The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 All  This Thread  Reviews  Gear Database  Gear for sale     Latest  Trending
Mastering With Digital Console or Analog Console (+outboard gear) instead of DAW?
Old 21st July 2018
  #31
Gear Guru
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bond117 View Post
My fear with a digital mixer is little to no quality increase over the DAW, and a redundant 6 grand spent.
For Mastering purposes, I think redundant is the perfect word for it. You might feel an improvement in Mixing workflow. Actual bottom-line sonics, doubtful.

Quote:
It's just that you can master ITB with plugins, so I figured you can also do this with a digital mixer since they're not too different.
there are some differences:

You already have a DAW and plug-ins, you would have to go out and buy a digital mixer which you have just said is not all that different. Probably not an improvement, maybe even a step down.

your options for upgrading the individual software modules on the digital mixer are somewhere between slim and none. You have so many more choices and options in the DAW.


Quote:
If I was to go with analog outboard gear for mastering, I figured an analog console was a logical addition to this because the signal path could be kept analog for longer, which I thought could yield a better result. And in reality it probably does.
most purpose- built mastering studios seek to keep the signal path as short as possible. They very often have either very minimalist consoles or they just patch only what they need. You may love the console for tracking and mixing. If you plan to mix OTB via an analog console, you will need to include in your calculations the cost of good quality D to A conversion for all those channels. That's your whole budget right there.
Old 21st July 2018
  #32
Gear Maniac
 

In all seriousness, spend part of your budget renting a pro studio for tracking a song, a pro studio for mixing a song, and a pro mastering suite to master a song. Then you’ll understand why you can’t do any of those up to professional standards for $5,000, let alone all of them for $5,000. You will also better appreciate what is most important gear wise for each respective task, and how you need to make purchase decisions by looking as your setup as a system as a whole, not as any single item one size fits all purchase.

But, if you absolutely must spend your money on something without the personal experince to know what you need, spend it on room treatment. Every good mastering and mix room needs to be acoustically treated, and tracking in a treated room usually leads to good results.

The other thing to do is think about what your prospective clients want. Are they the type that demand lots of recalls, expect instant changes, but don’t want to pay for said changes? Are they bringing you professionally recorded and produced tracks to mix and master, or are you expected to get that “analog warmth” for them at the tracking stage? Keep in mind a lot of the pros that say that mixing with plugins sound just as good as mixing all analog are getting professionally recorded tracks made on analog consoles in the best sounding tracking my rooms in town. If that doesn’t describe your clientele, then their advise doesn’t really apply to you, does it?

Just some food for thought.


Edit: after re-reading your original post, it sounds like you are planning to record, mix, and master yourself, not other people’s work. If your recording DI synths, then room acoustics don’t matter for tracking but still matter a lot for mixing or mastering. You really need to figure out basic things like how many simultaneous tracks do you need for recording and playback to decide whether going analog will fit your budget. I personally think analog gear sounds significantly better than digital models, but also the higher quality your instruments, mics, preamps, etc are at the tracking stage, the less important it is to have all analog at the mix or master stage.

Last edited by Singlecutz; 21st July 2018 at 01:38 AM..
Old 27th July 2018
  #33
mrc
Lives for gear
So what you re basically saying is that everybody should use the Paradigm 100 towers because that works for you. I find this a bit strange since there are lots of speakers out there that can outperform them in every way.
It s as if you re mocking me for spending more than 900 usd for my speakers.
Old 30th July 2018
  #34
Gear Nut
Quote:
Originally Posted by Progmatic-Studios View Post
what did you end up buying?
Hey so the weirdest thing actually happened. My friend got rid of his Allen and Heath GL 2400 32 channel mixer, sold it to me for a hundred bucks. Everything works. My current setup, all goes into the mixer, gets bussed to my audio interface, and then mastered in the daw. The rest of my budget I'm going to use on a pair of Focal Trio 6 BE Monitors
Old 31st July 2018
  #35
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chazmar View Post
This all got a little confusing but I'm going to answer "What should I do on an outboard mastering solution with 5K?"

Well, beware the "room treatment" and "monitoring" hype - If logic serves me correctly, if you can hear a finely produced master with full spectrum high quality headphones, well ..wouldn't it stand to reason that you can "produce" what you are hearing ...through full spectrum high quality headphones? The main problem you're going to run into is cork-sniffing regarding rooms and monitors. You don't not need to invest "a lot" on money into these things as I've been using Paradigm Studio 100 tower monitors that I bought $900 used for the set. Some might cork-sniff that you need to spend $15,000 for a set of monitors, but mine are fantastic and function fantastically at a fraction of the price. One luxury from doing this for a long time is that you know what you need AND you learn to know WHAT YOU DON'T NEED and what IS cork-sniffing.

Now to answer you're question: 5K ain't going to get you much. I've got a 8U rack full of the necessary processing gear for mastering and it's still 15K. Cork-sniffing would have you blowing all that on an eq OR a compressor, but it's not necessary by any means. Used gear is the key though - you can get each necessary component for under 2K that would certainly be sufficient for mastering. However, you're still looking at 8 to 10K for modest but fully capable setup.

You're going to need a little (double) the money for the outboard solution. Add another grand for some room treatment that IS necessary to a degree, but nowhere near cork-sniff land.

Curious, how do you know your $15,000 setup isn’t “cork sniffing” compared to someone else’s $14,000, $13,000, or $12,000 mastering setup? If you really believe you can effectively master on headphones, why do you have speakers in your mastering setup?
Old 31st July 2018
  #36
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bond117 View Post
Hey so the weirdest thing actually happened. My friend got rid of his Allen and Heath GL 2400 32 channel mixer, sold it to me for a hundred bucks. Everything works. My current setup, all goes into the mixer, gets bussed to my audio interface, and then mastered in the daw. The rest of my budget I'm going to use on a pair of Focal Trio 6 BE Monitors
So are things sounding and working out better/worse now that you have a hardware mixer?
Old 31st July 2018
  #37
Gear Addict
 
chazmar's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Singlecutz View Post
Curious, how do you know your $15,000 setup isn’t “cork sniffing” compared to someone else’s $14,000, $13,000, or $12,000 mastering setup? If you really believe you can effectively master on headphones, why do you have speakers in your mastering setup?
Good questions..

1 - A full mastering setup at 15K is simply not cork sniffing. You darn well know this.

2 - Exactly. I use them both. I am actually using cans now since my speakers are not setup. See, both, ...one does not debunk the other.

You've really made no point with these questions/comments.

By the way, refer to calculus and the concept of "increasing at a decreasing rate". When you have arrived at the point where the rate slopes into significant decrease, you are then in cork sniff zone. I think you really need to understand the concept and know that it is not relative either.

Last edited by chazmar; 31st July 2018 at 07:22 AM..
Old 31st July 2018
  #38
Gear Addict
 
chazmar's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrc View Post
So what you re basically saying is that everybody should use the Paradigm 100 towers because that works for you. I find this a bit strange since there are lots of speakers out there that can outperform them in every way.
It s as if you re mocking me for spending more than 900 usd for my speakers.

1 - Not what I said at all. You're "forum digressing".

2 - Once again...you're digressing - I said they are more than sufficient for mastering. If you don't agree with this you are simply ...wrong on the button.

3 - Mocking? I believe the victim was on the other end.

Old 31st July 2018
  #39
mrc
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by chazmar View Post
1 - Not what I said at all. You're "forum digressing".

2 - Once again...you're digressing - I said they are more than sufficient for mastering. If you don't agree with this you are simply ...wrong on the button.

3 - Mocking? I believe the victim was on the other end.


I m simply wrong because you said so? It s your opinion, it works for you, it doesn t mean it s gonna work for everybody.
A sealed speaker will always have lover group delay figures and lower distorsion. That is a fact, not just my opinion.
The vast majority of serious mastering studios opted for sealed speakers, are they all wrong because you said so?
I have no problem with anypody sharing their opinions, i m just bothered by the fact that you re trying to force your opinions on us as facts.

Have you tried listening to a proper full range sealed system?
Old 31st July 2018
  #40
Gear Addict
 
chazmar's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrc View Post
I m simply wrong because you said so? It s your opinion, it works for you, it doesn t mean it s gonna work for everybody.
A sealed speaker will always have lover group delay figures and lower distorsion. That is a fact, not just my opinion.
The vast majority of serious mastering studios opted for sealed speakers, are they all wrong because you said so?
I have no problem with anypody sharing their opinions, i m just bothered by the fact that you re trying to force your opinions on us as facts.

Have you tried listening to a proper full range sealed system?
You're being subjective and I'm just being objective. I think you're just missing the point. No offense.

- Manley Massive Passive IS sufficient for mastering though I do not like it at all.

- There are compressors under 2K equally sufficient for mastering as those costing 10K.

This goes back to my original point: Mastering engineers habitually judge what is sufficent and what is not sufficient to others (especially noobs) and MOST of the times it is a DOLLAR issue. I have been told that my speakers are not mastering sufficient, but 14K B&W's were. ??

To narrow in on my point: They ALL have (back to calculus) met the maximum increased portion the rate ..the $45K speaker has only increased .00005 (say) along its path. In fact, the difference from a mastering function perspective would not even result in tool adjustment ...ironically with the low resolution of stepped knobs. ??

Opinion (as you state) is a completely different thing. What is GOOD for you is subjective but fine.

If ME's were all aware of this and didn't have to meet a showboat requirement (not necessarily their fault - clients and such), they COULD save a lot of money in the "maximum increased rate" zone.

Old 31st July 2018
  #41
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chazmar View Post
Good questions..

1 - A full mastering setup at 15K is simply not cork sniffing. You darn well know this.

2 - Exactly. I use them both. I am actually using cans now since my speakers are not setup. See, both, ...one does not debunk the other.

You've really made no point with these questions/comments.

By the way, refer to calculus and the concept of "increasing at a decreasing rate". When you have arrived at the point where the rate slopes into significant decrease, you are then in cork sniff zone. I think you really need to understand the concept and know that it is not relative either.
The point I made was your notions of what is and isn’t “cork sniffing” is completely personal and subjective, and your “because I said so” type of explanations are not very helpful. Your follow up responses merely support my point further.

So basically your advice is anyone who spends more money than you is a “cork sniffer” (whatever that means), spending some money for room treatment is ok but spending more is unnecessary “cork sniffing”, and it is possible to master completely on headphones but you spent money on speakers anyways. Mmmmm hmmmmmm ...

If your definition of “cork sniffing” is buying unnecessary things, then the speakers and acoustic treatment you bought are unnecessary because you claim you can master completely on headphones. Thus, you sir are a “cork sniffer” by your own definition.

Last edited by Singlecutz; 31st July 2018 at 02:49 PM..
Old 31st July 2018
  #42
Gear Addict
 
chazmar's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Singlecutz View Post
The point I made was your notions of what is and isn’t “cork sniffing” is completely personal and subjective, and your “because I said so” type of explanations are not very helpful. Your follow up responses merely support my point further.

So basically your advice is anyone who spends more money than you is a “cork sniffer” (whatever that means), spending some money for room treatment is ok but spending more is unnecessary “cork sniffing”, and it is possible to master completely on headphones but you spent money on speakers anyways. Mmmmm hmmmmmm ...

If your definition of “cork sniffing” is buying unnecessary things, then the speakers and acoustic treatment you bought are unnecessary because claim you can master completely on headphones. Thus, you sir are a “cork sniffer” by your own definition.

Never mind. I give up. I don't continuously beat a dead horse.

Old 31st July 2018
  #43
mrc
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by chazmar View Post
You're being subjective and I'm just being objective. I think you're just missing the point. No offense.

- Manley Massive Passive IS sufficient for mastering though I do not like it at all.

- There are compressors under 2K equally sufficient for mastering as those costing 10K.

This goes back to my original point: Mastering engineers habitually judge what is sufficent and what is not sufficient to others (especially noobs) and MOST of the times it is a DOLLAR issue. I have been told that my speakers are not mastering sufficient, but 14K B&W's were. ??

To narrow in on my point: They ALL have (back to calculus) met the maximum increased portion the rate ..the $45K speaker has only increased .00005 (say) along its path. In fact, the difference from a mastering function perspective would not even result in tool adjustment ...ironically with the low resolution of stepped knobs. ??

Opinion (as you state) is a completely different thing. What is GOOD for you is subjective but fine.

If ME's were all aware of this and didn't have to meet a showboat requirement (not necessarily their fault - clients and such), they COULD save a lot of money in the "maximum increased rate" zone.


Why can t you just answer a simple question?
Have you ever heard a proper mastering syatem in a proper room? If not, how can you have an objective opinion on the subject?



I don t undersrant what you don t liking the massive passive has anything to do with the subject. Also, the massive passive doesn t cost 10k, and there really aren t any vari mu compressors under 2k out there. Again, i understand that you don t like the vari mu compression, but others might.

Just a few years ago you were asking things like "what does hp sc do on a massive passive?" or "is the art pro vla compressor good for mastering?" and now you suddenly became a mastering guru that has all the answers and knows everything better. Don t you think it s better to let the guys with actual years of experience behind them to do the talking?
Old 31st July 2018
  #44
Lives for gear
 
noah330's Avatar
Take the $5000 and put it into the bank. When you have projects you want mastered use that money to hire a professional mastering engineer. You will probably be able to find someone that has great ears and gear to master a lot of your projects and you'll get another set of ears to check your stuff out before it's released.
Old 1st August 2018
  #45
Gear Addict
 
chazmar's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrc View Post
Why can t you just answer a simple question?
Have you ever heard a proper mastering syatem in a proper room? If not, how can you have an objective opinion on the subject?



I don t undersrant what you don t liking the massive passive has anything to do with the subject. Also, the massive passive doesn t cost 10k, and there really aren t any vari mu compressors under 2k out there. Again, i understand that you don t like the vari mu compression, but others might.

Just a few years ago you were asking things like "what does hp sc do on a massive passive?" or "is the art pro vla compressor good for mastering?" and now you suddenly became a mastering guru that has all the answers and knows everything better. Don t you think it s better to let the guys with actual years of experience behind them to do the talking?
My question about the ART was in the context of "are we being too hard on it?" - could we really master with it or does "cork sniffing" automatically disqualify it?

I found out the disconnect with you fellas - you don't know what "cork sniff" means. I honestly think my analogies and explanations went over your heads and I was hoping a stronger cognitive thinker would come in and elaborate a little. It didn't happen, or we have a typical case of bystander effect. No offense guys.
Topic:
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump