80. So far I’ve only really looked at the Focusrite Scarlett range as it seems quite popular. I use a condenser mic for some things but there is a lot of hiss that seems to come from the separate phantom power supply that I use. The BR 80 doesn’t have its own phantom power but when I use the mixer’s power it comes through clean.
 

KP11520

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Find a used Tascam US-1800 with 8 recording inputs with preamps (simultaneously). Not a Motu or RME or the likes, But for somewhere around $100, offers a lot to work with (the right way).

Or any used Audio Interface. As long as the drivers are available for your OS.
 


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