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  #181  
Old 12-13-2019, 09:16 PM
Captain Jim Captain Jim is offline
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Just messing around, this song turned into reggae swing (who knew that was a thing?). Spire Studio recording. I recorded bass, drums, guitar, and vocals, and my music partner added the vibraphone vibe.

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  #182  
Old 12-14-2019, 07:54 PM
lfoo6952 lfoo6952 is online now
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Captain Jim:

I've been following this thread for the past few months. The quality of your recordings are excellent. I was wondering how you were capturing the sound of your instruments, in particular the bass and drums, because it doesn't sound like you were using the built-in mic.

Please do tell.

Thanks.

regards
Luke
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  #183  
Old 12-14-2019, 10:37 PM
Captain Jim Captain Jim is offline
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Originally Posted by lfoo6952 View Post
Captain Jim:

I've been following this thread for the past few months. The quality of your recordings are excellent. I was wondering how you were capturing the sound of your instruments, in particular the bass and drums, because it doesn't sound like you were using the built-in mic.

Please do tell.

Thanks.

regards
Luke
Hi Luke,

Thanks for the kind words. I am running the bass and drums (electronic) with a direct line in the back of the Spire. The Grace Design preamps are good, as is the "bass amp" feature on the Spire. I usually use the built in condenser mic for acoustic guitar and hand percussion (like shakers), and occasionally vocals. I also run a direct line in with acoustic and electric guitars.

The Spire Studio is easy to use, and handy for sending the tracks back and forth with my music partner. He has used the onboard mic for recording piano as well as the preamp with a synth run direct or with a direct line in after an amp.

Hope that helps,
Jim
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  #184  
Old 12-15-2019, 07:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Captain Jim View Post
Hi Luke,

Thanks for the kind words. I am running the bass and drums (electronic) with a direct line in the back of the Spire. The Grace Design preamps are good, as is the "bass amp" feature on the Spire. I usually use the built in condenser mic for acoustic guitar and hand percussion (like shakers), and occasionally vocals. I also run a direct line in with acoustic and electric guitars.

The Spire Studio is easy to use, and handy for sending the tracks back and forth with my music partner. He has used the onboard mic for recording piano as well as the preamp with a synth run direct or with a direct line in after an amp.

Hope that helps,
Jim
Just to clarify if I understand correctly, the drums are a physical electronic drum kit ?
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  #185  
Old 12-15-2019, 08:15 AM
Captain Jim Captain Jim is offline
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Just to clarify if I understand correctly, the drums are a physical electronic drum kit ?
Yes, the drums are a Yamaha DD65. The foot pedals are more like a footswitch - I made a wood enclosure for them, with a spring so they have a spring-back, more like actual drum pedals. I did play drums for a few years back in the early 80s. I don't have room for a full set of drums in my small music room, and my housemates (supportive wife and a cat who really likes music) would not likely appreciate the noisy practice. These are not fancy, but certainly adequate for the recording I am doing.



Before trying one, I thought these were toy-like. Using one changed my mind. For further clarification, you don't get the same physical response (tactile feel of the drumstick against a cymbal), but more like a set of drum practice pads. I can be drumming away, headphones on, and no one in the house is none-the-wiser. The built-in speaker on the DD65 is mediocre, but plugged directly into the Spire Studio gives a more authentic drum sound.

Hope that helps.
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  #186  
Old 12-15-2019, 03:31 PM
lfoo6952 lfoo6952 is online now
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Thanks for the explanation. I think I'm going to get the Spire. I like the ease and simplicity of this baby because when it comes to technology, I'm an idiot.
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  #187  
Old 12-15-2019, 03:59 PM
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Thanks for the explanation. I think I'm going to get the Spire. I like the ease and simplicity of this baby because when it comes to technology, I'm an idiot.
I get that. I like to think I'm reasonably tech-savy, but using a Zoom H4n Pro to record was slow and frustrating. Then moving files to a DAW. With the Spire Studio, you pick an effect/amp/pedal, then do a 10 second sound check... you're ready to record. You'll learn a lot with mic placement and the simplistic mixing, but you get to put most of your time into playing/recording, and not messing with equipment. Room acoustics and ambient noise matter. It isn't a tough learning curve, though.

The flip side of the ease: not many changes you can make after the fact; you can't "add some reverb to this part" or "bring up the volume on that part." But, did I mention: easy.
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  #188  
Old 12-15-2019, 04:28 PM
reeve21 reeve21 is offline
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Cap'n Jim--

Can you compare the internal mics in the Spire to the mics in H4n?

Thanks,
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  #189  
Old 12-15-2019, 04:57 PM
Captain Jim Captain Jim is offline
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Cap'n Jim--

Can you compare the internal mics in the Spire to the mics in H4n?

Thanks,
The Spire has one condenser mic, the H4n Pro has X/Y stereo mics. Both do a decent job, but the Spire is much easier in actual use. Less about the mic and more about setting a tempo and getting to the actual recording. Pulling the tracks off the Spire and making a wav file couldn't be easier; same with sending Spire files to another Spire Studio user.

For me, the downside of the H4n Pro is all the button pushes and wheel turns you have to make to get to the set up for recording.

Another plus for the Spire Studio: 8 tracks instead of the 4 (3 if you use the X/Y mics for stereo) you get with the H4n Pro. Yes, you can export those tracks to a DAW so you can use more tracks. I found I frequently wanted 5 tracks or more (guitar, bass, drums, and two vocal tracks) - easy with the Spire, not so much with the H4n Pro.

That is my experience after a year of using the H4n Pro, prior to getting the Spire Studio. Other users with more experience on the H4n Pro may find it easy - I didn't. I am not trying to talk anyone out of the Zoom, just relating my usage. Since getting the Spire, I haven't used the H4n Pro. I should probably sell it - it would be great for someone who can use the hand-held aspect (I did buy the handle for it that goes in the tripod socket on the back, to make positioning handier).
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  #190  
Old 12-15-2019, 05:54 PM
reeve21 reeve21 is offline
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Originally Posted by Captain Jim View Post
For me, the downside of the H4n Pro is all the button pushes and wheel turns you have to make to get to the set up for recording.
Thanks for your input, Jim.

I have an H4n and while I like the sound, I agree that it is cumbersome.

Recently I've been running it directly to my ipad (needs a camera connector and a power boost in between). Apple's music memos app is dead simple, and I also have the mulitrack daw app which allows for some post recording processing. I'm glad to be done with desktop computer processing, it is overkill for my needs.

Good to know the Spire has good internal mics if I want to go that route.

Thanks again!
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  #191  
Old 12-31-2019, 12:26 PM
Captain Jim Captain Jim is offline
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One last project on the Spire Studio for the year. My partner came back from Jamaica for a family wedding with this song. He sent me tracks with piano and guitar, I added bass, drums, and vocal...



It's a bit low for my range, so we may be doing a pared down (piano and vocal) version in a different key after the new year.
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  #192  
Old 01-01-2020, 04:37 PM
lfoo6952 lfoo6952 is online now
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Thanks for sharing Captain Jim. Due to your posts and others, I got the Spire Studio for Christmas. I love the simplicity, the features, and the sound quality. I can now create a 4-track recording in about 10 minutes, which previously would have taken me over an hour on my old setup. I like the smartphone app as well.
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  #193  
Old 01-02-2020, 05:21 PM
Captain Jim Captain Jim is offline
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Originally Posted by lfoo6952 View Post
Thanks for sharing Captain Jim. Due to your posts and others, I got the Spire Studio for Christmas. I love the simplicity, the features, and the sound quality. I can now create a 4-track recording in about 10 minutes, which previously would have taken me over an hour on my old setup. I like the smartphone app as well.
Good to hear it's working for you. Feel free to share your results with us in this thread.
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  #194  
Old 01-07-2020, 12:16 PM
capefisherman capefisherman is offline
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I wish there was a way to add some equalization after a sound check but before recording with the Spire. All my recordings come out very bass-heavy and I then need to upload them to my computer and work with an equalizer. This is not a big deal for me but for use with which I'm usually using my Spire - sending files to guitar students as quickly and easily as possible - spending the extra time tweaking the recordings is something I just would rather not do. Not looking for super quality, just better balance. FWIW, I have the same issue whether I use the mic in the Spire or two good quality condenser mics (small & large diaphragm). If I'm missing something please let me know. Other than this issue I positively LOVE my Spire!

Gene

capecodacoustics.com
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  #195  
Old 01-07-2020, 05:49 PM
Captain Jim Captain Jim is offline
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Originally Posted by capefisherman View Post
I wish there was a way to add some equalization after a sound check but before recording with the Spire. All my recordings come out very bass-heavy and I then need to upload them to my computer and work with an equalizer. This is not a big deal for me but for use with which I'm usually using my Spire - sending files to guitar students as quickly and easily as possible - spending the extra time tweaking the recordings is something I just would rather not do. Not looking for super quality, just better balance. FWIW, I have the same issue whether I use the mic in the Spire or two good quality condenser mics (small & large diaphragm). If I'm missing something please let me know. Other than this issue I positively LOVE my Spire!

Gene

capecodacoustics.com
Have you tried varying the distance from the mic? I find that makes a difference in the tone with the Spire. If you feel the volume is too low by moving away, you can raise the level manually after you do the SoundCheck.
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