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best limiter for older cd's Dynamics Plugins
Old 3 weeks ago
  #1
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best limiter for older cd's

Hi Guys, I'm no mastering engineer. I do however have some older cd's that have never been remastered and would like to at least add a touch of eq and limiter to them to try and bring them up to a modern sounding cd. Not brickwalled or anything, just a bit of mastering to give them some new life. What's a good limiter plugin and doing just that. Fab Filter L, Elephant, Fx by Slate,Limiter6, Sony Oxford Limiter or maybe even PSP Xenon. I'm up for suggestions....something with some good presets would be nice since I'm no expert. Thanks

Duck
Old 3 weeks ago
  #2
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bicarbone's Avatar
Fabfilter and Voxengo are really good. Now, I wouldn't make them limit more than 2-3 dBs and I wouldn't use any eq. Actually I wouldn't alter anything, even though I could understand you want to get more gain out of older CD tracks.

Why do you want to make older CD's sound modern if I may ask?
Old 3 weeks ago
  #3
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thanks, I'm making a greatest hits and the older cd's with the songs I want sound very unmastered compared to the newer ones, im really just trying to make them blend a bit more.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #4
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Adam Dempsey's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Usually reducing the loudest tracks is better or as equally required as limiting softer tracks, especially as there's likely up to more than 6dB difference involved in this situation.

Do you have iTunes and have you tried its Sound Check function (in preferences)? I'm unsure if that carries through to CD burns or exports (possibly playback only), but if so, and if this is for a one-off for private use, simply rip tracks to iTunes (as wav or Apple Lossless), activate Sound Check (or manually level adjust each under Track Info>Options) and burn to disc or export. Done.

Last edited by Adam Dempsey; 3 weeks ago at 10:12 AM..
Old 3 weeks ago
  #5
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loujudson's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicoftime View Post
thanks, I'm making a greatest hits and the older cd's with the songs I want sound very unmastered compared to the newer ones, im really just trying to make them blend a bit more.
The rule is: If it sounds good it is good. I would feel free to gently EQ to make them sound similar, and only use a limiter if you're trying to match it to excessivly limited CDs.

If the older ones are TOO limited, I find that using a reverse compression (such as Waves Renn comp set to uncompress) can give new life to over-compressed material.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #6
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wado1942's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam Dempsey View Post
Usually reducing the loudest tracks is better or as equally required vs limiting softer tracks, especially as there's likely up to more than 6dB difference involved.
I totally agree. It's much better to bring down newer masters to something more reasonable rather than ruining something that was mastered with respect for the source material.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #7
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I dont think reducing twenty remastered songs to match one unremastered song has any logic to it. Raising the volume of a song 4db is hardly going to destroy the song if limited correctly.. Older cd's can be and most are very quiet compared to todays cd's, the heardroom is there. The goal was simply to add a few db not to brickwall it like Metallica.lol. I just wanted a natural sounding limiter that could do the job right. That's all.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #8
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Qtwister's Avatar
 

try the UAD Maximizer never thought i would say this
Old 3 weeks ago
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qtwister View Post
try the UAD Maximizer never thought i would say this
why is that
Old 3 weeks ago
  #10
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Qtwister's Avatar
 

i would guess your CDs are pre loudness war era ... That way u can change the perceived loudness.. without changing the sound to much if its carefully done
Old 3 weeks ago
  #11
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Adam Dempsey's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicoftime View Post
I dont think reducing twenty remastered songs to match one unremastered song has any logic to it. Raising the volume of a song 4db is hardly going to destroy the song if limited correctly.. Older cd's can be and most are very quiet compared to todays cd's, the heardroom is there. The goal was simply to add a few db not to brickwall it like Metallica.lol. I just wanted a natural sounding limiter that could do the job right. That's all.
Hi, you asked for advice and got some, from a couple of professional mastering engineers. That's all.

The heardroom (sic) may not be there if the original tracks are peaking to full scale, and depending on the year of the tracks' release I'm guessing 4dB would be very conservative.

So the best compromise (often with compilations) is a combination of reducing the loud and raising the soft. But yes – leaving things well alone as much as possible, always. If it's just one track vs the rest, try any limiter you mentioned in your first post.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #12
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Greg Reierson's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicoftime View Post
thanks, I'm making a greatest hits and the older cd's with the songs I want sound very unmastered compared to the newer ones, im really just trying to make them blend a bit more.
What does "sound very unmastered" mean?
Old 3 weeks ago
  #13
Gear Addict
 
Giuseppe Zaccaria's Avatar
 

Limitless and Ozone8 maximizer module are very good option, but don't go more than 2-3db each. Yes you can use both togheter (if needed). Since you'll alter the loudness, dynamics and tonal balance of the tracks, you'll have to compensate with eqs at some point. Sonoris Mastering eq or Equilibrium are the best choice to retain maximum transparency with basically no phase issues. Whatever you will end up with, do it cautiously
Old 3 weeks ago
  #14
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Reierson View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicoftime View Post
thanks, I'm making a greatest hits and the older cd's with the songs I want sound very unmastered compared to the newer ones, im really just trying to make them blend a bit more.
What does "sound very unmastered" mean?
Dull, lifeless, very little eq. too quite..lots of first gen cds suffer from this..a hint of eq and a bit of limiting can do wonders to improve the sound.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #15
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Bob Olhsson's Avatar
 

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My experience has been those first generation CDs are very fragile and often become pretty crunchy sounding after any DSP is applied.
Old 2 weeks ago
  #16
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Jonathan Race's Avatar
The middle ground here is to limit the older songs a little to bring them up and then to bring the newer songs down in level. Won't be as loud as just limiting the older tracks loads and won't be as transparent as just bringing the newer songs down but I guess it's a happy medium?
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