DI's for Synths

Discussions on sound production outside the synthesizer such as mixing, processing, recording, editing and mastering.
mankindjj
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DI's for Synths

Post by mankindjj » Mon Jan 19, 2009 1:47 am

Hi all,

I have a collection of vintage synths that I use for home recording only. My question is what should I have between the synths and the mixer? I use 2 MOTU 8PRE's and Logic 8 with the output going to a small Mackie for monitoring. I have some light compression inserted at the console, but impedance wise, should I be using a direct box and going into the console via balanced XLR? I heard of people using tube DI's and was just wondering if that is necessary or what benefit it offers.

Does anyone here have any experience with this type of thing?

My current hardware synths are:

SE Omega 8
SE SE-1X
Oberheim Matrix 12
Oberheim OB-Xa
Ensoniq TS-10
Roland JD-800
Roland V-Synth
Kurzweil K2661
Kurzweil PC-2x as controller

Thanks in advance! :)

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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by widdly » Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:13 am

I think tube DI's are a bit of a wank. If you want tube colouring, get a tube preamp and a normal DI. That way you can get the tubey sound on mics and di'ed stuff. Plus you will be able to use your DI at rehearsal studios or on stage without worrying about it breaking.

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tallowwaters
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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by tallowwaters » Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:33 am

Wrong forum
Brains can be used like a "stress ball," but only once.

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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by divineaudio » Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:55 am

why don't you just go straight into your motu? less stuff in the signal path.

or use the line inputs on the mackie.
Last edited by divineaudio on Mon Jan 19, 2009 4:00 am, edited 1 time in total.

rjd2
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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by rjd2 » Mon Jan 19, 2009 4:00 am

things i have, and have tried with or without in signal path:

radial JDI DI's
RCA BA-1A tube pres
apogee rosetta converter
new/old limiters

for synths, i would say the biggest difference i saw in sound was the converters. the JDI's bring out hi end, but
its very subtle. i think money is best spent on either a better converter, or a new instrument, IMO.

mankindjj
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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by mankindjj » Mon Jan 19, 2009 2:33 pm

How is this the wrong forum? Asking about vintage synths and what to use to sweeten up their signal path is totally a legitimate question for this forum. If you don't like the question mind your own business and don't answer it "Talloween" or whatever your name is..

Thanks to everyone else for their "useful" input. 8)

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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by Stab Frenzy » Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:17 pm

mankindjj wrote:How is this the wrong forum? Asking about vintage synths and what to use to sweeten up their signal path is totally a legitimate question for this forum. If you don't like the question mind your own business and don't answer it "Talloween" or whatever your name is..
Because this kind of thing goes in the Sound Production forum. You're new here so it's excusable that you didn't realise this was the wrong place for it. It's less excusable that you're giving attitude to one of VSEs moderators so early in your time here...

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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by tallowwaters » Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:49 pm

mankindjj wrote:How is this the wrong forum? Asking about vintage synths and what to use to sweeten up their signal path is totally a legitimate question for this forum. If you don't like the question mind your own business and don't answer it "Talloween" or whatever your name is..

Thanks to everyone else for their "useful" input. 8)
This goes in the Sound Production forum. Since you don't think that rule applies to you, and you decided to make this a personal matter, perhaps a week long ban will help you decide which battles to pick and choose in the future.

Just so you know, signing up under a different account will lead to permanent banning.
Brains can be used like a "stress ball," but only once.

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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by JSRockit » Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:55 pm

I'm currently in the process of trying a few things...

For my stereo digital synths (Monomachine), I'm currently trying a cheap TL Audio Fatman 1 Tube Compressor to try to take the edge off the MnM. For anything Mono (888, x0xb0x), I'm going through a Radial JDI into the Mic input of a Great River ME-1NV. I then record with an Apogee Duet. Once I finish some stuff, I'll let you know what I think if you are still interested. However, my skills will inevitably f**k this all up. :lol:
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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by JSRockit » Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:55 pm

divineaudio wrote:why don't you just go straight into your motu? less stuff in the signal path.

or use the line inputs on the mackie.
Because it sounds generic probably.... just a guess.
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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by madtheory » Mon Jan 19, 2009 6:44 pm

Use unbalanced line input. Most DI boxes have a high input impedance, this makes highish output impedance gear like synths sound dull. You're also attenuating with the DI then making up the gain again with the mic pre. So your adding noise too.

If you want warmth, use one of the many harmonic distortion plugins that are now available. Massey Tape Head is great, Digidesign Tape is super, and the Cranesong tape sims are gorgeous.

Yes, I agree, tube DI is a bit silly on keys, slightly less silly on other instruments, given that you can get the same tone with full recall using a selection of plugins instead. It's just harmonic distortion and/ or eq.

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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by Jack Spider » Mon Jan 19, 2009 7:56 pm

Any topics relating to that which comes after the synth - fx/eq/amplification etc. go in Sound Production. This is clearly explained for all in the rules - I suggest everyone become acquainted with them before posting.
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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by Hybrid88 » Wed Jan 21, 2009 8:32 am

Hi, :D

Yeah, done a bit of research on this myself. Seeing as some of your synths are stereo you either need two DI's or one DI with two seperate inputs. My suggestions would be products such as the ADL Labs ADL-300G (Stereo), Phoenix nice DI (Stereo), Avalon U5 (Mono), Summit TD-100 (Mono) or the Speck Electronics Mic Pre 5.0 (Mono). All of these are excellent products and should help to give a fantastic CD ready tone for your Keyboards.

Hybrid88 :wink:

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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by madtheory » Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:49 pm

Hybrid88 wrote: should help to give a fantastic CD ready tone for your Keyboards.
Sounds good, but it's not actually correct...

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Re: DI's for Synths

Post by Hybrid88 » Wed Jan 21, 2009 3:34 pm

Oh not more arguments... [-X
Last edited by Hybrid88 on Wed Jan 21, 2009 3:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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