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Old 05-25-2019, 09:42 AM   #11
Human being with feelings
karbomusic's Avatar
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 26,934

I wonder what people here's thoughts on this are?
Since digital cannot exceed zero and analog can, the digital scale is "pushed down" comparatively to allow room for the analog gear to go beyond zero without exceeding the zero dBFS limit in digital. This means that if your analog gear is set to roughly unity gain. 0dbVU, it will appear somewhere around -18dbFS RMS(give or take a couple of dB depending on the sound card manufacturer).

The myth part is that once in the box, or if it was always in the box (such as VSTs or samples) that there is some sonic magic to being at -18 dBFS RMS but there is none, ignore that and just remember that unity gain in analog lives somewhere roughly around 18 dBFS RMS in the box. Note that I keep mentioning -18 dBFS RMS because that's important.

I'm trying to record vocals and I have to turn up my mic preamp gain trim way high to get my singing level to be around -18dBFS on average. The downside is that with the trim set high, I can hear the noise floor and it's off-putting.
Then your mic doesn't have enough output and you are having to push the preamp to get the level even up to "zero" in analog, it is unrelated to digital, as in if this were a pure analog environment you'd be saying "wow, I really had to crank the preamp on this mic to get a decent level on my analog board"

The Cloud Lifter idea is OK (I have one) but it's only going to help if it's gain is cleaner than pushing your existing preamp hard, cuz there is no magic in audio.
Music is what feelings sound like.
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