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My Recording "Flat-Lines"

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2005 2:28 am    Post subject: My Recording "Flat-Lines" Reply with quote

Any body come across this problem....

Have just removed the old soundcard SB Audigy 2 and replaced it with a Terratec Phase 22. However recording on CEP2 the sound level will not go over -6db even though the Roland MMP-2 preamp level metre tells me that the level IS above -6db. It "Flat-lines" on the CEP2 display.

This has happened before with the old sound card but was able to rectify this problem by fiddling with the 3.5 stereo input jack while it was plugged into the analog input on the s/card. I have tried numerous problem solving techniques including the former as well as re-installing software, soundcard, changing the pci slot and rerouting digital and analog inputs.

Another problem is that I am only getting sound return from the left channel.

I used to run my microphones (NT3, NT1, NTK and MC01) through my Behringer Eurorack MX602A. The whole system was analog inputs and outputs which was fine most of the time but I was getting a lot of unwanted noise through the mixer into my v/o's. Now however, as well as getting the new s/card I also purchased the preamp (which I was told would fix my noise problems).

I am new to all of this with the preamp included and I am wondering if these problems are related to these new pieces of equipment?

I am, I would say, "technically challenged" in this area but feel that this problem is fixable with advice/assistance from those who know what they're doing. Smile

Thank you in advance,


Last edited by Debbie on Sun Jul 03, 2005 5:20 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2005 3:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have you checked to be sure that the noise isn't from a playback volume on your computer? Click that little "speaker" or "volume" icon on the lower right part of your screen and start lowering volume controls and see if the th problem goes away.

As far as the mixer is concerned. I listen through the return of my mixer from the computer. I have to confess that I only use the mixer for listening and not for recording. I go from my mic to the processor right to the computer.

Have you tried to see if there is a bad button on your mixer? Sometimes a "line in" also acts as a "phono" input. The button on my mixer is very touchy and sometimes can make the volume lower or a channel drop out. (It's a very old mixer made by some company with no vowels in the name.) <g>

Also, have you tried swapping cables to be sure a short hasn't developed in one of them?

Good luck with this! I'm sorry you're having this trouble.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2005 5:07 am    Post subject: problems Reply with quote

Hi Bill,
Thank you very much for your reply.

I don't know what's wrong with this ... it must be me or the way we've set it up.

I am going to call the place I purchased the preamp from tomorrow morning and see if we can get it sorted.

It seems that I'm able to record, BUT, the level in CEP2 won't go above the -6db and once it hits that level it just flatlines. There are peaks and valleys under that but it won't go any further.

I really need it to work (ah ha, don't we all) Smile and it seems that this should be simple but alas it hasn't turned out that way at all.

The way it is set up is that the mic cable goes into the 'mic in' on the preamp and the preamp "line out" goes into the sound card. The mixer "Main Out" L and R go into the amplifier and the "Line In" 5/6 L and R go into the sound card.

Do you think the problems could be coming from the above setup?

Thanks heaps,
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2005 5:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If I understand what you mean by flat lining, it sound to me like CEP is introducing some "brickwall" limiting. Nothing above -6db shall pass. As it's on, should be easy to remove in "record properties"?
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2005 7:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is the connection balanced? You're meters will go crazy if the input isn't configured properly for the software. Also, -6db is not a problem and is the general range you should be at for digital recording.

Also, more soundcards these days have software mixers specificially for the sound card. Some contain digital limiter before the converter to reduce digital clipping.

When all else fails, RTFM.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2005 6:11 am    Post subject: oh my goodness - i'm ready to strangle myself Reply with quote

Hi again,

Just when I thought I had it all sorted out ... along comes another problem to throw me to the wall. This is really (I mean REALLY) starting to give me the proverbials!

I am getting sound out of the mixer and out of the headphones which are plugged into the mixer.

I am getting a signal through the preamp from the mic.

I am getting a record-in level through CEP2.


The level through CEP2 is still VERY low. Even going into multitrack view to record (enabling me to play around with the input level) does not seem to help (I thought it did, but it doesn't).


When I record, the waveform looks frikkin weird! The only way I can explain it is to say it is not symetrical and is not steady on the centre line. Also, the recording level is around about -30db!!!!!

I think I'm going to cry. I would post a picture of the waveform but my brain is so frazzled I can't even remember how to do that. What's more, I kicked my computer last night so it now has a horrid noise coming out of it (fan failure error message which doesn't surprise me).

OMG, just kill me now.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2005 7:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It appears that your "setup" or "software" problem has just migrated into a "hardware" problem. As Frank has learned... never bite the microphone. And now you have learned... never kick a computer. I wish I had some advice, but I'm not that much into the techs of your dilema. :cry: Sometimes when you're too close to the problem, it helps to get away from it (take a walk) to think things out more clearly. Good luck.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2005 7:59 am    Post subject: kicking computers Reply with quote

Hi Bailey,

Thank you - I hope good luck will fix it.

Taking a walk - I wish it were that easy. While I don't disagree with your suggestion, unfortunately I have done so and it hasn't helped. This 'problem' has manifested into a major dilemma. I know that's partly my own fault but even so ...

as far as kicking the computer goes - while I would never have considered doing so before, kicking it again seemed to lodge the affected part back into place so that's all good for now. Smile I love my computer!

This will turn out right, I know it will ...

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