Live Event Multitrack Audio Capture

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Ron Fredericks writes:

LectureMaker’s video studio captures audio with highest quality. Each audio source is recorded on separate tracks because audio is so important to a high quality video or podcast. I hope this overview helps my clients and prospects see just how serious I am in recording the very best audio for my live event video capture projects as well as my in-studio projects.

For hardware, I designed my audio capture platform around a PreSonus StudioLive 16.4.2 analog plus digital 16-track recording system that includes mic pre-amps, dynamic audio correction, and both analog and digital mixing. For software, I use Adobe Audition 3 (AA3) for multitrack capture, recording, and final post production mixes.

Here is a photo of LectureMaker’s studio setup:

Figure 1 – LectureMaker’s audio system managed by PreSonus StudioLive system

Setting up the hardware and software is not difficult once you see a sample of how its done. Here is an overview of what the setup looks like with respect to Adobe Audition 3’s Multitrack mode:

Figure 2 – Sample Multitrack Session input (from StudioLive) and Master Mixer output (back to StudioLive)

Step by Step Setup

I use AA3 and PreSonus StudioLive 16.4.2 with no problems both in Multitrack mode and in Edit (single track/stereo) mode – as well as with digital firewire and analog i/o drivers. The key to success is to decide how you want to record and playback:

Option 1) Via digital/Firewire for Edit ( mono/stereo track) or Multitrack recording/playback –

a. Launch PreSonus Universal Control utility on your PC to define audio in/out via StudioLive Firewire

b. Connect as many microphones/instruments/iPods etc… into StudioLive channels 3 to 16 (for example) so you can record, while also assigning sub1 for output

c. For Edit mode in AA3 using Edit -> Audio Hardware -> your FireWire for input, and for output; or

For Multitrack mode in AA3 Select Mono -> StudioLive Channel 3 for Track 1, Channel 4 for Track 2, etc… (for this hypothetical channel setup example)

d. For Edit mode click record on AA3 and test, if you want to include dynamics on StudioLive don’t forget to “Dig Out” on each audio channel mentioned in b. above; or

For Multitrack mode, arm each channel you want to record (you may need to do this before step c above to switch from analog to Firewire driver), then click record button when ready;

e. for playback from AA3 through StudioLive, check AA3 master mixer output select Firewire channel 1 and 2 for output (in this stereo example or just channel 1 for mono), on StudioLive make sure “Firewire” button is lit just below the trim knob, and adjust channel 1 and 2 trim and dynamics as desired.

Option 2) Via analog for Edit without use of Firewire ( mono/stereo track) recording/playback –

a. Connect PC microphone jack into sub1 (for example) output so you can send audio to your PC;

b. Connect as many microphones/instruments/iPods etc… into StudioLive channels 3 to 16 (for example) so you can record, while also assigning sub1 for output;

c. Connect PC speaker/headphone jack to channel 1 and 2 Line input on PreSonus StudioLive (for stereo example, just channel 1 in this hypothetical example for mono);

d. In AA3 using Edit -> Audio Hardware -> select your analog microphone for input, and your speaker/headphone for output;

d. Click record on AA3 and test your setup, if you want to include dynamics from StudioLive into your AS3 recording, don’t forget to select “Dig Out” on each StudioLive audio channel mentioned in b. above;

e. For playback from AA3 through StudioLive, check AA3 master mixer output to make sure speaker/headphone jack is selected, and make sure channels 1 and 2 are setup for reasonable volume and dynamics for playback via StudioLive (headphones in my case).

I hope this helps others who have these tools but are unable to figure out how to connect them together.

Are You Having Trouble Selecting Firewire Driver?

If you don’t see an option in your audio hardware setup to select Presonus Firewire options. Then, click on the control panel button (see figure below) to define them. Here is a screen shot of my configuration…


LectureMaker’s Video Studio

PreSonus StudioLive 16.4.2

Adobe Audition Audio Capture, Edit, and Music Creation Software

Adobe FAQ: Setup Audition 3 Audio Hardware Drivers

Author: Ron Fredericks

Ron's technology skill set includes open source software development, architecture design, quick prototyping, project/product management, operating system development, compiler development, debugger development, component reuse, network protocols, new media streaming, real-time performance, embedded systems, mobile apps, power engineering, and countless application development projects. Ron is also a business developer, video and animation artist, public speaker, eLearning platform developer, and independent researcher at LinkedIn Profile:

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