2022 our 25th year online!

Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 3 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments.
Over 100,000 members from around the world.
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

Shop our online store for music lovers
SEARCH
Piano Forums & Piano World
(ad)
Pianoteq
Steinway Spiro Layering
(ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad)
Wessell Nickel & Gross
PianoForAll
Who's Online Now
62 members (ChickenBrother, Carey, brdwyguy, Belger1900, BlackKnight, Aaron McKeon, Consul50, 16 invisible), 596 guests, and 312 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Hop To
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3
#3211545 04/24/22 05:09 PM
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
I'm switching from my mixer to an audio interface - have gotten far enough to know it will be a Focusrite either Scarlett or Clarett. My piano is a Kawai CA97 and there are stereo (RCA??) cables coming out that look like this in the present mixer (old pic) - yellow and red:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/hxfyy4zlspx4wj5/Mixer1.jpg?dl=0

I've found two configurations from two on-line manuals - in one they're plugged into the back (line in, line out), in the other they're plugged into the front). Which is the right one will determine the "size" of interface I buy.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/ot18086u3fvdtcs/Focusrite%20question.jpg?dl=0

I found a video explaining that line-in is for "hot" signals, and the front is for "low" signals.

What does this mean in terms of my dp?

In my present setup, I have the digital piano, plus an XLR clip-on mike. If the two piano jacks plug into the front, I'd have to get 4i4 (Scarlett) - if they go in the back, I only need 2i2. Would the choice also affect sound quality.

Purpose is mostly recording: also interacting over Zoom.

Signed clueless as usual.
Thanks in advance smile

Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 3,751
3000 Post Club Member
Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 3,751
Your DP has line output which will work fine with the line in of the audio interface.

On the front, you have inputs which can be used in three ways : XLR/Microphone, Jack/Line in, and Jack/Hi Z instrument.

To use these inputs as line in, just use Jack and disable the INST mode.


On the back of 4i4, you have no choice : Jack/Line in.


When commenting a video, it is preferable to post a link on it… here I have no idea of the exact wording of the video and can tell you if it is exact, ambiguous or if you haven’t well understood it correctly.

Last edited by Frédéric L; 04/24/22 06:12 PM.

http://www.sinerj.org/
http://humeur-synthe.sinerj.org/
Yamaha N1X, Bechstein Digital Grand, Garritan CFX, Ivory II pianos, Galaxy pianos, EWQL Pianos, Native-Instrument The Definitive Piano Collection, Soniccouture Hammersmith, Truekeys, Pianoteq
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
Originally Posted by Frédéric L
Your DP has line output which will work fine with the line in of the audio interface.

On the front, you have inputs which can be used in three ways : XLR/Microphone, Jack/Line in, and Jack/Hi Z instrument.

I gave a link to a pic of my cables, which are the line output, so I know it has that. This is the pic.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/hxfyy4zlspx4wj5/Mixer1.jpg?dl=0

The question is whether these two cables should be put in the front or the back of the audio interface, and if it makes a difference.

I have no idea about "INST" mode, what that is. I just now that the front can be powered up for XLR, or left unpowered.

Quote
When commenting a video, it is preferable to post a link on it… here I have no idea of the exact wording of the video and can tell you if it is exact, ambiguous or if you haven’t well understood it correctly.

I've time-stamped the section I was referring to:
part of video discussing this.

(I also understand French.)

Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 134
Full Member
Online Content
Full Member
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 134
There are two considerations.

1. Level.
2. Input wiring.

Some things produce very low voltage. Examples are a microphone or the pickup ("needle") on a phonograph. They are converting the mechanical energy of the vibration of the mic's diaphragm or the needle directly into electricity.

While pretty much any audio signal needs amplification for various purposes, those "low level" types of signal need extra amplification (like an extra 1000-times or more) and require a separate bit of electronics called a "pre-amplifier".

The signal coming out of the pickup on an electric guitar is also at quite a low level.

On the other hand, when you have a stereo setup and have a receiver, a tape deck, DVD player, etc... those output audio at a higher electric voltage ("line level"). So does an electronic piano.

In a professional studio the "line level" connecting pieces of equipment is higher than the line level for typical home stuff.

The rear inputs on the 4i4 are only for line level.
The front inputs can, as Frédéric explained, be used for mic level, low level guitar inputs, or line level. They switch internally based on the type of connector used and on whether you set the "INST" mode to tell it to expect a guitar-type signal level.

The "wiring" bit has to do with whether a connection is "balanced" or "unbalanced".

"Most" home audio stuff is unbalanced. That means that there are two wires in use (for a particular audio stream - left, right, mono, whatever). One of those has the actual audio voltage. The other is tied to "ground". The systems use the instantaneous difference between the audio voltage and ground as the signal.
Professional systems, on the other hand, tend to have two signal lines, plus a ground connection. The difference between the two signal lines is the signal used. The big advantage of this is that any electrical noise tends to affect both signal lines identically, so that is automatically ignored by just looking at the difference between those two lines.

The inputs to the Scarlett are all balanced.
But the documentation says it's fine to plug in a mono ("TS" or "tip, sleeve") connector, assuming that your piano's output is unbalanced. (That said, I use "Y" stereo splitter adapters and plug the unbalanced audio into just one side of the "Y" and leave the other side unused... because I'm neurotic...)

I bought the 4i4 rather than 2i2 because my older N3 has a DIN MIDI connection and I can use the MIDI interface in the 4i4 and also because I have sometimes found the loopback feature useful (on a Zoom call using the Scarlett for the mic I can also play back other audio).


Jane - expert on nothing with opinions on everything
Joined: Mar 2022
Posts: 2,092
S
2000 Post Club Member
Online Content
2000 Post Club Member
S
Joined: Mar 2022
Posts: 2,092
Originally Posted by keystring
I found a video explaining that line-in is for "hot" signals, and the front is for "low" signals.
What does this mean in terms of my dp? In my present setup, I have the digital piano, plus an XLR clip-on mike.

Electrical specifications from a service manual will clear things up properly. But ----- usually 'line-in' and 'line-out' are probably linked to 'line-level' waveforms, which are usually AC waveforms with no DC component, and these waveforms will have their voltages not exceeding some standard level according to some 'standard'. These signals can generally be handled and amplified with regular audio amplifiers for driving audio speakers.

Just for comparison, there are microphone level waveforms ------ what is the level of those? Probably depends on what sort of microphone it is. Whatever is the case ..... the voltage levels of these can be relatively small (low) when compared with line-level. And also - for any case, good signal to noise ratio is desirable, and when any processing of these waveforms is required, then the waveforms often need to be scaled up or down to be handled by whatever system is going to do the waveform processing. Not always though.

Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
JaneF, thank you. I'm getting closer to understanding. I'm still quite the newb so I hope I can pick your brains some more since I'm not there yet.

Going from my present level of understanding: My microphone has an XLR connection. When I plug it into the XLR input of my mixer, and push a button, then extra juice goes to it, boosting the signal. I was told regular mikes are 'weak' and this is better. So I'm assuming that the mike with the XLR is "low input" and it has the XLR jack so that it can get boosted. And the "INST" that Frédéric was talking about is the button that adds the extra juice. I'm assuming that anything without XLR is not intended to get boosted, so the piano cable doesn't get boosted because it's an ordinary jack. (?)

Quote
The signal coming out of the pickup on an electric guitar is also at quite a low level.

On the other hand, when you have a stereo setup and have a receiver, a tape deck, DVD player, etc... those output audio at a higher electric voltage ("line level"). So does an electronic piano.
Ok, my electric piano has a high voltage. It doesn't need to be boosted, so it's "line level" (front of the Focusrite, without juice - back of Focusrite which is only "line"). The microphone is low level and has to be plugged into the front.

Quote
The "wiring" bit has to do with whether a connection is "balanced" or "unbalanced".
I think this is where I'm going, "Does it make a difference whether I plug it into the front "line level" or the back "line level" - is the wiring inside the audio interface different?

Quote
"Most" home audio stuff is unbalanced. That means that there are two wires in use (for a particular audio stream - left, right, mono, whatever). One of those has the actual audio voltage. The other is tied to "ground". The systems use the instantaneous difference between the audio voltage and ground as the signal.

Hm - I think I took "left" "right" literally. Well, when I bought my CA97, the salesman had me "hear" how you heard the bass coming from the left, the treble from the right (I couldn't actually hear that :D) and I got an idea of "real stereo" if your recording end could manage. So with the outlet on the piano labeled "left right", the red wire being "right", the mixer having a red "right", I assumed that it was for this "stereo" effect. So "left right" actually means "voltage" + "ground"? Nothing to do with stereo?

Quote
But the documentation says it's fine to plug in a mono ("TS" or "tip, sleeve") connector, assuming that your piano's output is unbalanced. (That said, I use "Y" stereo splitter adapters and plug the unbalanced audio into just one side of the "Y" and leave the other side unused... because I'm neurotic...)

I don't know whether it's mono. It's 1/4" and both jacks have a single black band.

Quote
I bought the 4i4 rather than 2i2 because my older N3 has a DIN MIDI connection and I can use the MIDI interface in the 4i4 and also because I have sometimes found the loopback feature useful (on a Zoom call using the Scarlett for the mic I can also play back other audio).

My situation, since I also have the mike.

Now I'm thinking ---- You did not use the line-in input in the back. Why not? It must mean that wiring-wise or function-wise they're not the same. That may be my answer.

The ultimate is whether I get a 4i4 instead of a 2i2.

Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 1,638
A
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
A
Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 1,638
Originally Posted by keystring
I'm switching from my mixer to an audio interface - have gotten far enough to know it will be a Focusrite either Scarlett or Clarett. My piano is a Kawai CA97 and there are stereo (RCA??) cables coming out that look like this in the present mixer (old pic) - yellow and red:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/hxfyy4zlspx4wj5/Mixer1.jpg?dl=0

I've found two configurations from two on-line manuals - in one they're plugged into the back (line in, line out), in the other they're plugged into the front). Which is the right one will determine the "size" of interface I buy.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/ot18086u3fvdtcs/Focusrite%20question.jpg?dl=0

I found a video explaining that line-in is for "hot" signals, and the front is for "low" signals.

What does this mean in terms of my dp?

In my present setup, I have the digital piano, plus an XLR clip-on mike. If the two piano jacks plug into the front, I'd have to get 4i4 (Scarlett) - if they go in the back, I only need 2i2. Would the choice also affect sound quality.

Purpose is mostly recording: also interacting over Zoom.

Signed clueless as usual.
Thanks in advance smile

For Hi-Impedance (hot signal) read this:
https://www.sweetwater.com/insync/hi-z/

Your DP doesn't need Hi-Z inputs but instruments like electric guitar do need that.

If your budget is not tight then 4 inputs for sure.

Back or front does not matter, but if you get a 4x4 interface you have 2 extra ones that you can attach your mic, guitar, PC etc to them without the hassle of removing the others.

Also, take a look at MOTU M4. It has a slight edge over Scarlet (IMHO). The preamps on M4 are superior.


Kawai MP7SE, Yamaha MOTF XF6, Yamaha WX5, Yamaha Pacifica 112v
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
I don't know if this makes a difference. In my screenshot, the one that has a synthesizer plugged into the back, this is for the Clarett rather than the Scarlett which doesn't seem to have two inputs in the back. (but I don't know how, electronics-wise, synthesizers differ from DPs).

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ot18086u3fvdtcs/Focusrite%20question.jpg?dl=0

Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 1,638
A
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
A
Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 1,638
Originally Posted by keystring
I don't know if this makes a difference. In my screenshot, the one that has a synthesizer plugged into the back, this is for the Clarett rather than the Scarlett which doesn't seem to have two inputs in the back. (but I don't know how, electronics-wise, synthesizers differ from DPs).

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ot18086u3fvdtcs/Focusrite%20question.jpg?dl=0


It doesn't matter how you set up your rig. Usually, the only thing that matters is that you connect the inputs sequentially and accordingly.

1-2, 3-4 are usually can be paired together to act as a stereo input.

So you will divide the number of your ins by 2 to get the number of stereo ins. So if you have 6 ins, it is 6 mono ins and 3 stereo ins.


Kawai MP7SE, Yamaha MOTF XF6, Yamaha WX5, Yamaha Pacifica 112v
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 134
Full Member
Online Content
Full Member
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 134
Just on the level question...

Yes, but.

ALL mics are low level.

Some mics ("dynamic mics") rely strictly on their mechanical movement.

"Condensor" mics use a diaphragm in conjunction with charged plates.
For those plates to be charged, the mic requires some electric power. This is typically 48 Volts fed to the mic through the actual mic cord, and is called "phantom" power.
Condensor mics are nevertheless low output and require a preamp. But their "low level" output is typically a bit higher than that of a dynamic mic. My Shure SM58 mic is rated at -54.5 dBV output, for example. A condensor mic like the AT2020 is rated at -37dB. Lower (negative) numbers mean a higher output voltage.

Both dynamic and condensor mics require a preamp.

I had an old SM58 dynamic mic lying around. When I tried using it for Zoom calls with my Scarlett 4i4 I found that the Scarlett's mic preamp didn't have enough oomph (that's a technical term!) for that mic. The kindly Focusrite support guy suggested I buy a condensor mic instead. Rather than buying a different mic, I bought a FetHead inline preamp for some additional oomph.

None of this impacts your piano use, but your statement about pushing a button for your XLR has to do with the phantom power for the type of mic you're using - it is not switching the preamp in your mixer or interface. Either type of mic is still low level and requires a preamp stage. (Or more than one, in my case.)

On the front jacks on the Scarlett - if you plug in an XLR it "knows" that you're using a mic.
If you use a 1/4 inch plug, on the other hand, it doesn't know whether this is line level or the lower level from a guitar.
So if you plug in a 1/4 inch plug, you need to make sure that you do NOT have the INST selected. If you DO have INST selected, it WILL get boosted (even though you're not using the XLR connection).

Actually, I am using the front inputs because I'm using the fixed-level output from my piano and this way I can use the gain knobs on the Scarlett rather than having to use the software.

I'm probably being confusing on the whole balanced/unbalanced thing as well. Yes, left is left and right is right!

One other difference between 2i2 and 4i4 is buttons.
The 2i2 has buttons for INST, the "AIR" option for the mic preamps, and "direct monitor". For the 4i4 you need to use their software control panel to switch those. Not a problem for me because I set them the way I want them and leave them.

Have you downloaded the user manual from the focusrite website?


Jane - expert on nothing with opinions on everything
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,121
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,121
Originally Posted by keystring
I'm switching from my mixer to an audio interface - have gotten far enough to know it will be a Focusrite either Scarlett or Clarett. My piano is a Kawai CA97 and there are stereo (RCA??) cables coming out that look like this in the present mixer (old pic) - yellow and red:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/hxfyy4zlspx4wj5/Mixer1.jpg?dl=0
No. Look at p.97 here: https://www.kawai-global.com/data/manuals/CA97_CA67_EN_20150316_R102L.pdf. The outputs from your piano are actually 1/4" mono cables, at least that what it seems from reading the manual. You would get a mono signal if you plug into only ONE output from the CA97.
Originally Posted by keystring
I've found two configurations from two on-line manuals - in one they're plugged into the back (line in, line out), in the other they're plugged into the front). Which is the right one will determine the "size" of interface I buy.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/ot18086u3fvdtcs/Focusrite%20question.jpg?dl=0

I found a video explaining that line-in is for "hot" signals, and the front is for "low" signals.

What does this mean in terms of my dp?
Based on what I see here on p.12, https://www.bhphotovideo.com/lit_files/516658.pdf, the design of the Scarlett 2i2 3rd Generation has changed, and there are just 2 smart inputs on the front panel of the 2i2. There's also an explanation of preamp levels, phantom power, etc lower on the same page.

Anyhow - if you're going 3rd generation Scarlett, you'll need the 4i4.
Finally, it was my experience that the Scarlett had driver problems with Windows computers. From what I read, MAC users had no issues, and I got the impression that Focusrite had targeted MAC as their platform of choice, getting around to Windows later. YMMV as we say.
Originally Posted by keystring
In my present setup, I have the digital piano, plus an XLR clip-on mike. If the two piano jacks plug into the front, I'd have to get 4i4 (Scarlett) - if they go in the back, I only need 2i2. Would the choice also affect sound quality.

Purpose is mostly recording: also interacting over Zoom.

Signed clueless as usual.
Thanks in advance smile
Hope this helps.


Andrew Kraus, Pianist
Educated Amateur Tuner/Technician
I Make Music that Lifts People Up & Brings Them Together
Rockville, MD USA
www.AndrewKraus.com
www.YouTube.com/RockvillePianoGuy
Twitter at @IAmAPianist

1929 Steinert 6'10" (Close copy of New York S&S "B")
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
It got later yesterday, and I conked out before being able to reply.

Abdol I seemed to be totally ignoring your input. You gave extra technical info which I read carefully, and thank you.

Re: the MOTU M4 - I did see it recommended here and there.
Originally Posted by Abdol
Also, take a look at MOTU M4. It has a slight edge over Scarlet (IMHO). The preamps on M4 are superior.
I'd read that the Clarett is also superior incl. for preamps (but at quite a price hike) which is why I was looking at the Clarett. The MOTU shows an overseas shipping fee so I'm assuming, China? So what kind of support? If everyone is using Focusrite, there's a reason? Or just a self-perpetuating reputation because "everyone is..." ?

Jane Very helpful as before. You have a great way of breaking things down for the uninitiated.

Originally Posted by Jane4
Actually, I am using the front inputs because I'm using the fixed-level output from my piano and this way I can use the gain knobs on the Scarlett rather than having to use the software.

That makes sense. I got this from the company yesterday: "The quality from both sets of inputs is identical the only difference is the level control. As your digital piano has RCA/phono outputs you might find you likely have to use the front inputs with the gain control as phono outputs are unbalanced and often quieter than standard line level." That matches what you're saying.

(He also said that per my picture I have a 5-pin midi connection, not audio - which I doubt since I see two 5-pin ports, unoccupied, in the piano - and the other end of my cable going into the piano is the usual pointy jack - TS, one stripe, both ends)

Originally Posted by Jane4
The 2i2 has buttons for INST, the "AIR" option for the mic preamps, and "direct monitor". For the 4i4 you need to use their software control panel to switch those. Not a problem for me because I set them the way I want them and leave them.

I'd not like having to use software. But I just looked at pictures. The 4i4 has a button saying 48v -- that would be like the phantom power, and isn't that also what INST is? I don't think I care for AIR, so if the 48v button gives me the phantom power for the XLR mike, then I'd have what I need without having to go to software.

Seeker
Originally Posted by Seeker
No. Look at p.97 here: https://www.kawai-global.com/data/manuals/CA97_CA67_EN_20150316_R102L.pdf. The outputs from your piano are actually 1/4" mono cables, at least that what it seems from reading the manual. You would get a mono signal if you plug into only ONE output from the CA97.
At this point I know they are TS (mono) - yes. I did not think of plugging in only one - just where to plug them (front or back). I was wrong about "RCA" now that i know what they look like.

Originally Posted by Seeker
Based on what I see here on p.12, https://www.bhphotovideo.com/lit_files/516658.pdf, the design of the Scarlett 2i2 3rd Generation has changed, and there are just 2 smart inputs on the front panel of the 2i2. There's also an explanation of preamp levels, phantom power, etc lower on the same page.

I'd browsed through the manual, mostly looking for pictures of connections before. Thank you for pointing out p. 12. There is one bit that confused me there:
If your mic has a jack plug on the end of the cable, it will probably require an adaptor to make it usable with the XLR part of the Combo connector. Inserting the jack plug will configure the preamp with reduced gain, which is likely to be insufficient for the mic (see below). Mics intended for use with computer sound cards may also require a much lower phantom power voltage, so an adaptor specific to the mic type should be obtained in this case.
My "mike" in this case being the two plugs from the piano. But I think they're talking about the XLR feature, as opposed to the gain which Jane4 is applying. (no special adapter needed).

Quote
Finally, it was my experience that the Scarlett had driver problems with Windows computers. From what I read, MAC users had no issues, and I got the impression that Focusrite had targeted MAC as their platform of choice, getting around to Windows later. YMMV as we say.

It was this comment that made me have a second look at Abdol's suggestion of the MOTU. I will be replacing my laptop because it's on its last legs; the replacement will be using Win11.

Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
A question I have not thought to consider is this. Currently I am using a Behringer USB mixer. I was given one as a gift, so I came to use it. I don't know how to use all those knobs; they're permanently set to neutral in the middle, so I'm using the mixer like an audio interface. It's old. I started to get crackles, which get fixed if I jam the piano jacks in more tightly - I guess they get loose over time. The power cord is loose so that I lose power. I decided to replace it. And while searching, I discovered there was such a thing as an audio interface. One thing I liked about interfaces is the housing: I can't stop my mixer from getting dusty between the knobs. So: convenience.

What I don't know is --- assuming that I use the Behringer mixer like an interface (ignore the knobs); what is the quality difference of sound coming into the computer via the mixer vs. an interface such as the Focusrite(s)? Given that the adjustments are being done via Audacity in either case? That would be the hardware part.

Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 1,638
A
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
A
Joined: Apr 2019
Posts: 1,638
Originally Posted by keystring
A question I have not thought to consider is this. Currently I am using a Behringer USB mixer. I was given one as a gift, so I came to use it. I don't know how to use all those knobs; they're permanently set to neutral in the middle, so I'm using the mixer like an audio interface. It's old. I started to get crackles, which get fixed if I jam the piano jacks in more tightly - I guess they get loose over time. The power cord is loose so that I lose power. I decided to replace it. And while searching, I discovered there was such a thing as an audio interface. One thing I liked about interfaces is the housing: I can't stop my mixer from getting dusty between the knobs. So: convenience.

What I don't know is --- assuming that I use the Behringer mixer like an interface (ignore the knobs); what is the quality difference of sound coming into the computer via the mixer vs. an interface such as the Focusrite(s)? Given that the adjustments are being done via Audacity in either case? That would be the hardware part.


MOTUF M4 is in the same class as the Scarlette series. In terms of preamps, M4 as far as I remember is better than Scarlette.

MOTU is a US-based company, Mark of the Unicorn. Back in the day, MOTU and RME were top-of-the-line interfaces that had lowes latencies in Mac OS X. It's not the case anymore but they still make fantastic interfaces.

Although Behringer is among the crappiest/cheapest brands for music production, it beats Steinberg UR-series (Yamaha) in terms of pre-amp quality!!!


If your purpose is to enjoy music, and live performances and you are not a professional musician, you won't(don't) need an audio interface (IMHO). There is a noticeable difference in the quality of the pre-amps if you listen to a cheap digital mixer and something like Scarlette/M4 series, but not noticeable through monitor speakers. That's because you can distinguish the noise levels when you're using your headphones very easy.

In fact, a digital mixer is far more flexible and better than an audio interface when it comes to your scenario! That said, quality digital mixers are very expensive (much cheaper and smaller than a similar analog setup though).

I bought a "cheap" Behringer XR18 and it's a superb mixer, although you need a PC, tablet, or a cellphone to access it:

It is an 18 ins/16 outs USB audio interface! It comes with everything I need for a live performance: Hi-Z, phantom power, 4 effect slots, and gazillions of reverbs, delays, and compressors. I do even have ed-esser and guitar effects!

For home-use and entertainment, an audio interface isn't as versatile as a $500-$700 digital mixer.


Kawai MP7SE, Yamaha MOTF XF6, Yamaha WX5, Yamaha Pacifica 112v
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 134
Full Member
Online Content
Full Member
Joined: Apr 2008
Posts: 134
Originally Posted by keystring
It got later yesterday, and I conked out before being able to reply.


I'd not like having to use software. But I just looked at pictures. The 4i4 has a button saying 48v -- that would be like the phantom power, and isn't that also what INST is? I don't think I care for AIR, so if the 48v button gives me the phantom power for the XLR mike, then I'd have what I need without having to go to software.

NO!

INST says "what's plugged in to the 1/4 inch jack is from a guitar, not line level, so it needs to be amplified more than does line level."

48V says "send 48 Volts of phantom power down the mic line."

Turnips and tamales wink


Jane - expert on nothing with opinions on everything
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 7,068
C
7000 Post Club Member
Offline
7000 Post Club Member
C
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 7,068
Originally Posted by JaneF
Originally Posted by keystring
. . .
I'd not like having to use software. But I just looked at pictures. The 4i4 has a button saying 48v -- that would be like the phantom power, and isn't that also what INST is? I don't think I care for AIR, so if the 48v button gives me the phantom power for the XLR mike, then I'd have what I need without having to go to software.

NO!

INST says "what's plugged in to the 1/4 inch jack is from a guitar, not line level, so it needs to be amplified more than does line level."

48V says "send 48 Volts of phantom power down the mic line."

Turnips and tamales wink

+1.

Sometimes pictures are _not_ worth a thousand words.


. Charles
---------------------------
PX-350 / microKorg XL+ / Pianoteq
Joined: Mar 2022
Posts: 2,092
S
2000 Post Club Member
Online Content
2000 Post Club Member
S
Joined: Mar 2022
Posts: 2,092
Originally Posted by Charles Cohen
Sometimes pictures are _not_ worth a thousand words.

The combination of meaningful pictures and meaningful words can be worth more than each one alone. Even better with audio plus video etc.

Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
Originally Posted by Abdol
In fact, a digital mixer is far more flexible and better than an audio interface when it comes to your scenario! That said, quality digital mixers are very expensive (much cheaper and smaller than a similar analog setup though).

I bought a "cheap" Behringer XR18 and it's a superb mixer, although you need a PC, tablet, or a cellphone to access it:

It is an 18 ins/16 outs USB audio interface! It comes with everything I need for a live performance: Hi-Z, phantom power, 4 effect slots, and gazillions of reverbs, delays, and compressors. I do even have ed-esser and guitar effects!

What I have currently is an aging mixer, a Behringer Q802USB. Recently I ended up with ruined recordings a couple of times due to crackles, which seems to get fixed by jamming the jacks from the piano in firmly - they seem to get loose now; I only just discovered the looseness. I was looking to replace it when I ran into interfaces. Since I don't use all those buttons/controls and the space in between is a dust collector, the closed housing of interfaces seemed a better replacement. That's how I got here. If an interface gives equal or better results it seemed possibly worth it; if not, then not. I came in knowing nothing about them. I have a laptop by the piano, and a desktop for my work.

I've been consulting with a rep of the co. that sells my piano, initially to discuss the jacks. Since they can be dialed to maximum, he believed that their power was sufficient to be attached to the line-in of the Scarlett. But he also pointed out that the mixer that I have is already an interface - just one with more controls.

Quote
If your purpose is to enjoy music, and live performances and you are not a professional musician, you won't(don't) need an audio interface (IMHO).
I'm in a piano forum and largely a student in regard to music. My purpose is to record my music - no live performances. that is both for my enjoyment/sharing, and interacting with my teacher remotely. I got my mixer (interface) specifically because there was a need. Since that involves a microphone plus the two piano jacks, that led to the questions here.

Quote
MOTU is a US-based company, Mark of the Unicorn. Back in the day, MOTU and RME were top-of-the-line interfaces that had lowes latencies in Mac OS X. It's not the case anymore but they still make fantastic interfaces.
My contact mentioned the RME being used personally - well I looked and that thing is $1,200 or more.

My impression right now is that the regular interfaces like MOTU and Scarlett are not better in sound quality than my Behringer mixer (true or false?) so there is no reason to switch. I can control gain going to the line-in from the piano with what I have. The one convenience I see for the closed box interfaces is if you're traveling with them, and that they don't collect dust between all those knobs (which does bug me).

It seems that switching from my mixer to an interface only makes sense if there is a major upgrade in quality, which would be more pricey. I had actually thought that the Clarett might give that because it's supposed to be "better" but can't know if that is so.

Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
OP Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,912
Originally Posted by JaneF
NO!

INST says "what's plugged in to the 1/4 inch jack is from a guitar, not line level, so it needs to be amplified more than does line level."

48V says "send 48 Volts of phantom power down the mic line."

Turnips and tamales wink
Now I got it.
In any case, I don't like that it has to be done via software for the 4i4.

Joined: Mar 2022
Posts: 2,092
S
2000 Post Club Member
Online Content
2000 Post Club Member
S
Joined: Mar 2022
Posts: 2,092
Originally Posted by Abdol
Your DP doesn't need Hi-Z inputs but instruments like electric guitar do need that.

Focusing only on the above comment. I assume that electric guitars don't have high impedance inputs, as the audio waveforms come out of electric guitars ----- not go into them. This is only commenting on that comment. I assume it was a typo only.

Page 1 of 3 1 2 3

Moderated by  Piano World 

Link Copied to Clipboard
(ad)
Best of Piano Buyer
Piano Buyer - Read the Articles, Explore the website
(ad)
PianoDisc

PianoDisc
(ad)
Faust Harrison Pianos
Faust Harrison 100+ Steinway pianos
(ad)
Mason & Hamlin Pianos
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Nature Boy in different keys
by Jt2nd - 08/15/22 07:17 PM
Boston Vertical string breakage
by P W Grey - 08/15/22 04:33 PM
cantabile
by SouthPark - 08/15/22 04:29 PM
Finish on 1963 Kawai 7'4" grand.
by Donald1 - 08/15/22 04:23 PM
Teaching while pursuing non-music degree?
by txpianoplayer - 08/15/22 03:21 PM
Download Sheet Music
Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads
What's Hot!!
FREE June Newsletter is Here!
--------------------
Forums RULES, Terms of Service & HELP
(updated 06/06/2022)
-------------------
Music Store Going Out of Business Sale!
---------------------
Mr. PianoWorld's Original Composition
---------------------
Sell Your Piano on our world famous Piano Forums!
---------------------
Posting Pictures on the Forums
-------------------
ADVERTISE on Piano World
Forum Statistics
Forums43
Topics214,416
Posts3,216,615
Members106,089
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
Please Support Our Advertisers

Faust Harrison 100+ Steinways

Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver

 Best of Piano Buyer

PianoTeq Bechstein
Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads



 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | MapleStreetMusicShop.com - Our store in Cornish Maine


© copyright 1997 - 2022 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5