bummed..Vocal tracking

wasted cash?

  • this one

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • third try a charm

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • i dont hear difference

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    1
  • Poll closed .

CoolCat

Well-known member
so once again Im bummed, let down in gear.

I had an hour or so and got a short shootout between 3 setups.

Set up 1 is my SM58 into the Interface IC chip mic preamp.

Set up 2 is the same SM58 into a Cloudlifter into the Interface IC chip mic preamp.

Set up 3 is the SM58 into a Cloudlifter, into a dual transformer outboard Preamp into the KT2A into the Line In.

Cost$$..$100 SM58 for all

Setup 1- $0
Setup 2- $150 cloudlifter
Setup 3- $800 spent on the new 73pre and tube KT2A

using my snippet of McCartneys "3 Legs" line... heres the 1,2,3 audio...30 second snippets are not in order.... and not sung too well, but that wasnt the point here.

My Dog 58 2a 73 Ux8 Cloud MP3 by ccb | Free Listening on SoundCloud

anyone care to Vote or comment for a sanity check appreciated.
 

keith.rogers

Bobby'); DROP TABLE USER
First of all, it's an SM58 on what I'd call a non-operatic baritone (a little like mine, on a good day ;)), so what were you expecting?

Second, my ears are really bad anymore, so if there's anything going on way up in the HFs (e.g. "Air" switch on that Pre73 engaged), it's probably lost on me; but then, what content would be getting boosted in this example?)

Like I think I commented on in reference to a Julian Krause video where he points out that using all the gain in an interface mic pre doesn't really increase the S/N ratio, I think a lot of Cloudlifters get sold because folks just want to see a big fat waveform when they record. If you've got enough going into an SM58, normalized audio with/without a CL probably is not going to be a "wow" moment.

I have a Pre-73 and while I used it for a while, lately I've been fooling around with a tube mic on vocals (because I'm bored silly, if I'm honest) so haven't been using it. I think its value (?) is most effective on mics like LDCs with a more extended range, and maybe sources that have more upper range detail, like a female voice, perhaps. (Oh, you're using the CL *and* Pre-73? That's not necessary.)

Edit/p.s. I can convince myself there's a difference in the 3rd one, but in a mix it's not going to be evident to me.

p.p.s. The Pre73 has options to really boost the input gain and reduce output level, i.e., overdriving the pre, so that should be obvious with some knob twiddling.
 

miroslav

Cosmic Cowboy
Yeah...what were you expecting...what is your gripe exactly, how were you let down?

I wouldn't use a 58 as a test mic or to define the quality of the other components in the chain.

AFA how your voice sounds....you need to listen to it in the context of a mix, not by itself.
A baritone voice (which I also have) may sound great on its own if your looking for that announcer style of tone, because it's just the voice....but in a mix, I've found that a baritone voice is a lot harder to place...so that's where the context is important.

You trying to decide which of those three sound clips is better...and by that, which gear chain is better...is really not the best way to consider things.
It's like auditioning as synth patch by itself...they are always made to sound over the top, alone...and then in a mix, you end up having to adjust them.

I have the dual channel Warm Audio 73, if that's what you're also using, and TBH, I was kinda surprised how well it worked with my baritone voice when I listen to the mix....it lifted the voice and removed the mud.

I also have the KT2A (two of them)...but they arrived right before I started my new studio build...so have yet to really use them.
Not sure that you even needed the CL in the chain.

That said...I think the last one is the smoothest.
The first one has some edginess...the middle one is kinda thin.
 

CoolCat

Well-known member
Hey thanks for the input.

Actually I went through a bunch of mics and prefer the SM58 , over my SM7b and others either as good etc.....the LDC's I went throuh were ok but once tracking is done seems I go into PLUGIN-MANIC mode....and they can all sound better. So Dynamics in a shtroom is fine.

the MAIN idea was to get a good front end and maybe not need plugins...at least not so much. But I have some cash to blow and try to test the gear now and then. as you know Ive gone through several pieces and now the most common designs of 73transformer and 2A is highly rated by many so I thought Id try it in this place. I dont really by the vocal track will change and sound better all of a sudden in the mix. IME, sure once the plugins and everything sweetens it all up.

Expectations? I was hoping a larger wow factor, a large one. ...$800x's better..lol

Appreciate the last comment though, very much!
 

CoolCat

Well-known member
First of all, it's an SM58 on what I'd call a non-operatic baritone (a little like mine, on a good day ;)), so what were you expecting?

Second, my ears are really bad anymore, so if there's anything going on way up in the HFs (e.g. "Air" switch on that Pre73 engaged), it's probably lost on me; but then, what content would be getting boosted in this example?)

Like I think I commented on in reference to a Julian Krause video where he points out that using all the gain in an interface mic pre doesn't really increase the S/N ratio, I think a lot of Cloudlifters get sold because folks just want to see a big fat waveform when they record. If you've got enough going into an SM58, normalized audio with/without a CL probably is not going to be a "wow" moment.

I have a Pre-73 and while I used it for a while, lately I've been fooling around with a tube mic on vocals (because I'm bored silly, if I'm honest) so haven't been using it. I think its value (?) is most effective on mics like LDCs with a more extended range, and maybe sources that have more upper range detail, like a female voice, perhaps. (Oh, you're using the CL *and* Pre-73? That's not necessary.)

Edit/p.s. I can convince myself there's a difference in the 3rd one, but in a mix it's not going to be evident to me.

p.p.s. The Pre73 has options to really boost the input gain and reduce output level, i.e., overdriving the pre, so that should be obvious with some knob twiddling.

Thanks! I needed a couple of sanity inputs, ...yeah Im the same ...Im just messing about and trying things. I agree all three get to the same point and are similar, that was my aged ears too but I didnt hear any WOW # X was miles better.

I do the dynamics and tighter patterns as it fits this small room, large vocal booth? whatever.

Im probably burnt, because I have a larger room not in use, its just me though so like a desktop setup works fine and most the messing about is listening and testdriving gear...seeking the Holy Grail!! ha
 

miroslav

Cosmic Cowboy
I dont really by the vocal track will change and sound better all of a sudden in the mix. IME, sure once the plugins and everything sweetens it all up.

I wasn't implying it would sound "better" whatever that would be...rather that it may be "easier" to get it to sit in the mix, without the need to sweeten up withy lots of plugins. At least that's how I think one should compare the choices.

Also...how you turn those dials on the pre and the comp, can make a huge difference in the results you get...and I'm not sure where you set things when you did the tests. Look at it this way...with your $0.0 setup, that's all you can get, every time, with no other options.
That pre and comp have almost unlimited possibilities. Oh...are you talking about the Golden Age 73 pre or some other one...?...is there an EQ section or not?

I think that's often why it's better to at least get some of the bed tracks down, before the vocal...that way, when you make gear selection for the vocal and dial it in...you already have some context to reference against.

I think the idea of some big "WOW" just because more money was spent without really putting the gear through its paces and learning all the flavors you can get from it and how those flavors can work with the other tracks...is not really the right way to approach it, especially when you do a barebones test.
 

keith.rogers

Bobby'); DROP TABLE USER
I agree you should test something where you're dropping it into a mix and see how that works out. You might find some subtle things you might not hear do make your life easier. (Which reminds me to go try using my GAP Pre73 again with the tube mic. I was really comfy using that with a couple other mics, but I should see if it makes a difference with the latest toy. Just need a project...)
 

jimmys69

MOODerator
Agree with others. Not sure you will know what works without being placed in a mix.

That being said, try it with a different mic.
 

TalismanRich

Well-known member
Listening to the three samples, I'll offer the following comments:

A. It sounds a bit thinner than the other two. Level seems to be a touch down as well.

B. Overall clear but with a bit more weight than A. Both are clear.

C. This one actually sounds a bit darker compared to the others. There's a thickness on certain passages. I'm listening on my 7506s which are my brightest 'phones. If it sounds dark on these, it usually sounds really dark on my AKGs and Sennheisers, or on my monitors. That said, it would probably just take a light tweak on the EQ to lighten it a bit.

Since these are three separate takes, it could be the difference in how you actually sang the song, a bit or proximity boost, or being a little further away for a take. That makes any comparison tough because you don't know if its the preamp or the singer that is making the biggest difference.

I feel really sorry for your dog....
 

CoolCat

Well-known member
Thanks for the inputs. I get the "in the mix thing," I agree its more important.

ok but this is a SM58, its not an unknown mic, and the past couple tunes ended up with mucho plugs. Thats why I was trying another attempt on outboard gear. Ive played with the gains and KT comp/limit settings to a point where its still clean enough....its tempting to squash the KT2A because it sounds good like FM radio but in the mix as you say too much makes it really foggy.

Ive been through a bunch of LDC's and some SDC's and spent a large amount of time listening to U47 comparisons last week and wonder about trying a LDC again....however over say 20+ soundclips and youtubes one thing really stood out was the different rooms seemed to really play a bigger part on the U47 type mics and U47"clones".

seems in this case with the SM58, theres not mucho difference in 1,2,or3. thats totally cool...I dont care which is which, and appreciated the comments.
 

hautbois16

New member
How do you find the songs or portions of them on SoundCloud??? Being totally blind and unable to see the whole screen at once the way sighted person can, I have arrowed and tabbed around after signing into SoundCloud; but I cannot find the three actual recordings you have posted. So, using ONLY the KEYBOARD - no mouse - how can I RELIABLY find and hear the music?? I thought that SoundCloud claims accessibility, and maybe I am missing the music because I don't know enough about that app; but I will appreciate any information that will get me to the actual recordings.

Thanks,
 

rob aylestone

Well-known member
Forgive me, but we are talking about a setup with such tiny differences that could have been done with a tweak of eq. Adding stacked preamps sounds different. It doesn't sound better, just different. Surely whenever you record voice you then polish and hone it, and I reckon any of these adjust as polish friendly.
 
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