Recording a full drumset with a LAYLA3G

Discussion in 'Recording/Live Sound' started by Brusco, Apr 9, 2005.


  1. Brusco

    Brusco Member

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    I'd like to record a full drumset using six mics getting at least six tracks of drums.

    I'm close to buying a Mac G5 and was thinking about getting the Echo Layla3G 8-channel interface. I've always used mic cables with XLR connectors. For some reason I believe I'm getting a better signal to tape this way. The Layla only has two XLR inputs and the remaining four are 1/4" balanced inputs.

    I always thought that XLR are balanced and 1/4" are unbalanced.
    I'm a bit confused about this.. I guess I will now have to by 4 new cables with XLR to 1/4" connectors. Does anyone know, will this degrade the signal in any way using XLR to 1/4" cables?

    Do I need a Presonus Firepod or something with more XLR inputs to do what I'm doing? Maybe I won't here a difference either way.
    Thanks for any info.
     
  2. Bassomatic

    Bassomatic Silver Supporting Member

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    AFAIK no, as both are fully balanced. Only the connectors vary.
     
  3. LSchefman

    LSchefman Supporting Member

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    There are two kinds of 1/4 inch connectors, TS and TRS. TRS are balanced.

    The only difference between XLR and TRS connectors in terms of signal is that XLRs have more contact area, and for that reason are thought to be more pro. But it really doesn't matter in practical terms, unless you have read the article on Gilmour's studio, where they apparently spent hours listening to connector brands to figure out which ones sound better.

    That, I have to admit, may be a bit on the detailed side. LOL ;)
     
  4. jokerjkny

    jokerjkny Member

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    i just recorded my friend' playing drums on our friend's demo with my Firepod.

    we had a stereo Rode NT4 overhead, SM57 on the snare, Rode NT5 on the hihats, and an Audix D4 on the bass. thru our snake worked like a charm. also, sounded great. quite happy with the results.

    easy peasy with Sonar 4.

    my particular FP's knobs are a little flimsy, but oddly my Eureka preamp is very well built. best to open and inspect the unit before you plunk down the cash.
     
  5. GuitslingerTim

    GuitslingerTim Member

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    I have XLR and TRS jacks in my breakout box, but the XLR are for microphones and the TRS are for line-level inputs.
     
  6. Brusco

    Brusco Member

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    Is TRS something relatively new? I don't remember ever hearing of it -I've been out of the recording loop since my ADAT started giving me errors about three years ago.

    I still don't get the whole balanced vs unbalanced thing.

    I like the quality of the Echo Audi stuff but have no use for the optical jack since I decided on a G5 (it comes with optical jacks). Is there another interface that can serve me better in the same price range? The Firepod is the only one I know of that has more than 2 XLR's inputs.
     
  7. drbob1

    drbob1 Silver Supporting Member

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    Balanced means that the signal is split (using a center tapped transformer?) into positive and negative parts. When these are recombined at the other end of the cable, the noise that may have been introduced by stray static and flourescent lights, is cancelled when the phase on 1/2 the signal is reversed-thus you can have quiet cable runs longer than 20'. TRS is just a smaller/cheaper connector, so attractive to manufacturers trying to cut costs. A more important question is whether the TRS channels have proper EQ and mic preamps?

    Mic/line depends on the expected input impedance of the signal and how much amplification is needed/available to get it up to 0 dB. Mic signals obviously need up to 60 dB of amplification to get them up to line levels, and expect lower input impedance (I always get confused by this part-why lower impedance for mics, doesn't this mean more signal loss thru the cable?).
     
  8. MichaelK

    MichaelK Member

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    Go to http://www.sweetwater.com/insync/ and do searches for TRS, balanced, impedance, etc. They do a nice job of explaining in clear language. I use that site all the time for all kinds of questions. Also all kinds of techniques are archived there, questions about digital audio, tons of great information. I've gotten much more accurate, faster and more useful answers by searching InSync than by searching other sites or asking on forums.
     
  9. Brusco

    Brusco Member

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    Thanks everyone for your help.
    And MK for the link to insync.
     
  10. thesedaze

    thesedaze Member

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    FWIW, the pre's on the echo products outperform those on the protools LE systems in my opinion, although....the support for echo products is less than helpful. While digidesign's support team itself isn't the greatest, there are a lot of people trained in that area to answer questions....Being that the Echo products aren't integrated systems, each question is completely relative to how your system is setup, and troubleshooting can be a bit of a problem.

    I'm not sure about the Layla3G, but I remember with the other layla's, it was a pain to hookup more than one system (if you need more inputs).

    Their new firewire units look pretty intriguing, though.

    edit: The Layla3G's inputs were designed for use with a board. The board will either have direct channel outs, or aux sends which use TRS cables. Typically, you'd get a 8 channel TRS snake that went from the aux section of the board to the back of the Layla3G's inputs.
     
  11. jokerjkny

    jokerjkny Member

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    :dude
     

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