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Old June 6th, 2009, 01:37 PM   #1
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"Tape out" Rec out" sound board levels

Hi all

Most all sound boards and PA systems have a "tape out" or "rec out" (RCA)

How is this level controlled? Is it simply what ever levels and mix are going to the main outputs?

Thanks
Ben
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Old June 6th, 2009, 01:44 PM   #2
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Ben,

Yes, it's typically the same mix as the "Main Out" and controlled by the main stereo faders. Some boards have a separate "Tape Out" pot. It's also usually -10db consumer line level. But I would check the specific board you are looking at to be sure.

Have fun!

Rob
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Old June 6th, 2009, 01:46 PM   #3
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It is generally whatever the mix is that is coming out of the main PA. This means it might sounds great coming out of the speakers but could sound terrible on the recording because it's being mixed for the room, not for the record out.

For absolute best results you would need to have a separate mix to your taste either with an auxilary feed if the board has it or take and output of each channel into your own mixer and either mix live or multitrack for later mixing.

It can also depend on where and what you are recording. If it's speeches and such the record out will probably work find. I'm normally satisfied with this as an easy method to get decent audio for most events like weddings, pageants, and such I film.

For live music you may be sorely disappointed. Board feeds often sound stale and dull. Often times some instrument(s) may be lower or higher in the house mix because they need to be and that will be reflected in the record out. For instance, drums in a small space don't need to be mixed heavily into the PA feed because they carry well by themselves. So when you listen to a straight 2 channel recording of the performance the drums may be almost non-existent. People who tape live music often will use a good set of microphones to mix with the board feed either live or in post to fill in the gaps and make it sound more appealing.
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Old June 8th, 2009, 01:11 AM   #4
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Thanks Guys!

Ben
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Old June 9th, 2009, 10:21 AM   #5
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The RCA Tape Outs can often be much hotter than -10db depending on the model of mixer. So it's good if you are hooking them to an input that's tolerant of higher levels without distorting or can be adjusted up if that particular board or mix is low.
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