USB audio latency problems?
February 27, 2008 12:28 PM Subscribe
How big a problem is USB microphone latency for multitrack musical recording? i.e. How difficult will it be to do tight vocal overdubs with a straight-to-USB mic? What about with a mic->XLR->USB interface->Mac setup?
posted by waxbanks to Media & Arts (8 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I'm home-studio shopping, starting with a mic; I like the sound (and especially the price!) of the Samson C01U/C01, the former a USB mic, the latter a standard XLR-out mic. I'm going to do vocal/acoustic overdubs in Garageband/Logic on my Mac, and some MIDI nonsense. I gather that I won't be able to directly monitor my vocal performances without a USB/FireWire interface, as USB mic->Garageband->headphones monitoring will result in a maddening latency/echo effect. With a USB/FireWire interface I'll be able to monitor my own performance ('sidetone') before it's sent to the Mac, so that's OK.
So what I'm seeking is reassurance that, all else being equal, I'll be able to synchronize performance through USB audio devices (mics interfaces) as easily as through a FireWire interface. What I'm afraid of is that I'll make a recording, overdub a track, and then have to tweak the overdubbed track some number of milliseconds because the USB cable slowed my musicthaumaturgy down.
Bonus question: are the wicked-cheap Behringer mixers any good?
Side note: as happened with the Internet around 1993-95, the home studio market and discursive realm seems to be flooding with idiots uninterested in learning the technical ins-n-outs required to do a task up right. I hope/think I'm not that; I'd like to become proficient in home recording and audio-tweaking, given time and sufficient income. But I'm starting at rock bottom here, and still getting a sense of how serious these technical requirements of this pastime are, so please bear with me.