[ardour-dev] Where to go digital

Mark Knecht markknecht at gmail.com
Mon Mar 6 12:00:05 PST 2006

On 3/6/06, Paul Winkler <pw_lists at slinkp.com> wrote:
> On Mon, Mar 06, 2006 at 08:23:42AM -0800, Mark Knecht wrote:
> > Or any mic pre using the wonderful RFC compressor is another great
> > choice. The RFC has been around for years, has a great reputation, is
> > very easy to use and only costs about $200 IIRC.
> >
> > Using an analog conpressor is always preferable in my experience.
> I'm assuming you mean RNC?

I did. Sorry for my bad typing.

> It's a great compressor, but it's not really a peak limiter.  I do often
> use it for input, but that's partly because smooth headphone levels help
> me get better vocal performance.  It reduces the self-consciousness of
> the singer.  The fact that I have fewer things needing attention during
> mixdown is a nice bonus too ;-)

Exactly. I don't use peak limiters as much as I use compressors. I
record a number of Big Bands. They tend to have a lot of dynamic range
and the RNC does a great job or letting me get higher average levels.

> I do'nt have a limiter and I don't miss it. I'd just get an ADC with a
> sufficiently low noise floor and set levels conservatively.  When you
> have 100 dB of SNR at the converter, you can get away with pretty low
> levels. Just turn down the output of the mic pre.  Noise from the mic
> pre and mic is not exacerbated by doing this, because you're turning
> that down too.  You do lose some resolution, but I don't lose sleep over
> that.

I agree.

> Of course, professionals might be working with tighter requirements or
> more extreme acoustic signals than I am.  But my Delta has specs of 99
> dB SNR at the input and I've found that to be quite forgiving, and those
> are pretty cheap nowadays. If you splurge on Mytek or something you can
> get that up to ~120 dB.  That is quite a lot of headroom.
> I have much bigger problems with things like ambient noises while
> recording very quiet sounds.

Exactly. My experience also.

- Mark
> --
> Paul Winkler
> http://www.slinkp.com
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