recording a gig into Live

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
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kebabman
Posts: 43
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2007 6:29 am

recording a gig into Live

Post by kebabman » Wed Aug 14, 2019 11:01 am

Hi there

Apologies if this has been covered elsewhere.

I play electric guitar, trigger a few samples with a foot controller and have a drummer. We record our jams into Live 9 via a MOTU interface which has several (8?) ins and outs.

We usually have 5 mics on the drum kit and a mic on my guitar amp and another on my keyboard/samples amp. We have a template set up in Live 9 with eq and compressor settings for each of these mics and it's all sounding great.

We went to a hall yesterday to have a practise in a different environment. I also connected my 100w PA to the output on the motu so we could see what we sounded like at loud volume.

As it stands, the sound coming out of the PA is going to be using the same settings we have set up in Live for each channels eq and compressor. I'm guessing that the settings that are needed for the PA would have to be totally different from those when recording into Live as you need to think about the sound of the room - reverb etc...

My question is...

Is it possible to set up different settings within Live: one for a recording and the other for the PA feed? Would this be done using groups and routing in Live or using the multiple outs of the motu?

Would you need a second mac running Live: one mac for recording , the other for processing the PA sound?

Sorry but I'm very new to this whole gigging whilst simultaneously recording your performance.

Many thanks
If I'm not there I'll cut my hair...

fishmonkey
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Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2007 4:50 am

Re: recording a gig into Live

Post by fishmonkey » Wed Aug 14, 2019 10:53 pm

you can definitely set up routings to do everything on one machine.

however, i recommend using a second computer for recording, for two main reasons. firstly, separating things makes the whole setup more robust. you have one computer doing the live processing, and once it's set up and good to go, you leave it alone. secondly, whenever relying on computers for live performance, it's a really good idea to have a backup machine that you can quickly switch to if your main machine bites the dust. in this case your recording computer can also be your backup machine.
badbrainz wrote: I'm a drummer, so I'm already at an intellectual disadvantage here

kebabman
Posts: 43
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2007 6:29 am

Re: recording a gig into Live

Post by kebabman » Thu Aug 15, 2019 9:40 am

Thanks for the reply.

Yes this certainly seems logical: one MacBook for recording the gig and another for setting up the mix settings that will go to the PA. The MOTU interface has several ins and outs so I'm assuming this can be done. Is it almost like you're using 2 soundcards within one?

To add to this, as well as my electric guitar, I also trigger samples in Live 9 using a Boss GT- 10 foot controller. I'm hoping I don't need a third MacBook for this! Would I use the laptop that is also handling the PA settings for this or the other one which is doing the recording?

Many thanks
If I'm not there I'll cut my hair...

TLW
Posts: 271
Joined: Thu Aug 23, 2018 2:37 am

Re: recording a gig into Live

Post by TLW » Thu Aug 15, 2019 3:05 pm

Micing a drum kit into a 100W PA is probably unnecessary - the drummer, assuming they use an acoustic kit, is likely to be louder than the PA quite a lot of the time. The same may apply to backline amps as well - a 100W amp is only about twice as loud as a 10W amp assuming they have speakers with similar sensitivity. It’s also too easy to drive small PA amps into overdrive if they’re not loud enough clean.

If the gigs will use a more powerful PA one thing to do is put a couple of eqs as the last thing on the master track. One to do overall shaping based on the room acoustics followed an eq capable of narrow band cutting to handle frequencies that want to trigger feedback - or put a 1/3 octave band parametric eq between the computer/mixer outs and PA in and use that to kill feedback. If you’re doing the sound engineering yourselves on a “set it up and let it run” basis an automatic feedback killer can also be very useful.

Assuming the computer is up to the job Live should be capable of recording 8 tracks while playing back the tracks you are using for fx as well. I’d use 8 dedicated tracks to do the recording, set monitoring to “off” and put no processing on the recording tracks to save cpu - you can always add processing after recording. Do a few rehearsals where you set things up like this to check everything will work OK.
Live 10.1 Suite, M4L, 2014/15 MacBook Pro 15.3” Retina i7, OS Mojave 10.14.5. RME UFX, assorted synths, guitars and stuff.

kebabman
Posts: 43
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2007 6:29 am

Re: recording a gig into Live

Post by kebabman » Thu Aug 15, 2019 8:48 pm

Thanks for this - it's all very interesting.

I did notice that my Fender vibro champ 15w (?) which I had as my back line was starting to sound bad when I got past 8! I wasn't really expecting this - I assumed you could play it 10 for a while but I guess a valve could blow if you keep driving it!

Another thing we may do is try and work out how to do the processing for the PA mix within the motu so we're not overloading the cpu on the mac.

You raise a very important point about adding the processing to the recording afterwards to save on cpu. This indeed doesn't need to happen at the recording stage.

Many thanks
If I'm not there I'll cut my hair...

TLW
Posts: 271
Joined: Thu Aug 23, 2018 2:37 am

Re: recording a gig into Live

Post by TLW » Thu Aug 15, 2019 9:44 pm

Most of the many amps that have been called Fender Champ over the years are around 5 watts, but there are exceptions.

Valve life does get shortened by extended periods at high volume, but I’ve played valve amps for around 40 years and never had a valve just die on me. They usually gradually lose power, sound odd or become microphonic when they’re getting to need replacing. It’s always worth having a spare set just in case they’re needed. I’ve been caught out by valves slowly going “bad” so nowadays I put a spare set into an amp around every six months and if it makes a big improvement in sound and feel I leave them in and get another set as spares.

Back on topic, I’ve done synth/electronica gigs using a laptop acting as mixer, fx, plugin host and looper running Live without a problem. So long as the computer’s stable and can cope with the load you should be OK. Having a USB drive with a complete disk image on it in case things go wrong and you need to do a rapid install or use a borrowed laptop can be useful. This is probably easier with Macs than Windows because there’s fewer hardware differences and less computer tuning to worry about, and it’s easy to download a fresh OS if you need to.
Live 10.1 Suite, M4L, 2014/15 MacBook Pro 15.3” Retina i7, OS Mojave 10.14.5. RME UFX, assorted synths, guitars and stuff.

jonljacobi
Posts: 78
Joined: Sat Dec 30, 2017 3:36 am

Re: recording a gig into Live

Post by jonljacobi » Sat Aug 17, 2019 3:39 pm

You won’t blow the tube, that’s just the way tubes work. As they heat up, they start to sound different. Saggy is the way it’s usually described. There are sag settings on many amp sims.

TLW
Posts: 271
Joined: Thu Aug 23, 2018 2:37 am

Re: recording a gig into Live

Post by TLW » Sun Aug 18, 2019 6:35 pm

Valve amp sagging is to do with the rectifier not providing enough voltage increase as the demand from the valves which do the work increases. This is mostly caused by valve rectifiers - solid state rectifiers as fitted to almost all amps since the late 60s don’t do this unless they’re very inadequate for the design.
Live 10.1 Suite, M4L, 2014/15 MacBook Pro 15.3” Retina i7, OS Mojave 10.14.5. RME UFX, assorted synths, guitars and stuff.

kebabman
Posts: 43
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2007 6:29 am

Re: recording a gig into Live

Post by kebabman » Sun Aug 25, 2019 2:08 pm

Apologies for the delay in replying - only just seen this.

Thank you very much for the info on valves - sounds like you get a bit of warning.

Thanks for the info on CPU power and multi-tasking with Live. All much appreciated.
If I'm not there I'll cut my hair...

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