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Cubase Artist 10 w/ Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 - How do I adjust tracking levels?

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Cubase Artist 10 w/ Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 - How do I adjust tracking levels?

Postby Rhys Llewellyn » Sun Apr 12, 2020 6:21 am

I'm currently tracking guitars. I'm DI'ing straight in to the interface and using plugins for my sound. This is all fine, but I'm stuck figuring out how I can raise the level of the guitar whilst tracking. I only need to raise the volume marginally, to hear myself better while I'm recording.

Am I being exceedingly daft here? I can't just turn up the interfaces's input for obvious reasons. I can't adjust Cubase's input fader for the same reasons. I also can't turn up the channel strip I'm recording to because that will alter my mix.

Any suggestions please? Ideally, if possible, leading to a solution that will allow me to adjust a single fader for any given input, rather than having to create multiple channels and do some kind of clever routing. Surely it shouldn't be that difficult? It seems like that should be a fundamental objective, to be able to control this. Having done some Googling, I was led to Cubase's Control Room, but that is for Pro users only and, I believe, requires additional outputs anyway.

Thank you :)
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Re: Cubase Artist 10 w/ Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 - How do I adjust tracking levels?

Postby Music Wolf » Sun Apr 12, 2020 7:36 am

Rhys Llewellyn wrote:I also can't turn up the channel strip I'm recording to because that will alter my mix.


??????

Turn up the channel fader whilst recording (or push the others down if you are running out of headroom) then bring it back down on playback.

You signal should be recorded 'pre-fader' so the positon of the fader has no effect on what is recorded into Cubase. You can try for yourself. Record a short section of guitar with the fader up then drop the fader to zero and record another section, now play back both sections with the fader back up. They'll be the same level.
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Re: Cubase Artist 10 w/ Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 - How do I adjust tracking levels?

Postby Rhys Llewellyn » Sun Apr 12, 2020 11:01 am

Music Wolf wrote:
Rhys Llewellyn wrote:I also can't turn up the channel strip I'm recording to because that will alter my mix.


??????

Turn up the channel fader whilst recording (or push the others down if you are running out of headroom) then bring it back down on playback.

You signal should be recorded 'pre-fader' so the positon of the fader has no effect on what is recorded into Cubase. You can try for yourself. Record a short section of guitar with the fader up then drop the fader to zero and record another section, now play back both sections with the fader back up. They'll be the same level.

Sorry, perhaps I've used the wrong terminology or something.

Would you mind elaborating which fader you mean?

So I have my input (input 1). This is set to 0, with the trim set appropriately on my interface. Then I've opened up a mono audio track, which outputs to the stereo bus and uses input 1 as the input. There is obviously also the fader for this track (let's call it track fader).

Which of these faders should I be able to adjust without upsetting the mix or input?

I have tried both of these and as previously mentioned, increasing the input fader causes the recording signal to increase, which isn't what I want. Increasing track fader does indeed boost the volume, but it alters my mix, which is again, not what I want to do. I wish to alter the volume independently of both of these.

Thanks.
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Re: Cubase Artist 10 w/ Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 - How do I adjust tracking levels?

Postby desmond » Sun Apr 12, 2020 11:05 am

Rhys Llewellyn wrote:Increasing track fader does indeed boost the volume, but it alters my mix, which is again, not what I want to do. I wish to alter the volume independently of both of these.

I'm not a Cubase user, but my DAW of choice has a feature called "independent monitoring level", where, when you put a track into record mode (or input monitor mode), the channel fader has a second, independent monitoring level for just this scenario. It means you can set the fader to the best monitoring position while recording, and as soon as you drop out of record, the channel will return to it's regular mix level.

Maybe Cubase has something similar?
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Re: Cubase Artist 10 w/ Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 - How do I adjust tracking levels?

Postby Rhys Llewellyn » Sun Apr 12, 2020 11:24 am

desmond wrote:
Rhys Llewellyn wrote:Increasing track fader does indeed boost the volume, but it alters my mix, which is again, not what I want to do. I wish to alter the volume independently of both of these.

I'm not a Cubase user, but my DAW of choice has a feature called "independent monitoring level", where, when you put a track into record mode (or input monitor mode), the channel fader has a second, independent monitoring level for just this scenario. It means you can set the fader to the best monitoring position while recording, and as soon as you drop out of record, the channel will return to it's regular mix level.

Maybe Cubase has something similar?

Thank you, I'll give that term a Google and hope something comes up :)
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Re: Cubase Artist 10 w/ Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 - How do I adjust tracking levels?

Postby Kwackman » Sun Apr 12, 2020 11:45 am

Rhys Llewellyn wrote:Increasing track fader does indeed boost the volume, but it alters my mix, which is again, not what I want to do.

I agree with Music Wolf.
Unless you have fader automation built into the mix, why not just lift the track fader a few dB for recording, then move the fader back down to it's original level for playback? Your mix is back where it was.

There are a few other ways round this, but the above is the simplest.
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Re: Cubase Artist 10 w/ Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 - How do I adjust tracking levels?

Postby CS70 » Sun Apr 12, 2020 12:08 pm

Rhys Llewellyn wrote:Am I being exceedingly daft here?

I assume you are not :)

But - do you mean your "monitor" knob is at the highest value and still you don't hear well enough?

It's a bit confusing at start with the various gain and volume stage, so just in case: in all these devices you have the level of the input signal (controlled by the volume on your guitar), then the gain stage in the preamp/instrument input (sometimes with DIs there's just a fixed gain, sometimes you can control, don't know what the little Focusrite does).

Then with a DAW often you have a software gain on the channel (but at least in cakewalk it's disabled during recording, as it's used only to change the gain level post-recording) and you will have a channel fader - which control the amount of signal that is sent to the master bus.

As the others say, you data is recorded independently from that ("before the fader"), because the fader simply regulates the amount of recorded signal that goes to the master bus.

Then you have the master bus fader on the DAW, which also provides software increase or decrease of volume.

Then the signal is sent to the interface D/A and to the mains out (plus headphones out and any other outs that the interface may have, and often as defined by the interface routing software, which is completely independent from the DAW).

Most often there's a physical "volume" knob on the interface that regulates the volume of this analog signal - i.e. the volume you hear in speakers or headphones. That would be the "monitor" knob on the 2i2.

So you have plenty of ways to change the playback volume without affecting the recording level - which is basically only controlled by your guitar volume knob and the gain knob on the instrument input.

Without DAW:

source (e.g. browser with netflix movie and software volume control) ---> main outs (controlled by volume knob)

With DAW:

source (e.g. guitar with its own volume) -> gain knob on interface -> (recorded data) -> recording channel fader -> main bus fader -> main outs (controlled by volume knob)
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