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Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

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Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby GaryW23 » Mon Jun 18, 2018 9:56 pm

Hi all,

I have a Roland Quad Capture which I'm very happy with. I would like to use the additional inputs, but there's nothing I know of on the market that will allow me to do this.

I only want to be able to use all 4 inputs on the card - any ideas/suggestions (other than buying another interface)?

Cheers

Gary
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Re: Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby James Perrett » Mon Jun 18, 2018 11:30 pm

It appears that you need to send a digital SPDIF signal to the SPDIF inputs in order to use the additional inputs. So you need an analogue to digital convertor and possibly mic preamps. I've just noticed that the Zoom U-44 interface offers a stand-alone A/D and D/A function and they're being sold at just £79 from a number of places at the moment so it might be worth a look. I've just bought one myself as a portable interface but haven't had a good chance to try it yet.
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Re: Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:03 am

GaryW23 wrote:I would like to use the additional inputs, but there's nothing I know of on the market that will allow me to do this.

By 'additional inputs' I assume you mean the S/PDIF 'coaxial' inputs on the back for channels 3/4? If so, then what you need is a two-channel A-D converter or a two-channel mic preamp with built-in converter -- both providing an S/PDIF output.

I've no idea of your budget, but possible options range from things like the ART Digital MPA II two-channel tube mic pre at around £330, to the Grace Design m201 with A-D card at around £3300!

Here's a search on Thomann for two-channel mic preamps with digital outputs:

https://www.thomann.de/gb/preamps.html?feature-52889-first=2&feature-52889-last=2&feature-52890%5B0%5D=Optional&feature-52890%5B1%5D=S/PDIF&feature-52890%5B2%5D=AES%2C%20S/PDIF&feature-52890%5B3%5D=ADAT%2C%20AES%2C%20S/PDIF&feature-52890%5B4%5D=ADAT%2C%20AES&feature-52890%5B5%5D=MADI%2C%20S/PDIF%2C%20ADAT%2C%20AES/EBU&feature-52890%5B6%5D=AES&feature-52890%5B7%5D=USB%2C%20S/PDIF&feature-52890%5B8%5D=ADAT%2C%20S/PDIF&feature-52890%5B9%5D=ADAT%2C%20AES%2C%20MADI&feature-52891-first=2&feature-52891-last=2&filter=true&oa=pra&price-first=0
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Re: Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby James Perrett » Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:32 pm

I've just had a quick listen to the mic inputs on the U-44. They would probably be fine for close mic'd sources but they're pretty noisy - probably on a par with my cheap old MM mixer. I tried both a Shure SM58 dynamic and a Line Audio CM3 condenser mic - the condenser mic gave a higher level than the dynamic (as expected) and the sound was fine but the noise was quite a bit higher than I'd expect from a more expensive preamp.
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Re: Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby GaryW23 » Tue Jun 26, 2018 3:30 pm

Thanks for all the suggestions folks.

Hugh, I think that £3300 to expand a sub £200 interface is overkill - may as well get a new interface for that outlay :D
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Re: Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Tue Jun 26, 2018 3:42 pm

GaryW23 wrote:Hugh, I think that £3300 to expand a sub £200 interface is overkill - may as well get a new interface for that outlay :D

:lol: Sure... but it was a true story: female vocalist wanted to find her ideal mic. Paul White and I pooled our personal mic collections and some review product lying around and organised a recording session. She then went away with the anonymous files and chose the mics she liked best (including opinions of others she trusted).

The two mics she chose -- and was very confident in her choices were an Audio Technica AT2020 (£80) and a Flea49 (£3300)... The AT was used on stage and the Flea in the studio.

H
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Re: Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby GaryW23 » Tue Jun 26, 2018 4:04 pm

James Perrett wrote:It appears that you need to send a digital SPDIF signal to the SPDIF inputs in order to use the additional inputs. So you need an analogue to digital convertor and possibly mic preamps. I've just noticed that the Zoom U-44 interface offers a stand-alone A/D and D/A function and they're being sold at just £79 from a number of places at the moment so it might be worth a look. I've just bought one myself as a portable interface but haven't had a good chance to try it yet.

Thanks James. This is perfect for my needs, as I plan to use it for line inputs anyway (additional outs on a drum machine). Will certainly check one out.
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Re: Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby James Perrett » Tue Jun 26, 2018 8:47 pm

GaryW23 wrote:Thanks James. This is perfect for my needs, as I plan to use it for line inputs anyway (additional outs on a drum machine). Will certainly check one out.

The line inputs on the U44 seem fine - certainly quieter than the budget Behringer interface that it replaces. The headphone output also seems better than both the built-in sound on my laptop and the Behringer.
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Re: Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby Matt Houghton » Wed Jun 27, 2018 5:45 am

FWIW I used to use TC Electronic M300 effects processors for line level to S/PDIF conversion (simply because I had them around). They worked just fine (with the FX bypassed of course!). They (and the almost identical M350) are available fairly cheaply on eBay -- £70-100, and you get a fun toy to play with too!
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Re: Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby Martin Walker » Wed Jun 27, 2018 12:44 pm

Hugh Robjohns wrote:it was a true story: female vocalist wanted to find her ideal mic. Paul White and I pooled our personal mic collections and some review product lying around and organised a recording session. She then went away with the anonymous files and chose the mics she liked best (including opinions of others she trusted).

The two mics she chose -- and was very confident in her choices were an Audio Technica AT2020 (£80) and a Flea49 (£3300)... The AT was used on stage and the Flea in the studio.

Great story Hugh, and the results are always fascinating when people use their ears to choose, rather than their preconceptions! :clap:


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Re: Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Jun 27, 2018 1:46 pm

I'm curious how she arrived at the decision to buy two mics? Was it down to one sounding better suited to live use for some reason or was it made after prices/identities were disclosed?
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Re: Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby Hugh Robjohns » Thu Jun 28, 2018 12:38 pm

No she came back and said she couldn't decide between those two, and then when she learned the costs decided to get both... (what's an extra £80 when you're blowing £3k?) and use the cheap on for live... The look of the big Flea helped with the studio inspiration too, I think! ;-)

H
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Re: Using SPDIF input on Roland Quad Capture

Postby Sam Spoons » Thu Jun 28, 2018 1:29 pm

:thumbup:
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