Hi, i am working on a MaxMSP patch to sample and filter live piano playing real time. All i have at the moment is the MacBook Pros built in sound card. I assume this is not good enough. Could anyone suggest a reasonably priced sound card that I sound purchase.
P.s Could anyone suggest some decent mics too, i could do with ones that you can clip onto string and woodwind instruments…
Try a firewire or USB breakout audio interface(it’s better to help protect from your computer’s fan and hard-drive noise, anyways).
I’d recommend any MOTU or Focusrite device(i use MOTU personally but there are better ones with better preamps like the Focusrite Saffire, you’ll have to research…).
Clip-on mics might not always be the best buy, you have to pay more for more portable/smaller options in order to get the same fidelity inherent in regular mics. Either way, I’d go for a condenser of some type rather than a dynamic mic. (Hopefully with this bump, others will advise on specific mics)
*Never fear, Noob4Life was never here!*
I’ve personally found MOTU very reliable. Right now I own a Presonus. The feature set for routing and onboard mixing is far better than the equivalent Focusrite, and the mic pres are also good (I haven’t done a direct A/B but I’ve been pretty impressed by the Presonus).
RME and MOTU are often highly regarded for driver stability. Presonus and Focusrite are newer to the interface market, and it definitely has shown earlier on in the driver development. However, I think the situation is much better now. There are also many other manufacturers that might offer more features for the same price, or a lower pricepoint product.
For clip on mics DPA are pretty great, but that may well not be suitable for your price range. It’d probably be a good idea to give an indication of what ‘reasonably priced’ means to you, as I’d guess that interpretations here may vary wildly.
Also, what are your ideal requirements – stereo in / stereo out, or more? The more info you give the better people can advise you.
We use MOTU (ultralite) and RME (400&800) here without any problem.
We also use a Mackie Onyx i mix desk as soundcard, but I had some problems yesterday, probably related to their driver…
About microphones, if you want to do real time processing of live intruments, clip-on mics is the way to go. We are very happy with DPA, both the 4060 (very small, omni) and the 4099 (supercardio) lines. They’re not cheap, but money spent in good microphones is never lost.