Question about making a capture of a non-distortion device

I have an EQ/preamp pedal of sorts that I’d like to capture. This device has input monitoring so I can tell how hot the signal going in is. I made a capture such that when I was playing kind of normally it was ok, but I could see in the capture process a lot of what was feeding into the device was an extremely hot signal. The result of the capture balances pretty well when you do the device capture vs. original comparison, but I’m noticing some extra hiss/white noise on the high end of the sound when I’m actually using the thing, and this is exacerbated by some other effects.

Should I set the levels of everything so that the QC never red-lines the device I’m capturing? This is a device that isn’t meant to distort.

(If you really must know, the device I’m capturing is a setting on a TC Helicon Voicelive product)

You can’t set the signal level. You can use another preamp in between to lower it though. I’d try adjusting the return level a bit first - that affects the capture. Also don’t be afraid to crank down the gain on the resulting block and increase the out level - it might just be too hot by default.

I can set the input gain on the device I’m capturing though. I would just have to lower it a lot more than I typically do for the devices I usually plug into it.

worth a try at least! I usually get the best results by doing a few iterations of things

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My best pedal captures have been when I did this:

  1. Pedal into input bypassed
  2. Setup an amp/cab and get it sounding good.
  3. Turn the pedal on and get it sounding good.
  4. Unhook it and then hook everything up the way you would normally capture a pedal.

I’ve tried a million different ways. This has always been foolproof. And consistent.

Just make sure you don’t accidentally turn any knobs when you unhook and re-hookup the pedal.

Try setting the capture out to 0dB, no boost, no cut. This should drive the pedal similar to how your guitar dives it. If your guitar pushes the pedal into the red, then that’s probably part of what you want to capture.

Yeah, I definitely found out just now that the “Auto Set” levels in the capture settings do weird things.

I followed @jtexas suggestion to chain the devices first. Got it set to basically unity volume, so that it was the same level as my sound direct into my amp. Since this device I’m trying to capture is color, not gain related, it should end up sounding similar in overall level.

When I got to the capture settings and did auto set it started to boost the return level a really high amount and got way louder than my initial settings.

So @jamsden I did what you suggested (before reading it, actually) and just set both knobs on the QC capture screen to 0, as that sounded about right.

Worked way better. Still a bit more hiss than the original unit, but it’s really close.

I should have been more in-depth.

For best results, I’ve found that following my steps listed above and setting instrument level 0 and the capture level to 0, works the best.

Don’t use the auto set function.