Focusrite Scarlett 2i4 - bad pre's quality. What to buy next?

Discussion in 'Recording Studio' started by Oklep, Mar 19, 2017.

  1. Oklep

    Oklep SS.org Regular

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    Hello guys

    I own Scarlett 2i4 (first gen) for few years now, I bought it because everyone were saying that it has amazing transparent preamps.
    But I just saw this video, and I was shocked. It sounds horrible. I never thought that scarlett could be my weakest link in the chain.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gDkohU-WxvE

    So my question is. What to buy next? What about Steinberg UR22 mk2? Could that be the step up from DI quality point of view?
     
  2. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear

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    a Radial DI box by the sound of it :) The gain issue with those preamps is indeed ridiculous, apparently it was fixed for 2nd gen
     
  3. shnizzle

    shnizzle johnny

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    a DI box is probably the cheapest and quickest way to improve your DI quality. the Radial Pro 48 i used in that video is about 100 bucks and it majorly improves the quality. otherwise i´d probably look into the 2nd Gen Scarlett interfaces. the other day i finally heard a DI recorded with it and it sounded very good.
     
  4. budda

    budda Guiterrorizer Contributor

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    So you had a product, enjoyed it, saw a video where it was (possibly rightly) bashed, and now you need to replace it?
     
  5. Oklep

    Oklep SS.org Regular

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    No. This is my first audio interface, I have no experience with other products. Therefore, I have no idea if scarlett has gread preamps or not (if its good enough for me or not).
    Thats why Im thinking about replacing it after that video
     
  6. Metropolis

    Metropolis SS.org Regular

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    It really depends on your setup and overall signal chain what you use. Pre's are not that bad, they only handle instrument level signal like s**t. Because they are not designed to do only that, like input of guitar amps, di-boxes etc.

    So you could buy a decent di-box or new interface, what ever works for you and your setup.

    Videos like these are eye-openers and deliver new information about audio recording. For beginners it's not always so clear what is a good quality sound. And you learn it by trial and error, making mistakes.
     
  7. schwiz

    schwiz Lefty

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    Keep your interface, buy a DI box and call it good. Your scarlett preamp has nothing to do with the sub-par DI signal. The issue is with impedance and the signal level coming from your guitar going to your interface. A guitar signal is a high impedance signal and the DI box will convert the signal from instrument level, to a mic level signal.

    Guitar -> DI Box -> Interface (pad)

    I just bought the BOSS DI-1 active DI box.
     
  8. jerm

    jerm SS.org Regular

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    If you're plugging directly into the front of the Focusrite with a regular TRS/guitar cable, you're not using the preamp. You need to use an XLR cable to engage the preamp of the Focusrite.

    Using a DI box will improve your DI's rather than just using the instrument input (TRS cable) method.
     
  9. Oklep

    Oklep SS.org Regular

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    Thank you all.

    Yes, I am using regular guitar cable. I had no idea that I need to use DI box to get full potential. Well, time to get one
     
  10. trebal

    trebal SS.org Regular

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    The best is record with a DI box. Is there a lot of difference from one generation to another of Scarlett?
     
  11. Webmaestro

    Webmaestro Ibanez Fanatic Contributor

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    Odd, I've never had such issues with my 1st gen 2i4 (I'm somewhat ignorant about all this as well). My signal chain is:

    Guitar --> Axe-Fx II --> Scarlett 2i4 --> Monitors (and Computer via USB)

    Maybe I'm also bypassing this problematic preamp ya'll are talking about?
     
  12. shnizzle

    shnizzle johnny

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    yeah, we´re talking about plugging the guitar straight into the interfaces instrument input. using the Axe you most likely plug into a line input which is completely different and the Axe also has an input specifically made for guitar. so you´re good.
     
  13. dax21

    dax21 SS.org Regular

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    2nd gen Scarlett line (easily identified by the white Focusrite logo on top of the unit, unlike the black logo on the 1st gen) has lower latency, improved preamps and handles high gain/ouput instruments way better.

    Apparently bunch of people managed to get 2nd gen drivers to work on the original units for the latency improvements.

    http://masters-of-music.com/1st-gen-focusrite-scarletts-work-with-2nd-gen-drivers-for-lower-latency/
     
    Mathemagician likes this.
  14. trebal

    trebal SS.org Regular

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    Thanks man!! I'll investigate about this.
     
  15. oc616

    oc616 Control Deck Wins

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    Thankfully I got the 2nd gen without even realizing this was an issue. There are still problems with the cross-gen driver fix from what I've heard, but it seems to be a case-by-case issue. Probably your best bet.
     
  16. jvms

    jvms SS.org Regular

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    Can a POD HD with all effects and sims bypassed be used as a DI box for the Scarlett?
     
  17. schwiz

    schwiz Lefty

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    Yes. On the Pro there is even a "DI Out" output.
     
  18. jvms

    jvms SS.org Regular

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    Is there a difference betweem the DI Out and the Line Out with everything bypassed? Also, I heard the MXR M80 Bass Distortion can be used as a DI when the pedal is off. Does anyone have any idea how that works.
     
  19. schwiz

    schwiz Lefty

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    Very much so. Line out = -10dBv. DI out is around -30dBV I want to say.

    If you go line out (with everything bypassed) you will want to set your interface input to Line level.

    If you go DI out, you will want to set your interface input to Pad.

    http://recordmixandmaster.com/2010-02-mic-line-and-instrument-level-whats-the-difference
     
  20. jvms

    jvms SS.org Regular

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    All right. And if I use my POD HD 400, everything bypassed into the Line Input of my Scarlett 6i6, will it sound better or have a better quality signal than using a guitar into the Instrument Input? I know that most guitars and basses clip it, but hypotetically, let's pretend they don't. I'm mainly worried about sound and quality and not the clipping issues,
     

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