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Author Topic: Tinybox vs Littlebox  (Read 7643 times)

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stevetoney

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Tinybox vs Littlebox
« on: May 13, 2012, 10:43:57 PM »
So far Im feeling kinda alone, but given what I`ve seen and heard from the tinybox, it sounds better than the littlebox especially with transformers.  I also don't really see the feature set on TB to be that much different than what was available on LB.  I`ve seen lots of people lamenting that LB is no longer available and seen a couple of LBs sell in the ys for new prices, but frankly I don't see the big deal since TB  is still available.  Just wondering if anyone else feels like I do.

Offline OOK

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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2012, 10:55:41 PM »
So far Im feeling kinda alone, but given what I`ve seen and heard from the tinybox, it sounds better than the littlebox especially with transformers.  I also don't really see the feature set on TB to be that much different than what was available on LB.  I`ve seen lots of people lamenting that LB is no longer available and seen a couple of LBs sell in the ys for new prices, but frankly I don't see the big deal since TB  is still available.  Just wondering if anyone else feels like I do.


I am one of the lamenters... While I think the TB v2 is the most logical progression and it probably sound as good or better than the LB.... the one thing I don't like about the TB is the inability to adjust levels per channel... even a balance control would be good..... just as long as you can even out the levels between the channels. unless your in the sweet spot levels will always be uneven... Which has me thinking just as I am typing this.... I wonder in Jon could make a inline balance control knob  I am talking on a line out cable between the out of the TB and input of XXX recorder...  That would do the trick...  simple easy and could be sold seperate as an accessory....  They are plenty of portable battery boxs, stealth preamps that could benefit from such a product.  Something completely passive....  hhhmmm I wonder...

OOK

edit... I too love the sound of each rendition of the LB and TB...While I don't own one I have heard many recording with these pre's and love them...  I am more pissed at myself for never taking the plunge
« Last Edit: May 13, 2012, 11:07:20 PM by OOK »
DPA/HEB 4060's > R09HR
MBHO648/KA100Lk/KA200/KA300/KA500 > SD702

stevetoney

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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #2 on: May 13, 2012, 10:57:42 PM »
Btw, the above comments are based on the 4 or 5 recordings I've heard of TBv2.0.  That isnt a knock on LB, which sound great, but a statement that I`m so impressed with the sound of TBv2.0!
« Last Edit: May 13, 2012, 10:59:37 PM by tonedeaf »

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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #3 on: May 13, 2012, 11:22:23 PM »
the one thing I don't like about the TB is the inability to adjust levels per channel...

out of curiosity, why not just fix it in post? I've only had a couple recordings that I went back and listened to that I thought I nailed the balance on the first try and they didn't occur when I used equipment that I could adjust each channel. I dunno, maybe you're doing better, but I figured as long as I'm within 6-8 db of it, I'm not going to fiddle with individual channels during the show. The noise hit by amping a channel later with 24bit and decent equipment isn't enough to make a difference IMHO.

The last time I used equipment where I changed each channel independently was summer of fall of 2008... I've always had the option to link the gain between them since then and have done so.
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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #4 on: May 14, 2012, 12:22:49 AM »
the one thing I don't like about the TB is the inability to adjust levels per channel...

out of curiosity, why not just fix it in post? I've only had a couple recordings that I went back and listened to that I thought I nailed the balance on the first try and they didn't occur when I used equipment that I could adjust each channel. I dunno, maybe you're doing better, but I figured as long as I'm within 6-8 db of it, I'm not going to fiddle with individual channels during the show. The noise hit by amping a channel later with 24bit and decent equipment isn't enough to make a difference IMHO.

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stevetoney

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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #5 on: May 14, 2012, 07:22:09 AM »
That's where i'm at on that subject too.  I respect that some like the control factor of two knobs but I see it as another opportunity to screw something up in the bottom of my bag if the gain knob on one channel gets bumed to zero or something similar.

stevetoney

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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2012, 09:58:13 AM »
. . and besides, your recorders already have those functions.

Thats one reason I expressed in my OP that I don't see much difference in the feature set of TB vs LB.  That said, with my current recorders one has independent channel gain control and the other doesn't.  Regardless, as page said, since I record with at least 6db of headroom, I tweek levels in post on 100% of my recordings so I could care less if there is a mismatch in my levels during the show (within reason) because its a no brainer for me that when I adjust my levels in post to set the level of one channel independent from the other in order to get them balanced on the master.

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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #7 on: May 14, 2012, 11:12:02 AM »
To be fair, the best reason I've heard for independant channel configuration is M/S recording. If you can safely bring up the low channel (mostly S, but it could flip depending on position setup), then when you drop that back in post production you would gain a form of noise reduction, but thats a special case. The ideal situation in this case is the ability to seamlessly lock and unlock the gain structure so you can make that adjustment, and then lock the gain values so when you make an adjustment later on it doesn't distort the image balance.
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stevetoney

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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #8 on: May 14, 2012, 11:45:30 AM »
To be fair, the best reason I've heard for independant channel configuration is M/S recording. If you can safely bring up the low channel (mostly S, but it could flip depending on position setup), then when you drop that back in post production you would gain a form of noise reduction, but thats a special case. The ideal situation in this case is the ability to seamlessly lock and unlock the gain structure so you can make that adjustment, and then lock the gain values so when you make an adjustment later on it doesn't distort the image balance.

Sigh...you just reminded me one of the many reasons why I loved owning a Sound Devices digital recorder.

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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #9 on: May 14, 2012, 12:01:15 PM »
To be fair, the best reason I've heard for independant channel configuration is M/S recording. If you can safely bring up the low channel (mostly S, but it could flip depending on position setup), then when you drop that back in post production you would gain a form of noise reduction, but thats a special case. The ideal situation in this case is the ability to seamlessly lock and unlock the gain structure so you can make that adjustment, and then lock the gain values so when you make an adjustment later on it doesn't distort the image balance.

Sigh...you just reminded me one of the many reasons why I loved owning a Sound Devices digital recorder.

The fostex fr2-le was what I was thinking about, the inner knob adjusts one channel, but naturally moves with the outer knob (at least mine did) so you can make side adjustments and then deal with just the single adjustment later.

you actually don't even have to do that with a 7 series deck. Just link the gain at the start and center your second channel. Now when you want to play with the balancetweak that secondary knob for balance of gain applied. As much as the usbpre2 is the economical alternative to the 7 series, there are just some features that I would mourn having to give up now that I've used them.
"This is a common practice we have on the bus; debating facts that we could easily find through printed material. It's like, how far is it today? I think it's four hours, and someone else comes in at 11 hours, and well, then we'll... just... talk about it..." - Jeb Puryear

"Nostalgia ain't what it used to be." - Jim Williams

Offline bluntforcetrauma

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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #10 on: May 14, 2012, 05:13:50 PM »
Sometimes I cant get within the suggested headroom of 6-8db's and I really  need a boost in post. Going from a file recorded at -16.8 db and bring it up to reasonable levels say -6db before " normalizing" to say 97% to leave a file that is -.03db.
what if any destructive properties am i bringing into the post processing room?
Adding gain then normalizing from a show that is captured so low to begin with, what are the consequences of a recording captured at -16.8db (in 24bit)
I know a bit off topic, but i am thinking about a tinybox V.2.
Would a tinybox be a good amp for my set up of DPA 4023 and 4022's?

so that is why i was asking some post processing questions and if one captures a show really low.  Does adding so much gain--distort the final product?
Here is a scenerio, is there a difference between:
1. one records a show at -16.8 db then adds gain, normalize to -.03 db for final recording or
2. one records a show at -6.2 db then adds gain, normalize to -.03 db for final recording

Would the final recording after the post work sound different in the scenerio above?

thanks

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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #11 on: May 14, 2012, 05:27:29 PM »
so that is why i was asking some post processing questions and if one captures a show really low.  Does adding so much gain--distort the final product?
Here is a scenerio, is there a difference between:
1. one records a show at -16.8 db then adds gain, normalize to -.03 db for final recording or
2. one records a show at -6.2 db then adds gain, normalize to -.03 db for final recording

Would the final recording after the post work sound different in the scenerio above?

thanks

Assuming that your digital gain routine in post-production is solid enough (in that it doesn't introduce new noise that doesn't already exist), then it's not optimum to let it ride like that but not an issue in my eyes. I've taken 2ch recordings in similar levels and applied serious amounts of compression (not far-field stuff, but onstage) without a downside. I once hear a sound engineer who studied sound in school talk about how it's really the top 30-40db that you're listening to, after that, it's hit and miss unless you're blasting the loud stuff and you're dynamic hearing really only picks up the quiet stuff when it's, well, quiet. I've never read up on it, but it jives with my experience.

I think you have to keep in mind where your noise floors are:
- ADC (so 24bit quantization noise)
- Preamp noise floor
- Mic noise floor
- Stupid people standing next to you.

Your preamp helps minimize noise floor effects of your ADC, but doesn't do squat about the stuff in front of it. It's just shuffling that around in the ADC's available area. I vaguely heard someone talk about converter noise being worse sounding (all things equal in volume) than analog gear hum, so there is probably some reason to do this, but I wouldn't worry too much, especially if you're not applying compression or anything else that's going to bring the mic/preamp/etc noise floor up closer to the top of the loudest sound (so a disproportionate gain of noise, and increased likelihood that you would hear it).

I dunno, that's probably blasphemy around here, but it's how I look at the picture.
"This is a common practice we have on the bus; debating facts that we could easily find through printed material. It's like, how far is it today? I think it's four hours, and someone else comes in at 11 hours, and well, then we'll... just... talk about it..." - Jeb Puryear

"Nostalgia ain't what it used to be." - Jim Williams

Offline willndmb

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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #12 on: May 14, 2012, 09:58:34 PM »
i like lb over tb for dual gain knobs, different battery options, and dual output
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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #13 on: May 16, 2012, 01:50:49 AM »
i like lb over tb for dual gain knobs, different battery options, and dual output

agreed.....
DPA/HEB 4060's > R09HR
MBHO648/KA100Lk/KA200/KA300/KA500 > SD702

stevetoney

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Re: Tinybox vs Littlebox
« Reply #14 on: May 16, 2012, 10:17:12 AM »
i like lb over tb for dual gain knobs, different battery options, and dual output

That's cool.  Different strokes for different folks...

For me, the sound alone is what differentiates the two and trumps all the rest of the features.  The 10Kohm/10Kohm output transformers in the tinybox sound awesome. 

The gain knob issue has already been discussed and Jon will be implementing a trim on v2.1 to deal with that.

I do agree that battery options on littlebox are nice, but Jon says that tinybox design will have increased options soon in that we'll have a tinybox version that can be used while recharging.  That would solve the festival challenge for me.

The comment about dual outputs IMHO doesn't hold...Tinybox offers dual outputs too; the 1/8 mini and line-out from the six pin connector.


 

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