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Thread: US-1800 Questions

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    US-1800 Questions

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    1) The LEV switch on the back is in regards to Consumer(-10) and Pro(+4) right? Does this switch effect the mic inputs, or is it just for line-in? I had it on (-10) all this time sadly. Is there any reason to ever have it set at -10 in a DAW, or should it always be at +4?

    2) Also, when using a ribbon mic or an SM7B(lower gain mics) with the US-1800, is it important to have a preamp? I've seen this suggested, but not sure if its just internet hyperbole or not. If so, can I use the preamp to add additional mic inputs?

    3) If a preamp can be used for this, would I just use an XLR to TRS cable out from pre amp into line inputs, without issues or anything I should be aware of? Are line inputs 11-14 the same as inputs 9 and 10?

    I'm sorry if these are stupid questions! Any part that anyone could answer would be a tremendous help to me, thank you so much for your time!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Help Help View Post
    1) The LEV switch on the back is in regards to Consumer(-10) and Pro(+4) right? Does this switch effect the mic inputs, or is it just for line-in? I had it on (-10) all this time sadly. Is there any reason to ever have it set at -10 in a DAW, or should it always be at +4?

    2) Also, when using a ribbon mic or an SM7B(lower gain mics) with the US-1800, is it important to have a preamp? I've seen this suggested, but not sure if its just internet hyperbole or not. If so, can I use the preamp to add additional mic inputs?

    3) If a preamp can be used for this, would I just use an XLR to TRS cable out from pre amp into line inputs, without issues or anything I should be aware of? Are line inputs 11-14 the same as inputs 9 and 10?

    I'm sorry if these are stupid questions! Any part that anyone could answer would be a tremendous help to me, thank you so much for your time!
    From memory as I had this unit for quite a while:

    I am not sure about the -10/+4 switch for the inputs. I thought they were for the outputs but just use what works for what you are using. I am just guessing here. Sure someone else will have a more accurate response.

    The 1800 had 60 db or so of gain. It could run a SM7b or a ribbon mic, but not as well as a higher end preamp. You can add an additional preamp to gain 2 more channels only if it has digital outputs. Channels 15 and 16 use the Digital input from preamps. I used a ART DSP II I believe, that had digital (SPDIF) output that allowed use of the last of the 16 channels of the 1800.

    Channels 9 and 10 run through the preamps. Not a clean 'line input'. It is more used for high z guitar inputs or to control the input level from supposed line level instruments. 11-14 are true line inputs without the preamp in the chain.

    Hope this helps.
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    If you are recording singing with lips almost on the grill the Tascam will be fine. Mine ran out of steam a little on speech from more than 6" or so. To get decent level it meant going a little too far around on the gain knob and there would be a raise in the noise floor. I rarely used the SM7B that far away, so never gave me issues - a cloud lifter is the usual device, but they're pricey things.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Help Help View Post
    1) The LEV switch on the back is in regards to Consumer(-10) and Pro(+4) right? Does this switch effect the mic inputs, or is it just for line-in? I had it on (-10) all this time sadly. Is there any reason to ever have it set at -10 in a DAW, or should it always be at +4?
    There are two of these switches. One controls line inputs 11/12 and the other is for 13/14. It has nothing to do with the mic inputs. It really is just a pad. The -10 setting will be hotter no matter what you’re plugging in. If that’s too hot, flip the switch. The noise floor on these inputs is pretty good, though, so for most things you could just set it to +4 and correct for gain in the box.

    2) Also, when using a ribbon mic or an SM7B(lower gain mics) with the US-1800, is it important to have a preamp? I've seen this suggested, but not sure if its just internet hyperbole or not. If so, can I use the preamp to add additional mic inputs?
    The (cheeeeeeap) ribbon that I have is too noisy with these preamps but I’m not sure that’s the preamp’s fault. If you were to use an external preamp, you’d preferably go balanced TRS to one of the line inputs. Remember that the front ones have the gain controls and the rear ones have the switches. If you were in a real pinch and all you other inputs were full, you could go to a mic input - just make sure phantom power is off.

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    I have not had any problems with the mic gain on mine. I usually keep the setting at about 1/2 for a condenser and 3/4 for a dynamic. I get plenty of gain to get a clean signal (clean signal is the key word here). If I need more gain, I do that in the DAW. You don't have to have a strong signal, just good enough to get full recording. After that, there are plenty of options.

    As Ash_Cat stated about 11-14, simple pads. Negative means a hotter signal, + means lower signal. I use 9 and 10 for DI purposes, 1-8 for mics. 15/16 I have the unit Jimmy use to have. I don't use it much but it works and that is what is required to get 15/16 for good use (or you can use it as a some other input).

    The replacement for that unit removes the SPDIF input and gives two more line inputs.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DM60 View Post
    I have not had any problems with the mic gain on mine. I usually keep the setting at about 1/2 for a condenser and 3/4 for a dynamic. I get plenty of gain to get a clean signal (clean signal is the key word here). If I need more gain, I do that in the DAW. You don't have to have a strong signal, just good enough to get full recording. After that, there are plenty of options.

    As Ash_Cat stated about 11-14, simple pads. Negative means a hotter signal, + means lower signal. I use 9 and 10 for DI purposes, 1-8 for mics. 15/16 I have the unit Jimmy use to have. I don't use it much but it works and that is what is required to get 15/16 for good use (or you can use it as a some other input).

    The replacement for that unit removes the SPDIF input and gives two more line inputs.
    Did I sell that ART DSP II to you? Man, memory goes first.... lol

    I believe you (Help Help) have all the information you need for now. Great bunch of people here helping. Props to you guys!


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    Yeah I've never had gain problems using the SM7B for vocals with the US-1800 either, wasn't sure if I was missing something, cause I often am. In this case I'm inquiring about using the 7B and ribbon mic for loud electric guitar, so it shouldn't matter.

    Thank you all SO MUCH!!!! I have no one in real life to ask even the simplest and most amateur questions I have(and I have a lot of dumb questions ha), so I can't tell you how much it means to me that you all took the time to help me here, or how helpful it is for me. jimmys69, rob aylestone, ashcat, DM60, I wish I could buy you all a beer or something. If I get confused about something(which I invariably do) I might return to beg of more of your knowledge, but for now, this has all been tremendously helpful. Thank you all!!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Help Help View Post
    Yeah I've never had gain problems using the SM7B for vocals with the US-1800 either, wasn't sure if I was missing something, cause I often am. In this case I'm inquiring about using the 7B and ribbon mic for loud electric guitar, so it shouldn't matter.

    Thank you all SO MUCH!!!! I have no one in real life to ask even the simplest and most amateur questions I have(and I have a lot of dumb questions ha), so I can't tell you how much it means to me that you all took the time to help me here, or how helpful it is for me. jimmys69, rob aylestone, ashcat, DM60, I wish I could buy you all a beer or something. If I get confused about something(which I invariably do) I might return to beg of more of your knowledge, but for now, this has all been tremendously helpful. Thank you all!!!!
    Looks like you have been on the board for a while. If you don't come back and ask, no matter how dumb you might think it is, it is your own fault. I would say 99.9% of the folks are here just for that reason.

    I will be honest, this whole recording journey has not been as simple as many may think. So don't be embarrassed about not knowing something that is pretty damn complex.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DM60 View Post
    Looks like you have been on the board for a while. If you don't come back and ask, no matter how dumb you might think it is, it is your own fault. I would say 99.9% of the folks are here just for that reason.

    I will be honest, this whole recording journey has not been as simple as many may think. So don't be embarrassed about not knowing something that is pretty damn complex.
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    I for one am happy to help.

    I’m still using the US1641 that I bought from @jimmys69 when I first joined in my live/tracking rig and I like it so much that I got a used US1800 for my mix room setup. For all practical purposes they are identical, even using the same drivers.

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