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  • Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

    First off a big thanks to Ed Froste for his really awesome layout of what is required. So based on that information, here is what I will be ordering from PE:

    390-801 Dayton mic

    248-576 mixer

    390-801 mic cable

    I already have a decent power amp I can dedicate for this. I have plenty of high quality RCA cables. My question is what sound card should I get? I have a HP Pavilion tower (model a6152n) running Vista Home Premium (Service Pack 2). It has an Intel Core 2 Quad CPU, running at 2.40 GHz, with 3.00 GB of RAM. This PC will never be used for HT. We use it for internet browsing and soon to be speaker measurement. Any help is greatly appreciated.
    Craig

    I drive way too fast to worry about cholesterol.

  • #2
    Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16829132006
    ASUS Xonar DX $59.99 after rebate shipped. SN is excellent. My D1 (same thing except for PCI instead of PCIE) tested 110 dB SN with a poor loop cable made from 2 six ft. long cables with poor splice. Tested at 112 dB by hardware reviewer. You may not need 8 channel out but it does not hurt anything and gives you the opportunity to try active crossover up to 4 way.
    Ted
    I was tired and got tired again so now I am Re tired.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

      You need a mini-boom mic stand, as well, 242-743.

      Your SKU for the cable is wrong. 20' XLR, presumably.

      Also, the slightly less expensive 248-574 Xenyx 502 now has phantom power, and may suffice. I'm not messing with Ed's recommendation, tho; you might ask him to comment, is all....

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

        I don't use a mixer, I use this:
        http://www.amazon.com/Blue-Microphon.../dp/B001EW5YQS
        It's far more convenient than a mixer, and works very well.
        I use HolmImpulse software with the internal card on a Toshiba laptop and it also works very well. The card tests pretty ragged, but is flat as a pancake after calibration. Speaking of which I calibrated with the amp in the loop as well, a simple procedure if you adjust it for unity gain.
        www.billfitzmaurice.com
        www.billfitzmaurice.info/forum

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        • #5
          Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

          Yes, I typed the wrong SKU for the cable. I was actually looking at 241-348.
          I will check into the 248-574 mixer.

          Thanks tedwilt for the sound card rec. Anyone else have a sound card suggestion? Thanks.

          Also, it says on the ARTA website that the free download demo version doesn't allow you to save files???? Is this true?
          Craig

          I drive way too fast to worry about cholesterol.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

            Originally posted by PWR RYD View Post

            Also, it says on the ARTA website that the free download demo version doesn't allow you to save files???? Is this true?
            Yes. You can use the software but can't save the files.
            http://www.diy-ny.com/

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

              I think the best route for a sound card is actually an external USB audio interface that has XLR inputs, so you can forget the mixer and let the box handle input and output together. I use the M-Audio MobilePre USB.
              Best Regards,

              Rory Buszka

              Taterworks Audio

              "The work of the individual still remains the spark which moves mankind ahead, even more than teamwork." - Igor I. Sikorsky

              If it works, but you don't know why it works, then you haven't done any engineering.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

                First off the 502 mixer with phantom power will work fine.

                If your current sound card has a "line in" and a "line out" ports it will work with ARTA. The extrnal sound card I use works well and I can move it from PC to PC, and I only use it for measurments (Soundeasy, ARTA). Also there are some sound cards that have phantom power and could replace the need for a mixer.
                Here is a USB card that adds "line-in, Line-out" to your PC's sound processor.

                A mic stand is nice to have, but other stands, poles, etc will work.

                ARTA (demo free version) will not allow you to save project files, however it will allow you to create .FRD files, which is all you need for use in XO programs (PCD, Speakerworkshop, etc)

                Hope this helps.
                Last edited by Froste; 09-29-2010, 11:19 PM. Reason: more info
                Ed
                ___________________________________________
                If "IFs" and "BUTs" were candy and nuts, everyday would be Christmas!
                _____________________________________________
                My WebSite

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                • #9
                  Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

                  Originally posted by Taterworks View Post
                  I think the best route for a sound card is actually an external USB audio interface that has XLR inputs, so you can forget the mixer and let the box handle input and output together. I use the M-Audio MobilePre USB.
                  +1 for the mobile pre. not that theres anything wrong with any of the other products that have been mentioned, but IMHO it is nice to only pay for, and deal with, a single box that gets you both a high quality external sound card and mic preamp.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

                    Mobile Pre specs:
                    48KHz
                    Digital Audio 16-bit
                    SNR -88dB, A-weighted

                    ASUS Xonar DX specs:
                    192KHz
                    24-bit
                    SNR -112dB

                    Most new motherboards have better built in sound than the Mobile Pre.
                    No motherboard even comes close to the ASUS Xonar cards.

                    How much money do you save getting this low quality setup? None
                    I was tired and got tired again so now I am Re tired.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

                      But the ASUS Xonar DX @ $80 has better specs BUT it is not be installed in my dedicated laptop I am setting up for measurements. Hence the external USB sound card is my only choice. Great advice, but not applicable to everyone. For me, the Mobil Pre is my best and "only" option.

                      George
                      "In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn't merely try to train him to be semi-human. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming partly a dog." - Edward Hoagland

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

                        Originally posted by moosespeaker View Post
                        But the ASUS Xonar DX @ $80 has better specs BUT it is not be installed in my dedicated laptop I am setting up for measurements. Hence the external USB sound card is my only choice. Great advice, but not applicable to everyone. For me, the Mobil Pre is my best and "only" option.

                        George
                        +1
                        Anyone starting from scratch should consider a USB solution. There are many cost effective 2 ch I/O USB boxes with built-in mic pres to choose from. Plus no point in buying a cheap mixer if all you need is a one channel preamp w/ phantom power.

                        I already had an M-audio delta44 (PCI based), but I can never use that on my laptop or move it easily to another machine. I am satisfied with the quality of the m-audio, but if had to start over I'd look at their USB offering. Check out sweetwater etc - there's plenty to choose from.

                        I also have a LINE 6 KB37, which is USB. ARTA has a loopback test procedure to gauge the (THD) quality of your soundcard and even that passed with flying colors. unfortunately it is built into a musical intrument keyboard, so there goes the portability aspect -
                        I may end up taking my own advice here....
                        BEER: Proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy

                        I've measured many things I cannot hear; and heard things I cannot measure...

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

                          I have both M-Audio Fast Track Pro and ART USB Dual Pre.

                          I used the ART with HOLMImpulse to do one of the designs in "Flex Your Mettle," and then confirmed it with CLIO. I suspect many of the available options will work just fine for this, despite some having appreciably "better" specs than others....

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

                            Originally posted by tedwilt View Post
                            Mobile Pre specs:
                            48KHz
                            Digital Audio 16-bit
                            SNR -88dB, A-weighted

                            ASUS Xonar DX specs:
                            192KHz
                            24-bit
                            SNR -112dB

                            Most new motherboards have better built in sound than the Mobile Pre.
                            No motherboard even comes close to the ASUS Xonar cards.

                            How much money do you save getting this low quality setup? None
                            The Xonar DX doesn't take a balanced input.

                            Money saved = the cost of the mixer.
                            Best Regards,

                            Rory Buszka

                            Taterworks Audio

                            "The work of the individual still remains the spark which moves mankind ahead, even more than teamwork." - Igor I. Sikorsky

                            If it works, but you don't know why it works, then you haven't done any engineering.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Question before I pull the trigger on measurement gear

                              For my laptop I use the Mobile Pre. It supposedly runs in a variety of sampling modes up to 192 khz but I've only been able to get it to work at 48. Apparently my OS (XP Pro) has issues with higher sampling rates. Other than that, it's worked out fine. As others have pointed out, the portability with USB connections, the convenience and performance of balanced XLR and the phantom power make this a difficult choice to beat for the price.

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