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Logic 9 Low input volume from M-Audio Fast Track Ultra

Discussion in 'Logic 9' started by Harmonybear, Feb 13, 2012.

  1. Harmonybear

    Harmonybear New Member

    Greetings -

    I'm new to Logic Pro (9) after working with Digital Performer and ProTools - both in limited ways - I'm not an engineer. Logic and my 4-track interface are working well together except for this one issue. It may be that the pre isn't powerful enough on the Fast Track. I have to crank it to the equivalent of 8 or 9 (out of 10) to get a decent audio signal with a mic or guitar (Sure SM56, Fender Telecaster).

    MacBook Pro, 15-inch, Mid 2009
    M-Audio Fast Track Ultra (4-track) USB MIDI/Audio Interface

    Thanks in advance for any suggestions.
     
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  3. CSeye

    CSeye Senior member

    Hello,

    Did you use the M-Audio FTU with DP and PT? Same issue?

    Are you having trouble getting enough input gain? If so what is the strongest level the channel strip meter registers?

    Or are you having trouble listening to the playback?

    Have you searched at the M-Audio forum for clues?
    http://forums.m-audio.com/showthrea...put-signal-is-too-low-(-how-to-solve-it/page2

    Is the unit powered via USB or with a wall wart?

    I've never used the M-Audio FTU, but there does some to be a significant amount of web-buzz regarding its low input gain.

    How do you record? Several inputs in one pass? Or one input (mic or instrument) per pass? Do you need MIDI inputs?
     
  4. Harmonybear

    Harmonybear New Member

    Hi -

    Thanks for the quick reply! Yep, I did have the same issue with the DP and PT but, if memory serves, not to the same degree as with LP, which is why I posted here.I did browse the M-Audio forums and (as with the link you provided - which is appreciated!) nothing led to a solution. My FTU is going in direct to my MacBook Pro (not through a hub). It's powered through a wall outlet. I can get a usable level but it's only at very high FTU levels that I reach 50% or higher on the LP channel strip. At that level (= 8 or 9) the gain increase is significantly higher per increment on the FTU. So, once I reach a suitable level I don't have any fine control on the input from the FTU. I'm recording one input per pass; the low input occurs even in a project with a single audio track.

    Nope, I'm not married to my FTU. There are other issues with it that are bothersome. In playback through the FTU the stereo spectrum is unstable at low volume; the left channel appears first. I suppose this might just be crummy pots on the FTU; after cranking it up for a moment that effect is lessened a bit but the stereo balance still slides to the left as I approach zero.

    As I write I'm seeing my FTU on e-bay . .
    I can run my Yamaha P120 (which doesn't have a built-in MIDI interface) through my Axion 25 when I need 88-key MIDI. That's a little awkward physically but if it saves me $ on a replacement audio interface I can live with it.

    So, any recommendations on a particularly LP9-friendly audio interface?

    Thanks again - your response really helped clarify my situation.

    Cheers!
     
  5. CSeye

    CSeye Senior member

    Regarding L9 friendly audio interfaces, based on my personal use:
    1. MOTU- Big bang for the buck in terms of features/price. Another huge plus is that their drivers are always ready for the next OSX update and a backwards compatible. I have an old 828 mkll with the Black Lion modification. Web-buzz does indicate some concerns with the new Audio Express.

    2. Apogee will give you high class sonic performance. :thmbup: A comparison I did of the MOTU and my Ensemble produced startling results. There was a sense of air or space that was just not there in the MOTU. On the other hand most MOTU interfaces allow you to insert your prize vintage preamp or whatever into the recording signal chain. A separate Fastlane gives me MIDI connections when using the Apogee.

    I also have the Apogee One which sounds great. It's a one input, 1/8 inch stereo output with built-in mic and a very small foot print.

    My big concerns relate to balancing audio quality, features that I would actually use (like built-in MIDI connectors), and immediacy & quality of the software drivers.

    I'm sure others will have recommendations to offer as well.

    Enjoy the research and decision making process.
     
  6. Harmonybear

    Harmonybear New Member

    Thanks - After surfing manufacturer's sites and reading reviews, it's pretty clear that the Apogee Duet 2 is the cutting edge. It would be perfect for me but, alas, the price is prohibitive. Apogee is offing some refurbished original generation Duets but with the troubling caveat that support will soon end for the original Duet. That begs a question about the Duet 2: How long before it, too, is abandoned like one of Newt's ex-wives? The Apogee One is a very appealing too. If it's orphaned the loss isn't as great. From what I've read so far, the preamps and the AD/DA are not as high quality as in the Duet but from most accounts the Apogee One eclipses all other AIs at its price point. My current mic is a Shure SM56 - very basic! I'm guessing the onboard mic on the Apogee One is a better performer for my home studio.

    Thanks again for helping to herd my cats.
     

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