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Thread: Digital efx with analog gear

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    Question Digital efx with analog gear

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    Hello everyone. I am currently using " all " analog gear : Teac A-3340S r2r, Teac Model 3 and 5 sound boards, AN-300 Dolby noise unit, etc. I was wondering if I could use a Digital Effects unit with this setup without hurting anything.

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    I was wondering the same thing. I've got a TC Electronics C-300 and M-350 compressor/reverb/delay units that I know aren't analog, but have been using them in the meantime, regardless. Once I really start learning the ins and outs of recording, I'll start diving into the full analog outboard setup. The only thing is, I haven't a clue what equipment is analog and what is digital, as far as outboard effects units. I think Tascam had an analog reverb unit, but that's as much as I know about vintage effects gear.
    The interface said to use "Windows XP or higher"...

    ... I used tape...

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    Quote Originally Posted by poor_boy_record View Post
    I was wondering if I could use a Digital Effects unit with this setup without hurting anything.
    Yes you could. And you can.

    Knowledge is calculable, Ignorance has no limits.
    Dr ZEE
    MZE | Dr ZEE WORKSHOP

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    Thanks guys. Appreciate the help.

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    yeah I know you got the answer already, but . . . .

    I run an alesis digital reverb through the effects loop of my TASCAM 488 mk2 with no problems at all. Just thought I'd add to the "yes" chorus.

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    Surely.

    This was discussed in another thread recently too...same basic question.

    In most cases when we are talking about effects we are talking about send effects, not insert effects so you still have a percentage of the "dry" unaffected signal coming through. So for analog purists there is still digitally affected audio when using digital effects processors in that way. For the rest of us who use whatever we like or have available/can get our hands on there is still the anchoring analog source material in the mix.

    I have a Roland DC-30 analog delay/chorus unit with a feedback loop that will overdrive the effect so I like to use that for dub stuff, and I've also got a Tascam RS-20B dual stereo spring reverb unit that just sounds nice with just about anything. But then I've also got my Yamaha 01X digital mixer/control surface/computer interface that has two stereo effects engines in it and I use that for all kinds of stuff too.

    So you're not going to hurt anything, and when I'm discussing the "analog purist" above I'm talking about the person who just plain prefers the sound of analog effects with their analog material or who otherwise wants to keep everything "analog".

    I haven't a clue what equipment is analog and what is digital, as far as outboard effects units. I think Tascam had an analog reverb unit, but that's as much as I know about vintage effects gear.
    Lots available on both sides of the fence, but certainly the analog effects are pricier and there are more units that weren't rackmount and many have seen hard lives. Anything in particular you are looking for? I mean, that's the thing...for me anyway, when I got the DC-30 it was because I wanted to be able to put overdriven echo in my dub mixes and I couldn't afford a Space Echo, but I found the DC-30 which actually sounds pretty good. Not a tape delay. Same thing with the spring reverb. I wanted to be able to get the spring 'verb *poink* in my dub mixes on snare pops and I found a Boss RX-100...a year or so ago I saw the Tascam unit come up on eBay...I'd never seen one...didn't know they existed until I saw that listing but I snapped it up because it was clearly hand over fist better than the Boss unit. So anyway I got them for a particular sound. Otherwise digital effects have been great to work with. Very flexible and relatively a bargain.

    RS-20B (above the patchbay):


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    thanks Sweet. sorry if there was another thread on this subject. I searched the site and came up with nothing on this so posted this msg. As for analog vs digital, I would very much prefer the analog over digital and up til now have came up with no luck so went for the digital until I "can" find some more of the analog stuff i need. And, still being a newbie to recording, I have no idea what name brands to look for in alalog. Thanks again.

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    Quote Originally Posted by poor_boy_record View Post
    still being a newbie to recording, I have no idea what name brands to look for in alalog. Thanks again.
    The 'name brands' are expensive. Studer, Otari and Ampex to name a few. The Otari 24-tracks seem to routinely go for a couple of thousand pounds.
    I saw an MTR-90 mk2 going for about 500, and I'll admit I was tempted, but it weighs half a metric ton and the running costs will very steep. Here, 2" tape fetches about 130 a pop (plus tax), and twice that for the ATR stuff.

    Unless you can justify the cost of high-end pro gear, 1/2" or 1" Tascam is probably the way to go. Multitrack machines to consider include:

    Fostex R8 (8-track 1/4")
    Fostex E16/G16 (16-track 1/2")
    Tascam 80-8, 38, 48, 58, ATR 60-8, TSR-8 (8-track 1/2")
    Tascam MSR-16 (16-track 1/2")
    Tascam MS-16, ATR 60-16 (16-track 1")
    Tascam 388 (8-track 1/4")
    Otari 5050-8 (8-track 1/2")
    Revox C278 (8-track 1/2")

    2-track mixdown machines include:

    Fostex E2
    Fostex E22 (1/2")
    Otari 5050
    Tascam 22, 32, 42, BR-20
    Revox PR99, B77HS
    Studer A807 (these are expensive and can be finicky)
    ...plus a whole load of higher-end machines, too many to list...

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    Thx jp. I am familar with most of tape machines you mentioned ( admittedly not all ), but what I was talking about was the outboard gear like the reverbs reelperson was talking about, and effects, etc. Trying to keep everything analog. Since I am still in the learning process of recording I'll use my ol' Teac A-3340S until I get more of the feel of things. Thx for your reply and help. Almost forgot, I got this digital efx unit only until I can find some analog stuff like sweetbeats has. I just don't like digital.
    Last edited by PoorBoyRecordings; 04-03-2009 at 05:38. Reason: forgot

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    Quote Originally Posted by nate_dennis View Post
    yeah I know you got the answer already, but . . . .

    I run an alesis digital reverb through the effects loop of my TASCAM 488 mk2 with no problems at all. Just thought I'd add to the "yes" chorus.
    Thx nate. I need all the yeses I can get .

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