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Music, Audio, and Podcasting Do you use your Mac to create music? This is the place for discussions on creating and editing music on the Mac!

HELP!Any professional keyboardist using Mac on tour?


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urbanmacgirl

 
Member Since: Feb 12, 2010
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OK, I'm a touring keyboardist.
I play sounds trough logic pro using my midi keyboard.
Now, I need to hook up the computer to my keyboard amp so everybody can hear what I'm playing..
I've been trying so many different ways..
All the cables failed me.. They make scratchy noise...

Here's what I've done...
3.5mm male from headphone jack -> 3.5mm-1/4"adapter -> 1/4" to keyboard amp...(the connection is never good, often make scratchy noise..)

I heard to make the best quality from Mac to an amp is to use 3.5mm to ACR cables.. But my keyboard amp does not take ACR so what should I do here?
I'm using a Roland KC-100!

Thanks in advance for helping me out guys!!
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JUKE179r

 
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The best way to do this is to use a mixer... if you have one
Run your Mac Output cable to Mixer Ins and run the mixer out cables to your amp.
This is the same way I use my MBP for DJing.

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urbanmacgirl

 
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Hi, thanks so much for the quick reply!
but Mac output cable? What cable is that? Which cable did you use to connect to your mixer? Would you gimme your set up? cable brand, mixer model...)
you mean the output cable from the mbp's headphone jack?

Thanks again
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JUKE179r

 
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My bad urbanmacgirl... I had to rethink this since I was at work when I posted my other comment. Disregard what I had posted before. I was thinking of a DJ set up but this option would be better for you since using Logic as a DAW:
Just some brief info first about your noise... the environment inside a computer can be very noisy and most computer audio users think it is better to get all analog operations out of the computer even though its all digital. In saying that, the better option for you would be to get a USB or FireWire (FW) audio interface (AI).
The Best Audio Interfaces for your Home Studio by TweakHeadz Lab
This will allow you to send the MBP's digital signal via USB or FW to the AI's digital-to-analog convertor (DAC) and convert it to analog for your speakers so no more scratchy noises.




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Cdnalsi

 
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Hey there!

Are you sure the "strachy" noises are from the cables? It could be because you're not using an interface and Core Audio can't keep up with what you're playing. Also, how are you dealing with the latency?

The easiest way to hook up your setup is to buy the smallest MIDI interface you can find. When I'm on the go, I use this one:



You hook it up to your mac via USB, you hook up the MIDI cables from your controller to it, and Logic will spot it and run all the sound it generates (triggered by your MIDI controller) through it. From there, as you can see, you can hook up some in-ears for your monitors (if you wish) and also S/Pdif or RCA outputs to your amp or DI or whatever. There's also virtually no latency (it's 3ms but you can't really feel it while playing. I found 10ms to be unbearable when playing but 3ms is fine).

As far as cables go, the MIDI cable is irrelevant (they're all good), the USB cable the same, and for jacks I recommend Monster cables.

Works like a charm and they're really cheap:
m-audio audiophile usb - Google Product Search

Cheers!


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FinerWine

 
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If you have some serious cash to throw down on this endeavor, I'd suggest looking into an interface running firewire. If you have the cash to eliminate any lag, why not?
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BenB

 
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The BEST device on the market to do this is the Apogee Duet. Pre-amps rock, A/D filters are top quality, s/n ratio can't be beat, fully professional gear, super portable, super easy to work with, firewire. It's what we use, I'd never use/trust anything else.

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Cdnalsi

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BenB View Post
The BEST device on the market to do this is the Apogee Duet. Pre-amps rock, A/D filters are top quality, s/n ratio can't be beat, fully professional gear, super portable, super easy to work with, firewire. It's what we use, I'd never use/trust anything else.
Problem with the Apogee is that it doesn't have MIDI in/out which is what the OP requires.


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jeffory

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cdnalsi View Post
Problem with the Apogee is that it doesn't have MIDI in/out which is what the OP requires.
op is playing sounds through logic with midi keyboard it mentions from the initial post.

have you tried using headphones to see if they crackle, too? if not, it could be your cord to the amp. worse even, could be a bad jack in the mac. hopefully under warrantee still.

good luck
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Chud

 
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+1 to what everyone has said about using a firewire interface. The internal audio converters are ok, but you run into issues with all the processing required internally (as well as the potential for lower quality sound and latency issues). When you use an external converter, the majority of audio processing is done by the unit itself freeing up your laptop to simply process the midi and run logic. Not to mention you would be hard pressed to buy a firewire unit that doesn't have better converters than what is inside the Mac (not to knock the Mac).

I use a Motu Ultralite Mk3 which will run off laptop power with firewire, but also sports USB 2.0 if I'm ever short of FW inputs. Compact and rock solid, with great sounding converters and plenty of ins and outs for future expansion. Even has built in DSP driven mixing if you don't want to bring a mixer along. Best bang for the buck IMHO.
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