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ceviche
05-15-2010, 11:02 AM
Simple question: Will a lousy/cheap/bad mic make your uke and your voice sound bad or worse that it really is? I recently tried recording with a Logitech webcam--just for kicks. All I can say is, "Disheartening." What do you all have to say about this? Notice a world of difference when you got the good stuff?

--Dave E.

penster
05-15-2010, 12:00 PM
Dave
From the way you write your post, you already can guess the answer. A bad recording setup (and that includes a bad microphone) makes everything sound bad. A good setup does not make you sound good (unless you are good) - but that is another issue.
Penster

the52blues
05-15-2010, 12:11 PM
I'm not sure what model of Logitech web cam you used (mine was just under $100 and says it's 2.0 MPs) but so far all my videos are done with a Logitech web cam. I agree they will be better if I use a better mic and better camera. The only thing I don't like about the built-in mic with my cam is the auto-level volume. It's tricky to get the right balance right from the beginning. It's usually louder (sometimes with over modulation) for the first 2 or 3 seconds before it automatically pulls back but it can be done. Check out my vids you'll see what I mean about the auto-level volume. My youtube channel is DTFBMusic.

SweetWaterBlue
05-15-2010, 12:16 PM
Before my son lent me his Zoom H4 (he finally took it back :(), I used the microphone on my Logitech 9000 webcam. It sounded like crap (lots of pops etc), until I figured out that I had to turn the recording volume down to about 50% when I am using MovieMaker. Now its not bad, although I want to get either an H2 or a Samson GoMic. The GoMics can be had for about $35 and sound great.

ceviche
05-15-2010, 03:05 PM
Dave
From the way you write your post, you already can guess the answer. A bad recording setup (and that includes a bad microphone) makes everything sound bad. A good setup does not make you sound good (unless you are good) - but that is another issue.
Penster

I guess I was more wondering, "How bad and how good?" I somehow suspect that there are those who are so awesome that a lousy mic won't get in the way. At the sametime, there are those of us who need all the help that they can get--as well as those whom only an act of God can help. I think I'm in the second category.

To be honest, my current tech problem is rooting out the drivers that went with my Emu sound card. Once upon a time, my hard drive crashed after a move. So I'm still puzzling as to which box those disks are hiding in. Once that gets solved, I should be able to run patch cords from my powered mixing board direct into my computer. I'm hoping that will allow live audio that's synch'ed with my webcam. I thought I saw something in my Logitech webcam settings that showed audio input options.

Doug W
05-15-2010, 03:58 PM
What model Emu sound card do you have?

I think you will see a big difference using your mixer with a decent mic.

ceviche
05-16-2010, 05:05 PM
I think it's a 0404 internal sound card. I should have bought an external unit. Also, I'm currently running into driver issues. Had a crash earlier today and had to restore. Whadda pain!

--Dave

uke5417
05-17-2010, 04:29 AM
I've had a couple of Logitech cams, neither of which had a decent mic. With the first, I went out and found a five buck old Sony electret condenser mic at a thrift store; with the second, I'm using an H4N. Logitech is nice enough to let you choose with a pull-down the mic you use with its cams, so it's worked out rather well.

Doug W
05-17-2010, 07:10 AM
I think it's a 0404 internal sound card. I should have bought an external unit. Also, I'm currently running into driver issues. Had a crash earlier today and had to restore. Whadda pain!

--Dave

In case you don't find your drivers for the 0404, you can download them from Creative Labs. If you are feeling adventurous you can download alternate and better drivers from the kX project.

I use the kX project drivers for my Sound Blaster and Audigy cards for recording. There is a bit of a learning curve involved but they are pretty amazing.
http://www.kxproject.com/index.php

ceviche
05-22-2010, 01:16 PM
In case you don't find your drivers for the 0404, you can download them from Creative Labs. If you are feeling adventurous you can download alternate and better drivers from the kX project.

I use the kX project drivers for my Sound Blaster and Audigy cards for recording. There is a bit of a learning curve involved but they are pretty amazing.
http://www.kxproject.com/index.php

I managed to get the 0404 drivers installed, and things are looking up--so far--in this respect. I do get sound through them. Haven't plugged in mics yet.

So what's so exceptional about the KX project drivers? What's the diff? As you can tell, I haven't given KX a whirl yet.

--Dave E.

Doug W
05-23-2010, 11:21 AM
So what's so exceptional about the KX project drivers? What's the diff?

The kX drivers were developed by a group of people, (much smarter than me). They discovered that the main chip of the sound blaster cards (Emu10k1) and Audigy cards (Emu10k2) had a lot of capabilities that weren't being utilized so they set about doing it. The 0404 also uses the Emu10k2 main chip. However, I have never seen the software for the 0404 and other cards like the 1212 and 1820 in action so if the software works for you there is really no need to change to kX.

My contribution to the kX project, since I am not nerdy enough to do audio programing, was to try to;

1. Detail the process of hooking 2 kX compatible sound cards together (http://webpages.charter.net/drw46/kx2sc/a-intro.htm)
2. Detail the process of adding a second stereo input to an Audigy card (http://webpages.charter.net/drw46/kxaux/auxsc00.html)

Like I said earlier, I just set about documenting stuff that I had learned from others from the kX project, very little of the information from the humble little webpages listed above comes from my brain. I just put tried to stick info together from a lot of threads.

masoncade
08-03-2010, 05:54 PM
if you have the game rock band, the usb mic that comes with it works great. it's pretty clear and very durable. and you don't need an extra interface to use it! just plug and play

knadles
12-02-2010, 09:01 AM
Think of a microphone like this: it's the very first item in the audio chain, meaning that everything that comes after it is directly affected by the sound of the microphone, and as a transducer, it has the hardest job, because it converts one form of energy into another. There are a million ways for a transducer to do its work imperfectly and no transducers are perfect. When you pay more for a microphone, in general you're buying two things: better consistency from unit to unit (a Neumann TLM-103 manufactured in 2000 will likely sound very similar to a TLM-103 made today, but two Radio Shack specials that roll off the assembly line side-by-side may sound very different from each other), and a more desirable (not necessarily more perfect) translation of mechanical (acoustic) energy into electrical.

So yes, a bad microphone can make things sound very bad indeed. I still remember the day I A/B-ed a Beyer M300 against a Shure SM-58. My Shure sounded like a walkie talkie next to the Beyer. Beware though...once you know the difference, your life can get very expensive. My advice is stick to drugs. They're cheaper and stand less chance of wrecking your family. ;)

-Pete