Mixing desk to PC

edited December 2004 in Recording Studio
I'm trying to set up a home studio. I would like to connect a mixing desk to my PC. I have a Saturday job at a studio but don't really have much knowledge of equipment or musical stuff so I apologise for my ignorance in advance.

To connect a desk to my PC to record stuff like drums nd guitar do I need a di box between the desk and computer and if so will any di box do or do they need special features to do this.

Also will I need a new soundcard as all I have is a average PC soundcard with 1 Mic input and 2 speaker outputs, all are mini jack females.

Lastly to connect stuf like a Midi keyboard do I need a Midi interface or can I just plug them into a channel on the desk.

I would be greatful for any help anyone could give me.

Thank you.;)


  • edited December 2004
    Right, looks like your gonna need a new soundcard. You need one with a line in socket, which is usually a mini jack connector.

    For the Midi keyboard you can buy an adapter (not very expensive) so you can plug it into the game controller port on the back of your PC. The adapter should give you, game port one end, and 2 x 5 pin din cables the other end. Youll then need to plug a midi cable in each, and then connect the midi cables to the keyboard in both the midi in and out connectors.
  • edited December 2004
    Thanks very much for the info.

    So after I get a new soundcard would I need a direct injection box to plug a mixing desk into it?

    Also could I get away with a small desk if I use it to input instruments such as guitars with a recording program like Cubase and just change the channel on Cubase but not on the desk?

    1st guitar--mixing desk channel 1--PC(channel 1 on cubase)

    2nd guitar--mixing desk channel 1--PC(channel 2 on Cubase)

    Thank you for your help
  • edited December 2004
    to be honest ive never bothered with a mixing desk.

    All I use is a standard 3 channel mixer and i only use that as a midpoint between my mic and PC. It still gives me control over the gain, bass, mid and treble, just so i dont get clipping on input.

    You can control virtually everything within Cubase anyway. The only thing you dont want is clipping to occur on the way in.

    If your're in a band (which sounds like you are) then you prob will need a mixing desk but i dont really know too much about them. Ive got a powered mixer that i use very occasionally (phonic Powerpod 740) when i want to have a couple of instruments on the go at once, but that goes straight from the output on the mixer, and straight into the PC.

    It might be an idea to record each instrument individually, then sequence them all in Cubase afterwards so you get them all mixed together. You dont really wanna record a whole track and find that hi-hats are too loud or something. Thats the way i add vocals to a track. Basically i make the track first, then get the vocalist to do the vocals but record them accappella, then mix them into the track afterwards.

    Makes it better quality overall. (but it may be different for you)

    Sorry i probably havent been much help!
  • edited December 2004
    No,you've bin a big help.

    Cheers everything.It all is a lot clearer now.First Im gonna try to get a cheap version of Cubase on ebay or sumthin like that.

    After that I'm gonna get a new soundcard.Then get a small mixer.

    But can I just connect the mixer to the PC without needing anything else, eg. some kinda transformer thingy?Or can I just connect it to my PC and start making stuff?

    Thanks for everything.
  • edited December 2004
    Some 1 I no has just told me that I will need a A to D convertor in between of a mixer and a PC, is this true or can I get away without 1?

    thanks, Scottyrocker.
  • edited December 2004
    If you get a soundcard with a breakout box, then you won't need an analogue to digital converter, because the breakout box should have one.

    You're probably gonna ask what is a breakout box, normally a soundcard is card that slots into your computers motherboard, the better soundcards, tend to have breakout boxers, which is a seperate little box, which can fit in your cd bay, and they'll have their own fancy nobs and connections.

    To connect ur pc to ur mixer you'll need certain cables:

    2x Phono to 2x 6.3mm Mono Jacks (go from breakout box Line Ins to Mixer Main Outs)

    2x Phono to 2x 6.3mm Mono Jacks (aswell as 3 : 3.5mm stereo mini jack to 2x phono adaptors)

    Cables from the Ctrl Room Outs on Mixer (2x 6.3mm Mono Jacks) to your Monitors

    Or you could get away with one set of the first cables, if you use the Tape Outs of ur mixer instead of the Main Outs.

    You'll know what I mean when you get ur mixer, since all the outs would be labelled.

    As for midi keyboard, theres plenty of keyboards out there now that connect through usb 2.0 ports. Thats the best way to go, reliable and quick. Best midi keyboars to go for are M-Audio or Evolution.

    Any more questions? Just holla
  • edited December 2004
    Cheers boys uve both been a huge help.:clap:

    Uve answered all the questions I had but if I think of anymore ill post em on ere.

    Nice one, ScottyRocker.:hi:
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