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Getting your loudness?

Discussion in 'F.O.H.' started by Ice Man, Jan 21, 2007.

  1. JBroll

    JBroll I MIX WITH PHYSICS!!!!

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    Don't quite have 3k to put into a converter, I'll try it with a 2496...

    Jeff
     
  2. LSD-Studio

    LSD-Studio HCAF crusher

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    i'm gonna test it with the RME fireface/multiface
     
  3. RS

    RS Wurst

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    Steven,

    Thanks for the great information, you're are really helpful guy, man! I've been using the Timeworks MC for a long time and always thought "What a great limiter!" - ok, now I know it isn't a limiter.

    I've got a question: Could you explain why you would use TWO of the Gclips? Does it get better the more of them you use? If this is the case, why wouldn't you use 3,4 or maybe 10 of them??

    BTW, your samples are great - I will order a cd in a few days :)

    Regards,
    Ben
     
  4. Zombietakeover

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    i think he uses two , to spread out the db increase......Instead of just using one gclip and slamming the plug ...you gradually bring it up with a db here and db there......
     
  5. Gnash

    Gnash Lefty

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    FUCK YEAH! I just put Gclips all over a mix today. WOW! MORE VOLUME! Great plug!
     
  6. Slate

    Slate Member

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    Hey Ben, its a good question, and much of it has to do with one simple fact: It always seems better to "spread the load" rather then slamming it on one thing. It always seems to work a bit better and sound a bit better.

    I'm really glad the clipping thing has caught one. With metal especially, you NEED to retain that punch in the final master without defeating the "loudness". And as I'm sure you all have realized, even 1db of an L2 can really take away from the beautiful smack of your drums. Clipping at first is a scary word, but when done right, it really works.

    Here is another tip: Some of you may find that with sudden tom fills, you will hear audible distortion when using clipping to bring up the mix. What is happening in this case is that the toms are bringing up quick bursts of low end that overload the clipper. To solve the problem, automate a quick eq with low shelf doing -2db at 100Hz, very quick. just on the tom fill where you hear distortion. That should eliminate any distortion. For an example of tom distortion, listen (if you dare) to Trapt HEADSTRONG, right on the first tom hits you can hear it distort.

    Ben thanks for the kind words, and enjoy your drum samples when you get them.
     
  7. TheStoryteller

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    Excellent advices!!!

    Since you obviously know what you're talking about; can you tell us something about the use of regular (single band) compressors in the mastering process? I've tried to use compressors in my mastering chain, but so far I've failed to see WHY. I simply don't know - theoretically - how the compressor should affect the signal in this case, and therefore I don't know what settings to use. Should the treshold be set just to push down the peaks, and if so; how much? Or should it compress all the time with a really low ratio? And what about attack and release? Many questions, I know... :)
     
  8. RS

    RS Wurst

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    Yes, I've had this problem with a metal album I mixed/mastered lately. It always occured when there were some extra guitars and eventually some extra vocals too and then the drummer hit the toms - uargh! distortion, just too much. I solved the problem through using the m/s compressor endorphin instead of the Timeworks MC. Endorphin (developed by the samplitude effects programmer) has also a clipping stage at the end of the chain but improves the balance of the mix through seperately compressing the M and S Signals.
    Your solution is a good quick work around if I don't want to use endorphin the next time.
     
  9. Gnash

    Gnash Lefty

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    This is exactly what I had to do on a floor tom yesterday! I like this plug. And it doesn't drain your cpu!
     
  10. Slate

    Slate Member

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    Hi Fredrik. When mastering, I'll use a compressor only when needed. Most of the time, its just to add a tiny amount of the final glue and to minimize the peaks in the most transparent way possible. Unless the mix is quite sterile and needs some flavor, I turn to a very transparent compressor, and use it minimally. Sometimes .5 db to 1db of gain reduction. But it all depends, if a mix is really spiking with peaks, I'll clamp the down more with the comp.

    MS mastering is great and I do it all the time. This means that you seperate the mix into the MID and SIDES. So lets say you have very dull guitars panned wide and a bright vocal in the middle, you can eq the guitars brighter without affecting the vocal. A great tool for this is the Voxeng MSED. Here is how you set it up:

    Copy your mix onto another stereo track. Put Voxengo MSED on both of them with "ENCODER" set. Pan one stereo track fully left, the other right. Route both to the same output buss. On this output buss, put another Voxengo MSED on "DECODER". So now you can put an eq on each of the stereo tracks, and the left one will be the MIDDLE and the right one will the SIDES. Have fun with that one, its a a great method to fix some imperfections in mixes.
     
  11. ::XeS::

    ::XeS:: Member

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  12. Ice Man

    Ice Man Member

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    Wow! I didn't expect this thread to take off like it did! I started using GClip as well and it defintely is sweet. I tried using two back to back at about 1.5db each with a pretty hard clip and just shaving the peaks and it seemed to retain all of the dynamics that were lost when using Waves L(1-3) limiters.

    Now, what's this about using your a/d converter? I'm still pretty new at all this. So, using my firepod, would I just take a send out and refeed it through its preamps to boost the signal?
     
  13. ~BURNY~

    ~BURNY~ Member

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    Don't bother unless you have a Lavry Gold or a Prism unit...
     
  14. JBroll

    JBroll I MIX WITH PHYSICS!!!!

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    Yeah, everything I had access to turned to shit when I clipped it.

    Actually tried it inadvertently with vocals a while back, set my preamp too hot and used a mic not made for that volume - in my defense, I didn't think my scream was *that* loud... between the diaphragm splattering like Jeffrey Dahmer in a morgue and the buzzing from the preamp it was just shit.

    I suppose that I could LP the fuck out of things to reduce the buzzy distortion effects from hi-fi being slammed (if this hasn't been brought up already, guitar distortion sounds the way it does because the speakers don't respond to frequencies nearly as high as hi-fi equipment, so doing that might change things) but I'm just going to worry about other ways to get loudness.

    I'm glad this thread went the way it did - this kind of discussion is why I come here, and why I've been able to learn what I know and not just be stuck at 'ok, this hits record, and this L1 thingy makes me loud as fuck...' like I could have been. Just from the stuff I've picked up around here, -8db RMS is no challenge at all and I find that I'm usually cutting down on perceived loudness because there's so much on tap between clipper tricks, proper compression, et cetera...

    Posting clips will let us do more as far as getting loudness taken care of, so if you want to jump on that we'll get even more going.

    Jeff
     
  15. Slate

    Slate Member

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    The thing about clipping is that it doesn't work on anything except QUICK peaks. If you go too hot with say, a guitar or a vocal, it will be audible distortion.

    What you want is to clip the peaks of the kick snare and toms, which will then bring all the rest of the stuff (vox, bass, guitars) UP in level, hence the louder mix.

    For A/D converter clipping, I send the mix out to an analog chain consisting of a mastering eq and compressor, then the output of the compressor FEEDs the A/D converter at LINE LEVEL, not MIC LEVEL, and then I send the mix into the A/D pretty hard, clipping the peaks, and resulting in a very hot mix.
    example:

    www.yellowmatterrecords.com/slate/AmbrosiaNewMix.wav
     
  16. Zombietakeover

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    explain this a little more....if you could please
     
  17. JBroll

    JBroll I MIX WITH PHYSICS!!!!

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    What he's telling you is that you basically have a few little 'pops' in volume that can be trimmed a little. These are going to come from the instruments mentioned more than anything else. They're basically the really fat people who sit on the bus and take up several seats on the crowded 334 so that a bunch of skinny people, who could easily fit three or four abreast in the same space, are forced to the aisle and a handful more are left out of the vehicle entirely. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to lop all but about 85 centimeters of the middle (try to keep the vitals, aye?) of these wretched lard-balloons (try to cauterize it on the spot, as well, because you can tell when blood stains haven't been properly taken care of) and position them in their proper places so that everyone can board and get where they want to go.

    When you have as much of a 'jump' as these percussive hits do, and you leave it there, you leave a lot of bandwidth unused but have some obnoxious snaps popping up here and there - think a bunch of two-story houses and a random skyscraper thrown into the mix here and there; if you want to take a picture of the skyline (your mix) you're either going to have very little houses (axes, vocals, the like) and very out-of-place Sears Towers (kick, toms, and that horrid beast of a snare) or normal-looking houses (axes, vocals, the like brought up to a good volume) and all but the first few stories of the latter lopped off (kick, toms, and that horrid beast of a snare getting smacked back into place) - and your mix will not be getting all it can be in terms of volume. Clipping will let the hits keep their character and sound (unlike too much compression all on its own, which will go from unused to 'pumping' if you pass through once and chomp down too hard) so that they can fit into the mix better - they'll be closer to the same 'steady' volume as your other tracks and as a result you can bring them, and other things, up in the mix without having so much needle bouncing that just leads to perceived quietness *and* clipping at the same time.

    In mastering, 99.9 percent of the time you'll have most of your stuff sitting pretty quiet, but then some obnoxious THWANK will pop you into the red and you'll wonder where the fuck it came from. If it wasn't for those smacks you'd have several decibels of gain to play with, but instead you're stuck where you're at because of those obnoxious hits... you think. If you have some really mean peaks, you can clip them lightly (or heavily, or in the middle, or whatthefuckever) and free up a little 'space' for everything else to come up. You have to be careful not to sound like you're just shaving off peaks, or drawing in right angles and straight lines with the pencil tool, but you'd be surprised what you can get away with before noticing fresh hell in your mix - try a light clip before you compress, and you'll not only get (1) an RMS a few decibels higher but (2) less 'pumping' out of your compressor... or more compressing before 'pumping', depending on what you want to do.

    Jeff
     
  18. RS

    RS Wurst

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    I've already heared some of your mixes at gearslutz, Steven, and everyone sounds just fat, no question.

    Here's an extract of the album I've mentioned above which is mastered with endorphin. Before endorphin I
    didn't compress it but sent it through the samplitude tape simulation. After endorphin I used the samplitude
    limiter (a great, very flexible thing) with a threshold of -0.2.
    Scarscab - Not In Your Hands

    Cheers
    Ben
     
  19. sorceron

    sorceron ken

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    can anyone recommend a good clipper similar to the GVST for us mac users?
     
  20. Ice Man

    Ice Man Member

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    Dude, seriously, your knack for visual analogies to get concepts across is just amazing. I want you to write a book. Not only for its incredibly useful insight, but for the obligatory humor and flair.

    Many thanks,
    Daniel.
     

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