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Would this be close to a console (soundwise).
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27th April 2005
Old 27th April 2005
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Would this be close to a console (soundwise).

Lately I've been thinking I'd like to have a console instead of upgrading to ptools HD, but given the absolutely unpredictable nature of this industry I dont want to spend that chunk of change (that I'd have to save first anyway). So I've been thinking of either buying a sidecar/small mixer, or augmenting my protools mix setup. (I dont want to spend more than what a Protools HD3 would cost if possible.
Also If I ever come upon hard times, most of the gear listed will probably net at least what I've paid for it)

right now I'm using a coleman monitor for my control room and 2trk monitor.
And I'm thinking of viewing the folcrom as if it were a 16 channel console where pretty much little is done in plugins and everything is done via outboard.

Because I'm doing Hip Hop/Rnb, everything thats recorded via mic pres is pretty much overdubbed so I'm ok in that area with what I have. This leaves the need for 16 channels of EQ, at least 8 channels of compression and a 2 channel mic pre for the 2 bus. (I'm thinking shoot out a bunch of pres for 2 bus and make a solid decision on a set of pres, and work with these pres only as if it were a console, besides we already make enough decisions). Also I'd like to find some type of multi channel low/hi pass filter. I dont know of any yet.

This is what I'm thinking. (I know it leaves alot to still be done in the computer considering most of what we do requires more than 16 tracks and I'd have to work out ffx sends and returns also, but I'm thinking the limitations will cause me to build minimalist methods that maximize the sound. Also, I think if I focus on the most crucial tracks, then plugins will be fine for the rest ):

Given the outboard that I have used and what I like on certain chains this is my direction:

1 dbx160xt, api 550b
2 dbx 160xt, api 550b
3 dbx 160xt, api 550b
4 dbx 160xt, api 550b
5 Amek CIB
6 Amek CIB
7 Tube Tech CL1B/Massive Passive L
8 Distressor/ Massive Passive R
9 Avalon 737
10 SSL G series channel
11 undecided comp/NTI EQ3
12 undecided comp/NTI EQ3
13 Plugins
14 Plugins
15 Plugins
16 Plugins


I have not worked out my 2 bus gear but I'm thinking of striving for not needing 2bus comp/EQ (also If I print any of the above channels, I could free up that gear for 2 bus though I probably wouldnt use a 160xt on my 2 bus!!!!)

How close would this be to a console soundwise? I know the sound of a console = the sum of all of its electronics in each section, including pre/eq/comp/bussing/monitor. How close of an approximation of that sound should I expect from the above considering I'm using some decent chains? The whole point is that Im attempting to supercede what I'm doing in ptools and what I would get from an HD rig investment. I know I'd lose recall, but again I'm thinking minimalist. **** recall just make it sound good!!!. I will print some things as stems incase I need to do a vocal up/down or kick snr or bass up/down

Should I expect the improvement I'm looking for from the above? OR am I barking up the wrong tree/direction???
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27th April 2005
Old 27th April 2005
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hey no ssl, I don't have a console and I've never worked on a console, but in my current chin I sent 8 outs from my rosetta, 4 of those outs are going through API 560's. sometimes in bypass, sometimes not if I want to eq things, then all that is going into a Folcrom being amped by a Pendulum MDP-1A. And it sounds good to me. A folcrom or any kind of summing box is cool ,because if you have lots of outboard you can hook them up to all your outputs and just throw them into bypass until you need to use them. And if you want to print the results of a track etc... just solo and take it out of the Folcrom back into your DAW. This way you save lots of inputs but still kind of use all your outboard as "inserts". Sound confusing I know, and your inital question was about console sound. But i like where you are taking it. Since i don't have a console or have any experience with a console my main focus was just getting a better overall sound with summing. And I think I've achieved that with my current setup.
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27th April 2005
Old 27th April 2005
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I would love a console but can't see what I would do with it except impress the ladies.

The future is CPU and analog outboard!!!

Please send all BCM10 to me!
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27th April 2005
Old 27th April 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SnakeCained
I would love a console but can't see what I would do with it except impress the ladies.

The future is CPU and analog outboard!!!

Please send all BCM10 to me!
This sounds alot like calling the ICON a very expensive mouse. It is not!!

If youre #1 priority is the music you are mixing, a console will let you concentrate on the music much more. Everytime you have to move from the sweet spot to turn knobs and stuff, you are breaking the vibe. Which with no doubt will impact the music you are mixing in a negative way. Thats the only true price you are paying when purchasing a console.
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27th April 2005
Old 27th April 2005
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why not

IF that is the case then why not simply build a desk that puts your most crucial rack gear in the sweet spot?? I'm thinking similiar to most mastering lab set ups. Besides, if you are using an icon and still using analog outboard instead of plugs, then you leave the sweet spot to control that analog gear also
#6
27th April 2005
Old 27th April 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no ssl yet
IF that is the case then why not simply build a desk that puts your most crucial rack gear in the sweet spot?? I'm thinking similiar to most mastering lab set ups.



You mean kinda like this? This was my old setup... had a custom made table with a Manley Mixer/HEDD192 in the center....
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Would this be close to a console (soundwise).-desk.jpg  
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28th April 2005
Old 28th April 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no ssl yet
IF that is the case then why not simply build a desk that puts your most crucial rack gear in the sweet spot?? I'm thinking similiar to most mastering lab set ups. Besides, if you are using an icon and still using analog outboard instead of plugs, then you leave the sweet spot to control that analog gear also

Well.. yeah, dude.. don't get me wrong, alot of people do it and it works. Soundwise like you originaly asked, i'm sure you can get excelent results because you will have different flavors for different things. I am not a mix engineer by the way, I record my songs etc.. and at the place I do this kind of stuff, my engineer is reaching for knobs all over the place.. having to mix to a computer screen sucks to (but that's a different story).

The real benefit of a console or Icon etc, it's how your mind concentrates alot more on the music than reaching for some certain thing (even if you stay on the sweet spot) A console just makes everything more confortable and ergonomicaly easier to get around in. Which happens to work in your favor and the music. I also think it makes you work faster. And faster (to me) equals to not loosing the vibe.

I don't know if i'm gettting my point across right. But I tried : )

But if your options are getting a crappy console vs. great ouboard, by all means.. get the outboard!!
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28th April 2005
Old 28th April 2005
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I THINK YOU ARE MISSING THE POINT OF THE THREAD

I Meant totally from a sound quality perspective. I am aware of the need to mix in the sweetspot, but IMO this has nothing to do with a wanting to achieve the sound traditional console/room of outboard gear. Infact something like an icon enables you to stay in the sweetspot more than a 72+ channel ssl. (By the time you slide to one end of the board you are out of the sweet spot, hence the reason most crucial tracks are assigned to middle channels.

IF I had some pultecs in the back of the control room and plugins in the sweetspot, I would think it would be worth a trip outside of the sweetspot to patch and EQ
#9
28th April 2005
Old 28th April 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jose Mrochek
But if your options are getting a crappy console vs. great ouboard, by all means.. get the outboard!!
I agree as long as we're not calling the Folcrom a crappy console.

Get the Folcrom and slowly add high quality outboard stuff. You'll notice a huge improvement vs. ITB right away.

I'd rather have 3 or 4 great outboard pieces than 20 mid level pieces. YMMV
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28th April 2005
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I have a folcrom

Producher I know you are a strong fan of the folcrom (SO AM I, I have one!) My main question is how far I am from the sound quality of a console with a mix system and a folcrom. I'm such a fan of the folcrom that I'm beginning to think 16 ch is not enough. I'm wondering if there would be some benefit in having all of my drum mults summed on the folcrom instead of summed in the computer and bussed to a channel on the folcrom
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28th April 2005
Old 28th April 2005
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How far are you from the sound quality of a console with the Folcrom? Hmm. I don't own a console, but i think you are talking about 2 different beasts. And sound quality is real subjective if you've already got all this sick outboard/converters etc...... I think if you are getting bangin' mixes from "analog summing" why would you want to pay 80 grand for a console? I mean if you like the luxury of mad faders, EQ on every channel and potentially a bus compressor all in one gigantic piece of real estate that's gonna engulf your living room, then you need to step to a console. One person on the slutz you to say "if it makes a 1% difference, I'll buy it". honestly a lot of my contemporaries are making killer tracks all ITB with nothing but good monitors, a good pre and good converters. I have a sick rack now, but sometimes i wonder if it is all worth it. I mean i know it is....... but i think what really matters at the end of the day is the song.
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28th April 2005
Old 28th April 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edIT
i think what really matters at the end of the day is the song.

That's something I sometimes forget when I'm losing myself in my gearaddiction.
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28th April 2005
Old 28th April 2005
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Neotek Elite..

Then grab the bling bling outboard. They are puchy as helly and have great pre's and EQ that would suit ur kinda stuff. They can be had for around $15K in decent condition and mike @ Sytek can sort out all parts and service etc . Failing that try a small frame Neotek Elan.

Cheers
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28th April 2005
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Thanks wiggy I will have to try one

Of course it's about the song. Thats not said, because it should go without saying. HOwever, there is a definate difference between the sound of the mix system with and with out the folcrom. I'M not sure how it is with HD, but I know it's nearly impossible to get the low end right without the folcrom for me. (Can I get it to sound good, of course, but in order to match what I hear on the presence/punch of Cds, it is impossible FOR ME without the folcrom (other summing may work but this is what I've tried.))

This is why I have begun to think about using a console and admitting that protools is not there yet. OF course I would rather not have a console if there is a cheaper way to go about an = result to a highquality console (It wouldnt chrowd my living room though otherwise, what would I keep at the studio).\

At the end of the day Im gonna have to rent time in a room here and do a mix via the folcrom with outboard, and via the console (think ssl) and compare. I thought maybe someone here had already done it and maybe they could comment. I know that someone else's trial is not my own, but its because of this forum that I tried the folcrom in the first place. (otherwise I'd still be in ptools alone pulling my hair out)

With that said, I've never mixed on a HD system so maybe the problems have been corrected , but in comparision to what I get with the folcrom, mixing itb seems like its almost compressed in comparison and the more I tried to push the lo end, the harder it would hit the compressor and lose bottom. (guys you dont need to tell me about gain structure or tracking lower. I am doing things correctly. ITs just different)

This is why I"m thinking what If I buy some more outboard and do none of the mixing itb. If I get better results mixing fewer tracks itb w analog summing, then shouldnt it stand to reason that if I mix even fewer tracks itb (by having complete outboard chains on 10-24 channels) that the result would be even better. My question is should I expect it to sound comparable to a console which is the summ of hi quality circuits if I sum hi quality circuits via the folcrom

One way or another I'll solve it
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28th April 2005
Old 28th April 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no ssl yet
At the end of the day Im gonna have to rent time in a room here and do a mix via the folcrom with outboard, and via the console (think ssl) and compare. I thought maybe someone here had already done it and maybe they could comment.
I've mixed PT HD to the Folcrom once to see how i would like it.

I mix PT HD on an SSL just about everyday.

Of the 2 i would still choose the console.

Apart from the sound which is like comparing apples and oranges, the functionality of mixing on a console far out weighs everything else.

I can mix a song in 3-4 hours on an SSL, which would take me longer on the Folcrom system.

Just being able to grab the EQ's,dynamics,pans and faders on the fly speeds up the process tenfold.
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28th April 2005
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Thrill

I know that mixing with ptools/folcrom will take me double the number of hours (approx) that it would take on a console. I know the console provides the benefit of instant gratification when reaching for faders/processors

My main concern is the apples to oranges. If I augment a summing solution with console parts (EQ/Comp/quality monitor section) How far will I be soundwise from a console. (Isnt this in all actuality what everyone who purchases an icon is doing?)

After those with icons spend 90Gs wont protools with outboard gear still sound like protools with outboard gear?

I think I'm gonna spend on the outboard side and even if it is not quite the same as ssl, I'll still sound as good as people who bought 90G icons. My thinking is later all I will have to add is the console after buying the outboard first, and maybe by the time I'm finished buying outboard(never) someone will build a DAW that sounds like what u put in via the outputs
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28th April 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no ssl yet
I know that mixing with ptools/folcrom will take me double the number of hours (approx) that it would take on a console. I know the console provides the benefit of instant gratification when reaching for faders/processors

My main concern is the apples to oranges. If I augment a summing solution with console parts (EQ/Comp/quality monitor section) How far will I be soundwise from a console. (Isnt this in all actuality what everyone who purchases an icon is doing?)

After those with icons spend 90Gs wont protools with outboard gear still sound like protools with outboard gear?

I think I'm gonna spend on the outboard side and even if it is not quite the same as ssl, I'll still sound as good as people who bought 90G icons. My thinking is later all I will have to add is the console after buying the outboard first, and maybe by the time I'm finished buying outboard(never) someone will build a DAW that sounds like what u put in via the outputs
People who buy Icons are more concerned with the ability and ease of the physical controls.

People who buy Folcroms are concerned with issues with the summing in DAW's.

People who buy consoles are concerned with all of thosethings and others as well.

To me the best of both worlds is to have the analog console and the outboard gear.

It helps when you have a console that you don't have to use as much outboard.

Basically a console where you can mix a song entirely on it if need be for time sake.
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28th April 2005
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Thrill raises some good points.

First of all. I worked on a Neve 8068 for about 7 years. 60 hours a week.

Than I switched to Pro Tools in a very seperate situation doing completely different music than I did in my analog days. Poppity Pop Pop.

So I may not be the best person to ask this question.

What I will say:

Forget HD unless you really care about features. The Mix buss is absolutely no better. For those who "think" it does, you are just rationalizing your decision. I would have been the first person to completely remix my recent stuff if it mattered. It didn't.

I believe that the Folcrom makes a huge difference in the Low End of a mix. Mixing with the Chandler TG-2 as my make up gain, reminded me alot of mixing on a Neve. But I don't have a Neve sitting next to me to try.

Although I also can't afford a real Neve or the time to Maintain it, so I'm happy with my current solution.

I believe that 16 channels is enough for my needs. I don't use 2 tracks for drums though. I use one for kick, one for snare, two for toms, and 2 for Overheads and Room. That's six channels for an 8 channel drum setup.

If I really needed more inputs, I would just get another Folcrom. Than I would use 2 sets of Pre's (SSL and Neve) and choose each track depending on which sound I wanted.

I haven't tried an SSL pre with my Folcrom so I don't know if that sound is achievable. I'm pretty sure an SSL doesn't use a passive mixing buss section.

If I really was considering buying that much outboard gear, I would look hard at a real console. Although I would be weary about their quality vs. what you have now. You might actually be downgrading. And you won't have Total Recall either. That's important to me.

I just finished mixing a 13 song modern indie rock band this week and the band tweaked all the mixes in just one day. The Folcrom saved my ass for this project. The drummer and bass player were actually happy.

I can't imagine recalling and changing 13 mixes in one day using a real console.

You are treading into some uncharted territory. So you may need to try stuff yourself.

Good Luck.
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28th April 2005
Old 28th April 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Produceher

I can't imagine recalling and changing 13 mixes in one day using a real console.


Good Luck.
The one benefit and drawback of working on any DAW mix system.
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28th April 2005
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kenny you raise a gooooood point

Produceher you have a point, It's been years since I've been without protools recall. I may be getting carried away. I'm gonna wait till I can get a console (ssl). I get pretty good sounds outta my mixplus/folcrom rig. I think I may add a few api channels or some other color full outboard and keep rocking the way that I have. I think the way I mix now is muccch different from what I used to do on consoles. since I do mainly my own stuff (or other stuff that I track) the way I mix is kinda like a painter. I look at the canvas and then I picture the color thats needed (like api/dbx). I patch that in, do this on a few tracks then print the results. Basically it takes alotttt more time but I keep on painting till the final picture takes place. kinda like building from a click track in production.

OK I'll go back to work. Thrill I understand what the icon camp is after, I just dont think it's worth 90Gs to attain it (I'd get a console instead). When its all said and done. I do get some pretty good mixes so I'll keep mixing.

Thrill I do have a ? for u and others. As I do hip hop and am always looking for ways to create attack, How much would I gain from adding the drawmer gates (201) to my rig? How much diff is it from say the digi gates? (of course outboard gates would be cool in my mults though)

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28th April 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no ssl yet
OK I'll go back to work. Thrill I understand what the icon camp is after, I just dont think it's worth 90Gs to attain it (I'd get a console instead). When its all said and done. I do get some pretty good mixes so I'll keep mixing.

Thrill I do have a ? for u and others. As I do hip hop and am always looking for ways to create attack, How much would I gain from adding the drawmer gates (201) to my rig? How much diff is it from say the digi gates? (of course outboard gates would be cool in my mults though)


Well if all you do is work in PT it may be worth it.

Again there is something to be said for the naturalness and ease of use being able to grab something at an instant(even if its a plug).

Also physically as well as mentalily the way you work changes when you sit behind a physical console.

There is something physically reassuring when you sit behind a console that weighs a ton like an SSL.

I guess its the feeling you get driving some of those 4 wheel all terrain vehicles.

Basically whatever is thrown at you, you can either handle it or knock it over.

I've always loved analog gates especially the Drawmer gates.

And yes they do sound different on drums than the Digi gates.

The Digi gates are very neutral.

A 2 channel used unit is pretty cheap these days so yeah its worth it picking one up.
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