III. All about Dynamics // JAN 25

After you've created your perfect track with the editing techniques we've discovered in the second live stream, we will explore how we can elevate our recording with different plugins, especially with a compressor and an equalizer! 🎚🎛🎧 

Please use this thread if you have any questions concerning the workbook or general questions concerning All about Dynamics!


Click here to access Session 3: All About Dynamics // Jan 25th (Live!)

Find the other sessions here: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 4 | Part 5


 


Download the third workbook here


I will post the answers to the questionnaire on Jan 31th! 

After the livestream, submit your assignments by replying to this thread!


Time Stamps (with courtesy of  philip.1 )

 

Spectral Peaks. (13:45)

Line Audio CM4 position (23:30)
Editing fast moving pieces. (26:45)
Purpose of spectral analysis. (27:50)

Mixing (30:00)
Mix bus (36:00)
Compressor (42:00).

What is a compressor? (57:20)

ReaComp (1:06:00)

Poll Result. (1:19)
Compression different to limiter. (1:20)
Ride the faders. (1:26)
Outboard Compressors. (1:30)

EQ (1:34:30). FX: ReaEQ
Cut low freqeuencies: High Pass to 56 Hz

Removing String Squeaks. (1:51:00)
Boxiness. (1:56)
Reverb (2:02). FX: ReaVerberate
Limiter. (2:17)

Export recording. (2:26)

De-noising. (2:37). FX: ReaFir.

Normalizing. (2:40:30)


Answers to the Questionnaire:

 

1. What is normalizing?

Normalizing is maximizing the highest peak in your file to 0db without any dynamic compression. If you're highest peak is at -6db, normalizing will boost your signal with 6db gain, but this will also bring up your noise floor +6db. This is why we need to adjust our input gain levels to peak about -12db to -6db during soundcheck to ensure the highest signal to noise ratio possible! 

 

2. How do we reduce low bass rumble?

A high pass or low cut filter will reduce every frequencies below a point of your choosing with a slope of 6db/octave or steeper! In classical music, we usually use flatter slopes as higher slopes (like 24db/octave) will mess with the phase of your signal.

 

3. What is displayed in the EQ?

The EQ displays the frequency spectrum of the audible channels if the plugin is inserted in the master channel. If you insert it only one the left channel, it will meter only the left channel. The visualization is also capable of showing frequency spectrum post-EQ and pre-EQ.

 

See you tomorrow, where I will dive deep into YOUR recordings!

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  • Hi Martin.

    Thank you for a really good course so far.

     

    You mentioned the Line Audio CM4 mics. a few times the other day.

    I have these mics and I'm very pleased with them. However I think they are a little dark sounding or the opposite or hars/to bright (hope you know what I mean)

    You mentioned you have the same mics. what are your opinion about this ? compared to the Neumann KM184 or your AKG414 for example ?

     

    The only thing I have to compare with is my Apogee mic+ also a great mic but very different than the CM4.

     

    Once again thank you and btw. the workbooks are great :-)

     

    Cheers,

    Anders

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    • martin 

      hi Martin.

      thank you for your reply. I still think there is to much reverb on the Bach piece but funny enough sometimes things sounds just right and then next time you here the recording somethings not the way you thought it was 😳

      I will keep on playing around with the reverb. 
       

      Have a nice weekend 😊

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    • Philip 

      Hi Phillip. 
      Perfect if you can use it. 
      I read somewhere that the cm4 need a pretty good sound interface with good preamps to avoid noise from the mics. (men hæng mig ikke op på det har nok læst det på Google et sted) I use a sound Devices MixPre 3ii which is really top noch but also pretty expensive but worth every  penny. But i’m pretty sure less van do it. 
       

      cheers. Anders. 

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    • Anders Skadborg Hansen I'm using the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 - so I think that is capable to power the CM4. 🙂(så det er jo bare super).

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    • martin Thank you very much for that Martin. That helps me in making my selection. 🙂

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    • martin Thank you. Unfortunately I haven't had time to edit my upload for tonight's workshop. Life happened 😄

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  • Hello Martin

    Thank you for the awesome lesson on dynamics!  I have edited my submission's movements, added dynamics, and normalized.  This is a truncated version of the piece. I used  a mid-side mic technique as you demonstrated in lesson 2 I believe. Nuemann KM 184 as mid, and AEA R84A ribbon for sides. Your thoughts or suggestions?

    Best

    David

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      david robinson wonderful! I really enjoyed the "breath" that the ribbon gives on the sides and you really subtly added dynamic processing ( you still have 6db of headroom though) and some reverb!

      Just be careful at 1:45, I think you mixed two takes where you adjusted the input gain of your mics. I recognized elevated noise levels from that point on (the slightly brighter shade of red is a visual representation of the higher noise floor).

       Mixing takes with different takes is always very hard, which is why we always take a lot of time for a proper soundcheck! It's the famous sentence every sound engineer learns during training "can you play the loudest part for me, please?" ? That way we ensure that we the input gain is set correctly, capturing everything with maximum dynamic range and prevent clipping!

       

      Edit: Just realized you send another file, I hope I wasn't too wrong with my assumptions, haha! The second file as a very string reverb I would tame that a little bit and shape it a little darker! Tell me about the levels of the side channels of the ribbon in both of these recordings! I think the second one is louder as ribbon mics tend to have a lot more noise!

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    • martin Thanks for listening to my piece! I did hear the noise you mentioned; especially the louder 2nd version. I normalized the 2nd version in Izotope Elements RX, and it seemed to make everything, including reverb and noise, louder. 

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      david robinson I listen to EVERY upload here and it is AWESOME! 🥳

       

      But you are right, normalizing will add exactly as much gain to your whole file as necessary for your loudest peak to reach 0dB (full scale), so something like denoising is helpful to do to your already normalized file!

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    • martin that is good to know; thank you. I will de noise after normalizing going forward.

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  • Hello Martin

    This is the file I meant to send; please listen to this one instead.

    Thanks 

     

    David 

  • Hi Martin, I recorded this with ZOOM H4n as microphone on Reaper, I edited it with EQ and Reverb, where did I go wrong? or okay?😊

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      Giuseppe Gasparini Awesome! I really like that recording! Maybe attenuate -3db between 200-400Hz as the sound is a little bit boxy, but other than it is very good! Especially the subtle use of reverb!

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  • Here it is my assignment exercise.

    Mixed, Compressed, equalized, reverbed, denoised, normalized.... I worked with two identical tracks emulating a stereo recording, although it was mono recorded, for the only purpose of practising, and followed all the steps.... I do not know if the result is good or not... I have started to feel "tinnitus" after some hours with the headphones!!! (Just exagerating), but at the end I could not decide wich parameters sounded better at each of the steps.....

    Anyway, this is my attempt!!. Thank you for your explanations and patience!!!. The audio result is far much better than my playing!!!

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      andres. iparraguirre You are describing a phenomenon with is called "listening fatigue" and is taken pretty seriously among broadcast editing station. Actually so seriously, that we are only allowed to edit 6h instead of 8h, as we tend to make only mistakes in the last two hours which would then needed to be corrected the next day!

      Your recording is a wonderful example how to enhance a mono recording with reverb! You have a perfectly stable phantom image (since it's mono), but still opening up the stereo stage with the reflections of reverb! Good job!

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  • Hi Martin, I have a question! I am interested in recording guitar duets, with myself playing both parts. I have worked out how to do that, by creating a second track, then recording part 2 while listening to part 1 through headphones. I'm pretty pleased with how it sounds so far! My question is, can just one note in one part be moved a bit, when it is not quite together in time with the other part? I have tried using alt and shifting along, like you showed in session 2, but that then moves the whole thing along. Is there a way of jiggling just one note, and leaving everything else intact?

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      • 3 yrs ago
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      Jasmine yes, make a split before and after that note, click and drag on that item while holding down the alt-key, this is called a "slip"-operation.

      Since the pandemic started I recorded and edited quite a lot like this. As the musicians are not in the same room performing together, I need to edit all the micro-adjustments that musicians usually do when they are playing together!

       (this looks really scary)

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    • Derek
    • Derek
    • 3 yrs ago
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    Hi Martin

     

    Here is my attempt at the assignment. This is the second attempt as the first one had too much background noise due to the proximity of my mic and my laptop I think. I have now moved a bit further from the laptop and the mic is at a different angle to it. This time I have recorded using the same Apex large diaphragm mic (Apex is a Canadian firm I believe) but I have used my ESI ESU1808 audio interface (mic plugged directly into it).

     

    I have added a little bit of compression, eq and reverb (on a separate track) then normalised in a new project as per the workbook.

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      Derek Thank you for that recording, awesome! 

      To combat background noise I'd recommned the the FIR Filter of Reaper, I was very impressed by the quality (and I usually use a very expensive de-noiser by Izotope for that).

      Congratulation on your compression settings, I couldn't notice any distortions or pumping! You can also go a little bit higher with you reverb since it is barely noticeable at the moment. But looking at the stats of your file you are well below 0db (-11,2db for true peak level), so check again the step by step guide for normalizing a wav-file!

       

       

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      • Derek
      • Derek
      • 3 yrs ago
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      martin Thanks for your comment Martin. Very kind. It came at the right moment as I have just been looking at another recording and trying to find the 'de noiser' to apply to it - now I know what to look for. I will check the file I posted to confirm it was the one that was normalised and not the one that I saved before normalising.

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      Derek Awesome, I'll look forward to the next one!

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    • Derek
    • Derek
    • 3 yrs ago
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    Hi Martin

     

    Quick question if you don't mind. Are you familiar with the Rode M5 microphones. I've seen a good deal on a matched pair. I can't really justify spending more than that at the moment but if they would be better than my current single large diaphragm condenser mic they would probably be worth buying.

     

    Thank you

     

    Derek

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      Derek I am sorry, I only know the Rode NT5 and the XY-Mic, but the brand (australian I believe) is known for reasonably priced tools with a lot of bang for your buck! 

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  • Hello Martin and all,

     

    Here is my edit of Klangbild 1 with dynamics effects included.  I used a subtle reverb effect (I think).  I found that if I made it heavier it didn't sound natural, to me at least.

     

    Attached is a wav file of my recording and screenshot of the plugins I used.

     

    It's possible I may not be able to attend the livestream on Monday, but I'm hoping to make it.

     

    Thanks,

    Rick Ankney

    • By mistake my two files uploaded twice.

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