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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  • 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

      • martinTeam
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      • martin.3
      • 1 yr ago
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      Rick Ankney I think I talked about it in the live stream, your recording will benefit from taking a closer look into your reverb settings, especially the EQ and the room size! :)

      Like
    • Igornull
    • Igor.2
    • 1 yr ago
    • Reported - view

    Hi. Martin. It´s being hard to keep pace with recording, Sor´s challenge, studying, etc. Plus, my nails are making every noise possible this week (I´ve been trying a new shape and it doesn´t work) so I´m sending the same song this week, but this time with all the make-up. Although I´m far from getting the result I want, I´m learning a lot in this course, so THANK YOU!

     

    On the other hand, last week I asked you about recording more than one guitar, but didn´t explain myself. My question was about recording at home different parts one by one and then mixing them. Any tips on this?

     

    BTW thanks a lot, Philip, for the time stamps.

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      Igor I will go over that today since Jasmine posted a wonderful "do it yourself" duo! 

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  • Hi Martin,

    I am a non-expert Ableton user, but I wanted to try Reaper for this course, and still not get used to it yet. My biggest problem was latency.  You can check my settings if it is wrong. Should I decrease the buffer size? Latency decreases then, but I don't know what happens if I do that. 

    So I made my recordings with Ableton. I recorded mono with a cardioid conderser microphone (Audio Technica AT2020). I used built in effects, EQ Eight and stereo maker.

    By the way, do you recommend stereo maker plugins? I used default settings for the stereo maker and I still don't know how to use it. I couldn't see that in Reaper effect list. Do you recommend any plugins? (preferably free)

    I still don't understand the reverb settings of Ableton,  and didn't like the results of Reaper, so I used Audacity which is simpler. But I lost volume a bit after reverb, is it normal?

    See you at the workshop.

    Thanks,

    Gokce

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      Gokce Turkmendag Hi Gokce, I think you need to use your Behringer device as an ASIO interface to make the best use out of its converting capabilites! In Ableton you are already using the behringer interface with an ASIO driver, in Reaper you are using "WaveOut", I think this is causing the latency. Btw, increasing the Buffer Size will increase latency since you allow your machine more time and reserves for computing! But since you are not in a live situation, higher latency shouldn't be a problem! When your buffer size is too smal, your playback will click and pop, since you will get audio drop outs!

      When I go for realism in a recording, I usually don't use a stereo maker plugin since it will spread out the frequencies in a random manner which will create a very blurry phantom image. In that case, I usually would grab a nice reverb and let it do the heavy lifting for creating spaciousness! But sometimes, when I finalize a recording, I do make a stereo file just a tiny bit wider with my "bx_digital V3", but only something between 6%-10%!

      Sometimes the standard settings of a reverb will decrease the dry signal by -3db. This has to do with the reverbaration radius, the point in a room where the dry and the wet signal are at the same level. I think this is just to give you a starting point for your reverb settings (since this is supposedly the best place to put your mics down, right down at the edge of your reverbaration radius).
       

      Like 1
    • martin thank you for your answer, see you in next workshop!

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  • Hi Martin,

    Here is my piece, recorded on a Zoom H6. I didn't use compression as I felt there wasn't a huge dynamic range in my recording, but I've used some basic EQ, reverb, and used the limiter to boost the signal. I have included a screenshot showing my FX settings. Any advice for improvement will be much appreciated.

    Thanks,

    Barry.

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      • martin.3
      • 1 yr ago
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      Barry That's a wonderful setting you found there! Especially the EQ of the reverb is masterfully done, the pre-delay is enveloping your signal together wonderfully!

      And I really like that you color coded your channels, this helps so much keeping your workspace organized. I am usually too lazy for that and always regret it, but Reaper acutally has a function to automatically color your tracks (I think even  based on key words, so that your main pair of mics or your reverb track always get the correct color!).

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    • Robertnull
    • amateur guitarist, guitar addicted
    • Robert
    • 1 yr ago
    • Reported - view

    Hi, I am not sure where I should have posted my first recording and edit - because I am a bit behind and have not applied the stuff from the 3rd session. So I put my mp3 (mono record and a bit of editing) into the thread of the 2nd session. I hope that it is in the right thread there and that it is not too late to be considered at that level of the 2nd session.

    Like 1
  • Hi Martin

    Here's my stab at a bit of dynamics editing. Attached are screenshots for compressor (not sure there's enough dynamic range but had a play without really hearing what I was doing. Equaliser I think helped with general boomy muddiness. A bit of reverb for the hell of it and nothing with the limiter as I didn't know what I was doing from  the PDF and haven't had time to re-visit the video session. The threshold dB was already at -0.1dB at if the reduction fader is one of the things at the sides that bounce about then it was never still!

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      • martin.3
      • 1 yr ago
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      Mark Edwards I think I talked a little bit about that recording in the live stream, but I'd recommend to make good use of the EQ of the reverb (try something like 50 - 3000Hz!). Right now the reverb is masking a good portion of your otherwise wonderful recording, so the EQ will help and probably turn down the volume of the reverb. Increasing the room size will probably do wonderful things to a recording like this as well!

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  • Not sure why it didn't upload the other 2 files - trying again

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    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!

    Like
  • Ok, here's my attempt. I've included a screenshot with the plugin settings (and some last-minute edits 😅). This time I recorded (quite some takes of) Landslag III. I tried several recording positions with my H4N Pro and lowering the recording level to 80. Bringing it in way closer and reducing the recording level lowers the noise a lot but it's still quite high. So that definitely needs some more work. I also see that I accidentally disabled number 4 of the equalizer. Oh well. Really need to get some sleep.

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      Barry van de Graaf I'll show some denoising with your recording today, but since you are using RX as well, try to slide the "Reduction" - fader up! I think 10-12db is the standard position, right now you are only reducing about 2.9db of noise 🧙‍♂️

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    • martin Ok! Awesome 🙂 Understanding how to apply plugins correctly is quite challenging 😅

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      Barry van de Graaf oh definitely! I have no idea what half of my plugins are doing! 🧙‍♂️

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    • martin Well... enough magic to make a living?

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      Barry van de Graaf Hehe, the more plugins an engineer uses the more you can charge, haha 😂 

      But on a serious note, I once had an issue with a recording and I knew only one plugin that could solve this issue without booking another recording day (it was a wrong note within a chord that he didn't recognized, since it was a world premiere he really wanted it to be correct). But as this plugin cost about 600€ I said to the musician "Listen, I don't really need this plugin for myself, so I won't simply buy it to fix, but if you wanna have that note fixed, you need to at least chip in". In the end we had three choices: Fix it with a 600€ plugin, book the hall for another day and hoping that we can fix it with a re-record (that meant editing together two takes that have been tracked on two different days with probably different mic settings, so a lot of post production work as well) or just simply leave the wrong note there 🧙‍♂️
      I won't say what we did 🤫 

      Like 1
    • martin Don't spill the beans 😄 I have wrong notes all the time in my recordings 🤔 Let's call it some extra charm.

      Like 1
  • Hello Martin.
    I have a problem with the denoiser pluguin witch is the last plugin that you explained in the previous session. When I activate it affects the entire track with which the result is horrible. Do I have to make a selection on the timeline? If so, how is it done?

    thank you very much!

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      Emili I will quickly go over denoising again!

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    • martin Thank you!!

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    • Emili I saw it very clearly yesterday, thank you!

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