why different meter readings

why is it that my onyx mixer says it is giving out +7 down the firewire to cubase

but when in cubase the cubase in meter only reads - 13


Because they use different meter calibration / scales

It will depend on whether you have a number of things set.

Firewire send pre or post channel?
Also I think you would need to enable the solo (set to the correct setting) for a channel to get the corresponding channel level to show on the Onyx metering.

If in doubt trust the Cubase metering, as thinkingcap says, the metering could be calibrated to a different level, ie not the digital output dBFS

firewire out is just after gain pre everything els

pre fader solo on desk reads + 7

cubase in meter pre fader read - 13

so i would seem to need to turn all the cubase input gains up a little as i found the input slider does not effect recording lvl

or would it be better to record at lower lvl then just normalize the track up to full lvl ??


Leave the Cubase “In” faders at unity, there is no advantage to changing them!

You should be aiming for a Cubase input peak level of at most -6dBFS, leave headroom, use 24bit.

Do not normalise files unless there is a very good reason to do so.

Learn to mix at lower levels. (even masterbus peaking at -13dBFS)

I know, I know… I can hear the roar of the 32bit FP mix levels are irrelevant crowd, gathering :laughing:

Input levels are not irrelevant, and standardising your final mix level is good practice, and final (24bit?) level is important for further finalising.

ok so monitor desk lvls ie send +4/7 peaks
leave cubase settings
and work with whatever cubase records
thats kind of what i do i just never really noticed the difference in the 2 meter readings before


Yeah sort of, I don’t know where the digital send is taken from on the Mackie?

But with the cubase input faders at unity the Cubase input meters give the correct input level measured at the converter, in the digital scale.

mackie firewire send is right after the channel gain and pre everything els for each channel so all i do is use channel gain to make channel solo read 0 to +4 and then record

so to sum up , in cubase i need to keep my peaks below -6 to allow for head room and adjust this using the mackie gain rather than adjusting cubase input channel gain yes


I have an Oynxi and I use the Cubase meters as the guide to follow. On my mixer, too, what is unity on the Cubase mixer is typically +7, more like +10.

What I do know is that if the Mackie hits the red on it’s LED display it will distort. :astonished: Just be mindful of the red.

Sounds like a plan :stuck_out_tongue:

why do you say not to normalize , i thought that was a quick easy and safe way to raise lvl’s

what do you mean be “standardising” ??

Yes it is, but more importantly, getting the correct signal level into Cubase in the first place is what you should be aiming for. usually in context with any other recorded material!

Remember, normalising cannot increase detail.

Normalising all your files to a set level destroys the relationship between carefully recorded parts and makes mixing harder. IMO

The full quote is “standardising your final mix level” I’m talking about mixing to a level, usually set by keeping an eye on the overall RMS level. It has advantages when it comes to Mastering/Finalising. It’s also good discipline and shows a degree of ability/skill.

With a 32bit FP mix bus there is no real need to watch the overall level any more and this skill is maybe becoming redundant. Mix as you will and deal with it later by pulling the master fader down. No real harm is done that way. To me though it’s a matter of control, I’m a bit of a control freak in the studio! I would say it shows a degree of “control” over the DAW.

Having all your mixes ending up around the same “loudness” is a good thing. Try it, it’s not as easy as first appears.

Recently I’ve been experimenting with the SLM 128 metering plugin and producing mixes to -23LUFS, this is a bit lower that I used to mix to, but it’s a great tool for “standardising the final mix level” and Mastering Engineers will love you for it :stuck_out_tongue: Hey you get a whole 2 to 3 bits of clear headroom for later shenanigans :mrgreen:

The plugin can be downloaded here for free> http://www.steinberg.net/en/newsandevents/news/newsdetail/archive/2012/05/23/article/free-slm-128-plug-in-available-1970.html