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Thread XLR to USB

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  • 3 participants
1 XLR to USB
1. I'm wondering what people think of XLR to USB. I've heard that USB adds extra noise to a signal, so it's better to use traditional audio ports. How do the two compare from people's experiences?

2. Shure seems to also sell a SM57 specifically for XLR to USB. I have a SM57-LC, which I want to use on my computer. Would it be a waste if I were to only purchase a XLR to USB to connect?
I wish it was as easy, as 'USB adds extra noise' but, by the time the signal is sent to the computer via the USB port it is already digital, the noise may be an indicator of the quality of the A/D conversion and also the Preamp.
If you are going from XLR to USB there MUST be a preamp and an A/D converter involved.
So to answer more specifically. It's the quality of the gear that's a problem not the format.
You can get nice USB soundcards.
good luck.

Peace out.


I have a Behringer MIC800 preamp, which I've tried connecting my Shure SM57-LC to via a TS connector - I then tried connecting the preamp to my computer using an unbalanced TS to 3.5mm. I tried using both decibel boost and phantom power, but the signal was awful. The signal received was so low, and the noise so bad, using a cheap $1 mic received better results.

Any advice?
You should maybe learn a bit about the basics of mics, preamplification and computer audio interface.

A dynamic mic like the SM57 does not need phantom power and it won't do anything to the level (and trying to use phantom power with asymmetrical connection can't work and is not recommended).

The "mic in" input embedded in most computers is to be used with electret microphone that need a polarization voltage and have an higher output level than dynamic mic. It's not made to plug in a dynamic mic or the output of a mic pre. You should try to plug the mic pre out to the "line in" input if your computer embedded audio interface have one.
The line-in doesn't seem to pick up any signal at all!**

Are there articles you'd specifically recommend for me to read? (I am trying to set up the Shure SM57-LC to record on my computer.*)

(Using a RealTek soundcard with line-in)

* An XLR male to female will be arriving in a few weeks in the mail. Right now, my mic (Shure SM57-LC) is connected to the preamp (Behringer Mic800) via a XLR to TS. Preamp is connected to built-in computer sound card (realtek with 6 ports, including line-in) via TS to 3.5mm in line-in.

** Connecting to the mic port on sound card yields faint signal, but no audible signal on line-in :-(