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PT Ruined The New Queens Of The Stone Age Control Surfaces
Old 4th September 2002
  #91
I like the transient 'shock' / delivery of digital for drums, or in other words, I dont like it's slight disapearance on tape, so

digital
digital
digital

BTW 96k mix mastering at Sony Studios, London this afternoon was sweeeeet!

Ray Staff rocks!

Old 4th September 2002
  #92
I like the transient 'shock' / delivery of digital for drums, or in other words, I dont like it's slight disapearance on tape, so

digital
digital
digital

BTW 96k mix mastering at Sony Studios, London this afternoon was sweeeeet!

Ray Staff rocks!

Old 4th September 2002
  #93
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by jon


Yep!

Guys, all things being equal and with high-end gear, if you had to choose between tracking digital and mixing analog, or tracking analog and mixing digital...which would you choose?
i would have to pick track analog and mix digital. i would also have the analog tracks transferred IMMEDIATELY to digital as soon as they are laid down.



as for tape compression viz digital productions. i find that multiple compressors inline work pretty well... but honestly, i dont really TRY to do anything to get an "analog" sound... i just get a sound digitally that i like. same thing i would do working with analog. if its not right coming back out the monitors, i go fix the source, then the mic, then the rest of the chain until i am happy with the resulting sound. i dont get so caught up in what medium i am using. the main thing i like of digital over analog is really the quickness of working with it. makes session go so much smoother.

digital vs. analog you are basically playing a game of inches now days that NO ONE but engineers even gives two ****s about. the MAJORITY of the time i am keyed into the performance over all else.
Old 4th September 2002
  #94
One with big hooves
 
Jay Kahrs's Avatar
Quote:
Originally posted by jon

Guys, all things being equal and with high-end gear, if you had to choose between tracking digital and mixing analog, or tracking analog and mixing digital...which would you choose?
Tough call. Probably track digital to Radar or use DP as a big multi-track so I can clean out guitar noise and junk, then mix to analog at 15ips.
Old 4th September 2002
  #95
Lives for gear
 
C.Lambrechts's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by jon
AJ, I know you're not looking for it, but since you mentioned it, how do you get the sound of tape compression with digital...

Jon,


how about the oposite .... get the sound of digital with analog tape.

I have done a recording of a Steinway D with a Soprano just before the summer. On ProTools HD at 96K.

NO WAY you get an even remotely close sound with tape.


I think bottom line in this whole discussion should be that digital and analog have become equal partners in this business. They both have their pro's and con's ....

We are definately at the point that a High Quality DAW setup can compete with a high quality analog setup.

The time has come where it doesn't matter anymore wether you track analog and mix digital or wether you keep it analog or digital all the way. It comes down to the people using it to their best possibilities that makes good sounding records now. It sure can be done your way .... but it also can be done the DAW way. No doubt about that.



Tape compression or not .... it has become a matter of taste : drums can kick ass recorded digitally too.
Old 4th September 2002
  #96
Lives for gear
 
C.Lambrechts's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by jon


Yep!

Guys, all things being equal and with high-end gear, if you had to choose between tracking digital and mixing analog, or tracking analog and mixing digital...which would you choose?

For my own stuff. Record digital and mix digital. An occassional analog recording would be done (I use it for drums and sometimes bass only) if needed but tranfered to the DAW to add with the rest of the tracks.


For Client based stuff : their choice .... track digital or analog ... whatever pleases them best. Believe it or not. Some people just THINK it sounds better because they see a huge tape machine rolling with VU's on them. Some of them wouldn't even hear the difference if you would stick their nose in it either. But that's not why we do it. If a client feels like analog is his thing ... I will record analog for him.
Old 4th September 2002
  #97
I personally listen to a lot of records that were mixed by Andy Wallace, CLA and TLA...it's basically the kind of music and mixing I'm into...


Hi Jon,

Just a couple of comments, a lot of the things you are saying now, is what the Neve guys were saying back in the 80's when the SSL's started becoming the norm. I knew the Alge bros then(they were working out of Unique Recording Studios) and I could tell you what seperated those guys back then, wasn't the fact that they mixed on SSL's(which they are two of the biggest proponents) but that they were super talented at just that mixing. Tom had a knack for getting songs to "bang". Andy while he was here in NYC back then, worked on everything. It just happened that the SSL was their weapon of choice(also i will ad that Bob Clearmountain helped make it even more popular). None of the guys above mix alot on 9000J, because they break up to fast when you push them hard, unlike an old E(my preference for mixing rock and rap). But I remember a lot of complaints from the older Neve guys, who couldn't get the SSL to "sing". Also it didn't help that early on, a lot of the SSL's would over heat and break down. I like SSL's, and my ears are use to that sound. But I believe with all of the young Jedi's growing up in Pro Tools, that sound will become the standard for tomorrow. I think HD has helped Pro Tools stepup to the plate. It sounds good, with lots of tracks and processing power. Now adays i have the luxury of working both, SSL and Pro Tool mixes(once in a while a Neve VR session thrown in). I will tell u, with all of the label budgets getting squeezed, i've gotten a lot of requests just to do the Pro Tools thing, and not bother booking the SSL room. Of course i've worked hard to get my mixes to "bang" on Pro Tools, and I have ton of outboard to run tracks through. So i do believe, that if it is your weapon of choice it is possible.
Old 4th September 2002
  #98
Lives for gear
 
Henchman's Avatar
Youw want great sounding digital/ Get a ****in' Fairlight.
Old 4th September 2002
  #99
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally posted by Jules
I like the transient 'shock' / delivery of digital for drums, or in other words, I dont like it's slight disapearance on tape
seeing that it seems pretty much all transients are removed in mixing and mastering, are you sure that's valid? drums seem to be everyone's most common 'track to tape then xfer' instrument...

what in hell is Dave Grohl doing on QOTSA? i hope they didn't pull a Masters of Reality move and lose the better 1/2 of the band after making one decent album...
Old 5th September 2002
  #100
Lives for gear
 
RKrizman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by jon
[
From your comments, it sounds like you guys tried analog and ran across a poorly-aligned machine (don't let the studio assistants align them, do it yourself). Alignment makes a big difference. [/B]
Jon, I think you're being a wee bit condescending here. Analog isn't something I've "tried", it's something I've used extensively for the last 25 years, occasionally even on properly aligned machines. Believe it or not, they have them all over L.A., and guess what, most assistants I've worked with know how to do a proper alignment.

I'd also say that a bump at 55hz and a bump at 110hz could in fact be muddy if you had the sounds like you wanted them going in, especially if you have a lot of low end instruments, like a kick, bass, piano left hand and some low strings. Or it could fill it out nicely, if you've allowed for that to be the final piece of the sonic puzzle.

That being said, I usually prefer the sound of drums on tape but bass guitar on digital. But mileage varies daily.

-Rick
Old 5th September 2002
  #101
Lives for gear
 
RKrizman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by jon
[B]

That he was pleased given what he had to work with has little to do with what he prefers. In a "ProTools studio" there was no choice. (Alsihad comes from "All's I had").

/B]
It's just an anecdote, to suggest that maybe it's not such a big deal to him like it is to so many people here. But who knows?

And FYI, "Alsihad" was something written on a fez that Fletcher slightly misread somewhere and just thought it was a funny sounding word.

-Rick
Old 5th September 2002
  #102
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
jon's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by thethrillfactor
But I believe with all of the young Jedi's growing up in Pro Tools, that sound will become the standard for tomorrow. I think HD has helped Pro Tools stepup to the plate. It sounds good, with lots of tracks and processing power. Now adays i have the luxury of working both, SSL and Pro Tool mixes.
Interesting points.

FWIW Mixing in PT was my weapon of choice for several years...but serving in the ranks of the dark Alsihadi didn't sound good enough...gave up the blaster in exchange for a light saber and converted over to the analog side of the force......to fight alongside a rag-tag force of true believers against the evil MOA empress of ugly flatness and her many digitis-infected minions and hordes. heh

Seriously, could someone please say what Digi has done -- concretely -- to improve the sound of mixing in HD over mixing in MixPlus...other than the high-track-count chip thing and 96k plugins? I mean, isn't that kinda like putting a band-aid on a really deep wound? The problem is fundamental.
Old 5th September 2002
  #103
96k & 192k operation...

I have heard both, it helps bring missing 3D depth to the soundstage & gives potential for classier HF 'sizzle' and more pleasant, lower lows. Both previously thought to be the bastion of analog tape.

Primarily the higher sample rates and the '2nd time round' for plug in folks. Gone customer 'wonder' at plug in pretty graphics and in it's place is customer insistance / urging for preservation of sound quality.
Old 5th September 2002
  #104
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
jon's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by RKrizman


That being said, I usually prefer the sound of drums on tape but bass guitar on digital. But mileage varies daily.

-Rick
Hi Rick, condescension is just part of the schtick...don't take it seriously. Like AJ who has me all figured out. BTW I decided to dig the real nugget out of your mine.

I align analog machines myself because most assistants over here only align at 100, 1k and 10k, which isn't good enough, and they don't usually do the bass alignment right. I want 50 and 16k as well, and I might not set PB flat, either. If the azimuth and bias haven't been done in a while, I'll do those, too. I'm hardcore, but I want the machine to sing. If it doesn't sound considerably better than digital, what's the point? Analog is expensive and slower. So I make it sound better or I don't do it.

*********

On another point, when tracking rock bands, there is very definitely a difference in vibe between tracking to PT and to tape, and not just the novelty factor ("hey guys, hear the rewind? We're working with real tape...") It's the concentration...to get the take right, right now.

*********

Hi Jules,

Good point, but...naw. So are you going PT HD?

I thought a Trak2 at 48/96k sounded much better btw than the HD192 at 192k...could you please try the Prisms you have vs the HD192 and let us know!

HD192 = Big Mac. Prisms = Sushi.

Hm...the Dangerous 2-bus is a fine example of a light saber out-cutting a crunchy blaster...

Old 5th September 2002
  #105
Hi Jon,

I like you gave up after a while trying to make the mixplus sound less 2 dimensional(i also own an SSL 6048 E/G and might pick up a Neve VRP). I think until this year, i hadn't done a full mix in Pro Tools. I tried the HD system when it first came out and for the first time I felt that I could do something serious with it. I since mixed a song(Over 80 tracks which is low in todays pop/rnb music) and was impressed how it gelled together. It sounded similar to what I could get on a 9000J. Now these were mostly electronic tracks and lots of vocals, so I can't vouch yet for rock. But still I was thoroughly impressed. By the way the mix was at 48K and the clock was Digi own loop sync.

Seriously, could someone please say what Digi has done -- concretely -- to improve the sound of mixing in HD over mixing in MixPlus...

I guess the two most important are 1)that it is now a true 48bit mixer through out 2) when you go over a certain amount tracks/voices, the processing power stays the same through out, it doesn't get dithered down. I think in the old mixplus, this happens after 32voices? Jules chime in here for a sec. I think the place where it suffered most is in the aux tracks. Now I am not totally sure if they have perfected this one(I thought I heard a slight difference when I switched from 32 to 64 and up, but very slight). Still even at the low rates and high track counts it sounded excellent.
Old 5th September 2002
  #106
Lives for gear
 

I have a long time best buddy who has been a PT Mix mixer for a while. He works in the Contemporary Christian field, where budgets are tighter, but the expectations remain high. Thus, mix in the box.

A very talented guy with great ears and I believe about 50 or so #1 records in that market. No slouch.

He was always striving for "something" more out of his PT Mix scene. Not bad, just not great.

He just updated to HD (Core plus 3 Process cards) and he feels there is definitely an improvement. The way he put it, he finally felt like he was getting where he wanted to go without *having* to strap toys across the 2 bus.

Since I know him and his work, that's probably the most glowing endorsement I've heard on HD.

So I believe it's better. How much? Can't say. There yet for everybody? Nope. Not yet. How muchof it is better A/D and clocking? How much is TDM II? Some of both likely.

But in any event, better is good, yes? And if it *is* better, to be immodest for but a moment, PT users can thank those of us who were not drinking the sonic koolaid, and giving Digi mondo grief for sounding smaller, the bigger a record got. Can I get an "Amen" on that one?

I started griping about this in '99 and voted with my pocketbook. (I can just hear them now, "You mean Brian won't buy PT.....oh, no, what will we do....we're doomed." Muhahahaha).

But seriously, folks. It really is cool to see the thing improving sonically. It's in everybody's best interest for all gear to sound as good as possible. It makes the music more fun, for us and for the listener, now don't it just?


Regards,
Brian T
Old 5th September 2002
  #107
Lives for gear
 
drundall's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by Jules

I have heard both, it helps bring missing 3D depth to the soundstage & gives potential for classier HF 'sizzle' and more pleasant, lower lows. Both previously thought to be the bastion of analog tape.
Yeah, what he said.

I recently did a project where the client wanted to do analog but after pre production I knew I was going into edit hell, so I convinced them to track straight to HD. It was my ass if it didn't sound warm, big and powerful, with a lot of depth. They loved it.
Btuned metal.
Didn't really like heavy gtrs in PT before but I'm very happy with how they came out in HD.
Old 5th September 2002
  #108
Lives for gear
 
C.Lambrechts's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by thethrillfactor
....
Seriously, could someone please say what Digi has done -- concretely -- to improve the sound of mixing in HD over mixing in MixPlus...

I guess the two most important are 1)that it is now a true 48bit mixer through out 2) when you go over a certain amount tracks/voices, the processing power stays the same through out, it doesn't get dithered down. I think in the old mixplus, this happens after 32voices? Jules chime in here for a sec. I think the place where it suffered most is in the aux tracks. Now I am not totally sure if they have perfected this one(I thought I heard a slight difference when I switched from 32 to 64 and up, but very slight). Still even at the low rates and high track counts it sounded excellent.

summing occurs after 68 x 2 sources instead of 59 x 2 sources on a Mix.

It has nothing to do with the number of voices imho.

internal processing stays 48 bit, even when signals have to cross over different dsp's, everything is dithered to 24 bit only at the very last stage ... the Mix bus. dithered if you use the dithered mixer of course.
Old 5th September 2002
  #109
As a Prism converter owner, as Jon hinted, I need reconnaisance on the 96k preformance of HD and the direct hook up to the cards Prism have only just engineered... THATS going to be HARD to get reports on..... Like finding someone who has test driven a Delorian! (er hang on ......Michael?)

Old 7th September 2002
  #110
jon
Capitol Studios Paris
 
jon's Avatar
 

Let us know please, Jules.



So, to get back on topic...how do we know that the new QOTSA album was mixed in PT?

And if so, was it a MixPlus or HD?

Who mixed the thing, anyway?
Old 8th September 2002
  #111
Lives for gear
 
Henchman's Avatar
Well, I just listened to their first single on their website. It doesn't really matter how this was recorded, because it is so incredibly boring, it's not true. The most repetetive song I've heard in a long time. It sounds like a couple of riffs that have been looped. My god, why do they waste money on this kind of tripe.
And it just goes on and on and on. Almost 4 1/2 minutes of repetetive loops. Aaaargh!!!
Old 8th September 2002
  #112
High End Moderator
 
mwagener's Avatar
Quote:
Originally posted by Jules
THATS going to be HARD to get reports on..... Like finding someone who has test driven a Delorian! (er hang on ......Michael?)

Sorry Jules, can't help you there (PT or DeLorian) heh
Old 8th September 2002
  #113
I would just settle for one of the doors!
heh
Old 20th September 2002
  #114
Here for the gear
 
The Specialist's Avatar
 

As I listened to that album (as a huge QOTSA fan and massive KYUSS fan), I decided that Alsihad was a tool used by the producer and band. Is this wrong? I've listend to this several times, and I like the first Queens album better for the organic sound, and vibe, I think this PT application sounds intentional, the tightness is by design. This album makes you feel a bit uneasy.

This is the reason we all do this this, to move people.

I could be wrong, but I still like the record, and I think the
tones complement the tunes. Josh Homme does not seem to make mistakes too often. I know Mr. Valentine produced the album, but I'm sure he preseverved the vision on this one.

Right?
V
Old 23rd September 2002
  #115
Lives for gear
 

It still sounds like QOTSA to me - albeit with Eric Valentine producing. A little tighter than the last one. Is this a bad thing? Hmmm... I like the songs on the first record best. I don't think it was mixed INSIDE ProTools.
Old 28th September 2002
  #116
Lives for gear
 
Henchman's Avatar
Quote:
Originally posted by alphajerk

does henchman come around here? he did a mix on a mackie d8b that totally gave an SSL mix a run for its money.
I guess I missed this part of thread. But yes, i do wander around here.
Old 28th September 2002
  #117
Gear Nut
 
Andy Sneap's Avatar
 

Hey Jules, I thought that was interesting what you said about drums tracked digitally.
I've been using PT's for everything for close on a couple of years now, grew up using the standard SSL /API / Neve + Studer , depending where in the world I ended up.
I tracked an album in Germany last year and the artist wanted to track drums to tape, couldn't really argue with that but I have to say it was freaking me out how different they were sounding coming back, after getting used to digital.
It's a case of what your trying to acheive, lets face it, some of the "classics" sound like ****e, it's the songs and the whole vibe that pull them though.
By the way can we all get along a bit better here, we were all so friendly till a few weeks ago...
Old 28th September 2002
  #118
Riffer
 
lflier's Avatar
 

Great thread! A couple of comments from somebody who went through the same curve as Jon and others (tried working with PT for a couple of years, realized you couldn't get the sound you wanted by mixing in PT but you could practically get the "missing" sound just by pushing up the faders on a good analog console):

1) The argument that a great engineer can get a great mix no matter what the medium, is a red herring. So is the argument that there are lots of ****ty analog recordings and mixes out there. We all know that both of those things are true, but that's not the point. The point is that given the best engineer and the best recordings, the best possible sound will not be achieved by mixing within PT. If you have access to a high end studio, and you listen to well recorded tracks within PT, and then take those same tracks and bring them up on an analog console of any repute, you WILL hear a difference, a very noticable one. I can't imagine anyone NOT hearing it. I think Recorderman summed it up best when he said "... I don't think it's a matter of technique...it's like asking someone to try and beat a formula-one with a nascar." (and I agree with Recorderman too that the problems in PT get way worse the more plugs you add).

2) Kind of a tangent, but I think that part of the reason rock musicians and engineers still prefer the sound of tape, is because analog tape and rock'n'roll kind of grew up together. Rock would not be what it is, if it weren't for the fact that multitrack recording was coming into its own at about the same time. Therefore the two are irrevocably bound together. Rock without tape is a little like rock without tube guitar amps, it just don't seem right heh . Not that great rock records can't be made and won't be made digitally... but just like many of us guitar players will never find an acceptable substitute for tube amps, lots of rock engineers may never find a medium that rocks our world like tape does either. And that's OK, to each their own. The same thing could be said about DAW's vis a vis electronica and hip hop - the one couldn't possibly be the same without the other.

P.S. Jon, I still think SSL's suck compared to Amek, API and Neve. heh But, you rock anyway!
Old 29th September 2002
  #119
Gear Addict
 
mixer's Avatar
 

its a poor carpenter who blames the hammer for a bent nail....hows that for an overused saying...you can over process on any media...i have heard albums recorded on neve studer equip. with tons of compressors gates bad reverb selection just devistate some really good music...somehow the music shines through....not that a great recording production and mix can't represent a great song and make it better it is essential in my mind.....i use pro tools hd now but started with a neve and a 4 track 3m multitrack...gone from mci to ssl to harrison..to an apple mac...with pro control ....and have found one thing true...less is more and the secret to a great mix is a great arrangment played by great players.........but maybe thats just me.......
Old 29th September 2002
  #120
There is only one
 
alphajerk's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally posted by mixer
its a poor carpenter who blames the hammer for a bent nail........and have found one thing true...less is more and the secret to a great mix is a great arrangment played by great players.........but maybe thats just me.......
well, its me too.
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