Re: plugging line level into my crate TX15. all inputs...
Guitar amps are all set to a low Z resistance configuration. wich are made for guitar only. make sure you are using the right cables.
you need sheilded guitar cable not unshielded speaker cable in many cases these cables look exactly the same. look at your cable look for the words speaker or instrument. you need the instrument cable. if you still have that problem. then you may just not be satisfied with the quality of the amp it self.
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are you going from the board to a 'mic' input, or a 'line input' on the Mac? you will need to attenuate the signal to a mic input. try reducing output from the board by 50% and reduce the input level on the Mac by 50%, and see if the distortion is lessened or eliminated. From there balance board output to Mac Input until you find what sounds good outta the Mac.
Your symptoms would indicate the battery is defective. When a battery fails, its internal resistance goes up and they PROBABLY use this battery in place of having a separate filter capacitor so you will get hum or buzz as a result and no charging indication.
I ASSUME that you plugged your guitar into a DI box that then used BALANCED XLR cable to the Mackie board??? The guitar generates line level and the Mackie board inputs are mostly mic level... you will get distortion if you overdrive the Mackie board. You could try going into line level jacks, HOWEVER if you go any distance balanced interconnects must be used. Even the line level jacks require using TRS balanced cables. Try is using a DI box, and preferably one with a gain switch. Also fiddle with the ground lift switch on it for least noise or hum. I use the LiveWire brand DI boxes and they seem to work fine. Then it is important to set the gain with the trim on the MAckie so you don't clip. Also be aware that an acoustic guitar can "hear" speakers and you can get feedback or regeneration that will sound like you are in a cave.
Most of these have a SETTING in the menus that selects the source from different mics and/or line inputs. If the setting is to the line input instead of mic, and no audio is connected to the line input it will act like you described.
You should be using Dynamic mics such as a Shure SM58. They go into the first FOUR channels and if there is excessive gain and distortion, push in thee Pad button below the connector for those four channels. Inexpensive consumer microphones used with some Karaoke home systems are not suitable for this unit. You should be using XLR cables on the mics (balanced lines). The Pad buttons reduce the gain by a fixed amount of -20 Db for mics that have too much output to be controlled by the gain controls right above the connector. Ideally those should be no less than 12 o'cloock for good signala to noise ratio. Additional channels beyond the first four do not have as much gain and they do not have the -20 Db pad option.
If more than one input is bad, then problem has NOTHING to do with the preamps. Check list:
1. Make sure you are using BALANCED lines everywhere... either XLR or TRS cables.
2. Make sure ALL interconnected equipment, mixers, amps, powered speakers, CD players, etc. are ALL powered from the SAME receptacle or power distribution unit.
3. Do proper setup. Select each channel PFL and set the trims so the indicator never goes into clipping, but is in the 70% range during max volume input to mics, etc..
4. During operation the sliders should be at least 50% up on used channels and the mains. Setting of levels throughout the system is important for noise free operation. Using EXCESS gain at some point results in distortion and noise. Using sliders near the bottom position results in poor signal to noise ratio.
Now re-read #2 above... and believe it. I have seen a lot of equipment blown due to ground bounce of building power. That is why the pro's run power back to their mixer from the area where the amps are powered.
Make sure you are using BALANCED line to this... XLR connections boyh ends. Make sure ALL interconnected devices are powered from the same receptacle or power conditioner. Test your cables... they do go bad. This unit REQUIRES line level input. Do NOT expect a mic to drive it directely. Make sure your mixer uses the XLR outputs and is powered from the same receptacle, even if you have to run an extension cord to it. This is a bi-amped speaker so there are independent amps for high and lows. With nothing out and known good in there is very little electronics before the signal is split to the separate amps. At line level, your volume control should probably be about 2 o'clock with the EQ's straight up flat.
The mics on the singing machine are very low end mics and MAY not work on your other unit. The Voco has very sensitvie inputs to use with "professional" type microphones. The Singing machine mics are going to be fairly high output and likely to overload the voco inputs. Procure some professional mics like Shure, AKG, Sennheiser or others and don't forget to use a balanced to unbalanced adapter or cable on the mics.
Likely you haven't got the levels set properly. Start with the trim controls (head end gain) Make sure you are not clipping there. Also verify you aren't overdriving your amps. Remember that the outs are line level, not mic level so the gain oof following equipment needs to be set for line level.
ALWAYS USE balanced audio line from this unit... either XLR or TRS type cables. ALWAYS power ALL interconnected equipment from teh same receptacle or source to avoid ground bounce damage to circuitry. You don't say what you are using to record with. Make sure it has balanced inputs. For instance, connecting cables from this to the audio input jack of a PC which is unbalanced would be a disaster in audio quality. There would be a problem of levels and the unbalanced thing... You haven't given us enough information of your hardware configuration to analyze the problem more than what I have said here.