Recording but not on a PC

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VikingBlues
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Recording but not on a PC

Post by VikingBlues »

Hi Guys! :wave:

Sorry - been a bit distracted and busy and having fun selling and buying gear and not enough time to browse the forum.

As you'll have noticed I have a bit of a hate-hate relationship with my computer and how it likes to make recording life difficult. I've looked at possibilities of a good computer just geared up for recording, or (gulp!) a Mac - but funds don't allow at the moment.

I've decided to dabble a bit in recording by other means. I haven't gone the whole hog (yet!) - I once had a Tascam DP-01 FX and I found it very unintuitive and I ended up put off multitracks. So I've gone half way house with a ...
Boss BR-80 Micro
Boss BR-80 Micro
100_0342.JPG (148.91 KiB) Viewed 10131 times
I did end up looking at loads of fully blown multi-track CD writing beasts on e-bay, but couldn't bring myself to risk it. If things go well with teh BR-80 though ... well, maybe ... :icon_whoknows:

Only had the thing 24 hours or so but here's a couple of samples (I'm not trying to do anything music wise and there's bum notes a plenty). Same backing track - from Blues Guitar Master Course on both recordings:-

download/file.php?id=2111
This is the PRS straight into the BR80 using the BR80s amp and fx sims. Not too bad - though I struggled for enough natural sounding sustain.

download/file.php?id=2110
This is the Hagstrom through the VibroChamp and microphone recorded into the BR80 with no use of its fx and sims. Not a particularly good microphone though.

Please bear in mind it's eearly days yet - I've not looked at all the mixing and mastering options and all the fine tuning that the BR-80 has on offer.

On the plus side it has (so far) been quite user friendly - certainly way more intuitive than the Tascam was way back when.

I've had a brief try at its e-band function, which was quite fun. I've not tried the live-recording mode with it's inbuilt condenser microphones yet.

Now .... I promise I'll now have time to go and listen to that backlog in the blues room over the next day or or so. :big_smile: :away:
Attachments


BR80 Test PRS DI into BR80 from guitar
B Blues BR80Test PRS BR80 DI.mp3 - (5.02 MiB)


BR80 Test Hagstrom Vibrochamp Microphone
B Blues BR80Test Hag Vibro Mic.mp3 - (5.02 MiB)

An improv a day keeps the demons at bay!
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tytlblues
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by tytlblues »

Hey VB...this little unit might not have the flexibility of a PC for recording, but the sound quality I think is quite nice!! The second track recorded with the mic I think is also nice.....almost a BB king, older classic blues type of sound! Really, if you had come out with that tone on the old recording DAW, I would have thought it quite nice :)


By the way, nicely done song also...may have been a sound test, but still a nice melodic sounding peice.


OK, as I listen now......I really prefer the the mic'ed up recording much better.
Tytlblues

" A blues guitarist plays 3 chords in front of thousands of people.......a Jazz guitarist plays thousands of chords in front of 3 people"
MichaelRobinson
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by MichaelRobinson »

Well, well, VB.........................It sounds OK to me. The mic's is no problem for me.
As tytle say. It sound much BB King, Thrill is gone. Right ? It may be a test but youre playing is good in any way.

Overall. The gear is working well and pickup what you play very well.
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VikingBlues
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by VikingBlues »

Thanks for giving a listen and commenting guys. :D

Nice to know I'm not deluding myself - it's easy to try to kid yourself a new piece of gear is better than it really is to justify the expenditure to yourself.

The BT is pretty much a "Thrill is Gone" backing I'll agree. Which lends itself to an improv sounding a bit BB King'ish, which you both mentioned. I've never really got the hang of BB's major / minor blend that is his trademark, though I was playing a lot in boxes 3 and 2, which I believe puts me in line with his favoured notes when he's in minor mode - maybe that helped. :icon_whoknows:

I'm relieved to hear you preferring the mic'ed up recording. I'm not disliking the sound I got with the BR80s own sim/fx on the DI recording. But I was finding it difficult to get a sound that I was 100% happy with - it is definitely more coloured, more compressed, and as I said in my first post a bit short on natural sustain. I did tweak the sound a fair bit from the factory setting too - TBH none of the factory settings in the blues section worked for me and generally most had way too much distortion. But that overdone distortion's a problem I have with factory settings on pretty well every multi-fx pedal / amp sim gear I've ever had.

So far the mic'ed up sound seems much quieter and free of buzz than when using the computer for a mic recording - if that improvement turns out to be the case I'll be very pleased. :dance: However I'll still need to try the DI route but using the Vox Tonelab LE and the Boss FBM-1 for sound shaping.

The BR-80 doesn't take the computer out of the process as much as I would like, but I knew that before I got it - the choice was a compromise and I partly got it for the "fun" aspects of it's design and capabilities. And I don't know whether I'll try the BR-80 as a computer interface - maybe using my Samplitude 16 DAW but it also comes with a copy of Cakewalk Sonar X1 LE. To produce an mp3 recording from the BR-80 you have to transfer WAV files to the computer and then convert them to mp3 format which is a bit of a pest.
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MichaelRobinson
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by MichaelRobinson »

I have notice that many of us in this forum are perfectionists. Maby it's the search for the perfect sound. To me it's the issue. Listning and try to find "THE" sound.
But as I allready said your new gear works well, so don't worry to much about it.
There is a thing I wonder about regarding youre computer and the problems you have with it. I have a ordernary PC and Reaper as DAW and it newer fail. Maby you should try an other DAW ??
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VikingBlues
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by VikingBlues »

MichaelRobinson wrote:IThere is a thing I wonder about regarding youre computer and the problems you have with it. I have a ordernary PC and Reaper as DAW and it newer fail. Maby you should try an other DAW ??
Thanks for the thought MR - and it's a sensible suggestion. :thumbsup:

But ... I'm afraid I've tried Ableton, Reaper, Sony Acid Music Studio and one that I can't remember now. Ableton and the one I can't remember wouldn't work at all. The other two worked OK but gave me no benefits over Samplitude 16. I think they're all limited by the lack of resources that I can channel to them from my laptop - I had no problems with the previous desktop PC that ran under XP - it's very aggravating. I also feel a chunk of the problems are caused in trying to get an interface that will function properly. I've tried two others apart from the Alesis iO-2, and the Alesis is the only one that's worked.

Some of the problem is quite probably my ignorance - but I no longer have the patience to spends days / weeks struggling with software / hardware compatibilty issues and trawling the internet trying to find answers / solutions. I'd rather be playing and enjoying my guitars.

Ideally I need a computer that's just used for music recording and does not have it's resources continually redirected for doing all those things in the background that a Vista machine ends up doing after a few years. Interestingly you can get a PC specially configured for being a recording sysyem. They cost the same sort of amount as a Mac .... OUCH!!!! :eye_rub:

Then again, if bought new, a proper quality stand alone multitracker will cost that same sort of level. Ho hum. :sad:
An improv a day keeps the demons at bay!
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VikingBlues
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by VikingBlues »

You can record on the BR-80 in the multitrack recorder mode. You can also record in "Live" mode - just a one off all at once recording. You can also record while jamming in the e-band section.

Just had a go late last night ( :yawn: ) at the BR-80 doing a recording while using the e-band function. Quite fun. :big_smile:

Though you need to use software to convert a recording in e-band mode into WAV format on the computer. Then of course you have to use something to convert the WAV file to mp3 - bit convoluted but it seems to work.

The same software to use to Import BTs into e-band. I take it this is the way the real e-band machine works - do I recall Tytl having one of those?

Anyway - proof of the experiment is in the blues room - "VB goes a bit Up-Tempo". Listen at your peril. :nuts:
An improv a day keeps the demons at bay!
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VikingBlues
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by VikingBlues »

Thought things were going too well.

Had a good run of successes .... but now getting the famous "Drive Busy" message when trying to record in e-Band mode!

So - Troubleshooting section of manual looked at.
1) If I was in multi-track mode this could mean playing back too many tracks (on an 8 track recorder??????!!!!!!).
2) If I was joining short phrases of data together it could mean too many phrases - I'm not doing that,
3) The only other option in the manual is the SD card isn't fast enough.

Does the manual say how fast it should be? ..... NO! :sad:
The manual refers to the website for details of compatible cards so I had a look. Could I find anything on how fast a card should be .... NO!! :roll:

Looking on old forum posts with the old BR model series it looks like the way to find out what cards work right is to wait for mugs (sorry - purchasers) of the equipment to try different cards and complain on the forum if they don't work. Am I impressed .... NO!!! :angry:

Oh what fun! I have a feeling I'll be optimistically re-formatting the card and having to restore everything onto it in the vague hope that'll cure it. :icon_whoknows:
An improv a day keeps the demons at bay!
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HalfBlindLefty
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by HalfBlindLefty »

Did I say I like this ? nope, I though so... good recordings on a great gadget :)

about the card, I haven't had any issues with the BR yet, but I don't record many tracks at all. I use it ti record the bands rehearsals and use it when I can't have a amp around. I do keep my SD card fairly empty. when a recording is done it gets transfered to my pc and deleted from the card.
I use 2 GB cards and the original 512MB all work well.
A long time ago, in the old forum : Registered: Mon, 27 Nov 2006. Wonder were the other old members all went....
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MojoJim
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by MojoJim »

I looked into SD cards when I bought my snapshot camera. As I remember, SD cards are rated by class according to read/write speed. I seem to remember that Class 6 was the fastest type of card.

As you shop for SD cards the description should indicate the speed or class of the card. I bought the fastest one so I could record short videos with my camera.

I could be wrong about this - it's just what I think I remember.
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VikingBlues
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by VikingBlues »

HalfBlindLefty wrote:I do keep my SD card fairly empty. when a recording is done it gets transfered to my pc and deleted from the card.
Thanks for that comment - I mulled it over and thought .... why not! I deleted all the recordings that were on the BR-80. I then tried a recording in e-Band again - success - no problem at all. But shame to have a 8Gb card and be having to delete stuff when it only has 1.3Gb used. No problem deleting them as I transfer them to the computer to finish them and I'm not looking to do anything more to them on the BR-80..

I do hope there's not one of these issues with not being able to fully use the capacity of the card as I'm intending to put more backing tracks on it.
MojoJim wrote:I looked into SD cards when I bought my snapshot camera. As I remember, SD cards are rated by class according to read/write speed. I seem to remember that Class 6 was the fastest type of card.

As you shop for SD cards the description should indicate the speed or class of the card.
Thank you for that information. I believe you are correct. I mentioned it to my eldest son, who is into computing stuff and animations and video creation etc., and he agreed with what you said. It seems there's usually somewhere on the card what looks like a letter C (for "class") with a number inside it. The higher that number the faster the card.

I did e-mail Andertons which was where I bought the BR-80. How about this guys ..... e-mailed them just after 8 in the evening last night. Got a reply just before 10 this morning from their guy that is the Roland/Boss Product Specialist for Andertons! I'm very impressed with that. :thumbsup: He was doubtful it was a speed issue caused my problem. But it's difficult for me to tell how the 8Gb card Andertons sent me (with a 4 inside the C) compares for speed with the one that came with the BR-80 as that factory supplied one doesn't have a rating shown on it at all!
.....................................

ANYWAY - GOOD ... back to working all right again. :dance:
.....................................
An improv a day keeps the demons at bay!
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ElMano
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by ElMano »

Looks like an Awsome machine to me
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7p099o7gKXo
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HalfBlindLefty
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by HalfBlindLefty »

@VB, yes it's a shame and what I do isn't a solution to me. It is a work around to avoid the issue.
A long time ago, in the old forum : Registered: Mon, 27 Nov 2006. Wonder were the other old members all went....
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VikingBlues
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by VikingBlues »

ElMano wrote:Looks like an Awsome machine to me
Many more positives about it than negatives so far. It's a great help to being creative too ... so it's getting my vote.
HalfBlindLefty wrote:It is a work around to avoid the issue.
On the plus side - if it does avoid the issue and it isn't causing me a problem in doing that work around ... then that's fine.
.........................................

I have this feeling that nearly every piece of electronic equipment I have had that's used memory cards has had some sort of problem / glitch with the card. Current video camera and stills camera have both had memory card issues.

And the Fender G-Dec3 30 has had no problems at all except the memory card, and it does seem quite picky about which cards it will work with.
An improv a day keeps the demons at bay!
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vancouverois
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by vancouverois »

About the Micro BR, it seems there is a compatibility list.
Not sure about the BR-80, may be it can apply too as the
card reader is certainly the same type.

http://songcrafters.org/64guitars/BR/MicroBR.html
Look for "SD memory card certification information" and also
"(SD memory card compatibility list)".
Jan 15th 2007
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VikingBlues
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Re: Recording but not on a PC

Post by VikingBlues »

Thanks for trying to help and digging out that site VC.

The difficulty is that due to the advances of technology the BR-80 has a maximum of 32Gb card vs the Micro BR 2Gb.

I notice that site you linked had a BR-80 page but nothing on memory cards as yet - same as the Roland site I'd looked at.

My impression from old forum posts around on the net is that these compatibility lists tend to grow from customers reports as to what works and doesn't work. So if you get the gear when it's still quite new you're one of the guinea pigs in the experiment. :wall:

Roland UK site has nothing on type of cards for the BR-80. The US site has an FAQ about cards :-
It says : There is no information of 2GB or more SD cards not working properly exclusive of the following "Incompatible SD/SDHC cards".
That list of incompatible cards has all of one card on it : TOSHIBA SD-K16GR6W4

I really don't think I have a card compatibilty problem as such - I think it's just the nature of the way this sort of hardware and sofrtware works (or sometimes fails to work). It's really amazing that it does work at all - a "Live" field recorder, an e-Band player, AND an 8 track recorder. All for £225 (285 euros) ... ridiculous really.
An improv a day keeps the demons at bay!
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