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ITB vs. console summing test Consoles
Old 23rd April 2018
  #61
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoundBadge View Post
was at the Sony Streisand scoring stage Thursday doing a soundtrack VR thing for Incredibles 2.
96 input 88r,full orchestra/big band all live cues to picture.
a gazzilion inputs,loads of external pres,plus vr cameras and ambeo mics.
sounded fkking spectacular.
the good old daze.
Good old days, that are about to disappear as well. Six out of LA's nine scoring stages have closed, among others things because LA musicians demand royalties, which doesn't happen anywhere else, including London! If the Movie makes any money, tracking in LA can cost MANY times more than with the London S.O. at Abbey Road!
And in places like CZ the whole thing is several times cheaper than London. The Rudolfinum in Prague actually installed a Duality a few years ago due to increase in film scoring.

Outside of scoring, look at the charts. Anything that makes money is all EDM or celebrity-Pop, for which you don't need more than a laptop and just one decent mic and interface, for both tracking and mixing. And tracking takes place at the producers' LA home, not at a regular studio anymore- same with mixing, at the A-list Mixer home ITB.

Everyone I know prefers OTB and an SSL or similar large console. Be it due to sound, familiarity, ergonomics, tactile feedback, whatever. Problem is,
the way projects go these days, the old way of producing music is no longer feasible.

Tools were developed to serve an industry, after all. Industry changes, tools must as well. Sign o' Times.

Last edited by jindrich; 24th April 2018 at 12:50 AM..
Old 24th April 2018
  #62
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crufty's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jindrich View Post
Good old days, that are about to disappear as well.

...

Tools were developed to serve an industry, after all. Industry changes, tools must as well. Sign o' Times.
indeed...

was listening to a jazz vocalist who saying she would have killed it in the 40s but in the 60s? had to sing pop to make ends meet after rock / beatles took over

kinda crazy to think that way ‘beatles took my gig man’...
Old 25th April 2018
  #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Randolph View Post
Maybe you uploaded 24/96, but what's playing is...

Code:
Channels       : 2
Sample Rate    : 44100
Precision      : 16-bit
Duration       : 00:00:42.77 = 1885981 samples = 3207.45 CDDA sectors
File Size      : 684k
Bit Rate       : 128k
Sample Encoding: MPEG audio (layer I, II or III)
128k mp3 at 44.1khz.

You may want to use something like dropbox or google drive in the future if you want to do a serious listening test.
Oh, fer ****'s sake. I tried dropbox originally, but I can't set up a share with everybody option for download, and their audio playback actually sounds worse than soundcloud.

If you know how to make the download available to everybody, lemme know. But it just goes to show, when it goes to mp3, you REALLY can't hear a difference. LOL.
Old 26th April 2018
  #64
Gear Addict
 

The panning of the tambourine is a dead giveaway. I seem to find the ITB version more "impressive", and the OTB version more focused. Hard to say which one I would prefer in long-term listening.
Old 27th April 2018
  #65
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Drumsound's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
The same two bars repeated. Panning and levels of some stuff is slightly varied, so it's not an exact duplicate, but I tried to match gain. It's not always repeated ABABAB. There's a head fake in there. It should be obvious, unless your listening environment sucks.

Mix was broken out of the Apogee Symphony onto 29 channels of the MTA 980 with Inward Connections discrete class A stereo bus, run through some Western Electric 111C transformers -> NTI EQ3 -> Dramastic Obsidian -> Apogee Symphony.

ITB has ATR 102 on the master bus -> Apogee Symphony -> 111C transformers -> NTI EQ3 -> Obsidian -> Manley Vari-Mu -> Apogee Symphony

Now, I can definitely hear a difference in tonality. In some ways I prefer one, in some ways I prefer another. Is the difference the Vari-MU and the ATR plus, or is it the TL072s and circuitry of the console? Whatever the difference is, I could certainly do a little tweaking and get them sounding closer, if that were my goal. I just happened to have both prints handy, and thought I'd share the results, so you guys could argue about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. But once again, I don't find that one is superior to the other sonically in such a way that I need to do one in order to get that special sound. I'll save my opinion for later, so as not to influence anybody.

But I can tell you this: With the amount of recalls I am having to do for this client, I certainly prefer one methodology over the other, and one of those gives me much better recalls, and takes less time to recall. Running tones through the console, and setting everything to unity gain is a pain in the ass, and these pots are not the friendliest. I don't see enough of a benefit in the console version to continue with that method.

File is 24/96. Enjoy.

Summing Test by J.J. Blair | Free Listening on SoundCloud
Hey JJ. I have a routing question about your method. When your working in the box, you obviously have a master fader with the 102 plugin, but how are you integrating the hardware and printing the mix?
Old 27th April 2018
  #66
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jjblair's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drumsound View Post
Hey JJ. I have a routing question about your method. When your working in the box, you obviously have a master fader with the 102 plugin, but how are you integrating the hardware and printing the mix?
I don't insert. I just come out the DAC, run through my chain, and then print that. This went back into the Symphony, but I'll be printing to DSD to send to mastering.
Old 27th April 2018
  #67
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To do a proper A/B you should have two separate files preferably of a the actual song instead of loops, (which get really tedious)
Old 27th April 2018
  #68
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jjblair's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcgood View Post
To do a proper A/B you should have two separate files preferably of a the actual song instead of loops, (which get really tedious)
Yeah, that's why I said this is nonscientific. I'm also not giving you guys a track from an album that hasn't been released yet! Duh.

But I disagree. When I'm doing A/B tests, I can tell way more from hearing the same portion over, so there's fewer variables. Repetition is essential for hearing differences accurately.
Old 27th April 2018
  #69
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
Exactly. The difference are not virtually nothing, but they are not significant enough IMHO. I am not saying that ITB mixing is superior to OTB mixing, or vice versa. I'll do a great mix on either. But good luck doing recalls on an OTB mix in anywhere close to the amount of time that even simply do unity gain summing on a console requires.

And I can't even say that the records I mixed OTB sound superior to the records I mixed ITB. Early on in my ITB process, I could say that, but no longer.
I agree with you on this, there are differences but it's subjective on which is really better. In the end the most important thing is, did you have a great take from the artist.

As a high end project studio owner, for me it's just more fun and rewarding using hardware for certain applications on a song. That excitement, motivation of moving knobs and seeing meters inspires me more. I also find I can get the sound I want faster with hardware. But there are times when time is limited, so you add the plug in, you get a sound you want, hit the save button and you done. No one would ever say, oh you didn't use the hardware on this track, I can hear the differences.

One reason I purchased the SSl X Rack is for the recall capability on it. After using it on a track, sometimes I will bounce the track and add the new track with the SSL on the song. Then mute and hide the original track. Other times I will just leave the hardware as an insert on a track, type in the Cubase Notes on a track which saved number I used on the SSl X Rack so I can go back to the song later and recall the settings pretty quickly. That's just my way of working.
Old 28th April 2018
  #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
Yeah, that's why I said this is nonscientific. I'm also not giving you guys a track from an album that hasn't been released yet! Duh.

But I disagree. When I'm doing A/B tests, I can tell way more from hearing the same portion over, so there's fewer variables. Repetition is essential for hearing differences accurately.
Also, you must compare actual wave files at the native resolution they where recorded in on a daw set up for proper A/B.

Trying to compare files on Soundcloud is really silly and pointless..
Old 28th April 2018
  #71
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bcgood View Post
Also, you must compare actual wave files at the native resolution they where recorded in on a daw set up for proper A/B.

Trying to compare files on Soundcloud is really silly and pointless..
You obviously missed the three previous posts, didn’t you?
Old 28th April 2018
  #72
Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
BTW, the second measure is OTB. Listen to that sound, and identify which of the following measures were OTB.

Personally, I felt like the OTB was a little more forward in the 3kish area, and a little crunchier. Less warm, for me. I believe its the TL072 architecture of the console. You either like that sound more or you don't. Horses for courses. When I get my 5088, who knows how I'd feel about the same process.
They both sound great. Weirdly I like the second measure as it feels like the bass and groove pumps a tiny bit more. The organ is more distant but I quite like that depth too.
I believe it switches for 5&6 and then switches back for the last 2 rounds.
Old 28th April 2018
  #73
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
You obviously missed the three previous posts, didn’t you?

Why didn't you upload the wave files to Google Drive?


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Old 28th April 2018
  #74
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jjblair's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcgood View Post
Why didn't you upload the wave files to Google Drive?


Google Drive - Cloud Storage & File Backup for Photos, Docs & More
Because first, I didn’t realize that sound cloud was going to convert into MP3 from 2496, and second, I don’t use Google Drive, so I wouldn’t have even thought about it. That’s why.
Old 28th April 2018
  #75
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Have you considered using a summing box? This would eliminate the time to recall the console to unity. Adds a little bit extra vs just a mix bus chain.
Old 28th April 2018
  #76
Quote:
Originally Posted by jdtrbn View Post
The panning of the tambourine is a dead giveaway. I seem to find the ITB version more "impressive", and the OTB version more focused. Hard to say which one I would prefer in long-term listening.
Yes agreed. It switches sides.
Old 28th April 2018
  #77
Gear Addict
 

Hi J.J.,

On SoundCloud, select Edit, on one of the tabs, the last tab if I recall, there is an option to make the track downloadable.

That being said, I have always made my files downloadable, especially comparisons, and can share that very few take the extra time to download and load to a DAW.

Personally, I will always download if the option is available. I think it is important to spend time listening closely over a period of time vs seconds clicking through online tracks. If it is a comparison as an important element of a decision, I will play it back through various parts of my chain which adds context.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason rocks View Post
If I was going to create a pro studio now I would purchase the SSl AWS 948 console along with an X Rack of silver compressors. I think it's one of the best setups if you want a analog mixer/controller. It looks great, work flow, sound, and recall are all good.
I would also have several Rupert Neve pre's, Eq's as several Manley pieces for different colors to choose from.

Everyone has different needs, wants, and preferences. What is best for one person is not necessarily the best for another. But that would be my ultimate setup without spending the money for a Duality mixer. I want a studio to also be fun and let's face it, plug in's are not as fun to use as quality hardware.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
Oh, fer ****'s sake. I tried dropbox originally, but I can't set up a share with everybody option for download, and their audio playback actually sounds worse than soundcloud.

If you know how to make the download available to everybody, lemme know. But it just goes to show, when it goes to mp3, you REALLY can't hear a difference. LOL.
Old 28th April 2018
  #78
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Thanks for this thread @jjblair When this record comes out, I'm buying it.
Old 28th April 2018
  #79
I really can't tell the difference.... it all sounds good...
Old 28th April 2018
  #80
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jjblair's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyc View Post
Have you considered using a summing box? This would eliminate the time to recall the console to unity. Adds a little bit extra vs just a mix bus chain.
I think you missed the point. Also, I believe I addressed this. I have a something box made of vintage Langevin AM16s and the Inward Connection bus. The whole point of this thread is that I do not see a clear advantage to summing outside of the box.

As I said, I wasn’t even doing a scientific test here. I simply had done one mix on the console, so that the producer could move faders . It had nothing to do with the sound. Then after we decided that I should be the one doing all the fader moves, I went back to inside the box, and saw little to no benefit sonically of going outside the box, once again, as I proved to myself many years ago.
Old 28th April 2018
  #81
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jjblair's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by StevenLMorgan View Post
Hi J.J.,

On SoundCloud, select Edit, on one of the tabs, the last tab if I recall, there is an option to make the track downloadable.

That being said, I have always made my files downloadable, especially comparisons, and can share that very few take the extra time to download and load to a DAW.

Personally, I will always download if the option is available. I think it is important to spend time listening closely over a period of time vs seconds clicking through online tracks. If it is a comparison as an important element of a decision, I will play it back through various parts of my chain which adds context.
Hmmmmm. I thought i had. Thanks. I haven’t posted anything in a forum for downloading for so long, I don’t know what all the kids are doing these days. LOL.
Old 28th April 2018
  #82
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jjblair's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drumhead57 View Post
Thanks for this thread @jjblair When this record comes out, I'm buying it.
Thanks. If you look at my Instagram, it’s the record I was making in Nashville. I don’t know when it’s coming out, but you will figure it out. LOL.
Old 28th April 2018
  #83
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
I think you missed the point. Also, I believe I addressed this. I have a something box made of vintage Langevin AM16s and the Inward Connection bus. The whole point of this thread is that I do not see a clear advantage to summing outside of the box.

As I said, I wasn’t even doing a scientific test here. I simply had done one mix on the console, so that the producer could move faders . It had nothing to do with the sound. Then after we decided that I should be the one doing all the fader moves, I went back to inside the box, and saw little to no benefit sonically of going outside the box, once again, as I proved to myself many years ago.
Missing the point is certainly possible. My impression of the thread was summing was minimally beneficially but not worth the recall time. If you hear no benefit then a different story.

For me I have 16 channels of summing feeding the obsidian compressor, haven't been able to replicate this ITB. I've done the scientific test many times, putting 2 channels into the summing box vs 16 channels, so everything passes through the same electronics. I prefer the 16 channels every time. The summing box does change the sound though, so putting it on after doing an ITB mix not always beneficial.
Old 29th April 2018
  #84
7+1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoundBadge View Post
was at the Sony Streisand scoring stage Thursday doing a soundtrack VR thing for Incredibles 2.
96 input 88r,full orchestra/big band all live cues to picture.
a gazzilion inputs,loads of external pres,plus vr cameras and ambeo mics.
sounded fkking spectacular.
the good old daze.
Nothing beats that room Hunter!
Attached Thumbnails
ITB vs. console summing test-hipstamaticphoto-542429085.671386.jpg  
Old 29th April 2018
  #85
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyc View Post
Missing the point is certainly possible. My impression of the thread was summing was minimally beneficially but not worth the recall time. If you hear no benefit then a different story.

For me I have 16 channels of summing feeding the obsidian compressor, haven't been able to replicate this ITB. I've done the scientific test many times, putting 2 channels into the summing box vs 16 channels, so everything passes through the same electronics. I prefer the 16 channels every time. The summing box does change the sound though, so putting it on after doing an ITB mix not always beneficial.
Summing through the Dangerous provides a more open sound where there is a sparkle and a little more separation. The difference is not big but anytime I want a mix to have that touch, I sum through my Dangerous D Box.
Old 29th April 2018
  #86
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
Thanks. If you look at my Instagram, it’s the record I was making in Nashville. I don’t know when it’s coming out, but you will figure it out. LOL.
Wow, very cool. Looking forward to that.

What I hear is a slightly fatter guitar tone on one of the A/Bs, particularly when the player comes back down and hits the F# on the second cycle in.

Last edited by Drumhead57; 29th April 2018 at 07:54 AM.. Reason: It's late, and I'm tired
Old 30th April 2018
  #87
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason rocks View Post
Summing through the Dangerous provides a more open sound where there is a sparkle and a little more separation. The difference is not big but anytime I want a mix to have that touch, I sum through my Dangerous D Box.
Yeah. That's the sound of the Dangerous circuit laying a fingerprint on the mix. The sound of the Dangerous isn't really my thing, but that's just my personal taste. Lots of people love it. But from what I've read about the 2-Bus, most of the flavor is happening after the summing. The circuitry before the summing is just about providing as clean a signal as possible, with minimal loss, before the summing op amps.
Old 30th April 2018
  #88
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason rocks View Post
Summing through the Dangerous provides a more open sound where there is a sparkle and a little more separation. The difference is not big but anytime I want a mix to have that touch, I sum through my Dangerous D Box.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jjblair View Post
Yeah. That's the sound of the Dangerous circuit laying a fingerprint on the mix. The sound of the Dangerous isn't really my thing, but that's just my personal taste. Lots of people love it. But from what I've read about the 2-Bus, most of the flavor is happening after the summing. The circuitry before the summing is just about providing as clean a signal as possible, with minimal loss, before the summing op amps.
Would be interesting to compare a single (appropriately gainstaged) stereo feed to the Dangerous, versus the stem approach, to see if there’s much between them - ie if the summing or the buss processing is making the difference.
Old 30th April 2018
  #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
Would be interesting to compare a single (appropriately gainstaged) stereo feed to the Dangerous, versus the stem approach, to see if there’s much between them - ie if the summing or the buss processing is making the difference.
This is what I was getting at earlier. I've done this exact test with the Dangerous and other units. Always prefer the sound of multiple signals summed over just a stereo feed into the same unit.

The more channels the better too, i. e. 16 sounds better than 8.
Old 30th April 2018
  #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
Would be interesting to compare a single (appropriately gainstaged) stereo feed to the Dangerous, versus the stem approach, to see if there’s much between them - ie if the summing or the buss processing is making the difference.
I guess that would depend on the headroom of the individual stereo pairs. That info I got was from the SOS review and quotes from the designer, btw.
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