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theBackwardsman
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#1
28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Waves API 2500 users

Question for 2500 users, do you usually clip the input on the 2bus?
I tend to mix into it and usually drive it pretty hot, not much GR but its clipping a lot on the input, do you prefer not doing this and driving the output harder instead for rock mixes?

The reason I ask is not to rip off setting but I havent done any mixes yet without clipping the input and it would be nice to know others workflow until next time.
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Maybe I'm missing something, but what you're describing sounds like just flat digital clipping, which is something I try to avoid at all costs. Or does the plugin have some kind of artificial clipping thing that operates below the 0dbfs headroom of the DAW?
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theBackwardsman View Post
Question for 2500 users, do you usually clip the input on the 2bus?
I tend to mix into it and usually drive it pretty hot, not much GR but its clipping a lot on the input, do you prefer not doing this and driving the output harder instead for rock mixes?

The reason I ask is not to rip off setting but I havent done any mixes yet without clipping the input and it would be nice to know others workflow until next time.
To me this sounds like you are mixing way to hot! Let's try mixing with -6dB peaks max at every channel (I say max, so don't have -6dB peaks at every channel..)
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theBackwardsman
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Well this is intentional, I work with busses/stems mostly and I actually do like driving the input kinda hot but considering changing this due to the hazzle of always having to watch out for distortion, the input dist sounds much worse than the output when in the red.
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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If it sounds too hot it is.

If you like the results of driving the input a touch hot, go for it. There are no rules.

I don't use the 2500 plug as a 2bus comp, but I do use it to shave off some peaks on a vocal bus.

I seem to really dig it with the meters hitting about 4-5 db reduction, 10:1 ratio with fairly fast attack and release times.

I 'think' I have the threshold around the +4 area, usually, around 9 o'clock, dialed so it's right.

Just do what feels good to you bud...
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Thats the issue, I like the character and grit from driving the input kinda hot, but obviously its not recommended since its distorting, i know that.
Just wanted to get some tips, in all the other threads its all about the settings, not much gain talk.
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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You just answered your own question. If you like driving it hot, drive it hot.

It could be your secret trick.

Mix away bro, mix away.
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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haha not really unfortunately, usually I am the only one who hears this but now one of the client has noticed it, so I might have to change the settings, which sucks when you mix into it!

I'll check if I can get equivalent level/glue with the make up gain, but then I guess I'll have to explore the "new" function also..
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Don't for a second worry about the output level if that's what you're taping about... Only focus on the "glue."

Outup volume can get louder, but once you clip off a waveform, you'll never get it back.
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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In the genre I'm mixing I have to worry about volume also, to stay competitive.. I know how to mix for punch and glue, but don't have mastering skills or gear, and no bands are willing to pay for mastering, those cheap fckrs
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Buy a Brickwall limiter plugin.

Massey L2007, waves L2, digidesigns maxim... There are a lot of them out there. Try some out and pick up the one that works best for you. You'll get far better results that way.

By the way, there a lot of great mastering guys with very reasonable rates and quick turn around. You need to sell it to your clients. If they're already paying you to do a service for them, it should be well worth it to them to spend a bit more to have it finished.

You just need to sell them on that before you start working with them. Educate your clients before you even think about hitting record.
#12
28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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You need to seriously re-evaluate your approach. You should NEVER be even close to clipping the input... nor ever even close to clipping on any of your busses.

You are confusing the hotness of the final mix... which can be determined at the very END of the chain... with what's going on throughout the chain.

Above advice was correct. Your recorded tracks should be peaking in most cases no higher than -6db or so. Your busses should be peaking no higher than -6db or so.

Your master buss up until the LAST plugin (not the waves api) should never reach -6db.

I suffered the same confusion about a year ago. I was pushing everything trying to maximize gain everywhere. It's a mistake. There are many reasons for what I have just said, and they are all valid.

Now, after all that is done, and you have an output signal below -6db coming out of waves api... THEN if you want a presentation master to give the band or whatever, and you want it hot as possible, then run it through elephant or L2 or something, let them take the peaks down another notch, and calibrate the output up to 0db. Added benefit is that if it gets sent for mastering, all you have to do is take off the maximizer and output the signal, and you're good to go.

As a side note, tho... I have read that it is better to output to -0.3db... the volume difference is not noticeable, but apparently some cd players will cause distortion at 0db, and it is possible to have intersample peaks that distort if you have samples that hit any higher.

Between waves api and L2, you can squeeze the life out of the track if you want to, but doing it this way, you will get the gainstaging right up until that point, and avoid the digital graininess that always gives away when someone is abusing a digital chain. If you have clipped ANYTHING ANYWHERE in the chain, it will simply sound bad... and some plugs don't work properly when pushed NEAR the top of their range.
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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I get what you mean, but waves API clips the output itself, if you use the make up gain...
#14
28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Quote:
I get what you mean, but waves API clips the output itself, if you use the make up gain...
I'm sorry but you are disregarding one of the most basic audio principles of "Gain structure". Make up gain is generally used for getting the same level as what you got in by using the bypass on your plug-in to achieve the same apparent loudness.
If you clip going in it is poor gain structure. If you clip going out poor gain structure. If you want more colouration from the effect then you can still mix lower but lower the threshold. This is the reason people talk about settings not gain.

If you need your mix louder add a brickwall at the end.
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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I use the 2500 plugin to shave of the peaks on the masterbus, works great for me!
I dont ever touch the make up gain..
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thumper View Post
If it sounds too hot it is.

If you like the results of driving the input a touch hot, go for it. There are no rules.

I don't use the 2500 plug as a 2bus comp, but I do use it to shave off some peaks on a vocal bus.

I seem to really dig it with the meters hitting about 4-5 db reduction, 10:1 ratio with fairly fast attack and release times.

I 'think' I have the threshold around the +4 area, usually, around 9 o'clock, dialed so it's right.

Just do what feels good to you bud...
What he said.

See my sig block.
#17
28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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True - there are no rules.
But clipping the input on the master bus? That's got to sound bad.
If you like some heat then why not instead add some sort of distortion plug? Try Bad Buss Mojo from Stillwell...thumbsup
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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I use it on my drum buss and just about everything but the master buss. I got huge sound and levels without clipping out of my drum buss with adding a parellel compression to it. Preffer the Waves SSL Master Comp on the 2 buss. Maybe try something different in the mix to get it where you want it and keep that 2 buss out of the red Vogengo Elephant is sometimes great for me to push it over a bit without clipping. Digital clipping into the red is bad! If you are going for a distortion kind of sound and that's why you are clipping try a saturation plug. A limiter sounds like what you want if you are playing the loudness war here. Like I suggested Voxengo Elephant is great imo for this and not expensive! You can bring the level up loud to the point of clipping without overdoing it, it does something nice to the bass it seems, close to the peak of distortion clipping sound and has a transient control. Also pretty transparent..
#19
28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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I disagree. There are rules.

Some can be ignored or manipulated with but digital clipping sounds bad, period. Everybody knows it. It's not a new thing. People have tried to involve it in productions but it still sounds like digital clipping.

I'm all for artistic choices, mistakes that sound good, things that "shouldn't" work but do, but if someone does not understand gain structure and is digitally clipping an input and then clipping the output with make up gain it is a recipe for disaster. What the OP will find is that if he/she uses correct Gain structure then compresses/limits again after (if the slammed sound is desired) then it will sound a heap better.

I implore the OP to investigate further. Once they see/hear the light/sound they will be happy.
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Some years ago, when I demoed the 2500, it was the analog switch which caused the plugin to clip. With analog mode off the API would put out 32 bit float above 0dbFS.

The question is:

Have Waves modeled analog clipping of the unit???

Perhaps someone can check this out.

Cheers!
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Most say compress then limit...If you go over to the master forum you will find the info you are asking pretty much on the first two pages. It's a debatable theoretical topic what to use and when but there is a method to it. I'm still reading up and trying to nail it even better myself, but I don't ever really have issues with it not being loud enough. I despise one big solid wave chunk
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdoelger View Post
Some years ago, when I demoed the 2500, it was the analog switch which caused the plugin to clip. With analog mode off the API would put out 32 bit float above 0dbFS.
Weird, I thought the analog switch just added low level white-noise...?
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fattsmellf View Post
Weird, I thought the analog switch just added low level white-noise...?
This AND the clipping thing. I'm prettysure it was the case.
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theBackwardsman View Post
I get what you mean, but waves API clips the output itself, if you use the make up gain...
No, you don't get what I mean at all.

If you are even asking about whether it is ok to clip the input, you have serious gainstaging problems that need to be addressed before you even get to the master buss. Unless you are taking a -6db or lower signal going INTO the master buss, and cranking it up with a gain plug to hit the api that hard, you have already overlooked several problems and likely had multiple things not work as well as the could before they ever got to the master buss.

I was under the same misconceptions a year ago, and I assure you, there IS a right answer in this case... and it's one where the question of clipping the input would never even come up. It's not just that you are doing nothing but hurting your audio by clipping the input at all ever... it's that if you are anywhere near that, you have already hurt your audio in other ways you are likely unaware of before it even hits the master buss.

The questions you are asking indicate a few things to me... and I would be willing to bet your channels are too hot, your busses are too hot, your channel compressors are not all working as well as they could be, etc...

If you did nothing different but to follow the gainstaging advice, and make it up with the final mastering plug, you would NOTICE an improvement in your mixes. I certainly did when I finally figured this stuff out.
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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It is best to keep some headroom but sometimes in the digital it's easy to forget that, when I'm getting too hot and see my plugs clipping I just throw a trim plugin before the buss plugin or if I'm really blazing you have to trim everything down a little, a VCA fader in PT works wonders.

Some of the gear emulating plugs are a little touchy.
#26
28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Do not clip your 2500's input unless you like a very unpleasing distortion in your mix.
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#27
28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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I know people who think they are so unique and just distort and clip everything in the digital realm..I try to tell them but they just say it's my art it's suppose to be like that and I like the noise it adds a cinematic effect and a urgency. yeah whatever haha ugh
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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First off, i didnt "ask if it was ok", of course I know its ****ing stupid, (alltough I prefer the sound of 2500 clipping over all limiter plugins I have ever tried, L2, Elephant, Pocket limiter, 2007, Timeworks etc. )

Im not the only one that has to ruin mixes cause clients wants it to sound like a ted jensen master so im just going for the lesser evil here..

But since it acts like a brickwall, even if you gain stage properly and dont clip the input at all, the make up gain will make the OUTPUT clip, I've always assumed thats the way its designed? unless im totally ******** and has missed something.
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theBackwardsman View Post
First off, i didnt "ask if it was ok", of course I know its ****ing stupid, (alltough I prefer the sound of 2500 clipping over all limiter plugins I have ever tried, L2, Elephant, Pocket limiter, 2007, Timeworks etc. )

Im not the only one that has to ruin mixes cause clients wants it to sound like a ted jensen master so im just going for the lesser evil here..

But since it acts like a brickwall, even if you gain stage properly and dont clip the input at all, the make up gain will make the OUTPUT clip, I've always assumed thats the way its designed? unless im totally ******** and has missed something.
I think there are other tools better suited for what you are trying to achieve.
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28th September 2010
Old 28th September 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CallMeAl View Post
You need to seriously re-evaluate your approach. You should NEVER be even close to clipping the input... nor ever even close to clipping on any of your busses.

You are confusing the hotness of the final mix... which can be determined at the very END of the chain... with what's going on throughout the chain.

Above advice was correct. Your recorded tracks should be peaking in most cases no higher than -6db or so. Your busses should be peaking no higher than -6db or so.

Your master buss up until the LAST plugin (not the waves api) should never reach -6db.
thumbsup Totally agree
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