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Looking for that Beatle compression... Condenser Microphones
Old 19th May 2015
  #91
Quote:
It's important to point out that the Beatles had 4 primary recording engineers in their career and each recorded them differently. Norman "Hurricane" Smith used a STC/Coles 4038 Ribbon Mic for an overhead, Geoff Emerick used very different sounding D19c mics for overheads and Geoff's mic set up changed over the years as he added and changed mics. Ken Scott used Geoff's basic set up but changed things up somewhat. Glen Johns took a totally different approach for Let It Be using a very different sounding Neumann U67 for an overhead. Also, the Beatles recorded in other studios besides Abbey Road for large parts of St. Peppper's, Magical Mystery Tour, the White Album, Let It Be and even a few songs from Abbey Road where not recorded in Abbey Road. Yet, the Beatles sounded basically the same no matter who was engineering or what studio they were at.
This post is exactly why I love this place.
Old 19th May 2015
  #92
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmikeperkins View Post
It's important to point out that the Beatles had 4 primary recording engineers in their career and each recorded them differently. Norman "Hurricane" Smith used a STC/Coles 4038 Ribbon Mic for an overhead, Geoff Emerick used very different sounding D19c mics for overheads and Geoff's mic set up changed over the years as he added and changed mics. Ken Scott used Geoff's basic set up but changed things up somewhat. Glen Johns took a totally different approach for Let It Be using a very different sounding Neumann U67 for an overhead. Also, the Beatles recorded in other studios besides Abbey Road for large parts of St. Peppper's, Magical Mystery Tour, the White Album, Let It Be and even a few songs from Abbey Road where not recorded in Abbey Road. Yet, the Beatles sounded basically the same no matter who was engineering or what studio they were at. As much as we Gearslutz want to believe that if we just had the same recording gear as the Beatles we could somehow sound like them, it's not so simple. As was pointed out earlier you can get lot closer to their sound using the same instruments and amplifiers than you can using their recording chain. But of course like any true Gearslut, I would love to have a Fairchild 660, the modded Altec compressor, the Redd mic pres and everything else they used but it would not make me sound like the Beatles.
Nice post, but "large parts of Sgt pepper were recorded outside of Abbey Road"? I've read a lot of stuff on the Beatles, and that's new to me. I'm aware of Fixing a Hole being done mostly in another studio, and maybe the string arrangement for She's Leaving Home, but I always thought that album was mostly studio 2.
Old 19th May 2015
  #93
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Sounds Great's Avatar
 

Badfinger also had that Beatle compression:

Old 19th May 2015
  #94
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vincentvangogo's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by unitymusic View Post
Nice post, but "large parts of Sgt pepper were recorded outside of Abbey Road"? I've read a lot of stuff on the Beatles, and that's new to me. I'm aware of Fixing a Hole being done mostly in another studio, and maybe the string arrangement for She's Leaving Home, but I always thought that album was mostly studio 2.
And I think most of the other stuff that was recorded elsewhere was still mixed at Abbey Road.
Old 19th May 2015
  #95
Gear Guru
Geoff Emerick did Badfingers album after the Beatles. Wasn't most of the Beatles stuff recorded at EMI and Abby Road was later after the White Album? Sgt Peppers was in the Big Studio and The White album was in a smaller stage which is why the albums sound different. I thought Abby Road was built out when the Beatles left EMI. Lennon had that crazy guy "Magic Dave" in tow....
Old 19th May 2015
  #96
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doorknocker's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ardis View Post
Geoff Emerick did Badfingers album after the Beatles. Wasn't most of the Beatles stuff recorded at EMI and Abby Road was later after the White Album? Sgt Peppers was in the Big Studio and The White album was in a smaller stage which is why the albums sound different. I thought Abby Road was built out when the Beatles left EMI. Lennon had that crazy guy "Magic Dave" in tow....
I think you got several things mixed up here.

The Beatles practically always recorded in Studio 2 at EMI (it wasn't officially called 'Abbey Road' till much later) and not in the big room that was mostly used for orchestral stuff.

Few Beatles sessions took place outside of EMI: Some overdub session in Paris, some sessions at Trident (Hey Jude) and Apple . As for the 'Let It Be' sessions, it was Magic ALEX that promised to build them a studio inside their Apple headquarters but he was some kind of charlatan who had no idea about studio construction or recording. There was a story that he only could be stopped in the last minute before tearing out a primary structure. I guess the drugs played a part too.

To my knowledge, the White Album was entirely done at EMI/Abbey Road.

Check 'Recording the Beatles' for all the info, it's a great book.

Last edited by doorknocker; 19th May 2015 at 06:30 PM..
Old 19th May 2015
  #97
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Talking of which, I happened to stumble on this earlier which Magic Alex (aka Dave) supposedly had in his collection and was recorded at Regent Sounds (where they did Fixing A Hole.) It only ten hits when I viewed it, so not sure why it's suddenly appeared.

Old 19th May 2015
  #98
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doorknocker's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by vincentvangogo View Post
Talking of which, I happened to stumble on this earlier which Magic Alex (aka Dave) supposedly had in his collection and was recorded at Regent Sounds (where they did Fixing A Hole.) It only ten hits when I viewed it, so not sure why it's suddenly appeared.

Thanks for that info! I just wondered how the Beatles would fit into such a tiny space as Regent Sound but I realize that it wasn't the original studio on Denmark Street where the Stones did some of their earliest stuff but a second - and bigger - studio on Tottenham Court Road.

Some info : History - Regent Sounds The Fender & Gretsch Specialists
Old 19th May 2015
  #99
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Virgil's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by vincentvangogo View Post
Talking of which, I happened to stumble on this earlier which Magic Alex (aka Dave) supposedly had in his collection and was recorded at Regent Sounds (where they did Fixing A Hole.) It only ten hits when I viewed it, so not sure why it's suddenly appeared.

It could be them. Sounds similar to Fixing a Hole. Maybe they were warming up.
Old 19th May 2015
  #100
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vincentvangogo's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Virgil View Post
It could be them. Sounds similar to Fixing a Hole. Maybe they were warming up.
I'm almost certain it's them. Maybe the reason Lewisohn et al never mentioned it is because it wasn't from Abbey Road and didn't get documented.
Old 20th May 2015
  #101
Gear Head
 

Fake. Doesn't sound like the Beatles. more like the Rutles sing over Pet Sounds chord progressions.
Old 21st May 2015
  #102
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nickknack View Post
Emulate is one thing but to actually capture the source is another.

If you want that Beatles sound then sound like the Beatles.

EMI and Chandler have that tone if you want but you are going to have to spend more than a few K to get it.

Starting off with a good HW preamp and compressor is the best starting point.
Plug ins can only get you there part of the way.

Better off first with the HW to take you 90-95 % and then polish it off with some SW for the final 5%.

You will have that AHA moment once you hear it done with HW.

My opinion only and others may have differrent idea .

Its all up to your budget.

Cheers
Totally Agree on this point. Software Plug In Modelling of certain functions such as EQ and Reverberation with All the networks of filtering can indeed get very, very close in 2015, though with Programme Dependant Compression and Limiting, well..... That is still a mighty long Bridge to cover with coding! I have no doubt certain emulations in 2015 are possible, just not cost effective in their possibilities so, that Compression plug in would be $2000 bucks as it stands!

Hardware still has the dimensional ability, alongside the programme dependant threshold Schemes, that Software simply can't touch! People wonder why and if $4000-$8000 buck units really DO add that extra 25% and it's only when you're equiped with that Kind of Hardware from Pre to Eq to Comp/Lim to Mastering Recorder (Analog 1/2" or DXD) that you "Hear" that Difference thrust into another $5K Microphone and, suddenly you're hearing a signal chain with Deep clarity and filled with top of the line components, does that cheap Motu, Focurite or even Apogee Convertor to DAW interface hit you like a truck on the face on the freeway and suddenly the quest for that extra 20-25% in Every Aspect of you're Recording chain start to become crucial.

Then again .......Ive heard some Amazing songs written and Recorded into an IPad with GarageBand - and some seriously - Horrid crap that has been given full grade Songwriting treatment that then has gone through $30,000 buck Audio chains, and nothing saves a "Bad Song" !
Simple as that!

In the end......No matter How Good the Audio Gear, it's worth Absolute Zero without great Songwriting and Arrangemt, let alone great Voices.

The Beatles had pretty much the triple threat of. A. Great Recording & Engineers, B. Great Material and C. Great Takent in the band between the Fab Four!

Last edited by TheLastByte; 21st May 2015 at 08:26 PM..
Old 21st May 2015
  #103
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by nickknack View Post
Emulate is one thing but to actually capture the source is another.

If you want that Beatles sound then sound like the Beatles.

EMI and Chandler have that tone if you want but you are going to have to spend more than a few K to get it.

Starting off with a good HW preamp and compressor is the best starting point.
Plug ins can only get you there part of the way.

Better off first with the HW to take you 90-95 % and then polish it off with some SW for the final 5%.

You will have that AHA moment once you hear it done with HW.

My opinion only and others may have differrent idea .

Its all up to your budget.

Cheers
Totally Agree on this point. Software Plug In Modelling of certain functions such as EQ and Reverberation with All the networks of filtering can indeed get very, very close in 2015, though with Programme Dependant Compression and Limiting, well..... That is still a mighty long Bridge to cover with coding! I have no doubt certain emulations in 2015 are possible, just not cost effective in their possibilities so, that Compression plug in would be $2000 bucks as it stands!

Hardware still has the dimensional ability, alongside the programme dependant threshold Schemes, that Software simply can't touch! People wonder why and if $4000-$8000 buck units really DO add that extra 25% and it's only when you're equiped with that Kind of Hardware from Pre to Eq to Comp/Lim to Mastering Recorder (Analog 1/2" or DXD) that you "Hear" that Difference thrust into another $5K Microphone and, suddenly you're hearing a signal chain with Deep clarity and filled with top of the line components, does that cheap Motu, Focurite or even Apogee Convertor to DAW interface hit you like a truck on the face on the freeway and suddenly the quest for that extra 20-25% in Every Aspect of you're Recording chain start to become crucial.

Then again .......Ive heard some Amazing songs written and Recorded into an IPad with GarageBand - and some seriously - Horrid crap that has been given full grade Songwriting treatment that then has gone through $30,000 buck Audio chains, and nothing saves a "Bad Song" !
Simple as that!

In the end......No matter How Good the Audio Gear, it's worth Absaloute Zero without great Songwriting and Arrangement, let alone great Voices aidding to that the Mojo of the Beatles Having Alll
Three!
Old 23rd May 2015
  #104
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chainrule View Post
talk about amateur ... putting a mic under a tom?
Ringo's drums always sounded absolutely horrible, now maybe we know why.... ?? Did they not know how to mic a kit back then??
It looks like they only have a mic under the snare too and no mic on top head...bizarre
From Geoff Emerick's book, page 149:

Quote:
Because John and Paul felt so strongly that the drums be featured on this song [A Day In The Life], I decided to experiment sonically as well. We were looking for a thicker, more tonal quality, so I suggested that Ringo tune his toms really low, making the skins really slack, and I also added a lot of low end at the mixing console. That made them sound almost like timpani, but I still felt there was more I could do to make his playing stand out.

During the making of Revolver, I had removed the front skin from Ringo's bass drum and everyone was pleased with the resultant sound, so I decided to extend that principle and take off the bottom heads from the tom-toms as well, miking them from underneath.

...

It took a lot of work and effort, but that's one drum sound I was extremely proud of, and Ringo ... loved it too.
Old 23rd May 2015
  #105
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yummerz View Post
From Geoff Emerick's book, page 149:
But who is this Geoff Emerick, and who is this Ringo character? Certainly Chainrule must be right.
Old 25th November 2015
  #106
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adam_f's Avatar
Just because the pic is so awesome: Wade & the team - the first Chandler Limited EMI Abbey Road Studios RS124s leaving the factory...

Old 20th January 2016
  #107
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by chainrule View Post
Always thought that was a terrible drum sound. The hi-hats sounds too metallic. The drums sounds are like cardboard... too much 400hz or whatever . The lead guitar on that song was actually not that bad comparatively to their perennial thin guitar tone on their other albums. They finally learn how to get good guitar tone, then they break up...?? go figure.

It's just mind boggling to think they had all that gear and they could block out months to record and they couldn't make a big clean sounding professional sounding record.

IMO they not only overused compression but they didn't know how to set it properly. Everything is so squashed. No dynamics. Also it often had a really bad "ring" to it that had a weird timbre. Also the attack/release pulse is often not in time with the groove... I suppose they were still learning back then.

But I agree it is opinion, a matter of taste. However I do feel that there are some fundamental technical issues.
Lots of people think it sounds amazing. Me included. I think Beatles drums sound way better and more exciting the the vast majority or boring modern drums. It is taste but you are making ridiculous assumptions that they didn't know what they were doing. They made an artistic choice to sound that way. I personally love that choice
Old 20th January 2016
  #108
Here you go.
Fairchild 670

On sale this week for $45K

Last edited by Waltz Mastering; 20th January 2016 at 02:57 PM..
Old 21st January 2016
  #109
Gear Guru
 
Sounds Great's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Waltz Mastering View Post
Here you go.
Fairchild 670

On sale this week for $45K
Forget it, he only has one. Unless I can find a matched pair, I'm not interested.
Old 24th May 2016
  #110
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rolf Ebitsch View Post
Hello Miles, Adam and Matt,

sounds great !

'The Comforter' chorus sounds like a bit like 'Faith No More'... but in a good way

R.
Thanks! Kinda reminds me of a funky Rage Against the Machine as well.
Old 25th May 2016
  #111
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Hamburg58's Avatar
 

Beatles compression? Here ya go. Credit to Chandler for making an incredible product! It does a lot but you have to play with it. It's not a plug in and go compressor. You have to find what works for you. I'll say the multiple attack times really beat the hell out of the Henson units I've tried in the past.
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