Streaming and Recording Guide/Research

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  • rjh8705rjh8705 RJH TX on XBL Joined: Posts: 33
    Hey,

    I am considering buying a capture card but have seen some bad reviews online.  Any suggestions on which card to buy.....looking to spend around $160.

    thanks
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  • FunkyPFunkyP Chicks with Guns Joined: Posts: 1,485 ✭✭
    Jesseh said:
    So guys, I've got this laptop that I play SF4 on. And I'm just curious as I've been thinking getting into recording or streaming business that can this toaster of mine even record or stream very well. So I figured I'd ask you guys as you seem to be way more knowledgeable about this particular subject than I am. Here's my specs:
    Intel i3 @ 2.27GHz
    NVIDIA GeForce GT 230M
    Is it even possible to stream or record with this laptop? Or should I wait until I upgrade?
    Thats good enough to stream from, but not enough to play and stream at the same time
  • WarpticonWarpticon Main otaku of SRK #2 Joined: Posts: 9,530 ✭✭✭✭✭
    It would be easier for you to download OBS or FFSplit and try streaming than for anybody to speculate on your specific setup, really.
    If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the compound.
  • ranmasamaranmasama I dive kick irl Joined: Posts: 1,621
    Warpticon said:
    ranmasama said:
    Whats a decent audio mixer and headsets for a stream? Something that can use 3 headsets. Also whats the stream program most people are using at the moment?
    If you don't need something next week, I'd consider holding out for this: http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=115&cp_id=11503&cs_id=1150301&p_id=615808&seq=1&format=2

    As for software, everybody uses XSplit, OBS, or FFsplit on PC. Nothing else is worth using.
    Whats another good option? I rather get something to come in sooner than a month. Also what headsets would I need to get? I'm pretty sure usb headsets dont work on this.
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  • underwingunderwing Modder Joined: Posts: 498
    ranmasama said:
    Warpticon said:
    ranmasama said:
    Whats a decent audio mixer and headsets for a stream? Something that can use 3 headsets. Also whats the stream program most people are using at the moment?
    If you don't need something next week, I'd consider holding out for this: http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=115&cp_id=11503&cs_id=1150301&p_id=615808&seq=1&format=2

    As for software, everybody uses XSplit, OBS, or FFsplit on PC. Nothing else is worth using.
    Whats another good option? I rather get something to come in sooner than a month. Also what headsets would I need to get? I'm pretty sure usb headsets dont work on this.
    I like the Yamaha MG102C; it's about the same price as the Behringers, but WAY better quality in my experience.

    As for Headsets, those are trickier. If you want really good quality, you're going to pay out the nose for it. If you want a little more manageable, you can get alright quality that actually works with a mixer via the Yamaha CM500 apparently. It comes with a bias adapter that lets it work with mixers, which is NOT usually the case with non-broadcast headsets.

    If you can live with static, non-headset mics, you'll likely get better quality out of random decent quality dynamic microphones. Even something fairly cheap will get you something passable.
  • ranmasamaranmasama I dive kick irl Joined: Posts: 1,621
    Can the normal headsets that are used for PCs work? The ones with the green and pink wire?
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  • ShadoStrikeShadoStrike Guam's Stream Bro Joined: Posts: 182
    ranmasama said:
    Can the normal headsets that are used for PCs work? The ones with the green and pink wire?
    No, you can't plug any PC headset into a mixer because a PC requires 5v of power from the soundcard in order for the microphone to work. The Yamaha CM500 is your cheapest bet. If you want to utilize PC headsets, you might as well get the CM500 since it comes with a precious Bias adapter that WILL allow you to use PC headsets with your headset.
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  • TheKozTheKoz Joined: Posts: 80

    What's the best microphone solution for a Podcast or a Let's Play type of video.  At max there would be 3 to 4 people in a room and I want to capture their voice.  I am trying not to buy multiple mics to save on money. Do you guys have any good suggestions that don't involve mixers/amps?  I was thinking a usb one?  Any help would be much appreciated!

    If you can't beat them, show off.
  • FunkyPFunkyP Chicks with Guns Joined: Posts: 1,485 ✭✭
    Capturing a room will require a condensor mic, those are generally expensive and require a phantom power source and a mixer. If you don't want to spend money to get good quality sound you can buy a desktop/conference mic and jack the mic gain up. It'll sound terrible, but you won't have to spend much money.
  • TheKozTheKoz Joined: Posts: 80

     

    FunkyP said:
    Capturing a room will require a condensor mic, those are generally expensive and require a phantom power source and a mixer. If you don't want to spend money to get good quality sound you can buy a desktop/conference mic and jack the mic gain up. It'll sound terrible, but you won't have to spend much money.
    Thanks for the help!  Maybe I'll save up some money to get a higher quality condensor mic.
    If you can't beat them, show off.
  • LycannLycann Joined: Posts: 86
    Does anyone have any recommendations on mixers to use along with compatible headsets or mics, all preferably using USB if possible?

    My setup is as follows:

    A fairly new Windows 8 laptop, high specs
    An ElGato Capture HD card
    2 Logitech C920 web cams
    Xsplit


    The laptop itself only has 4 usb ports on it.  2 3.0 and 2 2.0 USB ports.

    So as you can see, I only have so many ports to work with.  I've thought about getting a splitter for more USB ports but I have had bad luck with those.

    I have no audio equipment experience so I am complete noob to the sound part of this.  Any suggestions would be awesome, nothing over the top expensive but nothing cheap as shit either.  (I have no idea about the price points of mixers and headsets)
  • FunkyPFunkyP Chicks with Guns Joined: Posts: 1,485 ✭✭
    If you're short on USB ports use an analog mixer, they're cheaper, easier to use, and more reliable. A couple posts above we've talked about which mixers and headsets to get. The Yamaha mixer and headsets are good for those on a budget.
  • LycannLycann Joined: Posts: 86
    FunkyP said:
    If you're short on USB ports use an analog mixer, they're cheaper, easier to use, and more reliable. A couple posts above we've talked about which mixers and headsets to get. The Yamaha mixer and headsets are good for those on a budget.
    I don't have it right in front of me, but I dont know if my laptop has an analog port.  Is this standard still for laptops?
  • SixfortyfiveSixfortyfive likes Saturn pads. Joined: Posts: 1,729 ✭✭✭
    Lycann said:
    FunkyP said:
    If you're short on USB ports use an analog mixer, they're cheaper, easier to use, and more reliable. A couple posts above we've talked about which mixers and headsets to get. The Yamaha mixer and headsets are good for those on a budget.
    I don't have it right in front of me, but I dont know if my laptop has an analog port.  Is this standard still for laptops?
    Do you have a microphone or line-in jack? If so, then you're good.
    "This is a perfectly balanced VS." - PTX-40A, Tatsunoko Vs Capcom
  • underwingunderwing Modder Joined: Posts: 498
    edited February 2013
    Lycann said:
    FunkyP said:
    If you're short on USB ports use an analog mixer, they're cheaper, easier to use, and more reliable. A couple posts above we've talked about which mixers and headsets to get. The Yamaha mixer and headsets are good for those on a budget.
    I don't have it right in front of me, but I dont know if my laptop has an analog port.  Is this standard still for laptops?
    Do you have a microphone or line-in jack? If so, then you're good.
    Those are two different things. Line-in is what you want; mic, not so much.

    A decent USB hub should work absolutely fine for a couple mics and/or web cams. My streaming set-up uses two HD Logitech C910's (running at 720p) and an ADC for the mixer output all on one 4-port USB 2 switch, no bandwidth trouble whatsoever.
    TheKoz said:

     

    FunkyP said:
    Capturing a room will require a condensor mic, those are generally expensive and require a phantom power source and a mixer. If you don't want to spend money to get good quality sound you can buy a desktop/conference mic and jack the mic gain up. It'll sound terrible, but you won't have to spend much money.
    Thanks for the help!  Maybe I'll save up some money to get a higher quality condensor mic.
    I'd go the boundary mic solution for room mic'ing, instead of a Plain-Jane condenser. Boundary mics level things out so that there's less localization to the sound -- if you use a condenser, someone getting closer to/farther from the mic will end up sounding significantly different, while a boundary mic will sound almost perfectly consistent for someone no matter where they are in the room. Condensers will also pick up more room noise, as you'll have to amp them to make up for the distance of the sound sources. Condensers are usually meant to be addressed from about a foot away, give-or-take -- they're studio mics. As for boundary mics, I'm loving my PRO-44 personally, and might be grabbing a second to cover one of my upcoming events more evenly (large open room). Note that most boundary mics also require +48V phantom power (powered XLR from a mixer or pro audio interface), just like condensers, and use balanced signals too such that long runs don't pick up noise on the line. The PRO-44 has a pretty decent length cable that comes with it, and I don't even have to worry about running it next to AC lines or anything.
    Post edited by underwing on
  • underwingunderwing Modder Joined: Posts: 498
    edited February 2013
    Bah, double post, wth new forum software. :| There no delete button?
    Post edited by underwing on
  • SixfortyfiveSixfortyfive likes Saturn pads. Joined: Posts: 1,729 ✭✭✭
    My CM500 headset arrived in the mail, but there's no documentation and I'm a little unsure as to how I'm supposed to hook it up to my mixer. Any help? I'll lay out what I've got.

    one MG102c:
    image
    (I also have a 4-way headphone splitter/amplifier hooked into the Phones jack so that I can hook up multiple headsets/headphones.)


    The BPHS1s are straightforward: XLR mic jack + 1/4" headphone jack. The CM500 has some extra gear, pictured below:

    image
    1/8" TRS headphone plug (black)
    1/8" TRS microphone plug (gray)
    the so-called bias adapter on the left: 1/8" input jack, 1/8" TRS plug, requires 2 AAA batteries
    1/8" to 1/4" TRS adaptor
    1/8" to 1/4" TS adaptor

    I'm assuming I should hook it up like so:
    headphone plug > 1/4" TRS adaptor (stereo?) > phones jack on the mixer/amplifier
    microphone plug > bias adaptor > 1/4" TS adaptor (mono?) > channel 1 or 2 mic input (balanced) on mixer

    And then I'd put the two BPHS1s on channels 3 and 5. Does that sound right? Would there be any reason to or not to hook up the CM500 mic to the mono input on channels 3 or 5 (unbalanced) instead?
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  • ShadoStrikeShadoStrike Guam's Stream Bro Joined: Posts: 182
    edited February 2013
    Snip
    You pretty much nailed it. That's how I hook up my Superlux HD660x and CM500's together on my Yamaha MG10/2.

    It's crucial to have the bias adapter to use the TS mono adapter, it won't work otherwise. You can switch the channels around, but I usually keep the CM500s on the mono 1 and 2 channels.
    Post edited by ShadoStrike on
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  • PrinceMurphyPrinceMurphy Joined: Posts: 225
    Alright, I bought one. Selling the old one and the Monoprice HDMI to DVI converter plus cables could make this end in a simpler setup and more money.

    This just in: The one I "reviewed" a few pages back does the exact same thing. The only issue I seem to be having is that the audio kinda sucks straight out of HDMI, I wonder if I can get the old company to take it back so I can buy this new one or if this is somehow my fault.

    The audio issue is that it cuts out every 2 seconds, very consistently though.

    Yet another edit: This box is just screwing with me, now it works flawlessly via HDMI. It always worked beautifully with the audio out. I wonder if it was something with me plugging it in and out.

    REGARDLESS: It all works fantastically now, no point in this big ol' Monoprice DVI thing anymore.

    Did you ever figure out what caused the HDMI audio issue?  Im having the same issue with it,but i cant make it go away.

  • Smashbro29Smashbro29 Smashing Fighter Joined: Posts: 3,511 ✭✭✭
    Alright, I bought one. Selling the old one and the Monoprice HDMI to DVI converter plus cables could make this end in a simpler setup and more money.

    This just in: The one I "reviewed" a few pages back does the exact same thing. The only issue I seem to be having is that the audio kinda sucks straight out of HDMI, I wonder if I can get the old company to take it back so I can buy this new one or if this is somehow my fault.

    The audio issue is that it cuts out every 2 seconds, very consistently though.

    Yet another edit: This box is just screwing with me, now it works flawlessly via HDMI. It always worked beautifully with the audio out. I wonder if it was something with me plugging it in and out.

    REGARDLESS: It all works fantastically now, no point in this big ol' Monoprice DVI thing anymore.

    Did you ever figure out what caused the HDMI audio issue?  Im having the same issue with it,but i cant make it go away.
    I think it's the capture card, when I switch inputs it messes up but if I make one crap recording the next one will be fine, so I just hit record then stop then the preview audio sounds fine.

  • PrinceMurphyPrinceMurphy Joined: Posts: 225
    I'm getting the audio drops on the monitor that the guys are playing on. I use the 3.5mm audio when recording. I think it's just the device itself. Still pretty damn food for just 20 bucks.
  • underwingunderwing Modder Joined: Posts: 498
    Hey, anybody had any times where, in XSplit, going live doesn't start with audio? I've had a couple streams where I'll test the set-up on one Twitch account, everything's golden, I kill the broadcast and line everything up for the main broadcast, hit the switch and start broadcasting to the main account (same settings, different account), and the stream gets no audio. Killing the feed and restarting it immediately fixes the problem, but the mic bar in XSplit looks like it's receiving audio just fine even when the stream isn't hearing anything. Anybody know what's up? It's really frustrating, and I'm thinking I might need to put some background music into our title card just to detect the issue before it causes problems again.
  • Smashbro29Smashbro29 Smashing Fighter Joined: Posts: 3,511 ✭✭✭
    underwing said:
    Hey, anybody had any times where, in XSplit, going live doesn't start with audio? I've had a couple streams where I'll test the set-up on one Twitch account, everything's golden, I kill the broadcast and line everything up for the main broadcast, hit the switch and start broadcasting to the main account (same settings, different account), and the stream gets no audio. Killing the feed and restarting it immediately fixes the problem, but the mic bar in XSplit looks like it's receiving audio just fine even when the stream isn't hearing anything. Anybody know what's up? It's really frustrating, and I'm thinking I might need to put some background music into our title card just to detect the issue before it causes problems again.
    It's happened, the move is to see if the bar is moving or just staying in one place.
  • underwingunderwing Modder Joined: Posts: 498
    underwing said:
    Hey, anybody had any times where, in XSplit, going live doesn't start with audio? I've had a couple streams where I'll test the set-up on one Twitch account, everything's golden, I kill the broadcast and line everything up for the main broadcast, hit the switch and start broadcasting to the main account (same settings, different account), and the stream gets no audio. Killing the feed and restarting it immediately fixes the problem, but the mic bar in XSplit looks like it's receiving audio just fine even when the stream isn't hearing anything. Anybody know what's up? It's really frustrating, and I'm thinking I might need to put some background music into our title card just to detect the issue before it causes problems again.
    It's happened, the move is to see if the bar is moving or just staying in one place.
    That's what I'm saying -- XSplit's bar is moving with audio on the mic as expected, but the stream was hearing nothing. Toggling the stream off and on again (with no other changes to settings) immediately fixed it. Gonna send a bug report into SplitMedia Labs about it if it keeps happening.
  • Smashbro29Smashbro29 Smashing Fighter Joined: Posts: 3,511 ✭✭✭
    underwing said:
    underwing said:
    Hey, anybody had any times where, in XSplit, going live doesn't start with audio? I've had a couple streams where I'll test the set-up on one Twitch account, everything's golden, I kill the broadcast and line everything up for the main broadcast, hit the switch and start broadcasting to the main account (same settings, different account), and the stream gets no audio. Killing the feed and restarting it immediately fixes the problem, but the mic bar in XSplit looks like it's receiving audio just fine even when the stream isn't hearing anything. Anybody know what's up? It's really frustrating, and I'm thinking I might need to put some background music into our title card just to detect the issue before it causes problems again.
    It's happened, the move is to see if the bar is moving or just staying in one place.
    That's what I'm saying -- XSplit's bar is moving with audio on the mic as expected, but the stream was hearing nothing. Toggling the stream off and on again (with no other changes to settings) immediately fixed it. Gonna send a bug report into SplitMedia Labs about it if it keeps happening.
    Wow, that is weird.

    Something that pisses me off:
    Xsplit and the Avermedia Live Gamer HD don't play nice if you use the audio in, desyncs. The solution is to put the game sound in as a "microphone" but if you want to record higher quality footage with RECentral you can't do that because for some inexplicable reason that causes there to be an ever so slight delay in the audio so you gotta swap a cable, that on top of the fact that Avermedia seriously needs a firmware update to fix the syncing issues in video editors. I also wouldn't mind a raw capture option but now I'm just making a wishlist.
  • CallistoCallisto Chicago's Freest Joined: Posts: 1,466
    Snip
    You pretty much nailed it. That's how I hook up my Superlux HD660x and CM500's together on my Yamaha MG10/2.

    It's crucial to have the bias adapter to use the TS mono adapter, it won't work otherwise. You can switch the channels around, but I usually keep the CM500s on the mono 1 and 2 channels.

    Sorry to noob it up, but what exactly is a bias adapter, is that the 3.5mm to 1/4"?  I was wanting to get the CM500s, but I didn't know what else I needed to get them into the MG102c.  Do I need a separate 3.5mm > 1/4" or do they come with everything I need?
  • ShadoStrikeShadoStrike Guam's Stream Bro Joined: Posts: 182
    Callisto said:

    Sorry to noob it up, but what exactly is a bias adapter, is that the 3.5mm to 1/4"?  I was wanting to get the CM500s, but I didn't know what else I needed to get them into the MG102c.  Do I need a separate 3.5mm > 1/4" or do they come with everything I need?
    The Bias Adapter provides external power to an electret microphone for use in a mixer. Without it, your typical electret PC mic, or in this case, the CM500, will not work. In the picture sixfortyfive posted, it's the black box with the 3.5mm coming out of it.
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  • PrinceMurphyPrinceMurphy Joined: Posts: 225
    So there's a separate power supply for the bias adapter as well?
  • FunkyPFunkyP Chicks with Guns Joined: Posts: 1,485 ✭✭
  • Smashbro29Smashbro29 Smashing Fighter Joined: Posts: 3,511 ✭✭✭
    Can I use a condensor mic with my current mixer? Is it an XLR thing? What kinda prices are we talking?
  • WarpticonWarpticon Main otaku of SRK #2 Joined: Posts: 9,530 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Condensor mics require phantom power, except for the ones that have a battery compartment. If your mixer supports phantom power, you're good, and if it supports XLR and isn't paleolithic, chances are it does.
    If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the compound.
  • Smashbro29Smashbro29 Smashing Fighter Joined: Posts: 3,511 ✭✭✭
    Warpticon said:
    Condensor mics require phantom power, except for the ones that have a battery compartment. If your mixer supports phantom power, you're good, and if it supports XLR and isn't paleolithic, chances are it does.
    All of your words must mean something but I have no idea what.
  • underwingunderwing Modder Joined: Posts: 498
    Warpticon said:
    Condensor mics require phantom power, except for the ones that have a battery compartment. If your mixer supports phantom power, you're good, and if it supports XLR and isn't paleolithic, chances are it does.
    All of your words must mean something but I have no idea what.
    You have, what, a Behringer mixer? You should be fine. Pretty much any modern mixing console with XLR connectors will have a "+48V (Phantom)" switch somewhere -- that puts a voltage over the balanced XLR connectors that is used to power microphones that need it, while (theoretically) not affecting microphones that don't. Condensors (and other mics requiring phantom power) will work when that switch is enabled (usually has a light); you'll often hear a pop on the line when you do that (it's good practice, in fact, to pot such lines down when you plug them in, and most people will say only plug things in when Phantom is disabled). Phantom's pretty much standard these days; older mics and other equipment might not have the ability to use phantom power, but anything you grab should.

    This is not to be confused with the power that a "mic" port supplies over the third conductor to a computer headset -- same basic idea (power the microphone over the cable), completely different implementation (I want to say computers push out +5V or +12V or something for that bias, and it's a flat DC voltage with it's own dedicated wire, rather than utilizing the two non-ground signal wires of a balanced XLR cable). The different configurations is why PC headsets are highly susceptible to noise, and you don't want to run a long cable to a PC headset/mic, while XLR cables can run tens of meters with no problem.

    The bias adapter used by/included with the CM500's are used to provide the voltage that the PC sound card would normally, because 1/4" connectors on mixers don't output a voltage for mic bias (they're built for straight-up balanced or unbalanced mic- or line- level signals). Thus the need for batteries. The reason you don't generally use a wall wart for such bias adapters is twofold: 1) bias is really a pretty miniscule draw, and 2) adding more AC->DC power sources will only ever give you more trouble, audio-wise -- you'll end up with a ground loop or other noise-inducing troubles.
  • ShadoStrikeShadoStrike Guam's Stream Bro Joined: Posts: 182
    underwing said:
    You have, what, a Behringer mixer? You should be fine. Pretty much any modern mixing console with XLR connectors will have a "+48V (Phantom)" switch somewhere -- that puts a voltage over the balanced XLR connectors that is used to power microphones that need it, while (theoretically) not affecting microphones that don't. Condensors (and other mics requiring phantom power) will work when that switch is enabled (usually has a light); you'll often hear a pop on the line when you do that (it's good practice, in fact, to pot such lines down when you plug them in, and most people will say only plug things in when Phantom is disabled). Phantom's pretty much standard these days; older mics and other equipment might not have the ability to use phantom power, but anything you grab should.

    This is not to be confused with the power that a "mic" port supplies over the third conductor to a computer headset -- same basic idea (power the microphone over the cable), completely different implementation (I want to say computers push out +5V or +12V or something for that bias, and it's a flat DC voltage with it's own dedicated wire, rather than utilizing the two non-ground signal wires of a balanced XLR cable). The different configurations is why PC headsets are highly susceptible to noise, and you don't want to run a long cable to a PC headset/mic, while XLR cables can run tens of meters with no problem.

    The bias adapter used by/included with the CM500's are used to provide the voltage that the PC sound card would normally, because 1/4" connectors on mixers don't output a voltage for mic bias (they're built for straight-up balanced or unbalanced mic- or line- level signals). Thus the need for batteries. The reason you don't generally use a wall wart for such bias adapters is twofold: 1) bias is really a pretty miniscule draw, and 2) adding more AC->DC power sources will only ever give you more trouble, audio-wise -- you'll end up with a ground loop or other noise-inducing troubles.
    One of the best explanations for electret and condenser microphones, as well as phantom power. 
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  • underwingunderwing Modder Joined: Posts: 498
    underwing said:
    <snip>
    One of the best explanations for electret and condenser microphones, as well as phantom power. 
    Thanks, glad someone found it clear. Still learning a lot about audio engineering stuff myself... it's a pretty deep rabbit hole.
  • Smashbro29Smashbro29 Smashing Fighter Joined: Posts: 3,511 ✭✭✭
    Hmm... If I use a condensor mic in the mixer how much am I looking to spend? And how do people make regular recordings with condenser mics?
  • underwingunderwing Modder Joined: Posts: 498
    Hmm... If I use a condensor mic in the mixer how much am I looking to spend? And how do people make regular recordings with condenser mics?
    What in particular are you looking to record with a condenser? Studio-style voice in a quiet room, or something else? Because most "something else"s can be troublesome on a condenser -- they're generally pretty sensitive mics, and need to be "addressed" very deliberately (think the speaker's mouth being 6-12" away from it), unless you want a lot of room noise.

    When you buy, you'll want to look at the pickup pattern (describes how sensitive the mic is to sound coming in from various angles) and consider how you want to use the microphone. For general studio recording, the AT2020 is a not-half-bad place to start -- it's one of the cheapest out there, but it's got good sound when addressed correctly (I use one for voice-over and podcasting duties). A pop filter (even homemade or the cheap ones in related products) is pretty vital, though.
  • CallistoCallisto Chicago's Freest Joined: Posts: 1,466

    Thanks for the info guys, definitely will be picking up some CM500s soon.

  • FunkyPFunkyP Chicks with Guns Joined: Posts: 1,485 ✭✭
    For those with CM500's I highly recommend replacing the mic elements in them as they are absolute garbage. It requires a little soldering and obviously will void the warranty, but they will sound much better.

    I just replaced with them these cheap elements from Radioshack and they sound substantially better.
    http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2062215
  • Smashbro29Smashbro29 Smashing Fighter Joined: Posts: 3,511 ✭✭✭
    underwing said:
    Hmm... If I use a condensor mic in the mixer how much am I looking to spend? And how do people make regular recordings with condenser mics?
    What in particular are you looking to record with a condenser? Studio-style voice in a quiet room, or something else? Because most "something else"s can be troublesome on a condenser -- they're generally pretty sensitive mics, and need to be "addressed" very deliberately (think the speaker's mouth being 6-12" away from it), unless you want a lot of room noise.

    When you buy, you'll want to look at the pickup pattern (describes how sensitive the mic is to sound coming in from various angles) and consider how you want to use the microphone. For general studio recording, the AT2020 is a not-half-bad place to start -- it's one of the cheapest out there, but it's got good sound when addressed correctly (I use one for voice-over and podcasting duties). A pop filter (even homemade or the cheap ones in related products) is pretty vital, though.
    Definitely gonna look into these, basically need something that won't pick up whatever game is playing but is also good for voice over when it's quiet although if my mixer goes into my capture card wouldn't that mean all my voice clips would be video files?
  • PrinceMurphyPrinceMurphy Joined: Posts: 225
    I noticed XLR was mentioned each time phantom power was brought up. Will I not be able to use a 1/8 to 1/4 adapter to plug into the mic input on my mixer? Would I need to find a 1/8 to XLR Adapter?
  • underwingunderwing Modder Joined: Posts: 498
    I noticed XLR was mentioned each time phantom power was brought up. Will I not be able to use a 1/8 to 1/4 adapter to plug into the mic input on my mixer? Would I need to find a 1/8 to XLR Adapter?
    For which microphone? If you're talking about the CM500, no, you don't -- the bias adapter takes care of your power needs, and gives you what looks to be a balanced output (maybe it's actually unbalanced and split across stereo, can someone confirm? I don't have the CM500). 1/4" adapter should work fine (unless it's doing the unbalanced split thing... that *can* cause problems with some mixers when they think it's a balanced signal... but nobody's complained about that, so it sounds like you're good).

    Basically, if a mic doesn't use an XLR connector already, it should basically never *need* to. Phantom power is exclusively for balanced XLR jacks, for all intents and purposes.
  • Smashbro29Smashbro29 Smashing Fighter Joined: Posts: 3,511 ✭✭✭
    Underwing help me find the condensor mic of my dreams!
  • PrinceMurphyPrinceMurphy Joined: Posts: 225
    I was talking about the cm500. I'm all clear now
  • underwingunderwing Modder Joined: Posts: 498
    Underwing help me find the condensor mic of my dreams!
    If you're in a relatively quiet room, and the gameplay audio (TV) is directly "behind" (to the back of) a cardioid-patterned mic like the AT2020 I linked, you should be good (provided that you address it correctly). If you're looking for perfect isolation, so you have *only* voice on the mic... well, put on some headphones and mute the TV. You'll just hear the sound of silence (room noise) and the voice on the mic. Otherwise, sound *will* bounce into the mic. I'm assuming acoustic baffling isn't in your budget. :P

    For live stuff, if I'm using a condenser (I try to avoid using it when not doing solo recordings), I get right up on the mic (with pop filter, of course) and the proximity effect lets me pot it such that not much else comes through. That said, like I mentioned before, noisy environments you've got other options to consider.

    As for the "voiceovers as video files", just depends on your set-up. If you're *only* recording voice, pipe the line out of your mixer into something other than your capture card so you can use audacity or another sound recording program to record. Or see if audacity detects your card as an audio device (it might); then you can just use it direct.
  • Smashbro29Smashbro29 Smashing Fighter Joined: Posts: 3,511 ✭✭✭

    underwing said:
    Underwing help me find the condensor mic of my dreams!
    If you're in a relatively quiet room, and the gameplay audio (TV) is directly "behind" (to the back of) a cardioid-patterned mic like the AT2020 I linked, you should be good (provided that you address it correctly). If you're looking for perfect isolation, so you have *only* voice on the mic... well, put on some headphones and mute the TV. You'll just hear the sound of silence (room noise) and the voice on the mic. Otherwise, sound *will* bounce into the mic. I'm assuming acoustic baffling isn't in your budget. :P

    For live stuff, if I'm using a condenser (I try to avoid using it when not doing solo recordings), I get right up on the mic (with pop filter, of course) and the proximity effect lets me pot it such that not much else comes through. That said, like I mentioned before, noisy environments you've got other options to consider.

    As for the "voiceovers as video files", just depends on your set-up. If you're *only* recording voice, pipe the line out of your mixer into something other than your capture card so you can use audacity or another sound recording program to record. Or see if audacity detects your card as an audio device (it might); then you can just use it direct.
    The gameplay commentary part of it doesn't need to be PERFECT I'm sure it'll be better than the cheap XLR mic I have now, bonus points if I can put it in the middle of 2 people and have it work until I can afford a second. Overall though it'll basically do what I do now with cheap mics but better, right?
  • underwingunderwing Modder Joined: Posts: 498
    The gameplay commentary part of it doesn't need to be PERFECT I'm sure it'll be better than the cheap XLR mic I have now, bonus points if I can put it in the middle of 2 people and have it work until I can afford a second. Overall though it'll basically do what I do now with cheap mics but better, right?
    Dunno what mics you're rocking right now. Could be better, but trying to mic 2 people starts to get tricky. Under the right conditions, you can mic a whole couch and make it sound OK (not great, but decent)... but it's all about environment and application. The further your commentators are from the mic, the more you have to crank it up (thus getting more ambient noise), and you'll also have to worry about them shifting closer and further from the mic. If the room is pretty silent, it's manageable; if not (say, it's a tournament) you'd be better off with a couple dynamic mics, or CM500's. Unfortunately, the only way to know is by experimenting. That's why I have $600 worth of mics -- had to try different stuff until I found the ones that I liked for each situation. Your standards/needs will differ from mine, and I'm nowhere NEAR an expert; sorry I can't give more definitive advice, man.
  • Smashbro29Smashbro29 Smashing Fighter Joined: Posts: 3,511 ✭✭✭
    underwing said:
    The gameplay commentary part of it doesn't need to be PERFECT I'm sure it'll be better than the cheap XLR mic I have now, bonus points if I can put it in the middle of 2 people and have it work until I can afford a second. Overall though it'll basically do what I do now with cheap mics but better, right?
    Dunno what mics you're rocking right now. Could be better, but trying to mic 2 people starts to get tricky. Under the right conditions, you can mic a whole couch and make it sound OK (not great, but decent)... but it's all about environment and application. The further your commentators are from the mic, the more you have to crank it up (thus getting more ambient noise), and you'll also have to worry about them shifting closer and further from the mic. If the room is pretty silent, it's manageable; if not (say, it's a tournament) you'd be better off with a couple dynamic mics, or CM500's. Unfortunately, the only way to know is by experimenting. That's why I have $600 worth of mics -- had to try different stuff until I found the ones that I liked for each situation. Your standards/needs will differ from mine, and I'm nowhere NEAR an expert; sorry I can't give more definitive advice, man.

    600 HUH? Well figure it's one guy 90% of the time. What's good?

  • WarpticonWarpticon Main otaku of SRK #2 Joined: Posts: 9,530 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 2013
    If you really wanted to use a condensor mic and minimize background noise, you could always get one of these: http://www.iso-shieldacoustics.com/ You could also build one if you're DIY enough, as it's mostly just pvc pipe and acoustic foam, which is why they sell them so cheap compared to the ones made via standard manufacturing.
    Post edited by Warpticon on
    If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the compound.
  • HANHAN OG Chicago Fighter Joined: Posts: 114
    Somewhat off topic but related question for you streamers...what do you use to lug all your gear around when you go mobile? When I'm streaming at a new venue or somewhere other than the arcade I work t, its always a struggle to get all the gear there unpacked and setup. Last time I used a large garbage bag to haul everything, lol...
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