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50,513 posts
  • 2020-08-26

    Hi,

    I'm new to this forum so apologies if this has been dealt with before.  I record guitar, keyboards and vocals at home using a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 USB interface to pc DAW.  Until recently I have done all vocals using a mic through a Yamaha keyboard as a pre-amp, straight to the interface.  I wanted to get the keyboard out of that chain but found that a mic directly into the interface was short on gain and dynamics.  Saw on another site the benefits of a DI box, so purchased an Ultra D1 and also a condenser mic.  
    When I connected the condenser mic to Di box to interface, I had no signal to the DAW, regardless of whether I had the interface phantom power switched on or not.  No combination of attenuation switches, monitor switches or any other settings on the interface, Di Box or DAW could produce a signal.  However, if I take the Di Box out of the chain so the mic is directly into the interface, it all works but is lacking in the dynamics I was hoping the Di Box would boost.
    My guess is this is all about phantom power somehow because a dynamic mic will work via the Di Box and interface albeit just passes through.  
    Anyone able to advise, should a Di Box work with a condenser mic under those circumstances or am I wasting my time?  
    Have stuck a couple of pics up to assist.
    Cheers,
    Bob

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    • Robert Bentley
      Robert Bentley Trying to upload a pic showing the front view
      • Aug 26
    • Robert Bentley
      Kyle Johnson Hi there Guitar Bob, Kyle here with Music Tribe. A DI box is a perfect solution for recording the output of an Electric Keyboard into a Mic Input, because the DI Box takes the signal from Line Level to Mic Level. The reason plugging a condenser mic into a DI Box does not work is that the DI box is not meant to have a Microphone connected to it at all. DI Boxes are built to accept Line Level signal , and output Mic Level signal.
      • Aug 26
      • Using Ultra D1 with Focusrite Interface - No signal from condenser mic
        Robert Bentley Hi Kyle, thanks for the swift response. That couldn't be clearer, now feeling as though I should have done a bit more research!! Still, it does seem to help when recording my electric acoustic by cable. Thanks again. Bob
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        • Aug 26
      • Using Ultra D1 with Focusrite Interface - No signal from condenser mic
        Kyle Johnson A DI Box is a great tool to have around your studio, I have a Behringer DI400P and a Klark Teknik DI 10A myself. They are both great for tracking electric Guitar/Bass.
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        • Aug 26
      • Using Ultra D1 with Focusrite Interface - No signal from condenser mic
        Dave Morrison An instrument (Guitar, Bass, etc) can be directly connected to a DI box. These instruments have an output that is much hotter than a microphone.
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        • Aug 26
    • Robert Bentley
      Rex Beckett A DI box is not right for connecting any type of microphone. It will certainly not work with a condenser mic as it will not provide phantom power. Connect the condenser mic directly to the Scarlett. If this lacks the punch you want, you could insert a preamp to boost the mic level.
      • Aug 26
    • Robert Bentley
      Robert Bentley Thank you folks. Very useful info, am now on the lookout for a low cost preamp and have a few in my sights. A great help!
      • Aug 27
    • Robert Bentley
      Pat Murphy You should be able to connect Condenser Mike straight to SCARLET input using XLR. Make sure switch is set to MIC not INST. Also if it is a condenser MIC and requires phantom power make sure your +48 volts is pressed to provide phantom power. Make sure your input gain is down when you do this and slowly bring it up. It should work for you. If it does not, can you try another cable, and then another mike?
      • Aug 27
      • Using Ultra D1 with Focusrite Interface - No signal from condenser mic
        Robert Bentley Thanks for your help Pat. Yes, it does connect ok using all the above so no probs in normal use. I had previously purchased the Di Box primarily for my guitar but thought, as it has phantom power, it would be useful as a pre-amp for the mic - but now I know better. It just has little headroom and seems slightly duller than the Peavey dynamic mic I have been using so I will keep my eyes open for a cheap pre-amp to see if it gives it a bit of a kick.
        Thanks again.
        • Aug 27
      • Using Ultra D1 with Focusrite Interface - No signal from condenser mic
        Dave Morrison I think I see the confusion. That DI box can be Phantom Powered. That means the active circuitry inside the box can be powered from a battery or a mixer sending phantom power to the DI box. I can't be used to send phantom power to any mic or guitar. A lot of product descriptions just aren't clear for people new to audio. I see that a lot when someone buys a condenser mic and tries to hook it directly to their computer. It's just not clear enough in the product description.
        • Aug 27
  • 2020-07-08
    Hi, is it possible to get a set of replacement control knobs for the BDI21?
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  • 2020-03-03

    Morning all,

    This section of the site seems a little... empty ... compared to other places so I'm not expecting anyone to spot this any time soon. My question though is this...

    The DI800 says it can be phantom powered or mains powered, but the manual is a little thin on how this works in practice. Does giving it phantom power just power individual channels, or does phantom on one line give power to all eight?

    And having done that, what happens if you have the mains plugged in and accidentally add phantom on one or more channels as well? Does it ignore it? Or do you then call the fire brigade?

    I'd try it myself but it's going to take a little while to have the space to set it up, and that may end up being at the next gig rather than on the test bench.

    Anyway, cheers as always.

    G

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    0 111
    • Graham Guy
      Rex Beckett

      @tangosynthesis 


      You were wrong, Graham, your post did get spotted.


       


      You were right about the DI800 user manual, though. It does a masterly job of failing to explain how the phantom powering works. Based on experience with other active DI boxes, I can guess a few things:


       


      Each channel is separate (apart from the shared mains power supply). If you want to use phantom powering, each channel would need phantom power from the mixer/console.


       


      I think it is very unlikely that there would be a problem if you accidentally supplied phantom power to one or more channels while the mains power was turned on. Phantom power is limited to low currents so doesn't readily produce smoke. I suspect it would effectively be ignored.

      • Mar 2
  • 2019-10-22
    0 141