Audio Interface for Guitar/Mic?

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Audio Interface for Guitar/Mic?

Postby JET » Thu Oct 21, 2010 9:49 pm

:?: I am so happy to find this forum. I am seriously hoping for help. I am looking for an audio interface that will work with my Linux OS. I am running Energy XT, Ardour, Audacity etc. I have an M-audio Fast Track with Phantom power but have been unsuccessful with getting it to work. It likely is not compatible. I also have a G-major II guitar effects (TC Helicon), a little Behringer Xenyx mixer (also with Phantom), and I was hoping to put together a fast little, portable rig for live and studio use. I am not thrilled with Windows and would prefer to use Linux exclusively. I am a guitarist and I am quite impressed with Linux. However, I'm not overly impressed with the lack of info/drivers for guitar interfaces. What do you use? Any suggestions or ideas on what I can use or if I can run the interfaces I already have somehow? I just want to play and use a mic in a linux environment. Thanks in advance!

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Re: Audio Interface for Guitar/Mic?

Postby funkmuscle » Fri Oct 22, 2010 12:18 pm

that's why I started the thread about linux guitarist... I too was frustrated with all the synth and electronic apps and lack of guitar apps.... :?
guitarix is awesome... still early stage but sounds great. I use it with IR files for the mic'd cab sound.. I've compared it with many vsts and I think it sounds as good.
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Re: Audio Interface for Guitar/Mic?

Postby Pablo » Fri Oct 22, 2010 7:57 pm

Hi JET, Welcome!

What audio card do you have, exactly? I have read about different m-audio fast track cards... Pro, Ultra... maybe others, with different results. Knowing the exact model is crucial when it comes to linux support. Typing "lsusb" in a terminal is good for you and for helpers.

Some people here use the EDIROL UA25 and UA25-EX. They seem to work very well in Linux but wait for more hints and go on searching the internet.

I myself have a very simple Behringer UCA-202 that works out of the box. I have used it with a guitar and a mic (the mic through a mixer with phantom and the guitar directly to the audio card, then jack and then rakarrack or guitarix, or admittedly, a vst virtual amp). In your case, you could connect the guitar through the TC Helicon to the audio card. In the software side the simplest setup would be jack audio server with the system: captures connected to the system: playbacks.

Some sites and threads I have read lately.

www.alsa-project.org
http://www.ardour.org/node/3466 (and links provided in that thread)
http://www.ardour.org/node/2057
http://www.ardour.org/node/3481
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1602175

Cheers! Pablo
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Re: Audio Interface for Guitar/Mic?

Postby AutoStatic » Fri Oct 22, 2010 8:28 pm

The M-Audio is supported but maybe you still need a patch: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=1581&st=0&sk=t&sd=a
What distro are you using? And welcome of course!

Best,

Jeremy
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Re: Audio Interface for Guitar/Mic?

Postby funkmuscle » Fri Oct 22, 2010 8:44 pm

sorry, I did forget Rakarrack... awesome effects rack which also has a great amp/cab/mic sim... the effects I love especially being a Hendrix fan, the Vibe I use often.
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Re: Audio Interface for Guitar/Mic?

Postby JET » Tue Oct 26, 2010 10:10 pm

I want to thank all of you for the great replies. I am so frustrated with the lack of Linux Support.
I forgot to mention I also have a Behringer UCA-202. My Fast Track is the MKII version, it shipped with Pro Tools LE. It's currently listed on Ebay. I am tentatively giving up on it and going on a search for something else. I have tons of software but it seems guitar player's hardware appears to be on the endangered species list.

The software that came with the Fast Track is utterly useless without upgrading to the full version. I am like why bother?! Anyway, it requires the pro tools to run. I am looking also at an Alesis IO2 Express. I heard this might run on Linux? I am pretty disappointed that such a great OS has so few options for Guitarists. :cry:
Mine is Ubuntu. Thanks again!!!! :D
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Re: Audio Interface for Guitar/Mic?

Postby funkmuscle » Tue Oct 26, 2010 11:57 pm

out of all musicians, us guitarists are the least technical... way more keyboard and electronic musicians than us in the linux world. :(

you do sound like me the way I feel and as soon as something cool is developed on linux, the Macs and Windows jump in and I maybe wrong but I thing that spreads the devs too thin...
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Re: Audio Interface for Guitar/Mic?

Postby morko » Thu Nov 04, 2010 7:14 am

Check http://www.alsa-project.org/main/index.php/Matrix:Main before you buy new soundcard for linux. For firewire devices http://www.ffado.org/.

I have Fast Track Pro (usb device). It is not so expensive and has also phantom power. But it only works 16-bit in linux. It is an ok device for its price still. Whatever soundcard you will buy be it's not gonna be out-of-the-box experience. :P
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Re: Audio Interface for Guitar/Mic?

Postby raboof » Thu Nov 04, 2010 12:23 pm

JET wrote:My Fast Track is the MKII version


Looks like the Fast Track MKII is not yet in the USB ID database maintained by http://www.linux-usb.org (http://www.linux-usb.org/usb.ids). Could you post the output of 'lsusb' when the device is plugged in?
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Re: Audio Interface for Guitar/Mic?

Postby transmogrifox » Fri Nov 05, 2010 4:16 am

JET wrote:I want to thank all of you for the great replies. I am so frustrated with the lack of Linux Support.
I forgot to mention I also have a Behringer UCA-202.... :D


The UCA-202 works out of the box for me. Due to the low input impedance (standard 600-ohm audio interface) you need a buffer/preamp of some sort. Usually a clean-type pedal can serve the purpose. For example, I have a Line6 echo pedal. Before I made a proper preamp, I set wet/dry all dry and simply use it to buffer the guitar input.

Stompboxes with active bypass are also a good bet. The Ibanez TS-series pedals are generally active bypass, so they will be buffering the signal when bypassed. The majority of stompboxes are active bypass.

Anyway, once you have something serving as a line driver/buffer then you only need the audio cables to adapt 1/4" Mono to an RCA. I usually put my guitar into the left channel and put a microphone in the right channel to use with the vocoder in Rakarrack.

I am an electronics hobbyist, so I have built my preamp into an Altoids tin, and that serves my needs.
http://transmogrifox.webs.com/altoid1.jpg
http://transmogrifox.webs.com/altoid2.jpg

I'm not one who thinks 16-bit is bad quality audio (esp for guitar). Many of these 16 bit cards can achieve 90dB dynamic range, which is good enough for the girls I go with. The trick is to adjust the signal level going in so you're using maximum resolution without clipping. The UCA-202 has served me well.

If your Behringer mixer is one of the USB models it is likely it will work with Linux.

BTW -- for a guitarist you may be interested in GNUguitarINUX:
http://gnuguitarinux.sourceforge.net/

I just tried out the v1.0RC today. It's an incredibly low-resource environment, thus leaving maximum processing power available for audio work. What's great about it is you can burn it to a USB stick and carry it around in your pocket. Then you can turn almost any computer into a guitar FX processor ;). I think it's very slick.
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Re: Audio Interface for Guitar/Mic?

Postby horo » Fri Nov 05, 2010 8:39 am

Hi,

some facts about UCA202 tuning.

Ciao, Martin
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