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Audio Interfaces

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thesoundposition View Drop Down
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    Posted: 06 Jan 2010 at 4:02pm
I've been redesigning my studio basically from scratch. I have my laptop loaded with Ableton Live 8 and connected to the Akai APC40 controller. I have some studio monitors that serve as an audio interface, however yesterday my music partner received his Kaoss Pad and we realized it has RCA analog inputs and outputs. The studio monitor has an input, but the only output is the headphone jack. 

I today bought an M-Audio MobilePre USB audio interface to be able to send audio from Ableton into the Kaoss pad, and to send audio back into the audio interface from the Kaoss pad to go back into Ableton. Do you think this will work, and is it a good idea?

Thanks.

Your new student,
Michael
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RobJones View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RobJones Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Jan 2010 at 5:14pm
Hey Michael,

Welcome to Ableton Courses! 8)

So, at the moment, your setup would be audio o/ps coming out of the MobilePre on unbalanced jacks (I couldn't tell whether they're balanced or unbalanced so I'm assuming unbalanced, meaning just Tip and Sleeve - let me know if you're unsure of what this means) then going into the kaos pad as RCA phonos, then coming out of the kaos pad as rca phono and into your monitors. What inputs do your monitors have? 

This sounds okay. The Kaos pad is more of a performance device than a production one so I'm not sure about how clean it will be if all the effects are bypassed. In other words, if you just want a flat response so you can hear your mix coming out of Ableton properly, you'll just want to send the signal straight through the pad without it doing anything - this is almost certainly possible but you need to check. It could be better to go straight from the MobilePre into the monitors. Your monitors are active/powered yes?

Cheers,

Rob
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thesoundposition View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote thesoundposition Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Jan 2010 at 5:31pm
Hi Rob,

Thanks for the quick reply and warm welcome! The MobilePre has unbalanced jacks.  The monitors are active/powered. http://www.alesis.com/contentmgr/showdetails.php/id/1157/tt/5

Here are the inputs on the monitors:
  • Two ¼” phone jacks inputs
  • Stereo 1/8” TRS mini-jack input
  • Stereo RCA inputs
 I see what you mean about the Kaoss pad being more of a performance device than a production one. My friend is interested in using it as a stand alone instrument, more than as a DSP effects unit. He didn't seem as interested in tweaking the sounds from audio inputs, than he was interested in making the Kaoss pad makes sounds come out it on it's own. I think he wants to use the Korg Wavedrum with the Kaoss pad as an instrument. My role is to master Ableton live, and use controllers and synthesizers, while his role is to perform his Korg Wavedrum and Kaoss pad.

Cheers,
Michael
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RobJones View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RobJones Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Jan 2010 at 6:45pm
No worries!

So you can go straight from your interface to your monitors, or through the Kaos pad. Try both and see if there's any difference in quality. It will add some low level noise going through the pad but probably an undetectable amount.

Cheers,

Rob


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote RobJones Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Jan 2010 at 7:09pm
I'm not sure how you both playing with the one setup will work though. I'd have to look into it but I'm not sure whether you can send a signal through a Kaos pad without processing it in some way - adding effects etc. In other words, I don't know whether it can be used as a mixer, e.g. using it to create a new signal (as a standalone instrument) which can be combined with a signal connected to its inputs (from Live) and then sent out the outputs to connected monitors. 

If you want to do this, then it's probably better to connect the Kaos pad to the line input on the MobilePre and mix the signals together that way. It doesn't look like the MobilePre has latency-free mixing though so you may have to route the Kaos pad into Live if you do it this way. This will add a little latency but Live has ways of accounting for that....

Let me know how you get on...

Cheers,

Rob
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thesoundposition View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote thesoundposition Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Jan 2010 at 8:39pm
Hi Rob,

When we first played around with the Kaoss pad, we noticed that the line-in signal sent into the pad did not seem to have effects applied to it. It's as if the effects were added additionally on top of the audio signal. I kept wondering if there was an equivalent of a dry/wet knob on it. Supposedly the effects are supposed to be applied to the line-in signal, but when no signal was sent into the pad, and the touchpad was pressed, filter sounds and other effects could be heard. The signal sent thru the pad seems mostly (almost entirely) unprocessed. 

I think the plan will be to route all audio inputs (Kaoss Pad + Wavedrum, or Novation KS Synth + Microphone) going into the MobilePre - then into Ableton, where the latency settings can be tweaked to eliminate most latency during recording/sampling.  I use VST synths like Spectrasonics mostly, so MIDI is what I usually work with and saves me a whole lot of hassle in sequencers. This issue arose because my music friend has to deal with analog audio using his equipment.

By the way I have a friend that lives in Grove Hill, Brighton named Tim Rifat. ;)

Cheers!
Michael
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thesoundposition View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote thesoundposition Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Jan 2010 at 9:17pm
Ok, my friend is over here now and we figured it out. The "Direct" connection setting on the back of the pad applies the effects directly to a signal, and the "Send" connection setting passes only the effect out of the Kaoss pad. Essentially right now my friend is making interesting sounds using the "Send connection". I'll keep you posted.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ouou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Apr 2010 at 5:23am

 

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