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How to get those SUPER Loud Mixes?
Old 30th January 2007
  #61
Quote:
Originally Posted by lord_bunny View Post
pushing something to -9 arbitrarily isn't really the goal of mastering. There is a point where you just shouldn't push a mix any further.
Yeah, but I am trying to compete with commercial mixes, I know its sad, but thats what Im looking for. Im hoping with pro mastering my mixes will stand up to beating them to -9 or -9.5.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lord_bunny View Post
People often mix kick too loud. It's because the kick is percieved on major records as being bigger than it is. Because it's a nice drum, a good player and great eq'ing, the kick sits in their mixes like a dream, and it imparts a sense of power without having to be so prominent. One thing I had to do was remember that when I place the kick is to check back to mixes I admire that have some contextual silimarities to the task at hand.
Yeah it is hard to eq kick drum in heavy rock/metal so that it sounds like for example Deftones. Alot of metal out these days, the kick is horrible sounding. Just sounds really clicky and too upfront. As you were saying tis about the kcik having power without sitting to infront. Ive been playing with EQ ad have realised that I can get there if I resample my kick track with some samples Ive recorded for a more even level, then use some compression then EQ (not as much high end but more concentrating on the lo end without loosing much punch) and also using heavy buss compression.

Cheers man.
Eck
Old 31st January 2007
  #62
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madcowvt's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by lord_bunny View Post
Very cool. I love that Gary Jules version. The L2 is working on the whole program. So whatever crosses that threshold be it in the top or bottom range, will be the first thing clipped. It sounds to me like your kick might be too out front of the mix if it's being so adversly affected. Also, pushing something to -9 arbitrarily isn't really the goal of mastering. There is a point where you just shouldn't push a mix any further. Also, you might want to use a combination of multi-band compression and an opto-style compressor before the limiter. There are many great articles online about multi-band compression that you should study, because it's something that can just as easily ruin a master as enhance it.

People often mix kick too loud. It's because the kick is percieved on major records as being bigger than it is. Because it's a nice drum, a good player and great eq'ing, the kick sits in their mixes like a dream, and it imparts a sense of power without having to be so prominent. One thing I had to do was remember that when I place the kick is to check back to mixes I admire that have some contextual silimarities to the task at hand.

Don't draw from memory, thats what my art teachers alwasy said. Look at the subject. So have a mix on hand in your sessions that you can turn to for context until your really comfortable.

Last thing: When The Levee breaks has the biggest "sounding" kick drum in history IMHO. Hip Hop will always have a louder kick objectively, but Zepplin will make you believe theirs is bigger.
Question: Suppose the kick is mixed loud but sounds good (loud meaning where i like it in the mix). Would you say you can "Preserve" that by using a mutliband before the L2 so the L2 therefore does not kill the nice kick sound that is punching through? If so, what would be your process if you only had a multiband (linmb) and L2 to work with?
Just curious since I notice the kick and snare disapearing when I attempt to make a mix louder with the L2 as well.
Old 31st January 2007
  #63
Gear Head
 

As the original poster, I would like to clarify something. I refered to myself early on as a "newbie", but perhaps I didn't know the true meaning of "newbie". I am not new to audio production. I have been recording and mixing for 17 years. Similar to the guy in the small town in Canada, I work in a fairly small music community where there is no dedicated mastering studio in my town. Therefore, I am dabbling in mastering as a learning tool, and also to please clients who can't afford dedicated mastering houses. So if "newbie" means I am new to audio, then I used the wrong term. If "newbie" means I am new to this forum, then that is what I meant. So to answer the questions of some of you, no I have not just started to work in the audio field, trying to be a mastering engineer right off the bat. I've made hundreds of great recordings over the years. Just trying something new to break the monotony a little bit. There have been some very informative posts on this discussion. Thanks again to those of you being so helpful. I think we can put this discussion to rest now. My questions have been answered. Thank you and goodnight. Bart Rose
Old 31st January 2007
  #64
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Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by bartrose View Post
As the original poster, I would like to clarify something. I refered to myself early on as a "newbie", but perhaps I didn't know the true meaning of "newbie". I am not new to audio production. I have been recording and mixing for 17 years. Similar to the guy in the small town in Canada, I work in a fairly small music community where there is no dedicated mastering studio in my town. Therefore, I am dabbling in mastering as a learning tool, and also to please clients who can't afford dedicated mastering houses. So if "newbie" means I am new to audio, then I used the wrong term. If "newbie" means I am new to this forum, then that is what I meant. So to answer the questions of some of you, no I have not just started to work in the audio field, trying to be a mastering engineer right off the bat. I've made hundreds of great recordings over the years. Just trying something new to break the monotony a little bit. There have been some very informative posts on this discussion. Thanks again to those of you being so helpful. I think we can put this discussion to rest now. My questions have been answered. Thank you and goodnight. Bart Rose
When you say your clients can't afford a decicated mastering house ....have they ever looked? There are lots of people on this web board that offer reasonable rates for mastering. I can never understand why someone who has just spent 3 months to a year recording an album would not have an additional 4 to 5 hundred dollars to make their album sound more professional. We are not talking GATEWAY prices at 4 to 5 hundred dollars an hour we are talking complete albums done for what GATEWAY charges for one hour and done very well. Not all professional mastering houses are in the high price spread catagory. It seems to me that a lot of recording/mix engineers who say their clients can't afford a "real" mastering engineer don't tell their clients the alternatives and maybe more interested in increasing their bottom line than getting the best for their clients. You may or may not fit into this summation but it is, I think, the truth in a lot of cases.
Old 31st January 2007
  #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe View Post
When you say your clients can't afford a decicated mastering house ....have they ever looked? There are lots of people on this web board that offer reasonable rates for mastering. I can never understand why someone who has just spent 3 months to a year recording an album would not have an additional 4 to 5 hundred dollars to make their album sound more professional. We are not talking GATEWAY prices at 4 to 5 hundred dollars an hour we are talking complete albums done for what GATEWAY charges for one hour and done very well. Not all professional mastering houses are in the high price spread catagory. It seems to me that a lot of recording/mix engineers who say their clients can't afford a "real" mastering engineer don't tell their clients the alternatives and maybe more interested in increasing their bottom line than getting the best for their clients. You may or may not fit into this summation but it is, I think, the truth in a lot of cases.
My thoughts exactly!
Old 31st January 2007
  #66
Quote:
Originally Posted by madcowvt View Post
Question: Suppose the kick is mixed loud but sounds good (loud meaning where i like it in the mix). Would you say you can "Preserve" that by using a mutliband before the L2 so the L2 therefore does not kill the nice kick sound that is punching through? If so, what would be your process if you only had a multiband (linmb) and L2 to work with?
Just curious since I notice the kick and snare disapearing when I attempt to make a mix louder with the L2 as well.
A very good point someone made earlier on about limiting mixes. I used to boost my kick drum and snare to compensate for the L2 killing them, but if the kick wasnt so loud in the first place then it wouldnt need to be limited as much therefor (in theory) hold its tone and punch!
IM gonna try that.

Eck
Old 31st January 2007
  #67
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Bob Yordan's Avatar
Hmm ...

Just a small reflection.

I like mixes/masters that have loud and soft parts/sounds, that makes it sound loud compared inside itself, instead of compared to other mixes/masters.

Just pushing up everything until all inside it almost bursts does no impress me so much.

Old 31st January 2007
  #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
My thoughts exactly!

Well, to be honest it's not as cut and dry as that.

Most bands I know have VERY limited budgets,
sometimes people really just cant afford certain prices.
Old 31st January 2007
  #69
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Yordan View Post
Hmm ...

Just a small reflection.

I like mixes/masters that have loud and soft parts/sounds, that makes it sound loud compared inside itself, instead of compared to other mixes/masters.

Just pushing up everything until all inside it almost bursts does no impress me so much.

Yeah dynamics are a very important part of a mix IMO.
Just becuase you boost the the mix up to -9dB RMS Average doesnt mean your not going to have any dynamics left.
The way I do it is boost the whole mix so the loudest parts (choruses usualy) are between -9/-10dB RMS Average.
I still get loads of dynamics. Ok the choruses might sound a little more squashed than before the limiting, but the dynamics for the mix that I mixed in are still very there.

Eck
Old 31st January 2007
  #70
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Bob Yordan's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ecktronic View Post
Yeah dynamics are a very important part of a mix IMO.
Just becuase you boost the the mix up to -9dB RMS Average doesnt mean your not going to have any dynamics left.
The way I do it is boost the whole mix so the loudest parts (choruses usualy) are between -9/-10dB RMS Average.
I still get loads of dynamics. Ok the choruses might sound a little more squashed than before the limiting, but the dynamics for the mix that I mixed in are still very there.

Eck
Yup, that is correct. The L&R levels does not always tell the whole thruth, if you look at (hmm, listen to) the whole freq spectra there might still be dynamics going. I often make some tests (for my own pleasure) of how loud I can make stuff in WL6 (with plugs (mostly my own developed plugs)) and sometimes the RMS average is way below -9dB (44,1kHz 16bit), but I still have acceptable dynamics/no distortions + added a lot of low bass compared to the original. But it does not always sound so loud as I would expect it to do. The wave form looks like a sausage. But this is just for my own experiments. heh

Old 1st February 2007
  #71
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madcowvt View Post
Question: Suppose the kick is mixed loud but sounds good (loud meaning where i like it in the mix). Would you say you can "Preserve" that by using a mutliband before the L2 so the L2 therefore does not kill the nice kick sound that is punching through? If so, what would be your process if you only had a multiband (linmb) and L2 to work with?
Just curious since I notice the kick and snare disapearing when I attempt to make a mix louder with the L2 as well.
So to answer a few querstions and to clarify a good point someone made. When you get your mix as hot as -9 RMS what we're really talking about is -9 RMS at the peaks of the arrangment, whether that would be the chorus or the bridge etc... the verse's, intro etc could be -13 RMS... it's all very subjective.

The question about the kick and snare thing. You need to make room in your mix so that these things can still be clear and powerful sounding without having to push up the fader so much. People have different methods depending on the type of kick they're going for. First if you have the pleasure of working with a great drummer you'll use a compressor not so much to control his dynamics but to shape the tone... and use eq to help it sit in the mix appropriatley (when the signal has gone straight to the DAW I'll do a high pass at 40-50 as to keep the sub frequencies from triggering the limiter). If your adding too much bass to the kick, this is what the problem could be.

Why not post the mix and the master?

The multiband compressor: your attack and release times are dependant on the material on a song by song basis. Multiband compression is about trying to seem as transparent as possible... the goal is to not hear it working, set up the make-up gain so that it is the same as the output with the compressor bypassed. practice and play with it and then bypass it to A/b against the uncompressed signal. You want control, with as little tonal difference as possible (or maybe you want a tonal difference i.e. if your a amastering engineer trying to balance the master tonally). It might seem like spinning plates at first but...

Bottom line, if the L2 is crapping out your kick and snare, the problem lies in the mix, because it sounds like your trying to limit too much. Are you keeping track of your peak reduction?
Old 1st February 2007
  #72
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Yordan View Post
Yup, that is correct. The L&R levels does not always tell the whole thruth, if you look at (hmm, listen to) the whole freq spectra there might still be dynamics going. I often make some tests (for my own pleasure) of how loud I can make stuff in WL6 (with plugs (mostly my own developed plugs)) and sometimes the RMS average is way below -9dB (44,1kHz 16bit), but I still have acceptable dynamics/no distortions + added a lot of low bass compared to the original. But it does not always sound so loud as I would expect it to do. The wave form looks like a sausage. But this is just for my own experiments. heh

By controliing the low and low mids and adding more high mids around 1-2K you can make your mixes "sound" louder. Low end and low mids really eat up your RMS.

Eck
Old 1st February 2007
  #73
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what the fuss is all about ? mix for the master. do everything ya can to do it right. knowledge + gear + price. end of story. thumbsup

the best mixes dont really need anything much in mastering stage xept for quality check... they come there already sounding great, balanced and loud enough.

ppl percive louder as better so somebody during the process the needs to balance damage/loudness ratio.

one other thing... mastering engs = elite ?!?!?!? mix engs = not elite ?!?!?

there are pros and charlatans in both camps imo

who started that rumor ?!?!?
Old 1st February 2007
  #74
Quote:
Originally Posted by lofi View Post
mastering engs = elite ?!?!?!? mix engs = not elite ?!?!?
Andy Wallace and Terry Date = Elite = mix engs.

Eck
Old 1st February 2007
  #75
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No doubt - A mastering engineer can only be as "elite" as the engineer who supplied the mix. And the mixing engineer can only be as "elite" as the guy who set up the microphones for tracking. And the tracking team can only be as "elite" as the sounds being recorded in the first place.

(Drum replacement and other sorts of post-sonic surgery aside...)
Old 1st February 2007
  #76
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Bob Yordan's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ecktronic View Post
By controliing the low and low mids and adding more high mids around 1-2K you can make your mixes "sound" louder. Low end and low mids really eat up your RMS.

Eck
Hiya

Must check out the 1-2k tip. Usually I think that boosting at 1k is a bit sharp for my ears. Even though I kind of boost the whole freq spectra doing my experiments. heh
Old 2nd February 2007
  #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucey View Post
This thread again shows how the GS Mastering corner, unlike most of Gearslutz, is leaning more and more towards becoming a cocky jerk zone. An often ugly place where the power hungry take aim and fire (often anonymously, but not always) ... and that's not only pathetic on a personal level - it's a boring and divisive read.

Yup. Elitism and "hire-me instead" attitudes are a plague on Mastering forums. Recording.org is poisoned with it and has become completely useless as a result.

NEWSFLASH: These aren't promotional boards. You are not paying for advertising space when you post here. If all you have to add to a conversation is, "Pay me or someone else to do it," you are in the wrong place and should probably quiet down or go elsewhere.

How often do you see someone ask for advice on miking drums/guitars and get responses, "Hire a drum/guitar tech. Amateurs can't do it well themselves so don't try."?

If you feel threatened or annoyed by newbs doing your job at a subpar quality, no one's forcing you to be here or respond. If you don't want to help them get better or listen to their requests for information, the same applies.

Let's keep it a positive and healthy environment. Thankfully from the tone of the posts that followed the first page or so, it looks like most people are on board here with this philosophy as well. Good info all around!

Old 2nd February 2007
  #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bartrose View Post
I know, we are trying to avoid this but sometimes the clients demand it. See, I record alot of modern rock, pop punk, metal, etc. Are there any quick tips on what gear is being used to get those Insanely loud, yet still pretty clean mixes? Does the TC Finalizer play a big role in this? I'm talking about Blink 182, Korn, and bands like that who's levels I just can't seem to match. I mean, I can get close, but still cannot get the clean, loud levels those guys are getting. I also know that I don't have a dedicated mastering studio, because I mostly do tracking and mixing. Here is a quick rundown of the gear I've got. Do I have the tools to do this kind of work? I have: Manley Massive Passive EQ, Manley Variable MU compressor, L2 hardware limiter, a pair of Distressors, plus plenty of plugins, including the Waves Gold bundle, running on Pro Tools HD3 system. Hopefully I won't piss off too many of you who are trying to reverse the volume wars.. If so, I apologize in advance.. Bart Rose www.firststreetaudio.com
I use to have the same issues, not any more. My mixes are as loud or louder than retail shelf ready. My results came from 75% tracking ( meaning using preamps like 3124 API on drums, guitar, bass) and the other 25% comes from mastering compressors/processors, I use a Vari Mu / Fairchild / SSL for that purpose......If other engineers feel like im wrong, hey !! its works for me, even with lower levels sometimes i still have a loud final mix.One other thing, if your artist/band is aggressive with their playing it will sound even better, if they have a lazy attack, well then you will have lazy loud levels, i run into that all the time.
Old 2nd February 2007
  #79
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Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by audiovisceral View Post
Yup. Elitism and "hire-me instead" attitudes are a plague on Mastering forums. Recording.org is poisoned with it and has become completely useless as a result.

NEWSFLASH: These aren't promotional boards. You are not paying for advertising space when you post here. If all you have to add to a conversation is, "Pay me or someone else to do it," you are in the wrong place and should probably quiet down or go elsewhere.

How often do you see someone ask for advice on miking drums/guitars and get responses, "Hire a drum/guitar tech. Amateurs can't do it well themselves so don't try."?

If you feel threatened or annoyed by newbies doing your job at a sub par quality, no one's forcing you to be here or respond. If you don't want to help them get better or listen to their requests for information, the same applies.

Let's keep it a positive and healthy environment. Thankfully from the tone of the posts that followed the first page or so, it looks like most people are on board here with this philosophy as well. Good info all around!

I agree with your idea to keep things positive and healthy.

A lot of people on this board try to help newbies when they ask for help HOWEVER the newbies have to understand that posting questions on a mastering board can only go SO far in helping them do a better job of mastering. They have to have the right equipment, the room and monitoring environment and the experience to do mastering that will help and not hurt the music they are trying to master.

The BEST way for someone to learn the basics of mastering is to read Bob Katz's book and then to schedule some time in a professional mastering studio to understand what goes on in a mastering session. Trying to learn by yourself in your bedroom is like trying to understand how to do brain surgery by watching SCRUBS and then posting a question on a medical web board. To put it succinctly " IT AIN'T GOING TO HAPPEN". Even audiophiles who are very adept at listening to music still have to learn how to take what they are hearing and figure out how to make it better by using the equipment they have available to them in a mastering studio and that takes lot of EXPERIENCE which you can't get from posting questions or reading responses off a mastering web board.

On the other side of the coin I have had people come to mastering sessions and write everything down including the dimensions of my mastering room and how far I am sitting from the speakers with the idea that they can go home a from now on master their own material. Again "IT AIN'T GOING TO HAPPEN" What I do and what my settings I use are not going to guarantee them success. Hopefully what they will take away is how I approach the mastering and how I achieved the final outcome of the mastering process.

Many of the newbie questions are "I have some tracks that I want to master myself for a CD and I want to find out what settings to use so I can do them" We can all give them suggestions but unless we are sitting in their room listening with their monitoring setup and working with their equipment we will not be able to give them any meaningfully advice. What I would do with my Weiss EQ is far different than someone with a DOD graphic eq could do with the same settings.

I have had many interns that wanted to learn mastering and wanted someone to mentor them and I am always happy to help them learn. I have also had people who wanted quick fixes and literally called me on the phone and said " I am trying to master my own material and wanted to ask you what the settings you used on the last mastering you did for me" to which I aways say "here are the settings for my equipment but without hearing the material and hearing what you are hearing and not know what equipment you are using for the mastering these settings are probably NOT going to help you very much".

So yes lets keep things positive and upbeat but also let tell the newbies the truth and that is basically " you have to pay your dues before you can hang out your sign saying "mastering engineer" and that involves lots of hard work, lots of money for equipment and monitoring and lots and lots of experience.... and it is not an overnight have to have it now way of learning.

Old 2nd February 2007
  #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe View Post
I agree with your idea to keep things positive and healthy.

...
The BEST way for someone to learn the basics of mastering is to read Bob Katz's book and then to schedule some time in a professional mastering studio to understand what goes on in a mastering session. Trying to learn by yourself in your bedroom is like trying to understand how to do brain surgery by watching SCRUBS and then posting a question on a medical web board. ...
I can definitely agree with the gist of your reply. FYI, I’ve always thought you were one of the good ones around here and elsewhere.

Two comments though (hopefully not to hijack the thread too much …) :

1) Bob Katz’s book – I am sure, from what everyone says, Bob is a fantastic ME. However, I own a copy, have read it cover to cover, and frankly don’t get what all the fuss is about. There seemed hardly a single subject in there I read about that I didn’t feel I already had an equal or greater grasp of from reading posts online and personal experimentation. For example, his section discussing manipulating dynamics for loudness spends, if I recall, hardly more than 5-10 pages, despite this subject being the #1 most discussed and debated topic in mastering today, both in terms of technique and taste. If that isn’t enough, these pages are filled with pictures of how compression affects a waveform’s shape, as well as the difference between a soft and hard knee, that are so simple they are almost childlike.

If a person is a COMPLETE newb, and doesn’t know how to operate an EQ, compressor, or other basic gear, perhaps I could a book like this being useful. Also, I could see how to a pro who 'gets' all the details Bob neglects to offer, this could be almost like a “comfort food” of mastering reading, with all the bases covered, it being nicely written, not pushing any controversial techniques, etc. But I would hardly call it stimulating or textbook level for a primer or education. I'm sure I may tee a few people off by saying all this. If so, just keep in mind I am only saying it because I believe it, and not because I’m trying to get into any fights.


2) This may be long but stay with me here.

Yes there totally must be some give and take with the whole newbie asking for pro results thing. I know I’m not an ME. I know I’ll never be an ME. Frankly, I don’t WANT to be an ME. However, I will quite likely for the duration of my musical career continue to master all or the vast majority of my compositions and recordings. Will they sound good as in ‘mastering good’? Of course not. But I’m still going to keep doing it. And I’m still going to keep posting questions on how to get better. FYI, reasons inclue: I play not-for-profit, DIY technology keeps improving, I don’t need perfect results to enjoy myself, etc…

I think there will always be two camps in the ME boards – the DIYers like myself, and the pros like yourself and others, and I’m sure there are always going to be some pretty hard-line differences of opinions as a result. I really like the idea of all of us getting along nonetheless. But writing this just now (and I’m not even sure if I should finish this sentence), I almost get the feeling there should be TWO mastering boards: One for low-end, and one for high, so that people posting about $400 plug-ins won’t be in the way of those discussing $10,000 outboard units, and vice versa.

I don’t mean this to be divisive, but it just seems it might make everyone stay on topic better and play nicer. It might help kind of like the “Low End Theory” board does (ie. When someone posts a question there about Behringer gear, they don’t get immediately shat on for evoking the B word like they might in any other place - everything is taken in context).

Similarly, perhaps here we could have a second Mastering board for the ITBers/DIYers/master-bus-mixers to chat freely about plugins like LinEQ’s, other cheapo options, etc., and give the pros with the real things a place to similarly discuss the nuances of their converters and newest high end acquisitions.

The whole ITB/DIY mastering thing clearly isn’t going away any time soon. Perhaps the best we could all do is grow to accommodate it accordingly. I really think it could do wonders for everyone here.

Potential titles: DIY Mastering, Low-End Mastering.



Thoughts?
Old 3rd February 2007
  #81
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Masterer's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by audiovisceral View Post
Potential titles: DIY Mastering, Low-End Mastering.



Thoughts?

Not a bad Idea.

A F.A.Q. sticky might not be a bad idea as well.

A single spot to peruse threads like "how to get my **** loud" and "clipping the converters [to make my **** loud]" and "adding midrange so that my **** is perceptually louder" and "mastering room dimensions for louder ****" type threads [O.K., that last one might be a stretch but you get the point].

I'm not kidding BTW. I do think it's a pretty good idea.
Old 3rd February 2007
  #82
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Sticky topics are the answer to common questions and comments.

How do I make **** loud ?- sticky
Clipping vs limiting - sticky
Use gear for yourself, dont just look for answers from others - sticky
Ears/skill and the monitoring, not the other gear - sticky

A separate board for plugs furthers the concept that gear makes the major difference. Plug ins are fine if that's what you have, they dont need a board.

The principles of mastering are common, as are the principles of respecting different people even as we dont like something about them or their point. The principle of separating this board off in the first place was far enough.
Old 3rd February 2007
  #83
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zaza View Post
I use to have the same issues, not any more. My mixes are as loud or louder than retail shelf ready. My results came from 75% tracking ( meaning using preamps like 3124 API on drums, guitar, bass) and the other 25% comes from mastering compressors/processors, I use a Vari Mu / Fairchild / SSL for that purpose......If other engineers feel like im wrong, hey !! its works for me, even with lower levels sometimes i still have a loud final mix.One other thing, if your artist/band is aggressive with their playing it will sound even better, if they have a lazy attack, well then you will have lazy loud levels, i run into that all the time.
Sounds like there is light at the end..... #
Couldn´t agree more, especially with the playing.
If you want it loud just perform loud!
Old 3rd February 2007
  #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Yordan View Post
Hmm ...

Just a small reflection.

I like mixes/masters that have loud and soft parts/sounds, that makes it sound loud compared inside itself, instead of compared to other mixes/masters.

Just pushing up everything until all inside it almost bursts does no impress me so much.

You hit the nail on the head.
Old 3rd February 2007
  #85
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I always wonder where mastering engineers came from, because it seems that no one can learn to do it from all of the mastering forum discussions out there. Are we awaiting the Kwisatch Haderach of mastering?
Old 3rd February 2007
  #86
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sid Viscous View Post
I always wonder where mastering engineers came from, because it seems that no one can learn to do it from all of the mastering forum discussions out there. Are we awaiting the Kwisatch Haderach of mastering?

Most mastering engineers I know were mix engineers or served an apprenticeship with a professional in a mastering house before striking out on there own. Some people came to it via other routes such as classical recording or they were an audiophile or musician but most came from mixing or had a couple of years under their belt working for someone else before deciding to become a professional mastering engineer. It is NOT rocket science and anyone with good ears and a good approach to learning can learn the craft of mastering. How good you are is all up to how well you learn from the experiences (both good and bad) you have along the way.

Trying to become an overnight wiz as a mastering engineer by posting some questions on a mastering web board is probably NOT the best way to learn IMHO.
Old 3rd February 2007
  #87
Quote:
Originally Posted by bartrose View Post
I know, we are trying to avoid this but sometimes the clients demand it.
there is ways to talk the client out of it... do a GOOD master and a VERY LOUD master and play them at the same perceived loudness-level. show the client the missing bass impact and transient definition on the VERY LOUD master... that helps usally...

if any client thinks his music is still not loud, take a close look at the midrange between 1 and 5 KHz.. if there is holes in this frequency range there the records will never sound very loud... a full linear mix should easily get loud. I never go over -10dB RMS crest .. that is already VERY LOUD in my ears. -8 dB RMS is insane and sounds weak whatever you do to it... if the client insists I usally tell him: "oh, yeah I can make it very loud, that is easy - but then please do not tell anyone where you mastered it cause it will sound like crap." - makes them think... ;-)

robert
Old 3rd February 2007
  #88
Gear Guru
 
lucey's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by bob humid View Post
do a GOOD master and a VERY LOUD master and play them at the same perceived loudness-level. show the client the missing bass impact and transient definition on the VERY LOUD master... that helps usally...
Right. and if they insist, then you go on. This has been my approach for a couple of years ... set a first pass standard for "loud" around -10 as a way to offer and maybe educate without pissing anyone off.
Old 4th February 2007
  #89
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Chrisac's Avatar
 

Spot the fear coming from those that think mere mortals should never approach mastering or even ask a question. Engineers and producers have been dealing with this newbie toy assault for 20 years. Those that survived embraced the changes and also learned from those that had no formal training.
The same goes for mastering engineers, your going to have to adapt to survive. And anway Ive heard plenty very average jobs from so called seasoned vets and many of these mixes had fear written all over them. Then I hear one from the newbie guy who hasnt a clue what hes doing using a few plugins and can often hear excitement written all over them.

And how come ITS ONLY FORUM MASTERING ENGINEERS that are always complaining about loudness. The ones I spek t in person who happen to work in commercial rooms never do.
Old 4th February 2007
  #90
Gear Guru
 
Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chrisac View Post
Spot the fear coming from those that think mere mortals should never approach mastering or even ask a question. Engineers and producers have been dealing with this newbie toy assault for 20 years. Those that survived embraced the changes and also learned from those that had no formal training.
The same goes for mastering engineers, your going to have to adapt to survive. And anway Ive heard plenty very average jobs from so called seasoned vets and many of these mixes had fear written all over them. Then I hear one from the newbie guy who hasnt a clue what hes doing using a few plugins and can often hear excitement written all over them.

And how come ITS ONLY FORUM MASTERING ENGINEERS that are always complaining about loudness. The ones I spek t in person who happen to work in commercial rooms never do.
Maybe it is because a lot of us CARE about what we are doing. If people want to go to someone that will take their money and never say anything then there are plenty of people out there that will do just that. In my 11 years as a mastering engineer and my 35+ years as a professional audio engineer I have seen many audio engineers who are in this strictly for the money and could give a rat's a$$ about the quality of the product they are producing or what they are doing to the career or the goals of the musician that has come to them for help. All they really care about is getting the money at the end of the session PERIOD.

What I understand you to say is that anyone that questions the loudness race is not a good mastering engineer? I don't think so. I think that people who genuinely care about their clients and what their music sounds like when it leaves their mastering room are the best of the best.

So think whatever you want to but I don't believe in taking someone's money for doing nothing more than making their stuff EXTRA loud. I think they deserve more than that. I will try to find out exactly how they want their stuff to sound and do my professional best to make it sound that way. Then and only then will I collect my fee for doing my job to the BEST of my ability.

When I hear a newbie saying that he can do a better job than a "professional" mastering engineer I start to wonder three things 1) does he or she really know what they are listening to or for and 2) how much of that excitement is mirrored by the client they are working with/for and 3) What are they comparing their stuff to is it commerical material or something they have done earlier before they posted their question on the WWW and got an answer saying boost the mids 2.3 dB? MTCW and FWIW

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