DI Box

Discussion in 'TASCAM DM-3200 & DM-4800' started by Peter Batah, Mar 8, 2021.

  1. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    Hello. I am looking at purchasing a DI box. The Radial Engineering J48 comes highly recommended. It is powered by 48V phantom, no batteries required.

    Will this function properly with my DM-4800. Thank you. Peter
  2. skier

    skier Well-Known Member

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    I don't know the J-48, but I have had the Radial Pro DI Passive Direct Box for years, use it with my DM-4800 and have been extremely happy with it for many years.

    Of course, one warning I feel obliged to give you is that this company is based in Canada, and you know how those Canadians are - ya just can't trust em. At least they're in BC - the worst ones are in Montreal... just sayin... :p
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  3. Arjan P

    Arjan P Veteran

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    @Peter Batah Radial is great quality! No noise, sturdy, well laid-out and designed. Almost all my DIs are Radial - most of them in the StageBug series. You don't mention what you want to use the DI box for, but they have a whole range, also specific ones, for piezo acoustic guitars for instance.
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  4. BazzBass

    BazzBass Active Member

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    I have two J48s and the passive one. Great DIs. put it between a bass and your machine and I promise you glorious bass :)
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  5. J L Bowie

    J L Bowie Member

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    Radial JDI Passive here for years. Came highly recommended and I pass that recommendation on. Really great piece of kit.
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  6. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    Based in Canada you say? Who knew. I feel even more confident now. BCB (Buy Canadian Baby)
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  7. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    Thank you all for the replies. I see that many of you are using the "Passive" variant. Why is that? I ran my current needs (guitar / bass to DM) and a nice gentleman by the name of Austin suggested that I select the J48 (an Active DI). Was that the wrong choice?
  8. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    What I mentioned to the folks at Radial is that I want (for the time being) is to go straight in to the DM from my Telecaster or bass guitar
  9. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    Trust me. I'm with you when it comes to the Montreal ilk. Not the friendliest bunch I'm afraid. Steve's isn't what it used to be that's for sure.
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  10. skier

    skier Well-Known Member

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    As a fellow Canuck (well from the same motherland), I cannot help but tease you. More seriously and on topic, I've had my Radial box for over 10 years. And as others have stated, it's built like a tank. I've tripped over it several times and it doesn't even have a scratch. I actually don't use it as a DI box - I have DI inputs on one of my pre-amps and I ALWAYS run any guitar and bass into the DIs to record them cleanly. So, I actually use the Radial box primarily for re-amping.

    I mentioned in a prior post about being able to use Melodyne for such unbelievable control as changing a major chord to a minor or to a 7th, etc. Such control cannot be performed to a track with distortion - it MUST be clean; that's why I record every instrument cleanly to its own track. I sometimes add a slight bit of dirt to a bass track if it doesn't stand out enough, but not usually. However, I do like a bit of crunch on my lead guitar tracks, especially because most of my songs are blues.

    So, the sound of the guitar goes into the DM and to the DAW cleanly onto a track, and it also comes out of the DM to the Radial box and into a guitar amp with just a little crunch added. Like most singers wanting some reverb on their voice, I feel more inspired and play lead guitar better when I hear that little bit of crunch on it from the amp. When listening to the song on playback, I'll decide if any changes need be made, such as adjusting an errant note or chord. If so, I fix it on the clean track, but then record enable the "crunch" lead guitar track and re-amp the clean track through the amp with crunch and record that on its own track. The result is that I can make any number of changes I want to the clean track and process it through re-amping to get the sound I want without having to re-play the part. Only if I feel the part itself doesn't cut it will I again play it and re-cord it fresh.

    I think this explanation makes it sound more complicated and laborious than it truly is. Please let me know if I wasn't adequately clear and I'll try to better explain.
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  11. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    @skier Obviously, it seems that a DI can be multi-purposed. Will have to look over your different workflows again. As I asked in my last post. Did I do the right thing by purchasing the Active vs Passive. TY
  12. skier

    skier Well-Known Member

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    @Peter Batah, I think going active is fine. We're talking about the products of a great company! I know that many purists, especially in the stereophile community, always prefer passive systems (a "wire with gain" is an oft and fondly used description) over active systems. It's kind of like those that always prefer tube circuits over solid state, when if fact, there's good and bad in both. HOWEVER, a well designed analog system, especially using op-amps, but also discrete components or ICs, and also including well designed digital circuits with good A/D converters, will give you excellent sonic quality with much more control than you'd ever get with a passive system. There is no bad aspect with the concept of going active components, only bad designs. Radial has excellent designs.

    I've experienced bad active AND bad passive designs - it's all about the quality of the design engineering and manufacturing - if those two are good, so it the product. If one or both are bad, well, you know where I'm going with this conclusion.
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  13. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    @skier Another question if I may (what else is new?) Is it possible that Austin from Radial recommended the active DI because of the fact that I had mentioned wanting to use one with the DM. And, then knowing that the DM provided phantom power. What happens if at some point the DM is no longer in my chain (no more phantom power source.) Does that render the DI useless. Well, not useless. But I think that you get the gist. If so, I will gladly have it replaced with a passive design if that is preferable.
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  14. skier

    skier Well-Known Member

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    ANOTHER QUESTION???? Sure.

    Keep the unit you have. If you use microphones that don't require phantom power, such as dynamic or ribbon mics, it's not an issue. If you use a capacitance mic, they usually need phantom power unless powered by internal batteries. I prefer to use phantom power rather than the batteries because most mics needing such power will distort when the voltage gets too low, such as when the batteries run down. Every mic which can use internal batteries that I've seen can also work on phantom power when it's available.

    So, if you're going to use any mic which requires phantom power, then it'll have to come from the mixer or a mic pre-amp, so you'll already have it for the J48 or the mic won't work anyway selling the DM won't affect that because the mic would need power from some other source to work. If you're using a mic which doesn't need power, then it isn't an issue. So I'd definitely keep the J48.
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  15. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    @skier Thanks again for the great info. I was really looking for something that I could use with my Telecaster and a bass that I haven't acquired yet. Not so much a mic issue at the moment. Hence, the "what-if" scenario. I a no longer had the DM and lost access to phantom power would that render the DI useless in so far as the guitar / bass situation I described above. Perhaps, I am not explaining myself properly. Wouldn't be the first time ;)

    Note; For the time being I am using the Lauten Audio LA-320 tube mic which ships with its own power source. And of course does not require phantom power

    https://www.lautenaudio.com/la-320
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  16. skier

    skier Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, I meant to include some additional info in the answer to your question, but forgot as I jumped to answer a call.

    That part is whether or not you can continue to use the J48 if you no longer have the DM to power it. The answer is yes. The J48 will also work off of a 9 volt battery. Or you can use any other mixer that provides phantom power, or you could just buy a phantom power supply. Depending what you want to spend, you can get them from around $20 to well over $100. Here's an example from some of Amazon's offerings:

    https://www.amazon.com/Microphone-Phantom-Power-Supplies/b?ie=UTF8&node=11974571

    If I've still dropped the ball (always possible), hit me again.
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  17. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    @skier Apparently not. And I quote:


    The J48 only has the ability to be powered by 48V phantom power and cannot be powered by a 9V battery.



    Kindest regards,



    Austin
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  18. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    By the way J. No need to stop what you're doing just to cater to my inquiries. I appreciate it very much but am certain that you do have a life outside of this Forum
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  19. skier

    skier Well-Known Member

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  20. Peter Batah

    Peter Batah Well-Known Member

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    Straight from the horses mouth. They have a few in BC I suppose
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