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Mastering gear to deal with spatialisation Sound Enhancers & Exciters (HW)
Old 9th September 2007
  #1
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sub-d0's Avatar
 

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Mastering gear to deal with spatialisation

it would seem that there is a few manufacturers only who propose mastering gear to SPATIALIZE stereo ...(vitalizer from spl, Weiss and Bob Katz with the ambiance regenerator..)

-how do you deal with spatialisation ?
-do you know other gear exept the one who use MS technic ??
-do you often use reverb ???
-there is any other tips ??

it seem that it is "simple" to get more "wide" but how to do with depth or height ?? there is any technic to deal with or it depend only of the mix ??

thanks in advance to all
françois
SONICS MASTERING
Old 9th September 2007
  #2
Quote:
Originally Posted by sub-d0 View Post
...there is any other tips ??
françois
An easy one would be to use dynamic processing in UN-linked mode, but it really depends on the source.
As with most stereo enhancement, you've got to pay attention to the direct-ness/tightness of the mono/mid info. It seems to me that this is usually affected in a negative way. But sometimes it just fits.

Peter
Old 9th September 2007
  #3
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Darius van H's Avatar
 

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hmmmm, spacialization, not really sure what you mean with that.

Anyway, one technique i might use for making something wider, without necessarily making the center info weaker, is to do some M/S eq'ing, trying to accenuate different frequencies in the S and M channel....so for instance, adding some 400hz & 6k in the middle for the vocal, while, adding some other freq's like 3k and 200hz at the sides for the guitars.

One other thing that seems to make things wider is to using and "fattening" box like the Phoenix, which seems to make things in the middle more forward, then us some S eq'ing to balance this, leading to a generally "wider" sound (maybe!)

You gotta be careful with this stuff, as you can really screw up the sound if you don't know what you're doing.

I would only use reverb if the client requested it.
Old 9th September 2007
  #4
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The Neve Masterpiece has the Image control for Depth and Ambience. I know other pieces have been discussed here with unique features.

Regards,
Bruce
Old 9th September 2007
  #5
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I've just received K-Stereo. Very simple effect but powerful effect. Reminds me moments when I asked myself "what did they use on master to make it sounds like this ? This had to be in a mix".

However I have this one for not so long time, usage seems to be quite limited to acoustic tracks. Anyway, I will be checking it with other styles too.

It rather can't be compared to SPL Vitalizer or other M/S based processors because it doesn't expand stereo image (but it also has an option for modifying M/S parameters). With K-Stereo you can convert mono to stereo and things are sounding more like recorded in stereo than with effect added. Really nice stuff.
Old 9th September 2007
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sub-d0 View Post
it would seem that there is a few manufacturers only who propose mastering gear to SPATIALIZE stereo ...(vitalizer from spl, Weiss and Bob Katz with the ambiance regenerator..)

-how do you deal with spatialisation ?
I think words more commonly used and understood by engineers to describe what you are asking is "effect the stereo image"

If I want to effect the stereo image (either going wider or narrower) I usually apply gain changes to the Mid/Side channels in the digital domain (usually using the Sonoris MS Codec - Sonoris - MS Codec for SAWStudio ). Sometimes equalizing the Side channel differently from the Mid channel will also allow the stereo image to be changed.

In the analog realm I've also gotten very good mileage out of the "stereo width" feature from the SPL SX2 Vitalizer in order to achieve greater width in a way that isn't just simple gain increase on the side channel.

In the digital realm in the past I've also once in a blue moon used the Waves S1 and the Virtos Audio Stereo Processor Virtos Audio - Restoration, Noise Reduction and Enhancement

Quote:
-do you know other gear exept the one who use MS technic ??
Legendary Masterpiece - LegendaryAudio home page
Rupert Neve Designs Portico Stereo Field Editor - Rupert Neve Designs - Portico 5014 - Stereo Field Editor
Digital Domain K-Stereo - Digital Domain - K-Stereo
Bedini B.A.S.E. - BEDINI ELECTRONICS, INC..
SPL Vitalizer - Sound Performance Lab . Classic Vitalizer . in detail

Quote:
-do you often use reverb ???
Almost never. I will readily use reverb to repair tails that are very noisy or cut off by automating the reverb to turn on just at a final hit at the ending prior to a fade. Otherwise reverb would only be added at the direct request of the client. I can think of one case recently working on a solo piano/voice recording that was tracked straight to DAT which was a very dry that I applied some convolution reverb using the SIR VST plugin that turned out really nice - but this is a very rare exception.


Quote:
it seem that it is "simple" to get more "wide" but how to do with depth or height ??
"Depth" and "height" are illusions based on room and speaker and speaker placement, and as such I think are moving targets that can't be necessarilly created for exactly in the mastering process. Often making things wider or effecting the stereo image at either the mix or mastering stage will effect the perceptions of these things though.

Quote:
there is any technic to deal with or it depend only of the mix ??
To me the absolute best place to achieve a wide image is in the mix - by appropriately panning elements, and capturing some elements with true stereo recording techniques.

It's crucial when effecting the stereo image during mastering to make sure that you are not losing the integrity of the original mix's balance. Often going too wide with things will make the center (which often has "impact" elements such as kick, snare, lead vox) softer.

Most often simply balancing the spectrum appropriately for a mix will allow the mix to seem more open and "wider." So I'd suggest attempting to get the eq right first before applying any stereo processing unless you really are dealing with a really "clogged" mix.

Best regards,
Steve Berson
Old 9th September 2007
  #7
Lives for gear
This may be useful; Try to decrease some freq.s (keep it narrow) with ozone's multiband stereo imaging. But be careful about the balance.
Old 10th September 2007
  #8
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lucey's Avatar
 

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Desper products made a Spatializer Retro in the mid 90s that I used to use for odd mixing and a guitar rig. Not into it for mastering however. The Alpha's EQ/SC/Gain on M or S works wonders.
Old 10th September 2007
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sub-d0 View Post
-do you know other gear exept the one who use MS technic
The SPL Tube Vitalizer: Others than the other Vitalizers there is no stereo expander but a tube circuit which makes the sound more wide, deep and transparent in a soft way. It's an AEG tube-design from 1955 which interestingly also reduces the crosstalk to 54dB like vinyl-cutting. Compared to most other stereo-wideners it doesn't mess with the correlation, which I think is a cool thing at the mastering-stage. On the other hand you can't adjust it, it's just an on- or off-switch... but then a nice one :-)
(also very nice on the stereo buss of an ITB-mix btw)

Andreas
Old 10th September 2007
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yareck View Post
I've just received K-Stereo. Very simple effect but powerful effect. Reminds me moments when I asked myself "what did they use on master to make it sounds like this ? This had to be in a mix". ....
I've had my K-Unit for several years and like it a lot. It's been used on 100's of masters here.

However, here's a couple of tips that you might find useful.

When mastering tracks with percussion tracks with bright, hard hits, like tabla, congas, etc, the K-Unit tends to smear these but very, very subtly. You might not notice or it might not bother you but it may bother the player or producer.

My most recent example was with an East Indian traditional album with pop influences that I recently had to remaster entirely. The producer called me up, identified the problem, and since I have had extensive experience with this, I told him I knew what was causing this and I'd make a test master to show him that we could clear up the problem very easily. I ended up running the album exactly as it was before but without the K-Unit. Thankfully I logged all the settings.

The next time I master an album like this I'm going to point out the potential problem and get the producer to sit in the best spot and/or use headphones. That way, he will be responsible for the remaster, if necessary, not me!

The K-Unit, like other units of its type, induces cross-talk. So I was mastering a punk/pop album that had a 2 bar breakdown in one song which had an affected solo voice on one side only (hard panned). The producer listened at home with headphones and discovered that it was no longer on one side. Again, I knew exactly what it was but it didn't bother me and the producer (as in the first case) didn't hear it at the session. Again I mastered a test track and cleared up the problem. Unfortunately, he was now turned off me using the K-Unit on the whole album so I had to run it through entirely without the unit.

This is not to single out the K-Unit because I'm sure other units do this as well, for instance, the Waves S1. Of course the K-Unit is a far superior unit as compared to the S1 but they both can induce cross-talk.

And of course ME's are responsible for understanding how their gear works but these cases are examples of adding something that wasn't on the mix and even if the ME likes the effect, if the client discovers later that the overall enhancement to the track spoiled some detailed aspect of the mix, we have to fix it! You can tell them that they should have heard it at the time, but that will definitely not fly with some people so in these particular cases, I redid the tracks for no charge.
Old 10th September 2007
  #11
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I've got a Berdini B.A.S.E unit coming to me soon, I'll report how this sounds to this thread. At the moment I use DUY Wide, it's not like other wideners that I've tried that turn down the centre & raise the sides (like M/S) it sounds very good with moderate settings.

Edit...

Decided after reading some reviews that I wouldn't bother getting the Bedini BASE in for trial...
Old 10th September 2007
  #12
something else that should be explored (ITB) at mix time is the Pan Law setting in your DAW.
Old 10th September 2007
  #13
Mastering
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy Krehm View Post
I've had my K-Unit for several years and like it a lot. It's been used on 100's of masters here.

However, here's a couple of tips that you might find useful.

When mastering tracks with percussion tracks with bright, hard hits, like tabla, congas, etc, the K-Unit tends to smear these but very, very subtly. You might not notice or it might not bother you but it may bother the player or producer.
Here's a hint on that, Andy, from the designer! Try a low pass filter on the ambience eq when the percussion gets a bit too "washy" but otherwise you might like the amount of ambience or depth. I'm not sure that the term "crosstalk" that you are using is the best word; it's simply a matter of how the ambience extraction algorithm works----short, percussive sounds can pick up the sound of the original room faster or more greatly than other types of sounds making the sound of the percussion too ambient or washy. That's where the high and/or low pass filters in the ambience EQ can help. As for the feeling you're "adding something that was not in the mix", it's really more a case of "enhancing" or bringing out more details of something that WAS in the mix, but turning that up too far! If you wish to call that "crosstalk" I won't really argue, but truly it's a case of going too far with a good thing...

Like so many pieces of processing gear, if you notice it obviously, it's probably turned up too far. Like so many other processes that we know, K-stereo is one of those that you should miss when you take it away, but should not call attention to itself when it is in.

I hope this helps!
Old 11th September 2007
  #14
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Bob Yordan's Avatar
Cool Mr Bob Katz is back posting.

I really would like to get K-Stereo demoed. Must check if there is any Swedish re-sale organisation??

-------------------

Now I only use my own developed plugs for spatial effects, they have been made to compensate for switching to mono. So that the sound image does not disapear behind the mono component in the mix,
when I listen to it in mono. And it adds nice wiiiiidth & deeeepth to the mix when I listen to it i stereo.

Old 11th September 2007
  #15
Mastering
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Yordan View Post
Cool Mr Bob Katz is back posting.

I really would like to get K-Stereo demoed. Must check if there is any Swedish re-sale organisation??

-------------------

Now I only use my own developed plugs for spatial effects, they have been made to compensate for switching to mono. So that the sound image does not disapear behind the mono component in the mix,
when I listen to it in mono. And it adds nice wiiiiidth & deeeepth to the mix when I listen to it i stereo.

Bob Y, please write me off list. bobkatz[at sign]digido.com
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