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How the best way to connect

soren84dk

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Hi All

I really hope you can help me with my starting adventure into music :).
I have just bought a M-Audio Hammer 88 pro keyboard / Piano.
To learn how to play the Piano, then I connect it with USB port to my computer and then I use the playground session app (learning program). When I play the piano the software play sound and recognize/identify what I am playing and give me a score in the end.
I would also like to buy a audio interface Audient iD14 MKII because I would also like to buy a condensator microphone more precise a Rode NT1-A.

Ok so my qustion is:
Are there an advantage / benifit to have my keyboard / piano connected through the audio interface? (better sound, better integration with microphone, better/faster signal or something else).
Or is this not possible when I am using the Piano with the software.
And if it is possible to have everything connected to the audio interface, How do I connect the Piano to the audio interface.

Just a sitenote, then my christmas gift will be a MacBook Pro 14" the new model and that is the main computer I will use to do music and connect Piano and Microphone to....NO I have not got my gift yet :-(, I need to wait until Christmas evening/morning :).

Hope this is not a to stupid qustion.

Best regard
Soren Denmark
 

AnalogSteph

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I really hope you can help me with my starting adventure into music :).
I have just bought a M-Audio Hammer 88 pro keyboard / Piano.
To learn how to play the Piano, then I connect it with USB port to my computer and then I use the playground session app (learning program). When I play the piano the software play sound and recognize/identify what I am playing and give me a score in the end.
Sounds like MIDI via USB... yup, it's a MIDI controller.

I would also like to buy a audio interface Audient iD14 MKII because I would also like to buy a condensator microphone more precise a Rode NT1-A.
Not the biggest fan of the NT1-A's sound, the treble in particular... yes I know it's relatively inexpensive and very low noise, but I would prefer the NT1, NT1000, even the NT2-A sounds better. (The -A stands for "announcer", and it does have some of that "radio sound" with boosted low and high end.) As does the trusty AT2035, even if it's marginally less quiet. (I quite like this model, which also sports a useful 80 Hz high-cut and 10 dB pad for very loud sources.) Yes, one could in principle EQ the NT1-A flat but it's additional hassle. For singing, a more treble-happy mic like a Lewitt LCT 440 PURE may be preferable, whereas a flatter one like the NT1 is better on spoken word but wouldn't be cutting through the mix as well without some EQ.

Also, the iD14 MkII is a fairly nice interface, but if you just want to make good use of a single condenser mic and little more, you don't need anything remotely as fancy. An Arturia Minifuse 1 or a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 gen3 would be just fine for that (*) while leaving a good bit more budget for the mic. Maybe an iD4 MkII if you want a very good line and headphone out as well.

*) Input dynamic range for these is approaching 110 dB(A), plenty for a vocal mic.
Are there an advantage / benifit to have my keyboard / piano connected through the audio interface? (better sound, better integration with microphone, better/faster signal or something else).
I can't think of any. Besides, you'd need an interface with either built-in MIDI input or a USB hub (the former only being common in a slightly higher price range and the latter being a bit exotic in general).
 

DVDdoug

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Are there an advantage / benifit to have my keyboard / piano connected through the audio interface? (better sound, better integration with microphone, better/faster signal or something else).
The virtual instruments (software in the computer) will sound different from what's built-into the piano. And there is an "unlimited" number of available virtual instruments. Also, MIDI editing is more flexible than audio editing. i.e. You can change notes & timing more easily than editing audio and you can change the instrument after recording.

If you're not editing it might be easier to record audio but you need MIDI if you want to create a printed score.

When playing live or monitoring through the computer there is always some latency (delay). (Latnecy is related to the buffers which are required with a multitasking operating system.) The delay can usually reduced to the point where it's unnoticeable but sometimes it's a pain "tweaking" your computer. That's true with audio or MIDI and I'm not sure if one is generally better or worse than the other. For recording, it's not problem... It's just a problem if you are trying to perform with a delay.

And if it is possible to have everything connected to the audio interface, How do I connect the Piano to the audio interface.[/quote]I don't know about your hardware but the piano should have an analog output for connecting an amplifier, or for recording.

And the interface should have an "instrument" input. Inputs that switch between mic & instrument or between mic & line* are common. Many interfaces have a combination-connector that accepts an XLR microphone connection or a 1/4-inch phone plug, and sometimes they automatically switch for whatever is connected.



* The analog output of a keyboard is a line-output which is similar to a guitar, except that a guitar has a higher impedance and maybe slightly-lower output. A high impedance "instrument" input will work with either one. A headphone-output is also compatible with a line-input.
 

JayGilb

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Your keyboard is a pure midi controller and has no builtin sounds or any analog output. The interface you are looking to purchase does not have a standard 5 pin midi connector and is unable to connect directly to the keyboard.
I would suggest you look for a different audio interface that supports a standard 5 pin midi connection and use that along with a microphone to record both keyboard and vocals via the audio interface.

If you already have purchased the Rode NT1-A then I suggest that you use it until you become more familiar with how your keyboard and audio interface. If you do not like the sound of the NT1-A, then a better vocal microphone choice would be, as AnalogSteph suggests, a Rode NT2-A.
It is a multi-pattern condenser microphone with very low self noise and would be a good choice for vocals and instruments in the future.
 
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