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Software suggestions for monitoring HD500x clipping

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I’m using a HD500x with a JTV-59. Both inputs are set to Variax.

 

I’m planning on plugging the SP/DIF output into my PC (Windows 7) and monitor the output from the HD500x going into to two KRK RP5 studio monitors. Alternatively I might go from the POD via XLR to my Focusrite 2i2 audio interface and then out to the KRK monitors.

 

Does anyone know of a simple piece of software that might run standalone (i.e. not a VST plugin so I have to open Cubase or some such thing) that will monitor the input and I can have almost like a widget on my Windows desktop?

 

I’d like something that would visually show clipping i.e. a red light or whatever. Sometimes its hard to hear when a distorted sound starts to clip, so I find a visualisation useful.

 

I had borrowed a Fishman SA220 PA from a friend and whilst very sensitive it has little red lights that flash when the input is clipping, I have been plugging directly via XLR into that, but I need to give the Fishman back so a software based solution that does the same thing would be good.

 

Any ideas?

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Audacity is reasonably lightweight and allows you to monitor audio levels. It indicates when clipping occurs, if you look close enough.

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Recommend to use digital outputs for metering (you avoid the calibration issues and the unknown of when the analog signal indicates peaks or clipping in the HD's digital domain).

I ocasionally use a free demo version of a stand-alone audio metering software on the MAC. There must be something similar for the PC.

I have not found a simple clipping indicator software package. Also came to the conclusion that clipping is not that important to look for because you can usually hear it (even before it comes close to really clip).

My rules are that no internal HD signal path must exceed -12dBFS peak if you want to stay away from compression / soft clipping. Somewhere between -6dBFS and -3dBFS peaks I always find distortion produced by any HD model I ever checked closely (all preamps and a few EQs, compressors, and boost effects). That said, there is nothing wrong if you like the effect a model produces when it gets close to clipping. And, for optimal signal strength and SNR keep the peaks just below your self-imposed limit.

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