Optimizing M1 + Para DI
I've got an M1 installed in my Gibson SJ200 and have a Para DI. I've used the M1/Para DI combo for several gigs and have been pleased, but I want to make sure that I optimize the sound for tonight's gig. I know these are basic questions, and I'm sure they've been answered before, so apologies in advance.
What's the recommended gain setting on the Para DI for the M1? The manual that came with the DI lists recommended settings for other pickups but not the M1. I realize that the recommended gain setting is merely a recommendation and will need to be adjusted.
My set up is fairly simple: M1, Para DI and Boss TU2, run into a Fishman SA220. What's the preferred order of Para DI and Boss TU2 in the chain?
Other advice for achieving the best sound?
Thank you in advance.
With regards to setting optimal gain for nearly any signal, the "Setting the Gain" section of the Para DI manual outlines the best method - essentially, hit the strings at a hard dynamic level and turn up the gain while doing so until the signal overdrives, then back the gain off until it is clean at the hard playing dynamic. The trick is to strum or pick as hard as you are ever likely to in a performance, using that as your reference input signal for gain setting. It should ensure you a clean signal throughout your dynamic range.
With the Para DI, one tuner and an amp, you have some connectivity options. I would probably do the following:
Guitar via 1/4" to Para DI, XLR from Para DI to amp input and Para DI's 1/4" output to tuner and stop there. There is a slight risk of ground loop hum if you use an AC adapter to power the tuner and it doesn't share a power source with the amplifier.
Another way would be to use the tuner in the FX Loop of the Para DI using an insert cable.
Since the tuner is true bypass, it can even go between the guitar and the Para DI's input but, because the M1 is low output, the tuner would likely track the signal better after gain is optimized.